Macomb Local News Archives for 2018-07

29th Annual Purple and Gold Auction set for Saturday, August 11, 2018

Join Leatherneck fans, coaches, and alumni on Saturday, August 11, 2018 at Western Hall for the 29th Annual Purple and Gold Auction.
 
There will be a silent and live auction during the night with over 250 bid items. Some of the highlights include framed and autographed Dick Butkus and Mitchell Trubisky Bears' jerseys, a one-week getaway to Frisco, Colorado, and VIP trips with WIU Men's Basketball to Nebraska, WIU Men's Football to Illinois, and WIU Women's Basketball to Las Vegas. There will also be a cash raffle with two $500 prizes.
 
I spoke with Jerry Cremer, who is involved with the auction, earlier this morning and he encourages people to help support the student-athletes by attending the auction. 
 
"Western's a great part of the community, the student-athletes put a lot of effort into what they do. Not only going to school here, but whatever sport they participate in, so it's a great way to thank them."
 
This is a great way for people around the community to help support the athletic department and all the students involved. 
 
The Purple and Gold Auction's social, Silent Auction and cash raffle will begin at 5:00 p.m. The dinner will begin at 6:30 p.m. with the Silent Auction closing at 7:45 p.m. and Live Auction beginning at 8:00 p.m.
 
It is $40 per person which gets you a steak, chicken, or vegetarian dinner, a preview of the bid items, and access to the social with the local community.
 
You can sign up online http://leathernecktickets.universitytickets.com/user_pages/event.asp?id=314&cid=43 or by calling the WIU Athletic Department at 309-298-1190. 
 
My full interview with Jerry Cremer and Michael Jones, from Leatherneck Athletics, can be found here: 
 

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Families of Fallen Police Officers to Benefit from New Lottery Game

Gov. Bruce Rauner signed a bill today to create a new Illinois Lottery scratch-off game from which proceeds will fund police memorials, support for the families of officers killed or severely injured in the line of duty, and protective vest replacements for officers.

 

“Our police officers stand in the face of danger every day to keep us safe. We are proud to stand with them and support their families when they are faced with a devastating loss,” Rauner said. “This new ticket will help fund scholarships for their children and honor their bravery at memorial parks across the state.”

 

House Bill 5513 has been pushed forward by House Republican Leader Jim Durkin, R-Western Springs, along with the help of prominent police memorial funds. The Bill will create the police memorial instant ticket and require that net proceeds go to the Criminal Justice Information Projects Fund. The funds will then be divided equally among the Chicago Police Memorial Foundation Fund, the Police Memorial Committee Fund, and the Illinois State Police Memorial Fund.

 

These three designated police memorial funds provide support to families of officers who have been killed or severely injured in the line of duty.

 

“Our police officers wake up every day and put their lives on the line to ensure the safety and security of their citizens and communities,” Durkin said. “It is our duty to help them and their families when they are catastrophically hurt protecting Illinoisans, and this legislation ensures more money will be available without relying on additional state funding.” 

 

The funds raised through this new scratch-off ticket will be used to build and maintain police memorials and parks, hold annual memorial commemorations, give scholarships to children of officers killed or severely injured in the line of duty, provide financial assistance to police officers and their families when a police officer is killed or injured in the line of duty, and provide financial assistance to officers to purchase or replace protective gear.

 

“No dollar amount raised could ever replace a loved one who has paid the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty,” said Illinois State Police Director Leo P. Schmitz. “The funds raised by this new bill will serve as a tribute to these fallen heroes for their sacrifice, and more importantly help future generations of police officers, their families and their children.”

 

The new law goes into effect Jan. 1, 2019.

 

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Congresswoman Bustos Applauds Passage of Bipartisan Bill to Strengthen Career and Technical Education

Congresswoman Cheri Bustos issued the following statement after the House passage of the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act. Earlier this week, the bill also passed the Senate. This legislation reauthorizes the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act, which provides federal funding for community colleges, high schools and technical campuses providing career and technical education (CTE) programs.
 
“It is incredibly important that we prepare our children with the skills they need to get ahead,” said Congresswoman Cheri Bustos. “This bipartisan legislation will help close the skills gap and better prepare our 21st century workforce by bringing businesses and educators together to develop enhanced training programs. I will continue to champion initiatives that connect hardworking Illinoisans with the career and technical education they need to succeed in our rapidly changing economy.” 
 
Congresswoman Bustos, a longtime advocate for expanding CTE programs, joined Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi urging the Senate to act on this legislation. The House passed an initial version of the bill in June last year. View the letter here: https://krishnamoorthi.house.gov/sites/krishnamoorthi.house.gov/files/CTE%20Letter%20to%20Senate%20HELP.pdf

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Illinois Department of Veterans' Affairs Accepting Nominations for their 'Honor 200'

200 veterans from across the state will be honored by the Illinois Department of Veteran Affairs. They will be recognized those who have gone above and beyond the call of duty on their achievements and on the extent to which their contributions have aided, benefited and provided inspiration to their community.
 
More than 100 veterans have already been nominated to be recognized as part of Illinois’ Bicentennial celebration, but they are looking for more nominations. Nominees will be evaluated based on their achievements in dedicating their time and energy to build their communities and assist their fellow veterans and service members.
 
The honorees will be announced in September and will be featured guests at the Bicentennial Party Gala, which will be held at Chicago’s United Center. Anyone can nominate a hero. 
The Governor’s Office of the Illinois Bicentennial and the Illinois Department of Veterans’ Affairs will accept nominations through August 31, 2018. Written nominations can be sent to the Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs, 69 W. Washington Street, Chicago, IL 60601 or online by clicking on “Honor 200” at http://www.illinois.gov/veterans.
 
The Official Illinois Bicentennial Celebration began last December 3rd, 2017 with events in Springfield and Chicago. The celebration has continued with programs and events throughout 2018, ending with the Bicentennial Birthday Party on December 3rd, 2018 at the United Center. The HONOR 200 veterans will be recognized during the Birthday Gala.
 
For information on the Bicentennial and to find out how your community can participate go to http://www.illinois200.gov

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Spoon River College Offers Pharmacy Tech Program in Macomb

The Spoon River College (SRC) Office of Community Outreach is offering a Pharmacy Technician Program in Macomb this Fall.

 

This affordable 12-week program prepares students for a career as a Pharmacy Technician in a retail or hospital setting. Classes are Wednesday Evenings, September 5th-December 5th from 6-10pm at the Spoon River College Macomb Outreach Center- 2500 East Jackson Street.

 

In Illinois, a state license allows people to work as a pharmacy tech for two years. After, they are required to become certified by passing a national exam, administered by the Pharmacy Technician Certification Board (PTCB).  

 

This program at SRC will provide students with the basic skills necessary for an entry level career as a pharmacy technician. The coursework will prepare students to sit for the PTCB certification exam as well.  This course is taught by licensed Certified Pharmacy Technicians who are professionally employed in regional pharmacies. 

