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Archive for January 20th, 2012

Illinois unemployment rate drops to 9.8 percent

Posted by wlpo on January 20, 2012

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) – Unemployment in Illinois dropped to 9.8% in December. It was the second month in a row with a decrease

The Illinois Department of Employment Security said Friday that the unemployment rate fell despite the overall number of jobs in the state dropping by 4,100 in December. Statewide unemployment had fallen slightly in November to 10 percent after six straight months of increases.

Federal officials said earlier this week that national unemployment fell to a three-year low of 8.5% in December.

For all of 2001, Illinois unemployment rate averaged 9.4 percent. That was down almost a full percentage point from 2010.

Manufacturing employers added 2,200 jobs in December. That was more than any other type of employer. The biggest jobs losses were in construction, where firms cut 4,300 jobs.

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LPHS to add a counselor and deans while cutting to positions

Posted by wlpo on January 20, 2012

Changes coming to LP High School will give students more time with their guidance counselor and have two extra sets of eyes watching students.

A reorganization of student support staff will add a fifth guidance counselor and make two teachers part-time Deans of Students.

Superintendent Steve Wrobleski says students have a lot of contact with their counselor when they’re eighth graders and freshmen but that starts to wane.

The deans would be two qualified teacher’s who would handle student discipline part-time.  Wrobleski says that will let the principal and assistant principal have more time to work with teachers.  The positions of truancy officer and the interventionist would be cut.

They want to see the changes in place for the 2012-2013 school year.

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Roads left snow and ice covered

Posted by wlpo on January 20, 2012

Roads are snow and icy and it’s made driving dangerous.  Since the snow began falling late Friday morning, police have been called to many crashes, most of them not serious.

An evening crash on Route 251 south of Peru left a couple of people injured and had police rerouting traffic for about an hour.

Illinois State Police Trooper Craig Graham says if you have to be on the road, don’t follow too closely, have your lights on, and stay off your cell phone.

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Walnut Couple Accused Of Ditching Kids To Do Heroin

Posted by wlpo on January 20, 2012

A couple from Bureau County is out of custody after being accused of leaving their kids in a car while they shot up heroin in a gas station bathroom.

Georgina and Andrew Burr of Walnut were arrested Christmas Eve in Darien for possession of heroin and endangering the life of a child.  The couple’s accused of leaving their 10-year old son and 4-year old daughter in a running car while they did drugs in the bathroom.  Police were called after someone at the gas station said the couple was gone for 15 minutes.

Investigators say when they knocked on the bathroom door, both appeared high and parts of a syringe and blood were on the floor.  Georgina Burr also allegedly had several packets of white powdery substance.

The husband is due in court Monday while the wife’s next court date is February 6th.

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L-P Grad Wins Big On Jeopardy!

Posted by wlpo on January 20, 2012

A longtime dream became reality yesterday for an L-P graduate.  Class of ’77 Lynn Hammerlund appeared on the Jeopardy! Game show and won it.

Hammerlund got the final Jeopardy question of Wrigley Field right and took home over 22 thousand dollars, beating the next closest competitor by over nine thousand dollars.  She was in the lead from the start of the show thanks to two daily doubles and sweeping the category of Foreign.

Hammerlund is a 1977 graduate of L-P.  Back then she was Lynn Masterson.

She now lives in the suburb of Lake in the Hills.  Hammerlund is an associate professor at Judson University.

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Negro Creek Debate Rages On

Posted by wlpo on January 20, 2012

The debate over renaming Negro Creek is picking up steam.

In just 24 hours, a Facebook page called “Leave Negro Creek Alone” had 140 members.  The page is in response to a different Facebook page called “Lets Rename Negro Creek” which has over 180 members but has been up far longer.

Phillip Mol of DePue is pushing to change the name because of its racial meaning.  Some locals say the name is just part of that area’s history and shouldn’t be changed.

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Area Hunters Take Down Less Deer

Posted by wlpo on January 20, 2012

Counting all the different hunting seasons, nearly six thousand deer met their maker in the listening area.

In La Salle County, the total deer count for 2011 is 2,507, down about 200 from 2010.  In Bureau County, hunters nailed 2,356 deer last year, over 300 less than 2010.  Putnam County’s deer total is 908, down from just under a thousand a year ago.

The entire state shot down over 181 thousand deer last year, over 800 less than in 2010.

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