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Quad City Daily News

Kennedy For Governor?

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House Speaker Michael Madigan says Chris Kennedy, the son of the late Robert F. Kennedy, would be an "excellent candidate" for the office of Illinois Governor after Kennedy spoke to the Illinois delegation at the Democratic National Convention. Tuesday night at the convention, Kennedy attacked Gov. Bruce Rauner, blaming Rauner for the lack of a complete budget. He was also critical of Rauner's efforts to curb the power of unions. However, Kennedy is not addressing speculation that he's interested in the state's top office.

 

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Break the Rules Day on August 17

The Quad Cities Chamber is declaring August 17, 2016 as Break the Rules Day. 

It's a day to celebrate the people, businesses, and organizations throughout the Quad Cities region that are breaking the rules to positively impact their business and the community.

 

Mike Walsh, expert on emerging technologies, consumer behavior and fast growth markets is the keynote speaker of the Quad Cities Chamber Annual Meeting, and he asserts that the companies that thrive in the near future will be the ones that not only embrace change, but are the first to break the rules. 

Over 1,200 members of the business community will come together as Walsh brings the future to life and advises on how to design businesses for the 21st century and thrive in this era of disruptive technological change.  

 

Limited space still available:
REGISTER TODAY! 

 

WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 17
Doors open at 11:00 a.m.
Lunch & Program 11:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. 

 

iWireless Center

1201 River Drive

Moline, IL 

 

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Churches United Receives Grant

 

Churches United of the Quad City Area is pleased to announce that The Doris & Victor Day Foundation has awarded us a $20,000.00 grant, in support of social services.  This much appreciated funding will directly support our Hunger and Shelter ministries.  Winnie’s Place Emergency Shelter celebrates its 10th anniversary this year as a shelter for women (with or without children) who are homeless and/or victims of domestic violence in the Quad City Area.  Our 25 food pantries and 3 hot meal sites are located throughout the Quad City Area, and freely serve any who are in need of food.  We are very thankful to the Doris & Victor Day Foundation for its continued support of Churches United’s social service ministries, and for its sustained care and concern for this community. 

 

Churches United has a 55-year history of reaching out to our community.  Its 136 member churches represent 50,000 people from the Quad City Area.  For information about services offered, or ways to support Churches United, call 563-332-5002, or visit our website at www.CUQCA.org.

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Credit Union Helps QC Community

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BETTENDORF, IOWA – In 2015, The Ascentra Credit Union Foundation provided over $79,500 in crucial funding for 39 local organizations including a $50,000 co-sponsorship of a Habitat for Humanity House in Davenport and a four-year commitment to Junior Achievement of the Heartland that amounts to $50,000. 

 

It was also the year the foundation successfully established the Paul Lensmeyer Golf Outing as its annual fundraising event raising over $18,000 to help further the mission of making a positive impact in the communities served by Ascentra Credit Union.  This year’s annual Paul Lensmeyer Golf Outing will take place on Monday, Sept. 26th at the Arsenal Island Golf Club in Rock Island, Ill.  

 

“We have heard terrific feedback from those who participated last year, letting us know how much they enjoyed all the activities we coordinated throughout the historic and scenic course at Arsenal Island,” Ascentra President and CEO Dale Owen said. “Knowing that we are also helping programs for our military families by golfing at the Rock Island Arsenal  made it an easy decision to return this September.”

The Sept. 26th event begins at noon and will include a box lunch, golf, cart, dinner and awards reception following the golf outing.  Registration is now open and can be accessed through a link on the foundation website atwww.ascentra.org/foundation.  People can register to golf and special sponsorship opportunities are still available for companies and organizations. 

 

The 2016 Paul Lensmeyer Golf Outing is made possible by the support of Allied Solutions and its family of companies, Burns-Fazzi, Brock and Associates, and Securian.  For more information about the golf outing please contact Ascentra Credit Union Event Coordinator Megan Guldenpfennig at 563-459-6909 or emailmarketing@ascentra.org

 

About The Ascentra Credit Union Foundation:        

Established in 2013, to honor the memory of Ascentra Credit Union President & CEO Paul Lensmeyer and to meet the charitable and educational objectives of the Board of Directors of the credit union, the mission of the Ascentra Credit Union Foundation is to improve the quality of life for the membership of Ascentra Credit Union and further the philanthropic outreach in the communities the credit union serves. The focus of the foundation is on funding work to enhance youth development, expand credit education opportunities, foster community development, support cultural activities, and invest in ways to enhance the financial viability of the underserved.  More information can be found atwww.ascentra.org/foundation .

 

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Illinois Looking for Better Deal in Coal Cleanup?

 Peabody Energy, the largest coal producer in the U.S., reached a deal this week with several states on plans to cover the costs of mine cleanups. Illinois is not among them and environmentalists said that could be a good sign. 

The company is filing for bankruptcy and has been allowed to self-bond - essentially a promise to pay for coal site cleanup without actually setting aside the cash. Peabody operates several coal mines in Illinois and according to the state's attorney general, the energy company could be on the hook for $92 million to reclaim the sites if they're shut down.

That money should not have to come from Illinois taxpayers, said Howard Learner with the Environmental Law and Policy Center. 

"The state of Illinois has not filed a stipulation with Peabody," Lerner said. "And we're pleased that Governor Rauner and the Illinois Attorney General are looking harder at this one, and reassessing what's the fair balance here in light of Peabody's legal responsibilities."

Learner said that the deal Peabody reached with Indiana could force the state's taxpayers to foot about 80 percent of the bill to clean up the company's coal sites. So far, Illinois has not made a deal with Peabody.

In July, a federal bankruptcy judge allowed groups, including the Environmental Law and Policy Center, to weigh in on the court proceedings. Learner called it a breakthrough decision that could help keep Peabody accountable.

"What that really means," Learner said, "is the court's attention is now focused on Peabody living up to its legal responsibility to fully fund the mine reclamation and hear the arguments about why those costs should not be shifted onto the public."

The groups are expected to head back to court in August. St. Louis-based Peabody Energy filed for bankruptcy in April. In a statement Tuesday, the company's president said Peabody is committed to its reclamation obligations.

To read more information, visit elpc.org.

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Experts: Unimproved Child Poverty Rates Ignored by Presidential Candidates

The percentage of children living in poverty has not improved much since the Great Recession. In Iowa, the poverty rate for children reached 17 percent in the years between 2010 to 2014, the most recent year data was collected.

According to data from the Annie E. Casey Foundation, rates have yet to return to pre-recession levels of 14 percent. Julia Isaacs, a senior fellow at the Urban Institute, said this is unusual.

"It's typical for the poverty rate to remain high a year or two after a recession," Isaacs said. "But to have it remain high three or four years after a recession is less typical."

The issue has been virtually ignored during the presidential campaign season so far, according to the bipartisan children's advocacy organization First Focus.
Bruce Lesley, president of First Focus, said that in the first 10 presidential debates, only 1 of 501 questions asked of the Republican and Democratic candidates were specific to children.

"Even in the last campaign," Lesley said, "both Romney and Obama issued statements during the end, talking about things they would do to address it."

He said It's still not too late to introduce the issue during the 2016 presidential race.

"If they would engage in the conversation I think they would find a very receptive audience among the public," Lesley said. "But because kids don't vote, they don't have PACs, they're not donating to campaigns, they're not on top of mind, and so it's a huge problem that we face."

The federal poverty level is defined as a family of four living on an income of about $1,000 or less per month.

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Increasing Osprey Population Inspiring Iowans to Work for Clean Water

The osprey, a fish-eating bird of prey, was once common in Iowa, but populations dwindled with the arrival of European settlers. 

Close to a half-dozen 40-day-old osprey chicks will be introduced at sites in Clear Lake and Swan Lake this week. 

They were collected from nests in northern Minnesota where the population is much more established. 

Pat Schlarbaum, a wildlife diversity technician for the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, says because the birds live near water, Iowans will want to continue with cleanup efforts.

"These birds inspire people," he states. "They're water-loving creatures. We're hoping that they can guide us to do more, guide us to do better, as people realize that having the ospreys are a welcome addition to our summer activities around the lakes and ponds and rivers."

DNR experts will continue looking after the young birds in their new homes until they're able to fly on their own in a couple of weeks.

Schlarbaum says hearing and seeing these raptors dive-bomb for a meal is something worth seeking out.

"The whole phenomena of watching this bird just see a fish near the surface and just go down and take it, is nothing short of remarkable," he points out. "It's almost hard to do the math, that a four-pound bird could carry off a two-pound fish."

There have been 24 attempts at establishing osprey nests throughout the state, with a few dozen birds now spending the summer months in Iowa before migrating to South America for the winter and later returning. 

As far as how many of the birds could one day live in the state, Schlarbaum says the sky's the limit.