 

Coursework includes:  Origin and history of pharmacy, drug regulation and controls, routes and formulations, transcribing of Physician’s orders, correct medication packaging, calculating doses, labeling prescriptions, preparing IVs, drug distribution systems, and the top 200 drugs Brand/Generic.

 

There is a free informational session to meet the instructor and learn about the program.

Registration is required for the session. Dates include: Wednesday, August 8th from 6-8pm OR Saturday, August 25th from 10am-Noon.

 

 

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Duckworth, Durbin Announce $70,000 for Strategic Economic Planning in Western Illinois

U.S. Senators Tammy Duckworth and Dick Durbin have announced that $70,000 in federal funding will help create jobs and support economic development throughout Western Illinois.

 

This funding is provided by the Economic Development District Planning Program, a program within the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) that assists communities as they develop and implement plans to enhance their local economies.

 

“It’s important for local communities and business leaders to have access to the resources they need to create opportunities that drive economic development in Western Illinois,” Duckworth said. “These investments will go a long way toward helping revitalize parts of our state that could use a boost, and I will continue working closely with Senator Durbin to secure additional investments that strengthen local economies across our state.”

 

“This federal funding will help give Western Illinois communities the tools to reach their economic goals and incentivize local investment,” Durbin said. “Senator Duckworth and I will continue working to ensure that all parts of our state have access to these critical federal investments that drive growth.”

 

Under the announcement, the Western Illinois Regional Council (McDonough, Fulton, Hancock, Henderson, Knox and Warren Counties) will receive $70,000. The Council will use this funding to develop a Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) in coordination with the EDA – a process that brings the public and private sectors working together to produce a blueprint for economic prosperity that improves the quality of life for community members throughout the region.

 

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Famous Lincoln Portrait to Arrive at McDonough County Courthouse

A high-quality reproduction of a famous Abraham Lincoln photograph will be

presented to the McDonough County Courthouse on Friday, July 27, 2018.

 

The photograph was taken in Springfield by well-known photographer

Alexander Hesler on June 3, 1860, for Lincoln’s presidential campaign.

Historians consider Hesler’s portrait one of the best taken of Lincoln during

his pre-presidential years.

 

Noted writer, speaker and educator, John Hallwas, will be speaking at the presentation.

 

The unveiling ceremony will take place at 2:00 p.m., at One Courthouse Square in Macomb, Illinois.

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Will Illinois Join National "Raise the Age" Wave?

New science on brain maturity is evolving and some states have raised, or are looking at raising, the age of juvenile court jurisdiction beyond age 18. A bill considered in Illinois calls for an incremental process to raise the age to 21 for those facing misdemeanor charges by 2020. 

 

Advocates and policymakers are hopeful Illinois will become part of a wave of national juvenile-justice reform. Vermont recently passed a law expanding juvenile jurisdiction to include youths up to age 20, and Massachusetts lawmakers are studying a similar measure as part of a new criminal-justice reform law.

 

Here in Illinois, raising the age is an issue state Representative Laura Fine has been working on for a few years. The Glenview Democrat says brain science shows the brain doesn't fully mature until age 26.

 

"Somebody under the age of 26 might do something that they would never consider doing once their brain is fully developed. Based on this, we really feel like the age of a misdemeanor should be increased so that child [,] in many ways who may commit a misdemeanor [,] doesn't have to pay for that for the rest of their life”.

 

Fine introduced House bill 4541 earlier this year. If passed, it would allow 18 to 20-year-olds charged with misdemeanors to have their cases heard in juvenile court. The bill passed out of committee, and Fine hopes it will get a hearing in the full House.

 

Since young adults can vote and serve their country, some argue they should have to face the consequences of breaking the law as an adult. But, Garien Gatewood with the Juvenile Justice Initiative counters there's a flip side to that, considering Illinois just raised the age to purchase tobacco products from 18 to 21.

 

"It's the same kid that you're talking about that you want to protect from tobacco, or you want to protect from moving out on your own at 18, 19 and 20, if you're a ward of the foster system. We should look at protecting their mental well-being, their physical well-being and emotional well-being” says Gatewood.

 

"It says that we could increase it to at first 19 or 20 and examine how is it working. Is it working well, and we should go on, or it's not working, and we should go back? So, we're really trying to do this carefully” says Fine.

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Thomas Rhett Set to Perform At 2018 Illinois State Fair

Illinois State Fair organizers announce that two-time Academy of Country Music award winner, Thomas Rhett, will perform at the 2018 State Fair on Thursday, August 16th.

 

Thomas Rhett’s latest album, Life Changes, is the first country album of 2017 to climb to the top spot on the all-genre Billboard 200 chart, according to Rolling Stone magazine.

 

Rhett says the status backs-up his belief that the album appeals to everyone from Millennials to Baby Boomers.  Hits such as, “Marry Me,” “Unforgettable,” and the album’s title track, “Life Changes” are sure to appeal to fans of FM radio and Spotify playlists. He has continued an upward path to county music stardom since scoring his first hit, “It Goes Like This,” in 2013. He crosses genres of country, pop, R&B, soul, and rock. These influences can be heard throughout the album from “Sixteen” to “Craving You” with Maren Morris.  

 

Rhett is also an accomplished songwriter.  In addition to writing for his own albums, he co-wrote songs with Danielle Bradbery – who will be the opening act on Thursday, August 16th in Springfield.  The two share a duet, “Playing with Fire,” which is featured on Rhett’s album Tangled Up.

 

Danielle Bradbery won “The Voice” five years ago at 16 years old and since then has seen much success. Bradbery met Thomas Rhett while touring with Brett Eldredge on the Suits & Boots Tour in 2015.  After more than four years, she is releasing new music, much to fans delight. Her new album I Don’t Believe We’ve Met includes hits “Sway” and “Worth It”.

 

Tickets to see Thomas Rhett and Danielle Bradbery at the Illinois State Fair will go on sale on today, July 23rd, via https://www.ticketmaster.com/ and the Illinois State Fair box office.

 

Mark your calendars for the 2018 Illinois State Fair, August 9th – 19th, in Springfield, IL.

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Illinois State Police Joins Forces with Agencies Statewide for The 2018 Illinois Speed Awareness Day Campaign

The Illinois State Police are taking a proactive approach to promote safety for motorists, pedestrians, and cyclists through enforcement and education during Illinois Speed Awareness Day on July 25th.

 

In 2016 the total number of crashes in Illinois involving motor vehicles was 324,274. These crashes resulted in 92,957 people being injured and 1,078 people killed. Speed accounted for 32.2% of all overall crashes, and 34.2% of all fatal traffic crashes in 2016.

 

Lives can be easily saved by being aware of our speed and understanding how speeding impacts a crash.

 

On Interstates, speeding can have the following consequences:

 

• The probability of death, disfigurement, or debilitating injury grows with higher speed at impact. Such consequences double for every 10 MPH over 50 MPH.

