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    The City of Kewanee is pleased to announce that Troy Ainley has been named as the City’s next Chief of Police.  Ainley began his service with the City in 1993 in the Fire Department, moving to the Police Department in 1997.  In addition to his current service as a detective, Ainley has served the department in patrol, as a D.A.R.E. officer, as a member of the Black Hawk Area Task Force, and as a member of the Emergency Response Team.

    Troy commented that he looks forward to this new challenge, and working with the dedicated employees of the police department to provide professional services to the residents and businesses of the City of Kewanee.

     

    Ainley will assume the chief position in June following the retirement of Chief Jim Dison. Jim Dison has served as Chief for 13 years, and has been with the department for almost 32 years.


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  • Quarter Madness returns on Friday with the event to be held at the Elks Club in downtown Kewanee.

    The event has grown in popularity over the last several years and provides an opportunity for players to win prizes by bidding quarters at each turn along the way.

    This will be the sixth annual Quarter Madness event and Committee member Carrie Boelens says the proceeds will be used in the community…

    Paddles are purchased and then the bidding takes place from there and as Ms.  Boelens explains, there are different options available for players and she notes that if you’ve never played before, don’t worry, you’ll catch on quick…

    Doors will open at 5:30 Friday evening a the Elks Club with a LaGondola style dinner available until supplies run out.

    The event begins at 7 and usually lasts a couple of hours.

    Committee member Dianne Packee says that once again this year, lots of great prizes are on the docket…


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  • State lawmakers introduced legislation Wednesdaythat would end marijuana prohibition in Illinois and establish a system in which marijuana is regulated and taxed for adult use.

    The Senate bill, SB 316, is sponsored by Senate Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Heather Steans (D-Chicago), while the House version, HB 2353, was presented by Rep. Kelly Cassidy (D-Chicago). Each would make it legal for adults 21 and older to possess, grow, and purchase limited amounts of marijuana. The state would license and regulate businesses to cultivate, process, test, and sell marijuana to adults, and it would create and enforce strict health and safety regulations, such as testing and labeling requirements and restrictions on marketing.

    “Marijuana prohibition is a quagmire that creates far more problems than it prevents,” Cassidy said. “Several states have adopted sensible alternatives to prohibition, and it is time for Illinois to develop its own exit strategy. Regulating marijuana and removing the criminal element from marijuana production and sales will make our communities safer.”
    The bills propose taxing marijuana at a rate of $50 per ounce at the wholesale level, and retail sales would be subject to the state’s standard 6.25% sales tax. Based on current usage rates and the market price of marijuana being sold for adults’ use in Colorado, the Marijuana Policy Project estimates regulated marijuana sales could generate between $349 million and $699 million per year in new revenue for Illinois.

    “Right now, all the money being spent on marijuana is going into the pockets of criminals and cartels,” Steans said. “In a regulated system, the money would go into the cash registers of licensed, taxpaying businesses. It would generate hundreds of millions of dollars per year in new revenue for our state. Prohibition is a financial hole in the ground, and we should stop throwing taxpayer dollars into it.”

    Eight states have enacted laws regulating and taxing marijuana for adult use. A February Quinnipiac University poll found 59% of U.S. voters think marijuana should be made legal. Polls conducted by the Pew Research Center and Gallup last October found support at 57% and 60%, respectively.

    “People are fed up with laws that punish adults for using a substance that is far less harmful than alcohol,” said Chris Lindsey, senior legislative counsel for the Marijuana Policy Project. “The time is right for the Illinois General Assembly to re-examine marijuana prohibition and consider the potential benefits of a thoughtfully crafted regulatory system. The sky has not fallen in the eight states that have made marijuana legal for adults. It’s time for Illinois to move past prohibition and stop missing out on the jobs and revenue other states are already getting.”


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  • The City of Kewanee’s Planning Commission will meet in City Hall, Council Chambers at 401 E. Third Street at 7:00 o’clock this evening. There are two petitions upon which a hearing will be conducted. 

    1:  150 E South St Suite J, Keith Rentschler, requesting a special use permit to serve alcohol by the drink.

    2:  150 E South St Suite D, Lalit Patel, requesting a special use permit to sell packaged liquor.


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  • Carrie Boelens and Dianne Packee talk about Quarter Madness


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  • Local service providers feeling the sting of the ongoing state budget stalemate. Downstate’s Mercer County Family Crisis Center has a limited budget, but is currently owed more than $100,000 from the state says the agency’s Marla Reynolds….

    The center offers services to child abuse and domestic violence victims. Last week, Illinois Comptroller Susana Mendoza announced the state’s bill backlog hit a record high of $12.8 billion. 


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  • Illinois continues to be a good location for the wine industry. John Mital (mee-tall) has a family operation just south of Quad Cities, called Creekside Vineyards & Winery.

    Creekside’s Preemption location has been in operation for three years. Also, Creekside has many retailers they do business with, plus Mital says they travel to farmers markets during spring and summer.


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