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Archive for July 27th, 2010

Chamber Responding To La Salle City Council Decision

Posted by wlpo on July 27, 2010

Illinois Valley Area Chamber of Commerce officials are expected to respond Wednesday to being dropped by the La Salle City Council.

IVAC Director Barb Koch says she’ll send out a press release spelling out her response to the decision by La Salle officials to not renew a 13 thousand dollar a year membership with IVAC.  The city council was unanimous in deciding not renew their membership.  They will reevaluate the situation in sixth months. 

The council barely approved renewing their membership last August. At the time Mayor Jeff Grove told Koch he thought they should be part of IVAC for another year, but there would be expectations and he would want to receive more feedback.  Grove and the aldermen feel that those expectations have not been met.

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Ottawa Could Host Another Senate Debate

Posted by wlpo on July 27, 2010

On the 152nd anniversary of the Lincoln-Douglas debate, Ottawa could again play a historic role in a United States Senate race.

Republican Mark Kirk wants seven debates in the race for President Barack Obama’s Senate seat.  Just as Ottawa was the first debate site in the Lincoln-Douglas race for Senate, Kirk wants Ottawa to host the first debate in his race against Democrat Alexi Giannoulias and Green Party candidate LeAlan Jones.

Kirk says the Ottawa debate would focus on foreign policy.

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Vacant Four Corners Lot Is Sold

Posted by wlpo on July 27, 2010

The old BP gas station on the four corners in Utica has a buyer.

Mayor Fred Esmond says a corporation closed on the purchase of the property last week and demolition has started on the station.  Esmond says the buyers haven’t given any indication on specific plans for the area but he thinks it could be used again as a gas station or a restaurant.

While they wait for the corner to be redeveloped, Esmond is just happy to have an eye sore gone.  Esmond’s own excavating company is doing demolition work at the site now.  The gas station closed over three years ago.

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Ottawa planning commission holds off on recommending school permit

Posted by wlpo on July 27, 2010

Whether it’s a new or old school, usually one thing remains the same.  Traffic is a mess at the beginning and end of the school day.

The Ottawa Planning Commission Monday night delayed accepting a conditional use permit for the new Central Intermediate School because of traffic congestion concerns.  Planning Commission member Brent Barron told elementary school officials they’ll have “one hell of congestion on McKinley Road” with a plan of having just one main entrance and exit to serve both Shepherd Middle School and the future Central Elementary.

City Planner Tami Huftel says traffic flow is also a concern of city officials.  Planning Commission members were also concerned about access to the back of the new school for emergency vehicles.

Engineer for the school district George Reagle says they’ll create three lanes in the existing road and have buses use a separate road on the west end of the property.  He admitted that “one intersection will be busy five minutes in the morning and afternoon no matter what they do”.

School officials plan to meet with the city engineer and fire chief this week and present traffic flow suggestions to the planning commission at a special meeting August 4th.  The school district wants to go out for bids on the new school later next month.

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Ottawa Police offer back-to-school shopping help

Posted by wlpo on July 27, 2010

The annual shop with cops program in Ottawa is back for another school year.

The Ottawa Police Benevolent & Protective Association is accepting applications for school supply assistance through Monday, August 2nd.  Applications are available at the Ottawa Police Station.  Family members, friends, church or school officials can submit names of needy children.

Police officials will call the families of children who are picked for the program and they’ll set up a date and time to go school supply shopping.

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