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Archive for May, 2014

Brush burns north of Dee Bennett Road

Posted by wlpo on May 30, 2014

The I and M Canal was one fire, sort of. Brush growing in the canal bed west of the Buffalo Rock entrance caught fire Thursday afternoon. There isn’t water in that part of the canal.

Utica and Wallace firefighters were able to put it out. Smoke could be seen from several miles away.  Utica Fire Chief Ben Brown says it may have been sparked by a passing train or combustion from decomposing vegetation.

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La Salle Canal Boat undergoes inspection

Posted by wlpo on May 29, 2014

On a warm and sunny June day in 2008, a large crane lowered the canal boat into the Illinois and Michigan Canal in La Salle. Nearly six years later, large cranes raised the boat out of the water for an inspection.

It happened Thursday morning. Ana Koval is the President of the Canal Corridor Association. She says the Coast Guard inspection is required every five or six years. Officials with the Coast Guard looked over the ship’s hull. Koval says a part needed to be straightened at a nearby wielding shop before the boat was returned to the water.

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Broken cable affecting phone service in Peru

Posted by wlpo on May 29, 2014

Are you having a hard time reaching a phone number in Peru? An unknown number of AT&T customers on the east side of Peru are without landline phone service after city employees hit a phone cable.

Crews were working on a water main leak at Seventh and Walnut Streets Thursday morning when they hit an unmarked phone cable.

AT&T knows about it. It’s unclear when it will be repaired.

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Suburban driver hurt in crash near Utica

Posted by wlpo on May 29, 2014

Repairs are needed along Interstate 80 near Utica after an electric car left the road.

Amber Egan of Evergreen Park was eastbound on I-80 Wednesday afternoon when troopers say she drove into the median for an unknown reason. Egan eventually hit and damaged several feet of median cable and supports before finally coming to a stop.

She was taken to Illinois Valley Community Hospital. Egan wasn’t ticketed.

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Local investors save Mendota company and its employees

Posted by wlpo on May 29, 2014

A struggling Mendota construction company has a new owner. Illinois Valley Millworks of Mendota has been bought by Starved

Rock Wood Products, a newly formed subsidiary of CL Enterprises LLC, a private equity and holdings company.
CL Enterprises announced the deal Wednesday. Illinois Valley Millworks had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy last summer. The company says IVM’s 18 employees and founder, Keith Miller, will continue as employees of Starved Rock Wood Products.

CL Enterprises is owned by Inga Carus and Peter Limberger. They say they want to grow and expand the business.

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Budget on the agenda for Illinois lawmakers

Posted by wlpo on May 29, 2014

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) – The Illinois Senate is expected to advance a 2015 budget as the Legislature moves closer to adjourning its spring session.

Lawmakers return to the Capitol Thursday with the $37.5 billion budget and several other issues on their agenda. But the biggest issue remains the 2015 budget, which passed the House on Tuesday.

It keeps spending flat for schools and most agencies next year, but could lead to layoffs, facility closures and a postelection extension of Illinois’ temporary income tax increase.

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Fire damages a Deer Park house

Posted by wlpo on May 29, 2014

Flames were showing through the roof of a Deer Park Township home before anyone realized it was burning.  Firefighters from Utica and surrounding departments went to the fire around 5pm Wednesday.

Utica Fire Chief Ben Brown says the fire heavily damaged the rear of the home.  The two people that live there were not home when it started.  Brown says they were able to stay with family.

Brown says the cause has not been determined and the State Fire Marshall would be investigating.

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School Closing for Thursday

Posted by wlpo on May 28, 2014

So close to the finish line, but not close enough.

Due to a water main break in the village Wednesday, Grand Ridge Grade School will not be in session Thursday.

Superintendent Dave Mathis says school will be in session Friday.

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Stolen truck found during Streator robbery investigation

Posted by wlpo on May 28, 2014

A white pickup truck stolen from a dealership in Streator has been found but the men accused of taking it have not. Streator Police continue to look for two men accused of robbing at knife point the Tobacco Store on North Bloomington Street Tuesday afternoon.

Police say the men left the store and headed south to Star Ford Lincoln Mercury where they took the truck.

The men are described as white and about 30-years-old. One of them has a cross tattoo on his forearm. If you know anything about the robbery or the men, call the Streator Police.

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Public use of LPHS sports complex to begin Saturday

Posted by wlpo on May 28, 2014

You’ll be able to run as hard as you like and with few distractions at the new LP High School Sports Complex. Starting Saturday the track and tennis courts will be open to everyone from 6am until 8pm, seven days a week.

LP Superintendent Steve Wrobleski says it’s important for school officials to make sure you have access to what they think is a premier athletics complex.

The complex opened for student use this spring. Grass is still coming in on the soccer field so they ask you not use it. The restrooms will also be closed.  The only times you won’t be able to use the track and courts are when school teams are using them or there’s some other scheduled event.  You’ll find the sports complex on Chartres Street north of the Hygienic Institute.  

Hear more from Wrobleski by listening to an interview that’s available at the WLPO AM and FM news page.

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