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Archive for April 3rd, 2012

Ottawa Mayor And Council Member Spar Over Beautification Grants

Posted by wlpo on April 3, 2012

Very few if any towns in the area have spent as much time and money on beautification projects as Ottawa.  A city commissioner wants to put the brakes on more of these types of plans.

When voting whether or not to pursue grants to install new lights on Columbus Street and re-fill the I & M Canal, Dan Aussem suggested a one-year moratorium on landscaping work.  He questioned how the city could ask workers to go without raises and yet spend money re-watering the canal or beautifying a downtown street.

Mayor Bob Eschbach was befuddled by Aussem’s stance saying money for the grants would come out of a TIF designed only for economic development and has nothing to do with city salaries.  Eschbach says the grants could be 80 percent funded by the federal government which to him would be a mistake to pass up.

The council tied on a vote to pursue the grants with Commissioner Ed Whitney joining Aussem in saying no.  Whitney thinks more money needs to be used to repair the Reddick Mansion.

After the vote Eschbach shook his head saying “I can’t believe it”.  Commissioner Dale Baxter missed the meeting enabling a tie vote.

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Ottawa Trying To Regulate Massage Parlors

Posted by wlpo on April 3, 2012

If you want to open a massage parlor in Ottawa you’ll have to close up shop at a decent time.

The city council put on file an ordinance amendment where massage establishments have  regular business hours of 8am until 8pm.  Mayor Bob Eschbach says hopefully it’ll eliminate future problems at this type of business offering massages until the wee hours of the morning.

Last month, the owner of Spa Rx voluntarily surrendered her business license after an employee was arrested for prostitution.

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Utica Fire Protection welcomes four new firefighters

Posted by wlpo on April 3, 2012

It takes a special kind of person to suit up and enter a home as heavy black smoke pours from the eves.  And responding to a serious car accident is not for the faint of heart.

The next time the fire trucks going rolling out of the Utica Community Fire Protection District station four new firefighters could be onboard.  Ben Ficek, Ryan Foster, Koty Gapinski, and Collin McCabe have been added to the roster after completing a cadet training program while they were under the age of 18.

The cadet program is open to teens ages 15-18 living in the Utica district.  It prepares them for fire and EMS.

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I-80 Pot Bust In Peru

Posted by wlpo on April 3, 2012

A man traveling thru the area from Oregon state got to visit the county jail.

Joseph Page was pulled over Sunday going eastbound on Interstate 80 in Peru.  Troopers say they found over 11 pounds of cannabis in his car.  Page was arrested for unlawful possession of cannabis with intent to deliver along with possession of drug paraphernalia.

He was taken to the county jail.

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Local Teens Accused Of Car Break-Ins

Posted by wlpo on April 3, 2012

A couple teens are accused of breaking into cars in Oglesby.

Cody Donnelly of Tonica and Tiara Daniels of Oglesby were arrested Monday morning for burglary.  They’re accused of stealing numerous things from vehicles.  Investigators say they found some of the stolen items when they arrested the pair.

Both Donnelly and Daniels were taken to the county jail.

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Oglesby Summer Festival To Feature Fireworks And Wrestling

Posted by wlpo on April 3, 2012

There will be fireworks in and out of a ring in Oglesby this summer.

Oglesby Mayor Don Finley says five businesses donated cash to pay for 75 hundred dollars worth of fireworks.  They’ll be shot off July 1st, the final day of the 2nd Annual Oglesby Fun Fest.  Because of the donations, Finley says no tax dollars will be spent on the fireworks.

Organizers of the local Dreamwave Wrestling organization also say they’ll put on a show at Oglesby Fun Fest prior to the fireworks.  The second annual fun fest will again be in the city pool area and will have food, a carnival, and live music.

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Annual Pow Wow Not Happening This Year

Posted by wlpo on April 3, 2012

The moccasins can stay in storage this year, there’s no Pow Wow happening in Utica.

Kathy Casstevens-Jasiek with Starved Rock Lodge says the annual Midwest SOARRING Foundation Pow Wow has been canceled.  It would’ve been the eight annual event.

Casstevens-Jasiek says the Native American heritage event is off because of economic conditions and years of rainy weather.  Last year’s Pow Wow was moved to Grand Bear Lodge because of flooding at Starved Rock State Park.

Organizers hope to bring the Pow Wow back next year, maybe at a different time of year instead of early spring.

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Mega Millions Winner Still A Mystery

Posted by wlpo on April 3, 2012

RED BUD, Ill. (AP) – Illinois Lottery officials say the holder of the state’s winning Mega Millions ticket for a three-way share of the $656 jackpot remains a mystery.

Lottery spokesman Mike Lang says the Illlinois winner hasn’t come forward with the ticket bought at the MotoMart convenience store in the southern Illinois town of Red Bud. Winning tickets also were sold in Kansas and Maryland, making each worth about $218 million. Winners in those states also have not yet come forward. Illinois law gives a prize winner one year to claim a jackpot.

The MotoMart store that sold the winning Illinois ticket will get $500,000 from the Illinois Lottery.

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