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Archive for August 19th, 2009

Council Backtracks On Two Year Old Vote

Posted by wlpo on August 19, 2009

Everyone makes decisions they later regret, including the Ottawa City Council.

The council last night unanimously voted to rescind a 2007 resolution that gave support for Ameren to put up power lines along the Illinois Railnet and Fox River until reaching the Wedron substation. The decision was met with a loud applause from people packing the council chambers against the particular route.

Commissioner Dan Aussem says he changed his mind because of the impact the lines could have on Skydive Chicago. He also doesn’t like the idea of cutting a 100 foot path of trees along the Fox River to make way for power lines, especially since Ottawa prides itself on being a Tree City USA community.

Mayor Bob Eschbach plans on drafting a letter to send to Ameren and the state to explain why the council changed its mine on a power line route.

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Superintendent positive about school budget

Posted by wlpo on August 19, 2009

Considering what’s going on with the state of Illinois, the La Salle Elementary District is in a good position financially, at least that’s what the superintendent believes.
Dan Marenda outlined the tentative budget for fiscal year 2010 Tuesday night. He pointed out a deficit in the education fund, largely due to a recently completed construction project at Northwest School. Still, the fund is looking at a $200,000 to $300,000 deficit.
Overall, the budget should end the year with a positive balance by $1.7 million. Marenda says the surplus would come from bonding he expects will come later in the year.
A budget hearing has been scheduled for September 22.

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More students at IVCC

Posted by wlpo on August 19, 2009

When the fall semester started Monday, parking lot spaces at Illinois Valley Community College could’ve been a lot harder to get than last fall.
IVCC President Jerry Corcoran says fall enrollment is up around 4% while credit hour numbers are up 13% from fall of 2008. He says the summer semester was even more impressive with enrollment up 20% and credit hours up over 30% from 2008. To put it in perspective, Corcoran says he usually budgets for a 1% increase or decrease for enrollment.
In the 20 years he’s been involved with IVCC, Corcoran says it’s the biggest enrollment jump he has seen. He thinks the area unemployment rate is the biggest factor. He also thinks aggressive marketing and lower costs has helped enrollment numbers.

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Vickery and other U of I trustees offer resignations

Posted by wlpo on August 19, 2009

Four more University of Illinois trustees have offered to resign in the wake of the scandal over the admission of well-connected students. Among them was local trustee Bob Vickery.
Other trustees offering their resignations Tuesday were Dr.
Kenneth Schmidt, the longest-serving of the nine trustees; David
Dorris, and Devon Bruce.
They say they would like to keep their positions and help the university mend its admissions system. They say their decisions were not an acknowledgment of wrongdoing, but rather a result of Governor Pat Quinn’s request that all nine trustees submit their resignations.
Quinn already has accepted resignations from Board Chairman Niranjan Shah and Lawrence Eppley, the former chairman.

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