Local News Archives for 2016-08

"Illinois State Board of Elections Chief" makes appearance on CBS Late Show

The Illinois State Board of Elections recent bout with a hacker got some national exposure Tuesday evening. CBS Late Show host Stephen Colbert introduced the Chairman of the Board, but he didn't exactly look like he was ready for an Illinois summer. In fact, it wasn't Charles Scholz, but instead someone with a Russian accent a much different name.....

Chairman "Johnny Cowboy" had some less than helpful advice to avoid hacking in general...

The FBI is investigating the hack of the personal records of roughly 200,000 Illinois voters. 

Federal drone use rules now in effect

The skies above you could be increasingly filled with drones. The Federal Aviation Administration's rules governing drone use went into effect this week, which will require users to obtain a remote pilot certificate. Chad Colby with Colby Ag Tech has weaved through the F-A-A's Unmanned Aerial Systems process;

The F-A-A predicts as many as 600-thousand drones could be put to use over the next year. If you're interested in learning more, go to know-before-you-fly-dot-org.

State Park Parking Could be a Challenge

It’s been a record wet month in the state and that comes with some costs, including limiting some parking and access to the states most popular park. Starved Rock State Park is dealing with high water and with that comes restrictions says Natural Resources Spokesman Chris Young.

If you have reservations at the lodge or are expected there for an event
access won’t be limited.

Rain Kept Falling This Month

Farmers and back yard gardeners can always tell you if the weather has been wetter than normal. But this year everyone should be able to identify that the state has seen more rain than average. State Climatologist Jim Angel says that we’ve just passed through the wettest July through August ever.

A dryer start to September would be welcome to farmers who are ready to start harvest. 

WKEI Open Line

Crime in the U.S. is discussed during the August 31 edition of the Open

LIne on WKEI

Robotic Surgery

The area of technology is accelerating at a rapid rate in many areas of modern living and that is certainly the case in the field of medicine.

Mr. Jeff Lingerfelt is the CEO at Hammond Henry Hospital in Geneseo and he says the area of robotic surgery is in the early stages but will soon become more common at many hospitals including Hammond Henry…

While it might seem to some that this idea is a bit far-fetched, the results of robotic surgery to this point have for the most part been very impressive…

Missing Person Alert

Search In-Progress with Bureau County Sheriff?s Office and Ladd P.D.
SPRING VALLEY, IL ? Illinois State Police (ISP) Zone 3 Investigations is
seeking the public?s assistance with locating Deborah K. Dewey, white
female, age 62, glasses, gray hair, 5?05?, 150 lbs.  Dewey was last seen
on August 22, 2016, in Spring Valley, Illinois.
On August 29, 2016, Dewey?s unlocked vehicle, a gray 2007 Buick LaCrosse,
was located at the TA Truck Stop on Illinois Route 47 just north of I-80.
ISP Intelligence Support Unit, ISP Digital Crimes Unit, STIC, ISP Air
Operations, ISP Crime Scene Services, ISP FOID Bureau, ISP Gaming, ISP
District 5, ISP District 15, ISP District 17, Illinois Conservation
Police, Bureau County Sheriff, Ladd Police Department, and Kane County
Sheriff's bloodhound are assisting in the investigation.
Anyone with information on the whereabouts of Dewey is encouraged to
contact ISP District 17 Headquarters at (815) 224-1171.


The Kewanee School District and the Kewanee Park District continue their long standing agreement for the use of Park District facilities and some of the various sports programs offered at Kewanee High School.

Many people in the community are aware of the changes taking place at Northeast Park and Kewanee Supt of Schools Dr. Chris Sullens says the Kewanee Boilergirls are taking advantage of the new tennis courts at Northeast…

Kewanee High School this year is fielding a soccer team for the first time and while the improvements at Northeast call for some new soccer fields, those won’t be available until next year meaning the Boiler Soccer team will play all their games on the road this year.

Dr. Sullens says those new soccer fields at Northeast will be a major asset to their soccer program in time…

Defensive Driving Course To Be Held

The Bureau, Henry, and Stark County Farm Bureaus will be hosting a Defensive Driving Course on Thursday and Friday, September 1-2 at the Black Hawk College Community Education Center in Kewanee at 404 East Third Street, from 10 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.  Both days must be attended to receive the certification.  The registration fee of $30 covers course materials and lunch for both days.


The course is open to people 55 and older who are auto policy holders.  Those completing the course are eligible for a discount on their auto insurance.  Check with your agent to clarify the amount of discount that will apply. 


This program was developed by the National Safety Council and will be taught by safety specialist, Doug Sommer, Pekin, Illinois.  The course is very informative, entertaining and relevant to today’s driving environment and standards.  An examination is not required to complete the course or receive certification.


Reservations are required.  Class size is limited.  Call the Henry County Farm Bureau at (309) 937-2411 to make your reservation or for more information.


Bustos, Durbin Acquire Airport Funding


ROCKFORD, IL - Today, Congresswoman Cheri Bustos (IL-17) and U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced $455,869 in federal funding from the U.S. Department of Transportation for the Chicago Rockford International Airport. These funds will be used for the construction of a 30,000 square yard cargo apron to provide aircraft parking to meet the demand of existing users of the airport. The grant will also provide funding to reimburse the apron construction. This is phase 10 of a 10 phase project.


“The Chicago Rockford International Airport is a critically important part of our regional transportation network and our local economy which is why I’m so proud to announce this investment in Rockford’s future,” said Congresswoman Cheri Bustos. “By delivering these federal dollars, we’re making necessary improvements to our infrastructure system that will make Rockford a better place to live, work and raise a family.”


“Northern Illinois’ economic growth depends on our airports, and Chicago Rockford International Airport is no exception. Today’s funding will help create jobs and ensure that RFD can keep up with air travel demands,” said Durbin. “With continued federal investment, we can guarantee that Rockford’s airport will continue to provide reliable air service and create new economic opportunities for local residents.”


Backpack Safety

Backpacks are a common item for school children and while they are very popular, they can also lead to injuries if not properly adjusted.

Jennifer Oetzel is an Occupational Therapist at OSF St Luke Medical Center in Kewanee and she cites some statistics to back up just how popular those backpacks have become…

Chad Bowcott is also an Occupational Therapist at OSF and he says that backpacks that are loaded too heavy can be a real problem…

Bowcott adds that there are some recommended methods for properly loading those school backpacks…

Ms. Oetzel adds that there are some recommended ways to wear the backpack…

Harvest weather looks good

The 2016 growing season has been pretty good, weather-wise, here in Illinois. After early season fears of a hot, dry summer the La Nina failed to develop and we ended up with near record wet weather in July and August

That’s Eric Schmidt of EJS weather, based in Newton, Illinois. Schmidt says the coming Labor Day weekend looks dry and mild, then a little more rain the first week or so of September followed by a pretty good chance of dryer, nearly ideal harvest weather from mid September through October.

Eric Schmidt of EJS weather

Crops Continue to Look Good

Harvest has begun for some farmers in the state. Reports have combines rolling from southern Illinois to the central part of the state around Decatur and over to Rantoul. So it’s easy to figure that the crop is maturing ahead of normal. USDA Crop Statistician Mark Schleusener says that overall crops in the field continue to look good.

As harvest slowly starts around the state it’s always a good time to remember that means slow moving equipment will be on the roadways. 

Rauner celebrates NPS centennial

Governor Bruce Rauner is celebrating the National Park Sevice's 100th anniversary. While Illinois may not have the sprawling national parks seen out west, he says the Land of Lincoln has plenty to be proud of....

Rauner has been a long time National Park enthusiast since his first hiking trip to Yellowstone at the age of 14. 

Rail consolidation moves forward in Springfield

One of the great frustrations for people who do business in the Capital City or simply go there as a tourist, is being stopped by Downtown trains. Efforts to move rail traffic seven blocks further south are moving ahead with the dedication of a $20.8 million rail underpass. Senator Dick Durbin says it's a classic example of the Illinois Congressional Delegation working together, regardless of party, for the state's transportation needs..

Federal, state and local officials continue efforts to create more rail underpasses and bring high speed rail to the edge of Springfield's Downtown area.

Annawan Mayor On PTP

Annawan Mayor Tim Wise is the guest for the August 30 edition of People to People on WKEI

WKEI Open Line

Colin Kaepernick is discussed during the August 30 edition of the Open LIne on WKEI

Water Shut Off In Kewanee on Wednesday


Effective Wednesday 8/31/16, the City of Kewanee Water Department is planning a water shut off with a boil order to follow.  Areas affected will include 5th Avenue from Prospect to Rose Streets, Prairie and Columbus Avenues, and Rose Street from Beach Avenue to Washington Street.


Work is expected to begin at 8:00 a.m. and will be worked on throughout the day.  Residents are asked to avoid this area if possible, and to take caution if driving near the work zone areas.


Any residents, whose water has been shut off during this repair, will be under a boil order for 48 – 72 hours following the restoration of water service.

Residents in these areas may experience low pressure, rusty water, or no water.  If the water has been turned off, take precautions when using water until the water runs clean.  Only flush the system by running cold water, running hot water may draw rust into the water heater.  

Regional Media-Virden Broadcasting set to “Jack Up” Quad Cities Radio!

Regional Media will switch its signal in the Quad City market to bring the highly popular “JACK” radio format beginning on September 1, 2016.

WYEC, which will become KQCJ, at 93.9 on the FM dial, serves Peoria to Eldridge with its majority listenership in the Quad Cities region has been planning a major change for months!

JACK FM is the most successful radio programming approach in North America. It offers upbeat and unconventional “Playing What We Want” branding. The JACK FM Adult Hits format presents an energizing presentation of hit songs from the late 1960s through the 2000s that has attracted a significant following, reaching more than 20 million listeners weekly.

”Regional Media is excited to launch the highly successful JACK format in the Quad Cities,” commented President and CEO Fletcher M. Ford  “Our signal, at 93.9, will carry the distinctive sound of JACK FM to the entire Quad Cities and surrounding regions, and the unique playlist and music mix is perfectly suited to our midwest lifestyle. Both listeners and advertisers will love the new JACK FM at 93.9 on the FM dial.”

The new Jack FM will continue in Regional Media's legacy of dedication to local high schools programming, local and national news, and local interviews.

“We are just simply JACKED to the max, to launch the new JACK FM format on 93.9. The music and the energy that it brings to the table will literally change the Quad Cities!”, said Jason Gilbraith, Sr. Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Regional Media.

“The JACK FM format is unlike anything in the Quad Cities market,” said Regional Media Operations Manager Sean Patrick. “I am very excited to be part of bringing JACK FM to the Quad Cities because I know people will love it.”

Regional Media-Virden Broadcasting is an Iowa based locally owned company that owns and operates multiple media outlets in Iowa and Illinois.

For more infomation on Regional Media visit www.RegionalMedia.info

Salvation Army School Supply Distribution

The recent school supply distribution through the Kewanee Salvation Army was a resounding success.

Linda Bolls is the Director of the Salvation Army in Kewanee and she says it was almost like Christmas in August for some of the younger students…

The backpacks were donated by a local entity and proved to be very much appreciated by the children and their families.

Ms. Bolls says the reaction by the young girl and others like her was simply incredible…

Early Dismissal Thursday at Wethersfield

On Thursday, September 1 Wethersfield will be running a 1:45 Dismissal Schedule in order to host a Memorial Program for long-time teacher Roger Mann who passed away over the weekend.  The Memorial Program will begin at 2:30pm in the High School Gym.  Community members, friends, former students, parents, current students, and staff members are invited to attend the Memorial Program.


Also, the location for the High School Volleyball Game that evening against Rockridge has been moved to Moss Gym with freshman game still starting at 5:00pm.


Hog Festival Committee Meets Tonight


Hog Capital Barbecue, Inc. Meeting Agenda

Meeting Date: Tuesday, August 30, 2016 @ 7 p.m.


Acceptance of and place on file Secretary’s Report

Visitors – Dave Clarke and the 2016 volunteer list


Unfinished Business

1. Gustafson quilt / helicopter ride help

2.    Stampede’s 40th year this year – committee members to the stage please

3.    Vice chairpersons – any questions, comments or updates on the things you oversee

4.    Freebies in souvenir room

5.    Bathroom re-do project – Thank you Bill for hooking up new vanity!


New Business

1.    Discussion of moving electrical service to front of building


LAST CHANCE! Reports/Questions/Comments/Other Business from Anyone regarding ANYTHING Hog Days


Motion to adjourn


FYI:  *Don’t forget, Ministerial Appreciation Luncheon this Thursday, 9/1, 12 noon under the big tent


        *Next regularly scheduled meeting is Tuesday, September 13th, 2016 @ 7 p.m. Please come prepared

          to not only go over what went right but also to pick apart what went wrong and start our “to do” list

          for making what went wrong right for 2017!

Local Red Cross Helps in Louisiana


MOLINE, IL, August 29, 2016 – The American Red Cross remains on the ground in Louisiana, with volunteers across nearly half of the state helping the thousands of people who have lost everything they own in the devastating flooding there.


“The situation in Louisiana remains critical,” said Lyn Hruska, Chief Executive Officer, American Red Cross Central and Southern Illinois Region. “The Red Cross response is really just getting underway as we will be in Louisiana to help people recover in the weeks and months to come. We ask people to please consider making a financial donation to the Red Cross today to support the people of Louisiana.”


Currently there are 33 volunteers from the Central and Southern Illinois Region assisting with the Red Cross relief effort in Louisiana. Many of the volunteers are serving on location, while others are assisting virtually staffing call centers and doing casework. In addition to the volunteers, two staff members from the region are on the ground in Louisiana. Alyssa Pollock, Regional Disaster Officer and Amber Wood, Executive Director for the American Red Cross Serving the Quad Cities and West Central Illinois are serving in leadership roles as part of the Red Cross relief operation.


More than 90 Red Cross response vehicles are fanning through affected neighborhoods to distribute food, water and relief supplies. Disaster mental health and health services volunteers are providing emotional support and helping to replace things like lost eyeglasses, wheelchairs and medications.


As of August 26, more than 2,500 Red Crossers have provided the following services:

·         Served more than 466,000 meals and snacks.

·         Distributed more than 210,000 relief items.

·         Provided more than 55,000 overnight stays in emergency shelters.

·         Handled nearly 27,000 calls from people seeking information and help.

·         Provided 12,000 health services and emotional support contacts.

·         Mobilized four kitchens.


Each day, the Red Cross is able to get into more and more neighborhoods, and volunteers are working tirelessly to provide assistance. In some areas, residents are still experiencing flooding, while other neighborhoods are facing the challenge of cleaning up. Where possible, the Red Cross is beginning to distribute food and relief supplies.