"As long as our waters improve, as long as there's fish," he states. "We were uncertain about how many bald eagles we'd have in Iowa, and now we're at more than 400 nesting pairs of eagles, and that population's still growing."

There's even an online Osprey Cam with live video of a nest located on the Wells Fargo campus in West Des Moines.
 

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Kennedy draws high marks from Madigan

House Speaker Michael Madigan says Chris Kennedy, the son of the late Robert F. Kennedy, would be an "excellent candidate" after Kennedy spoke to the Illinois delegation at the Democratic National Convention. Tuesday night at the convention, Kennedy attacked Gov. Bruce Rauner, blaming Rauner for the lack of a complete budget. He was also critical of Rauner's efforts to curb the power of unions. However, Kennedy is not addressing speculation that he's interested in the state's top office.

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Community Block Party at 12th and 12th

Rock Island, Ill. – Church of Peace and Heart of Hope Ministries are hosting a Community Block Party on Saturday, August 6 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the corner of 12th Street and 12th Avenue in Rock Island, Illinois.  The two churches share this intersection.

The public is invited to enjoy food, fun, and fellowship together!  Games are planned for the kids and bingo for the adults.  Enjoy music by a DJ, and there will be a prayer station to reflect together.  Chris Britton, Director of the Rock Island Christian Friendliness Youth Hope Center, and some of his poetry team will share some of their powerful poetry expressions.

The Church of Peace United Church of Christ has been located in Rock Island since 1895.  Founded by German immigrants, the church was originally called Deutsche Evangelicalische Friedens Gemeinde or German Evangelical Peace Church.  In 1912, the congregation built the church at its current location on 12th Street and 12th Avenue.  The church is involved in outreach efforts through its Book Nook, Meal Program site, new Peacepals literacy tutoring program, ESL Classes, Immigrant Cancer Education, Diapers for Baby Jesus, and Saturday food pantry. www.ChurchofPeaceUCC.org

Heart of Hope Ministries is a non-denominational fellowship of believers that started in 2009.  Heart of Hope leads Bible studies for women at the Rock Island County Jail, serves meals at the Christian Care Men’s Rescue Mission, and runs a Food Pantry and Clothing Ministry. www.heartofhopeqc.org

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IL Sanders Delegate Hopes for Party Unity at DNC

Some Illinois delegates called for unity at the Democratic National Convention, even after leaked emails allegedly revealed an effort by party insiders to sway voters away from Sen. Bernie Sanders.

The controversy over the emails resulted in Democratic Party chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz stepping down. Illinois delegates largely agreed that this was the right move, but some said the focus should now be on defeating Republican Donald Trump in November. 

Robert Peters, a Sanders delegate from Chicago, said that even though his candidate didn't win the nomination, the senator's ideas have had a positive effect on presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.

"What Bernie's really done is, after hopefully Clinton gets elected, we can hold her accountable," Peters said. "We can combat this right-wing narrative and we can really shape the Democratic Party; and have an actual long-term vision that includes candidate development and good issue work."

Illinois has 196 delegates at the DNC in Philadelphia, with 113 backing Clinton and 83 pledged to Sanders. Clinton beat Sanders in the Illinois primary by just two percentage points.

According to Peters, the Sanders' campaign forced Clinton to take up issues she might have otherwise avoided or downplayed. Among these issues, she said, is Clinton's opposition to the Trans-Pacific Partnership - a commercial trade agreement disliked by most Democrats. Peters thinks it should include more worker protections.

"We make sure that labor, no matter where they are - whether they're in China at Walmart or they're in Chicago at a 7-Eleven - they have good rights," she said, "a living wage, benefits, unionization."

Sanders tried unsuccessfully to get opposition to the TPP into the official Democratic Party platform. However, a top Clinton adviser told Politico that if elected, Secretary Clinton would instead focus on new trade initiatives that were, "clear job creators."

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Trump to Appear in Davenport on Thursday


DAVENPORT, IA. Republican Presidential nominee  Donald Trump will be in Davenport, Thursday July 28 at the Adler Theatre.  The rally begins at 4 pm and doors open at 1 pm.  For tickets go to: https://www.donaldjtrump.com/schedule .

 

This is Mr. Trump’s first visit to Iowa after the Republican National Convention and since the Iowa caucus.

The event is free and open to the public.

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Genesis First To Use New Stent

DAVENPORT, Iowa – July 18, 2016 – Dr. Nicolas Shammas and a catheterization team at Genesis Medical Center, East Rusholme Street inserted a new vein stent for the first time in the United States on Thursday, July 14.

Before Thursday at Genesis Medical Center, East Rusholme Street, Shammas said he would have used a stent designed for heart procedures and adapted it for use to open blood flow in the leg vein. Instead he became the first cardiologist in the U.S. to use the Bard Venovo venous stent specifically designed for leg veins.

Shammas was the third cardiologist in the world to use the Venova scaffolding in a clinical trial.

Julie Huffer, 43, of Bettendorf was the first patient.

She explained that she woke up on a morning last July with a left ankle "that looked like it had a doughnut around it.''

Several conditions were ruled out before Julie had an appointment with Dr. Shammas of Cardiovascular Medicine PC.  He told Julie he was almost certain he knew what the problem was. He diagnosed compression of a vein in her left leg and reduced blood flow, causing the pain and swelling.

Following the minimally invasive procedure on Thursday, Shammas said Julie should notice improvement in her symptoms.

"It was 95 percent restricted,'' Julie said of the vein’s blood flow a few hours after the procedure. "It already feels different to me. I was willing to do anything to get rid of the pain and swelling.  Dr. Shammas said I would be a good candidate for this

-- MORE --

2 – Genesis Team First In U.S. To Use New Stent

study and I wanted to do it. Studies like this are important for future patients.”

The past year has been a busy one for Julie. She and her husband, Frank, were married in October and have three children contributing to a hectic life. Because of the pain and swelling, Julie said she was sometimes challenged by routine day-to-day activities.

“I'm looking forward to getting back to feeling like myself again" said Julie.  

By Friday when she was discharged after one night from the hospital, Julie reported that her leg was feeling much better.

Shammas said the Venovo stent is the first designed specifically for opening leg veins. He said a range of sizes is available and the stent is flexible and should adhere well to leg veins.

"What we have been doing, using heart stents for leg veins, was not ideal. The procedure went perfectly,'' Shammas said.  "We're hopeful Julie will have a lot of relief from the swelling and pain.''

Reduced flow in leg veins can also cause ulcers and potentially dangerous clotting. Shammas said the condition is common.

Shammas has spent 25 years participating in research.  Innovation is a culture within Cardiovascular Medicine PC and the Genesis Heart Institute.  Genesis patients have access to a number of clinical trials and new techniques close to home.

Dr. Shammas has published more than 200 manuscripts, abstracts and book chapters and presented at national and international meetings including the Middle East, Europe, and China. He has served as a reviewer and on the editorial board of several peer-reviewed journals. He has participated in more than 125 multi-center clinical trials.

Use of the Venovo stent is part of a research study.  Outcomes from use of the device are unproven and the device is not yet approved for general use in the United States. Some patients may not meet guidelines for use of the stent.  It is unknown whether patients will experience different or improved results compared to the use of devices and procedures now approved.Please note that this is a research study, and we don't entirely know if this will have a better outcome for the patient compared to current methods. Regardless of what we learn from this study, the results will benefit our patients in the future.

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Speed Awareness Day Today

 

East Moline, IL – During Illinois Speed Awareness Day this July 27th, Illinois State Police is taking a proactive approach to promote safety for motorists, pedestrians, and cyclists through both education and enforcement. In Illinois during 2014, speed was the reason for 32.4% of all traffic fatalities. That’s 348 deaths for the year, or one life every 25 hours. These lives can be easily saved by being aware of our speed and understanding how speeding impacts a crash.

 

On Interstates speeding can have the following consequences:

 

·       The probability of death, disfigurement, or debilitating injury grows with higher speed at impact. Such consequences double for every 10 MPH over 50 MPH.

·       When a vehicle crashes it undergoes a rapid change in speed. However the occupants keep moving at the vehicle’s previous speed until they are stopped, either by hitting an object or by being restrained by a safety belt or airbag.

·       The effectiveness of restraint devices like airbags, safety belts, crumple zones, and side beams decline as impact speed increases.

·       37.4% of the speed-related crashes result in injuries.

·       Speeding extends the distance required to stop a vehicle in emergency situations.

·       Crash severity increases with the speed of the vehicle at impact.

·       Speeding reduces a driver’s ability to navigate safely around curves or objects in the roadway.

·       Speeding can lower gas mileage by 33% at highway speeds.

 

Let’s all do our part by taking a proactive approach to prevent fatalities and reduce injuries on the roadways by being aware of our speed and obeying the speed limit signs ALL the time.  If you would like more information about Illinois Speed Awareness Day, please visit www.illinoisspeedawarenessday.org.

