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Archive for January 7th, 2013

Buzzi Unicem Fighting Tax Assessment

Posted by wlpo on January 7, 2013

Even though Buzzi Unicem hasn’t produced cement in Oglesby since 2008, they’re still a big part of the city’s property tax base.  Just how much in taxes they should pay is being debated.

Buzzi is balking at the county’s two million dollar equalized assessed valuation.  They think it should be around 500 thousand dollars. Oglesby legal counsel Jim Andreoni says when you make it about fair market value, Buzzi thinks its property is worth 1.5 million instead of the 6 million claimed by the assessor’s office.

Buzzi will have a hearing on their reassessment request January 29th in Ottawa.  Andreoni thinks it’ll eventually be negotiated out of court with Buzzi paying some amount less than assessed.

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La Salle County CASA seeking volunteers

Posted by wlpo on January 7, 2013

If you’re looking for a way to make a difference in your community and would like to become a volunteer, you might be interested in working with La Salle County Court Appointed Special Advocates, or CASA.

Special advocates work with children involved in abuse or neglect cases.  Cici Chalus is the Executive Director.  She says you would work on behalf of the judge by observing the child at home and in school writing an objective report for the judge.

Chalus says volunteers come from all types of backgrounds and have included retired teachers, nurses, professors or people who are studying human services.

A three-week, 30-hour training begins Thursday.  If you would like to be involved you can call their office at the Etna Road Complex in Ottawa.

You must be 21, pass a background check and have a valid driver’s license to volunteer.

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Peru garage fire considered accidential

Posted by wlpo on January 7, 2013

A fire that started in a garage on West Street in Peru spread to two neighboring garages and left a home with extensive smoke damage.  A passing police officer noticed the garage burning just after 12:30pm Monday.  Minutes later firefighters arrived to find the garage completely burning with flames spreading to two close garages.  Those garages were damaged, but not destroyed.

Peru Firefighter Matt McLaughlin says they had the flames knocked down in 10 minutes but were there for several hours.  Departments from Spring Valley, La Salle, and Oglesby helped.  The person that was home wasn’t hurt.

West Street near Washington Park was blocked off for a couple of hours.  A State Fire Marshall’s office investigator says the fire was accidental.

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Cocaine charges for man and woman in Streator

Posted by wlpo on January 7, 2013

A bar check in Streator left a man and woman facing cocaine related charges.  Michael Carbone and Destiny Lerma of Streator arrested Saturday by members of TRIDENT.

Police say they found the two while at Johnny Dollars Bar.  Carbone and Lerma allegedly had five grams of cocaine.

Carbone was arrested for possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver while Lerma was arrested for possession of a controlled substance.  They were taken to the La Salle County Jail.

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I-80 Pot Bust Includes A Sawed-Off Shotgun

Posted by wlpo on January 7, 2013

The latest drug arrest on Interstate 80 in the area also involved a weapon.

Troopers say they pulled over Jamison Wojciechowski of Colorado on Friday for allegedly speeding.  After searching his car, troopers say they found two pounds of cannabis and a loaded, sawed-off 12-gauge shotgun.  Wojciechowski was picked up for possession of cannabis.

His passenger, Jessie Jones of Colorado was arrested for possession of cannabis with the intent to deliver, aggravated unlawful use of a weapon and possession of an altered firearm.  Both men were taken to the La Salle County Jail.

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Abnormal Winter Continues

Posted by wlpo on January 7, 2013

There are plenty of things to complain about but the weather right now shouldn’t be one of them.

High temperatures for most of this week will be in the mid-40’s with the high topping 50 on Friday.  According to the National Weather Service, Chicago has set a record for the latest date for a sub-freezing high temperature and also for the most consecutive days without a high temperature below freezing at 310 straight days.

The windy city is also a day away from breaking the record of consecutive days without at least an inch of snow.  In the Illinois Valley, the next chance of snow is Saturday night.

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Wintry Conditions Blamed For Seneca Crash

Posted by wlpo on January 7, 2013

Wintry weather is blamed for a Seneca woman getting hurt in a crash.

Kira Herzog was on a county road Saturday west of Seneca when she lost control on the ice.  She slid into a ditch and hit a power pole.

Herzog was taken to Morris Community Hospital.

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OSF Defends Catholic Beliefs

Posted by wlpo on January 7, 2013

Like public versus private schools, the way things run at catholic hospitals are different than public ones.

Leaders with OSF St. Elizabeth Medical Center in Ottawa went over their “Ethical and Religious Directives” during an open forum Sunday.  Despite a lot of backlash on Facebook about the hospital’s catholic beliefs leading to a couple popular gynecologists leaving, only one person pressed OSF officials about not supporting tubal ligations, vasectomies or abortions.

St. Elizabeth Dr. Brian Rosborough explained that abortions weren’t done at the Ottawa hospital even before OSF took over.   He also says that any doctor can do the procedures or offer birth control if they’re not an OSF employee and have an office not owned by OSF.

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