• When a vehicle crashes it undergoes a rapid change in speed. However, the occupants keep moving at the vehicle’s previous speed until they are stopped, either by hitting an object or by being restrained by a safety belt or airbag.

• The effectiveness of restraint devices like airbags, safety belts, crumple zones, and side beams decline as impact speed increases.

• 37% of the speed-related crashes result in injuries.

• Speeding extends the distance required to stop a vehicle in emergency situations.

• Crash severity increases with the speed of the vehicle at impact.

• Speeding reduces a driver’s ability to navigate safely around curves or objects in the roadway.

• Speeding can lower gas mileage by 33% at highway speeds.

 

Drivers are reminded to be proactive to prevent traffic crashes, fatalities, and to reduce injuries on the roadways by being cognizant of our speed, obeying the speed limit signs and all traffic laws.

 

If you would like more information about Illinois Speed Awareness Day, please visit http://www.illinoisspeedawarenessday.org

 

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2018 Burlington Kennel Club Dog Show Coming to Macomb this Weekend

The Burlington Kennel Club (BKC) Dog Show will be returning to Macomb tomorrow for the third straight year and continue through Sunday, July 22 at Western Illinois University's Rec Center. With an estimated 200 exhibitors from over twenty states, this event provides a welcome boost to Macomb’s summer economy. 
 
The event begins at 8 a.m and will feature hundreds of different dogs representing dozens of AKC breeds. People will even have a chance to interact with the dogs in the grooming area of the gym. There one can learn about certain breeds, what is involved in showing a dog, and view the dogs being prepared to enter the show ring. 
 
The Humane Society of McDonough County will also be accepting donations of pet food for their pet food pantry. They will be holding a raffle giving away Walmart gift cards for those who donate food.
 
On Saturday, the BKC will be debuting the Beginner Puppy Competition, which begins at 10:30 a.m. These puppies are between four and sixth months old. There is another event on Saturday with two of the K-9 dogs who serve Macomb , Kenzo and Drax, and they will perform a demonstration at 1 p.m. There will be a basket of toys to also raffle off and the proceeds will be split between the two service dogs. 
 
I spoke with Joyce Johanson, who is competing in the dog show, earlier this morning and she encouraged people to come experience a dog show for themselves. 
 
"We really are encouraging spectators to come and see what dog showing and pure bred shows are all about. A lot of times people just get to see the end of the show. T.V. just shows the final group judging and the best in show judging, and that's all very exciting, but there is a lot that comes before that as each indivdual breed has its own competition."
 
AKC has seven different groups of dogs competing for that big prize, so make sure you stop by to check out the wide variety of dogs in the rec center this weekend. 
 
Admission to the show is $3 for those 12 and older, $1 for kids ages 5-11 and those under 5 get in free. 
 
My full interview with Amy Betz, from the McDonough County Humane Society, and Joyce Johanson can be found here: 
 

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Local 12U Softball Team Qualifies for their Third Straight National Tournament

A local softball team is going to the Northern National Tournament in Yankton, South Dakota. 
 
The 12U CATS softball team from McDonough County have qualified for the tournament for the third year in a row. The team finished in 1st place after two national qualifiers in Washington, IL and Moline, IL to become eligible for the National Tournament. 
 
The National Tournament begins on July 26 and runs through July 29. The CATS will be playing teams from multiple states and after finishing in 2nd and 5th place the past two years, they are looking forward to playing for that 1st place trophy. 
 
You can help support the team in a couple ways. They have a fundraiser going on right now called Adopt-A-Cat. I spoke with one of the players, Kylie Robinson,  this morning and she briefly explained how it works. 
 
"You can go on our facebook page and email us and ask if you can adopt a certain player, and it costs 100 dollars" 
 
You can visit their facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/McDonoughCountyCATS/?ref=page_internal
 
The team will also be having a car wash tomorrow at the Hy-Vee gas station in Macomb from 4:30-6:30 p.m. to help support their trip to Nationals. The car wash is free, but donations are accepted.
 
My full interview with three of the CATS players can be found here:

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State Sen. Tracy-Sponsored Quincy Veterans' Home Rehabilitation Act Now a Law

The Quincy Veterans’ Home may now begin its five-year capital development plan after
State Sen. Jil Tracy signed the Senate Bill 3128. It which provides design-build
contracting for the facility’s projects. Governor Bruce Rauner enacted the legislation on
July 17 in Springfield.
 
“Securing the design-build contract is one of the final steps to kick start the Quincy
Veterans’ Home $52-million capital development plan,” said Tracy. “Over the next five
years, the campus will undergo a major rehabilitation to update the care facilities and
residence to ensure it is up to code and safe for all of our veteran residents and their
families. I’m glad to see the Governor taking such swift action to begin construction on
one of Quincy’s most important landmarks.”
 
Senate Bill 3128 authorizes the Capital Development Board (CDB) and the Illinois
Department of Veteran Affairs (IDVA) to use design-build contracting in the upcoming
projects at the veterans' home. It also provides for the deposit and use of federal funds
received as reimbursement for capital improvement project expenses.
 
The legislation details that the state construction agency is required to comply with
federal regulations to stay eligible for federal aid for the renovation, restoration,
rehabilitation or rebuilding of the Quincy Veterans' Home. To ensure compliance, the
Governor’s Office, CDB and IDVA must provide the General Assembly with un-redacted
copies of all correspondence with the United States Department of Veterans Affairs
related to securing funding for the development projects.
 
“The Quincy campus is the largest veterans’ home in Illinois, and this remodel will be
life-changing for its hundreds of residents,” said Tracy. “The plan will also allow for the
residents to continue living in the facility undisturbed during the construction.”
The Act is effective for five years, and CDB may not impose fees for contracts awarded
under the Quincy Veterans' Home Rehabilitation and Rebuilding Act.

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Local Resident Hired to Coordinate Regional Professional Development Consortium

Julia Burns of Macomb is hired by Regional Offices of Education #26 and #33 as the
new Professional Development Coordinator to help the two regional offices expand and
improve their PD Consortium serving eight counties stretching from Galesburg to
Macomb.
 
The two ROEs created the PD Consortium to better coordinate resources and provide
more professional learning opportunities for educators in their regions. Burns will
provide in-service training and staff development opportunities, schedule Administrator
Academies, create and execute a detailed Regional Professional Development plan and
ensure the regions are informed and understand the latest research on school
improvement.
 
ROE26 Regional Superintendent John Meixner said Burns stood out among a group of
talented candidates. "We have been thrilled to see the phenomenal success of our PD
Consortium, and we believe Julia has the right combination of skills, experience and
vision to help us guide our educators and improve instruction for students in classrooms
throughout our regions.”
 