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Quad City Pops to Perform Eagles Hits

Quad City Bank & Trust Riverfront Pops is Coming - Saturday, August 20!

Enjoy a day in the sun and an evening under the stars!  Bring your picnic to this year's Quad City Bank & Trust Riverfront Pops and rock out to The Eagles Greatest Hits.  It’s a spectacular, live symphonic rock hybrid like none other!  This concert is packed with classic Eagles favorites like Take it to the Limit, Desperado, and Hotel California.  The program will climax with our traditional, rousing renditions of both Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture and Sousa’s Stars and Stripes Forever set to a brilliant fireworks display!

 

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ROCKIN' ROAD TO DUBLIN The New Generation of Irish Dance

The new sensation changing the Irish Dance world, ROCKIN’ ROAD TO DUBLIN, will come to the Adler Theatre on Friday, October 7 at 7:30 p.m.  Created by the 2009 World Champion of Irish Dance, Scott Doherty, and worldwide touring Irish musician, Chris Smith, ROCKIN’ ROAD TO DUBLIN is the new generation of Irish music and dance.  A fusion of rock and Irish music, ROCKIN’ ROAD TO DUBLIN combines the best of both worlds to thrust Irish Dance back into the spotlight.  This stylish, can’t-miss spectacle is the perfect balance between concert and stage show.  Come be part of history as ROCKIN’ ROAD TO DUBLIN redefines Irish Dance during its first national tour.  www.RockinRoadToDublin.com

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THE SCOTT COUNTY REGIONAL AUTHORITY AWARDS GRANT TO CHURCHES UNITED

Churches United of the Quad City Area is pleased to announce that The Doris & Victor Day Foundation has awarded us a $20,000.00 grant, in support of social services.  This much appreciated funding will directly support our Hunger and Shelter ministries.  Winnie’s Place Emergency Shelter celebrates its 10th anniversary this year as a shelter for women (with or without children) who are homeless and/or victims of domestic violence in the Quad City Area.  Our 25 food pantries and 3 hot meal sites are located throughout the Quad City Area, and freely serve any who are in need of food.  We are very thankful to the Doris & Victor Day Foundation for its continued support of Churches United’s social service ministries, and for its sustained care and concern for this community. 

Churches United has a 55-year history of reaching out to our community.  Its 136 member churches represent 50,000 people from the Quad City Area.  For information about services offered, or ways to support Churches United, call 563-332-5002, or visit our website at www.CUQCA.org.
 

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Moline Police responded to an armed robbery

Moline Police responded to an armed robbery at the LeClaire Food Mart 1830 5th Avenue Saturday morning the 23rd of July at 6:33 AM for a hold up alarm.

Responding Officers found the owner and clerk who stated a white male brandishing a handgun franticly entered the store and demanded the keys to the clerk’s vehicle, a black 2014 Toyota Camry. 

The suspect took the vehicle and was later a suspect in an incident in Colona. The subject was then pursued by Henry County Deputies ending in the stolen vehicle being wrecked.

Moline Police continue to work with Henry County Investigators on the case and hope to have enough information to take to the Rock Island County State’s Attorney soon.
 

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Rauner Signs Legislation

CHICAGO – Governor Bruce Rauner signed Senate Bill 238 today, which further reinforces Illinois as a leader in early childhood education. This is amplified by the recent historic increase to the early childhood education block grant in the stopgap bridge.

 

“Early childhood education is an area that everyone can be proud of in Illinois,” Governor Bruce Rauner said. “Today provides us the chance to celebrate the role early childhood education plays in Illinois and the role Illinois plays in early childhood education across the nation.”

 

Illinois was the first state in the country to ensure a portion of early childhood education block grant went directly to programs for infants and toddlers up to age three. SB 238 clarifies the original intent of the law and ensures that eventually 20 percent of the early childhood block grant will be spent on programs that support children from birth to age three. This is done by allocating 25 percent of any additional early childhood block grant funds each year for the infant-toddler set aside.

 

“Research shows that emotional, cognitive and physical capacities are developed by experiences in the first five years of life, and those first three years are especially critical,” First Lady and President of the Ounce of Prevention Fund Diana Rauner said. “We know that children thrive in responsive, stimulating environments, and that supporting families in their children’s early years promotes healthy development. This bill will prioritize funding for our youngest learners to provide children access to high-quality programs and other supports.”

 

It is truly a bipartisan bill and received unanimous support from the General Assembly.

 

"Educating our children requires us to invest the proper resources to ensure their success," State Senator Kimberly Lightford (D-Maywood) said. "We have made great efforts in improving developmental education over the last ten years.  This legislation helps us to continue that work and move toward closing under achievement gaps without taking away from other valuable early childhood education programs."

 

"As policy makers we have an obligation to support our children, and that begins with making education a priority,” said State Senator Karen McConnaughay (R-West Dundee). “Ensuring Illinois children have the academic support they need to flourish not only sets them up for success, but will translate into a better future for the entire state."

 

As part of the stopgap bridge, the early childhood education block grant will receive an additional $75 million. This is a record investment for the state’s youngest learners.

 

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Rauner Urges Vote on Term Limits

On the heels of a Cook County Judge ruling against putting a popular measure on the ballot that would create independently drawn legislative maps, Governor Bruce Rauner today reiterated his push for good government reforms including a call for the Illinois General Assembly to vote on a term limits constitutional amendment in the fall veto session.

Following his speech in Chicago, Governor Rauner will take his message directly to the people of Illinois on a two-day swing from Rockford to Mt. Vernon.

Remarks as prepared for delivery:

Over the past two years, the people of Illinois, Democrats and Republicans alike, have demanded reform. In 2014 the entrenched politicians holding power in Springfield ignored those demands. They used the Illinois court system to stop proposals for term limits and fair maps that could have led to the reforms the people want.

Term limits and fair maps would give the people of Illinois more control over our broken political system.

But the politicians holding power said no.

Last week they said no again. A lower court threw out this year’s Fair Maps proposal that has the support of nearly 600,000 Illinois citizens, support from both Democrats and Republicans.

We cannot let this stand. The only way to overcome entrenched political power is for the people of Illinois to never give up, to keep pushing forward for reform. That’s why we’re here today.

Term limits is an issue I believe in deeply. And so do the people of Illinois. Term limits is supported by 80% of the people I talk to, and it seems like 80% of the politicians are opposed.  Our people want term limits now more than ever, and that’s why I’m so committed to continue the fight to make it happen.

You know, I’ve been Governor of Illinois for a year and a half now.  We’ve gotten some important things done.  But I’m as frustrated as everyone else that we haven’t been able to tackle the biggest challenges facing our state.  These past 18 months have been a humbling experience - I’ve learned just how entrenched the politicians holding power are.  They don’t want to change. They are focused on their own power, rather than empowering people.  But I have also learned that you want me to keep working to fix our broken political system. That is just what I plan to do.

 

But I need your help to get it done.

As I’ve travelled the state, I’ve learned the most from talking to people, not politicians.  I’ve talked to people in factory break rooms, in coffee shops, in milking barns, in office buildings and at kitchen tables.  After you spend enough time in Springfield, it’s inspiring to talk with people facing real challenges every day and seeing how hard they work to get ahead. It makes me want to work that much harder for all the people of Illinois.

Our people want action on the challenges we face.  People want us to fix the broken system that has put our state deep in the hole.  But in Springfield, too many career politicians holding power have been happy to kick the can down the road and do nothing about our biggest problems.

That is how we ended up with a $100 billion unfunded pension liability. Even with our massive tax bills, our government spends a dollar-thirty for every dollar it takes in.  It simply defies common sense. The people I talk to every day balance their budgets, and they expect us to balance the State’s. To do that, we need new people with their new ideas in Springfield.

 

People in business are successful by making things happen.  In politics, career politicians don’t have to make anything happen to get re-elected.  If they play their cards right, they’ve got a lifetime job. We’ve got politicians in Springfield who’ve been there for twenty, thirty, forty years!  And look what’s happened to our state in that time. 

 

It’s time for change.  Two years ago, 600,000 thousand people in Illinois signed petitions calling for term limits on elected officials.  The politicians long in power ignored the petitions.  They won’t even debate the issue. That’s crazy!

We desperately need new faces and new ideas in Illinois politics. We need to make serving in government more about public service, and less about power and a government pension.  That should be obvious!

We need it in the Republican Party, in the Democratic Party, and throughout the political spectrum.  New faces need to believe they have an even chance of winning in a truly democratic election.  

 

Look at the numbers:

 

This year over 88% of candidates for our legislature faced no opposition in their primary.

Even more amazing, two-thirds have no opposition in the general election.  That’s not democracy. That’s a rigged system.

The system has given so many advantages to incumbents in the legislature that it’s very hard to vote them out -- even if they’re not doing a good job.

That’s just wrong.

But we can change that.  And we must change that. 

