News Headlines – April 20, 2018

April 20th, 2018

The Latest

(Undated) — Here’s the latest news: There’s another candidate in the race for Illinois governor. A federal court says the Trump administration can’t withhold federal grant money from sanctuary cities. Illinois’ unemployment rate is at its lowest point in eleven years. Prosecutors in Putnam County want more time to start their murder case against the man accused of killing his sister-in-law.

>>Putnam County Prosecutors Want Delay In Murder Trial

(Hennepin, IL) — Prosecutors in Putnam County are asking for more time in making their murder case against a man accused of killing his sister-in-law. State’s Attorney Christina Mennie yesterday told a judge that she needs more time to gather more evidence in the case against Clifford Andersen Jr. Police say he beat Deborah Dewey to death back in 2016, but they still aren’t saying why. Andersen’s lawyers said the case has been pending for more than a year and a half, and they want the trial to begin sooner rather than later. The case is now set to begin in July.

>>Sam McCann Announces Third Party Bid For Governor

(Springfield, IL) — There’s another candidate in the race for Illinois governor. West central Illinois state Senator Sam McCann yesterday announced that he is running for governor in the Conservative Party. But Illinois Senate Republican Leader Bill Brady yesterday said McCann isn’t a true conservative. Other politicos at the statehouse say McCann is looking to run not to win, but to siphon votes from Governor Rauner in this fall’s race against J.B. Pritzker.

>>Federal Court Rules For Sanctuary Cities

(Chicago, IL) — Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel says he wants his money. The mayor yesterday told reporters that he expects the Trump administration to pay up after a federal appeals court sided with sanctuary cities in a fight over federal grant dollars. The three-judge panel said the Trump White House overstepped its bounds by creating new requirements for cities to collect grants that had already been awarded.

>>Illinois Unemployment Rate Falls Again

(Springfield, IL) — You have to go back eleven years to find the last time Illinois’ unemployment rate hit four-point-six-percent. The state’s Department of Employment Security yesterday released its latest report. Illinois’ unemployment is still a bit higher than the national rate of four-point-one percent. IDES says the state added 39-thousand jobs over the past year.


>>WIU Faculty Members Okay Strike Authorization

(Macomb, IL) — Teachers and professors at Western Illinois University could walk out of their classrooms before the end of the month. The union that represents faculty members at the school yesterday said they’ve approved an authorization to go on strike. Faculty members want a new contract. They’ve been talking with university leaders about a new contract since 2016. Union faculty members say they’re planning a rally at the Macomb campus on Monday to try to drum up support.

News Headlines – April 19, 2018

April 19th, 2018

The Latest

(Undated) — Here’s the latest news: One central Illinois congressman says there is potential in the federal farm bill. Illinois’ Tammy Duckworth could be bringing more changes to the U.S. Senate. A pair of Decatur coaches are pleading not guilty to child sex charges. Investigators say they’re looking for the cause of a fire at a western Illinois chemical plant.

>>Rodney Davis Applauds Farm Bill First Step

(Washington, DC) — Central Illinois congressman Rodney Davis says he’s hopeful the reforms in the new federal farm bill will become law. Davis yesterday said the massive package that covers both subsidies to farmers and nutritional assistance programs cleared its first hurdle in Congress. Davis says new work requirements and exemptions for cars and savings accounts should help streamline the food stamp program across the country.

>>U.S. Senate May Allow Babies After Illinois’ Duckworth Delivers Daughter

(Washington, DC) — The U.S. senate may soon have the Duckworth rule. The nation’s upper chamber is considering a rule change to allow babies on the floor after Illinois’ junior U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth delivered her second daughter earlier this month. Senators are required to be on the floor to vote, and Duckworth says there may be times when she has to both be a mom and cast a vote. Senate leaders want to be accommodating, but some Senators aren’t so sure about allowing children on the floor on Capitol Hill.

>>Not Guilty Pleas From Decatur Coaches On Sex Charges

(Decatur, IL) — A pair of coaches in Decatur are pleading not guilty to charges that they tried to groom a child for sex. Macon County prosecutors yesterday charged 26-year-old Dylan Nunn and 26-year-old Matthew Krause with indecent solicitation of a child and grooming. Nunn is a school security guard with Decatur Public Schools, and both men are coaches in the district. Both are due back in court next month.

>>Judge Hears Arguments Against Moving Ahead With Schock Trial

(Chicago, IL) — Aaron Schock’s lawyers say the former congressman shouldn’t have to face federal charges based on the rules of Congress, but prosecutors say much of their case has nothing to do with House rules. A federal judge in Chicago yesterday listened to arguments from Schock’s legal team as to why the trial on misspending and lying on federal forms shouldn’t even begin. Schock’s lawyers say federal prosecutors want to use Congressional rules to lock him up. But prosecutors say many of their charges cover actual crimes, like falsifying tax returns.

