The monarch butterfly population has declined by 90 percent over the last 20 years because of pesticides, parasites and loss of habitat. They're considered a sentinel species, whose fate mirrors that of many insects.
An effort has been under way to expand all pollinators' range by creating 1 million pollinator gardens by the end of the year. The National Pollinator Garden Network has registered 650,000 gardens across the U.S. designed to attract bees and butterflies.
Mary Phillips, senior director with the National Wildlife Federation's "Garden for Wildlife" program, said it gives people a daily connection to the natural world, whether they create a garden in the city or the country.
"Monarchs are something people identify. It's an iconic butterfly that many of us have experienced in our childhood," Phillips said. "So that's been an amazing motivator to get people to focus and engage around the pollinator issue."
In Illinois, some examples of pollinator plants include asters, bee balm, native roses, purple coneflower, blazing stars, beard tongue, bellflowers, hollyhocks, snapdragons, sunflowers, foxglove, mints, goldenrod, larkspur and milkweed.
Nine-year-old Pennsylvania boy, Kedar Narayan created a cell phone app - a game called "Pollinator for a Pet" - to teach people about native-plant pollinator gardens. He said kids have a big role to play in this effort.
"Without our pollinators, we wouldn't have our crops. And lawns, they destroy the pollinator habitats, and lawns just kind of pollute everything - even the environment," Narayan said. "And our weed killers, they pollute the air and our water."
The National Wildlife Federation said one-third of the food Americans eat is pollinated by bees, butterflies, moths, beetles and certain birds and bats - a cycle that accounts for $29 billion of the nation's food production.
Register your pollinator garden at Pollinator.org.
This week, Senator Tammy Duckworth placed a hold on two of President Trump’s nominees to lead offices at the EPA – Bill Wehrum and Dr. Michael Dourson – claiming they each have a track record of putting corporate profits ahead of public safety. Wehrum has been nominated to lead the EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation and Dourson, the EPA’s Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention. Duckworth is a member of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works. She released an op-ed piece claiming Wehrum has opposed the Renewable Fuel Standard, something she says it crucial to Midwestern economies. She says that standard supports more than 4-thousand jobs through biofuels usage and generates more than 5 billion dollars in economic impact. Duckworth, went on the offense with her voice instead of her pen when it came to Dourson. She pressed Dourson for answers about his past research that Duckworth says claimed petroleum coke (petcoke) is safe..... Click Here
Duckworth says Dourson’s research on petcoke was used to justify not cleaning up petcoke storage facilities on Chicago's Southeast side, leading to the presence of black dust which has been tied to high asthma rates and respiratory problems.
A Quincy veterans home where 12 people died from cases of Legionnaires' disease in recent years, has seen the issue resurface. There are pair of new cases at the Illinois Veterans Home in Quincy. One victim has died, but state veterans affairs officials believe that was the result of other factors. Right now the department isn't certain of the cause of the two new cases. The water at the facility is being tested and officials are keeping close tabs on residents to ensure they don't contract the disease.
The jobless rate in Illinois is holding steady. But the number of jobs in Illinois fell by more than 10,000. The Illinois Department of Employment Security reveals the unemployment last month stayed put at 5 percent. That mark is still lower than September of 2016, when the rate was 5.8 percent. IDES’s Bob Gough says that numbers were down in a few sectors.
Illinois landowners might not have oil fields beneath corn and soybean fields. Still, many opportunities exist to earn some additional cash by generating energy on farms throughout the state. Some officials from Illinois and Minnesota ventured to Germany earlier this year to see the role on-farm power plays in that country's effort to become energy self sufficient, including Minnesota Director of Agriculture Dave Frederickson;
Illinois Farm Bureau plans to host a Renewable Energy Roundtable on Tuesday, October 31st in Bloomington. Frederickson says his state will host the same two days later and worth the time for farmers and others to explore energy-generating opportunities;
The Farm Bureau energy seminar will feature farmers from Germany and Illinois who are generating energy and income on their farms. Contact your county Farm Bureau to find out how to attend the Renewable Energy Roundtable. It will run from 11:30 a-m to 4:30 p-m on the 31st and include an Octoberfest-style lunch.
In an announcement on their Facebook page, the Macomb Crimestoppers announced their latest Fugitive of the Week. Wendy R. Houston is being sought by the McDonough County Sheriff's Office on a charge related to Methamphetamine. Houston is described as 5 feet 9 inches tall, approximately 165 pounds, with brown hair and hazel eyes. You can see a photo of Houston with this story below. If you have any information about the whereabouts of Wendy R. Houston please contact Macomb Area Crimestoppers at 309-836-3222 or go to TipSubmit.com. Either way, you may remain anonymous and you may be entitled to a reward if your information leads to the capture of Wendy R. Hughes.
Abram J. Olson has been in business in Macomb for 2 and a half years at Country Financial where he sells Insurance. On this edition of the Regional Media BusinessCast we talk about the Insurance industry, misconceptions people have about their insurance. Abram also talks about the best piece of advice he's received after starting business here in Macomb and how well he's assimilated into the business community. Abram J. Olson is today's guest on the Regional Media BusinessCast.
Adam Scott from Parks and Recreation is now Adam Scott from Ghosted, Sunday nights on Fox at 7:30 Pm after The Simpsons. Adam joined Sean Patrick today to talk about Ghosted, his co-star Craig Robinson and reminisce about Parks and Recreation. Adam joined .me on the K100 Morning Show on Thursday.
