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Shared Parenting Bill Proposed in Illinois Statehouse

The Illinois Fathers for Equality is a group that is pushing for a new bill in the state house called the Shared Parenting Bill. The Shared Parenting Bill, if passed, would require judges ruling in custody cases to issue a written statement explaining why they chose not to give the parents a 50-50 spilt in custody of children following a divorce. Our Kim Howard has more... 

 

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OSF Saint Luke to Celebrate 100th Anniversary with Retiree Luncheon

OSF Saint Luke Medical Center is putting out the call for former employees of OSF Saint Luke Medical Center as well as those who worked at Kewanee Hospital to come out for the 100th Anniversary luncheon in April at OSF. The luncheon is intended to honor those who have served our community in the health care field over the past 100 years with historical displays, speakers and great food. Carrie Boelens from OSF Saint Luke Medical Center put out the call for hospital retirees on Monday's edition of Tuned In... 

The OSF Saint Luke Medical Center 100 year annniversary luncheon is scheduled for April 17th from 11 Am to 1 Pm. Call Nancy at 309-852-7822 if you are a former employee who would like to RSVP. 

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People to People Podcast State Representative Dan Swanson

State Representative Dan Swanson has been outspoken in his opposition to the raising of the minimum wage in Illinois. Representative Swanson joins us on People to People today to discuss why he opposed the bill which Governor Pritzker is expected to sign this week and what the impact of the minimum wage increase may be in our area.

Representative Swanson also spoke about what he hopes to hear in Governor Pritzker's budget address on Wednesday and about the proposed voluntary milage tax. You can hear our complete People to People podcast interview with Representative Dan Swanson below for streaming or downliad to listen later. 

 

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Henry County Health Department to Host Food Manager Certification Course in March

The Henry and Stark County Health Department will host a Food Manager Certification Course on March 18th and 19th. The Food Manager Certification Course is aimed at helping those in the food management industry to know and understand requirements of the Illinois Department of Public Health Food Code. This includes rules and regulations related to preventing food borne disease, food protection, cleaning and sanitization of equipment, personal hygiene, building construction, public health codes, insect and rodent control and personnel training. The cost to attend the Food Manager Certification Course is $140.00 for the two day class with an additional textbook available for $30.00. Classes will be held at the offices of the Henry and Stark County Health Department located at 4424 US Highway 34 in Kewanee. Limited number of registrations available. Contact the Health Department at 309-852-0197 for more information or to reserve your registration. 

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Black Hawk College Vet Tech and Surgical Tech Applications Being Accepted Now

Black Hawk College is accepting applications for a pair of popular degree programs. According to a release from Black Hawk College, applications are now being accepted for Associates Degree programs in Veterinary Technology and Surgical Technology. Both programs get underway in the fall with the Veterinary Technology program being hosted on the Black Hawk  College East Campus this fall. Vet Techs work with animals under the direction of Veterinarians in clinics and in animal hospitals. Surgical Technology Associates assist with surgeries by preparing surgical instruments, setting up the operating room prior to a surgery and assisting in the care of patients undergoing surgery. Surgery Tech classes are held at the Quad Cities campus of Black Hawk College. If you are interested in becoming a Vet Tech or a Surgical Tech you must apply with Black Hawk College by March 1st for classes beginning in the fall. Go to BHC.edu to put in your application. 

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Pension Consolidation or Eliminating Pension Altogether Two Proposals for Illinois Pension Debt

Cities across Illinois may move away from a localized pension system to a consolidated pension system across several cities if new proposals in Springfield are any indication. As Illinois lawmakers search for ways to fix the broken pension system in Illinois, one idea that seems to have some support is allowing several cities in geographically connected areas to consolidate pensions into one fund as a way to help each city not to default or continue to fall behind on pension payments. That said, one Illinois lawmaker believes abandoning pensions altogether is the only solution. More from our Greg Bishop. 

 

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Questions Abound Ahead of Governor Pritzker Budget Address Wednesday

Governor J.B Pritzker has a $3.2 Billion dollar hole in his budget in Illinois and most experts agree that sports gambling and legalized marijuana will not provide enough revenue to the state of Illinois to fill that hole. So what will the Governor propose on Wednesday to deal with the massive budget deficit? An increase in service taxes? Taxing retirement income? Taxing the richest Illinois residents? These are some of the ideas being mentioned ahead of the Governor's speech before both chambers of the Illinois legislature on Wednesday. Our Greg Bishop has more on what ideas appear viable and which ones are being dismissed. 