 

That’s why I’m calling on the General Assembly to vote on a term limits constitutional amendment when members return for the fall veto session.

It’s certainly true that getting term limits won’t fix every problem we face.  We’ve still got to wipe out corruption, conflicts of interest, and repair our broken pension system.  We’ve got to balance our budget without balancing it on the backs of the most needy.  We’ve got to get our property taxes moving down, not up. All of this will help create the environment we need to attract good jobs back to Illinois. 

 

We can overcome our challenges.  We can do it together.  First, we’ve got to fix Illinois’ broken political system.  And when we fix the system, we can take on any challenge Illinois faces.

 

Term limits will go a long way toward fixing the system by changing the culture back to public service, not personal gain, by forcing the lifetime politicians to find new jobs, and by bringing new faces and new ideas to Springfield.

All of the changes we need won’t happen right away.  This will take time. But now we’ll be moving in the right direction.

 

Instead of gridlock and inaction, we’ll be moving forward. 

 

And every day we’ll get closer to the future we, our kids and our grandkids deserve. Illinois can be the economic engine of the Midwest again.  We can be a magnet for the best companies from all over the world and the best jobs, just as it used to be. From our rich farmland to busy factory floors to tech start-ups, Illinois will be going and growing again.

 

Now, cynics will say this is an impossible dream to get term limits voted on by this legislature. But that dream can become a reality if the people of Illinois demand it.

And we are not stopping with term limits. We’ll keep pressing every day to lower our property taxes, to protect all our taxpayers, to protect and grow our jobs, and to ensure every child has a chance at a great education. We can do this – if we work together for the reforms our state needs.

We’re facing tough challenges, but we can meet those challenges if we work together for reform.  One step at a time.  Starting right now.  It starts with term limits.

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President Signs Grassley Measure


WASHINGTON – Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley today issued the following statement after President Obama signed the Protecting Our Lives by Initiating COPS Expansion (POLICE) Act into law.

 

“Our brave men and women of law enforcement put themselves in harm’s way every day to keep us safe, as we’ve seen in their valiant response to recent terrorist attacks and ambushes on their own colleagues.  We need to do all we can to ensure our law enforcement and first responders are equipped with the necessary tools and training to safely and swiftly resolve these dangerous situations.  The POLICE Act boosts active shooter training for police and other first responders who are quick to run toward a crisis when others are running away,” Grassley said.

 

The Protecting Our Lives by Initiating COPS Expansion (POLICE) Act, which Grassley led out the Judiciary Committee in May, allows law enforcement and medical personnel across the country to use existing federal grant funds for active shooter response training.  Under the bill, the grant funds can also be used for training civilians on the appropriate response when confronted with an active shooter. 

 

President Obama signed the POLICE Act into law today. It is the 12th bill reported out of the Judiciary Committee under Grassley’s leadership to become law. In the previous Congress, only five bills reported out of the committee were signed into law.

 

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Scott Area Recycling Center to Celebrate Grand Reopening July 28

It’s GO time! Waste Commission of Scott County will celebrate the launch of its new recycling program, GO All In, on Thursday, July 28. The Grand Reopening from 1 to 3 p.m. will feature a ribbon cutting with the Quad Cities Chamber at 2 p.m. at the newly renovated Scott Area Recycling Center, 5640 Carey Ave., Davenport. The media is invited to attend. A community open house will follow from 4 to 7 p.m. Light refreshments will be served and tours of the facility will be provided.

“We are thrilled to open our doors and showcase the new facility and recycling program with our partners,” said Kathy Morris, Director of the Commission.

The Commission owns and operates the Scott Area Recycling Center, which has been closed since October 2015 for construction to allow for recycling program changes. The nearly $11 million project includes $4.6 million for facility updates, $3.1 million for recycling processing equipment, and $2.7 million for new recycling carts for Davenport and Bettendorf residents.

The GO All In recycling program starts Aug. 1. Residents now can place all their recyclables in their new carts, which were delivered in June and July. Sorting of recyclables is no longer required, but recycling and garbage are still separate. The new recycling carts will be collected on a resident’s first recycling day falling on or after Aug. 1.

The new recycling program includes more materials: more plastics, gable-top cartons (such as those for milk and juice), and canisters that hold foods such as chips and nuts (e.g. Pringles cans). All containers should be empty and rinsed, and boxes should be flattened. Garbage, yard waste and plastic bags do not go into the new recycling carts. Davenport and Bettendorf residents should look at the graphic on the lids of their carts or visit goallinqc.org to find out what’s recyclable.

The Commission is an inter-governmental agency whose mission is to provide environmentally sound and economically feasible solid waste management. For more information about the Commission, please call (563) 381-1300 or visit www.wastecom.com. For more information about recycling, residents may call (563) 388-1450 or visit goallinqc.org.

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DISNEY LIVE! MICKEY AND MINNIE'S DOORWAY TO MAGIC TICKETS ON SALE AUGUST 2 IN MOLINE

Open the door to reveal mesmerizing worlds of unforgettable Disney moments and grand illusions when Disney Live! Mickey and Minnie's Doorway to Magic visits Moline on November 4, 2016 at iWireless Center. Tickets go on sale August 2, 2016.

Join Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse and the comical duo of Donald and Goofy as 25 of your favorite characters surprise and captivate at every turn of the knob! See the Fairy Godmother transform Cinderella's rags into a beautiful ball gown in a split second; the Toy Story gang defy the dimensions of Andy's toy box with the help of the green army men; and the spectacular stage debut of Rapunzel and Flynn Rider as they rise into the sky amidst the floating lanterns. With special appearances by Snow White, Tinker Bell and Aladdin's Genie, you never know what to expect or who might join in the fun. In Disney Live! Mickey and Minnie's Doorway to Magic, you hold the ultimate key to unlocking your imagination.

MOLINE, IL
iWireless Center (1201 River Drive, Moline, IL 61265)
Show Date & Time:   Friday, November 4, 2016   4:00PM & 7:00PM               
Ticket Prices:           Ticket start at $15.00
To order tickets by phone:   800-745-3000
Online:                    www.ticketmaster.com         www.disneylive.com

To learn more about Disney Live!, go to DisneyLive.com, visit us on Facebook and YouTube and follow us on Twitter @Disney Live!

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Deere Layoffs Coming to Harvester Works

Deere & Company announcing on Friday that approximately 120 production employees at John Deere Harvester Works in East Moline will be placed on indefinite layoff. The move is effective Sept. 6. The factory’s workforce currently includes approximately 1,050 production employees. Deere says the company continues to adjust the size of its production workforce to market demand for products manufactured at each of its factories. In previous announcements, Deere said it expects sales of agricultural equipment to decrease for the 2016 fiscal year.

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Grassley:Afghanistan


 

WASHINGTON – Sen. Chuck Grassley is pressing the Defense Department to clarify and respond to potentially misleading statements about the true cost of a compressed natural gas station in Afghanistan.  In a four-page-plus letter to Defense Secretary Ashton Carter, Grassley outlined questionable statements by a top defense official, who asserted that the gas station cost $5.1 million rather than $43 million, and the authenticity of new information on the cost that needs clarification.

 

Various Defense Department-approved analyses have shown the best possible estimate for the gas station cost is $43 million and suggested that no documentation exists that will support an exact cost, including the much lower cost of $5.1 million cited by Acting Under Secretary Brian McKeon during testimony before a Senate Armed Services Committee subcommittee.  Analysis was provided by Vestige Consulting, Williams Adley and the Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA).

 

“The assessments by the Vestige CEO and the DSCA Comptroller square with what the Williams Adley firm discovered, and what I know about the department’s shoddy bookkeeping practices,” Grassley wrote.  “For these reasons, the real cost of the CNG filling station will remain elusive -- unless Secretary McKeon is able to produce a complete set of documents that support his $5.1 million cost estimate.”

 

Grassley asked a series of questions seeking clarification on why the Defense Department pushed the lower cost estimate without documentation to back up the claim.

 

“If Secretary McKeon still stands behind his $5.1 million figure, I ask him to provide a complete set of underlying records to back it up,” Grassley wrote.  “I also ask that these be verified as accurate and complete by a certified public accountant.”

 

The compressed natural gas station was among several projects overseen by the Defense Department’s Task Force for Business and Stability Operations. The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction, after documenting numerous instances of excessive spending by the now-defunct task force and a shoddy record of projects, is now conducting two formal audits of the task force at Grassley’s request.

 

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Heat Could Lead to Buckling Pavement

 

SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) is urging motorists to be on the alert for the possibility of pavement buckling on roads throughout the state in the next few days due to the recent rainfall and extreme heat in the forecast.

 

The combination of very high temperatures and precipitation can lead to pavement expanding and ultimately buckling or blowing out, causing uneven driving surfaces in some areas. As long as the heat and humidity persists, IDOT will be monitoring the situation, with crews available to make repairs as quickly as possible if they are needed.

