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News Headlines – September 19, 2017

September 18th, 2017

The Latest

(Undated) — Here’s the latest news: Governor Bruce Rauner says there are big things on the horizon for Illinois’ relationship with China. Illinois lawmakers will have to decide if they want to override the governor on a plan that could add more stress to Illinois’ already shaky police and fire pensions. One of the Quad Cities’ former congressmen is making a pick in the Democratic race for governor. Abraham Lincoln is coming back to Peoria, kinda.

Governor Rauner Ends Asia Trip With Chinese University Visit

(Hangzhou, China) — There could soon be more Chinese students at the University of Illinois, and more U of I students in China. Governor Bruce Rauner ended his Asian trade mission yesterday with a visit to Zhejiang University to highlight the school’s partnership with the U of I. Zhejiang offers an engineering degree in cooperation with the U of I. The governor said he sees that partnership as one of the ‘great things’ on the horizon for Illinois’ relationship with China.

Governor Vetoes Plan That Would’ve Expanded Police, Fire Pension Transfers

(Springfield, IL) — Illinois lawmakers will have to decide if they want to override the governor on a pension plan that could add more stress to the already fragile police and fire pension programs in Illinois. Governor Rauner last week vetoed a proposal to allow downstate police officers and firefighters to transfer up to six years of credit into their pensions. The governor said many downstate police and fire pension plans are in danger of running out of money. He said adding more stress on to those retirement funds could break them.

Phil Hare Endorsing Chris Kennedy For Governor

(Moline, IL) — One of the Quad Cities former Democratic congressmen is making a pick in the race for governor. Former Congressman Phil Hare yesterday gave his endorsement to Chris Kennedy. Hare said in a statement that Kennedy has the right combination of ‘experience’ and ‘progressive values’ to lead Illinois. Kennedy is running behind in a crowded, and competitive five man field for governor on the Democratic ticket.

No One Arrested In Early Sunday Shooting In Carbondale

(Carbondale, IL) — Investigators in southern Illinois say the gunman and victim in a Carbondale shooting know each other. Carbondale Police say no one is in custody after an early morning shooting yesterday sent a man to a St. Louis hospital. Police say the shooting happened just before 2:30 a.m. yesterday at a home in the 400 block of Cherry Court. Investigators aren’t saying what led to the shooting or if an arrest may be coming soon.

Peoria’ Giant Lincoln Statue Almost Ready

(Peoria, IL) — The Peoria riverfront is about to get a new resident. Local leaders expect to unveil a giant Abraham Lincoln statue at the riverfront tomorrow. The 31-foot-tall, 19-ton painted bronze sculpture of Abraham Lincoln has spent the past year in Chicago, and its next stop is the Peoria Riverfront Museum. Museum President John Morris said Lincoln delivered one of his most famous anti-slavery speeches in the city, so it’s fitting that Lincoln’s statue get a new home in Peoria.

OBITUARY – Dora Lee Gibbs

September 18th, 2017

Dora Lee Gibbs, age 94, of Princeton died on Wednesday, September 13th in Walnut.

Funeral services will be at 2:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 23, at the Princeton Bible Church. The family will receive friends one hour prior to the services. Burial will take place after the services in Oakland Cemetery in Princeton. Cremation has been accorded.

Arrangements for Dora Lee Gibs, age 94, of Princeton are through Norberg Memorial Home in Princeton.

News Headlines – September 18, 2017

September 18th, 2017

The Latest

(Undated) — It looks like Chicago has passed a grisly milestone for murders this year. A gas tax increase may be coming in Illinois. Illinois Republicans say 2018 is their election to lose. Stark County workers are still asking for raises even as the county looks to be running out of money.

Report: Chicago Saw 500th Murder On Sunday

(Chicago, IL) — Chicago is once again marking a grisly murder milestone. “The Chicago Tribune” yesterday reported that the city saw its 500th murder of the year yesterday. The paper says a man who was shot to death on Chicago’s west side was the 500th person to be killed in the city since January. But that’s actually down from a year ago. By this point in 2016, the paper says 538 people had been murdered.

Illinois Gas Tax Increase A Possibility

(Springfield, IL) — A lot of people are talking about a gas tax increase in Illinois, but no one is saying how high the price may go. A number of reports over the weekend said top lawmakers may meet this week to talk about a gas tax increase as a way to pay for new road construction. Right now, Illinois’ gas tax is one of the highest in the country, just over 34-cents a gallon. The spokespeople for Illinois’ legislative leaders all said they don’t have any specifics about a new gas tax proposal.

Illinois Republicans Rally The Faithful At Quad Cities Reagan Barbecue

(Milan, IL) — Illinois Republicans think they can win in 2018. More to the point, Republicans leaders told the crowd at yesterday’s Reagan Barbecue in the Quad Cities that they will win next year. Attorney General candidate Erica Harold headlined the picnic in Milan [[ my-lun ]]. She said with Lisa Madigan now out of the race, she expects to be able to have a much bigger impact on the statewide ticket in 2018.

Assault Injures Quad Cities Prison Guard

(East Moline, IL) — A female prison guard is recovering after an attack at the East Moline Correctional Center. The Illinois Department of Corrections yesterday said the female guard was attacked Saturday, she was treated and released from a local hospital. No one is offering specifics on what happened. A DOC spokeswoman said the inmate has been transferred and the prison was placed on lock down Saturday because of the attack.

Stark County Leaders Press For Raises, As County Finances Dwindle

(Toulon, IL) — Stark County may not have enough money to pay sheriff deputies at the end of the month. But the county’s engineer is asking for a five-percent raise for his highway crews. Stark County leaders say they’re trying to balance the requests for raises with the reality that the county is facing a fiscal dilemma. The county board will host a special meeting next week to try and figure out a solution before Stark County runs out of money.

