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Archive for May 29th, 2013

Ottawa Teen Misses Out On National Spelling Bee Semifinals

Posted by wlpo on May 29, 2013

A new wrinkle to the national spelling bee this year ended up costing Ottawa’s Ram Koganti.

Ram spelled both of his words correctly Wednesday but missed one of his two vocabulary questions which kept him from being one of the 42 semifinalists.  During the second round, Koganti was asked to define perfidy. The Wallace Grade School grad thought it was a humorous imitation but  its actually defined as an instance of betrayal.

Koganti did correctly spell vivace and guariba.

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Federal charges after a meth investigation in Bureau County

Posted by wlpo on May 29, 2013

Methamphetamine is an illegal and addictive drug police don’t take lightly.  An investigation by federal and local detectives has left six people from Bureau County indicted for conspiracy to manufacture meth.

U.S. Attorney for the Central District of Illinois Jim Lewis announced the charges during a visit to Princeton Wednesday.   Accused are Shane Walters, Nicholas Hand Kyle Dye, Jenna Regal, Nikole Walters and Max Moritz of Princeton. Investigators believe the group had been conspiring for more than two years.

Everyone but Regal was scheduled to appear in federal court in Peoria Wednesday.  Regal was being hospitalized after having a baby.

If convicted, they could spend at least 10 years in prison.

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Emergency Declaration issued in Marseilles

Posted by wlpo on May 29, 2013

          Homeowners and contractors in Marseilles are busy repairing the houses that were damaged when the Illinois River swallowed much of the town during historic flooding last month. 

But the threat of flood waters remains, especially with damage to a damn restricting river flow.  It’s enough of a concern that Mayor Patti Smith issued an emergency declaration.

Chief Jim Hovious says they’re working with the Army Corps of Engineers and watching the river level.  He says Hesco sand barriers are being installed along the earthen dike.

          If the river comes within one-foot of topping the dike they’ll ask people to leave their homes.  Hovious says the risk of flooding is great because of the restricted flow and the rain predicted for upstream.

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Foam and mud 5K race coming to Ottawa area Saturday

Posted by wlpo on May 29, 2013

Trip wires, water obstacles and a death drop are included in a 5K competition that’s not your usual running race.  The obstacle course is the Chicago 5K Foam Fest and it is Saturday at Fox Valley Off Road north of Ottawa. 

          Cara Vincent is with Round House Racing, the company behind the contest.  She says the 5K is similar to the TV show Wipeout.  And you don’t have to be athletic.

You can compete with a group or on your own.  The race includes 14 obstacles.  It’s open to everyone 10 years and older.  It will be held rain or shine.

Registration is still open.  You can learn more about the race at and by listening to an interview at the AM 1220 WLPO news page.

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Water leak affecting homes and traffic in Peru

Posted by wlpo on May 29, 2013

A big water main leak will have a neighborhood in Peru without water.  The leak was discovered around 6:30am Wednesday on North Peoria Street.

A stretch of North Peoria will be closed from Sunset to Midtown Road so the leak can be repaired.  If you live on 26th or 27th Streets you’ll be able to get to your house.  Other traffic should use Route 251.

There will be a boil order once the water is back on.

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House approves cellphone ban, heads to gov’s desk

Posted by wlpo on May 29, 2013

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) – A proposal that would ban the use of cellphones while driving in Illinois is headed to Gov. Pat Quinn’s desk.

The House approved the bill 69-48 Tuesday, following a Senate vote late last week. Quinn’s spokeswoman says the Chicago Democrat will review the bill once he receives it. The proposal says motorists must use hands-free devices or speakerphone functions on their phones.

Police would be able to ticket drivers holding a cellphone except during emergencies. Dozens of Illinois communities, including Chicago, already ban talking on cellphones while driving.

Sponsor Democratic Sen. John Mulroe says the bill makes roads safer. Opponents, including Rep. Jack Franks, say there are many other ways of distracted driving.

House members first approved the plan in March.

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Kids Fly Free In Peru On Sunday

Posted by wlpo on May 29, 2013

Know any children who like to fly?  They can take to the sky for free this Sunday in Peru.

The Illinois Valley Flying Club, Experimental Aircraft Association and Civil Air Patrol are hosting a free “flight rally” from 9 until 2 at the Illinois Valley Regional Airport.  Children between 8 and 17 years old can fly with a volunteer pilot for free.

You need to bring a signed waiver Sunday to the airport before going up in a plane.  Find the waiver at

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Hot Tub Fundraising Campaign Underway At Illinois Valley YMCA

Posted by wlpo on May 29, 2013

Who doesn’t like to relax in a hot tub?  Y goers in Peru can’t right now.

The Illinois Valley YMCA is trying to raise 15 thousand dollars by June 15th to help pay for a new hot tub.  Letters were sent out this past week to members seeking donations.

State officials last year forced the Peru Y to close its hot tub because of a new pool drain requirement.  In January Y officials were granted a permit for a new hot tub.  They think one will cost 60 thousand dollars.

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Property Tax Bills Ready In La Salle County

Posted by wlpo on May 29, 2013

Not that you’re looking forward to it but property tax bills are ready to be mailed out in La Salle County.

Treasurer Don Lamps says his office will send out 66 thousand property tax bills tomorrow.  The first installment of property taxes is due by July 9th with the second installment due by September 9th.  You can pay in the treasurer’s office with a credit card, check or just have the taxes automatically withdrawn from your bank account.

There is a convenience fee for paying taxes with a credit card.

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