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Archive for April 2nd, 2013

Tentative contract reached between Ottawa and its firefighters

Posted by wlpo on April 2, 2013

A tentative contract agreement between the City of Ottawa and its firefighter’s union is expected to cut down on overtime.  A three-year deal with Firefighters Local 523 was placed on file Tuesday night by the city council.

Mayor Bob Eschbach says it includes 2.25%, 2.4% and 2.5% raises.  The second year includes a buy-back for some holidays.

Meanwhile, the council approved a three-year contract with AFSCME Local 2819 affecting their police dispatchers and public works employees.

That contract includes 53 cent an hour raises for the first two years of the contract followed by a 54 cent pay raise in year three.


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Barge terminal request delayed in Ottawa

Posted by wlpo on April 2, 2013

Calling it a “procedural matter”, Ottawa Mayor Bob Eschbach began what could have been a long and controversial city council meeting by explaining why they wouldn’t be talking about zoning changes for a barge terminal.

American River Transportation Company, a part of Archer Daniels Midland wants a conditional use so silica sand can be loaded onto barges at their terminal that would handle sand coming from a sand mine proposed for Route 71 east of Starved Rock State Park.

The plan commission gave a favorable recommendation for the request Monday night but since the city council hadn’t received approved hearing minutes they couldn’t take action Tuesday night according to Eschbach.  He thinks they could take action on the recommendation at their April 16 or May 7 meeting.

Farley Anders from the south side of Ottawa still took a few minutes during public comment to urge the mayor and council to consider the health concerns from non-occupational exposure to silica sand.

Eschbach responded by saying he appreciated the comments but the sand mine was out of the city’s control, but what they can control is how the sand is transported.

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GOP US Sen. Mark Kirk supporting gay marriage

Posted by wlpo on April 2, 2013

     CHICAGO (AP) – Republican U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk of Illinois says he supports same-sex marriage.

     Kirk said in a post on his blog Tuesday that same-sex couples should have the right to civil marriage. He says what matters in life is who you love and “government has no place in the middle.”

     Kirk previously voted to end the policy barring gays from openly serving in the military, known as “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” He’s a lead co-sponsor of a bill to ban employment discrimination based on sexual orientation, and has opposed a constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage.

     Kirk is Illinois’ ranking Republican lawmaker.

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Yard waste collection moves to Wednesday in Oglesby

Posted by wlpo on April 2, 2013

           It’s time to start getting your yard ready for another growing season.  In Oglesby, yard waste pickup resumes Wednesday. 

          Yard waste bags will be picked up on Wednesdays.  Each bag must have a sticker.  They cost $1.50 and are on sale at city hall, John’s Sales and Service and Eureka Savings Bank.

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Some cuts being considered at IVCC

Posted by wlpo on April 2, 2013

           Balancing the budget could mean a few jobs will go unfilled at Illinois Valley Community College. 

The new budget was looked over by the audit-finance committee Monday night.   College administrators plan to cut $900,000 by not filling open positions, cutting less-important positions and giving fewer athletic waivers. 

 Vice President for Business Services and Finance, Cheryl Roelfsema says they made the budget expecting to see students taking fewer credit hours and a decrease in state funding.

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Electronics drop off scheduled in Oglesby

Posted by wlpo on April 2, 2013

           Do you have an old TV or computer you want to throw out?  Electronics are no longer allowed in your garbage but you can take them to an E-waste drop-off later this month in Oglesby.

The drop off will be from 9a.m.-1p.m. Saturday, April 27 in the lot across from Lehigh Park.

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Local United Way chapter reaches fundraising goal

Posted by wlpo on April 2, 2013

Give yourself a pat on the back if you recently donated to the United Way of the Illinois Valley.  The charity announced Monday that they reached their 2013 fundraising campaign goal.

They raised enough money to reach their goal and then some.

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