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Archive for October 19th, 2010

Ottawa sewer rates to increase

Posted by wlpo on October 19, 2010

Sewer rates in Ottawa are going up $4 a month.

A study was just finished on the city’s CSO, or combined sewer overflow issue that the EPA mandates be fixed.  The Ottawa City Council spent nearly one million dollars on the study and they estimate it’ll cost at least $14 million to separate storm and sanitary sewers.

Mayor Bob Eschbach and other council members said their first choice wasn’t to raise sewer bills.  They’d like to set up a storm water management fee instead where a person pays based on size of property.  The city can’t do this because they’re not Home Rule style government.

Commissioner Dan Aussem was quick to say the council wasn’t using this issue as an “avenue to pass home rule”.  Home Rule Government was proposed a few years ago in Ottawa but was voted down handily.

Eschbach expects the $4 sewer increase to generate about $500,000 a year which will only pay a part of the planned sewer work.  He also mentioned looking at grants.

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United Way Executive Director announces she’ll be stepping down

Posted by wlpo on October 19, 2010

A local service organization will be looking for a new leader.  Andrea Walters announced Tuesday she was leaving her position as Executive Director of the Illinois Valley United Way.

Walters was chosen in early 2009 to replace the retiring Dixie Reed.  Walters had spent six years on the United Way board.  Her last day with the organization will be December 31.  She’s reportedly leaving because of a family reason.

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Local doctor receives an award

Posted by wlpo on October 19, 2010

A doctor that has had a hand in the local EMS system is being recognized by a statewide association.

Dr. Ricardo Calderon is the recipient of a Physician of Excellence Award from the Illinois Rural Health Association.  He’s one of 10 doctors in Illinois receiving the honors.

Calderon has a family practice with Illinois Valley Community Hospital and he’s the medical director of the local EMS system.

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USDA official makes a stop in La Salle to explain loan programs

Posted by wlpo on October 19, 2010

Looking for funding help, the Canal Corridor Association got it locally and nationally.

Judith Canales, the national administrator for Rural Business and Cooperative Programs with the USDA, stopped at the Lock 16 Visitor’s Center in La Salle Tuesday to talk about a $535,000 loan for the canal boat and visitor’s center.  The loan is thru the USDA and Centrue Bank.

Canales says her department wouldn’t have agreed to the 10-year loan if they thought the canal boat would sink financially.

Ana Koval, president of the Canal Corridor Association admitted that it’s been a struggle with the down economy and flooding issues.  She did say the canal boat and visitor’s center has added over $640,000 in revenue to downtown La Salle in 28 months.

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La Salle hires company to make City hall entrance accessible

Posted by wlpo on October 19, 2010

New hardware will make it easier for people with physical disabilities to enter La Salle City Hall on their own.  The city has hired Koolmaster to make the west side entrance from Second Street more accessible.  It’s the entrance that has a ramp.

A few other entrances are being upgraded including the Joliet Street entrance to the police department.  The project is estimated to cost $7,344.

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Crash In Spring Valley Injures One

Posted by wlpo on October 19, 2010

A woman from Peru was taken to the hospital after getting rear-ended Monday morning.

Spring Valley Police say Jacci Pavy was waiting to turn off of Spalding Street when she was hit from behind by Richard Parsons of Spring Valley.  Parsons told police he was reaching for his seatbelt when he crashed into Pavy.

Pavy was taken to St. Margaret’s Hospital.  Parsons wasn’t hurt but was ticketed for failing to reduce speed to avoid an accident.

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Area School Needs Your Vote

Posted by wlpo on October 19, 2010

You’ve been asked to vote online in support of a new baseball field, a chef in Utica, and now a struggling elementary school music program.

Logan Junior High in Princeton is among the finalists for a 50 thousand dollar grant or one of three 20 thousand dollars grants from Clorox.  The cleaning product company has over 13 hundred schools competing in their “Clorox Power A Bright Future” grant contest.

In Logan Junior High’s case, school officials say they need the grant to keep the elementary music program up and running because of late state funding.  Grant writers say that 2nd and 3rd graders in Princeton attend music class in an oversized storage closet due to space limitations and a budget shortfall.  The grant would allow the district to build a classroom dedicated to music.

School officials also point out that many parents can’t afford instrument rental for their students.  Grant money would also go towards this.

Here is the link to vote.  http://clorox.promo.eprize.com/brightfuture

You can vote everyday through November 1st.

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Alleged SUV Thief Is Caught

Posted by wlpo on October 19, 2010

Streator Police think they have one of two men in custody that ditched a stolen SUV after seeing a 9 year old boy and a dog were along for the ride.

20 year old Jerreme Thompson of Ottawa was arrested on a warrant Friday in Ottawa for unlawful possession of a stolen vehicle.  Investigators believe Thompson and another man around the same age stole a Ford Expedition the evening of October 3rd in the 600 block of Park Street.  They drove about six blocks before they noticed a boy and a dog were in the back seat.  When they saw the unplanned passengers, investigators say the men ditched the car and ran.  The boy got out, walked to someone’s house and was eventually reunited with his family unharmed.

The other suspect is white with a tattoo on the back of his neck.

If you have information, call Streator Police.

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Senior Housing Gets Go Ahead

Posted by wlpo on October 19, 2010

Final plans were approved last night for new senior housing in Oglesby.

The Oglesby City Council passed a final plat plan for the The Stough Group who wants a 50-unit housing development on nine acres west of the root beer stand.  The development will include a storm water detention pond, fitness center and community center.

The Stough Group has developments in Peru and Spring Valley.  The company plans to close on the sale of the land early next year.

One company official says they have a waiting list of 25 people.

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