HOW TO HELP People can donate by visiting redcross.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS or texting the word LAFLOODS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. Donations enable the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recovery from these disasters.


BECOME A VOLUNTEER To join us, visit redcross.org today to learn more about volunteer opportunities and how to submit a volunteer application.


DOWNLOAD EMERGENCY APP People can download the free Red Cross Emergency App now to be ready in case of a disaster in their community. They can use the app’s “I’m Safe” button to connect with their loved ones. The Emergency App can be found in the app store for someone’s mobile device by searching for “American Red Cross” or by going to redcross.org/apps.


Impact of LA flooding on rural areas.

Two weeks ago we saw news of the massive flooding in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. No that the news crews are leaving, we talked to Carey Martin of the Louisiana Farm Bureau about the extent of the damage. He says the news covered Baton Rouge because it’s a major population center, but the actual flooding impacted most of south Louisiana including rural areas the size of Delaware.

But in addition to Baton Rouge, dozens of smaller communities had devastating flooding, and hundreds of thousands of acres of crop land went underwater, including rural homes, outbuildings and businesses. Martin says the total damage is still being assessed, but ag economists at LSU have issues some preliminary estimates of crop losses.

And that is for crop losses, not rural homes and businesses. Total losses from the flooding, urban and rural, are likely to run into the billions of dollars, much of that not covered by insurance.
The area produces rice, soybeans, corn, sugar cane and some cotton.
Martin says his own home had five feet of water, and his family is living on the second floor, expecting it to take months to arrange for repairs to the lower floor.

WKEI Open Line

Gas prices, the ACA and heroin are all discussed during the August 29 edition of the Open LIne on WKEI

OSF on Tuned IN

Radiology Director Emily Costenson is the guest


KPL Children's Story Time On Tuesday

Kewanee Public Library will once again host Chidren’s Story Time on Tuesday morning.

KPL Children’s Librarian Sara Billiet says the program begins at 11:30 and will last anywhere from 30-60 minutes…

Home Invasion Incident in Kewanee


At 10:33 p.m., August 25, 2016, the Kewanee Police Department received a report of a disturbance and a gunshot in the 1300 Block Lake Street.  Officers responded to the area and located an occupied residence that had been entered by two suspects.  Upon entering the residence the suspects encountered an occupant of the residence who then fired a warning shot causing the suspects to flee.


Officers canvassed the area and later took two individuals into custody.  As a result of the investigation, Airiel L. Mitchell-Watson, 20, Kewanee, was remanded to the custody of the Henry County Jail.  Mitchell-Watson has been formally charged with:  Home Invasion, Residential Burglary, Criminal Trespass to Residence/Person Present, Felony Escape, Obstructing Identification and Resisting Arrest. Bond for Mitchell-Watson was set at $300,000.00 (10% applies).


The incident remains under investigation with additional arrests possible. No additional information available at this time.



Truck Tax Due End of Month

Commercial semi-truck drivers and owners are reminded of the federal highway use tax which is due by the end of August.

Michael Devine with the IRS in St Louis says taking care of the tax is fairly easy…

Devine adds that most of the larger fleets are in general aware of the situation and this reminder is more for the independent driver…

City Council Info

Kewanee City Council voted last week to approve a resolution awarding the 2016 street maintenance program to Advanced Asphalt Company.

Mayor Steve Looney says the work should begin sometime next month…

Mayor Looney also notes that the Council passed an ordinance declaring certain vehicles and equipment as excess and no longer needed by the City…

ISP And Compliance

The tensions between police and certain members of society and different situations around the country has been well documented over the last several years.

Without question, there have been cases where the suspect or suspects in a given situation have been more at fault, and there have been other situations where some police officers have been more at fault.

Illinois State Police Trooper Jason Wilson from District 7 in East Moline says police do make mistakes at times, but he also says that if suspects would be more compliant, a lot of problems could be averted…

Trooper Wilson again emphasizes that if suspects will be compliant, they will get their day in court…

WKEI Open Line

The Illinois Map Amendment decision is discussed during the August 26 edition of People to People on WKEI


Congressman Rodney Davis weighs in on health insurance rate hikes

Health insurance rates might bring the New Year's blues in 2017 The new year will bring higher prices and fewer choices on the Illinois marketplace for families who buy their own health coverage. The Illinois Department of Insurance reports the average rate increase for a typical benchmark plan is 43 percent. Congressman Rodney Davis is concerned. The Taylorville Republican continues to express concerns about Obamacare otherwise known as the Affordable Care Act....

Davis, the husband of a cancer survivor, says he can relate to Illinois consumers....

Selection is a big issue, with only one company offering plans in an eight county area


Only one company will offer plans in eight counties of the state.

Fair Map Question Booted from November Ballot

The Illinois Supreme Court dealt the final blow for the effort to let voters decide if state legislative maps should be drawn by an independent commission. In a 4 – 3 decisions the court ruled that the Fair Maps question would not be allowed on the November ballot. The majority opinion stated that the measure didn’t fit the narrowly constructed requirements set forth by the constitution. A blistering dissent was written by Justice Robert Thomas saying at the outset, “The Illinois constitution is meant to prevent tyranny, not to enshrine it.”

Governor Bruce Rauner a long time supporter of the effort said in an emailed statement that “Fair maps create fair districts. The system is broken and controlled by career politicians. People leave when they cannot hold their politicians accountable.

This is the second time in two years that the effort to get this question on the ballot has failed.

Central Illinois Foodbank gets a heaping helping of Mac and Cheese

Central Illinois residents battling hunger will get a heaping helping of Mac and Cheese. Land O'Lakes, primarily known for their famous butter related products, is donating 40-thousand pounds of their Macaroni and Cheese to the Central Illinois Foodbank. It's part of Land O'Lakes First Run Program. Foodbank Executive Director Pam Molitoris says it's great to have a massive shipment of mac and cheese because of its mass appeal...

Central Illinois Foodbank serves 21 Illinois counties and distributes more than 9 million pounds of food a year. 

Candidate Allowed to Stay on Ballot in the 13th

District candidate David Gill can remain on the Nov. 8 ballot. The independent from Bloomington will face Republican incumbent Rodney Davis and Democrat Mark Wicklund of Decatur. Gill maintained the number of signatures required to get on the ballot is unconstitutional because it's too high in his view. The state board of elections booted him from the ballot after nearly 2700 petition signatures were tossed out. The Illinois Attorney General's office has not decided whether to appeal.

Public Expo



A four-day public expo in Bureau County showcasing the construction of a farm- based wetland designed for nutrient removal will be held on August 29–September 1, 2016, at Bonucci Farms outside of Princeton, Illinois. The event is organized by the Wetlands Initiative (TWI), the Illinois Land Improvement Contractors Association (ILICA), and other partners.


The free public event will feature installation of a small constructed wetland designed to capture nutrient runoff from tile drainage; on August 30 only, there will be talks on a variety of other on-farm practices related to nutrient loss reduction and pollinators. The event will also be a demonstration and exhibition of land improvement equipment. There is no admission charge, and everyone is welcome to attend, including landowners, farmers, agribusinesses, conservationists, planners, and the general public. Continuing education credits will be available for Certified Crop Advisers.


“This is the second constructed wetland that has been built for tile treatment in Bureau County,” said Dr. Jill Kostel, TWI’s senior environmental engineer. She is providing technical assistance to farmers on the practice, working with the Illinois Corn Growers Association on outreach, and collaborating with the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) on the wetland design. “People are encouraged to come watch the construction and ask questions at any time over the four days,” Kostel added.


The expo will be open from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. each day. Tuesday, August 30, will be a special Conservation Day with activities from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., including the following:

·        Speakers on topics that will include constructed wetlands, cover crops (Illinois Council on Best Management Practices), pollinator habitat (Jannifer Powelson, Stark County Soil & Water Conservation District), and USDA programs (Erika Turner, NRCS).

·        Food available for purchase.

·        A Rainfall Simulator Unit arranged by the Bureau County Soil & Water Conservation District to provide a visual demonstration of a storm event and how water moves over and into the soil.

·        Landowners can bring water samples from tile drainage, runoff, or streams for testing on Tuesday, if desired, by the Illinois Council on Best Management Practices (for instructions see www.illinoiscbmp.org/Water-Testing/).


On Tuesday Julie Armstrong, Executive Director of the Illinois Nutrient Research and Education Council, will give the lunchtime talk on current research on fertilizer use and nutrient loss reduction practices that optimize efficiency, ensure soil fertility, and address environmental concerns.


During the four-day expo, ILICA contractors will build a CP39 constructed wetland, which is designed to naturally capture and remove excess nutrients from tile drainage leaving farm fields. This wetland practice is available for reimbursement under the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) or the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) of the Farm Bill. Constructed wetlands are one of the practices recommended under the Illinois Nutrient Loss Reduction Strategy to help reach its reduction goals.


“Constructed wetlands are key players in nutrient loss reduction and additionally provide great wildlife habitat value on-farm. With the support of our Associates, ILICA is excited to partner with TWI to facilitate the installation of this end-of-pipe practice, demonstrating its applicability as a best management practice (BMP) in Illinois,” said Ryan Arch, ILICA’s Executive Director. “It’s great to see producers like Bonucci Farms taking steps to address Illinois’ nutrient loss reduction goals, and ILICA is pleased to be able to help contribute to their efforts.”


The expo will highlight how constructed wetlands can get results while taking up little land. “These wetlands are small and placed alongside or within drainage ways, in areas of less-productive farmland,” said Kostel. “The wetland they’ll be building at the expo is 4.8 acres in size including the surrounding pollinator habitat buffer. This practice has been shown to be highly effective at removing nutrients, putting your marginal land to work for you for many years with very little maintenance.”


Cooperators on the conservation expo include Bonucci Farms, Illinois Land Improvement Contractors Association, the Wetlands Initiative, Bureau County Soil & Water Conservation District, Champaign County Soil & Water Conservation District, Illinois Corn Growers Association, Illinois Council on Best Management Practices, Illinois Nutrient Research and Education Council, Stark County Soil & Water Conservation District, USDA-Farm Service Agency, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, and Zea Mays Foundation.


Registration is not required. To reach the event, take County Road 1500 N east from Route 26 just south of Princeton. Signs will direct you to the parking area. For more information about the event, please call ILICA at (309) 446-3700 or the Bureau County SWCD at (815) 875-8732, extension 3.



# # #

Salvation Army Half Price Sale

The Salvation Army in Kewanee is taking note of the change of seasons by offering a half-price sale on much of their merchandise.

Linda Bolls is the Director of the Salvation Army and she says it’s simply another opportunity to give back to a generous community…

Braveheart Fun Day on Saturday

The Braveheart Childrens Advocacy Center in Cambridge will host a Fun Day event on Saturday.

The Center provides counseling services to area children that have suffered abuse as the situation goes through the various legal avenues.

Henry County Sheriff Jim Padilla says that Saturdays’ Fun Day event will serve as a fundraiser to help the Center continue their service to the community…

When asked if there are still large numbers of cases involving abused children in our area, Sheriff Padilla wasted no time in getting to the point...   

Health Care Rate Filings

CHICAGO – The Illinois Department of Insurance (DOI) has submitted to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) health care rate filings recently received from Illinois insurers for the 2017 on-exchange marketplace.  In Illinois and nationwide, 2017 premium rates are increasing for consumers, and in many cases, these increases are significant. The DOI has submitted the 2017 rate filings to federal CMS; however, these rates will not be finalized by federal CMS until October. In addition, network and specific premium information will not be available until October.


“Washington’s failure to fulfill its financial obligations to payers under the Affordable Care Act limited the Department’s ability to fulfill its mandate of protecting families buying insurance on the exchange while fostering a competitive and financially sound marketplace for health consumers in Illinois” said Acting Director AnneMelissa Dowling. “The Department is releasing this rate information in order to provide consumers as much information as possible, as early as possible, so they can better make decisions for their families’ healthcare needs. The amount of financial help individuals qualify for depends on the cost of the plans available in their service area, as well as their ability to pay.  While these rate approvals result in a very difficult outcome for consumers, they were necessary to ensure that all Illinois consumers actually have an option for coverage when the 2017 Open Enrollment begins on November 1, 2016.”


The nationwide and Illinois premium increases are due to several factors, including the absence of payments promised by the federal government as part of the Affordable Care Act and an overall increase in medical and pharmaceutical costs.  Additionally, in 2013, the prior administration chose to permit policyholders to keep non-ACA compliant plans through 2017, which continues to impact ACA compliant plans’ risk pool and contribute to the upward pressure on costs. These factors also forced several carriers to entirely withdraw their on-exchange plans in Illinois and other states.  It is important to note that the Department cannot reject or modify rates under the Affordable Care Act as long as the proposed changes, including significant rate increases, are actuarially sound.


The DOI will continue to work with consumers to assist with obtaining coverage.  It is important for those who are re-enrolling in coverage to look at any options that may be available to them on the Marketplace starting on November 1, 2016.  There will be some new plans available and they may offer better coverage at a lower cost.  DOI reminds consumers that cost should not be the only factor in selecting coverage.  Consumers should also consider matching their plan with a preferred provider.  We encourage consumers to pay close attention to any options available and work with an in-person assister who can help them find a plan for them and their family.


Consumers are encouraged to visit our Get Covered Illinois website (https://getcovered.illinois.gov/) for further information and assistance.  The Get Covered Connector lets consumers search by ZIP code to find local, free application help and is available in Spanish as well as English. Consumers can also use this tool to schedule in-person assistance appointments with navigators and certified application counselors.  Consumers can also call866-311-1119 to get assistance in choosing a plan and also can visit Healthcare.gov.


The rates will be published on the Illinois Department of Insurance’s website here under the ‘latest feed’ tab.  Off-exchange rates are not yet published as their review is being completed by DOI.  DOI will publish them once review is complete.


East Street Closure In Kewanee On Friday


The City of Kewanee has been notified of utility work scheduled by Ameren for Friday 8/26/16.  North East Street will be closed between East 1st and 2nd Streets while work is taking place.  The street is expected to be closed between 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. 


Residents are asked to avoid the area if possible, and to take caution if driving near the work zone.


If questions, please contact City Hall at 852-2611 for more information.

U.S. Senate candidates participate in forum

The two candidates running for the U.S. Senate in Illinois shared stances on farm and other issues at a forum outside of Bloomington Wednesday. Representative Tammy Duckworth used opening remarks to signal support for the federal Renewable Fuels Standard, a nationwide rule on food labeling, and improving trade with Cuba. Duckworth also addressed a question on federal regulation, and in particular the Environmental Protection Agency's waters of the United States rule;

Duckworth, a member of the U-S House from Hoffman Estates, and incumbent U-S Senator Mark Kirk of Highland Park will face off in November. Kirk also addressed the issue of federal regulation and its impact on agriculture;

Kirk indicated his support for a tax incentive on major capital purchases such as farm equipment and the national food labeling standard recently passed by Congress. The Illinois Agricultural Roundtable sponsored the forum.