>>Henry County Chemical Plant Fire Under Investigation

(Orion, IL) — Investigators in Henry County say they’re still looking for what started a fire at a chemical plant in Orion. No one was hurt in the fire yesterday at the Helena Chemical facility, though a storage house was destroyed. Orion Fire Chief Doug Smutzer says they got the call about the fire at noon yesterday. Helena Chemical is a farm chemical plant, and the storage building that burned had just been loaded with pesticides. Smutzer is not saying when he hopes to find the cause of the fire.

News Headlines – April 18, 2018

April 18th, 2018

The Latest

(Undated) — Here’s the latest news: Illinois cities could soon have more power over what guns people can own. The husband of a murdered DCFS worker wants an explanation from Democrats at the capitol. Shoppers in Bloomington and Decatur could soon have one less choice. Federal prosecutors in Illinois want first crack at four central Illinois men charged with illegally having a machine gun.

>>Illinois Senate Panel Okays Local Assault Weapons Bans

(Springfield, IL) — Illinois cities are a step closer to being able to control who owns which guns inside their borders. An Illinois Senate panel yesterday approved a plan to give local governments the power to adopt local assault weapons bans. The idea is to pre-empt statewide control that took effect with Illinois’ 2013 concealed carry law. Gun control supporters say they want local governments to be able to decide for themselves.

>>Family of Murdered DCFS Worker Wants Answers From Lawmakers

(Springfield, IL) — The husband of a murdered DCFS worker wants to know why keeping people out of prison is more important than his wife. Don Knight went to Springfield yesterday to ask statehouse Democrats to explain themselves. Quad Cities state Rep. Tony McCombie says Democrats killed the plan inspired by Knight’s wife’s death last week because it would increase prison sentences for people convicted of attacking a state employee. Knight asked lawmakers to tell him why they’d vote against the idea. Pam Knight died in February after lingering in a coma since September of last year after a brutal beating while checking on a child on a DCFS field call.

>>Mall Owner Preps For Bergner’s Closing In Bloomington, Decatur

(Bloomington, IL) — Shoppers in Bloomington and Decatur could soon have one less choice. CBL Properties, which owns the malls in Bloomington and in Forsyth, which is just outside of Decatur, yesterday said it is planning for the Bergner’s stores at each to close. Bergner’s parent company, Bon-Ton Stores, is in the middle of a bankruptcy case. Bergner’s is just the latest store to close at the mall in Bloomington. The Eastland Mall also lost its Macy’s and JC Penny store last year.

>>Ford County Terror Suspects To Face Trial In Illinois First

(Urbana, IL) — Three central Illinois terror suspects will likely face a weapons trial in Illinois before heading to Minnesota to face bombing charges. Federal prosecutors in Urbana yesterday asked for a 60-day delay in the case in Minnesota against Michael Hari, Joe Morris, and Michael McWhorter. They are charged with planting a bomb at a mosque last summer. The three, along with Ellis Mack, are charged with felony possession of a machine gun in Illinois. Prosecutors want to take that case to trial first.

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>>Winter Won’t Let Go In Northwestern Illinois

(Davenport, IA) — Forecasters are once again talking about winter storms in northwestern Illinois. The National Weather Service is leaving a winter storm warning and a winter weather advisory in effect for folks from the Quad Cities to the northern corner of the state until this evening. Forecasters are warning of heavy snow at times. The worst of the snow is expected in the Quad Cities during the drive to work and school this morning.

News Headlines – April 17, 2018

April 18th, 2018

The Latest

(Undated) — Here’s the latest news: The latest report into the Legionnaires’ outbreak at Illinois’ veterans home in Quincy isn’t answering all of the lingering questions. Former Governor Rod Blagojevich isn’t getting a new trial or a new sentence. Prosecutors in Dewitt County are pressing ahead with adult charges against a teen accused of shooting another teen in the stomach. Illinois Conservation Police say they’ve arrested two teens for shooting and killing five pelicans in Jasper County.

>>Quincy Legionnaires’ Report Leaves Questions Lingering

(Springfield, IL) — The latest report into the Legionnaires’ outbreak at Illinois’ veterans home in Quincy isn’t answering all of the lingering questions that lawmakers have. The report, released yesterday, says Governor Bruce Rauner’s office did all it could to share information about the outbreak back in 2015. But lawmakers in Springfield say the report is little more than damage control. Thirteen people have died at the home, and dozens of others have gotten sick with Legionnaires’. The report also hints at cases that may have gone unreported before 2015.