Burns says the move to PD Coordinator is a natural evolution in an education career
devoted to helping students reach their potential. "I view myself as an instructional
leader. I moved from a teaching position to principal with the hope that I could influence
more students with the practices and initiatives about which I was passionate," Burns
said. "As the coordinator for the PD Consortium, I believe that I will have an even
broader reach."
 
After graduating from college in Minnesota with a math education degree, Burns taught
at middle schools in Texas before returning to Illinois in the mid-1990s. She has taught
at Carl Sandburg College and at Macomb Junior and Senior High School, and most
recently she has been principal at West Central Middle School in Stronghurst.
 
ROE 33 Regional Superintendent Jodi Scott said hiring Burns is an important step for
the PD Consortium. “Julia brings to our office a real passion for education, and she will
greatly help us ensure our programs are helping educators lead children to reach their
full potential.”

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Illinois Department of Human Rights Releases Important New Guidebook for Housing Providers

The Illinois Department of Human Rights (IDHR) is releasing a first-of-its-kind
Guidebook that will help housing professionals eliminate housing discrimination and
achieve diverse, inclusive communities.
 
The Guidebook offers clarification on which accommodations and modifications must be
made in housing for persons with disabilities, in accordance with the Federal Fair
Housing Act.
 
"This Guidebook is unique because it compiles all the "must have" information in one
place,” says IDHR Director Janice Glenn. "This Guidebook will act true resource for all
housing professionals on the accommodation and modifications they are required to
provide under the Federal Fair Housing Act and will create greater access, to housing,
to persons with disabilities. This is a huge accomplishment for Illinois and releasing a
guidance of this nature is a great way to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Federal
Fair Housing Act."
 
The Guidebook was created by IDHR in partnership with Access Living, a Chicago
based change agent committed to developing an inclusive society that enables
Chicagoans with disabilities to live fully–engaged and self–directed lives.
 
“Expanding housing options for people with disabilities is critical for our community to be
fully integrated into society. The right to reasonable accommodations and modifications
is one of the best tools we have to achieve that end,” said Marca Bristo, CEO and
President of Access Living. “We hope the Guidebook becomes a ‘go to’ resource for
housing providers and serves to demystify the requirements.”
 
It comes as we celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Federal Fair Housing Act, an
important civil rights law that guarantees equal access to housing for all Americans by
prohibiting discrimination in the sale, rental and financing of housing.
 
It was funded from the Department of Housing and Urban Development and is available on IDHR’s

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Duckworth, Durbin Statement on FCC's Sinclair-Tribune Merger Action

Following Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Ajit Pai’s statement
yesterday expressing “serious concerns” about Sinclair Broadcast Group’s proposed
acquisition of Tribune Media, U.S. Senators Tammy Duckworth and Dick Durbin
released the following statement:
 
“After months of sounding the alarm on a proposed merger that would provide
questionable public benefit, pose a threat to localism and diversity and reduce
competition in Illinois, this is a positive step from the FCC that underscores our
concerns,” the Senators said. “We look forward to the FCC’s hearing designation order
and hope the Commission will protect the public interest by blocking this merger once
and for all.”
 
In April, Duckworth, Durbin, and 20 of their Senate colleagues called on Chairman Pai
to end all media ownership, rulemaking, and pending merger reviews until the
commission completes a review of the U.S. broadcast landscape and the federal court
makes its ruling on the FCC’s previous media ownership actions. In January, the
Senators and eight colleagues insisted that the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ)
Antitrust Division and FCC closely scrutinize media mergers that fall within their
jurisdictions, particularly the proposed Sinclair Broadcasting-Tribune Media merger.
 
Last year, Duckworth, Durbin, and 12 Senate colleagues requested the inspector
general of the FCC to open an investigation into the objectivity and impartiality of the
FCC’s review of the proposed merger of Sinclair Broadcasting and Tribune Media. In
their letter to the inspector general, the senators point out 16 actions and events that
suggest a disturbing pattern of a three-way quid-pro-quo involving Sinclair, the Trump
Administration and Chairman Ajit Pai.

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Sunday at Spring Lake

There is an upcoming event in the local area that is great for the whole family. The First Christian Church and First Presbyterian Church are sponsoring the event, called Sunday at Spring Lake,  which will be from 2-7 p.m. this Sunday, July 22. 
 
There are various activites planned like a bible story/craft, games, fishing, pontoon boat rides, and a guided hiking trail. You may do all the events or just choose some to participate in. 
 
"If you can't do all of it, can't do the hike, don't worry about it. There will be different places just to sit and relax, so bring a lawn chair and come and join us at the lake this Sunday." said Kelly Ingersoll, who is a minister at First Christian Church. 
 
There will be musical entertainment from The Troublesome Ridge Bluegrass Band who will provide a sing-along opportunity as well. A hot dog roast with watermelon and S'Mores is also planned. 
 
People of all ages are invited to spend a fun-filled day over at Spring Lake on Sunday. Children 12 and under must be accompanied by a parent/adult and children under 18 must have a signed parental permission waiver to attend. Anyone 16 and older must have a valid fishing license. Fishing poles and life jackets will be provided, as well as a first-aid station and watering hole. 
 
If necessary, both churches will provide transportation to the park at 1:30 p.m. and plan to arrive back at the church at approximately 7:30 p.m. Call the First Christian Church at 309-837-6473 or The First Presbyterian Church at 309-833-3333 if you need a ride. There will also be transportation up and down the hill at Spring Lake for those who need it. 
 
You can register for the event online https://form.jotform.us/81794453404157 , at the church, or at the park at the large shelter. 
 
My full interview with Kelly Ingersoll can be found here 
 

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Western Illinois University Prepares for the Future

Western Illinois University is investing in some of its most notable academic programs as the future of the University depends on the reorganization of these programs.
 
"Two years ago, we established the President's Executive Institute to signify that we will be an innovative and forward-thinking institution that is on the cutting edge of operations and services as we interact with external communities for the good of the University and communities that we serve. Today, we take Western's innovation to a higher level," said WIU President Jack Thomas. "We are investing in our academic programs and service operations that will further place Western Illinois University on the leading edge and position our institution for growth, as we prepare students, faculty, and staff to lead in diverse and dynamic communities. With our new Strategic Plan, the President's Executive Institute and our investments, we enter the future. "
 
According to Thomas, Neumann will be in charge of the new academic plan that is based on the strength of its programs. The focus includes science and technology, business, education, community service and regional and state need.  
 
"As Dr. Thomas has shared, Academic Affairs will restructure and reorganize as we continuously evolve and improve to meet our goals of attracting and retaining students. To determine where we are going, we must evaluate the outcomes of where we have been," Neumann said. "We have seen strong and successful outcomes in the academic areas of business, education, community service, science, technology, and in areas that meet the need of our region. These have been built on a solid foundation of general education to enhance and reinforce the importance of critical thinking, solid communication skills, the pursuit of knowledge, diversity and wellness. Long term, these Centers of Excellence will define and form our investment structure in academics within our four academic colleges."
 