 

Motorists should be aware of slowing traffic and be prepared to move over for maintenance workers and other emergency personnel.

 

In addition, with the extreme heat, you are encouraged to carry drinking water with you when you travel. Getting stranded could be dangerous and dehydration can happen quickly in these conditions without proper hydration.

540**16

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IL Delegate: Superdelegate System Fails Voters

Ahead of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia today the party took a small step that could limit the role of convention superdelegates. 

Some Illinois delegates say more changes are sorely needed. 

Illinois has 26 superdelegates who are appointed by party leaders and vote for whichever candidate they choose, regardless of who wins the state presidential primary. 

Critics have long said the process can favor a candidate who is actually unpopular with voters. 

Jan Rodolfo, an Illinois delegate for Bernie Sanders, backed a plan to eliminate superdelegates altogether, but that idea was shot down.

"I'm a supporter of one person, one vote," she states. "And I think that superdelegates are really a class of party members who have undue weight, in terms of the way that their votes work. It really reinforces the status quo."

On Saturday, the DNC's Rules Committee agreed to set up a commission to meet after the November election. The group will consider changes to the party's nominating process, including getting rid of up to two-thirds of superdelegates.

If the last round of primaries and caucuses had not included superdelegates, Rodolfo says Bernie Sanders would likely have become the Democratic nominee, which could have brought about changes to the party's platform.

"If that were the case, then the situation going to the Democratic Platform Committee would've been very different," she points out. "Instead of a platform that, for example, completely failed to address the need for single-payer Medicare for all, which is something that the majority of Democrats support, that wouldn't have happened."

Still, even if the commission does support eliminating some superdelegates, the idea would still need approval from the DNC committee, which has squashed similar moves in the past.

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Bettendorf Police Release Advisory for Pokemon Go Players

Bettendorf Police took the remarkable step on Friday to put out a press release regarding the popular game Pokemon Go. The release, aimed at young children and teenage players of the popular game app, aimed to remind players about the laws that still apply even to those searching for their favorite Pokemon characters. The release reminds players not to attempt to capture Pokemon while driving, something that led a player in Maryland, captured in a recent viral video, to crash his car into a parked police vehicle. The reminder also pointed out that private property is still private property no matter whether you are chasing Pokemon characters, you're still trespassing. And finally, the release reaffirmed the local curfew which requires people ages 17 and under to be off the streets by 11 Pm Sunday through Thursday and by Midnight on Friday and Saturday, no exemptions for Pokemon hunters. You can read the complete press release on the Bettendorf Police Department Facebook page. 

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Mid Morning at the Movies with Sean Patrick and Linda Cook

On this week's Mid Morning at the Movies myself and Linda Cook talk about this week's new movies including Star Trek Beyond, Lights Out and Ice Age Collision Course. 

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GED, adult ed classes begin Aug. 9 at BHC

Black Hawk College offers GED, adult education, adult literacy and high school completion classes at no cost to students at a variety of locations.

A new session will begin Tuesday, Aug. 9.

For more information, visit www.bhc.edu/adulted or call or visit one of these learning sites:

Black Hawk College Community Education Center
404 E. Third St., Kewanee
309-854-1875

Black Hawk College Outreach Center
301 Avenue of the Cities, East Moline
309-796-8216

Black Hawk College Adult Learning Center
4610 Black Hawk Commons Drive, Rock Island
309-794-1072

High Roads Advantage
2004 SE Third St., Aledo
309-582-8181

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John Deere Historic Site Hosts Hammer In 2016 on August 6-7

 The company John Deere founded has a presence around the world, but it all started in Grand Detour, Illinois, where Deere forged the first commercially successful self-polishing steel plow back in 1837.  To celebrate the blacksmith’s history and trade, the John Deere Historic Site is hosting Hammer In 2016 on August 6-7. Dozens of blacksmiths from the Midwest will fill the grounds of the John Deere Historic Site to provide demonstrations, sell their work, and introduce the public to one of the oldest trades in the world.
         In addition to blacksmithing, other trades will be exhibiting their skills and selling their wares including basket weavers, broom makers, trappers, wheelwrights, woodwrights and more.
         From 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, visitors will see how blacksmiths and other tradesmen mold and craft their wares into works of art and household goods. Many of the products for sale during the event will be made on location.
         This year’s event is themed “Come to the other side of the anvil” because attendees will have an opportunity to get hands on experience as a blacksmith. This is a unique opportunity for all attendees ages 12 and older to actually try hammering and forging to make their own piece of iron work. Members of the Upper Midwest Blacksmith Association (UMBA) will provide training tents and will work with guests to let them experience the working side of the anvil.
 
         On Saturday, at noon, guests will be treated to the sound of dozens of blacksmiths hammering in unison during an official “Anvil Ring.”  A food vendor will be on site and a charity auction will also take place at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, August 6. Proceeds from the auction will be divided between the Upper Midwest Blacksmith and Illinois Valley Blacksmith Associations, both event sponsors, for their scholarship programs.
         “We are very excited to bring another Hammer In event to Grand Detour because it provides an unique opportunity to learn about the historical significance of blacksmithing and to see how the trade lives on as demonstrated by dozens of skilled professionals still practicing the trade today,” said Kristen Veto, Manager of the John Deere Historic Site.
         The John Deere Historic Site held its first Hammer In event in 2004, with 75 blacksmiths, attracting thousands from around the country. Hammer In events have been hosted here every other year since in an effort to celebrate the trade as well as the history and legacy of the company’s founder.
         Admission is $5.00 for 12 years and older, children under 12 are free. For more information, please contact the John Deere Historic Site at 815-652-4551. The Site is located five miles north of Dixon on Hwy 2 (Between Dixon and Oregon).
About the John Deere Historic Site
The John Deere Historic Site in Grand Detour is the original Illinois homestead of John Deere and is the location where he built his first commercially successful “self-polishing” steel plow. The Historic Site was designated as a Registered National Historic Landmark by the National Park Service, and a Historic Landmark of Agricultural Engineering by the American Society of Agricultural Engineers. The home Deere built still stands and is now accompanied by a replicated blacksmith shop, an exhibit of Deere’s original tools unearthed during an archeological dig, and a visitor center and gift shop. In the atmosphere of a friendly 19th century village, informed tour guides provide an entertaining and educational perspective of life on the prairie.  The John Deere Historic Site is open to the public May through October and is funded and managed by the John Deere Foundation. For more information, please call 815-652-4551 or visit www.VisitJohnDeere.com.

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American Red Cross Seeking AmeriCorps Team Members

MOLINE, IL, July 22, 2016 - The American Red Cross Central and Southern Illinois Region is currently seeking individuals to serve as full-time AmeriCorps team members. Anyone looking for an opportunity to make a difference in the community while gaining new skills and experiences is encouraged to apply. AmeriCorps team members work with the Red Cross helping to empower residents to prepare and recover from disasters.
“AmeriCorps team members play a critical role in helping the Red Cross teach people about disaster preparedness and recovery,” said Alyssa Pollock, Regional Disaster Officer for the American Red Cross Central and Southern Illinois. “AmeriCorps team members gain valuable skills through the program and it is a rewarding experience because you are helping others.”
The American Red Cross Central and Southern Illinois Region currently has AmeriCorps team member openings in Bloomington, Moline, Peoria, Quincy and Springfield. Team members will serve from August 22, 2016 to July 22, 2017.
BENEFITS:
Invaluable experience from a nationally and internationally-respected organization for school, a future job or new career
Extensive training
$5,775 AmeriCorps Education Award (upon successful completion of service term commitment and 1700 hours of service)
Living stipend paid bi-weekly
Basic Health Insurance for AmeriCorps member
Subsidized childcare
Student loan forbearance (on qualifying loans)
REQUIREMENTS:
Successfully serve in the position, serve 35 hours a week and meet the 1700 minimum requirement for a full term of service
Be a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident
Must be 18 years of age at the start date of service
Have a valid Driver's License & clean driving record
Pass required criminal background checks
Members should also be comfortable working with a wide variety of people from all walks of life and backgrounds, and respect the American Red Cross fundamental principles.

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World's Longest, Largest, Oldest Bike Touring Event Remembers Lost Riders

An estimated 20,000 bicyclists will ride all or some of the week-long annual ride across Iowa, which starts Sunday. The route of the Des Moines Register's Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa, or RAGBRAI, this year connects small towns that are often unseen and unappreciated. 

T.J. Juskiewicz, director of RAGBRAI, said for the 44th annual ride, cyclists will be observing one of those miles in silence.

"We've lost eight cyclists in the state of Iowa this year, due to accidents on the bike," he said. "And, we're going to remember the cyclists and other ones that couldn't be on RAGBRAI this year due to fatalities suffered on the bicycle."

Juskiewicz said the silent portion of the ride on the first day is to promote safer cycling for both drivers and riders.

