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More than one million people in Illinois have now received the new COVID-19 bivalent booster shot

(Springfield-jm) – More than one million people in Illinois have now received the new COVID-19 bivalent booster shot. Vaccination rates have increased recently, as the latest booster protects against the most prevalent variant, Omicron. Illinois Department of Public Health Director Dr. Sameer Vohra recommends everyone eligible get the shot…



Illinois Public Health Director Dr. Sameer Vohra. Vohra says kids ages 5 and up should get the booster as well, in light of a rise in RSV. The CDC rates 26 Illinois counties at an increased risk for COVID. The highest risk right now is in Warren, Knox and Saline Counties. Locally, Ford and Champaign are at medium community level while Iroquois and Vermilion remain low.


(Chicago-jm) – Two Illinoisans have now died from the Monkeypox virus. The Chicago Department of Public Health announced the two deaths on Friday. Both were Chicago residents. Both of the individuals had multiple other health conditions, including weakened immune systems, and received a MPV diagnosis more than six weeks ago, and both had been hospitalized. The deaths of the two adults are unrelated to each other.


(Springfield-jm) – The Illinois Judicial Conference is laying out its strategic agenda for the next few years. The conference reviews court practices and suggests improvements in the administration of justice. Soon to be Chief Justice Mary Jane Theis (tice) says the new agenda reflects lessons learned during the pandemic, when remote proceedings became the norm…



Illinois Chief Justice Mary Jane Theis. Justice Theis says other goals include increasing accessibility to court proceedings, continuing to ensure adherence to the highest standards of professionalism and inviting more public engagement.


(Urbana-jm) – Governor J.B. Pritzker will make a campaign stop in Urbana tonight. The American Federation of Teachers 20-day nationwide get-out-the-vote bus tour will stop at the Illini Union for an event to mobilize voters ahead of the midterm elections. Governor Pritzker will be joined by Lt. Governor Juliana Stratton, Illinois State Representative Carol Ammons, Illinois State Senator Scott Bennett, Illinois Federation of Teachers president Dan Montgomery and AFT President Randi Weingarten.


(Champaign County-jm) – The Champaign County Sheriff’s Office announced on Friday that more than 22 pounds of marijuana, worth an estimated $100,000, were recently seized during a search of a home in Urbana Township. The Sheriff’s Office is also looking for two suspects in connection to that seizure. Officials said that in light of recent gun violence in Urbana Township, the Sheriff’s Office’s Special Enforcement Team was activated to conduct proactive patrols. During these patrols, authorities developed information about narcotics and weapons offenses at a home on Richard Drive. The information led authorities to obtain a search warrant for the home. The warrant was served on Wednesday. Authorities found no one inside at the time, but did find the marijuana, a small amount of cocaine, two handguns and an assault rifle. Two people who were listed as living at the home are wanted in connection to the drugs and weapons. They are Brandon Koehler and Branden Wells.


(Rantoul–jc)  Today’s WPXN Business of the Day today is Hardy’s Reindeer Ranch. Fall is a very busy time at the farm, just west of Rantoul. Reindeer tours, a mythical themed corn maze to pulled pork parfaits are some of the attractions at Hardy's Reindeer Ranch. Champaign resident Erika Holmes says Hardy's Reindeer Ranch was a destination to see corn, reindeer and more…



Visitor to Hardy’s Reindeer Ranch of Rantoul Erika Holmes of Champaign


(Rantoul-jm) – Coroner Duane Northrup is releasing the name of a Rantoul, Illinois woman who has died after being involved in a single motor vehicle crash occurring near the intersection of N. Maplewood Drive and Clark Street in Rantoul, Illinois at approximately 10:48 PM on October 20, 2022. Eleida Diaz-Rosales, 28, was pronounced dead at the scene at 8:15AM on October 21, 2022. Ms. Diaz-Rosales was reportedly the driver of a vehicle traveling on N. Maplewood Drive when her vehicle left the roadway and collided with a concrete barrier. Preliminary results from the autopsy performed at the Champaign County Coroner’s Office indicate Ms. Diaz-Rosales died from blunt force chest injuries she received during the crash. Toxicology results are pending and an inquest may be held at a later date.


(Champaign County-jm) – For the first time in seven months, home sales rose in Champaign County and surrounding areas.  This September marked the highest number of sales in 17 years with 288 homes sold. This is a 3.97% increase since the same time last year.


(Washington-jm) – Producers can now decide if they wish to elect either Agricultural Risk Coverage or Price Loss Coverage for this coming year. Rod Bain reports…



(Lake County-jm) – Lake County's State's Attorney Eric Rinehart believes the Pretrial Fairness Act allows prosecutors to argue why violent offenders should stay in jail and improve prosecutors' workload. This comes as the current court system allows people accused of crimes to pay a bond and be released before their trial. Rinehart says the new law will not only keep violent offenders detained by removing cash bail, but it will allow state attorneys to prove they are dangerous during the new detention hearing process. As a result, it sets prosecutors on an early path to prove the suspects are guilty later during a trial.


(Springfield-jm) – The State of Illinois is hosting its first vendor summit to teach the ins and outs of doing business with the state. Navigating state contracting and the procurement process can be daunting, but this vendor summit on November 10th aims to help answer any questions, says Illinois Department of Central Management Services Assistant Director Raven DeVaughn…



Illinois Department of Central Management Services Assistant Director Raven DeVaughn. The summit will feature several state agencies and include workshops on a variety of topics. It will be held in Springfield at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library. More information is available online at: illinois dot gov slash vendor summit.


(Urbana-jm) – Representatives for the owners of the former Champaign County Nursing Home say they can close the facility in as few as 60 days without permission from the County Board that sold them the home in 2019 under the agreement it remains a nursing home until 2028. Thus, the future of the area’s largest nursing home is left in limbo. The county unanimously vetoed University Rehab Real Estate LLC’s request on October 11 to amend the agreement and sell it to be made into a substance abuse treatment facility. Approval from the Illinois Department of Public Health would be needed, which is generally a 60-day process.


(Rantoul-jm) – A Rantoul business celebrated 60 years in business yesterday. Ott’s has been serving breakfast and lunch since opening in 1962. The restaurant is one of the oldest in the village and has only had 3 owners during the 6 decades.


(Rantoul–jc)-Hardy’s Reindeer Ranch west of Rantoul is the WPXN Business of the Day today. The local business attracts visitors from the area, but also around the state and nation. Yesterday, Hardys had visitors from Michigan, Indiana and Washington state.  Owner Mark Hardy says fall brings the maze, pumpkin splat pie and reindeer…



Hardy’s Reindeer  Ranch Owner Mark Hardy.  


(Champaign-jm) – Champaign Police are hoping security camera footage could help in more investigations. They’re pushing people to register their exterior cameras and security systems.  You can sign up on their website with their online system. Police said it could not only help lead to solutions but deter crime altogether. Registering your camera doesn’t give officers immediate access to your footage, they’ll contact you first.


(Champaign-jm) – As part of the City’s 2022 Concrete Street Improvements Project, the pavement on Western Avenue from Kirby Avenue to Chevy Chase Drive is being reconstructed. A and R Services will continue work on the City of Champaign’s project; weather permitting, Monday, October 24, 2022. Beginning on Monday, October 24, the northbound lane of Western Avenue will be closed between Kirby Avenue and Chevy Chase Drive. This section of Western Avenue will temporarily become one-lane, one-way southbound traffic only. Work on Western Avenue is scheduled to be completed by November 13 of this year.

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