(Springfield-jm) -- Secretary of State Jesse White says teen driving deaths in Illinois are down by 74 percent. That decrease is since 2007, the year before the state implemented the graduated driver’s license program which placed stricter requirements on new drivers, says Secretary White…



Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White. Last year in Illinois, 41 teens were killed in traffic crashes. That compares to 155 in 2007.



(Springfield-jm) -- Some Illinois taxpayers could be paying nearly 60 percent combined federal and state marginal tax rates if Joe Biden is elected president and Illinois voters approve the graduated income tax. Former Vice President Joe Biden’s tax plan, as analyzed by the nonpartisan Tax Foundation, would take the top federal individual income tax rates from 37 percent to 49.4 percent, when including various proposals. The Tax Foundation previously reported that if Illinois adopts the state income tax change, the state’s business climate would sink to near the bottom of all states from 36th to 47th. For individuals, it reaches 57.26 percent and for pass-through businesses, it gets just under 59 percent. That’d be near three other states that could have 60 percent top rates when combining the federal and state income taxes, California would come in at 62.64 percent, Hawaii at 60.34 percent and New Jersey at 60.09 percent.



(Springfield-jm) -- Governor J.B. Pritzker ranked near the bottom of all state governors across the nation, according to a conservative nonprofit organization. The American Legislative Exchange Council released its first Governors ranking, the 2020 Laffer-ALEC Report on Economic Freedom. The scorecard ranked America’s 50 governors based on policy performance and executive leadership before and after the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Pritzker was ranked 44th in the country.



(Springfield-jm) -- With the continued dryness across much of the state, the Illinois Fire Marshal’s Office says there’s still a concern about fires. The lack of rain and high winds some days has made conditions ripe for fires, with some breaking out in fields. State Fire Marshal Spokesperson JC Fultz says when it’s this dry, it doesn’t take much to start a fire. He has this warning…



State Fire Marshal Spokesperson JC Fultz. For camp and backyard fires, Fultz advises having a supply of water or fire extinguisher on hand and says you shouldn’t use a flammable liquid like gas to start your fire.



(Undated-jm) -- The Illinois Department of Public Health is reporting 3,714 new Coronavirus cases and 41 additional deaths bringing the state’s total to 350,875 and deaths to 9,277. The seven day positivity rate is now at 5.5 percent. Locally, McLean County reported 23 new cases and 1 additional death bringing their total number of cases to 3,881 and deaths to 31. Champaign County reported 6 new cases bringing their total to 5,661. Kankakee County reported 27 new cases bringing their total to 3,235. Ford County reported 5 new cases bringing their total to 256. Vermilion County reported 21 new cases bringing their total to 1,335. Iroquois County reported 12 new cases bringing their total to 509. Livingston County reported 34 new cases bringing their total to 604.



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



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



(Rantoul-jm) -- Two people are dead and two more taken to the hospital. Police were called to the 500 block of north Sheldon. They found a 59 and 58 year old deceased. A 67 and 54 year old were taken to the hospital. Police believe it was from a suspected drug overdose.



(Rantoul-jm) -- One person was taken to the hospital with possible life threatening injuries following an accident in Rantoul last night. Rantoul police say the accident happened on the Murray Road extension. They say a car struck a bicyclist.



(Urbana-cf)-- If you have never received a flu shot before, this might be the first year you want to do so. The flu with the shot is treatable as well as preventable. With the COVID-19 pandemic, the start of flu season, and other respiratory illnesses that occur during the winter months, it could overwhelm the hospital system, says Champaign-Urbana Public Health District Administrator Julie Pryde…. 



Champaign-Urbana Public Health District Administrator Julie Pryde.



(Paxton-jm) -- There will be no Halloween parade in Paxton this year. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic the Paxton Park District decided against holding the parade but instead will hold a drive thru trick or treat at the civic center from 4-6 pm on October 31st.



(Rantoul-jm) -- There will be a free drive thru COVID-19 testing site in Rantoul on Sunday. Testing will take place in the parking lot of the Greater New Light Baptist Church located at 1500 Sheppard Drive from 1-5 pm. 



(Undated-jm) -- Crop harvesting is progressing quickly in Illinois. Another week of very little rain gave producers plenty of time in the fields, says State Crop Statistician Mark Schleusener…



State Crop Statistician Mark Schleusener. 81 percent of soybeans have been harvested, well ahead of the five year average of 66 percent. 73 percent of winter wheat has been planted and 25 percent has emerged. Average statewide topsoil moisture declined to 22 percent very short, 34 percent short, 43 percent adequate and one percent surplus.

