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News from the Illinois Valley

Archive for June, 2013

Ebert remembered and honored

Posted by wlpo on June 30, 2013

 Movie critic Roger Ebert has been honored more than two months after his death by the National Society of Newspaper Columnists. Ebert, who worked at the Chicago Sun-Times for more than 40 years, took first place for online columns or blogs on large websites in the NSNC’s annual column contest. The group held its annual conference yesterday in Hartford, Connecticut. Ebert died at age 70 in April after a long battle with cancer.

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Pension shortfall growing slower

Posted by wlpo on June 30, 2013

Governor Pat Quinn says Illinois’ massive pension shortfall will grow at a slower pace of $5 million a day during the next fiscal year. But the Democrat says lawmakers must work “around the clock” to address the crisis. Illinois has the nation’s worst state pension problem. Quinn has given lawmakers a deadline of July 9th.

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Town Festivals wrapping up

Posted by wlpo on June 30, 2013

Earlville turns 150 years old only once.  The party ends today with a community breakfast and church service. A big parade is planned for the afternoon.   It’s a full schedule for the last day of Oglesby Summer Fun Fest.  Craft show, bags tourney in the morning.  Water fights,  free sundaes, Dream Wave wrestling  and a Wine tasting through the afternoon. Jake and Elwood and The Big Fun Band on the Heartland Bank stage at 7. 50/50 drawing and at 9:30 – fireworks.

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Agreement at American Nickeloid

Posted by wlpo on June 30, 2013

It will be business as usual at American Nickeloid Monday. A source told WLPO AM + FM  news employees a tentative agreement was reached Thursday afternoon. Two thirds of the union workers approved the three year agreement in a vote Saturday morning. Workers will see wage increases each year and they will keep their pensions. Workers are members of the United Steelworkers local 4268.

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Oglesby Summer Fun Fest

Posted by wlpo on June 29, 2013

Oglesby Summer Fun Fest will have their Country Music Night tonite despite the afternoon of rain in the Illinois Valley.

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Power Lines Taken Down By Tree In Utica

Posted by wlpo on June 29, 2013

A downed tree caused issues in Utica.

A 911 call came in around 7:15 Saturday morning for a tree taking down power lines on Route 178 about a mile south of the Route 6 intersection.  Utica Fire immediately blocked off traffic on Route 178 near the Route 6 intersection.  Traffic was back open in a couple hours.

Ameren and AT&T also were called to the scene.

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Westclox Arsonist Doing Time Down South

Posted by wlpo on June 29, 2013

Almost seven years from today, Steven Gallacher of La Salle will be out of prison after serving time for starting the Westclox fire.

The 18-year old is serving his ten year prison term at Big Muddy Correctional Center in southern Illinois.  He’s scheduled to be released on parole June 25th, 2020.

Gallacher was convicted of aggravated arson in October and then sentenced to prison in December by Judge H. Chris Ryan.

A younger teen pled guilty to the arson and was given probation and community service.

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Ottawa Man Remains Jailed For Allegedly Killing His Child

Posted by wlpo on June 29, 2013

A hefty bond amount for a young Ottawa dad charged in his child’s death.

Raymond Fisher Jr. is being held in the La Salle County Jail on 750 thousand dollars bond.  He needs 75 thousand to be bailed out.

Fisher Jr. was arrested Thursday for involuntary manslaughter and aggravated battery to a child.  Investigators say his 6-month child was found unresponsive in Streator last August and died while at St. Francis Medical Center in Peoria.

An autopsy found the infant died of blunt force trauma to the head and internal bleeding.

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McGraw passes available through silent auction

Posted by wlpo on June 28, 2013

If you’re a fan of Tim McGraw seeing him in concert next Saturday will be fun, but what if you could meet with him backstage?  That is possible.

Merry Noonan, the woman behind Lou’s La Grotto’s “Concerts for a Cause” is auctioning off several backstage passes.  Proceeds from the silent auction will go towards the March of Dimes.

You can place a bid on the passes by calling Noonan at Lou’s LaGrotto in Peru at (815) 223-3083.  Noonan must personally take your bid and is normally at the restaurant between 11 and 5.  The deadline to place a bid is 5pm Tuesday, July 2.  

Tim McGraw performs Saturday, July 6 at the Illinois Valley Regional Airport in Peru.  General admission tickets are still available.

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Chicago teens arrested for felony drug charges in Ottawa

Posted by wlpo on June 28, 2013

          You can’t buy cigarettes until you’re 18 years old, but two 17 year old boys in Ottawa are accused of having heroin and cocaine.

          Officers with TRIDENT arrested Rashad Barksdale and Brandon McLaurin of Chicago after searching an apartment on Route 6 Wednesday.

          Barksdale is accused of having heroin; McLaurin is accused of having cocaine.  Police say both of the teens lied about their names when confronted. 

          The teens were being held in the La Salle County Jail with their bonds each at $100,000.

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