Economic benefit of Illinois River

An updated study of the economic benefit up upgrading the lock and dam system on the Illinois River was released this month by the Economic Development Research Group. The group, which conducts infrastructure cost/benefit studies for business and government, including the federal government, found maintaining and upgrading the lock system on the Illinois river would provide a boost for not only the Illinois economy but also for a number of other states.
Paul Bingham is vice president of the Boston based Ec0nomic Development Research group.

The Illinois river helps support 1.7 million jobs and 110,000 Illinois businesses. The biggest benefit would be lower transportation costs for ag exports, but grain makes up less than half of the bulk shipping on the river. Petroleum, Coal, Chemicals and other items make up the bulk of the tonnage, impacting businesses from Chicago to New Orleans.
To see the economic impact to your county from upgrading the locks and dams on the Illinois River, the report is available on line.

The study was commissioned by the Illinois Chamber of Commerce, Illinois Farm Bureau, major commodity groups and other impacted businesses.

College Prep Scores are Up

New statistics say that the state’s graduating high school seniors are doing a little better on their ACTs. The Illinois State Board of Education says that seniors averaged 20.8 out of 36 points. It’s a marginal increase of a tenth of a percent. ISBE Division of Student Assessment Administrator Angela Foxall says that they still want to see scores increase.

The state’s students also did as well or better than the national average on the english, math and science portions of the exam. 

Rodney pending


Henry County Sheriff Jim Padilla is the guest 

WKEI Open Line

Open Line for August 25

Boil Order Lifted

Effective Thursday 8/25/16, the boil order has been lifted for residents on Franklin Street between West Prospect and Rose Streets, houses west of Franklin to Adams Street (including Western, Roseview and Zang Avenues), and a few houses on Rose Street between Adams and Franklin will be affected.


KPL on Tuned IN

Sara Billiet talks about Library Programs during the August 25 edition of Tuned IN on WKEI

Senior Meals

The evening meal for tonight at the Henry County Senior Citizen Center will be the Build A Burger which is back once again by popular demand.

Serving begins at 5 o’clock and Senior Center Director Cassandra Schmoll says not only the Build A Burger on the last Thursday of each month, but the evening meals in general are going over very well…

Bishop Hill Chautauqua

The fourth annual Bishop Hill Chautauqua will be held on Saturday and Sunday with most events in the Village Park Gazebo.

Todd DeDecker is the Administrator of the Bishop Hill Heritage Association and he says the theme for this year’s event is America’s Story…

There are several other Chautauqua events on the schedule for Sunday as well…

Food and drink will be available all weekend long at the various establishments in Bishop Hill,,and the reminder as always to bring your own lawn chair or blanket to the show.

Bat and Rabies Safety Info

     The Henry and Stark County Health Departments note with the warm summer months comes the increase in bat activity, which means the possibility of exposure to rabies is increasing. Bats are the primary carrier of rabies in Illinois. The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) has already had 34 bats test positive for rabies this year.


     According to the Illinois Department of Public Health, “You should never try to approach or catch a bat, or any wild animal, you find outside. Bats and wild animals that let people approach them are often not healthy. Instead, call your local animal control agency for its recommendations on how to handle the animal.”


     It should be noted that typically less than 5 percent of bats tested for rabies are found to be rabid. In the bat population as a whole, the percentage of rabid bats is much smaller – less than 1 percent.  Also, any wild mammal, such as raccoons, skunks, foxes, coyotes and bats, can have rabies and transmit it to humans.


     Sandy Sommer, Director of Clinical Services with the Henry and Stark County Health Departments notes, "Rabies is a virus that affects the nervous system. People can get rabies after being bitten by an infected animal. Rabies can also be contracted when saliva from a rabid animal gets directly into a person’s eyes, nose, mouth or a wound. People usually do not know when they have been bitten by a bat, as bats have very small teeth and the bite mark may not be easy to see. If you find yourself in close proximity to a bat and are not sure if you were exposed, for example – you wake up and find a bat in your room, do not kill or release the bat before calling your doctor or local health department to help determine if you could have been exposed to rabies and need preventive treatment. If the bat is available for testing and test results are negative, preventive treatment is not needed."


     Without preventive treatment, rabies is typically fatal. If you have been bitten or have had direct contact with a bat, seek immediate medical attention. Treatment with rabies immune globulin and a vaccine series must begin quickly.  Dorothy David, Health Department Director of Environmental Health Services adds, "An animal does not have to be aggressive or exhibit other symptoms to have rabies. Changes in any animal’s normal behavior can be early signs of rabies. A bat that is active during the day, found on the ground or is unable to fly, is more likely than others to be rabid. Such bats are often easily approached, but should never be handled."


     The following tips can help prevent the spread of rabies:


*   Be a responsible animal owner. Keep vaccinations up-to-date for all dogs, cats, ferrets and other animals you own.


*   Seek immediate veterinary assistance for your pet if your pet has been bitten by a wild animal or exposed to a bat.


*   Call the local animal control agency about removing stray animals in your neighborhood.


*   Do not touch, feed or unintentionally attract wild animals with open garbage cans or litter.


*   Never adopt wild animals or bring them into your home. Do not try to nurse sick, wild animals to health. Call animal control or an animal rescue agency for assistance.


*   Teach children never to handle unfamiliar animals, wild or domestic, even if they appear friendly. “Love your own, leave other animals alone” is a good principle for children to learn to reduce the risk of exposures to rabid animals.


*   Maintain homes and other buildings so bats cannot get inside.


*   If a bat is in your home, do not release the bat outdoors until after speaking with animal control or public health officials. If you can do it without putting yourself at risk for physical contact or being bitten, try to cover the bat with a large can or bucket, and close the door to the room.


      For more information about possible bat exposure contact the Health Department Communicable Disease Nurse at (309) 852-0197 or visit our website atwww.henrystarkhealth.com or Find us on Facebook at Henry and Stark County Health Departments.  If you have a bat in your residence contact your local animal control officer.


     In addition, Information about keeping bats out of your home or buildings can be found by logging on to www.idph.state.il.us/envhealth/pcbats.htm.  Information about rabies can be found at www.idph.state.il.us/health/infect/reportdis/rabies.htm.

Ag In The Classroom Receives Donation




BLOOMINGTON, Ill. - The Illinois Agriculture in the Classroom (IAITC) program will continue its strong legacy of providing free education resources to teachers thanks in part to a $90,000 donation from the Illinois Corn Checkoff, administered by the Illinois Corn Marketing Board (ICMB). 


With its recent contribution, the ICMB helps IAITC fund its upcoming program year, and continues its long-standing position as the top commodity contributor to the ag literacy program. 


"The Illinois Corn Marketing Board is proud to continue our support of agricultural education efforts by investing checkoff dollars with the IAA Foundation and IAITC," said Tom Mueller, chairman, ICMB. "As there are fewer and fewer of us actively engaged in farming, it becomes even more important to provide quality, science-based education resources to youth so that they might grow up with a more robust understanding of how their food gets to their table. And maybe they'll share what they learn with their parents, too."


The donation directly helps 70 Illinois county ag literacy coalitions engage local educators and students with accurate education about agriculture through lessons and materials based in math, language arts, science and social studies. Last year, IAITC reached more than 550,000 students and more than 37,000 teachers. 


During the last several years, support from the Illinois Corn Checkoff has helped make free resources available to classrooms, including Ag Mags on diverse topics from water and soil, to livestock care and corn. This year, efforts will continue to focus on farmers' role as stewards of the land, incorporating practices from the Nutrient Loss Reduction Strategy. 


"The IAITC program will utilize the new Soil and Water Ag Mags to showcase lessons related to watersheds, cover crops and bioreactors," said Kevin Daugherty, education director, IAITC.  "Often, our teachers and general public hear terms and are confused, and the IAITC program has worked to make the terms and strategies easier to understand."


This year's gift marks 25 years of IAITC support from Illinois Corn Farmers. 


"We are thankful to have the support of commodity groups and the farmers they represent," said Susan Moore, director, IAA Foundation. "Through this contribution, Illinois corn farmers can see their dollars directly at work in the classroom, where IAITC continues its successful track record of making important connections to agriculture for students."


Free Webinar

URBANA, Ill. – University of Illinois Extension will host a free webinar, Comprehensive Economic Development Strategies at Work in Illinois,on Thurs., Sept. 15 from noon to 1 p.m.

Darrin Fleener, economic development representative from the U.S. Department of Commerce Economic Development Administration’s Chicago regional office, will provide an overview of the regional planning process. Prior to EDA, Fleener worked for 13 years with the State of Oregon’s economic development department in project management, program development, government relations, and as a rural affairs policy advisor. His professional experience includes working in both urban and rural distressed communities.  

Also presenting will be Jennifer Daly, CEO of Greater Peoria Economic Development District. Daly will share Peoria’s approach to creating a regionally driven economic development process as well as outcomes that have been achieved through this new strategy.

“Economic development requires effective, collaborative institutions that are focused on advancing mutual gain for the public and the private sector,” says Kathie Brown, U of I Extension community and economic development educator. “It’s essential to ensuring the economic future of both rural and urban communities across our state.”

There is no cost to attend the webinar; however, pre-registration is required. Register online to attend or contact University of Illinois Extension’s Russell Medley, Community and Economic Development Educator for Henry, Mercer, Rock Island and Stark Counties at (309) 756-9978 or email rmedley@illinois.edu



Retiring lawmaker, Hall of Fame basketball coach named Grand Marshall of DuQuoin Fair Twilight Parade

Dave Luechtefeld's (Lick-teh-feld) lifetime of work on the hardwood, in the classroom and the chambers of the Illinois Senate has led to a lofty honor. The retiring lawmaker and longtime Okawville basketball coach has been named Grand Marshall of Friday's DuQuoin State Fair Twlight Parade. Luechtefeld knows the importance of the Southern Illinois version of the State Fair and the fairgrounds, and he's hopeful recent developments can lead to overdue repairs and upgrades....

Luechtefeld believes doing things the right way has paid off in coaching and the General Assembly...

Luechtefeld is retiring because new legislative maps shift him to a new district. The Du Quoin State Fair runs Friday through September 5th. The Twilight Parade will take place on Friday at 6pm. 

Cover crop use increased on Illinois farms

With the growing interest in controlling nutrient loss, and improving water quality, cover crops have been getting a lot of attention by farmers recently. Cover crops, usually planted after harvest, left as a winter cover, then taken off before spring planting hold erodible soils in place, help lock in nutrients and actually help organic matter in the soil.
John Pike with Council on Best Management Practices says improving productivity and holding nutrients in the soil is driving the interest in cover crops

Pike, a former U of I research agronomist at the Dixon Springs Research center, says cover crops can improve the soil and improve the bottom line. What’s the easiest way to find out more about the latest research results on the use of cover crops?

Agronomist John Pike

Gun Laws Changed To Hopefully Impact Chicago Violence

As gun violence continues to plague the city of Chicago the Governor signs new legislation that will be tougher on the trafficking of weapons into Illinois. The new law will allow for prosecutors to seek up to 20 years of prison for a first time offense and 30 for a second offense. The law is squarely aimed at efforts to cut the number of illegal guns in Chicago and their impact on the cities’ murder count. House Minority Leader Republican Jim Durkin says that it’s clear what’s being done with many of the guns brought to Illinois.

Authorities say that a large percentage of the guns used in crimes in Chicago are brought in from Indiana where there are very few hurdles to purchasing them.

Crops Looking Good

The state’s corn crop is racing to completion and recent wet weather is helping top out possible yields. The United State’s Department of Agriculture reports that above average rainfall across the state fell last week and its timed well to help fill out the pods on soybeans. State crop statistician Mark Schleusener says the bean crop is in good shape.

The state’s corn crop is just starting to mature, and what’s in the field is in very good condition, 84 percent is reported looking good to excellent. 


Trooper Jason Wilson talks about self driving trucks during the August 24 edition of People to People on WKEI

WKEI Open Line

Open Line for August 24


SCSWCD on Tuned IN

Conservation updates from Resource Conservationist Jan Powelson

Wethersfield Basketball Fundraiser

Boys Basketball is running a fundraiser for the upcoming season August 29th from 530-730 at Pizza Hut.  Any student interested in playing basketball and didnt get tickets please see Coach Parsons.

Chamber Prepares For Hog Fest

The timeline for deadlines and entries for this Hog Festival Celebration is starting to dwindle down.

Mark Mikenas is the Executive Director of the Kewanee Chamber of Commerce and he says with the parade entry deadline now past, the next phase comes very quickly…

Mikenas adds that the parade line-up committee will be at work later this evening putting together the parade for the September 3rd Hog Festival Parade…

So just how does the parade line-up evolve and what are the things the committee focuses on when putting that line-up together…

4-H Youth Shooting Program

Youth ages 10 and older as of September 1 can get on target with 4-H Shooting Sports programs when they sign up for the shotgun club. It will meet Wednesdays, September 7 – November 2 at the shooting range in Baker’s Park in Kewanee, IL.  There are three different sessions to choose from: 5 pm, 6 pm or 7 pm with a limit of 10 youth per session. In this club, 4-H members can learn shooting techniques, how to handle their equipment safely and responsibly and learn other skills including team work and problem solving. The cost to join 4-H for the year is $20, and then members pay any associated supplies. Shotguns and ammunition is provided thanks to a grant from the NRA and the Illinois 4-H Foundation.  You can register online at web.extension.illinois.edu/hmrs or call University of Illinois Extension – Henry/Stark office in Galva, IL at 309-932-3447.

Abilities Plus Scholarship Winners


Abilities Plus announces three new recipients of their Jean German Academic Scholarships, which are funded each year through the agency’s endowment program.  The scholarship program is named in memory of founder and long-time supporter, Jean German.  Elizabeth Bral of Kewanee, Uriah Rico of Annawan, and Victoria Walters of Kewanee are this year’s recipients. Bral will be a junior this fall at St. Ambrose University, majoring in Special Education, Rico will be a senior at Augustana College, majoring in Communication Science & Disorders, and Walters is working on a Masters of Speech-Language Pathology at St. Ambrose University.  The scholarships are given to local students pursuing degrees in a human services field, with career goals of working with individuals with disabilities.

Bureau County Announces Road Closure

Please be advised that, by order of the Gold Township Road Commissioner, the section of 2250 North Avenue from 15 East Street west to the Bureau/Henry County Line will be closed from 7:00 a.m. on Wednesday August 24th until 5:00 p.m. on Thursday August 25th. 