The reorganization of colleges and departments includes:
 
College of Arts and Sciences- Select departments will form two new schools: the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, and the School of Natural Science and Mathematics, in addition to biology, the School of Nursing and psychology.
 
College of Business and Technology- Economics will join accounting and finance to form the School of Accounting, Economics and Finance, and engineering technology will merge with the School of Engineering to form the School of Engineering and Engineering Technology.
 
College of Education and Human Services- Emergency management will join the School of Law Enforcement and Justice Administration to capitalize on the natural commonalities in these disciplines. Social work will return to a department dedicated to that discipline with additional discussions underway about how best to support the remaining disciplines in health sciences. The various programs dedicated to education will merge to form the School of Education.
 
College of Fine Arts and Communication- graphic design and graphic communication will be brought together to increase and improve the student experience in the area of graphics.
 
The creation of centers of excellence include:
 
Business with focus on accounting, finance, human resource management, management, marketing (including fashion merchandising) and supply chain management. 
 
Education and Community Services with focus on education, law enforcement and justice administration, fire science, kinesiology (including dietetics/nutrition), social work and recreation, park and tourism administration (including hospitality).
 
Regional with focus on agriculture, broadcasting and journalism, communication, counseling, economics, English, museum studies, math, music, nursing, theatre, public health, psychology and speech pathology and audiology.
 
Science and Technology with focus on biology, chemistry, computer science, construction management, cyber security, engineering, engineering technology, GIS, information systems and physics.
 
Creation of new online degree programs:
 
Undergraduate: Accountancy, economics, finance, geography and GIS, human resource management, law enforcement and justice administration, management, marketing, sociology and supply chain management.
 
Graduate: Educational studies, geography, liberal arts and sciences, and sport management, as well as minors in business, finance, history, nonprofit administration, philosophy and pre-MBA.
 
Post graduate certificates: Community development and planning and GIS analysis
 
Facilities enhancements: As a result of donations, a law enforcement and justice administration crime lab will be established in Tillman Hall, and the Centennial Honors College will move to Simpkins Hall.
 
Recruitment: Internal recruitment to encourage eligible WIU students to explore integrated degree program opportunities to earn bachelor and master degrees in five years.
 
Dual Enrollment: Greater emphasis on high school dual enrollment programs, with 10 new agreements established.
 
WIU-Quad Cities: New classes/programs will be established at WIU-QC including psychology and social work undergraduate degrees; a hybrid speech pathology and audiology program; and select ROTC courses.
 
WIU Board of Trustees Chair Carolyn Ehlert Fuller is confident in President Thomas and his team's ability to lead Western in this advancement of the institution's quality, opportunity and affordability.
 
"We were extremely pleased with the creation and adoption of the new Higher Values in Higher Education Strategic Plan. This plan, coupled with today's announcements, show that Western Illinois University is positioning itself for the future," Ehlert Fuller said. "The Board thanks President Thomas and his leadership team for advancing our great University. We look forward to realizing the plans set forth today."
 
"Western is entering a future that defines its unique mission and niche within Illinois public higher education. Thank you for ensuring optimal use of limited state resources by focusing on your centers of excellence. This is what defines you as a University community and an integral component to Illinois public higher education. Western is truly an outstanding institution and I know that you will be successful in your endeavors," said Illinois Board of Higher Education Executive Director Al Bowman.
 
The archived live stream of the press events can be found on the University's YouTube channel here https://www.youtube.com/user/WesternIllinoisU/videos
 
"Western Illinois University is further positioning itself for the future. We are a preeminent institution in terms of quality, and we will have a new academic structure, state-of-the-art equipment to support our leading edge instruction, new admissions teams and an increased emphasis on student persistence and completion," Thomas added. "Today, we take the next step in academic excellence as a leading institution." 
 

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Illinois State Fire Marshal announces $2.2 million in Small Equipment Grants

The Illinois State Fire Marshal is announcing the recipients of their Small Equipment Grant on Tuesday, July 17, 2018 at the Collinsville Fire Station, 130 S. Clinton, Collinsville, IL 62234.

 

This grant allows fire departments and not-for profit ambulance services across the state to purchase safety equipment, protective clothing, breathing apparatus, and other needed tools.

 

One-hundred grants totaling $2.2 million are being awarded.

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Regional Media Grand Auction Bid Items

In case you missed it, here is a list of our bid items for our Grand Auction.  Call 837-5551 to place your bid today!

From Discount Furniture and Bedding: Brown Leather reclining sofa, Retail Value $999.00

 

From Gamage TV & Appliance: Gen Air 34" Downdraft Cook Top in White.  Retail Value $1995.00

 

Also from Gamage TV & Appliance: 65" Haier Ultra HDTV, Smart TV with Chromecast, Retail $1600.00

 

 

 

From M&B Furniture: La-Z-Boy plush, chocolate brown recliner, Retail Value $829

 

 

From Sunroom Designers: 

  1. standard insulated steel door and frame with installation included       Retail value: $1275.00
  2. storm door and frame with installation included                                  Retail value: $975.00

 

From Cassady Martial Arts Academy: 1 year Full Membership                 Retail Value: $1200.00        

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Regional Media Grand Auction Is Back!!!

The Regional Media Grand Auction returns today from 11 am to Noon on your favorite Regional Media Station.  The Grand Auction will air each weekday 11 am to Noon for the next couple of weeks, giving you the chance to bid or buy on awesome items from these local retailers:

 

Western Illinios Detailing
Adair Cafe
Gamage TV & Appliance
Hart's Nursery
Nelson's Clothing
Sunroom Designers
Tillitt Collision Center
Cuba Corner Power Wash
El Rancherito
Larry A's
Rocky's Bar and Grill
Sweet Shack 2.0
Tink's Cafe
Highway Family Restaurant
Nomad Tattoo
Gelsosomo's Pizza
Cassady Martial Arts Academy
Scotties Fun Spot
M&B Furniture
Dominos
Tattoo Blue
HyVee
Jimmy Johns
Dad's Garage
Make Fit Happen
Discount Furniture and Bedding
Peoria Riverfront Museum
More Medical
Rubix Vaporizors & Smoking Accessories
The Flower Post
Gamage Tv & Appliance
Behr Necessities Custom Cakes & Coffees

 

Don't miss your chance to grab a great deal and save up to 70% on select items.  It's never too early to start Christmas shopping for family and friends or treat yourself to something you have been needing.  Tune in each weekday from 11 am to Noon for the Regional Media Grand Auction!

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Allergy Treatments Added to MDH Ear, Nose, and Throat Clinic

The McDonough Medical Group’s Ear, Nose and Throat clinic has added an Allergy clinic for new and existing patients. Starting today, July 16, patients can call to schedule an allergy appointment. 
 