Western Illinois University will play host to the OxFam Hunger Banquet on November 8th. The event, aimed at raising awareness of the problem of Hunger and Food Security affecting areas across the globe, will take place at the University Uniion Heritage Room from 5:30 Pm to 6:45 Pm. The event is sponsored by the Western Illinois University School of Agriculture the University Center for Internatiobal Studies. Reservations are required by November 3rd to attend the event and can be made by clicking here.
Two's company, four's a crowd. The Democratic race for Illinois Attorney General continues to draw new candidates. Chicago attorney and Chicago Park District Board of Commissioners President Jesse Ruiz has entered the race. He has worked as a partner at law firm Drinker Biddle & Reath for over 20 years. He also has made an impact in the educational realm, having served as interim CEO of Chicago Public Schools and chairman for the Illinois State Board of Education. Senator Kwame Raoul, State Rep. Scott Drury, and former chief administrator of the Civilian Office of Police Accountability in Chicago Sharon Fairley are also running on the Democratic ticket. Republican attorney Erika Harold stands alone so far on the GOP side.
The state of Illinois owes billions in unpaid bills and now its borrowing money to pay down some of that debt to avoid paying late fees and interest. The state went to the bond market this week to sell $1.5 billion to start getting out from underneath some of that debt. Governor Bruce Rauner says the state isn’t any closer to being fiscally responsible because the current budget isn’t balanced.
Anne Heche has returned to television for new counter-terrorism based series The Brave. Heche co-stars with Mike Vogel in the series that takes us inside a secretive government organization that teams Navy Seals with intelligence teams on the most difficult missions in the war on terror. The timely new series airs on NBC on Monday nights at 9 Pm. You can hear the passion Anne has for this series as she talks with our Sean Patrick in the interview recorded for our all new K100 Morning Show on Wednesday.
The global demand for soybeans should remain strong with most of that interest coming from China. So says trading expert Jim Bower with Bower Trading in Lafayette, Indiana. Click Here
And Bower says that’s due to the country’s expansion in turkey, pork, chicken, beef, lobster, catfish and even shrimp production.
Actor Tom Cavanagh became a star on the shortlived but beloved romantic comedy series Ed. After that show, Cavanagh was offered lots of similar light comedy roles but remained highly selective of his projects, appearing on Scrubs in the recurring role of J.D's brother and then co-starring with his friend Eric McCormick on another short lived but much liked series on TNT. That series didn't last long but that coming up short did lead Tom to his biggest role yet as Dr. Harrison Wells, aka The Reverse Flash, the series big villain. We talked to Tom about working on The Flash, his co-star Grant Gustin and what he told Gustin after DC Comics informed the world that they would not be bringing the DC TV Universe into the DC Movie universe.
Senator Tammy Duckworth is firing back at the President for his comments about what other Presidents haven’t done when it come to contacting family members of fallen soldiers. President Trump has said that then President Obama didn’t contact gold star family members. Duckworth told MSNBC the statement is false and she personally witnessed Obama meeting and consoling family members.
The President is also fighting back against claims that he told one gold star family that the solider “must have known what he was signing up for.” Trump says on Twitter that part of the conversation was “fabricated”. That solider and 3 others were recently killed in Africa.
Illinois has a very rich man as Governor but he’s not nearly as wealthy as a person that’s trying to run against him next November. Forbes magazine ranks Democrat gubernatorial candidate J.B. Pritzker as 219th richest American, saying he’s worth $3.4 billion. Pritzker is among the richest people in Illinois, but hedge fund manager Ken Griffin is atop the state list. His personal wealth is pegged at $8.5 billion.
Halloween trick or treating in Macomb is a two night event. The City of Macomb announced today trick or treating in the city will last from 6 Pm to 8 on two nights, Monday, October 30th and Tuesday October 31st. Residents are reminded that if you are participating in the trick or treating festivities, be sure to leave your porch light on to indicate you are handing out treats. Trick Or Treaters are reminded to cross streets at crosswalks, look both ways before crossing any road, and make sure you are accompanied by an adult in case of emergency.
The state has submitted its bid to land the second world headquarters or HQ2 of Amazon. The web retailer right now is being courted by every major city in the nation and that includes a bid that centers around Chicago. Amazon is offering the possibility of fifty thousand jobs that pay more than a $100,000 a year. Governor Bruce Rauner says in the end each one of those Amazon jobs will create another opportunity for employment.
The deer hunting season is here and conservation authorities are reminding hunters of some basic things to keep themselves safe. DNR Conservation Police Sargent John Williamson notes the archery season is underway in Illinois. If you haven’t been out to hunt yet, Williamson says it is best to get out and check those tree stands.
Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White says the Graduated Driver's License has been a proven lifesaver for first time drivers. White believes stricter standards for younger drivers has played a lead role in cutting the number of teenage driver deaths by 51 percent in the past ten years. Illinois Transportation Department figures show That compared to 155 lives lost in that age group in 2007. That was the year before the graduated license program took effect. The graduated license program features nighttime driving restrictions, an increased required practice driving time with an adult before a teen can get a license and limits starting drivers to one passenger in the front seat. Cell phone use is prohibited, even with a hands free device, unless there is an emergency.