He said mainly the ride is about having fun while biking and camping. And, for many riders, helping causes important to them.

"They're riding for, you know, to stop juvenile diabetes or an answer to Parkinson's or just so many different causes," he said. "They're riding to raise funds for a different charity, maybe in support of their aunt that passed away from a different disease."

Juskiewicz said of the 20,000 riders participating, around 65 percent of them come from outside of Iowa, making RAGBRAI the state's largest tourist attraction for out-of-state visitors. For those who make it to the ending point in Muscatine, they take part in a tradition started at the first ride in 1973.

"The climactic moment of RAGBRAI is when the riders reach the Mississippi River," he added. "After riding their bicycle seven days across the great state of Iowa, when the Mississippi River opens up in front of them they dip their tire in the Mississippi River and that signifies their conclusion to RAGBRAI."

Each day the riders pedal between 50 and 75 miles for a 420-mile total.

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New Data Shows Illinois Voters Favor State Workers in Contract Talks

Illinois voters like labor unions, but generally find Governor Bruce Rauner's approach to labor negotiations to be unfavorable, according to a new poll. This month the progressive political research group ALG took a survey of about 600 likely Illinois voters. The findings show that more than half trust the state's public employee unions more than the governor when it comes to labor disputes. 

Anders Lindall public affairs director with AFSCME Council 31, part of the state's largest employee union, said the poll comes as the union has been urging Rauner to return to bargaining a new contract. 

"The poll shows that voters reject Rauner's approach to try impose his unfair terms on workers, potentially forcing a strike," he said. "On the contrary, voters strongly support public service workers."

According to the poll, 54 percent of Illinois voters favor the unions in the negotiations, while only 30 percent support Rauner. However, in a statement to Capitol Fax, Rauner's office called the research a "fabricated poll." 

Earlier this year, Rauner's administration asked the state labor board to allow him to impose new terms in the state worker contract. The board denied that request two weeks ago. Lindall argues the poll suggests that Illinois voters want to see the governor and state employees come to an agreement. The talks between AFSCME and the governor have been stalled since January. 

"Not confrontation, but compromise," he added. "That's what AFSCME wants, clearly that's what the people of Illinois want. Bruce Rauner trying to force confrontation is out on an island with the support of a small minority of Illinoisans."

According to the union, Rauner's demands include a four-year wage freeze and doubling workers' costs for health care.

The full report can be read online here.

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New National Guard Policy

SPRINGFIELD, IL (07/21/2016)(readMedia)-- The Illinois Army National Guard has instituted a new policy designed to focus support for community events from Illinois Army National Guard units to the local communities where those units are based.

Beginning with requests received by the Illinois National Guard Public Affairs Office after July 22, 2016; most community relations requests including speakers, vehicle static displays, and parade support will either be supported by a unit within 50 miles of the event or will not be supported.

"The Illinois Army National Guard is a community-based organization and it is vital that we continue to communicate with and support the communities where our Soldiers live and work," said Brig. Gen. Michael Zerbonia, the Commander of the Illinois Army National Guard and Assistant Adjutant General – Army of the Illinois National Guard.

"At the same time, we have a responsibility to the taxpayers to conserve training time and resources for both our state and federal missions. This policy focuses support from local units to local communities."

Color guards are expensive requiring a minimum of four Soldiers and additional training time and therefore are further restricted. Color guards in a paid status will be restricted to those in the unit commander's yearly training plan or to events of statewide or national impact.

In addition, Soldiers will be allowed to volunteer in a non-paid status for community relations support outside the 50-mile radius as long as the support falls within U.S. Army regulations. Soldiers could wear a U.S. Army dress uniform when they volunteer, but they would be responsible for any transportation costs and could not operate any Army equipment.

The policy allows the Illinois Army National Guard Chief of Staff to grant exceptions on a case-by-case basis. There are more general exceptions to the policy. For example, the Illinois Army National Guard's 144th Army Band has a statewide community relations mission and therefore will continue to support events throughout the state.

"We have about 50 facilities scattered throughout the state, so the vast majority of Illinois communities fall within 50 miles of one of our units," said Lt. Col. Brad Leighton, the Illinois National Guard public affairs director. "What we want to avoid is having Soldiers driving half-way across the state to support events. There is a process to grant exceptions when such support is in the best interest of the Illinois Army National Guard."

Additional guidance within the policy addresses safety and liability concerns in supporting community events and sets administrative deadlines to allow full review of certain community relations requests.

For example, Army National Guard helicopter static displays are expensive and already require full review by Illinois Army National Guard leadership as well as the National Guard Bureau in Washington, D.C. To get that review completed, the Illinois National Guard public affairs office needs to have the request at least 90 days before the event.

Requests for the 144th Army Band must also be submitted a minimum of 90 days before the event or the request will not be supported.

"All Department of Defense community relations events are supported by existing training dollars. There is no separate funding for support to community events," Leighton said.

"Supporting community relations events benefits both the Illinois Army National Guard and our communities. Our Soldiers derive training value from supporting community events and we are also able to develop and strengthen relationships with our communities by being active locally. However, most of our Soldiers only get limited training time per year. There needs to be a good balance between community relations support and other training requirements."

View Online: http://readme.readmedia.com/Illinois-Army-National-Guard-institutes-new-Community-Relations-Policy/13861210

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Genesis First To Use New Stent

DAVENPORT, Iowa – July 18, 2016 – Dr. Nicolas Shammas and a catheterization team at Genesis Medical Center, East Rusholme Street inserted a new vein stent for the first time in the United States on Thursday, July 14.

Before Thursday at Genesis Medical Center, East Rusholme Street, Shammas said he would have used a stent designed for heart procedures and adapted it for use to open blood flow in the leg vein. Instead he became the first cardiologist in the U.S. to use the Bard Venovo venous stent specifically designed for leg veins.

Shammas was the third cardiologist in the world to use the Venova scaffolding in a clinical trial.

Julie Huffer, 43, of Bettendorf was the first patient.

She explained that she woke up on a morning last July with a left ankle "that looked like it had a doughnut around it.''

Several conditions were ruled out before Julie had an appointment with Dr. Shammas of Cardiovascular Medicine PC.  He told Julie he was almost certain he knew what the problem was. He diagnosed compression of a vein in her left leg and reduced blood flow, causing the pain and swelling.

Following the minimally invasive procedure on Thursday, Shammas said Julie should notice improvement in her symptoms.

"It was 95 percent restricted,'' Julie said of the vein’s blood flow a few hours after the procedure. "It already feels different to me. I was willing to do anything to get rid of the pain and swelling.  Dr. Shammas said I would be a good candidate for this

-- MORE --

2 – Genesis Team First In U.S. To Use New Stent

study and I wanted to do it. Studies like this are important for future patients.”

The past year has been a busy one for Julie. She and her husband, Frank, were married in October and have three children contributing to a hectic life. Because of the pain and swelling, Julie said she was sometimes challenged by routine day-to-day activities.

“I'm looking forward to getting back to feeling like myself again" said Julie.  

By Friday when she was discharged after one night from the hospital, Julie reported that her leg was feeling much better.

Shammas said the Venovo stent is the first designed specifically for opening leg veins. He said a range of sizes is available and the stent is flexible and should adhere well to leg veins.

"What we have been doing, using heart stents for leg veins, was not ideal. The procedure went perfectly,'' Shammas said.  "We're hopeful Julie will have a lot of relief from the swelling and pain.''

Reduced flow in leg veins can also cause ulcers and potentially dangerous clotting. Shammas said the condition is common.

Shammas has spent 25 years participating in research.  Innovation is a culture within Cardiovascular Medicine PC and the Genesis Heart Institute.  Genesis patients have access to a number of clinical trials and new techniques close to home.

Dr. Shammas has published more than 200 manuscripts, abstracts and book chapters and presented at national and international meetings including the Middle East, Europe, and China. He has served as a reviewer and on the editorial board of several peer-reviewed journals. He has participated in more than 125 multi-center clinical trials.

Use of the Venovo stent is part of a research study.  Outcomes from use of the device are unproven and the device is not yet approved for general use in the United States. Some patients may not meet guidelines for use of the stent.  It is unknown whether patients will experience different or improved results compared to the use of devices and procedures now approved.

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RI Deer Applications Begin on Monday

 

 

Effective July 25, 2016 the City of Rock Island will begin accepting applications for the 2016/17 archery deer hunting season, as defined by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.

 

Applications may be obtained from the front desk of the Police Department, Rock Island Parks and Recreation Office, or online at rigov.org. All potential hunters must return completed applications to the Police Department by 5pm, August 26, 2016, to be considered for a permit. With City approval, deer hunting will be permitted on a select number of sites.

 

Residents with questions regarding the Deer Management Program should contact Deputy Police Chief Jason Foy at (309) 732-2701.

 

All approved hunters will be required to attend a mandatory meeting scheduled for a later date. 

