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Archive for December 20th, 2015

Would “piggy bank” ends state’s woes?

Posted by wlpo on December 20, 2015

Cash-strapped Illinois has at least $4 billion in the bank.  The money is sits in special funds in the state budget created for specific purposes. But an Associated Press analysis shows it’s in 531 accounts that could be ripe for picking as a fix to the budget mess.

No one has suggested such “sweeps” while Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner and the Democratic-controlled Legislature continue their stalemate over a budget plan that should have taken effect July 1.

A Rauner spokeswoman would not comment on the idea. House Majority Leader and Chicago Democrat Barbara Flynn Currie says she’s OK with sweeps if they’re done judiciously and without harming the programs funded.

According to the Legislature’s budget office, governors and lawmakers have swept $3.4 billion since 2003.

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Ottawa home invaded for second time

Posted by wlpo on December 20, 2015

   An Ottawa home where a woman was stabbed 2 ½ weeks ago is invaded again Saturday night. The west side home is at 2912 East 15th, known as Terra Cotta road. A deputy’s report says 5 males forcibly entered last night about 11:45, displayed weapons including a handgun and took some items. No one was hurt. The sheriff’s office says there is no further information at this time.

    The same house, located just north of Route 6, is where a female was stabbed mid-morning December 2. Paris Budach, Hannah Rhanor and Vernon Andrews were arrested for mob action. The victim and 1 suspect got treatment for injuries.

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Fire damages car and garage

Posted by wlpo on December 20, 2015

Firemen are ready for action anytime. While you were sleeping in Sunday morning, Ottawa firemen responded to a car fire at 514 West Lafayette.  Captain Brian Dose said when they arrived at 7:30am,  fire was burning a Chevy Monte Carlo under an aluminum car port and on the gable end of the garage. Firemen extinguished all the flames in about 15 minutes.

Dose said there were no injuries, but a state fire marshall came to the scene. At this time, the cause is undetermined. The damage to the car was three hundred dollars and $2600 to the garage.

The heat melted a neighbor’s fence and the driver’s side of the neighbor’s 2002 chevy cavalier.

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Implement towing truck sideswipes semi

Posted by wlpo on December 20, 2015

Someone towing an extra wide farm implement heavily damaged a passing vehicle Saturday night and then kept going. 65-year old Stephen Sampson of Earlville told a deputy that his semi was southbound at Waltham Church, 5 miles north of Love’s,  when he saw an approaching pick-up truck towing a cultivator. The large implement extended into the south lane and Sampson said he could not avoid striking it. There were no injuries.

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Teens not prepared for Jr. College?

Posted by wlpo on December 20, 2015

   New data shows about half of Illinois high school graduates going on to the state’s community colleges need remediation in at least 1 subject. That data was released this past week by the Illinois State Board of Education. It shows 48.7 percent of graduates who enrolled in the community college system needed remedial instruction to prepare them for entry-level college coursework.

The highest remediation rate was in math, with about 41 percent needing additional preparation in the subject. For the first time, that information is being reported with Illinois Report Card data.

State Superintendent of Education Tony Smith says that information, along with the test known as the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, will help educators address the college readiness of their students.

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Pontiac man still missing

Posted by wlpo on December 20, 2015

   An all day search Sunday by volunteers in and out of Pontiac has not found an 80-year old resident. Pontiac police said Louis Lowery disappeared after 8pm Friday from his north side home near the high school. Police with volunteers searched outer buildings in and out of Pontiac Sunday. Authorities said a final search near Lowery’s home would be performed in the early afternoon.

    Lowery is African-American, 5′ 7”, 160 lbs, thin build, brown eyes, bald head. Police say he has no cell phone, does not drive and may be suffering from dementia. Lowery is believed to have left his house on foot. If you see someone matching this description…even possibly talk with them, you’re asked to call Pontiac police at 815 844 0911.

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