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Archive for August 16th, 2011

Ottawa Finds Taker For Value City Property

Posted by wlpo on August 16, 2011

A longtime eyesore will be no longer on the north side of Ottawa.

Bill Walsh Automotive Group is buying the Value City property and opening a new Ford-Lincoln-Kia dealership on the property.  Bill Walsh Jr. says they’ll keep the existing building but make major renovations to the site.  He says it will be almost unrecognizable when they’re done.

To entice Walsh, the Ottawa City Council is working towards establishing the I-80 Commercial TIF District which would cover not only Value City but the old Walmart and K-Mart properties.  Walsh says they’ll only develop the Value City property if it’s in a TIF.

This would be Ottawa’s seventh TIF district.

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Man accused of hiding painkillers in tubes of toothpaste

Posted by wlpo on August 16, 2011

A tube of toothpaste seems innocent enough but a man from California is accused of using them to haul prescription painkillers.

John Oliva was stopped Saturday morning for speeding on Interstate 80.  The drug dog became suspicious and police say a search of his car turned up approximately 6,500 pills hidden in nine tubes of toothpaste.  Oliva was arrested for possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver and was taken to the La Salle County Jail.

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Volunteers needed to remove human remains in La Salle

Posted by wlpo on August 16, 2011

An unusual volunteering opportunity could have you bringing your gloves and shovel to La Salle.

More volunteers are needed at a former cemetery that’s being excavated to make way for the new Ancare Veterinary Clinic.   La Salle Economic Development Director Don Alesky says they’ve been finding more remains than they had expected and could use help.

While a certified archeologist and funeral director are on site, they need people to sort out and bag remains.  Alesky says a machine does most of the work.

If you would like to help, call Alesky at (815) 488-4442 and have a shovel and set of gloves.

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Ottawa Woman was Murdered

Posted by wlpo on August 16, 2011

After five years of questions, a La Salle County Coroner’s Inquest says a woman from Ottawa was murdered.

When 32 year old Tracy Cusick was found dead in her bathroom back in January of 2006, officials said she drowned but that there was no foul play.  The case remained open, her body was exhumed and Ottawa Detective Dave Gualandri testified today that she was murdered.

Gualandri testified Cusick had several injuries including a fracture to her neck and an abrasion to her forehead which came from a ring she wore.  He also says that there’s no way a person can intentionally or unintentionally drown themselves using a toilet.

The inquest results have been passed along to the La Salle County State’s Attorney’s Office.

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Utica And Oglesby Working Out New Dispatch Deal

Posted by wlpo on August 16, 2011

Costs of just about everything seem to go up instead of down.  That’s the case for Utica getting fire and ambulance dispatching from Oglesby.

The Oglesby City Council is proposing a new dispatching contract where Utica pays them 11 thousand dollars a year starting December 1st.  The current agreement which hasn’t been changed in several years has Utica paying 87 hundred dollars for dispatching.  The agreement also puts in place an automatic yearly increase of 500 dollars.

Oglesby Public Safety Commissioner Tom Porter says the current contract and fee was outdated.  He says the Utica Fire Department is okay with paying more.

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Garage Issue Comes To Head In Spring Valley

Posted by wlpo on August 16, 2011

A nine-month long debate about an unfinished garage in Spring Valley has finally come to an end.

The NewsTribune reports a frustrated Spring Valley City Council voted to have the garage on Mary Street torn down within two weeks since part of it is on city property.  Before the vote, Mayor Cliff Banks mentioned that if they didn’t act and tear the garage down, people in town would think they don’t need building permits in the future.  The frustrations over the garage led Alderman Jim Taliano to resign as chairman of the public health and safety committee.

The garage owner, Richard Robeza says he was going to tear the garage down himself after permit and legal fees made it unfeasible for him.

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