(Springfield-jm) -- A House legislative committee is discussing tweaks to current state gaming laws. One proposal allows people to place bets on Illinois college sports. But University of Illinois Athletic Director Josh Whitman says he and his colleagues oppose the idea, noting the importance of student athlete mental health. He says players are already attacked online after a bad game…



University of Illinois Athletic Director Josh Whitman. A representative of the declining horse racing industry also testified at the hearing, saying that the 2019 gambling expansion law did not dedicate any revenue towards the purses awarded.



(Springfield-jm) -- The Illinois Department of Public Health is looking into use of an electronic COVID-19 vaccination card. At a legislative hearing this week, State Public Health Director Dr Ngozi Ezike touted the benefits of getting the shot. She was asked how people will prove they’ve had the vaccine…



Illinois Public Health Director Dr Ngozi Ezike. Event organizers and sports teams are figuring out how to bring back visitors and fans. That could include only allowing those who have received the shot to enter.



(Undated-jm) -- The Illinois Department of Public Health reported 3,394 new Coronavirus cases and 38 additional deaths Thursday. Champaign County reported 23 new cases bringing their total to 20,199. Vermilion County reported 28 new cases bringing their total to 9,194. Iroquois County reported 12 new cases bringing their total to 2,955. Ford County did not have a report.



(Paxton-jm) -- Fireworks will likely go off this summer in the city of Paxton. Mayor Bill Ingold says the city is planning for the annual 4th of July celebration…



Paxton Mayor Bill Ingold.



(Paxton-jm) -- An Arbor Day observance will take place this morning in Paxton. The observance will take place at Pells Park near the cannon at 7:30.



(Gibson City-jm) -- Gibson City has a new member on the city council. Mayor Dan Dickey appointed Michelle Celeschi to fill the vacancy in ward 3 following the resignation of Aaron Kafer.



(Rantoul-jm) -- The Rantoul Township High School FFA will be hosting their annual plant sale coming up on Saturday, May 8th from 8 to noon at the high school. FFA Advisor Theresa Porter talks about the types of plants that will be for sale…



Rantoul Township High School FFA Advisor Theresa Porter. Proceeds from the sale will go to the chapter.


Cissna Park townwide garage sales will take place today and tomorrow


A spring fling craft and vendor show will take place tomorrow from 9 to 2 at the Harvest Moon Twin Drive-in in Gibson City. Over 50 vendors will be present. Admission is free.


Paxton IGA will be hosting their cookout benefiting the Loda American Legion tomorrow from 10 to 2.


Draggin Main will take place in downtown Paxton tomorrow from 4 to 9 pm.


Gibson City will host their sesquicentennial community event at North Park on Sunday from 1-4 pm.

(Springfield-jm) -- A new report looks at the main causes of death for new mothers in Illinois. The data covers deaths in 2016 and 2017 among pregnant women and those within one year of pregnancy says State Public Health Director Dr Ngozi Ezike…



State Public Health Director Dr Ngozi Ezike. That’s followed by hypertensive disorders and hemorrhage. Ezike says black women are more than three times as likely to die during or within a year after their pregnancy. Most black women died of related medical problems while white women died more often because of pregnancy-related mental health conditions.



(Springfield-jm) -- Illinois lawmakers are sending emergency housing legislation to the Governor’s desk. The bill was passed by the Senate and sets up guidelines for administering one point four billion dollars in federal rental assistance says Senator Omar Aquino of Chicago. It also places a stay on foreclosures through next month…



State Senator Omar Aquino of Chicago. The measure also seals eviction records until July 31st of 2022.



(Undated-jm) -- The Illinois Department of Public Health reported 3,394 new Coronavirus cases and 38 additional deaths Thursday. As for local active and recovered cases, Champaign County reported 19,625 have recovered, 430 are in isolation and 18 are hospitalized. Iroquois County reported 2,865 have been released from isolation, 25 are in isolation and 4 are hospitalized. Vermilion County reported 122 active cases and 8 are hospitalized.


(Gibson City-jm) --  Gibson City is celebrating their sesquicentennial this year. There are events taking place throughout the year including a beard growing contest and photography contest. A big community celebration will take place on May 2nd says Spokesperson Susie Tongate…



Gibson City Sesquicentennial Spokesperson Susie Tongate. The Harvest Moon Twin Drive in will also have a special movie Sunday night says Spokesperson Ben Harroun…



Harvest Moon Twin Drive In Spokesperson Ben Harroun. 



(Hoopeston-jm) -- A Hoopeston man is facing drug charges. Troy Wright was arrested after an officer saw Wright and knew he had an outstanding warrant. In the process of arresting Wright for the warrant, the officer discovered meth. He was also charged with possession of meth.



(Undated-jm) -- First Mid Illinois Bancshares reported first quarter net income of $4.1 million. The Mattoon based bank with locations in Rantoul, Mahomet and Champaign Urbana, said it had earnings of 88 cents per share beating Wall Street expectations of 41 cents per share. Revenue topped $58.6 million while expenses came in at $54.5 million, also beating expectations.



(Mahomet-jm) -- The Mahomet Seymour School District is signing an agreement with the Mahomet Police Department to have a school resource officer. Superintendent Lindsey Hall talks about the agreement and how it has benefited the district…



Mahomet Seymour Schools Superintendent Lindsey Hall.


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