Rauner weighs in on Kirk saying President Obama is acting like "Drug Dealer in Chief"

Senator Mark Kirk is making waves with his comment that President Barack Obama was "acting like the drug dealer in chief" when his administration delivered $400 million in cash to Iran contingent on the release of American prisoners. Governor Bruce Rauner wasn't ready to sign on to that comment, but he does believe in much of the reasoning behind it....

A spokesman for Kirk opponent, Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth says Kirk was "disgracefully insulting" the president.

Wet weather continues

July and August have been on the wet side this year, capped off the first weekend of this years State Fair when State Climatologist Jim Angel says the same system that caused the massive flooding in Louisiana inundated the fairgrounds and brought up to ten inches of rain to parts of Southern Illinois.

And the rest of August also looks warm and wet.

Jim Angel. He says September looks to be an the warm side, but it’s too early to predict September precipitation. The National Weather service is calling for above normal temperatures to last at least into November. 

Mayor Looney on PTP

Kewanee Mayor Steve Looney talks about city issues during the August 23 edition of People to People on WKEI


WKEI Open Line

WKEI Open Line For August 23

BHHA On Tuned IN

BHHA Administrator Todd DeDecker talks about this weekend's Chautauqua during the August 23 edition of Tuned IN on WKEI

Justice Reforms Coming to Illinois

Changes are coming to the criminal justice system in Illinois. Governor Bruce Rauner put pen to paper on a set of bills that will perhaps alter the future for kids who run afoul of the law and changes circumstances for older offenders too. One new bill will let teenagers who were arrested but not charged with a crime immediate apply for expungement of the record. In the past they needed to wait until they turned 18. Rauner says the justice system need to take all items into account when punishing
and reforming.

Another bill will require a more detailed review of any pre-sentencing reports to include an explanation if jail time is requested.

LULAC Parade Seeks Entries


EAST MOLINE -- Organizers of the annual LULAC Quad Cities Fiesta Parade are seeking more participants for theSept. 18 event.


The parade begins at noon on 15th Avenue, in downtown East Moline. The route runs from 3rd to 10th Streets.


The parade was launched seven years ago by Quad City residents Abel and Juanita Zertuche in honor of Mexican Independence Day. Parade organizer Abel Zertuche described the event as a community-wide celebration of Mexican heritage, culture and traditions. He invites everyone to participate or enjoy the parade as a spectator.


Any organization, club, business or family can register a float in the parade by calling Abel Zertuche at 309-737-5915. Parade organizers are also seeking more floats that represent the various states of Mexico and showcase authentic costumes.  


A Mexican Independence Day Fiesta will follow the parade, starting at 2 p.m. at the intersection of 15th Avenue and 8th Street in East Moline. LULAC Quad Cities is hosting the street celebration and there is no charge for admission. The event will feature food and merchandise vendors, live music and performances that will include the Glenview Mariachi Band.


Last year, more than 2,000 people from the greater Quad City region attended the parade and fiesta.


For more information about the parade, or to register a float, call Abel Zertuche at 309-737-5915.


The two events culminate a series of community activities that begin Sept. 10  in celebration of LULAC Quad Cities Fiesta Week.


LULAC Quad Cities is a partnership between Davenport Council 10, Moline Council 5285, Youth council 600 and the St. Ambrose University Collegiate Council. The 200-plus members have joined efforts to raise funds for scholarships to support the education of local Hispanic American students. Last year, LULAC Quad Cities awarded $33,000 in scholarships to 48 local students.


The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) is the nation’s largest and oldest civil rights volunteer-based organization that empowers Hispanic Americans and builds strong Latino communities.  Headquartered in Washington, DC, with 1000 councils around the United States and Puerto Rico, LULAC’s programs, services and advocacy address the most important issues for Latinos, meeting critical needs of today and the future.  For more information, visit www.LULAC.org.


Solar Informational Meetings

The Henry, Bureau and LaSalle County Farm Bureaus will be hosting informational meetings on a proposed solar project.

Topics of discussion will include contract law basics, lease terms, compensation structure, landowner obligations and much more.

Henry County Farm Bureau Manager Katie Laleman says an August 30th meeting is scheduled for the Community Building in Annawan…

Ms. Laleman adds that it will be an informational meeting in scope but one  should always be prepared for specifics when it comes to these informational meetings…

Gov Rauner Signs Severa Measures Into Law l

CHICAGO – Governor Bruce Rauner today signed five bills aimed at reforming Illinois’ criminal justice system to focus on rehabilitation to reduce recidivism and help low level offenders find a brighter future. This package of bills specifically helps young people who have fallen on hard times find the help they need to get on a better track. 


“We need to approach our criminal justice system with more compassion,” said Governor Rauner. “I want those who did something wrong to face punishment, but we must make sure that the punishment fits the crime. We need to explore new avenues so that we’re balancing punishment with rehabilitation and not needlessly tearing families and lives apart.”


This is the latest step in the Rauner administration’s attempt to reform the criminal justice system in Illinois. Within the first month of the administration, Governor Rauner created the Illinois State Commission on Criminal Justice and Sentencing Reform. Its job was to create recommendations that would transform Illinois' justice system to make it more responsive to the people it served, while also cutting down on the unnecessary incarcerations and costs. These bills, coupled with administrative changes, make reforms in the criminal justice system that will help safely reduce the number of prison admissions, the length of prison stays and reduce recidivism by increasing the chances of successful re-entry.


“Governor Rauner set out to make Illinois a more compassionate state and he is making good on that initiative,” said Illinois Department of Corrections Director John Baldwin. “Today's bills will help ensure that we are giving young men and women a second chance at life. Instead of focusing on the past, we are attempting to rehabilitate people who have been incarcerated and create opportunities for low level offenders to build a future.”


SB 3164 requires review of a pre-sentencing report, as well as an explanation of why incarceration is appropriate for offenders with no prior probation sentences or prison convictions prior to sentencing. Last year, nearly 60 percent of new prison admissions for Class 3 or 4 felonies had no prior convictions for violent crimes. Sending low-level offenders with no prior probation or other convictions inefficiently uses prison resources and potentially makes low-level offenders more susceptible to reoffending. This legislation was sponsored by Sen. Michael Connelly and Rep. Brian Stewart and was a recommendation made by the Governor’s Commission on Criminal Justice and Sentencing Reform.


HB 6291 amends the Juvenile Court Act to change the minimum probation period for a youth adjudicated delinquent. The purpose of the bill is to help bring Illinois in line with other states and the latest research by reducing mandatory minimum lengths of probation and treating low level offenses with treatment. This ensures that youth struggling with addictions will have the opportunity to go through the treatment process before being sent to prison.


HB 5017 allows a juvenile to immediately petition the court for expungement when he or she is charged with an offense that is dismissed without a finding of delinquency. Under current law, the statute only allows for a petition of expungement when the youth has reached the age of 18. This bill will help youth who were arrested but not charged get a fresh start and clear their names.


HB 6200 addresses per minute rates of phone calls for inmates. The bill reduces the rate that the Illinois Department of Corrections and the Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice can contract for telephone providers.


SB 3005 amends the Park District Code to provide that a park district shall not knowingly employ a person who has been convicted of specified drug offenses until seven years following the end of a sentence imposed including periods of supervision or probation. The previous law stated that park districts could not employ any person convicted of the specified drug offenses. It furthermore scales pack prohibitions on employment for convictions of public indecency to Class 4 felonies.


The Governor also took action on the following bills:


Bill No.: HB 2569

An Act Concerning Criminal Law

Action: Signed

Effective: January 1, 2017


Bill No.: HB 4515

An Act Concerning Regulation

Action: Signed

Effective: January 1, 2017


Bill No.: HB 5572

An Act Concerning State Government

Action: Signed

Effective: Immediate


Bill No.: HB 5613

An Act Concerning the Law Enforcement Information Task Force Act

Action: Signed

Effective: Immediate


Bill No.: HB 5771

An Act Concerning Criminal Law

Action: Signed

Effective: January 1, 2017


Bill No.: HB 5973

An Act Concerning Regulation

Action: Signed

Effective: January 1, 2017


Bill No.: HB 6037

An Act Concerning Criminal Law

Action: Signed

Effective: Immediate


Bill No.: HB 6324

An Act Concerning State Government

Action: Signed

Effective: Immediate


Bill No.: HB 6328

An Act Concerning State Government

Action: Signed

Effective: January 1, 2017


Bill No.: SB 2370

An Act Concerning Criminal Law

Action: Signed

Effective: January 1, 2017


Bill No.: SB 2885

An Act Concerning Criminal Law

Action: Signed

Effective: January 1, 2017



SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity’s Office of Energy Assistance has announced that the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) will begin accepting applications for winter heating assistance for seniors and people with disabilities beginning September 1, 2016.

LIHEAP and the Percentage of Income Payment Plan (PIPP) program are funded as part of the stopgap funding plan signed into law by Governor Rauner.

LIHEAP is a state and federally funded energy assistance program for low-income families, in which heating bill payments are made on behalf of households. Applications are processed through a network of 35 local administering agencies around the state. These agencies will begin accepting applications on a first-come, first-served basis from the elderly and people with disabilities starting on September 1, 2016.

Applicants can apply locally at Project Now located at 207 West Second Street in Kewanee.

Once again, applications will be accepted beginning September 1st for the elderly and those people with disabilities.

Applications will be accepted beginning on October 1st for families with children age five and under and applications will be accepted from the general public beginning on November 1st.   

Clients must bring all required documentation when applying for assistance including:

·  Proof of gross income from all household members for the 30-day income period beginning with the date of the application.

·  A copy of their current heat and electric bills issued within the last 30 days (if they pay for their energy directly).

·  A copy of their rental agreement (if they are renting) showing that utilities are included, the monthly rental amount and landlord contact information.

·  Proof of Social Security numbers for all household members.

·  Proof that their household received Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF); Aid to the Aged, Blind, or Disabled (AABD); or other benefits, such as Medical Eligibility or Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), if receiving assistance from the Illinois Department of Human Services.

A single-person household can qualify with a monthly income of up to $1,485; a two-person household up to $2,003; a family of three can earn up to $2,520; and a family of four can earn up to $3,038. Benefits are paid directly to energy vendors on behalf of eligible households. The exception is households whose heating costs are included in their rent. These households must provide proof that their rent is more than 30% of their income in order to qualify for LIHEAP benefits.

Disconnected households and families with children ages 5 or under (includes all children who are not yet 6 years old, that is, up to 5 years and 364 days old) can begin applying for LIHEAP assistance beginning October 1, 2016. Individuals not eligible for priority enrollment can apply beginning November 1, 2016.

PIPP will also be available starting September 1, 2016 for LIHEAP eligible households who are customers of one of the following utilities: Ameren Illinois, ComEd, Nicor Gas and Peoples Gas and North Shore Gas utilities. Under PIPP, eligible households pay a percentage of their income towards their utility bill, supplemented by a monthly benefit. Participating households are eligible for a reduction in outstanding bills for every on-time payment they make. Applicants will be served on a first-come, first-served basis until funding is exhausted.

For a complete listing of LIHEAP’s local administering agencies and additional information about the program, go towww.liheapIllinois.com, or call the energy assistance toll-free hotline at 1-877-411-WARM.

MAP Amendment Update

The Redistricting or MAP Amendment measure is currently awaiting a decision by the Illinois Supreme Court to determine whether or not that measure will appear on the November ballot.

If the measure makes the ballot and is approved by voters, the process of drawing up political maps in the state would be taken out of the hands of lawmakers who tend to draw up maps that favor their potential for re-election.

Dave Mellet (Muh-Lay) is located in Chicago  and he is the Campaign Manager for the Amendment movement and he says is the measure becomes law, some might still question or not a new commission would also be impartial…

The decision from the Supreme Court is expected by August 26th so that there will be time to get the measure included in the November ballot.

Mellet adds that if the Amendment becomes law, a specific process would then take place to help make the measure a reality…

Mellet adds that even if approved, it will still be several years before the measure becomes a reality at the ballot box…

Top swimming publication believes future is bright for Olympic swimmer from Springfield

He was a media darling of the early hours of the Rio Olympics, but Springfield's Ryan Held could prove to be much more than a national gold medal winning feelgood story. Swimming World Magazine Publisher Brent Rutemiller believes Ryan Lochte's days as an Olympic swimmer are likely over but he doesn't expect punishment for four swimmers tied to Lochte's false armed robbery report to have much impact on Held's future Olympic opportunities...

Rutemiller says Held's surge from a dark horse Olympic candidate to gold medalist was no fluke..

With 19-year-old Katie Ledecky dominating on the women's side and the likes of Michael Phelps leaving Olympic swimming behind, Rutemiller believes youth, like the 21-year-old Held, will be served at the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.

State Fair Ends 10 Day Run

The Illinois State Fair ended its 10 day run on Sunday. The state’s big party that doubles as a celebration of agriculture was besieged with bad weather this year. Historic rains hit the fairgrounds on the first Friday of the fair and then continued rains throughout the week hampered efforts to pack the grounds with people. Veteran fair vendors said this was the worst fair they had for selling items, some said their revenues were off 50 percent from last year. The Department of Agriculture is waiting to announce attendance, this year they are going to weigh all the tickets to determine how many people attended the fair.

CMS Helping in Louisiana

The state has a connection to helping after the historic flooding in Louisiana. The Department of Central Management Services says their surplus program is coming to the aid of many in the southern United States. Tim Neitzel drove the first load down.

The state has helped out in other disasters before and most recently supplies were delivered during the winter floods on the Illinois and Mississippi river this past December.

WKEI Open Line

A variety of topics hit the WKEI Open LIne on Monday, August 22


OSF On Tuned IN

Backpack safety is discussed during the August 22 edition of Tuned IN on WKEI

Wethersfield One to One

The One to One Initiative is an opportunity for students to embrace technology on the next level in the classroom and beyond.

Wethersfield High School Principal Mr. Jeremiah Johnston says that the case at Wethersfield…

Mr. Johnston adds that the Junior High students at Wethersfield will receive chrome books this week…

BHC Healthcare Program

Considering a career in health care? Not sure which program is right for you?


Come to an informational session Tuesday, Aug. 23 and learn about Black Hawk College’s short-term health care training programs.


Health Care Career Programs: An Overview will be from 4:30-6 p.m. in the new Health Sciences Center at the college’s Quad-Cities Campus in Moline.


Meet one-on-one with instructors and get brief overviews of their programs, such as Assisted Living Professional, Dietary Aide, EKG Technician, Health Care Receptionist, Medical Scribe, Mental Health Technician, Pharmacy Technician, Phlebotomy Technician and Physical Therapy Aide.