The Ear, Nose and Throat staff of Jeffrey Sparks, D.O. and Kamie McKee, NP-C are accepting allergy patients ages 10 and older. Both Sparks and McKee have increased their knowledge about treatments by recently attending a national allergy education course. 
 
“We are excited to offer this new service to the residents of west-central Illinois. This service has not been readily available to area residents in the past,” said Dr. Sparks. “We offer allergy testing and immunotherapy treatments for people suffering from allergies on a daily basis.”
 
You can call the MDH Ear, Nose and Throat clinic at (309) 833-6937 to make an appointment. 
 

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Cyclospora Infections in Illinois Possibly Linked to Fast Food Chain

The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) has received confirmation of approximately 90 cases of cyclosporiasis, an intestinal illness caused by the microscopic Cyclospora parasite. 

 

Cases have been reported in counties across Illinois with people becoming ill starting in mid-May. The initial investigation indicates a link to consumption of McDonald’s salads produced for McDonald’s restaurants.  Approximately one-fourth of Illinois cases reported eating salads from McDonald’s in the days before they became ill. 

 

“Although a link has been made to salads sold in McDonald’s restaurants in some Illinois cases, public health officials continue to investigate other sources,” said IDPH Director Nirav D. Shah, M.D., J.D.  “If you ate a salad from McDonald’s since mid-May and developed diarrhea and fatigue, contact a health care provider about testing and treatment.”

 

McDonald’s says it is in the process of removing these salads from its restaurants and distributions centers.  McDonald’s say it is re-supplying restaurants with salads from other suppliers.

 

People can become infected by consuming food or water contaminated with feces (stool) that contains the parasite.  Cyclospora is not spread directly from one person to another.

 

Symptoms usually begin about a week after exposure, although some people who are infected may not have any.  Symptoms may include the following:

  • Frequent bouts of watery diarrhea (the most common symptom)
  • Loss of appetite and weight
  • Cramping, bloating, and/or increased gas
  • Nausea (vomiting is less common)
  • Fatigue
  • Low-grade fever

 

Cyclospora infection can be treated with specific antibiotics.  If not treated, the illness may last for a few days to a month or longer. 

 

Previous cyclosporiasis cases have been linked to various types of imported fresh produce including raspberries, basil, snow peas, and lettuce. 

 

More information can be found on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website.

 

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Downtown Macomb Announces Business Retail Competition

Macomb Downtown Development and the Illinois Small Business Development Center have joined forces to bring entrepreneurs and new businesses to Macomb.

 

Future business owners have attended a series of classes/workshops over the last six weeks to learn how to run a small business, including writing a business plan. The entrepreneurs will then write their own business plans and create their own pitches for their prospective businesses. Both the business plans and the business pitches will be judged.

 

“Come and support these entrepreneurs in their business ideas and find out who will be the winner of $28,000 in incentives,” stated Kristin Terry, Downtown Development Director.

 

Join these future entrepreneurs on Thursday, July 19, 2018 at the Forum, located at 124 N. Lafayette Street. Doors will open at 5:30pm and pitches will begin promptly at 6:30pm.

 

For more information, contact Downtown Development at 309-575-3015 or facebook/downtownmacomb.

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Beware of Bats and Exposure To Rabies

The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) is reminding people to beware of potentially rabid bats and other animals. This year, 17 bats have tested positive for rabies. The number of bats submitted for testing has ranged from 1,300 to 1,700 each year over the past five years, but the number testing positive for rabies is typically around three percent. More bats are typically submitted for testing in August and September. 
 
"People can receive preventive treatment if they are exposed to an animal infected with rabies," said IDPH Director Nirav D. Shah, M.D. "Although most bats are not infected with rabies, it's important handling bats, get and keep your pets vaccinated, and make sure your home has no openings where bats can come in. 
 
Rabies in bats can only be diagnosed by laboratory testing. General appearance of sickness or a change in the animal's normal behavior are signs that a bat or other animal could have rabies. However, you can't tell just by looking at a bat if it has rabies. Only in instances when a person or pet has been exposed to a bat will the bat need to be tested for rabies. Bats, like all wild animals, should never be handled. 
 
Do not feed, touch, or adopt wild animals or stray dogs or cats. If you find yourself near a bat (in your home or other indoor area) close the door to the room where the bat is and call the local health department. They can help determine if you could have been exposed to rabies and if the bat needs to be tested. If you are bitten by a bat or other animal, you should seek medical attention immediately. 
 
To keep your pets safe, make sure they are vaccinated and don't allow them to roam freely. If a wild animal comes on your property, bring children and pets inside and allow the animal to wander away. If the animal is acting abnormally, contact animal control.
 
More information about rabies can be found at www.dph.illinois.gov
 

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WIU to Host Press Events July 16 at Macomb, QC to Unveil Academic Plans

Members of the Western Illinois University community and residents are invited to attend press events on the Macomb and Quad Cities campuses. On July 16th WIU President Jack Thomas and Interim Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Kathy Neumann will unveil plans for the University’s realignment and growth.
 
The Macomb campus event will be held from 10:30-11:30 a.m. in the University Union Brattain Lounge and will also be live streamed to the University's Facebook page and WIU's YouTube channel. The Quad Cities campus event will be held from 2:30-3:30 p.m. in Riverfront Hall, rooms 103/104 and will be live streamed to the WIU-QC Facebook page and WIU YouTube channel. 
 
Thomas and Neumann, along with Joe Rives, Vice President of Quad Cities and Planning, will share the University's plan for investments in high demand academic programs. 
 
For more information about the July 16 events, contact University Relations at (309) 298-1993 or email DR-Shinberger@wiu.edu
 

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Updates from MDH Board of Directors Special Meeting

The McDonough District Hospital Board of Directors held a meeting on Monday night (July 9). Chairman Dr. Rick Iverson spoke on the topic of dissolving the consulting contract with Juniper Advisory. The company provided an evaluation of MDH and current status of regional healthcare during a MDH Board of Directors meeting in June.
 
“We have been engaged with an outside consulting firm, Juniper Advisory LLC, to assess healthcare delivery in our region. They also discussed strategies we could consider as we seek to understand what is best for MDH and our future success,” said Iverson. “However, in light of our transition of leadership and the need to focus on our search for our long-term CEO - and the need to study internally just what our needs are for the future - we have discontinued our relationship with Juniper Advisory. We could still reengage with them in the future if we decide that is in our best interest. We feel it is in our best interest to continue an internal examination of our needs, opportunities and strategies.”
 
The Board then discussed the Dolores Kator Switzer Women’s Center. The DKSWC was scheduled to be built in phases. After extensive discussions, the Board voted to instead do the entire project at once to better serve current and future MDH patients. 
 
Completing the project all at once will keep MDH from spending an extra $370,000 (estimated) and save 12-24 months of construction time – now scheduled to be fully completed by January 2020 says the Board.
 
