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Candidates hopeful to run for the Illinois General Assembly filed a lawsuit alleging violation of constitutional voting rights

(Springfield-jm) – Candidates hopeful to run for the Illinois General Assembly filed a lawsuit alleging violation of constitutional voting rights resulting from recent changes in the rules for slating candidates to fill vacancies. Leslie Collazo is a plaintiff in the lawsuit filed in Sangamon County Circuit Court. The defendants include officials from the Illinois State Board of Elections and Attorney General Kwame Raoul. There are 78 active statehouse races affected by the new law. As an alternative to a primary election, Illinois law allowed for a party to get its candidates on the ballot for General Assembly vacancies by the party slating process. The process requires the candidates to get a certain number of public signatures on nominating petitions. Those signatures may be objected to on grounds of the new law, and the state elections board plans to hear those objections and make a ruling despite being sued. Collazo said the lawsuit goes after the legislature’s process in passing the law but it also says “legislation that affects any stage of the election process implicates the right to vote.”



(Iroquois County-jm) – A Cissna Park man is dead and an Ashkum woman is hurt after a crash in Iroquois County on Monday morning. Just before 9:40 a.m., emergency crews responded to the accident at 1600 East and 1900 North. An investigation suggested that 77-year-old Rodney Windhorn of Cissna Park was traveling south on 1600 East. Meanwhile Rhonda Kollmann, 66 of Ashkum, was traveling east. Windhorn failed to stop at the fully marked intersection, hitting Kollmann’s van. The Iroquois County Sheriff’s Office said Windhorn was pronounced dead at the scene. Kollmann was hurt and taken to a nearby hospital, then ultimately airlifted to another one for further treatment.


(Paxton–jc)  The new playground equipment in Pells Park Paxton has been in operation for several weeks. The new structure has seen a positive response from area children and families. One additional piece that is coming to the playground equipment at Pells Park is a swing set for those with “special needs” says Paxton Mayor Bill Ingold...



Paxton Mayor Bill Ingold. The Pells Park Firetruck playground equipment has been re-vamped and will also return to Pells Park soon. Mulch and a sidewalk will also be placed in that area of the park in Paxton. 



(Loda-jm) – Changes could be coming to an intersection in Loda to make it safer. Loda village officials are working with IDOT to limit parking along Route 45 near Murdock’s after an accident last month left two people dead. Officials say cars parked along the road make it harder to see oncoming traffic.


(Joliet–jc)  – After a year of bargaining, the nurses’ union in Joliet has reached a tentative agreement with Ascension St. Joseph. The Illinois Nurses Association said Monday that the union will review and vote on the new contract over the next two weeks. According to the union, the new deal ensures that nurses will only be pulled to areas of the hospital outside their specialty on a voluntary basis. 


(Moultrie County–jc) A manhunt for a Moultrie County man that lasted nearly 24 years has come to an end with his arrest. The U.S. Marshals Service announced that 72-year-old Herman Carroll was located in Branson, Missouri, after the Great Lakes Regional Fugitive Task Force received a lead of his whereabouts.Carroll was wanted on sexual assault charges that accuse him of sexually assaulting a 12-year-old girl in 2000. He posted bail, but never appeared in court to face the charges.


(Buckley–jc)  –  Maintenance projects will continue this Spring and Summer at the two schools location in Buckley. The Parent-Teachers organization at St John's Lutheran School in Buckley have raised around 20 thousand dollars of a 60 thousand dollar goal to replace the original bleachers in the school’s gym. At Christ Lutheran High School, a new steel roof and tuckpointing is part of the upgrades at the high school says Christ  Lutheran High School Executive Director Sandy Spitz…


Christ Lutheran High School and St John's Lutheran School Executive Director Sandy Spitz.


(Springfield-jm) – The University of Illinois Flash Index for April, a measure of Illinois’ economy, moved slightly higher for April from 102.8 in March to 103. Illinois tax receipts, an important building block of the Flash Index, were strong. Individual income tax receipts were up in inflation-adjusted terms by over 16%, the second highest monthly total on record. The national and state unemployment rates ticked up but remained at low levels. Illinois’ rate was nearly a percentage point above the national rate.