WIU residence halls are offering Safe Trick-or-Treating, Haunted Housing sponsored by university housing and dining services (UHDS). The program will start at 6pm and end at 8pmMonday, October 30, in conjunction with Macomb community evenings. Children 2 to 12 are invited to trick or treat and play games in a safe environment. Guides will be provided through the residence halls however, all children must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian. Participation residence halls include Bayless- Henninger (Enter through the Henninger Hall basement), Corbin-Olsen (Olsen Hall East Entrance), Lincoln-Washington (Grote Hall Entrance), Tanner Hall (North Door), and Thompson Hall (Main Lobby). In addition, residence assistance council members will be sponsoring “Haunted Housing” experience for adults and teens 6pm -11pm Fridaythrough Saturday, October 27 through the 28th. October 30 activities are free to the public; however haunted housing on October 27 to the 28th is $3per person or $2 and a donation of a nonperishable food item. Items will be donated to area food banks. So come out October, 27 through the 28th for Haunted Housing 6pm-11pm and October 30 for university hall trick-or-treating 6pm-8pm.
The Illinois Lottery is recognizing breast cancer awareness month with the re-launch of a scratch off ticket. The Illinois Lottery’s Acting Director Greg Smith says since the Ticket for the Cure’s creation more than 12 million dollars has been raised to support breast cancer programs.
Is it a toy or is it going to impact the bottom line of your operation? Farmers need to answer that question before moving forward with drone technology says GROWMARK’S Agronomy Information Services Sales Manager Brian Henze. Click Here
Henze is participating in a drone conference next month, hosted by Heartland Community College and Scott Smigel. Click Here
The conference is November 10th at Heartland’s Astroth Community Education Center in Normal. Advance registration is $69. You can register at “heartland.edu”.
The Clinton Nuclear Power Station will be the scene of a first responder drill next month. On November first, the Illinois Emergency Management Agency has announced it will conduct an exercise to test emergency response plans for a potential radio-logical incident. Emergency response personnel from four counties will join the plant operator Exelon and the State of Illinois in conducting the four hour response test.
Western Illinois University will be the site of a Take Back the Night Rally on October 26th. According to a release from WIU, the March from WIU's Sherman Hall to Chandler Park will begin at 7 Pm on Thursday, October 26th and will culminate at Chandler Park with a Survivors Speak Out event. In the days leading up to the March, people can purchase t-shirts to wear in support of the March at the University Concourse beginning October 23th throught the 25th. T-Shirts are going to be $5.00 for students and $8.00 for staff and members of the community. For more information about the Take Back the Night Rally, Thursday, October 26th, you can call 309-298-2242.
With harvest in full swing in Illinois, deer activity in rural areas has picked up and wildlife authorities are advising motorists to use extra caution.
DNR Conservation Police Sargent John Williamson indicates with the crops coming down, deer are much more active, especially in rural areas, and can be a major hazard for motorists.
In addition to increased deer movement, with farmers continuing the harvest, heavy machinery and slow moving vehicles will be on roadways for several more weeks. Always slow down and allow those vehicles plenty of space.
Not only will Western Illinois Congresswoman Cheri Bustos face a challenge from Republicans in the 2018 election cycle, but she’s also been appointed by Democrats to help candidates with game planning, specifically in rural areas. Bustos was one of just 12 Democratic lawmakers last year that won in a district carried by President Trump. Click Here
Bustos says she represents rural interests as the only member of Democratic Party leadership from the Midwest. Click Here
In the 17th District, three Republican candidates will be running in the March primary—Galesburg businessman Mark Kleine along with Craig Cameron and Jon Schuh.
The U-S Environmental Protection Agency announced stricter measures on the use of a crop herbicide that led to complaints in Illinois and dozens of other states. E-P-A says it worked with states, land-grant universities, seed and crop protection companies to examine the underlying causes complaints about a soybean crop protection product containing dicamba. The Senior Director of Commodities for the Illinois Farm Bureau, Tamara Nelsen, says the decision allows Illinois farmers and others to have access to the technology;
E-P-A Administrator Scott Pruitt called the actions "...intensive, collaborative efforts..." with states and university scientists working together to find a solution. As of earlier this month, the Illinois Department of Agriculture had received more than 200 dicamba-related complaints.
About A Week Ago by Jennifer Hollimon - Intern
Children and their parents have an opportunity to get creative with their hands. WIU is inviting people to come out to “Sock Monkey Saturdays” in the University Art Gallery. There are designated themes on the days of the event. The first theme is a “Popsicle Stick Party” on Saturday, October 14th. The second theme is “Make a Mask” on Saturday, November 11th. All activities for both days will begin at 10 a.m. and end at noon. This event is free and open to the public.
About A Week Ago by Jennifer Hollimon - Intern
The WIU Chemistry and Geology clubs are teaming up to host a “Chemistry Rocks” webinar. This event will show chemists experimenting with rocks and minerals. This event is free and welcome to the public to view the live broadcast. There will be a chance for people to engage in discussion and activities with the chemist experts. “Chemistry Rocks” will be take place in room 203 in Currens Hall on Tuesday, October 24th. The webinar will begin at 6 p.m.
About A Week Ago by Jennifer Hollimon - Intern
The WIU Women’s Center will take part in the celebration of “Love Your Body Day.” The National Organization for Women is sponsoring this special campaign. There will be numerous displays of “Body Myth” collages on the first floor of the Multicultural Center. This campaign is a message for women to be comfortable in their own skin. This event will take place on Wednesday, October 18th at 10 a.m. and end at 5 p.m.
The Macomb City Council Committee of the Whole will meet at 7 Pm on Monday evening at the Macomb City Hall. For a downloadable copy of the agenda, click here.
MACOMB CITY COUNCIL
MONDAY, OCTOBER 16, 2017
MACOMB CITY HALL
MEETING CALLED TO ORDER
1. Minutes of the Macomb City Council meeting held on Monday, October 2, 2017 and minutes of the Committee of the Whole meeting held on Monday, October 9, 2017.