This is a FREE event, but registration is required. Call Black Hawk College Professional and Continuing Education at 309-796-8223.


CMS Assists Louisiana

SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department of Central Management Services (CMS) is providing assistance to the State of Louisiana’s flood relief efforts. Yesterday afternoon a volunteer from CMS left to deliver 100,000 sandbags and 45 cots to add to Louisiana’s flood relief response efforts. CMS is also sending two water purification systems which left the Springfield warehouse this morning. The donated items will be used to support temporary housing shelters and flood damage mitigation.


Early Wednesday morning, Louisiana State Surplus put out an urgent request to other states’ surplus agencies, including the Illinois Department of Central Management Services, to assist in any way possible with the extreme flooding. The Baton Rouge area has been inundated by severe storms and flooding in recent days and is under a Federal Emergency Management Agency Disaster Declaration.


The sandbags, cots and filtration system were acquired by CMS through a partnership the agency has with the U.S. General Services Administration. Federal Surplus generally includes equipment such as vehicles, electronics, food service equipment, hand-tools, outdoor equipment, etc.


CMS and other state agencies are standing by for requests to contribute additional equipment and supplies. At this point no other personnel or services have been requested, however, more rain is forecasted for the area.



SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department of Central Management Services (CMS) is providing assistance to the State of Louisiana’s flood relief efforts. Yesterday afternoon a volunteer from CMS left to deliver 100,000 sandbags and 45 cots to add to Louisiana’s flood relief response efforts. CMS is also sending two water purification systems which left the Springfield warehouse this morning. The donated items will be used to support temporary housing shelters and flood damage mitigation.


Early Wednesday morning, Louisiana State Surplus put out an urgent request to other states’ surplus agencies, including the Illinois Department of Central Management Services, to assist in any way possible with the extreme flooding. The Baton Rouge area has been inundated by severe storms and flooding in recent days and is under a Federal Emergency Management Agency Disaster Declaration.


The sandbags, cots and filtration system were acquired by CMS through a partnership the agency has with the U.S. General Services Administration. Federal Surplus generally includes equipment such as vehicles, electronics, food service equipment, hand-tools, outdoor equipment, etc.


CMS and other state agencies are standing by for requests to contribute additional equipment and supplies. At this point no other personnel or services have been requested, however, more rain is forecasted for the area.


Wethersfield Class Lunch on Tuesday

City Plans Water Shutoff


Effective Tuesday 8/23/16, the City of Kewanee Water Department is planning a water shut off with a boil order to follow.  Water is expected to be off at 8:00 a.m. Tuesday morning.


Residents on Franklin Street between West Prospect and Rose Streets, houses west of Franklin to Adams Street (including Western, Roseview and Zang Avenues), and a few houses on Rose Street between Adams and Franklin will be affected.


Any residents, whose water has been shut off during this repair, will be under a boil order for 48 – 72 hours following the restoration of water service.

Residents in these areas may experience low pressure, rusty water, or no water.  If the water has been turned off, take precautions when using water until the water runs clean.  Only flush the system by running cold water, running hot water may draw rust into the water heater. 

If you have any questions, please call City Hall at 852-2611.

Back Road Music Festival Once Again Rocks Galva

Another year and another major success for the organizers of the Back Road Music Festival. Thousands turned out to see rising country music star Chris Lane, The Voice stars The Swon Brothers, the legendary David Lee Murphy and headliner Easton Corbin perform more than 7 hours of country music. The festival also successfully raised funds for both Shave for the Brave, an organization benefitting Honor Flight of the Quad Cities, and the JP Diabetic Relief Fund aimed at fighting Juvenile Diabetes. A fired up crowd cheered heartily enjoying a terrifc outdoor event on day many thought might be marred by rain but ended up getting a beautiful day. 

Coaches Corner Saturday August 20

Inaugural edition for the 2016 season


Illinois State Fair vendors struggle

Weather has been a tough obstacle for vendors at this year's Illinois State Fair. Record rain hit on the fair's first full day and more rain fell on Monday. A power outage this week and this year's decision to end the free Preview Day also cut into business. Dry days have been of the hot and sticky variety. Peoria area restaurateur Phil Kaplas has been a fair vendor for 13 years and operates four stands currently. He says there has been a noticeable silence at times at his registers...

Some vendors have cut their part time help. The Illinois State Fair continues through Sunday.

LaHood weighs in on Rauner push for more seats in General Assembly

Congressman Darin LaHood may have left the Illinois Senate but state legislative matters remain on his mind. He is hopeful Governor Rauner's promise of a big push to gain control of the State Senate and House.....

The Peoria Republican left the State Senate last year to run for the Congressional seat vacated by Aaron Schock.

Tough path to new farm bill

The 2014 Farm Bill is a four year bill, expiring in 2018. We are now in the last half of 2016, and by the time we get past the elections and the lame duck session of congress we will be in 2017. With the gridlock in congress, the old rural/urban coalition that successfully crafted farm bills in the past has fallen apart, leading 15th District Congessman Rodney Davis, who sits on the House Ag Committee to question the ability of congress to agree on a new bill by 2018.

Davis participated in a Congressional Round table, hosted by the RFD Network this week at the Illinois State Fair.
The congressman says putting together the 2014 bill was a struggle, and came about only because Republican and Democrats were able to craft a bill that met the needs ag agriculture, but also satisfied the large coalition of budget cutters.

Many in congress feel the difficulty in crafting a new farm bill will result in essentially extending the current farm, perhaps with a few tweaks.

New Law to Help the Playing of Taps

The idea of a Henry County student is now law in Illinois. Governor Bruce Rauner recently signed House Bill 4432, which will allow students an excused absence for sounding ‘taps’ at military honors ceremonies for deceased veterans. The measure was inspired by Jack Bumann and sponsored by State Representative Don Moffitt.

Bumann is entering his senior year at Alwood High School in Woodhull. 

Calling All Military

Tomorrow (Saturday) August 20th there is a Parade starting at 2o'clock in the afternoon for all military personel Past and Present.  The parade will start at Geneseo High School and go to the Park where the Vietnam Wall is Displayed.  There is a free Pork Chop dinner after.  

Kirk continues to differ with Duckworth on Syrian refugees

Sometimes candidates have a message that isn't as strong as their campaign commercials. That's not the case for Senator Mark Kirk when it comes to his criticism of opponent Tammy Duckworth on the issue of allowing refugees from war torn Syria.....

Kirk's campaign has been targeting Duckworth's call for accepting Syrian refugees in campaign ads since late last year.

Rebuilding Together In Kewanee For Saturday Postponed

Due to the forecast of persistent rain, the work day for Rebuilding Together Henry County planned for tomorrow in Kewanee has been rescheduled to Saturday, August 27th.  Volunteers who had signed up for the event are asked to confirm their availability for next weekend.  Because some volunteers are expected to have commitments on the 27th, additional volunteers will be needed.  Pre-registration for the event can be done on the group’s website beginning Saturday afternoon at www.rebuildingtogether-hc.org




Michael Devine with the IRS in St Louis talks about a new round of scams during the August 19 edition of People to People on WKEI

WKEI Open Line

Rain and Donald Trump are discussed during the August 19 edition of the Open LIne on WKEI

Grand Opening For Dan Swanson


     KEWANEE, Ill. – A Grand Opening for Friends of Dan Swanson Campaign Headquarters is Friday, Aug. 19 from 10 a.m.- 2:00 p.m. with the Kewanee Chamber of Commerce performing the Ribbon Cutting at 11 am.  The headquarters is located at 111 West 1st Street in Kewanee, Ill.  The event is free to the public and refreshments will be served.

     Swanson, is running for State Representative, 74th District to replace retiring State Representative Don Moffitt.   Swanson served on active duty with the Kewanee National Guard and is excited to return to the Kewanee area.



Hike The Hennepin

The Friends of the Canal are holding their monthly Hike the Canal outing on Sunday, August 21.

This portion of the "Hike the Hennepin" is 3.2 miles in length and it has been named the "Kingfisher".

The hike will be from Lock 17 to Lock 21. Hikers will meet at Lock 21 (Lift Bridge) at 1: 30 pm, where we will be shuttled to Lock 17 to begin our hike. Lock 21 is located approximately three miles west of Wyanet on Routes 6 & 34.

The monthly hikes were developed by the Friends of the Hennepin Canal as an opportunity for everyone to get to know the Canal personally by hiking it from the Illinois River to the Mississippi (including the Feeder Canal) in small legs. You need not be a member of the Friends to join us in any of the hikes.

There is no fee for the hikes. Come and join in the fun and bring a friend.

We ask that you dress weather appropriately.

For more information, contact Ed Herrmann

at: hikes@friends-hennepin-canal.org (email) or call 815-664-2403 (home) or log on to our website at: www.friends-hennepin-canal.org.

Next Hike: September 18

Hike route: Bridge 52 to Bridge 56 Length: 4.2 miles Meet at: Bridge 56 (IL Rt. 92)

Hike name: Red Squirrel

IRS Moving Expenses

Some people that are required by their company to move in a job related situation may be able to claim some of those expenses off of their taxes.

Michael Devine with the IRS in St Louis says not everyone can but many people can deduct those expenses…

Devine adds that many Henry County residents have taken advantage of those deductions…

WQAD TV 8 at KHS on August 26

The start of the high school football season is one week from tonight and next Friday will be more than just a football game at Kewanee High School.

Kewanee High School Principal Mr. Jamie Bryan says that WQAD TV 8 will be at KHS early next Friday morning for a live remote for a prep rally…

Mr. Bryan agrees that it will be a very early start to the day translating to a very long day, but a very exciting day just the same…

Shave For The Brave Gary Metivier

The Shave for the Brave campaign will be a part of the festivities at the Back Road Music Festival in Galva on Saturday.

Under that program, any volunteer can have a beard shaved off or long hair shorn with a corresponding fund raising effort with proceeds donated to the Honor Flight Program.

KWQC TV 6 News Anchor Gary Metivier has been growing a beard for the campaign and he talks about what it was like to grow his beard for the effort…

Gary adds that it was a bit of a chance encounter that got him involved with beard growing effort…

Gary has been involved with the Honor Flight Program for many years and he adds that it’s just his way of helping out…

All Aboard For Unique Train Trip

Local train enthusiasts will have the opportunity to go on a unique weekend trip next month. Robert Tabern, Executive Director of the APRHF Rail Rangers, says people will be able to ride inside an Authentic 1955 dome car called “Prairie View”.
The car will make a stop in Mendota for boarding around 4:30pm on Friday, Sept. 9th. But Tabern says you can board it in other cities too.

The price of the ticket includes round trip travel to La Plata Missouri, two meals, a guided tour, a trackside cookout, and a two night hotel stay. You can purchase one online at railrangers.org.

If you like traveling on trains, you can purchase a ticket to go on one of the APRHF Rail Rangers Excursions this Fall. The first one will be a round trip to La Plata, MO Sept. 9-11, and the second will be a one way trip to that same destination on Oct. 1.
Rail Rangers Executive Director Robert Tabern says the ticket price for the Sept. weekend trip includes round trip train fare, two meals, two nights at a hotel in La Plata, Missouri, and a guided tour to take place on Saturday.

The 1955 dome car called the “Prairie View” will stop to pick up passengers in Mendota at around 4:30 Friday Sept. 9th.
If you’d like to be on that train, you can purchase your ticket online at railrangers.org.

Abilities Plus Info

Abilities Plus in Kewanee recently inducted 4 new members into their Plus One Legacy Society.

Kim Walker is the Executive Director of Abilities Plus and she says there are now 32 names on the Plus One Legacy Society plaque…

Julie Landwehr is the Director of Development at Abilities Plus and she says their Resale Shop continues to hum right along…

Family Planning Program

   The Henry and Stark County Health Departments remind area residents of their Family Planning clinic program.


    Through the family planning clinic program, the Health Department hopes to give women the information and means they need to plan pregnancies and make responsible decisions.  The program also hopes to detect other health problems early in their development so that clients can be referred to other health care providers for treatment.


    Clinics are held in Kewanee at the Health Department offices, Route 78 South.  Appointments, which are necessary, may be made by contacting the Health Department.


    The family planning program provides annual physical exams to area women, including a breast exam and pap smear.


    The clinic accepts medicaid payments and private pay.  A sliding fee scale, based on the client's income, had been established to assist low-income families to obtain services.  In addition, grant funds are available for those who meet certain eligibility requirements.


    In addition to contraceptive services, the clinic also offers pregnancy testing.  


    For more information or to schedule an appointment call the Health Department at (309) 852-5272 or visit our website atwww.henrystarkhealth.com or find us on Facebook at Henry and Stark County Health Departments or Follow Us on Twitter.

Partial Street Closure Today in Kewanee


The City of Kewanee has been notified of utility work scheduled by Ameren for Thursday 8/18/16.  South East Street will be closed between East 1st and Willow Streets while work is taking place.  The street is expected to be closed between 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. 


Residents are asked to avoid the area if possible, and to take caution if driving near the work zone.


If questions, please contact City Hall at 852-2611 for more information.

Extension Webinar Series Announced

The University of Illinois Extension Horticulture Team brings this FREE gardening series to your personal computer! Register now to take the Illinois Native Pollinators on August 23 at 1:30 or August 25 at 6:30 p.m.  When it comes to pollination, honey bees get a majority of the attention.  However, many insects play a role in pollination.  Join University of Illinois Extension Educator Ken Johnson as he discusses native pollinators.  Ken will discuss different native pollinators and how to make your landscape attractive to them. Register online atweb.extension.illinois.edu/hmrs/4seasons or call (309) 756-9978

Moffitt Legislation Signed Into Law

Legislation sponsored by State Representative Don Moffitt (R-Gilson) and signed into law by Governor Rauner during Veterans Day at the State Fair on Sunday will allow students an excused absence for sounding ‘taps’ at military honors ceremonies held in the State of Illinois for deceased veterans.


House Bill 4432 was inspired by Jack Bumann, a senior this coming year at Alwood High School in Woodhull, Illinois, in Henry County. Jack estimates that he has played at the funerals of about two dozen fallen soldiers.  Bumann suggested the legislation to Rep. Moffitt.  Bumann, who was in attendance at the State Fair Bill Signing Ceremony, described the significance of his involvement at military honors funerals, saying, “It really . . . it hits you when you hear it (“Taps”). You realize what it means and how many times it’s been played for how many different fallen soldiers. It's a big part of our nation’s history.”