“The McDonough District Hospital Medical and Nursing staff are greatly appreciative of the Board of Directors continued commitment of assuring that our community receives the highest quality care possible in up-to-date, state-of-the-art facilities designed to deliver optimum patient care,” said MDH interim CEO Brian Dietz.
 
With the construction of Health Services Buildings 1 underway (then eventually HSB 2), MDH will continue to evaluate and make improvements to better serve the people of west-central Illinois. 
 
In recent years, that commitment to facility improvements is shown by: the addition of the MDH Convenient Care Clinic inside Hy-Vee, opening the Bushnell Family Practice facility, the three-floor expansion in 2015 for Emergency Services, Senior Behavioral Health and Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation Services, and now the Dolores Kator Switzer Women’s Center.
 
To learn more about the DKSWC project or to donate call the MDH Foundation office at (309) 836-1757 or log onto www.MDH.org.
 

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The National Kidney Foundation of Illinois Fundraiser to Take Place at Local Restaurant

There will be a fundraiser for The National Kidney Foundation of Illinois this Saturday, July 14 beginning at 12 p.m. at The Nugget Bar & Family Restaurant, 119 W. Main St in Industry, IL.

 

The Nugget Bar and Family Restaurant is owned by Steve Reed. In 2006, Steve moved to Canton, IL but his kidneys slowly started to fail. Steve went on Dialysis for 5 years, which was a tough process, but was worth it because he eventually got his name on the kidney donor list and received a transplant. It was during this time that Steve started remodeling his restaurant and 4 years later opened The Nugget Bar & Family Restaurant.

 

He will be hosting The Kidney Foundation Fundraiser at The Nugget for the first time this Saturday to raise money and find potential organ donors. The event begins at noon and there will be half-pound Pub Burger sales, raffles & prizes including a TV set, diabetes education, and an organ donor sign up. All of the proceeds will go towards donations to assist The National Kidney Foundation of Illinois. There will also be music during the event. Sean Griffith of Bucket Fish will be performing from 2-6 p.m. and Cold Snap will be performing 7-11 p.m.

 

During my interview with Steve this morning, he expressed his gratitude for the people who are thinking about going.

 

"I appreciate people coming by and saying hi, and maybe see and witness what the possibilities are, what transplant can really do for folks in their lives." 

 

My full interview with Steve can be found here 

 

For any questions or to find more details about the event visit http://www.thenuggetbarandfamilyrestaurant.com/kidney-fundraiser.html

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2018's Most & Least Energy-Expensive States

July tends to be the hottest month of the year. Many of us are already cooling down our houses with A/C. But, while you dry your sweat under cool air, you should also consider the month’s higher-than-usual power bill. It could burn a hole through your wallet. 

 

In the U.S., energy costs eat between 5 and 22 percent of families’ total after-tax income, with the poorest Americans, or 25 million households, paying the highest of that range. And lower energy prices don’t necessarily equate to savings. Where we live and how much energy we use are a big part of the equation.

 

To better understand the impact of energy on finances relative to their location and consumption habits, WalletHub compared the total monthly energy bills in each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia. Their analysis uses a formula that accounts for these residential energy types: electricity, natural gas, motor fuel and home heating oil.

 

Total Energy Costs by State (1-10)

Overall Rank*

State

Total Energy Cost

Monthly Electricity Cost (Rank)

Monthly Natural-Gas Cost (Rank)

Monthly Motor-Fuel Cost (Rank)

Monthly Home Heating-Oil Cost (Rank)

1

Wyoming

$372

$112
(38)

$37
(12)

$221
(1)

$1
(26)

2

Connecticut

$366

$156
(3)

$37
(16)

$126
(37)

$47
(3)

3

Georgia

$349

$154
(4)

$39
(11)

$157
(15)

~ $0
(42)

4

Alabama

$341

$173
(2)

$18
(41)

$150
(17)

~ $0
(39)

5

Mississippi

$340

$147
(9)

$15
(48)

$178
(2)

~ $0
(51)

6

Alaska

$338

$136
(16)

$58
(1)

$107
(49)

$37
(5)

7

Indiana

$337

$129
(25)

$33
(22)

$175
(4)

~ $0
(29)

8

West Virginia

$332

$147
(8)

$24
(33)

$158
(13)

$3
(15)

9

Oklahoma

$331

$132
(19)

$30
(25)

$168
(6)

~ $0
(44)

10

North Dakota

$330

$132
(23)

$20
(38)

$175
(3)

$3
(14)

 

The full report can be found here https://wallethub.com/edu/energy-costs-by-state/4833/

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Macomb Area Chamber of Commerce Ribbon Cutting for New Member

The Ambassador Committee of the Macomb Area Chamber of Commerce held a ribbon cutting today for brand new Chamber member, Greaser’s Garage, located at 525 East Jackson Street in Macomb.

 

The owner, Bill (Knuckles) Dunaway and staff are marking their one-year anniversary in business with an open house celebration.

 

A full service auto repair shop, Greaser’s Garage can be reached at (309) 836-2411, email greasersgarage61455@gmail.com or find them on Facebook.

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Summit League Unveils Academic Honor Roll for 2017-2018

The Summit League has  unveiled its list of Academic Honor Roll honorees. A total of 1,203 Summit League student-athletes from across 17 sports were recognized for their efforts. 
 
The Student-athletes must have used a season of competition (year of eligibilty) in the sport in which he/she is nominated and have at least a 3.2 (on a 4.0 scale) cumulative GPA for the year awarded to be eligible. 
 
South Dakota led with 207 honorees followed by South Dakota State with 194 and North Dakota State with 157. Western Illinois University followed up with 115 honorees. 
 
The Academic Honor Roll breakdown by school is as follows:
 
South Dakota (207) 
South Dakota State (194)
North Dakota State (157)
Omaha (141)
Denver (126)
Western Illinois (115)
Oral Roberts (113)
Fort Wayne (92)
Eastern Illinois (35) - men’s soccer and swimming & diving associate member
Valparaiso (11) - men’s swimming & diving and men’s tennis associate member
llinois State (7) - men’s tennis associate member
Drake (5) - men’s tennis associate member
 
 

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Duckworth Statement on Long-Overdue Resignation of Scott Pruitt

“It’s abundantly clear that Scott Pruitt abused the public trust by using his government position to finance his lavish lifestyle. Pruitt wasted millions of taxpayer dollars on first-class plane tickets, private planes, luxury hotels, office furniture, and a large 24/7 personal security detail despite his own agency being unable to justify it. He is the subject of more than a dozen independent investigations, he retaliated against EPA staff who questioned his spending habits, and he likely violated ethics rules by renting an apartment from an industry lobbyist who did business with his office. The fact that Donald Trump allowed Pruitt to continue to serve in his cabinet and spend taxpayer money despite knowing all of this shows just how empty his promises to drain the swamp were.”