2. Department Reports: Fire Department, Police Department
3. Accept and place on file Treasurer’s Report for September.
4. Consideration to approve a façade grant application from Terrill Title, 117 South Side Square, for window replacements on the second and third floors in the amount of $16,697.47.
5. Consideration to approve a Downtown Revolving Loan application from Drive Studio of Dance, 14 West Side Square, in the amount $7,770.00 for 7 years at 3% interest.
6. Consideration to approve a CDAP Revolving Loan application from Chicago Beef Factory, 202 West Carroll Street, in the amount of $15,000.00 for 7 years at 3.5% interest.
7. Consideration to approve the landscape plant materials for the downtown islands from Boehm’s Garden Center in the amount of $9,904.96.
1. Consideration of an ordinance to amend the City fees for Alcohol Licenses, Rental Registration, Cemetery Services, Building Permits, Development Site Review and Plumbing Inspections by amending sections of the City of Macomb Municipal Code.
This ordinance will be presented for second reading and final approval.
2. Consideration of an ordinance to amend Section 17-927 of Chapter 7, Article VIII, Historical Preservation of the Macomb Illinois Municipal Code (metal awnings).
This ordinance will be presented for second reading and final approval.
3. Consideration of an ordinance to authorize the City of Macomb to lease property to be used as a Taxi Service Office – S & G Taxi.
This ordinance will be presented for second reading and final approval.
October 16, 2017
UNFINISHED BUSINES – Continued
4. Other unfinished business.
1. Consideration to authorize the solicitation of quotes for the City of Macomb’s property and casualty insurance.
Attached is a memo from CA Torreson for your review. Final action will be in order.
2. Consideration to authorize the Mayor to sign the documents for the City of Macomb’s electricity supply.
Attached is a memo from CA Torreson for you review along with a history chart of past electrical rates. Final action will be in order.
3. Consideration to authorize the Committee of the Whole Power to Act at their meeting to be held on October 23, 2017 to award the bid for the Pierce Street building improvements.
Attached is a memo from CA Torreson for your review. Final action will be in order.
4. Other new business.
a) Appointment, employment, compensation, discipline, performance or dismissal of an employee of the public body or legal counsel for the public body, pursuant to Sec. 2(c) (1) of the Open Meetings Act.
b) Collective Bargaining matters between the public body and its employees or
representatives or deliberations concerning salary schedules for one or more classes of employees, pursuant to Sec. 2(c) (2) of the Open Meetings Act.
c) The purchase or lease of real property for the use of the public body, pursuant to Sec. 2(c) (5) of the Open Meetings Act.
d) The setting of a price for sale or lease of property owned by the public body,
pursuant to Sec. 2(c) (6) of the Open Meetings Act.
e) Pending or probable litigation, pursuant to Sec. 2(c) (11) of the Open Meetings Act.
The Illinois Beef Association happy with a trend they are seeing. Young people are actually coming back to the farm says the organization’s Jill Johnson. Click Here
Johnson is a native of Henry County and grew up on a Galva farm that included Hereford cattle, corn and soybeans.
Illinois voters won't make a final decision on their choice for Governor for more than a year, but already two top contenders are dumping millions of dollars of their own wealth into their campaign warchests. In that high stakes fundraising game, Chicago Alderman Ameya Pawar is saying fold. After promising early polling numbers, Pawar says he's ending his bid for the Democratic nomination because he doesn't have enough money or resources to mount a successful statewide campaign.
Parts of the country along the coasts have been battered this year by Mother Nature, and a new report from the Midwest Economic Policy Institute warns that the threat of climate change extends much farther inland and could wreak havoc on transportation and infrastructure systems across the Midwest.
Study author Mary Craighead says policymakers need to understand the potential costs and consequences of climate change, and adds they need to be proactive to protect communities and the economy. Her report says the average air temperature has increased by more than 4 degrees since the 1980s, and there's been a 27-percent increase in the number of days of very heavy rain since the '50s.
"The higher temperatures and the stronger storms can reduce the lifespan of roads and bridges," she says. "They can cause railways to buckle. Flooding, obviously, is a huge issue that can impact the flow of traffic, the flow of freight, which can impact our economy."
Flooding is a key issue because there has been a steady reduction in ice coverage on the Great Lakes, and more frequent freeze-thaw cycles. Northern Illinois saw severe flooding from late-summer storms. Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner issued disaster declarations for four counties.
The study recommends limiting development in low-lying areas that already have experienced storm-related damage, and updating heat and rainfall standards used in the project-design process.
"It's just going to keep getting worse, so it's time we really need to stop debating it and start actually taking action and planning for it in the future so that we don't have to deal with the ramifications after the fact, we can actually plan for it ahead of time," she explains.
The study says national infrastructure needs are expected to top $2 trillion by 2025. It notes the state departments of transportation in Illinois, Michigan, Ohio and Minnesota have all pursued asset-management programs to address climate change and assess vulnerabilities.
The Illinois State Police have announced that two kids were injured a three vehicle crash involving a semi truck in Mt. Sterling. According to the release from the ISP, a 16 year old driver with a 12 year old passenger was turing left on US 24 to County Road 910 East, 1 mile east of Mt. Sterling when the vehicle driven by the 16 year old was struck by a Freightliner Truck Tractor Pulling a Semi-Trailer. According to the investigation, the truck driven by 28 year old Askhat Shermatov of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania failed to reduce speed and struck the 16 year old's vehicle in the rear. The collision caused the teenager's vehicle to be pushed into the westbound lane of US 24 where it was then struck by a Chevy S-10 truck driven by 37 year old Brandon Gallaher of Mt. Sterling. The unnamed 16 year old driver was taken from the scene by ambulance to Blessing Hospital. The 12 year old passenger was flown from the scene by Air Evac also to Blessing Hospital. Both were reported to have suffered serious injuries. Mr. Shermatov and Mr. Gallaher were not reported as injured at the scene. Mr. Shermatov was cited for Failure to Reduce Speed to Avoid an Accident.
