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The first case of the Omicron COVID-19 variant is in Chicago

(Chicago-jm) – The Illinois Department of Public Health along with the Chicago Department of Public Health are announcing the first case of the Omicron COVID-19 variant. The individual is a Chicago resident and was a contact of another Omicron COVID positive case from another state. IDPH says the individual is fully vaccinated and had their booster shot and did not require hospitalization.


(Springfield-jm) – As COVID-19 cases increase, Governor J-B Pritzker says the state is taking steps to tackle the problem. It’s mostly the delta variant leading the surge, says the Governor, who has been talking with hospital leaders around the state…



Illinois Governor J-B Pritzker. Governor Pritzker says they are also trying to address the shortage of healthcare workers. The latest daily total includes more than 7 thousand new cases and 78 additional deaths. That’s the highest one day death toll since last February. Locally, Vermilion County reported 107 new cases and 1 additional death bringing their total number of cases to 16,452 and deaths to 215. Champaign County reported 227 new cases and 2 additional deaths bringing their total number of cases to 31,227 and deaths to 217.


(Springfield-jm) – Illinois lawmakers are proposing legislation regarding the COVID-19 vaccine. Teutopolis Representative Adam Niemerg (knee-merg) has introduced the “Freedom Act,” making it unlawful to discriminate against someone because of their vaccine status…



State Representative Adam Neimerg. On Monday, Representative Jonathan Carroll of Northbrook introduced a bill requiring those who have not been vaccinated against COVID to pay for their own medical bills if they contract the virus.


(Onarga-tr) -- Onarga residents are celebrating the holidays this year by organizing with Gilman residents as both towns host Christmas parades back to back on December 18th. Onarga Christmas Parade Spokesperson Fred Walraven details how this came about…



Onarga Christmas Parade Spokesperson Fred Walraven, For more details or to inquire about parade entry, call Fred at 815-471-4576.


(Gibson City-jm) -- Gibson City police have released their recent activity report. On December 2nd, Bradley Orcutt of Urbana was arrested and charged with driving while revoked, open container of alcohol on public way and adult use cannabis in a motor vehicle. Also on December 2nd, Allen Burgin of Urbana was arrested on an in state warrant.



(Washington-jm) – Biofuel producers hurt by the pandemic should be getting some help soon from the USDA. Gary Crawford reports…




(Springfield-jm) – The state is launching a new 42 million dollar water assistance program for low income Illinoisans. The effort is for those facing disconnections or who have 250 dollars or more in overdue water and sewer bills. Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity Acting Director Sylvia Garcia says to qualify, applicants need to be making 200 percent of the poverty level or less…



Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity Acting Director Slyvia Garcia. Applications for water assistance and other programs are available online at: help illinois families dot com.


(Springfield-jm) -- Governor J-B Pritzker is announcing 94 million dollars in funding to improve public airports throughout Illinois. Combined with local funding, the investment will pay for 96 projects statewide, says the Governor…



Illinois Governor J-B Pritzker. Several local airports are receiving funding for projects. Central Illinois Regional Airport in Bloomington is receiving $3.7 million to rehabilitate the entrance road. Willard Airport in Savoy is receiving $2 million: $1.5 million to rehab the entrance road and employee parking lot and $500 thousand to rehab general aviation aprons. Vermilion Regional Airport in Danville is receiving $850 thousand: $350 thousand to rehab the entrance road and $500 thousand to upgrade the perimeter fence. Rantoul Aviation Center is receiving $200 thousand to acquire snow removal equipment. 


(Champaign-jm) -- The University of Illinois Police Department is investigating a robbery that took place early Sunday morning on campus. Officers say that between midnight and 2 a.m. a U of I student riding an electric scooter was confronted by a suspect on Peabody Drive between Fourth and Sixth Streets. The suspect displayed what the student believed to be a knife and demanded the student place his property on the ground. The student threw the scooter at the suspect and ran from the scene. No injuries were reported.


(Washington-jm) – Maintaining exports in a time of economic uncertainty will be a major key to the success of U.S. farmers in 2022.  Gary Crawford reports…



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