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Archive for January 21st, 2016

Illinois American Water Looking to Raise Rates for the First Time Since 2012.

Posted by wlpo on January 21, 2016

There will be a noticeable increase in your water bill if you live in Streator and Illinois American Water gets their way.

The company filed an application with the Illinois Commerce Commission to adjust rates for water and sewer service starting in January of 2017. The investor-owned utility argues they have spent nearly $350 million in infrastructure improvements over more than 3 years, but they have not raised rates since 2012.

According to Illinois American Water, you can expect pay about $7.50 more per month, an increase of almost 20%.

Rates will not increase before next year because the ICC must conduct their 11-month review of the proposal which will include opportunities for public comment.

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Crash near Mendota involves a tow truck

Posted by wlpo on January 21, 2016

Being a tow truck driver means you’ve picked a dangerous profession.

Just after 9:30 Wednesday morning, deputies say Andrew Johnson of Cornell was southbound on Interstate 39 near Mendota trying to pass a semi. When he was making the pass, he clipped a tow truck that was parked on the inside shoulder trying to pull a car out from a prior crash. Luckily the tow truck driver, Wess Whittaker of Earlville was okay.

Johnson wasn’t hurt as well and also wasn’t ticketed.

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Search continues for driver that intentionally rammed La Salle County squad car

Posted by wlpo on January 21, 2016

If you’ve been following the story about a La Salle County deputy getting rammed in his squad car, he’s back to work but the suspect is still at large.

La Salle County Sheriff Tom Templeton says no one is in custody yet for Tuesday’s incident in Ottawa. A deputy was trying to stop a driver on Route west of Ottawa for speeding. The driver though led the deputy on a chase into north Ottawa before the suspect allegedly turned around and intentionally rammed the deputy. The squad car was so badly damaged that the deputy couldn’t keep up the pursuit.

Templeton says his investigators along with state police crime scene technicians are looking over the suspect’s car which was abandoned in Earlville. The car is a Mitsubishi Galant.

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State crews busy patching potholes

Posted by wlpo on January 21, 2016

The snow plows haven’t been needed much this winter but when they’re out, potholes usually follow.

With the interstates clear of snow and ice, state crews from IDOT are out today on Route 89 and Route 92 fixing potholes. Watch out for workers between Spring Valley and La Moille and La Moille to Ohio.

Crews also plan to patch potholes on Interstate 39 from Troy Grove to just past Mendota.

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Exit ramp crash in Mendota injures Rockford driver

Posted by wlpo on January 21, 2016

Among the many weather related crashes Wednesday, one near Mendota did involve a driver hospitalized.

Deputies got called just after 8:30 Wednesday morning to a crash on southbound Interstate 39 near the Mendota exit. Amanda Yandura of Mendota lost control on an exit ramp. She spun around and was hit by Ryan Stephenson of Rockford.

Yandura was treated at the scene but Stephenson was taken to St. Paul Medical Center in Mendota.

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Wild police chase starts in La Salle and ends near Peru

Posted by wlpo on January 21, 2016

There was a good ole fashioned police chase Wednesday night in the Illinois Valley.

La Salle Police tried pulling over Ernest Gaston of Chicago on northbound Interstate 39 just before 9:30. Officers say Gaston sped away in his Nissan Altima, getting up to 120 miles per hour. When turning around near Troy Grove, Gaston is accused of throwing stuff out his window.

As Gaston headed back south on I-39, he ran over some “stop sticks” that damaged a passenger side tire. Officers say Gaston kept driving with the damaged tire, getting up to 80 miles an hour.

Because of the damaged tire, Gaston pulled over finally on Interstate 80 near Peru. He was arrested for aggravated fleeing and eluding police, speeding and driving without a valid license. Gaston was also wanted in Grundy County for skipping a court date on a separate charge of fleeing police.

As for the stuff he threw out his window, officers say they found 300 hydrocodone tablets. Pending lab tests, Gaston could be looking at more charges.

For now he was taken to the La Salle County Jail.

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