News Headlines – September 15, 2017

September 14th, 2017

The Latest

(Undated) — Here’s the latest news: Governor Rauner is handling Illinois’ sales pitch to Amazon himself. The Quad Cities is losing one of its tax breaks for businesses. Democrat Chris Kennedy is picking a Chicago activist as his running mate in the race for governor. Illinois is looking for a new poet laureate.

Governor Rauner Talks To Amazon About New HQ

(Chicago, IL) — Governor Bruce Rauner is personally leading the sales pitch to bring Amazon’s new headquarters to the state. The governor’s office yesterday said the governor reached out himself to speak with Amazon executives about a second headquarters for the online retail giant. Developers in Chicago are already pitching specific sites. Rauner’s office didn’t offer any details about the governor’s proposal to land the new roughly five-billion-dollar headquarters and the 50 thousand jobs that’d come with it.

Illinois Denies The Quad Cities An Enterprise Zone

(Springfield, IL) — The Quad Cities is not on the list of Illinois Enterprise Zone communities. The state’s Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity yesterday approved six Enterprise Zones across the state, but not in Moline or Rock Island. Henry Marquard with the Quad Cities Chamber said the loss of the tax incentives included in the zone could hurt the Quad Cities when it comes to luring new businesses. State officials say the Quad Cities didn’t score low enough on the poverty or job loss scale to qualify for a new round of incentives.

Chris Kennedy Picks Chicago Activist For Lt. Governor

(Chicago, IL) — Another Chicago Democrat is getting into the race for Illinois lieutenant governor. NBC 5 Chicago last night reported that Chris Kennedy will name Chicago activist Ra Joy as his running mate today. Joy runs CHANGE Illinois, a good government group from Chicago. Kennedy is that latest Democrat in the race for Illinois governor to choose a running mate from Chicago.

Howard Buffett To Become Macon County Sheriff

(Decatur, IL) — Macon County could soon have the richest sheriff in America. County leaders tomorrow are expected to swear-in Howard Buffett, the child of Warren Buffett and a frequent donor to law enforcement efforts in Decatur, as Macon County’s next sheriff. Retiring Sheriff Thomas Schneider picked Buffett to be his replacement until next fall’s election. Buffett worked at ADM for years, and has spent millions of his own dollars to support law enforcement projects in and around Decatur.

Illinois Needs New Poet Laureate

(Springfield, IL) — Illinois is in the market for a new poet laureate. Bradley University Professor Kevin Stein announced this week that he’s stepping down as the state’s top poet in January. Stein has served as poet laureate of Illinois since 2003. He’s the first laureate in Illinois who did not have a lifetime appointment. Governor Rauner’s office yesterday said they will form a committee to search for a new poet laureate in the coming months.

News Headlines – September 14, 2017

September 13th, 2017

The Latest

(Undated) — Here’s the latest news: Cook County’s Toni Preckwinkle says she has work to do to save her soda tax. Illinois is seeing more and more gambling money from video gaming machines. Peoria is close to raising taxes to pay for a new hot dog restaurant. The central Illinois deputy charged with the attempted murder of his wife is not being paid while in jail.

Cook County President Acknowledges Work To Save Soda Tax

(Chicago, IL) — Cook County’s board president says she has some work to do to save her soda tax. Toni Preckwinkle yesterday admitted that she’ll have to convince county leaders to stick with the incredibly unpopular penny-per-ounce tax on sweetened drinks. A new poll shows almost 90-percent of Cook County voters don’t like the tax. A vote to roll the tax back could come next month.

Illinois Riverboats Just Barely Ahead Of Video Gaming Machines

(Springfield, IL) — The state of Illinois is almost making as much money from the new video gaming machines as from the state’s riverboat casinos. A legislative commission yesterday released the latest gambling figures. The numbers show that more and more people continue to play more and more video gaming machines. The state saw one-point-two billion dollars in taxes from video gaming last year. That’s just under the one-point-four billion that Illinois’ riverboat casinos generated. The report says while more people are playing the video machines, attendance at the state’s casinos continues to slide.

Peoria Council Takes Steps To Raise Taxes For Portillo’s

(Peoria, IL) — City leaders in Peoria are taking steps to raise taxes to pay for a new hot dog restaurant. The Peoria City Council last night okayed hearings, set for November, to approve a special one-percent sales tax increase to pay for a new Portillo’s to be built on the city’s west side. If city leaders okay the tax increase, shoppers in Peoria would pay between 10 and 11 cents on the dollar in sales taxes.

Former McLean County Board Boss Gets Prison Time

(Chicago, IL) — The former head of McLean County government is heading to prison for a year for work he didn’t do in the private sector. Matt Sorensen apologized yesterday, just before a judge sentenced him to a year and a day in federal prison. Sorensen pleaded guilty in November to scamming a consulting firm out of almost a half-million-dollars in work that he never performed for State Farm.

Macon County Deputy Suspended Amid Attempted Murder Case

(Decatur, IL) — A central Illinois deputy will not collect a paycheck while he sits in a jail cell on attempted murder charges. Macon County Sheriff Thomas Schneider yesterday said that Deputy Markes Rodgers is on unpaid leave as prosecutors push attempted murder charges against him. Investigators in Christian County say Rodgers fired several shots at his wife after a fight over the weekend. Rodgers then barricaded himself in his house for nine hours. Rodgers has been with the Macon County Sheriff’s Office for more than ten years.