“The most important reason for passage of HB 4432 was to help make available to any family mourning the loss of a soldier or veteran, the option of having ‘Taps’ played as a live tribute as opposed to a recording,” said Moffitt. “The signing of HB 4432 helps deliver an added level of honor and respect for the military person who has passed. Additionally, the playing of ‘Taps’ by a high school student at a military service is an excellent civics lesson for the student. It is a reminder that freedom is not free; it is only preserved by the service and dedication of our American soldiers.”

Wet August

Since last Friday, most areas of Illinois have seen a lot rain. The exception being a few areas in west-central Illinois that missed the heaviest rain. Eric Schmidt of Newton, Il based EJS weather says we are well above average for August rainfall.

Last weekends rains were the remnants of a tropical system, the same system responsible for the record flooding in parts of Louisiana. Schmidt says this time of year is peak hurricane season, and these systems occasionally bring heavy rains this far North. Aside from tropical storms, Schmidt expects to see a couple more rain events this month that should take the corn and soybean crop right up to harvest.

Eric Schmidt of EJS weather.

Private Fair Foundation Created

After years of waiting for lawmakers to approve an Illinois State Fair Foundation, private citizens have stepped up and created one. Governor Bruce Rauner announced on Tuesday that a group called the Illinois Fairgrounds Foundation has come together to start raising money to provide for needed infrastructure improvements on the fair grounds. Rauner notes that this is a private group and they will make
their own decisions on how to raise fund and spend them.

Rauner and Ag Director Raymond Poe both say they support naming rights for buildings on the grounds. Tuesday was another example of failing infrastructure on the State Fairgrounds. A number of buildings were without power for most of the day.

Power out in portions of Illinois State Fairgrounds

Sometimes it seems if it weren't for bad luck, the 2016 Illinois State Fair would have no luck at all. A power outage has hit the south end of the Illinois State Fairgrounds, where cleanup continues in areas hard hit by record rain Friday and more downpours Monday. The outage first appeared at 9:30 this (Tuesday) morning. Troubleshooters continue to check transformers in hopes of finding the cause of the outage. Without finding the source, state fair officials say they're not ready to offer a timetable for restoration of power. Some vendors, already dealing with a smaller than usual preview night crowd, record rain Friday and more rain Monday, are fighting to save their products. Public health officials are assisting in that effort and refrigerators at the Department of Agriculture tent are being used in a bid to do just that. 

Salvation Army on Tuned IN

Salvation Army programs are discussed during the August 17 edition of Tuned IN on WKEI


Farm Bureau Driving Course

The Henry, Bureau and Stark County Farm Bureau’s will host a defensive driving course on September 1st and 2nd at the Black Hawk College Community Education Center in Kewanee.

Henry County Farm Bureau Manager Katie Laleman says the course is open to people age 55 and older who are auto policy holders…

The registration fee of $30 will cover course materials and lunch for both days.

The program was developed by the National Safety Council and is very informative, entertaining and relevant to today’s driving environment…

Lawmakers Earmark Money For QC Airport

ROCK ISLAND - Today, Congresswoman Cheri Bustos (IL-17) and U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced $900,000 in federal funding for infrastructure improvements and upgrades at Quad City International Airport. The grants were awarded through the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration. This project will fund Phase 2 of 2 to update outlying gates and secure areas.


“The Quad City International Airport is absolutely critical for our local economy and I’m proud to help announce these funds to improve it,” said Congresswoman Bustos. “By making investments in our transportation infrastructure, we’re ensuring that the Quad-Cities community is a great place to live, work and raise a family.”


“This is great news for the Quad Cities and the state of Illinois. Today’s funding will help pay for much-needed security upgrades at Quad City International Airport,” said Durbin. “Responding to the ever-changing safety needs of our state’s airports is critical, and I will continue working to make sure Illinois has access to the transportation and infrastructure grants that keep travelers and airport workers safe.”


Improvements at KHS District 229

Students in Kewanee School District #229 are likely seeing some of the updates and improvements that were made over the course of the summer.

District 229 Supt of Schools Dr. Chris Sullens says the summertime provided a great opportunity for the staff to catch up…

Dr Sullens adds that other improvements were also made over the course of the summer…

MAP Amendment Update

The group that wants to overhaul the way the state of Illinois draws its legislative maps has presented its final written arguments to the Illinois Supreme Court. The Independent Map Amendment (IMA) coalition, which includes Illinois Farm Bureau (IFB), argues that a lower court’s ruling against the constitutionality of the redistricting reform amendment is contrary to:

* the intent of the drafters of the 1970 Illinois Constitution, and

* the plain language of the constitution’s provision allowing voters to propose amendments.

“If you read the debates of the constitutional convention, it is clear that the drafters created an amendment initiative process to allow Illinoisans to propose changes in critical areas where legislators have too much self-interest and would resist change,” said Dennis FitzSimons, chairman of the IMA group. “Legislators currently can draw district boundaries to help their own chances of winning the next election, making redistricting a prime example of legislative self-interest where citizens need to step in and propose reform. It is up to the Illinois Supreme Court to restore the democratic rights of Illinoisans and let voters decide whether to amend their state constitution.”

IFB, Illinois League of Women Voters and several other groups helped collect nearly 600,000 Illinois voter signatures to put the question to voters on the November ballot. A group that calls itself the “People’s Map’ filed a lawsuit against the proposal, arguing the amendment must be limited to structural and procedural subjects. Earlier this summer, a Cook County Circuit Court judge agreed.

“To remove partisan politics from the redistricting process, the commission selection process must be insulated from partisan politics,” FitzSimons said. “If that’s not permitted, it will be impossible to give voters the right to the citizen initiative process envisioned by the framers of the constitution.”


BHE Foundation Seeks Nominations


The Black Hawk College East Foundation is accepting nominations for its Wall of Fame and Distinguished Service Awards.


Since 1992, the East Foundation has inducted 28 individuals into its prestigious Wall of Fame.


An additional 19 individuals and organizations have received the Distinguished Service Award.


To be considered for the Wall of Fame or Distinguished Service Award, nominees must meet one or more of the following criteria:

1.    Outstanding service to a community within the Black Hawk College District.

2.    Outstanding service or leadership to Black Hawk College East Campus.

3.    Noteworthy academic achievement or scholarship associated with Black Hawk College East Campus.

4.    Significant financial contribution to the Black Hawk College East Foundation.


The East Foundation changed its Wall of Fame program in 2014 to include the establishment of a scholarship, special project or grant in the name of those inducted into the Wall of Fame. Those inducted are recognized at a reception in their honor.


The deadline for nominations is Friday, Sept. 23.


Nominations forms are available online atwww.eastfoundation.bhc.edu and in the Foundation Office at the college’s East Campus, located five miles south of Kewanee.


For more information, contact Stacy Hertz in the Foundation Office at309-854-1718 or hertzst@bhc.edu.

Abilities Plus Achiever of the Month


Dustin Anderson of Kewanee received recognition by his peers as July's Achiever of the Month at Abilities Plus. He was nominated for this honor for positive efforts on a janitorial job. 

Proponents of automatic voter registration sound off after Rauner veto

Groups and lawmakers supporting automatic voter registration sound off after Governor Bruce Rauner vetoed the legislation. Rauner says he's in support of simplifying the registration process but he says the bill needs work and could lead to voter fraud and violate federal law with its current language. Rep. Carol Ammons believes there are other possible motivators for the veto...

The legislation would automatically register Illinoisans to vote when they get a drivers license. Rauner has also expressed concerns about cost. Representative Ammons hopes an override push is considered during the fall veto session.

Illinois traffic fatalities expected to hit four figures

Traffic fatalities are on the rise in Illinois. Safety and insurance industry experts believe say Illinois traffic fatalities will pass the one thousand mark this year for the first time since 2008. The combination of higher speeds, more miles driven and an influx of young drivers are seen as aggrivating factors in boosting the roadway mortality rate. At last report, highway fatalities stood at 629 for the year. That's an increase of 50 from last year's total. The National Safety Council blames the move to the 70 mile per hour sped limit on rural interstates for the increase.

Aetna leaving insurance exchange

There's a new defection from Illinois' Affordable Care Act health insurance exchange. Aetna has announced it's leaving next year, increasing concerns about reduced competition. Six companies will remain that sell plans for next year to individuals and families on the Illinois "Obamacare" marketplace. UnitedHealthcare previously announced it was leaving the exchange. Land of Lincoln Health is shutting down entirely. Aetna reports higher than expected costs, especially costly specialty drugs, spurred their decision to leave..

Frerichs hosting public hearings on life insurance

Illinois Treasurer Michael Frerichs wants to ensure life insurance policyholders get what's coming to them. He is hosting a series of public hearings around the state to discuss how life insurance companies avoid paying death benefits...

The first hearing is set for Wednesday in Normal. The state treasurer's office has dentified more than $550 million in unpaid death benefits owed to Illinois families.

Hog Festival Committee Meets Tonight

Hog Capital Barbecue, Inc. Meeting Agenda

Meeting Date: Tuesday, August 16, 2016 @ 7 p.m.

Unfinished Business

1. Gustafson quilt / helicopter ride help

2.    Stampede’s 40th year this year

3.    Vice chairpersons – updates and reports on events you oversee

4.    Front of building improvement project update.

5.    Carnival pre-sale tickets

6.    Our presence/involvement at the entertainment stage

7.    Roof repair plan update – Letter of Intent for People’s Bank

8.    Bathroom re-do project update


New Business

1.    2017 Tagline

2.    Supply List

3.    Work nights-specific to do items & get together times/dates


Reports/Questions/Comments/Other Business from Anyone

Motion to adjourn


        *Next regularly scheduled meetings are Tuesday 8/23 & 8/30, 2016 @ 7 p.m.

Mental Health Meeting Tonight

     The Henry and Stark County Health Department and the Stark County Citizen's Mental Health Task Force is inviting the public to attend the August Support Group for friends and family of people with mental illness.


    The next meeting will be held this evening from 6:00-7:30pm at the Henry and Stark County Health Departments, Rt. 78 South, Kewanee.


     Beth Smith is the coordinator for the program and she says "We encourage interested individuals to join with others dealing with the same struggles to share stories, offer encouragement and lend support"

Bustos Taking Intern Apps

ROCK ISLAND – Today, Congresswoman Cheri Bustos announced that she is accepting internship applications for her offices in Rock Island, Peoria, Rockford, and Washington, D.C.


“Internships are an invaluable opportunity for young people from our community to learn more about the work we do on behalf of families across Illinois' 17th Congressional District,” said Congresswoman Cheri Bustos. “It’s also an opportunity to give back to our region and to become involved in public service. I encourage all those interested to apply for an internship in one of my offices today.”


Applicants for the Washington, D.C. office should send a resume and cover letter to Mike.Williams@mail.house.gov with “Intern Application” in the subject line. Applicants for the offices in Illinois should send a cover letter and resume toLucie.VanHecke@mail.house.gov with “Intern Application” in the subject line. Admissions to the internship program are rolling.

Back To School Safety

It’s back to school time once again and that will certainly mean a different look to the landscape each day and it will also become a time where increased safety and awareness are also in order.

Kewanee Police Chief Jim Dison says that for the motoring public, those school children can be a bit of a challenge…

Chief Dison adds that students also need to be on the lookout as they head to and from school each day…

Chief Dison also addresses an age old problem which is traffic jams at drop off and pick up time at our local school districts…

Anti Gun Group To Protest in Geneseo

Advocates for reducing gun violence will demonstrate outside two local gun manufacturers as part of their cross-state Merchants of Death Protest Tour.

Lee Goodman, organizer for the volunteer group Peaceful Communities says  “The gun industry is making money by selling guns and ammunition that are causing enormous problems throughout our state and country, that industry should be held accountable for the damage its products are causing. If the gun industry had to pay for the damage it caused, as every other industry has to, there wouldn't be nearly as many accidental shootings, suicides, or criminals using guns, because the industry would have a financial incentive to produce safer products and conduct itself in a more responsible manner.”

In addition to holding the gun industry responsible for injuries, the protesters support a variety of proposals that would increase public safety, including requiring background checks for all gun purchases, bans on sales of military-style weapons to the public, increased enforcement of regulations on gun sellers, and greater restrictions on open and concealed carrying of weapons in public.

The group will be holding a protest this afternoon at the Springfield Armory in Geneseo from 2-3 and they will protest on Wednesday morning from 10 until 11 at Armalite in Geneseo.    

The series of demonstrations is the culmination of a summer-long campaign of protests. As the group travels across the state, it is also holding protests in Lockport, Coal City, Princeton, Oregon, and Geneva, Illinois.

HCSWCD Tree and Fish Sale

Henry County SWCD will be having their fall tree and fall fish sales once again this fall.

You can call the SWCD at 309-937-5263 Ext 3 for a brochure.  You may also view the brochures at www.henrycountyilswcd.com.


Fall Tree Orders Due: September 16th

Fall Fish Triploid Grass Carp Orders Due: October 11th

Fall Fish Orders Due: October 18th

Rain Barrels may be ordered at any time

Gov Talks to Fair Flood Victims

The Illinois State Fair has wrapped up the first weekend of events. And the fair turned out to be a soggy rain soaked mess on Friday night. More than 6 inches of rain fell on the grounds in about 3 hours causing rain water rush into a portion of Happy Hollow and flood campers and trucks parked there. But quick responses from the Department of Ag and first responders were a big reason that no one was hurt. Governor Bruce Rauner says he’s spoken to many of the families that lost their belongings and says he will help with any problems with insurance claims.

The grounds dried out some over the weekend but another big rainfall event is predicted today in Springfield. That could further hamper efforts to dry out wet spots around the grounds.

Hog Calling Contest Nets First Time Winner

It’s a far cry from the stateliness of the Masters – it’s the Illinois State Fair Husband and Hog calling contest. That was the winning hog call from a first time entrant. Andrew Metheny of Georgetown is 

The husband calling contest winner was Kelley Tierney of Cornland. She’s an old pro, winning 8 of the last 10. 

WKEI Open Line

A variety of topics hit the August 15 edition of the Open Line on WKEI

OSF On Tuned IN

Swing bed services are discussed during the August 15 edition of Tuned IN on WKEI

Sen Weaver/State Budget

That the state of Illinois is in a budget crisis is a bit of an understatement and one proposal not to mention fear is that Democrats in the state will force a tax increase on the public after the November elections.

 State Senator Chuck Weaver from the 37th District says that move is not out of the question…

Senator Weaver adds that a tax increase might be necessary short term, but historically, tax increases have not been the solution to the problem…

Senator Weaver says the issues on the fiscal side of the issue are somewhat similar…

TeamIllinois Youth Police Camp Chooses First Female as Top Cop


Collinsville, IL – Officials from the Illinois State Police (ISP) announce the first female Trooper has received the Top Cop award from the TeamIllinois Youth Police Camp (TYPC).  Trooper Omoayena Williams was chosen by the camp cadets as the Top Cop.  