Brandon Deweese is new to the business world in Macomb. His business, Pro Junkeez, a junk removal company, just got started earlier this year. On Today's Regional Media BusinessCast we talk to Brandon about the challenges of starting a new business, the reception he's had from other local business owners and what drew him to the idea of junk removal as a full time business. The business of hauling away unwanted items is pretty interesting and we want to wish Brandon the best of luck. You can learn more about Pro Junkeez at ProJunkeez.com.
About Three Weeks Ago by Dwight A. Bolden II
Western Illinois Museum presents it's Haunted Museum tour for the upcoming holiday season. Museum tours will be Saturday, October 14, 2017. Doors open at 11am and tours run continuously until 1pm. Museum re-enactors will take you back to 1938 and see an old Elgin bike, football uniforms, radios and more.There'll be a cash bar with wine, beer, and soft drinks along with complimentary tasty treats. The museum is located at 201 S. Lafayette St, one block south of the Macomb Courthouse Square. Tours are free, donations are appreciated. Take a family friendly tour October 14, at the Western Illinois Museum.
About Three Weeks Ago by Dwight A. Bolden II
Macomb Heritage Day has officially been set for the dates of the 21st - 23rd of June, 2018. Check out the parade, car show, and many more events this upcoming spring. Anyone interested in becoming involved with the event or being a sponsor, contactJ.Armstrong@makeitmacomb.com or call 309-833-1315. For more information go towww.macombheritageday.com
A GOP challenger in Illinois’ 17th Congressional District off to a strong start financially. Mark Kleine of Galesburg has raised $507,000 since the beginning of his campaign in late August. He says around $400,000 of that has come from within the district and he provided $100,000 of his own money to jump start the effort. Click Here
Kleine is the former owner of John Deere implement dealer Kleine Equipment. Democrat Cheri Bustos of Rock Island has held the 17th District Congressional seat since 2013.
The Western Illinois Musuem (201 South Lafayette Street, Macomb) will hold two of its big annual events during the next two Saturdays. The events are free with a suggested $5 donation at the door.
On October 14 the museum welcomes in patrons of all ages for its Haunted Museum Tours. Those take place from 11:00 a.m. to 1 p.m. The event is set in 1938, with reinactors portraying the setting of Macomb during that time.
On October 21, beginning at 6:30 p.m., the Hallo-Wine event will be held. This event will be very similar to the Haunted Museum Tours, only with a cash bar.
For more information on these upcoming events at the Western Illinois Museum, listen to my interview with Sue Scott.
llinois Transportation officials are rethinking the layout and role of the state's highway rest areas in the Digital Age. IDOT's Kelsea Gurski says the agency has posted an online survey seeking public input... Click Here
Gurski says the rest stops aren't just a convenience, they're a proactive life saver for drowsy drivers and those who would be in their path... Click Here
The 20 question survey is available at idot.illinois.gov, is available through Sunday, Oct. 29. IDOT maintains a system of 30 rest areas and 11 welcome centers on highways throughout the state, serving more than 36 million visitors annually.
Illinois' FFA president enjoying his time in office. Joseph Birrittier was elected to the position last June and now represents 17,000 FFA members statewide. He doesn't live on a farm. Click Here
After his one year term is up in June of 2018, he plans to enroll at the University of Illinois to study agriculture science education.
More Latinos are going to college, but they're losing ground in the labor market, according to a new report from the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce.
Researchers found that more Latinos are getting education beyond high school, but only 21 percent have college degrees, compared to 32 percent of blacks and 45 percent of whites.
According to Anthony Carnevale, the center's director and the report's lead author, relatively few Latinos are enrolling in more selective colleges that have higher graduation rates.
"They're stuck in the middle," he states. "That is, they're in the two-year colleges in certificates more than degrees. And relative to their growing share of the population, they're actually losing ground."
Education isn't the only factor. The report says in Illinois, white women who have only a high school diploma, or who haven't graduated at all, still earn more than Latina women.
The research found Latinos generally have the lowest median income of all groups.
Carnevale notes that, for those with some post-secondary education, the pay gap gets smaller, but income still lags behind white workers.
"Irrespective of what major Latinos enroll in, what college they enroll in, whether they graduate or not, in the end, they always make less than whites," he points out.
The report offers some good news. It says since the 1990s, high school graduation rates have risen faster for Latinos than for their black or white peers.
Carnevale adds that more than 100,000 Latino students have test scores that could get them into some of the top colleges in the country.
"They've done their part," he stresses. "The issue is whether or not we will have the kinds of supports that are required for lower-income, minority families to make that leap into the college ranks, especially at the B.A. level."
In some high-wage occupations, the report says race-based earnings gaps between whites and Latinos with at least a bachelor's degree essentially vanish.
Western Illinois University President Jack Thomas is inviting people to join him for a brown bag lunch. According to a release from WIU, President Thomas will host a series of Brown Bag Lunch conversations beginning Thursday, October 19th, from Noon until 1 Pm at the University Brattain Lounge. The informal conversations are an opportunity for President Thomas to sit down with members of the community, students and WIU staff to discuss issues of the day related to the University. As mentioned, the first Brown Bag Lunch Conversation with President Jack Thomas will take place October 19th from 12 Noon to 1 Pm.
