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Archive for July 23rd, 2013

Final Offers Made In Ottawa High School Negotiations

Posted by wlpo on July 23, 2013

The Ottawa High School Board has responded to the teacher’s unions latest offer by saying the district doesn’t have the money teachers are asking for.

So-called “Impasse Final Offers” by the board and teachers have been released by the Illinois Educational Labor Relations Board.  Teachers want their insurance contributions to stay at 10 percent during a new three-year contract while the board wants them to pay 13 percent next year and 14 percent the last year of the contract.  Ottawa teachers want their post-retirement insurance benefits to stay the same while the board wants dependents coverage dropped next year and spouses cut out in year three of the contract.

Both sides have agreed to no salary increases for the past school year but teachers want 1.9% base salary increases and step-increases the final two years of the contract.  They argue it’ll still be saving the district money with several planned retirees next school year.

The school board is proposing a 713 dollar stipend for the last two years of the contract which amounts to a 2 percent base salary increase.  They don’t want to give step increases though arguing teachers already have a built in 5 percent step increase.

School board officials say the sides remain about 1.1 million dollars apart.  When they started negotiating last year, they were 2.9 million dollars apart from a new contract.

If you want to see contract proposals, click

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Meet and greet McGraw passes raise money for the March of Dimes

Posted by wlpo on July 23, 2013

Fans of Tim McGraw who bought special meet and greet passes for his concert in Peru helped raise $5,100 for the March of Dimes.  A $5,000 match by The Miller Group Charitable Trust brought the total to $10,100.

The “Concert for a Cause” on July 6 saw a crowd smaller than anticipated and not large enough to raise a donation from the ticket sales alone according to promoter Merry Noonan. Though attendance was less than hoped for, she says the concert went smoothly.

The next “Concert for a Cause” features Brantley Gilbert and Craig Campbell.  Again you have a chance to make a bid on special meet and greet passes.  To do this, call Noonan at Lou’s La Grotto’s with a bid.

Peru Little League will be the benefactor.  Learn more about it by visiting

Miller Group Media includes WLPO AM and FM, 96.5, Wolf and 99.3 WAJK, the NewsTribune and Agrinews.

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La Salle Alderman Named New IVCC Women’s Hoops Coach

Posted by wlpo on July 23, 2013

A familiar face is taking over as coach of the Illinois Valley Community College Lady Eagles basketball team.

According to the IVCC athletics Facebook page, Tom Ptak is the new head coach, replacing Pat Cinotte.  Ptak has most recently been an assistant coach with the St. Bede boy’s basketball team.  He’s also coached on the AAU circuit.

Ptak is a two-term La Salle alderman.

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Update On Injured L-P Teacher

Posted by wlpo on July 23, 2013

A math teacher at L-P High School remains in critical condition after being hit by a train.

25-year old Matthew Makeever is being treated at St. Francis Medical Center in Peoria.  He was flown there Saturday morning after police found him lying on the ground just north of railroad tracks in the 100 block of 1st Street in La Salle.

Makeever was in the midst of teaching summer school at L-P and was also providing piano for Stage 212’s production of “Grease”.

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Backstage Brantley Gilbert Passes Up For Bid

Posted by wlpo on July 23, 2013

Want to hang out with Brantley Gilbert before his show in Peru?  Just place a bid.

“Concerts for a Cause” promoter Merry Noonan is accepting bids until next Wednesday for a limited amount of meet and greet passes to go backstage with Gilbert.  You must make your private bid to Noonan by calling Lou’s La Grotto.

Tickets for the August 3rd Brantley Gilbert and Craig Campbell show are 43 dollars and are on sale at Lou’s La Grotto and Wyanet Carpet.  Proceeds will benefit the Peru Little League.

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Big Month For Home Sales In La Salle County

Posted by wlpo on July 23, 2013

The latest housing market report for the Illinois Valley is a mixed one.

The number of homes sold in June in La Salle and Bureau Counties is up from a month ago but down in Putnam County.  113 homes were sold last month in La Salle County, 30 more than the month before.  Twenty-eight homes were sold last month in Bureau County, up from 24 the month before.  Only three homes were sold last month in Putnam County compared to seven in May.

Of all the homes sold last month in the area, the median sale price in La Salle County was 86 thousand dollars.  Bureau County’s median home price was 95 thousand dollars while Putnam County’s was 87 thousand dollars.

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Spring Valley Mayor Calls For More Pride

Posted by wlpo on July 23, 2013

Having pride in your community helps, according to Spring Valley’s relatively new mayor.

The Newstribune reports that Mayor Walt Marini wants to fufill a campaign promise to restore pride in Spring Valley.  Marini brought it up during the city council meeting last night, asking the aldermen and city officials to help with small improvements.

Marini thinks they should collect trash more often downtown to take care of the overflowing trash cans.  He also wants to have bent or hard to read street signs replaced.

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Water Shutdown In Granville

Posted by wlpo on July 23, 2013

It’s not often a whole town is without water but that’s the case today in Granville.

A planned village-wide water shutdown started around 8 Tuesday morning.  Crews hope to have the water back on by 1 in the afternoon.  When the water comes back on there will be a boil order until further notice.

The water’s being turned off to fix a water main break.

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