(Springfield-jm) -- More than 530,000 mail in ballots have already been mailed in. That’s from the more than 2.2 million ballots that were requested and sent to voters. Illinois State Board of Elections spokesman Matt Dietrich said mail in ballots received by local elections officials before the close of the election Nov. 3 will be counted after the polls close. Ballots with postmarks of Nov. 3 will be counted up to two weeks after.



(Undated-jm) -- As we head through October, many of us across Illinois will remember the early snow that we had last Halloween now we are looking ahead to what this winter might bring to Central Illinois. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Climate Prediction Center predicts wetter-than-average conditions are most likely across the northern tier of the U.S., extending from the Pacific Northwest, across the Northern Plains, Great Lakes and into the Ohio Valley. As for temperatures, there’s equal chances for below-, near- or above-average temperatures for our area.



(Springfield-jm) -- The Illinois Department of Public Health reported Thursday a record daily high of new COVID-19 cases. Four thousand 15 new cases have been confirmed and 53 additional deaths. That’s the highest one day total since more than 53 hundred new cases were reported on September 4th due to a backlog in tests. Earlier this week Governor J-B Pritzker warned the public that the virus is still dangerous…



Illinois Governor J-B Pritzker. Long term effects include breathing problems and exhaustion. The statewide test positivity rate has now risen to four point nine percent, with higher numbers seen in many communities.



(Undated-jm) -- Locally, McLean County reported 3 new cases bringing their total to 3,747. Champaign County reported 65 new cases bringing their total to 5,424. Livingston County reported 13 new cases bringing their total to 526. Ford County reported 4 new cases bringing their total to 230. Vermilion County reported 59 new cases and 1 additional death bringing their total number of cases to 1,211 and deaths to 8. Kankakee County reported 40 new cases and 1 additional death bringing their total number of cases to 3,076 and deaths to 75. Iroquois County reported 9 new cases bringing their total number of cases to 481.



(Paxton-jm) -- This week’s Scott’s Tips for Success has to do with winterizing your yard. Paxton Hardware and Rental’s Scott Allen has these tips…



Scott Allen with Paxton Hardware and Rental. You can hear more tips for winterizing your yard tomorrow morning with Scott’s Tips for Success at 7:30.



(Bellflower-jm) -- Two Bellflower men are facing meth charges. Paul Gilligan is charged with unlawful possession of between 400 and 900 grams of meth with intent to deliver, 3 counts of unlawful delivery of between 15 and 100 grams of meth, 1 count of unlawful possession of a firearm by a felon and 1 count of unlawful possession of firearm ammunition by a felon. Justin Abbott  is charged with unlawful possession of 100-400 grams of meth with the intent to deliver and unlawful possession of meth for the same quantity. They could face federal charges as well.



(Undated-jm) -- Governor J-B Pritzker  announced the U.S. Small Business Administration has approved the state’s request for federal assistance to help businesses and private non-profits in more than 60 counties recover from economic injury stemming from civil unrest that took place in Illinois between May 26 and July 30. Small businesses in Champaign, Ford, McLean, Kankakee and Vermilion Counties are eligible.



(Paxton-cf)-- The Paxton Emergency Response Service will be hosting three Chili Suppers in the coming weeks. The first supper will be held Thursday October 22, Paxton ERS Volunteer Jason Madden has the details… 



Paxton ERS Volunteer Jason Madden. There will also be membership forms available if you are interested in joining the ERS. 



(Undated-jm) -- Apex Clean Energy along with the Ford Ridge Windfarm have awarded 9 grants from their community grant program funds to area organizations. Those receiving grants include the Gibson City Rotary Club, the Ed Day Memorial Skate Park fund, the Gibson City Restoration Committee, Tri-Point School District, Gibson Area Food Pantry at the hospital, Bayles Lake Homeowners Association, the Gibson City Melvin Sibley School District, Jeremiah 33:6 and the Sibley Business and Historical Association.



(Washington-jm) -- What's the global situation for corn? Stephanie Ho reports…



The Loda American Legion will host their fish and chicken fry tonight from 4 to 7:30.


The Rantoul Area Chamber of Commerce will be hosting a Holiday Shop Hop on Saturday from 9 to 6.


Paxton IGA will be hosting a cookout benefiting Toys for Tots on Saturday from 10-2.

(Springfield-jm) -- October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and the Illinois Lottery is joining the fight against breast cancer with an instant ticket. This is the 15th year for the "Carolyn Adams Ticket for the Cure." The ticket was named for former Illinois Lottery Superintendent Carolyn Adams, who died of breast cancer in 2007. It costs $3 and features a top prize of $50,000.



(Springfield-jm) -- Across Illinois, school districts are seeing a shortage of substitute teachers. Based on the most recent survey from 2017, the Illinois Association of Regional Superintendent of Schools found that 53% of school districts reported a shortage of substitute teachers. 



(Undated-jm) -- As for local active and recovered cases, McLean County reported 3,424 have recovered, 281 are in isolation and 12 are hospitalized. Champaign County reported 5,080 have recovered, 317 are in isolation and 5 are hospitalized. Livingston County reported 475 have been removed from isolation, 42 cases are active with 1 hospitalized. Ford County reported 155 have recovered, 63 are in isolation with 5 hospitalized. Vermilion County reported 940 have been released from isolation, 254 remain in isolation and 9 are hospitalized. Kankakee County reported 2,609 have recovered, 392 cases are active with 14 hospitalized. Iroquois County reported 404 have been released from isolation, 56 are in isolation with 2 hospitalized.



(Ashkum-jm) -- Illinois State Police District 21 in Ashkum will be conducting Nighttime Enforcement Patrols during the month of October. WPXN’s Jason Madden has the details…




(Watseka-jm) -- One person is hospitalized and a home a total loss following a fire in Watseka Thursday. Firefighters were called to the fire on W. Iroquois Street. Officials believe an electrical issue caused the fire.



(Danville-jm) -- Vermilion County will once again host a free mobile COVID-19 clinic. The clinic will start Monday and run through October 25th at the Vermilion County Public Health Department in Danville. Hours for the clinic are 9 to 4:30.



(Springfield-jm) -- Schools in Illinois have been in session for about two months already. The 2020-2021 school year looks different compared to others because of the Coronavirus pandemic. 53rd District State Senator Jason Barickman of Bloomington says schools have done a good job adapting to the changes without much help from Springfield…



53rd District State Senator Jason Barickman of Bloomington.



(Washington-jm) -- Congressman John Shimkus is accepting applications for military service academy nominations. To be eligible: applicants must be American citizens at least 17 but not more than 23 years of age, not married or have legal obligations of child support and must live within the 15th Congressional District. Applications are due by October 30th and can be obtained by calling his office at 618-288-7190.



(Washington-jm) -- Eligible producers now have until March 15th to make elections and enroll in either of USDA's Farm Bill safety net programs for the 2021 crop year. Rod Bain reports…



Christie Clinic will be hosting a drive thru flu clinic on Saturday from 7 to noon at their location on Windsor.


The Vermilion County Public Health Department is hosting a free electronics recycling event for Vermilion County residents only on Saturday from 9 to 11 am at Danville Area Community College.


The Cissna Park FFA Chapter will hold a harvest lunch on Saturday from 11-2 at the high school cafeteria, then they will hold a trunk or treat from 2-4 pm in the high school parking lot.


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