 

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Licensed Cannabis Dispensaries Want Moratorium on New Licenses in Illinois

Licensed cannabis dispensaries in Illinois want the state of Illinois want a moratorium on licenses for new dispensaries. The call for what some have called a protectionist policy for those companies that have spent millions to get off the ground in the medical marijuana industry in Illinois, comes as calls to legalize recreational marijuana gain more acceptance in Springfield. A moratorium on licenses for companies currently cultivating marijuana would likely be a financial boon to the 21 companies currently licensed to grow marijuana. Our Cole Lauterbach has more... 

 

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Rep Bost Wants People to Remember Differences Between Hemp and Marijuana

With hemp legalized as part of a new Farm Bill, Southern Illinois Congressman Mike Bost says it will be important to make sure law enforcement across the nation realizes the difference between hemp and cannabis.

Bost notes he is still not in favor of legalization of cannabis for recreational purposes, but recognizes there may be medical benefits, especially for veterans suffering from PTSD. 

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Kewanee Area Arts Council Interview Tim Black Talks Dinner Theater This Weekend

The Kewanee Area Arts Council Dinner Theater is set for this Friday, Saturday and Sunday afternoon. Three one act plays and Dinner will be part of the event at the Henry County Senior Citizens Center in Kewanee. Tickets are $15.00 each and include dinner from La Gondola, treats from the Senior Center and, of course, the plays. Events get underway at 6 Pm with dinner and showtime at 7 Pm on Friday and Saturday. The Sunday matinee begins at 2 Pm but does not include dinner. Tim Black from te Kewanee Area Arts Council joined us on Monday morning to put out the call for more folks to come out and support the arts in Kewanee. 

 

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Tuned In Carrie Boelens and Amy Hecker from OSF Saint Luke Medical Center

Carrie Boelens and Amy Hecker from OSF Saint Luke Medical Center joined us on Tuned In on Monday to talk about the latest events with OSF Saint Luke Medical Center. Amy Hecker was on hand to talk about Diabetes and the latest treatments and modern technology in the ongoing evolution of treatments of Diabetes. Carrie meanwhile talked about podiatry services at OSF and the upcoming 100 years celebration in which everyone who has ever worked for OSF and Kewanee Hospital is invited to attend. 

 

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Representative Dan Swanson Talks About First Congregational Church Speech for Black History Month

Representative Dan Swanson was in Kewanee on Sunday at First Congregational Church for the Community Celebration of Black History Month. Mr Swanson gave a speech and stayed afterward to talk with constituents who turned out for the remarkable event celebrating February as Black History Month. We caught up with Representative Swanson on Monday asked him about his speech and the gathering at the church. 

Our full interview with Representative Dan Swanson talking about the minimum wage hike, Governor Pritzker's upcoming budget address and the Milage Tax will air tomorrow on our People to People Program at 9:35 Am. 

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People to People President's Day with the Secret Lives of US Presidents Author Cormac O'Brien

Author Cormac O'Brien has made a career of digging up the secrets of U.S Presidents and sharing them with readers since 2002 and he has never stopped. With each new President, a new edition of Cormac's book gets ready to roll with the deepest, darkest and most humorous secrets of U.S Presidents. Cormac O'Brien joined WKEI for our People to People President's Day broadcast. 

 

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Illinois State Rep Proposing Voluntary Milage Tax

A Chicago area State Representative wants to introduce a voluntary milage tax. A new bill proposed by Democratic lawmaker Marcus Evans would create a pilot program wherein residents could voluntary pay a per mile tax of 2.1 cents per mile and have the 19 cent per gallon fuel tax waived. Our Cole Lauterbach has more from Springfield. 

 

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New Bill Aimed at House Speaker Roles

State Representative Margo McDermed is introducing a bill aimed directly at House Speaker Michael Madigan. HB-878 would make it against House Rules for a serving House Speaker to also be the chairman of his affilated party. Michael Madigan currently holds both the role of House Speaker and the chairmanship of the Illinois Democratic Party. Our Greg Bishop has more... 

 

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Local Health Departments Adjusting to New Food Service Inspection Guidelines

Health Department's across the state of Illinois are beginning to get used to new Food Service Inspection Guidelines that became law at the beginning of 2019. The Illinois Department of Health were in charge of writing the new guidelines which are intended to bring Illinois food inspection standards in line with the rest of the country. Our Scot Bertram explains... 

 

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Lincoln and Kennedy Facts Versus Fiction at Lincoln Museum

Do you remember hearing about all the strange coincidences between President’s Lincoln and Kennedy? From them both being a captain of a boat to the length of their names, they both had 4 children, the list goes on and on - but is it all true or mostly urban legend? The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library will host an event on Tuesday to separate the truth from myth says Library Director Allen Lowe.