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BHC Students Car Order Textbooks Beginning Aug 25

 

 

Black Hawk College students can order their fall textbooks online beginning Monday, July 25.

 

For instructions or to order, go to www.bhc.edu/bookstore.

 

Students may use their financial aid in the bookstores Aug. 15 to Sept. 2 to purchase textbooks, school supplies, clothing, laptops/tablets, lunch vouchers and parking permits. Student parking permits cost $25 per semester and are required for all parking lots at both campuses.

 

 

Black Hawk College students can order their fall textbooks online beginning Monday, July 25.

 

For instructions or to order, go to www.bhc.edu/bookstore.

 

Students may use their financial aid in the bookstores Aug. 15 to Sept. 2 to purchase textbooks, school supplies, clothing, laptops/tablets, lunch vouchers and parking permits. Student parking permits cost $25 per semester and are required for all parking lots at both campuses.

 

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Excessive Heat Warning Remains In Effect

AN EXCESSIVE HEAT WARNING MEANS THAT A PROLONGED PERIOD OF
DANGEROUSLY HOT TEMPERATURES AND HIGH HUMIDITY WILL OCCUR.  THIS
COMBINATION WILL LEAD TO A DANGEROUS SITUATION IN WHICH HEAT
ILLNESSES ARE LIKELY.  DRINK PLENTY OF FLUIDS... STAY IN AN AIR-
CONDITIONED ROOM... STAY OUT OF THE SUN... AND CHECK ON RELATIVES
AND NEIGHBORS... ESPECIALLY THE ELDERLY.

TAKE EXTRA PRECAUTIONS IF YOU WORK OR SPEND TIME OUTSIDE.  WHEN
POSSIBLE... RESCHEDULE STRENUOUS ACTIVITIES TO EARLY MORNING OR
EVENING.  KNOW THE SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS OF HEAT EXHAUSTION AND HEAT
STROKE.  WEAR LIGHT WEIGHT AND LOOSE FITTING CLOTHING WHEN
POSSIBLE AND DRINK PLENTY OF WATER.

TO REDUCE RISK DURING OUTDOOR WORK THE OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND
HEALTH ADMINISTRATION RECOMMENDS SCHEDULING FREQUENT REST BREAKS
IN SHADED OR AIR CONDITIONED ENVIRONMENTS.  ANYONE OVERCOME BY
HEAT SHOULD BE MOVED TO A COOL AND SHADED LOCATION.  HEAT STROKE
IS AN EMERGENCY... CALL 9 1 1.

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Illinois home sales, prices climb higher in June and first half of 2016

Homebuyer demand drove sales and prices higher in June and marked a strong first half of the year for the Illinois housing market, according to Illinois REALTORS®.

Statewide home sales (including single-family homes and condominiums) in June 2016 totaled 18,593 homes sold, up 1.4 percent from 18,328 in June 2015. Year-to-date, home sales totaled 78,547 homes sold, an increase of 5.5 percent compared to the first six months of 2015.

The statewide median price in June was $204,000 up 5.8 percent from June 2015 when the median price was $192,800. The median is a typical market price where half the homes sold for more and half sold for less. The year-to-date median price was $183,174, a 7.3 percent gain.

“Sellers continue to reap the rewards of a summer market where buyers are choosing from a greatly diminished pool of properties,” said Mike Drews, GRI, president of Illinois REALTORS® and broker-associate with Charles B. Doss & Co. in Aurora. “The market dynamics we have experienced throughout the spring and early summer persist as the number of homes for sale struggle to keep pace with buyer demand.”

The time it took to sell a home in June averaged 55 days, down from 62 days a year ago. Available housing inventory totaled 64,724 homes for sale, a 15.1 percent decline from June 2015 when there were 76,207 homes on the market.

The monthly average commitment rate for a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage was 3.57 percent in June 2016, a decline from the previous month, according to the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp. In June 2015 it averaged 3.98 percent.

In the nine-county Chicago Primary Metropolitan Statistical Area (PMSA), home sales (single-family and condominiums) in June 2016 totaled 13,620 homes sold, up 2.1 percent from June 2015 sales of 13,342 homes. The median price in June 2016 was $242,500 in the Chicago PMSA, an increase of 4.6 percent from $231,900 in June 2015. Year-to-date home sales totaled 56,678, a 6.3 percent increase while the median price for the first half of the year averaged $222,500, a 6.0 percent increase.

“Another month of modest gains in both sales and prices,” said Geoffrey J.D. Hewings, director of the Regional Economics Applications Laboratory at the University of Illinois. “The outlook for the next three months suggests annual growth but the month-to-month changes in sales point to some potential declines in sales, but not prices.”

According to the data, forty-two (42) Illinois counties reported sales gains for June 2016 over previous-year numbers, including Tazewell County, up 26.1 percent with 227 units sold; McHenry County, up 16 percent with 680 units sold; and Cook County, up 0.1 percent with 7,137 units sold. Forty-eight (48) counties showed year-over-year median price increases including Will County, up 7.4 percent to $210,000; Madison County, up 6.1 percent to $132,500; DuPage County, up 4.2 percent to $273,000, and Sangamon County, up 8.4 percent to $149,000.

The city of Chicago saw a 0.2 percent year-over-year home sales increase in June 2016 with 3,210 sales, up from 3,202 in June 2015. The median price of a home in the city of Chicago in June 2016 was $300,000, up 4.1 percent compared to June 2015 when it was $288,250. Year to date home sales totaled 13,953, a 4.1 percent increase compared to last year and the median price averaged $275,000, a 3.5 percent gain.

“Chicago homebuyers are having to work harder to find properties which meet their criteria and budget,” said Dan Wagner, president of the Chicago Association of REALTORS® and senior vice president for government relations at the Oakbrook-based Inland Real Estate Group of Companies, Inc. “A combination of low mortgage rates and a limited number of properties on the market is pushing median prices higher, a continuation of a trend we have seen for much of the warm-weather selling season.”

Sales and price information is generated by Multiple Listing Service closed sales reported by 28 participating Illinois REALTOR® local boards and associations including Midwest Real Estate Data LLC data as of July 7, 2016 for the period June 1 through June 30, 2016. The Chicago PMSA, as defined by the U.S. Census Bureau, includes the counties of Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Grundy, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry and Will.

Illinois REALTORS® is a voluntary trade association whose more than 44,000 members are engaged in all facets of the real estate industry. In addition to serving the professional needs of its members, Illinois REALTORS® works to protect the rights of private property owners in the state by recommending and promoting legislation to safeguard and advance the interest of real property ownership.

Find Illinois housing stats, data and the University of Illinois REAL forecast at www.illinoisrealtors.org/marketstats.  

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More Illinoisans Leave Labor Force

The Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) announced today that the unemployment rate in June decreased 0.2 percentage points to 6.2 percent and nonfarm payrolls decreased by -2,200 jobs, based on preliminary data released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and IDES. The decrease in Illinois’ unemployment rate is largely due to a decline in the labor force. Job growth is still below the national average, with Illinois -51,500 jobs short of its peak employment level reached in September 2000.

“In June, Illinois experienced yet another exodus and over-the-year job growth is still at half the national rate,” Director Jeff Mays said. “As we do our part in expanding services that help jobseekers find work more quickly, structural reforms are necessary to get the state’s economy back on track.”

“We’ve lost more than 9,000 manufacturing jobs over the last year, and replacing those middle class jobs has been an uphill battle due to the high costs facing Illinois businesses,” Illinois Department of Commerce Acting Director Sean McCarthy said. “Manufacturing has been a critical part of our state’s economy, providing stable, good paying jobs for Illinois families. We need action on structural reforms to Illinois’ dysfunctional worker’s compensation, regulation, and tax systems to make our state competitive and bring solid middle class jobs back to Illinois.”

In June, the three industry sectors with the largest gains in employment were: Professional and Business Services (+3,000); Financial Activities (+1,700); and Other Services (+1,500). The two industry sectors with the largest declines in employment were: Educational and Health Services (-7,300) and Trade, Transportation and Utilities (-1,000).

Over the year, nonfarm payroll employment increased by +41,300 jobs with the largest gains in Leisure and Hospitality (+19,100); and Professional and Business Services (+16,700). Industry sectors with the largest over-the-year declines in June include: Manufacturing (-9,100) and Information Services (-2,700). The 0.7 percent over-the-year gain in Illinois is less than the 1.7 percent gain posted by the nation in June.

The state’s unemployment rate is higher than the national unemployment rate reported for June 2016, which increased to 4.9 percent. The Illinois unemployment rate stood 0.4 percentage points above the unemployment rate a year ago when it was 5.8 percent.

The number of unemployed workers decreased -4.1 percent from the prior month to 409,300, up +8.5 percent over the same month for the prior year. The labor force grew by +1.9 percent in June over the prior year, but decreased 0.5 percent over-the-month. The unemployment rate identifies those individuals who are out of work and are seeking employment. An individual who exhausts or is ineligible for benefits is still reflected in the unemployment rate if they actively seek work.