A 41 year old grand piano utilized by students at Macomb Schools needs to be replaced and modern social media is giving them a chance to raise funds in a unique way. Macomb School District Superintendent John Meixner announced via twitter that school members had launched a GoFundMe page to raise the $11,000 needed to purchase a new grand piano for students to use and learn on for the next 40 years. Organizers of the GoFundMe campaign have launched a YouTube video to promote their campaign and give you a closer look at the history of the current piano and what replacing it will mean for students in the future. If you'd like to make a donation you can find the Macomb High School Piano Project GoFundMe page linked here.
Hunters will have the opportunity to help out in the war on hunger. The Western Illinois Regional Council has announced a partnership that will allow local hunters to donate deer meat to people in need. The partnershiip between the WIRC-CAA and local meat lockers, part of the Hunters Helping the Hungry Program, means that hunters will have the opportunity to take recently hunted deer meat to local meat lockers to be stored and donated to people in need. Participating meat lockers include Blandinsville Locker Service, Prairieland Processing Service in Bowen, Bushnell Locker Service, and Vancil's Locker in Stronghurst. The program is open to hunters in McDonough, Hancock, Henderson and Warren Counties.If you would like more information on the Hunters Helping the Hungry Program please contact WIRC at 309-837-3941.
Illinois Governor Bruce Raner says Comptroller Susana Mendoza's refusal to pay for information technology upgrades does not compute. As Mendoza continues to address a backlog of billions of dollars in bills, millions for the Governor's computer technology iniative remain on ice.... Rauner is calling for Mendoza to end the wait.... Click Here
Rauner says recent spending decisions by lawmakers make it more important to release the I-T funds.... Click Here
In the spring, Mendoza suspended 27 million dollars in payments for Rauner's Enterprise Resource Program.
Gun control is again a topic up for debate in Washington after the Las Vegas mass shooting. But that conversation will be one that does not include the voice of Republican Governor Bruce Rauner. He says his focus includes issues important to the state of Illinois.
It’s another endorsement for the gubernatorial campaign of JB Pritzker. The Illinois Democratic County Chairman’s Association voted to endorse the billionaire and Julian Stratton for Governor and Lieutenant Governor. IDCCA President Doug House says the vote shows that Pritzker has created a strong grassroots campaign that leaves him the best prepared next November.
The renewable fuels industry expressing some reservations with EPA administrator Scott Pruitt. The issue is lowering the renewable fuel standard or RFS. Bob Dinneen with the Renewable Fuels Association believes President Trump is supportive of ethanol and other bio-fuels, but that may not be swaying the EPA chief. Click Here
Pruitt was confirmed as EPA administrator last February. He formerly served as Oklahoma Attorney General.
It's a long delayed homecoming but a Springfield hero is headed home. Army Staff Sgt. Michael Aiello was killed in action in the Netherlands in World War II. He had taken part in Operation Market Garden, the failed attempt to invade Northern Germany. His great grand nephew, Brian Aiellio .is thankful Army efforts to identify him have trudged on...
Sgt. Aiello served in the 401st Glider Infantry Regiment. He and fellow glider and airborne troops were deployed to seize bridges in the Netherlands and hold them until British armored units could reinforce their positions. Once Sgt. Aiello’s remains arrive in Springfield, he will be buried at Camp Butler National Cemetery in Riverton. There will be a public ceremony at Camp Butler at 10 a.m. Oct. 28.
Parts of Illinois still recovering from the 2012 drought and your trees likely need water. That is the message from University of Illinois Extension small farms educator, Doug Gucker, who indicates your tree could be showing signs of stress.
When using a sprinkler to water the trees, Gucker says a good way to measure how much water you've used is to put a soup can down and when it measures two inches, you know how long to run the sprinkler on other trees.
Bump stocks have gone from a term familiar to gun collectors and owners to a household name after the tragedy in Las Vegas. Senator Tammy Duckworth is expressing her concerns about the device essentially allows a gun to operate like an automatic weapon while remaining legal. Duckworth wants to see bump stocks off limits and she wants action not words.... Click Here
Duckworth is teaming up with Senators Dick Durbin and Diane Feinstein to draft legislation closing the bump stocks loophole.
A new nationwide report by the U.S. Public Interest Research Group (PIRG) Education Fund ranks the top 25 restaurant chains for their antibiotics policies and practices.
At issue is misuse of antibiotics in meat production, which experts say puts human health at risk by breeding drug-resistant bacteria.
Shelby Luce, an Antibiotics Fellow at the Education Fund, says for the third year in a row, Panera and Chipotle were the only two major chains to get an A grade, because they reject routine antibiotic use through their entire supply chain.
Further down the list is Kentucky Fried Chicken. Luce says KFC earned the "most improved" grade.
"Going from an F grade to a B-minus for its newly announced commitment to no longer serve chicken raised with medically-important antibiotics in its U.S. locations by 2018," she states.
According to the report, 14 restaurants have taken action this year to curb routine use of antibiotics in their supply chain, compared to nine last year.
Luce says the American Academy of Pediatrics and the World Health Organization both warn widespread overuse of antibiotics is pushing us closer to a time when medicines could no longer work.
"Right now, 70 percent of medically important antibiotics sold in the U.S. are for use in animal agriculture, and fast food restaurants are some of the largest meat purchasers in the world," she explains. "So, their policies can completely shift the meat industry, for the U.S. - and eventually, hopefully, globally."
The report says no new progress was made in reducing antibiotic use in beef and pork.
Luce says New England-based Dunkin Donuts moved up a grade to a D with its recent commitment to stop serving chicken raised with antibiotics by the end of 2018.
