WPXN Blog

(Springfield-jm) -- Governor JB Pritzker and Lt. Governor Juliana Stratton announced yesterday they will be running for re-election. As part of Monday's announcement, they released a video that highlights what they say are the strength of the state’s response to the COVID pandemic and J-B’s commitment to the people of Illinois.

 

 

(Springfield-jm) -- The State Board of Higher Education is releasing updated COVID-19 guidance for colleges this fall. The goal is to make it a safe transition back to class by maintaining several protocols, says Board Executive Director Ginger Ostro…

 

 

State Board of Higher Education Executive Director Ginger Ostro. It’s recommended that students and faculty who are not vaccinated wear a mask inside and also outside for crowded events. Ostro says they are encouraging schools to mandate the vaccine. More information about the college guidelines is available online at: ihbe dot org.

 

(Watseka-jm) -- The Iroquois County Public Health Department is announcing the Delta variant has been detected in the county. The health department announced 41 new cases over the past week. The health department says the Delta variant is 60 percent more contagious.

 

(Gibson City-jm) -- Wayne Link has been appointed the new street and alley superintendent in Gibson City. Link previously served as assistant superintendent and will be given a raise for the promotion.

 

 

(Springfield-jm) -- Illinois GOP lawmakers continue to take issue with the way the General Assembly approved the most recent state budget. The budget was brought before lawmakers in the middle of the night and voted on it within an hour of receiving it, says 53rd District State Senator Jason Barickman of Bloomington…

 

 

Senator Barickman also says the rush caused errors to be made that had to be fixed weeks later…

 

 

53rd District State Senator Jason Barickman of Bloomington.

 

 

(Undated-jm) -- Niche magazine has ranked the best counties in Illinois. The rankings are based on schools, cost of living, job opportunities and home values. Champaign County came in #4, Ford County #31, Iroquois County #63 and Vermilion County #70.

 

 

(Springfield-jm) -- Above average rainfall dominated recent days as we hear in the weekly crop report. Southern Illinois received the most rain, and Northern Illinois the least, but totals were still higher than normal. State Crop Statistician Mark Schleusener says 66 percent of soybeans are now blooming…

 

 

State Crop Statistician Mark Schleusener. 9 percent of corn is in the dough stage with 65 percent of the crop in good to excellent condition. The second cutting of alfalfa hay is now 87 percent complete and average statewide topsoil moisture is rated as 1 percent very short, 7 percent short, 69 percent adequate and 23 percent surplus.

(Springfield-jm) -- According to a recent WalletHub study, Illinois unemployment insurance claims are recovering at the 7th slowest week-over-week rate in the nation. According to WalletHub analyst Jill Gonzalez, Illinois’ June 11th full reopening was later than many other states, causing the land of Lincoln to fall behind in hiring back their workers. 

 

(Springfield-jm) -- A new study out of the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign finds that 2020 was a deadlier year than the previous five, even without COVID-19 numbers. The virus was one of the leading causes of death last year but U of I Computer Science Professor Sheldon Jacobson says they found numbers grew for other deaths as well…

 

 

U of I Computer Science Professor Sheldon Jacobson. While those 65 and older were most vulnerable during the pandemic, Jacobson says males between the ages of 15 and 64 were hit the hardest by other causes of death in 2020. He says it’s important to review these figures to address additional public health needs that arose during the pandemic and how they can be better treated in the future.

 

 

(Urbana-jm) -- An Urbana man is facing several charges after ramming a gate at the Champaign County Jail. Yevgeniy Nikolaev was arraigned on seven counts Monday. Those include Attempted Murder, Aggravated Assault, Criminal Damage, Possession of Stolen Vehicle, Aggravated DUI, Theft, Unlawful Vehicular Invasion. The potential penalty is a maximum of 80 years, he was appointed a public defender, and his bond continues at $2 million. 


(Vermilion County-jm) -- Vermilion County Coroner Jane McFadden has released the name of the victim of a kayaking accident on the Vermilion River in Oakwood Sunday. McFadden says the body of 27 year old Dustan Haase was recovered Monday morning.

 

(Springfield-jm) -- The CDC and the state has released some guidance for schools to reopen this fall for in person learning. 106th District State Representative Tom Bennett of Gibson City talks about the guidance…

 

 

Representative Bennett says the decision should be left to local districts…

 

 

 

106th District State Representative Tom Bennett of Gibson City.

 

 

(Paxton-jm) -- The Paxton City Council has a new member. Mayor Bill Ingold appointed Paul Crutcher to fill the vacancy in Ward 2.

 

(Springfield-jm) -- Above average rainfall dominated recent days as we hear in the weekly crop report. Statewide average precipitation this past week was nearly two and a half inches, with Southern Illinois receiving the highest totals. Crop Statistician Mark Schleusener says corn is now silking on 77 percent of acres, well ahead of the five year average…

 

 

State Crop Statistician Mark Schleusener. 66 percent of soybeans are blooming and 20 percent are setting pods. The crop improved to 60 percent in good to excellent condition. Average statewide topsoil moisture is now rated as 1 percent very short, 7 percent short, 69 percent adequate and 23 percent surplus

 

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