The TYPC is an annual week-long residency camp for young men and women from the Metro East area.  The camp is based on a military model of discipline and includes para-military drills, physical fitness, team building exercises, and other life enhancing skills.  The primary purpose of the TYPC is to establish interpersonal relations between youth and law enforcement through mentoring and encouragement.  The 2016 camp was the 11th annual TYPC.  It started on July 10, and graduation ceremonies were held on July 16.

Each year at the conclusion of the TYPC, cadets choose one counselor as the Top Cop.  The Top Cop is chosen because the officer is devoted to duty, and their leadership abilities set a standard of excellence for others to emulate.  Although it was only her first year volunteering as a counselor at the camp, Trooper Williams was this year’s recipient of the Top Cop award

“I wanted to volunteer as a counselor at the youth camp because I understand the importance of having mentors and positive role models for young men and women,” stated Trooper Williams.  “I also volunteered because I want to let today’s youth know that if they set their minds to it, they can accomplish their goals,” she continued.  

Trooper Williams was born and raised in Nigeria.  She attended the University of Chicago and received a Bachelor of Art’s degree in Human Development in 2009.  In September of 2010 Trooper Williams reported to the ISP Academy as a member of Cadet Class 118.  She graduated in March 2011 and was assigned to District Chicago patrol.  Trooper Williams and her family still currently reside in Chicago.  

Travelling Wall

We are hosting the AVTT VIETNAM TRAVELING WALL  August 17-21 2016.  If you could read it as a community update or activity.  It is free to visit,  no charge for the entertainment,  food will be available for purchase.   


On Friday, August 19 from 1-3 pm there will be a free showing of Escape From Firebase Kate at Geneseo's Central Theatre.


It is a documentary based on Captain William Albracht's book Abandoned in Hell:The Fight for Vietnam's Firebase Kate.  Captain Albracht will be there to answer questions, he will also give the keynote address Friday evening in the park. 



The Zika virus is spreading fear and alarm in some areas of the country and in particular that fear extends to pregnant women.

Zika has not been an issue in our general area as of yet and RaeAnn Tucker, Public Information Director with the Henry and Stark County Health Departments says Zika has appeared in deep southern Illinois but no further north than that…

Ms. Tucker adds that controlling mosquitos is an all but impossible task but doing nothing is not a solution either…

Back to School Safety Tips


MOLINE, IL, August 11, 2016 — It’s almost time for the school bells to ring again and the American Red Cross has steps everyone can follow to help make the trip back to the classroom a safe one.


SCHOOL BUS SAFETY If children ride a bus to school, they should plan to get to their bus stop early and stand back from the curb while waiting for the bus to arrive. Other safety steps include:

·         Wait to board the bus until it has come to a complete stop and the driver or attendant has signaled to get on.

·         Tell children they should only board their bus - never an alternate one.

·         Always stay in clear view of the bus driver and never walk behind the bus.

·         Cross the street at the corner, obey traffic signals and stay in the crosswalk.

·         Never dart out into the street, or cross between parked cars.


GET TO SCHOOL SAFELY If children ride in a car to get to school, they should always wear a seat belt.

·         Younger children should use car seats or booster seats until the lap-shoulder belt fits properly (typically for children ages 8-12 and over 4’9”) and ride in the back seat until they are at least 13 years old.

·         If a teenager is driving to school, parents should mandate that he or she use seat belts. Drivers should not use their cell phone to text or make calls, and should avoid eating or drinking while driving.

·         Some students ride their bike to school. They should always wear a helmet and ride on the right in the same direction as the traffic is going.

·         When students are walking to school, they should only cross the street at an intersection. If possible, use a route with crossing guards.

·         Parents should walk young children to school, along with children taking new routes or attending new schools, at least for the first week to ensure they know how to get there safely. Arrange for the kids to walk to school with a friend or classmate.


WHAT DRIVERS SHOULD KNOW Drivers should know what the yellow and red bus signals mean and be aware that children are out walking or biking to school and slow down - especially in residential areas and school zones. Yellow flashing lights indicate the bus is getting ready to stop and motorists should slow down and be prepared to stop. Red flashing lights and an extended stop sign indicate the bus is stopped and children are getting on or off. Drivers in both directions must stop their vehicles and wait until the lights go off, the stop sign is back in place and the bus is moving before they can start driving again.


Parents should also make sure the child knows their phone number, address, how to get in touch with their parents at work, how to get in touch with another trusted adult and how to dial 9-1-1. They should also teach children not to talk to strangers or accept rides from someone they don’t know.

Red Adams Road Closed on Tuesday


The City of Kewanee has been notified that Ameren has scheduled work on Red Adams Road for Tuesday 8/16/16.  Ameren will be repairing a gas leak and will be closing the road to through traffic.  Residents are asked to avoid this area and to take caution if near the work zone area.


If questions, please contact City Hall at 852-2611 for further information.

Appeals Court Reverses ICC on Rock Island Clean Line

An Illinois Appellate Court reversed an Illinois Commerce Commission decision to allow a private company to potentially string more utility lines across northern Illinois. Texas-based Clean Line Energy Partners sought to construct and manage power lines across northern parts of the state from wind energy in four states to the west. A lawyer with the Illinois Farm Bureau, Laura Harmon, explains why the organization and some other landowners sought to overturn the I-C-C decision on the so-called Rock Island Clean Line project;

Harmon calls it "a landmark decision" that could have implications for other proposed transmission and pipeline projects in Illinois.

WKEI Open Line

A variety of topics are discussed during the August 12 edition of the Open Line on WKEI


Freedom House On Tuned IN

Trisha Shafer and Stefanie Morris from Freedom House talk about their services during the August 12 edition of Tuned IN on WKEI


Veteran’s Day at the 2016 Illinois State Fair

The Illinois Department of Veterans’ Affairs (IDVA) in cooperation with the Illinois Department of Agriculture, the Illinois State Fair and USAA invite veterans and their family members to enjoy a day at the Illinois State Fair on Sunday, August 14, 2016.  In addition to all the great activities, events, entertainment and food the Illinois State Fair has to offer, the following programs and events are planned for veterans at the Lincoln Stage, The Shed and adjacent area on the fairgrounds.

9:30 a.m.                               Memorial Service
144TH Army Band - 5 Star Brass Quintet
Lincoln Stage
10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.          IDVA Benefits Expo
The Shed
10:30 a.m. - 12:00 Noon      JROTC Exhibition Drill Team Competition
Armed and Unarmed
On street between Lincoln Stage and The Shed
10:30 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.        Kids’ Corner
Bounce House, Crafts, Face Painting, Balloon Animals
Near the Lincoln Stage
12:00 Noon - 1:15 p.m.        Official Program
Keynote Speaker – Dr. Ann E. Rondeau
President College of DuPage, Vice Admiral (ret) United States Navy
144TH Army Band - 5 Star Brass Quintet
Lincoln Stage
1:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.            Lunch
Served to Veterans and Families • Sponsored by USAA
The Shed
1:15 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.                        Kids’ Corner
Bounce House, Crafts, Face Painting, Balloon Animals
Near the Lincoln Stage

1:30 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.            JROTC Exhibition Drill Team Competition
Armed and Unarmed
On street between Lincoln Stage and The Shed
3:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.            Musical Entertainment
Cicero Sisters
Lincoln Stage
3:30 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.            JROTC Drill Competition Awards Ceremony
Lincoln Stage
5:00 p.m.                                Veterans Day Parade
Illinois & Grandstand Ave.

The IDVA Veteran’s Benefit Expo, held inside the building called The Shed, includes information, services and activities for veterans and family members with the IDVA, state and federal agencies, veteran service organizations and Illinois Joining Forces will be open until 4 pm.

The IDVA will highlight the work of the IDVA Employee of the Year as well as to recognize and thank a distinguished Veteran and a distinguished Business for above and beyond the call of duty in assisting other Veterans.

The Illinois Department of Veterans’ Affairs Veterans will host a “Welcome Home” celebration for all Vietnam Veterans.  The celebration is to thank and honor veterans of the Vietnam War, including personnel who were held as prisoners of war, or listed as missing in action, for their service and sacrifice on behalf of the United States, and to thank and honor the families of these veterans.  Veterans who served in the military service between the years of 1955 and 1975 will be presented a 50th Anniversary Commemorative lapel pin.

The Veterans’ Day at the Illinois State Fair is supported by USAA and all major Veteran Service Organization, with thanks to the State Fair Committee for their time, efforts and energies in making this event possible.

The IDVA will announce a major new Volunteer Program that will occur on Veteran’s Day, November 11, 2016.

Media are welcome to attend and advance publicity of the event is appreciated.  For additional information, please contact Dave MacDonna, IDVA Spokesperson – Dave.MacDonna@illinois.gov or 217-524-0629.

BHC mourns passing of former trustee John Ahern

Black Hawk College extends its condolences to the family of John Ahern, former Black Hawk College trustee who passed away Monday, Aug. 8.

“Trustee Ahern was very passionate about his service to Black Hawk College and was a true advocate for the entire district,” said David Emerick, chair of the Black Hawk College Board of Trustees.

“John always had the students first when making decisions on programs and future development. He was a mentor to many trustees on the board and was very willing to provide assistance to make sure the right outcome was achieved.”

Ahern was first elected to the Black Hawk College Board of Trustees in November 1995. He was re-elected in 2001 and 2007 and served until May 2012.

During his tenure, he served as the board’s representative to the Black Hawk College Quad-Cities Foundation and the Black Hawk College East Foundation.

Ahern was active in community college trustee issues at the state level.

He received the 2003 Ray Hartstein Trustee Achievement Award from the Illinois Community College Trustees Association (ICCTA). The award is presented to a community college board member whose exemplary service and leadership sets the standard for outstanding trusteeship in Illinois.

Ahern received the 2004 Association of Community College Trustees (ACCT) Trustee Leadership Award for the Central Region. He was nominated by the ICCTA for the leadership award after receiving the Hartstein award.

He also was a two-time recipient of the ICCTA’s Trustee Education Award for participating in 15 or more ICCTA-sponsored seminars.

John Ahern’s dedication and service to the college and the community is deeply appreciated.

Butter Cow Back Again

She’s back at the Illinois State Fair. The Butter Cow has returned for another year at the fair. The Showcase cooler that the cow spins around in says a tradition since 1922 but there are changes for this year. The sculptress is new, Sarah Pratt takes over for Sharon BuMann. Pratt’s first creation in Illinois is a 700 pound Jersey Cow.

You may not know that the butter used to make the cow is reused for years. But this new butter was donated. Pratt says that makes it a little more difficult to work with. In all she spent about 65 hours in the cooler creating the cow. 

Immunization Month


    The Henry County Health Department is announcing that August has been designated National Immunization Awareness Month.  The goal of National Immunization Awareness Month is to increase awareness about immunizations across the life span, from infants to the elderly.


    Sandy Sommer, RN Clinical Services Supervisor with the Health Department states, "August is the perfect time to remind family, friends, co-workers, and those in the community to catch up on their vaccinations.  Parents are enrolling their children in school, students are entering college, and healthcare workers are preparing for the upcoming flu season."


    Immunization is one of the most significant public health achievements of the 20th century.  Vaccines have eradicated smallpox, eliminated wild poliovirus in the US and significantly reduced the number of cases of measles, diphtheria, rubella, pertussis and other diseases.  But despite these efforts, today tens of thousands of people in the US still die from these and other vaccine-preventable diseases.


    Vaccines offer safe and effective protection from infectious diseases.  By staying up-to-date on the recommended vaccines, individuals can protect themselves, their families and friends and their communities from serious, life-threatening infections.


    Sommer adds, "Getting immunized is a lifelong, life-protecting community effort regardless of age, sex, race, ethnic background or country of origin.  Recommended vaccinations begin soon after birth and continue throughout life.  Being aware of the vaccines that are recommended for infants, children, adolescents, adults of all ages and seniors, and making sure that we receive these immunizations, are critical to protecting ourselves and our communities from disease."


    Because children are particularly vulnerable to infection, most vaccines are given during the first five to six years of life.  Other immunizations are recommended during adolescent or adult years and, for certain vaccines, booster vaccination are recommended throughout life.  Vaccines against certain diseases that may be encountered when traveling outside the US are recommended for travelers to specific regions of the world.


    The Health Department Clinical services staff reminds area residents that immunizations can be obtained through the Health Departments' clinic offices in Kewanee and Colona by appointment.  Please note, the Department has all required immunizations as private pay vaccines. Please call for eligibility, costs, and for vaccine availability.


     For more information on the Health Departments' Immunization program call the Department at (309) 852-5272 (Kewanee) 852-3115 (Stark) or 792-4011 (Colona) or visit our website at www.henrystarkhealth.com

Consolidation Info

The school consolidation issue in Kewanee will appear on the November ballot and today we will present another look at that situation in a manner that we hope the public will see as informative and unbiased.

The Committee of Ten is a proponent of consolidation and Committe Member Sam Harker Rux is joined by fellow Committee Member Lori Christiansen as they outline what they consider to be some advantages of a potential consolidation…

Ms. Christiansen also addresses the importance of additional vocational courses…

Ms. Christiansen adds that there are also potential advantages for those students that will be going to college…

On the other side of the issue is the Wethersfield School District and Supt of Schools Mr. Shane Kazubowski, who has worked hard to maintain a neutral stance says he can appreciate all of the hard work the Committee of Ten has put in on this matter…

Mr. Kazubowski adds that at Wethersfield, they have also heard from both current and former students about the matter…

Mr. Kazubowski also notes some advantages for those students that will go on to college after their time at Wethersfield…

       Once again, the issue of consolidation in Kewanee will be voted on by residents in both districts on November 8.

Voters on both districts must approve the issue separately or the current set up of the two school districts will continue

Abillities Plus Golf Outing



Kewanee, IL – Abilities Plus hosted its 25th annual golf outing on Aug. 1, 2016 at Kewanee Dunes.  The full event fielded 36 teams.


Three teams shot a 60 in this year’s best ball tournament, with Team McMahill coming in first on a card back.  Team members included Tom McMahill, Jayme Hopping, Greg Smith and Bill Ellis.  The Office Specialist team of Randy Conlon, Greg Wertheim and Zack Crowl came in second, and Court Marshall’s Team of Court Marshall, Karl Bruning, Kyle Graham and Tom Burhorn were third.


Hole event winners included Carol Blake with the women’s longest drive, Chris Colomer with longest putt, Scott VanOpdorp was closest to the pin, and Chris Gustafson had the men’s longest drive.