As the country mourns the loss of life at the hands of a gunman in Las Vegas this month, and the debate rages about gun control, some anti-violence groups are seeing an increase in membership.
Lee Goodman, an organizer with the group Peaceful Communities, said every time there's a mass shooting, more people decide they've had enough. He said while groups like his are happy to have more people on board, it's unfortunate that people have to join in the first place.
"Every time one of these things happen, we hear from more people who say, 'I feel awful that I didn't do anything before, but now I'm going to take action,'" Goodman said.
According to FBI reports, Stephen Paddock opened fire on country music fans in Las Vegas on October 1, killing 58 people and wounding around 500 others in the worst mass shooting in modern U.S. history. Paddock owned 47 guns, 23 of which were with him in his Vegas hotel room. A dozen of those were outfitted with bump stocks, which allow semi-automatic weapons to fire rapidly, much like automatic rifles.
Goodman said the nation needs legislation to limit who has access to weapons like these, but he doesn't feel that's the only solution. He said society has become numb to violence because of television and video games and the lack of empathy for others.
"[It is] Almost something we can count on happening with the regularity of the rising of the sun and the moon," he said. "And that's a terrible, tragic commentary of the times that we live in that people are so violent that the rest of us have to get accustomed to their violence."
Goodman said in the past, big cities such as Chicago were most likely to experience violence. And while the city does have a high crime rate, rural areas are seeing a spike as well.
The WIU male fraternity, Sigma Alpha Epsilon, is hosting their “WIN” event to raise money towards the Children’s Miracle Network. They have a schedule of events from Sunday, October 8th through Thursday, October 12th. Activities include volleyball, softball, flag football, and more. The fraternity will also have dum dum sucker drives at the County Market, Walmart, and Hy-Vee. The sucker drive will be Monday through Thursday from 3-6 pm each night.
After the tragedy in Las Vegas, Congressman Rodney Davis wants a closer look at laws governing bump stock technology. That weapons modification was apparently used in the attack on the Vegas strip outdoor concert where 59 people were killed and more than 500 people were wounded. Bump stocks allow gun users to legally simulate a fully automatic weapon even though fully automatic weapons have been off limits to the general public for the last three decades. Davis has signed onto a letter to asking the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) to review the law regarding bump stock technology. Davis says he hadn't heard of bump stocks until the Vegas incident. He says There is no place for politics in this debate or knee-jerk reactions, but I believe we can have a thoughtful, non-partisan discussion about the facts. To be clear, those who believe that gun control or one law is going to put an end to mass shootings are, unfortunately, severely shortsighted. As someone who experienced gun violence a few months ago, I know all too well that this is a much larger issue of hate, of mental illness, and of evil and we cannot lose sight of that.”
Due to the rain and wet field conditions, the Luke Bryan concert originally scheduled to be at the Ayers Family Farm in Edinburg has been moved to the Illinois State Fairgrounds in Springfield. The concert will be on the infield of the grandstands just north of the grandstand at the fairgrounds. The concert is still scheduled for Friday with the gates opening at 5 and the concert starting at 6.
Western Illinois native Margo Price returns home to open for Chris Stapleton. The concert was Thursday night at the TaxSlayer Center in Moline. Price says Las Vegas will continue to be on the mind of the music industry for many days to come. Click Here
Price is a 2001 Aledo High School graduate. Her career took off last year—making appearances on such shows as Conan, Jimmy Fallon and Saturday Night Live.
The City of Macomb Public Works Department has announced that they will begin Hydrant Flushing e on Wednesday, October 11th. Hydrants across the city will be flushed between 8 Am and 3:30 Pm and will continue each weekday until all hydrants across the city have been flushed. During the hydrant flushing residents may experience water discoloration and loss of water pressure. Public Works officers advise that if water is discolored you should wait before using the water until it clears. If you wash laundry in discolored water, rust remover is available at the Public Works Office. Be advised also that if your water pressure drops below 20 PSI a boil order will be necessary and you are advised not to use hot water until pressure is restored and after you have run cold water through your system for 5 to 10 minutes. If you have any questions regarding hydrant flushing please contact the City of Macomb Public Works Department at 309-836-3916.
Kelsey Boyer from Wesley Village is our guest on this week's Regional Media BusinessCast. Kelsey joined us to talk about the unique history of Wesley Village in Macomb, what makes Wesley Village special and about Wesley Village's place in the business community in Macomb. You can contact Kelsey at Wesley Village by calling 309-833-2123 or go online to WesleyVillageMacomb.com. Click Here to Download the Interview Click Here to Stream the Interview
About Three Weeks Ago by Dwight A. Bolden II
The Western Illinois Museum will hold its annual hallo-wine event on Saturday, October 21, 2017. Doors and cash bar open at 6:30 PM, program begins at 7 PM. Music, refreshments, and a hunting is by the museums re-in actors will be available to guest. The program location is 201 South Lafayette St. at the western Illinois museum, one block south of Macomb's Courthouse Square. This year's musical guest will be areas favorites Sally Weisenberg and Dan Berbarm, performing to 40 minute set at 7 o'clock and 8 o'clock. so don't forget to bring your dancing shoes. refreshments will be provided by Hy-Vee's catering, treats will also be served. For more information, visit the museums website at www.wimuseum.org contact the museum at 309-839-2750
McDonough County Sheriff Rick Van Brooker has announced the arrest of a Missouri man found with Methamphetamine during a traffic stop in Macomb. According to the Sheriff's Office release, 28 year old Travis L. Emmers of Columbia, Missouri was arrested on Wednesday, October 4th after a traffic stop in the area of Highway 67 North of Macomb. After speaking with Emmert during the traffic stop the Sheriff's Deputy callled for a canine unit to come to the scene. The canine unit investigation led to the discovery of more than 2 grams of Methamphetamine ICE, a Digital Scale and a Sawed Off Shotgun. Emmert was arrested and taken to the McDonough County Jail on Charges of Illegal Use of a Weapon, Possession of Methamphetamine, Possession of Drug Paraphenalia, and Driving While Suspended.