>>U.S. Supreme Court Again Turns Down Blagojevich Appeal

(Washington, DC) — Former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich is not getting a new trial or a new sentence. The United States Supreme Court yesterday turned down the imprisoned governor’s latest appeal. Blagojevich’s lawyers wanted the court to once again weigh in on when the back and forth of politics becomes a crime. The court refused to hear the case. There are some who wonder if Blagojevich will try for a presidential pardon. Governor Blagojevich appeared on “Celebrity Apprentice” with President Trump back in 2010.

>>Dewitt County 17-Year-Old To Face Adult Charges In Shooting

(Clinton, IL) — Prosecutors in DeWitt County are pushing ahead with adult charges against a 17-year-old who police say shot another teen in the stomach. Seventeen-year-old Michael Cummins is still being held in the jail in Clinton on 50-thousand-dollars bond. Police in Farmer City are still not saying why they think Cummins shot another teen in the stomach last week. The victim is expected to live.

>>Two Teens Arrested For Shooting Pelicans In Jasper County

(Newton, IL) — Two underage teenagers are the main suspects in the shooting deaths of five pelicans in eastern Illinois. The state’s Conservation Police yesterday said that the two teens are facing a series of charges. Investigators say it appears the two chased the birds with some sort of vehicle, then shot them with a rifle. Jasper County authorities filed the charges on Saturday.

>>The Quad Cities’ Congresswoman Has Huge Monetary Lead

(Washington, DC) — The Quad Cities’ congresswoman likely doesn’t have to worry about an onslaught of TV attack ads this fall. Congresswoman Cheri Bustos’ latest campaign reports show that she has a huge advantage in campaign cash. Bustos on Sunday reported raising over 254-thousand-dollars in March. She has just under three-million-dollars in her campaign account. Her opponent, Republican Bill Fawell, says he’s raised about eleven-thousand-dollars for his race so far.

News Headlines – April 16, 2018

April 16th, 2018

The Latest 

(Undated)  —  Here’s the latest news:  The western part of Illinois will see some of the coldest temperatures this morning. There is a push at the Illinois Capitol to separate Southern Illinois University’s campuses in Edwardsville and Carbondale. Macon County Sheriff Howard Buffett’s foundation is helping the county start a new recycling center. A former Illinois first lady is furious with the current governor over a Snapchat filter. 

>>Hard Freeze Likely Across Western Illinois 

(Davenport, IA)  —  Maybe its a good thing that many Illinois farmers don’t have a crop in the ground. The National Weather Service is warning of a hard freeze with this morning’s cold temperatures. Forecasts say most of western Illinois will start the day in the 20s. Folks near Galesburg will see the coldest weather. But the Weather Service says just about everyone in the state will see very cold temperatures to start the day. 

>>Lawmaker Wants To Officially Split SIU’s Campuses 

(Springfield, IL)  —  If Southern Illinois University Trustees won’t do it, then perhaps Illinois lawmakers will. There is a push at the statehouse in Springfield to separate SIU’s campuses in Carbondale and Edwardsville. The plan from state Rep Jay Hoffman would give SIU-E its own board of trustees. The legislation follows last week’s decision from SIU trustees not to shift five million-dollars from Carbondale to Edwardsville to track a shift in students. 

>>Marshall County Eying Higher Fees, 100 Thousand-Dollar Haul 

(Lacon, IL)  —  Leaders in Marshall County are looking to spend some money to possibly bring some more money in. The county board last week took up a plan to spend 14 thousand-dollars on a consultant who would help figure out how the county can raise fees to bring in more money. Consultant Bruce DeLashmit said he’ll help Marshall County figure out how to bill for the actual cost of the services that the county provides.  DeLashmit says that often means counties will see seven times the return on his fee. That’d be about 98 thousand-dollars for Marshall County. 

>>Howard Buffett Helps Macon County Start Recycling Center 

(Decatur, IL)  —  Howard Buffett is once again stepping-up for the Decatur area. The Macon County Board last week approved a plan to accept a million-dollar donation from Buffett’s private foundation to help build a recycling center. Buffett’s money will buy the land, the state of Illinois will pay for the rest. Buffett is the son of Warren Buffett, and is one of Decatur’s greatest philanthropists. He is also the county’s sheriff. 

>>Patti Blagojevich Angry With Rauner Snapchat Filter Of Jailed Husband 

(Chicago, IL)  —  A former Illinois first lady is furious with the state’s governor over a Snapchat filter. Patti Blagojevich last week demanded that Governor Rauner’s campaign take down a Snapchat filter than allows people to add former Governor Rod Blagojvich’s hair and inmate number to their photos. The filter also takes a shot at Democrat J.B. Pritzker for his conversations with the jailed former governor. Patti Blagojevich says the filter is insulting and hurtful for her teenaged daughters.