 

Duckworth voted against Pruitt’s nomination to be EPA Administrator in 2017. When reports surfaced exposing Pruitt’s wasteful and exorbitant spending of taxpayer dollars, Senator Duckworth asked a non-partisan government watchdog to investigate whether Pruitt’s EPA broke multiple federal laws. She called on Pruitt to resign or be fired in April and joined 165 Members of Congress in introducing a resolution calling for his resignation.

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Best Hotel Rewards Program - WalletHub

There are many hotel rewards programs that are the best at offering free perks. Some
amenities include free Wi-Fi, late check out, and bar credits for rewards members. But,
most importantly, the top hotel rewards programs let you earn free nights quickly,
redeem them with ease, and enjoy yourself without worrying about fine-print restrictions.
 
Every major hotel chain has its own free loyalty rewards program, but according to
WalletHub, these hotel rewards programs are not equally rewarding for everyone. Their
rules, earning rates and point values, plus perks are all different. It also depends on
where you travel, how often you stay in hotels, and how much you’re comfortable
spending per night.
 
WalletHub compared the 12 most popular hotel rewards programs using 21 key metrics,
ranging from point values to booking blackout dates. And they did so for three different
hotel budgets.
 
2017’s Best Hotel Rewards Programs:
 
Best Overall- Wyndham Rewards
Best Rewards Value- La Quinta Returns
Best for Points that Won't Expire- Best Western Rewards
Fewest Earning Limitations- Club Carlson
Best Redemption Options- Wyndham Rewards
Best for Transfer Partners- Hilton Honors
Best for International Travel: Marriott Rewards
 

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Best Gas Credit Cards According to WalletHub

Everyone knows that gas prices can be shaky, but many of the best gas credit cards can always help you save about 5% at the pump. For the average person, that’s around $130/year. People who have long daily commutes or enjoy the occasional road trip could benefit even more.
 
WalletHub has compared more than 1,000 credit card offers based on their fees and earning rates on fuel purchases. They also identified the top options for different types of drivers, specific chains, and gas rewards at any station.
 
This content is not provided or commissioned by any issuer. Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of an issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by an issuer.
 
Here are 2018's Best Gas Credit Cards:
 
Points at Any Station: PenFed Platinum Rewards Visa Signature® Credit Card
Cash Back at Any Station: Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express
Bad Credit: Discover it Secured
Business: Ink Business Cash Credit Card
Students: Discover it Student chrome
Fair Credit: ExxonMobil Gas Card
Costco Members: Costco Anywhere Visa Card by Citi
Military Community: USAA Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card
Travel & Dining: Citi Thank You Premier Card
Gas Station Credit Card: Marathon Credit Card
Seniors: AARP Rewards Credit Card
 
More information about specific programs and their perks can be found on WalletHub.com; search “best hotel rewards”. You can also find out more about the different Credit Cards by visiting https://wallethub.com/best-gas-credit-cards/
 
 

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Illinois Ranked as 8th Strictest State on Speeding and Reckless Driving

Illinois has been ranked as the 8th strictest state for speeding and reckless driving, according to personal finance website, wallethub. 
 
The website conducted an in-depth analysis of strict and lenient states on speeding and reckless driving by researching multiple factors to determine these rankings. For example, Illinois ranked as the strictest state to count speeding tickets towards a suspension and fifth strictest state to enforce a maximum fine on the second reckless offense. 
 
A few of the rankings are explained here:
 
Speeding and Reckless Driving Penalties in Illinois (1=Strictest; 25=Avg.):
 
15th – Speeding Automatically Considered Reckless Driving
29th – Average Increase in Cost of Insurance After One Speeding Ticket
1st – How Much Do Speeding Ticket Points Count Toward a Suspension
10th – Minimum Jail Time (first reckless offense)
13th – Minimum Jail Time (second reckless offense)
5th – Maximum Fine (second reckless offense)
 

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Local Independence Day Celebrations

Fourth of July Celebrations and Firework Shows in the Local Area

 

  • Macomb Independence Day Celebration: July 4, 2018 at approximately 9:30 p.m. in the Q-lot of Western Illinois University. Musical entertainment will be provided by the Macomb Municipal band and The King Graffiti Band. The food vendor is Boss Food Truck. If rained out, the event is rescheduled for July 5, 2018 at the same time and location.

 

  • Bushnell Independence Day Fireworks: July 4, 2018 at dusk at the Industrial Park on Route 9.

 

  • Rushville Independence Day Fireworks: July 4, 2018 at 9:45 p.m. at the Schuyler County Fairgrounds.

 

  • Carthage-Hancock County Independence Day Parade, Festival, and Fireworks: July 4, 2018. Parade begins at 10 a.m. in the historic downtown district of Carthage with the theme being “Christmas in July: Grateful for the Gift of Freedom.” There will also be live entertainment, a variety of games available, great food and multiple vendors. The fireworks show will begin around 9:30 p.m. near Illini West High School, 600 Miller Street.

 

  • Quincy Independence Day Celebration: July 4, 2018. Vendors open at 5 p.m. and the fireworks show begins at 9:30 p.m. on the riverfront at Clat Adams Park, Front & Broadway Streets, Quincy, IL.

 

  • La Harpe, Illinois Independence Day Celebration: July 4, 2018 beginning at 7 a.m. and the fireworks show is scheduled for 9:30 p.m. on the Lamoine Valley Golf Course.

 

  • Monmouth Independence Day Fireworks: July 4, 2018 at 9:30 p.m. The fireworks show will take place over Citizens Lake. Parking will be available on the baseball fields surrounding the lake.

 

  • Keokuk Independence Day Celebration: July 4, 2018. A Kiddy Parade with decorated bikes, trikes, and wagons will kick off the celebration at 11 a.m. at Triangle Park and will head to Rand Park at 11:30 a.m. The fireworks display is scheduled for 9:30 p.m. in Rand Park

 

  • Burlington, Iowa Independence Day Celebration: July 4, 2018. Starts at 6:30 a.m. Events will include musical entertainment at Broadway and Wheeler streets, a parade, and more. Fireworks will begin at 10:01 p.m. Admission is free.

 

  • Fort Madison, Iowa Independence Day Celebration: July 4, 2018. The 106th annual Charlie Korschgen Kiddie Parade will begin at 10 a.m. at the intersection of 18th Street and Avenue G.

 

  • Nauvoo Independence Day Fireworks: July 7, 2018 at 9:30 p.m. in downtown Nauvoo.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Newest Addition to Western Illinois Museum's "Our Front Porch" Series

Join organizers of the Western Illinois Museum for “Our Front Porch” to learn about

Abraham Lincoln’s visit to Macomb on August 25-26, 1858, for what proved to be an important moment in his political career.

 

As a guest at the elegant Randolph Hotel on the square, he and his advisors prepared to debate his rival Stephen Douglas. The program will re-enact the scene to imagine how Lincoln used his visit to craft the “Freeport Question” about slavery that catapulted him into national attention and, in 1860, helped clear his path to the presidency.

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