(Washington-jm) – Large soybean supplies will bring lower prices. Gary Crawford reports…



(Undated-jm) – There are several meetings around the area tonight. At 6 tonight Rantoul village leaders are expected to approve a downtown water and wastewater infrastructure replacement project, approve the replacement of a water truck and discuss water, gas and electric rates. At 7 tonight in Paxton city leaders are expected to approve a quote for motor fuel tax projects, amend the appropriation ordinance and consider an acknowledgement resolution. In St. Joe tonight at 7, village leaders are expected to approve bids for street, sidewalk, curb and gutter projects in the village.


(Springfield-jm) – Governor J.B. Pritzker says the message being sent by a memo directing state agencies to anticipate $800 million less to spend than what he proposed is that he will not sign an unbalanced budget.  In February, Pritzker proposed spending $52.7 billion. Last week, his administration sent agency directors a memo saying the $1 billion in tax increases he proposed aren’t popular and to anticipate they won’t be approved. Included in the pushback Pritzker said he’s heard about his proposed tax increases were those that doubled the tax on sports betting companies for an estimated $200 million in new revenue.Another measure he proposed in February impacts business loss deductions for an estimated $526 million. Other tax increases included capping the discount retailers get for collecting and remitting sales taxes worth $101 million and adjustments to the individual income tax standard deduction worth $93 million. The Illinois House and Senate return today. They must pass a balanced budget with simple majorities by May 31.


(Urbana-jm) – Officials announced a jam-packed event lineup for this year’s Champaign County Fair. The fair will take place July 19-27 at the Champaign County Fairgrounds in Urbana. 2024’s Grandstand events will feature monster trucks, a rodeo, country music artists, and more.


(Paxton–dm) National Nursing Home Week is being observed May 20th thru    May 24th.  Jordan Duffin, Activity Director at Accolade Healthcare of Paxton Senior Living has more information.



Jordan Duffin, Activity Director at Accolade Healthcare of Paxton Senior Living.


(Champaign County-jm) – A Sunday afternoon crash in Champaign County left five people hurt, State Police said. State Troopers responded to a two-car crash around 3:18 p.m. on Sunday. It happened on U.S. Route 136 near County Road 900 East. Four people were taken to a local area hospital, and one person was airlifted, officials said. The road was closed and traffic was rerouted around 3:45 p.m. All lanes were open around 6 p.m.


(Rantoul–jc)  With all the baseball, softball, soccer and football being played at the Rantoul Sports Complex, officials in Rantoul are also planning for several summertime “community events.”  Rantoul Sports Complex Director of Operations Ryan Reid says they are bringing back their “Touch a Truck” event…



Rantoul Sports Complex Director of Operations Ryan Reid


(Roberts–jc)  Plans for a “fun” Day in one Ford County town continue. The 20-24 Roberts Fun Day is set for July 20th at the Roberts Gym area. A Vendor and Craft fair starts the day at 8-30am. A breakfast, silent auction, Inflatables, Bing0, baking competition and live entertainment also hilite the day's activities. The annual parade steps off at 11-30. The band “Seasonal Disorder'' plays at Roberts Fun Day from 7pm to 10pm.


(Springfield–jc)  The Illinois Department of Natural Resources and the Illinois Prescribed Fire Council are joining forces to encourage all prescribed fire practitioners to “map your burn” and contribute to the annual Illinois Prescribed Fires Accomplished Map. Officials said prescribed fire, also known as Rx fire or controlled burning, stands as the most effective management practice for maintaining and restoring vital fire-dependent ecosystems. They said controlled burn plays an important role in reducing fuel loads and mitigating the risk of bushfires and wildfires.



(Gibson City–dm) One Ford County town is set for summer car cruises. Gibson City is gearing up for their summer car cruises that take place on the 3rd Friday of each month.  Gibson City Chamber of Commerce Spokesperson Susie Tongate says the events run from May through August...



Gibson Area Chamber of Commerce Spokesperson Susie Tongate.  Besides the car cruise there will be Food vendors and free music.


(The Center Square) – Legislation in the Illinois General Assembly would make it more difficult to qualify for a rebate on an electric vehicle purchase.  In January 2023, rebates of up to $4,000 for EVs and $1,500 for electric motorcycles became available in Illinois. In the first round, Illinois' EV rebate program cost taxpayers $19 million. That is nearly 4,900 purchasers of EVs getting $4,000 rebates. Of those, only about 10% were low-income individuals, despite the program prioritizing such applicants. Among those granted rebates, nearly 300 were luxury models costing up to $125,000. The second round of the program was budgeted at $12 million.  

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