(Springfield-jm) -- The Illinois Department of Natural Resources is announcing health and safety precautions for deer hunting at state parks this year. IDNR wants to make sure hunters stay safe from the Coronavirus while enjoying the outdoors. That’s why there’s some changes this year says Spokesperson Rachel Torbert…



Illinois Department of Natural Resources Spokesperson Rachel Torbert. Additionally, there will be no in person drawings and assignments for blind locations or hunting zones and no pre-season orientation meetings will be held this year. Check IDNR’s website for more information and for impacts on specific state parks.



(Undated-jm) -- Fewer than 1 percent of dentists nationwide were found to be COVID-19 positive. That’s according to a report published by The Journal of the American Dental Association. The American Association of Endodontists says nearly 100 percent of dentists are using enhanced infection controls.



(Springfield-jm) -- Right now, there’s a shortage of healthcare workers. The healthcare worker shortage, especially for nurses, is no surprise. This has been an existing problem way before the pandemic, but since all 11 regions in the state are seeing an increase in COVID-19 cases, local nurses are saying it’s a crucial time for Illinois. Approximately half of the nurses in Illinois are 55 and older. Governor Pritzker last week extended an order to bring in out of state nurses to help.



(Undated-jm) -- Illinois now has more than 350,000 Coronavirus cases and almost 9,300 deaths. The seven day positivity rate now sits at 5.5 percent. As for local active and recovered cases, McLean County reported 3,571 have recovered, 264 are in isolation with 15 are hospitalized. Champaign County reported 5,323 have recovered, 310 are in isolation with 5 are hospitalized. Kankakee County reported 2,660 have recovered, 500 cases are active with 28 hospitalized. Ford County reported 209 have been released from isolation, 31 are in isolation with 6 hospitalized. Vermilion County reported 1,134 have been released from isolation, 184 are in isolation with 8 hospitalized. Iroquois County reported 435 have been released from isolation, 50 are in isolation with 5 hospitalized. Livingston County reported 522 have been removed from isolation, 72 cases are active with 4 hospitalized.



(Champaign-jm) -- As voters get ready to go to the polls for either early voting or on election day, some have concerns about the safety of voting in person during the pandemic. Champaign County Clerk Aarons Ammons says they have protocol in place to protect everyone…



Champaign County Clerk Aaron Ammons.



(Thomasboro-jm) -- Human remains found 25 years ago in a field in Thomasboro have finally been identified. The skeletal remains of the woman were discovered in a farm field near Thomasboro on May 1, 1995. The Champaign County Sheriff’s Office and Coroner’s Office revealed the identity as Keri Lynn Wyant.



(Mahomet-jm) -- Police are searching for the vehicle that was reportedly involved in a deadly hit-and-run collision. At approximately 4:20 p.m. on Sunday, October 11, three bicyclists were traveling on the right side of Illinois Route 150 westbound, approximately half a mile east of County Road 125 East in Champaign County. The vehicle allegedly struck one of the bicyclists, causing injuries that led to his death. Then, police say a second bicyclist was struck, but the individual sustained non-life-threatening injuries. Illinois State Police are searching for the vehicle of interest in this hit-and-run. It is described as a 2010-2014 white Ford Mustang with black side view mirrors.



(Paxton-cf)--Discover Ag Day Camp is an event that the Paxton Buckley Loda FFA Chapter as well as PBL Agriculture students hold every year. The purpose of the event is to teach younger kids the ins and outs of agriculture, and how important it is to our society. This year’s camp will look similar, and different at the same time as the event will be held over Google meets. PBL FFA Member Maci Kingren describes that process… 



PBL FFA Member Maci Kingren. 



(Urbana-jm) -- The University of Illinois has canceled spring break and pushed back the start of the semester by one week. The start of the spring semester will now be January 25th instead of January 19th. The new calendar also includes three days off throughout the spring semester. Those are February 17th, March 24th and April 13th. The changes come as the University looks at ways to reduce COVID spikes on campus.



(Watseka-jm) -- Iroquois County residents will have a chance to get rid of unwanted electronics this weekend. Electronics recycling will take place on Saturday from 9 to noon at the Stock and Field parking lot in Watseka. You must show proof of being an Iroquois County resident.



(Springfield-jm) -- Crop harvesting is progressing quickly in Illinois. 66 percent of corn has been harvested, up from 45 percent last week and about on track with the five year average. State Crop Statistician Mark Schleusener looks at soybeans…



State Crop Statistician Mark Schleusener. 73 percent of winter wheat has been planted and 25 percent emerged. The lack of rain brought average topsoil moisture to 22 percent very short, 34 percent short, 43 percent adequate and one percent surplus.

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