As part of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the Bushnell Pink Warriors have announced a major donation to McDonough District Hospital. According to a release, the Bushnell Pick Warriors have donated a check valued at $4000.00 to Linda's Fund, a Breast Cancer Charity at McDonough District Hospital. Linda's Fund provides financial assistance to breast cancer patients at McDonough District Hospital. The $4000.00 donation came from funds raised at last March's Cancer's a Drag, Drag Show put on each year by the Bushnell Pink Warriors.
A Christian County family-owned farm has been working since January to bring country music superstar Luke Bryan to Central Illinois. The big concert will finally happen on Friday night. Cathryn Ayers is a part of the Ayers family hosting the concert on their farm. She says the family is honored to be the hosts of the event, but they also are thankful for how Luke Bryan is supporting agriculture.
Gates for the event will open at 5 p.m. with the show scheduled to start at 6 p.m. at the Ayers Family Farm, located at 2535 North 800 East Road, about five miles north of Edinburg in Christian County.
Highland Park Mayor Nancy Rotering is jumping into the Democratic field after last month's announcement Lisa Madigan wouldn't seek re-election. .Rotering ran a spirited campaign against Congressman Brad Schneider in the last year's Democratic primary. She landed more than 46 percent of the vote cast. She won a high profile battle with the NRA as Highland Park enacted an ordinance banning assault weapons and high-capacity magazines. State Representative Scott Drury and State Senator Kwame Raoul are also in the Democratic field.
After another failed healthcare push, the U.S. House is now turning their focus to tax reform, and GOP members have unveiled their framework for how the new tax code may look. Central Illinois Congressman Rodney Davis says the goal is to make the tax code simpler, and put more money into the pockets of middle income families.
The exodus continues at the Capitol. Another experienced member of the General Assembly is calling it a career. Republican State Rep. David Harris of Arlington Heights has decided not to seek another term. That means half of the Illinois GOP's ten longest serving members won't be on the ballot next year. Harris joined Democrats in voting for an income tax increase over the summer, ending a multi-year budget stalemate. That vote made him a target of conservative activist and radio host Dan Proft, who is backing a primary opponent Katie Miller of Mount Prospect.
Central Illinois is in a moderate drought but Doug Gucker, University of Illinois Extension small farms educator, notes the drought is very limited in a section that spans from Missouri to Illinois and Iowa.
Gucker says the localized drought is not impacting the markets because it isn't widespread.
West Prairie Middle School will hold its Fifth Annual Spooktacular 5K Fun Run/Walk on Saturday, October 21. The event features a 3.1 "around the horn" loop on a level surface through both the town and country. The event begins and ends at WPMS.
Money from the event goes to the school's PBIS program. That stands for Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports. The program rewards students for positive behavior throughout the school year.
The entry fee for the event before October 10 is $25 for adults and $15 for students k-12 (k-6 need to be with a parent). Children who are in a stroller are free. Registering before October 10 guarentees you a t-shirt. Registration after that date is $30 for adults and $20 for students.
To register, stop by the WPMS office (600 S. Hun Street, Colchester) where you can fill out a form and bring your payment. The form can also be downloaded off the school's Facebook page. For more information visit the school's website or email principal Caitlin Watson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Also be sure to listen to my interview with two students who've helped organize the event, Brayden DeCounter and Ava Kilburn.
On Tuesday the Western Illinois Board of Trustees announced that the University has agreed to sell the former WIU Quad Cities campus. According to a press release from the Board of Trustees the former campus on 60th Street in Moline was sold to DJL Associates, LLC of Rock Island, for $1.4 Million dollars. Western Illinois operated their Quad Cities campus on the 60th Street location from 1997 to 2014. In 2014 Western Illinois accepted a gift of 20 acres of land on the Moline riverfront from Deere & Company and built the brand new WIU Quad Cities campus which has operated since 2014. The next meeting of the WIU Board of Trustees is set for December 14th and 15th, 2017,
Harvest season means it’s once again time to store grain. GROWMARK’s Randy Houltaus says it’s important to keep the crop from spoiling and then also making sure the product comes out of the bin when it’s time. Among the tips he’s promoting is knowing the proper airflow rate. Click Here
Holthaus says once you know the airflow rate, that will help you determine how long to run the fans. And he adds when to run the fans is determined by following Equilibrium Moisture Content charts.
You may have heard the phrase "Will it play in Peoria". Well the works of the Illinois river city's 182nd Airlift Wing are being well received in areas ravaged by recent hurricanes. Wing Commander Robbie Robertson says it's been a busy time in the weeks since their first C-130 cargo aircraft brought supplies to victims of Hurricane Harvey in Texas... Click Here
Robertson says his personnel put a wide array of day jobs aside to help hurricane victims... Click Here
Two C-130s delivered items to St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands on Friday. The 182nd is also preparing to send about 15 security-force members to support airfield operations at Jose Aponte De La Torre Airport in Puerto Rico. Eight members of the 126th Air Refueling Wing at Belleville based Scott Air Force Base arrived in Puerto Rico last month. That unit is providing 24-hour voice and data communication to emergency responders.