To help connect jobseekers to employers who are hiring, IDES’ maintains the state’s largest job search engine IllinoisJoblink.com (IJL). IJL recently showed that 55,995 resumes were posted and 173,330 help-wanted ads were available.

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Mid Morning in the Cities Lt. General Michael Flynn on Donald Trump and his new book

Lt General Michael Flynn made headlines on Monday with his speech touting Donald Trump at the Republican National Convention. General Flynn is also a New York Times Bestselling author as his new book "The Field of Fight: How We Can Win the Global War on Terror entered the bestseller list this week. General Flynn was my guest on Mid Morning in the Cities to talk about why he supports Donald Trumop for President and his thoughts on battling extremism in the Middle East. 

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Summertime Jobs and Income Taxes

Summertime jobs are a good thing for young people in particular and just about anyone in general.

For many young people, those summertime jobs are some of the very first real employment in their lives and that also means that just like everyone else, they will be required to file an income tax return and pay their share of taxes.

Michael Devine with the IRS in St Louis says accurate record keeping is essential as always…

Devine also says if anyone should receive an envelope from the IRS, don’t over think the situation, simply open the envelope and see what’s inside…

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IDOT In Motion


SPRINGFIELD – With construction season in full swing this summer, the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) encourages you to sign up for the “IDOT in Motion” email subscription service to stay informed about projects in your area.

 

“We are constantly striving to better connect with you, our customers, to tell you about the work we are doing to improve Illinois,” said Illinois Transportation Secretary Randy Blankenhorn. “IDOT in Motion is a great way to keep up to date on projects happening in your community. It’s easy, it’s convenient and there is no charge to subscribe and receive regular updates through email.”

 

You can click here to subscribe to IDOT in Motion. Once you are on the IDOT in Motion page, select the email list for the IDOT highway district nearest you to receive the latest on upcoming and ongoing projects in your area.

 

In addition to construction alerts, you can receive updates on other IDOT programs and initiatives, including information on motorcycle safety, passenger rail and more. Approximately 8,000 people currently subscribe to IDOT in Motion.

529**16

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Hot Weather Tips

Springfield – As the summer continues to heat up across the state, it is important that community members continue to check on older persons who may be unable or unwilling to seek assistance. Heat-related illness can be life threatening, and health problems and isolation are factors that make older adults particularly susceptible to heat stress.

Older adults have a reduced capacity to perspire and are therefore more vulnerable to heat. As a result, people who do not perspire are not helped by fans; they must have air conditioning to recover from the accumulating effect of the heat. A few hours a day in air conditioning is extremely important to protect health and life.

“It’s important that we take care of each other within our communities. Excessive heat can be extremely dangerous for many people, especially older adults,” says Jean Bohnhoff, Director of the Illinois Department on Aging (IDoA). “I encourage people across the state to take the time to check in on the older adults in and around your community. Fifteen minutes out of your day could help save an older adult from serious effects of heat-related illness,” she continued.

Below are several facts and tips for dealing with excessive heat; these Hot Tips and other resources can also be found on theIDoA website:

 

WHAT IS A HEAT WAVE?

 

· Generally, a heat wave is three straight days of 90 degree temperatures or more with high humidity.

· Heat waves are the second leading cause of death among weather-related events.

 

WHAT IS A HEAT INDEX?

 

· High temperatures and high relative humidity determine the heat index.

· In summer, humidity makes it feel hotter. If the temperature is 90 degrees and the relative humidity is 80 percent, it will feel like it is 113 degrees. Your body will react to the 113 degree temperature.

 

 

 WHAT CAN BE DONE TO BEAT THE HEAT?

 

Some common sense tips for handling the heat include the following:

 

· Drink lots of water and natural juices (avoid alcoholic beverages, coffees and colas)

· Avoid going out into blazing heat whenever possible

 

· Avoid or minimize physical exertion

 

· Keep shades drawn and blinds closed, but windows slightly open

 

· Do not place tin foil over your windows as the room temperature will rise

 

· Keep electric lights off or turned down

 

· Take frequent cool baths or showers and use cool towels

 

· Remain in air conditioning either at home or at a cooling center (1-2 hours in air conditioning can prevent a person from becoming ill)

 

· Wear loose clothing

 

· Do not eat heavy meals (eat small meals and eat more often)

 

· Avoid using cooking ovens

 

· Avoid using salt tablets unless directed to do so by a physician

 

· If you are taking medications, check with your pharmacist or your doctor on any side effects that heat may contribute to

 

· Check on family members, friends and neighbors

 

· Take the heat seriously; do not ignore danger signs like nausea, dizziness and fatigue

 

 

If you or anyone you know needs medical attention, call 911 or the local Police Department immediately.

 

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Redistricting Proposal Booted Off Ballot

Opponents of a voter referendum that would change the way Illinois builds its political boundaries win a round on the ongoing tug of war. Cook County Judge Diane Larsen ruled the November referendum is unconstitutional and booted it from the ballot. The Independent Map Amendment is expected to appeal the decision to the Illinois Supreme Court. The Independent Map Amendment has called for creation of an 11-member commission to oversee drawing of political boundaries. Governor Rauner expressed his disappointment in a statement.
“Today's ruling is a harsh reminder that the political system in Illinois is in need of major reforms. I hope the decision to deny voters the chance to consider the Independent Map redistricting referendum is appealed and reversed.
“Independent redistricting is badly needed in our state. A stunning two-thirds of incumbents will be running unopposed in November. That’s certainly not because the politicians in charge are doing such a good job in Springfield. It means the system is broken.
“Legislators in power could have placed the Independent Maps referendum directly on the ballot and avoided this court decision. Instead, they chose to play politics in an effort to protect their own power.
“That is wrong.
“We have it backwards in Illinois. Voters should be able to choose their elected officials through an independently-drawn map that ensures competitive elections. Instead, we have politicians choosing their voters, putting politics ahead of people.
“Independent Maps has strong support from both Democrats and Republicans. It has strong support from non-partisan good government groups. So this ruling is a definitely a setback for the people of Illinois.
“If this decision remains in place, it will prove that we need to put political reform at the top of our legislative agenda. We need to fix our broken political system to ensure taxpayers win instead of the insiders.”

 

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IEMA Issues Grants


Grants will help 120 cities, counties prepare for emergencies

 

SPRINGFIELD – Grants totaling $4 million awarded by the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) will help 120 accredited city and county emergency management agencies throughout Illinois support local disaster preparedness and response efforts.

 

“Every emergency begins and ends at the local level, and local emergency management agencies are key components of that response and recovery,” said IEMA Director James K. Joseph. “These grants will allow them to continue efforts to ensure the safety of the residents in the communities and counties they serve.”

 

The Emergency Management Performance Grants (EMPG) are funded through a grant IEMA receives from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).  The grants, which are awarded annually, can be used for day-to-day operations of local emergency preparedness and response programs. Award amounts were determined by a base amount plus population-based formula prescribed by administrative rule. 

 

County and municipal emergency management agencies receiving the grants include:

 

EMA

FFY 16 Allocation

 

EMA

FFY 16 Allocation

Adams County

27,550.17

 

Clay County

14,840.00

Alexander County

11,610.00

 

Clinton County

21,767.43

Aurora, City of

53,328.46

 

Coles County

18,168.75

Bond County

2,317.23

 

Cook County

447,235.69

Boone County

25,000.24

 

Crawford County

7,244.66

Bureau County

21,218.73

 

Cumberland County

8,891.00

Calhoun County

4,739.62

 

De Kalb County

35,050.74

Carbondale, City of

19,429.97

 

Des Plaines, City of

25,827.82

Carroll County

17,357.59

 

De Witt County

17,588.98

Centralia, City of

5,493.41

 

Douglas County

18,262.82

Champaign County

53,955.57

 

Du Page County

157,969.75

Chicago, City of

545,594.03

 

Du Quoin, City of

15,529.02

Christian County

18,157.72

 

East St. Louis, City of

19,647.54

Clark County

17,544.42

 

Edgar County

17,986.11

Effingham, City of

16,754.70

 

Mc Lean County

47,745.54

Effingham County

18,643.97

 

Menard County

16,829.00

Elmhurst, City of

20,227.36

 

Mercer County

17,563.94

Evanston, City of

29,005.26

 

Metropolis, City of

15,613.37

Fairview Heights, City of

8,457.83

 

Monroe County

20,820.43

Fayette County

18,688.51

 

Montgomery County

20,258.12

Flora, City of

7,568.32

 

Morgan County

21,330.88

Ford County

7,289.40

 

Moultrie County

17,250.97

Franklin County

22,121.97

 

Mt. Vernon, City of

17,335.90

Fulton County

20,590.63

     
 

...

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