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Archive for October 22nd, 2015

Hurdle cleared to keep emergency room open in Streator

Posted by wlpo on October 22, 2015

Streator may be losing its hospital but there’s a good chance a 24-hour emergency room will stick around.

The House this week passed a bill allowing OSF to continue operating a “Freestanding Emergency Center”, or ER out of St. Mary’s Hospital. State Representative Frank Mautino says the approval is “an encouraging step to help save jobs and thousands of local residents’ ability to access health care services in their hometown.” The Senate still needs to approve it followed by Governor Rauner’s signature.

At some point next year, OSF is taking over St. Mary’s and will turn it into an outpatient clinic until they open a new clinic in Streator.

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Tickets on sale for annual Signature Chef’s Auction

Posted by wlpo on October 22, 2015

Enjoy some local grub while also helping out the March of Dimes keep babies healthy.

Twenty restaurants from the Illinois Valley will showcase their goods Thursday, November 5th at the 15th Annual Signature Chefs Auction inside Celebrations 150. Besides all the food there will be silent and live auctions featuring the new feature of bidding by text message. Last year’s auction raised over $100,000.

You can order tickets to the Signature Chef’s Auction by clicking Signature Chefs Auction

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Illinois Valley unemployment rates continue to trend downward

Posted by wlpo on October 22, 2015

While there hasn’t been a huge new business opening in the Illinois Valley with hundreds of jobs, unemployment rates in the area continue to fall.

La Salle County’s September jobless rate is 6.1 percent, down a full percentage point from last September. In Bureau County, the latest unemployment rate is 5.4 percent, down more than a point from last year. Putnam County’s September jobless rate is an even 5 percent, a 1.5 percent drop from a year ago.

Illinois’ September unemployment rate is 5.1 percent while the U.S. jobless rate has fallen to 4.9 percent.

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Spring Valley teens accused of leading police on a Sunday chase

Posted by wlpo on October 22, 2015

Some alleged day drinking got a couple Spring Valley teens in big trouble.

Peru Police were called out Sunday afternoon about a suspicious car in the mall parking lot. They ended up chasing after the car driven by 18-year-old Andrew Kerr of Spring Valley. During the pursuit, Kerr’s passenger, 19-year-old Grant Hill of Spring Valley is accused of tossing beer out the car window. Once the car was stopped after blowing a tire, Hill is accused of trying to run away on foot.

Kerr ended up getting arrested for reckless driving and fleeing or attempting to elude, blowing stop signs and driving off the road. He and Hill were ticketed for underage drinking.

Both teens were given court dates.

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Phone surveys begin about the future of the Waltham School District

Posted by wlpo on October 22, 2015

If you live in the Waltham Elementary School District in Utica, chances are you’ll be called about a survey this week. If you hang up, you’ll miss a chance to have a say in the future of Waltham students.

According to the NewsTribune, the Waltham School Board has hired a survey company to call taxpayers and would be voters asking what direction the school district should go. Earlier this spring, many Waltham voters said no to raising taxes to expand Waltham North and closing Waltham South.

If you’re in Waltham and don’t get one of these survey calls, you can fill out an online survey that should be ready on the district website by the end of the week.

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