Tickets start at just $5. Meanwhile, in honor of President's Day today, our guest will be Presidential Historian and author of The Secret Lives of Presidents, Cormac O'Brien. Mr. O'Brien will join us on People to People at 9:35 on WKEI. 

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Illinois National Guard Has New Leadership

The Illinois Nation Guard has a new leader. Richard Neely has been promoted from Brigadier General to Adjutant General. Neely has almost 30 years of military experience. He wants the National Guard to be ready to deploy war both on physical battlefield and in cyber space.

Neely plans a sharp focus on keeping recruitment numbers up.

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Black History Month Celebrated at First Congregational Church in Kewanee

Citizens and community leaders came together on Sunday for a celebration of Black History Month in Kewanee. Many gathered at First Congregational Church to listen to speakers, watch presentations and listen to our local High School choirs sing in honor of Black History Month. Among the speakers were Henry County Board Chairman Marshall Jones who discussed the history of Black History Month. 

Representative Dan Swanson also spoke yet Sunday's Celebration and told the story of the first Black State Representative in Illinois. 

 

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Former Princeville Man Among Those Killed in Aurora Shooting

Clayton Parks was just 32 years old when he was among those murdered at the Mueller Water Products Plant in Aurora, Illinois. Parks was living in Elgin, Illinois at the time of his death but grew up in Princeville and attended Princeville High School, he graduated from there in 2004 and went onto a degree from Northern, Illinois. Parks was married with a baby boy at home. Aurora, Illinois Police Chief Kristen Ziman informed the media of the names of those killed on Friday. 

 

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Tuned In Community Black History Month Celebration Sunday February 17th

Etta La Flora is a member of the Kewanee Community Black History Month Committee. Etta, along with committee members Marshall Jones, Anita Blanks, Thelma McCloud-Shaw and technical assistant Bill Jordan were part of the planning for the Sunday, February 17th celebration of Black History Month in Kewanee. The Community Black History Month Celebration will be held at First Congregational Church in Kewanee, beginning at 2 Pm, on Sunday, February 17th. Etta La Flora was our guest on Friday on Tuned In on WKEI. Stream or download the interview below... 

 

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Kewanee School District 229 Board of Education Meeting February 20th

Kewanee Board of Education President Dan Nolan has announced that the next Kewanee Board of Education Meeting has been moved back one day. The meeting had been schedule for February 19th at 6:15 Pm with Open Session at 7:30 Pm. Now, the meeting will take place on February 20th at 6:15 Pm with the Open Session to follow at 7:30 Pm. The meeting will take place at the Kewanee School District Office located at 1001 Main Street. 

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Kewanee Transfer Station and City Offices Closed on Monday President's Day

The Kewanee Transfer Station will be closed on Monday in observance of President's Day. Many other statewide offices will also be closed including the Kewanee Post Office however, the Kewanee Public Library will be open on Monday. As for the City of Kewanee, City Hall offices will be closed and will re-open on Tuesday. There will be no changes to the trash or recycling pick up next week. 

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Alita Battle Angel Opens in Kewanee This Weekend

Alita Battle Angel opens in Kewanee this weekend at the Wanee Cinemas. Alital Battle Angel stars newcomer Rosa Salazar as Alita, a robot warrior brought back to life by a scientist, played by Academy Award winner Christoph Walz, who raises her like a teenage girl until her extraordinary powers come to the attention of the dangerous Vector (Mahershala Ali) and Alita is forced to fight for her life and the lives of those she cares for. Alita Battle Angel is based on a Japanese Manga or comic book created by Yukita Kushiro in 1990. The manga has been a dream project of director James Cameron for years and now comes to the big screen produced by Cameron with director Robert Rodriguez realizing Cameron and Kushiro's vision on the big screen. The film is receiving slightly mixed reviews from critics with a rating of 61% positive at RottenTomatoes though the film has received wide acclaim for its wild, Manga inspired visuals. The film opens this weekend at the Wanee Cinemas in Kewanee. 

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People to People Jeff Reinkemeyer and Paul Copleman from Avangrid Renewables

Jeff Reinkemeyer and Paul Copleman from Avangrid joined WKEI to talk about their Wind Turbine project in Burns Township. Much has been said about the project which is the subject of an appeal by residents of Burns Township who want the Henry County Board to rescind their approval of the project. Avangrid, for their part, states that the project has been in the works since 2007 and that while they respect the concerns of the residents of Burns Township who are opposed to the project, they have done their due diligence and gone through the approval process on the project on more than one occasion. 

You can hear our complete interview with Jeff Reinkemeyer and Paul Copleman with Avangrid below. Stream or download the interview below... 

 

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