Because of the generosity of local businesses that sponsored the event and provided prizes, along with many dedicated volunteers and golfers, this is one of the largest fundraisers for the organization.  All proceeds fund services for children and adults with developmental disabilities in Henry, Stark and western Bureau Counties.

Special Council Session



Council Chambers


A City of Choice

401 E Third Street


Kewanee, Illinois 61443

Open Meeting starting at 7:00 p.m.

Monday, August 15, 2016





1.              Call to Order

2.              Pledge of Allegiance

3.              Citizen Participation

4.              Business:

a.    Opening and Approval of bids for sale of the vacant lot at 517 Roosevelt Avenue.

b.    Opening and Approval of bids for sale of the vacant lot at 603 E Third Street.

5.              Council Communications:


6.              Announcements:        


7.              Adjournment

IDoA hosts Senior Day at Illinois State Fair



Springfield  The Illinois Department on Aging (IDoA) will host a variety of activities for seniors, their families and friends during Senior Day at the Illinois State Fair. The event is open to the public and adults age 60 and older will receive complimentary admittance into the fair. A booth with additional information about IDoA and the programs and services it provides will also be available. Senior Day will be held beginning at 9am on Monday, August 15th.


When: Monday, August 15, 10:45 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.


Where: Illinois Building, Illinois State Fairgrounds


What: Senior Day at the Illinois State Fair


· 10:45AM: Welcome & Introduction by Paul Palazzolo

      Remarks from Director Poe & Director Bohnhoff


· 11:00AM: Presentation of the 2015 Outstanding Caregiver of the Year Award to Sharon Rigler of Pekin

     and Sandra Foster of Washington.


· 11:05AM: NOT SO Newlywed Game – sponsored by Central Illinois Senior Celebration


o Cash prizes of $100 and $50 will be awarded to first and second place respectively


1:00PM: 2016 Illinois Senior Spelling Bee Finals – sponsored by Assoc. of Illinois Senior Centers &





When: Thursday, August 18, 2 p.m. – 4 p.m.


Where: Illinois Building, Illinois State Fairgrounds


What: Grandparent/Grandchild – sponsored by Springfield Supportive Living


· Cash prizes of $150, $100, and $50 will be awarded to the first, second, and third place respectively


State Fair Kicks Off

The Illinois State Fair is underway, beginning its ten day run today (Friday). After you get your fill of elephant ears and deep fried snicker bars, head over to the commodities pavilion, across from the grandstand, for some real food brought to you by the Illinois Pork Producers, Beef Producers and Lamb and Wool Producers.
Mike Borgic of the IPPA says, as usual they have a great menu at the Pork Pavilion.

In addition to the food, the pork producers will have their birthing center on the fairgrounds where fairgoers can see baby pigs being born and see how pork producers take care of their animals.

Mike Borgic of the Illinois Pork Producers. Also in the commodities building Rita Fr4aser and DeLoss Janke will be broadcasting live Friday, Monday and Tuesday on the stage.

State Fair Kicks Off Today

The Illinois State Fair officially opens on Friday but the event’s unofficial kick off has always been Thursday night when the grounds are full after the Twilight Parade. New State Fair Manger Kevin Gordon says there will be a few changes this year. That includes an increase to the fair admission price of $10 for adults but kids 12 and under are now free. Gordon says they added lots of little things to the fair for 2016, so many that he may not be able to think of them all at once.

The fair officially opens on Friday with the cutting of a ribbon at the main gate. The fair runs for 10 days ending on Sunday August 21.

Wethersfield on PTP

Wethersfield Supt of Schools Mr. Shane Kazubowski and High School Principal Mr. Jeremiah Johnston talk about the new school year during the August 12 edition of People to People on WKEI


WKEI Open Line

The Olympics and Abraham Lincoln are discussed during the August 11 edition of the Open LIne on WKEI

HCFB Breaks Ground On New Building

The Henry County Farm Bureau in Cambridge recently broke ground on a new building.

Farm Bureau Manager Katie Laleman says it’s an exciting time for them…

Ms. Laleman adds that if all goes well, they should be in the new building by the end of 2016…

Ms. Laleman adds that with the great growing season for area crops, an early harvest is not out of the question…

IL Adds Jobs


ROSELAND, NJ--(Marketwired - Aug 10, 2016) - The State of Illinois added 8,200 private sector jobs during the month of July, according to theADP Regional Employment Report which is produced by ADP®, a leading global provider of Human Capital Management (HCM) solutions, in collaboration with Moody's Analytics, Inc. Broadly distributed to the public each month, free of charge, the ADP Regional Employment Reportmeasures the change in regional and state nonfarm private employment each month on a seasonally adjusted basis.


July 2016 Report Highlights

Changes in Illinois State Nonfarm Private Employment: 8,200*

·         By Sector * 

o    Goods-producing -600 

o    Service-providing 8,800 

·         By Select Industries

o    Natural Resources/Mining and Construction -200 

o    Manufacturing -400

o    Professional and Business Services 2,600

o    Trade, Transportation and Utilities 400 

* Sum of components may not equal total, due to rounding.


The August 2016 ADP Regional Employment Report will be released at 9:00 a.m. ET on Thursday, September 8, 2016. A full publishing calendar can be found at www.ADPemploymentreport.com.


Additional data on other states, including jobs data by sector and select industries is available at www.ADPemploymentreport.com

Great Dane Announces Annual Scholarship Winners


(Savannah, Georgia – August 2, 2016) – Great Dane recently named four children of Great Dane employees winners of its 2016 college scholarships. The scholarships recognize Blake TomanConnor Cross, Allyson House and Alyssa Yocom for their outstanding academic achievements. The four were selected from a large number of nationwide applicants.


Great Dane annually awards one four-year scholarship of $1,000 per year and three two-year scholarships of $1,000 per year. Children of Great Dane employees nationwide are eligible. Scholarship winners are selected from graduating high school seniors based on several categories, including grade point average (GPA), Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) or American College Testing Program (ACT) scores, honors received, extracurricular activities, community service and work experience.



Blake Toman, son of Jeff Toman, corporate controller at the Great Dane’s Chicago corporate office, won the four-year scholarship valued at $4,000. He graduated from Academy of Higher Learning Homeschool where he was a member of the debate, golf and varsity soccer teams. He also served as president of the 4-H Club and hosted a student exchange program. Blake plans to attend Patrick Henry College in Purcellville, Virginia, where he will major in economics and business analytics.


Connor Cross, son of David Cross, PC technician I at the Great Dane Wayne plant, was awarded a two-year scholarship valued at $2,000. He graduated from Laurel-Conford-Coleridge High School where he was a member of the choir, track and field team, student council and National Honor Society. He also served as president of the science club and treasurer of the Future Business Leaders of America. Connor plans to attend the University of Nebraska Omaha where he will major in electrical engineering.


Allyson House, daughter of Timothy House, CATIA engineer II at the Great Dane Brazil plant, was awarded a two-year scholarship valued at $2,000. She graduated from Terre Haute South Vigo High School where she was a member of the key club, student senate and National Honor Society. She also served as a peer educator and yearbook captain. Allyson plans to attend Indiana State University in Terre Haute, Indiana.


Alyssa Yocom, daughter of Steven Yocom, product engineering manager at the Great Dane Brazil plant, was awarded a two-year scholarship valued at $2,000. She graduated from Clay City High School where she was captain of the softball and basketball teams and a member of the varsity volleyball team. She was also a recipient of the Scholar Athlete Award. Alyssa plans to attend Indiana State University in Terre Haute, Indiana, where she will major in athletic training.



Great Dane Announces Dealer Scholarship Winners

(Savannah, Georgia – August 2, 2016) – Great Dane recently named two children of Great Dane full-line dealership employees winners of its 2016 college scholarships for full-line dealers. The scholarships recognizeMary Gilmore and Teaghan Hignett for their outstanding academic achievements.


Great Dane annually awards two $1,000 scholarships to children of Great Dane full-line dealership employees. Scholarship winners are selected from graduating high school seniors based on several categories, including grade point average (GPA), Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) or American College Testing Program (ACT) scores, honors received, extracurricular activities, community service and work experience.



Mary Gilmore, daughter of Jerry Mickey, regional accounting manager at Missouri Great Dane Trailers, graduated from Brentwood High School where she served as vice president of the student body and captain of the volleyball team. She plans to attend the University of Missouri Columbia where she will major in physical therapy.


Teaghan Hignett, daughter of Mike Hignett, equipment remarketing manager for Glasvan Great Dane Sales, graduated from Garth Webb Secondary School where she played volleyball, basketball, rugby, soccer and softball. Teaghan plans to attend the University of Western Ontario where she will major in health sciences.


About Great Dane

Great Dane is the leading manufacturer of high-performance commercial transportation equipment, including dry and refrigerated trailers and truck bodies, as well as steel, aluminum and combo platform trailers. Great Dane has a storied history in the commercial trucking industry and is a driving force in trailer technology, innovation, quality and customer service. Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, and with additional corporate offices in Savannah, Georgia, Great Dane has manufacturing plants strategically located throughout the United States. The company’s network of corporate-owned branches, full-line independent dealers and parts-only independent dealers offers a broad range of distribution points for new and used trailers as well as aftermarket services across North and South America. Visit Great Dane online at www.greatdanetrailers.com.

Illinois Department of Labor preparing for start of Illinois State Fair


Springfield—August 10, 2016. In anticipation of the kickoff of the Illinois State Fair, the Illinois Department of Labor is conducting routine inspections of all amusement rides and attractions today and for the duration of the fair. The Department is also launching two safety education exhibits—one focused on manufacturing and the other on agriculture. 


IDOL’s Amusement Rides and Attraction Safety Division inspects all rides and attractions that are open to the public at least once a year. Amusement Ride and Attraction Safety Inspectors conduct nearly 4,000 ride inspections at stationary parks, traveling carnivals or fairs throughout the state each year. The Department issues permits to operate only after an inspection determines the ride or attraction meets safety requirements.


            Illinois Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), a division of IDOL, is teaming up with Elgin Area School District U46 and Sandvik Coromant Productivity Center of Schaumburg to showcase workplace safety in the manufacturing industry. The engaging exhibit that is located in the Governor’s Tent highlights workplace safety tools with downloadable smartphone apps and hands-on protective gear. Metal cutting e-learning and other vocational training will also be promoted.


            For the interactive agricultural exhibit, IDOL is partnering with the U.S. Department of Labor OSHA and the Illinois Fire Service Institute to demonstrate tractor and lawnmower rollover rescues. To raise awareness of farm safety, the exhibit will allow fair attendees to participate in a simulated rescue of crash test dummy under an actual rolled over tractor. The IDOL Tent is next to the Illinois Department of Agriculture Tent and across from the Food-A-Rama.


            “Manufacturing and agriculture have long been the backbone of Illinois’ economy,” said IDOL Director Hugo Chaviano. “With these two educational exhibits, we hope to promote workplace safety both during the fair and long afterwards.”


For more information about the Illinois Department of Labor, visit the website at labor.illinois.gov. IDOL can also be found on Facebook at Facebook.com/ILDeptofLabor or on Twitter @ILDeptofLabor.

OASIS Family Aquatic Center to Close This Weekend

The Oasis Family Aquatic Center in Kewanee will close for the season this coming weekend.

Brian Johnson is the Director of Parks and Recreation with the Kewanee Park District and he says that Saturday will be the last day to swim for the general public per se’ with a special event planned for Sunday…

Brian adds that there is no admission charge for Sunday’s event and it’s just a neat way to cap off the swimming season…

Once the swimming season is in the books, then the off season pool maintenance season will kick in…

Davis calls for transfer of Ebola funds to deal with Zika

Congressman Rodney Davis is once again beating the drum for those who want to shift dollars devoted to the past Ebola crisis to the newest infectious disease threat, Zika. The Taylorville Republican says the move of millions would be a no brainer...

The Illinois Department of Public Health reported that there were 46 cases in Illinois last week.

Southern Illinois baseball bat producer lands Tebow

It's the little bat company that could. Dinger Bats is based in the small Southeastern Illinois town of Ridgway, in Gallatin County. The town no longer has the popcorn plant that led to it being called the Popcorn Capital of the World, but Dinger is producing bats with pop and that has led stars like Kyle Schwarber of the Cubs to begin using their bats. Now, former Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow is trying to shift his focus from football to pro baseball, and Dinger is his bat of choice. Dinger managing partner Kyle Drone explains how the former University of Florida quarterback wound up with a Dinger bat in his hands....

Drone says Dinger sales have grown since Schwarber blasted a baseball to the top of the Wrigley Field video board in last year's playoffs...

Drone has made a name for himself on the diamond, taking part in the world's longest baseball game last year. Guiness Book of World Records officials confirmed that game last 70 hours, 9 minutes and 23 seconds. Drone plans to extend that record next year in Sauget, Illinois.

State Goes Paperless for Some Vendor Services

Governor Bruce Rauner has consistently said that he wants Illinois to become a better place to do business. Now a step being taken by an agency will allow people wanting to do business with the state to make that a little easier. The state is creating on online certification program that eliminates having to fill out actual paper forms. After working online those vendors can then track their progress to approval says state spokesperson Meredith Krantz.

For business looking to work with the state – check out opportunities dot Illinois dot gov.

Blagojevich sentence left as is

Emotions ran high in a Chicago federal courtroom as Judge James Zagel ruled former Governor Rod Blagojevich will not have his 14 year federal prison term shortened. Blagojevich was being resentenced after 5 of his 18 corruption convictions were tossed out. As Zagel announced his ruling, Blagojevich could be seen on screen bowing his head before he collapsed back into his seat. In the courtroom, his two daughters sobbed. Blagojevich attorney Leonard Goodman said the decision of whether to appeal will be up to Blagojevich. The high court refused to consider Blagojevich's corruption conviction earlier this year. Former first lady Patty Blagojevich offered her own critique of Zagel's decision ..

Blagojevich's brother Robert Blagojevich offered his own critique, comparing the sentence to other corruption related convictions...


Hammond Henry Hospital CEO Jeff Lingerfelt discusses the various programs at HHH during the August 10 edition of People to People on WKEI

WKEI Open Line

Former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich is discussed during the August 10 edition of the Open LIne on WKEI

HCFB on Tuned IN

FB Manager Katie Laleman updates Farm Bureau programs during the August 10 edition of Tuned IN on WKEI

Senior Living Series Continues This Afternoon


    The Henry and Stark County Health Department, the Stark County Citizens' Mental Health Task Force, and Petersen Health Care remind area residents they are once again sponsoring a special Senior Living Series.  The Senior Living Series is a schedule of informational programs aimed to give the latest, up-to-date information, to our area senior population.


    The August program will be "Tanner’s Orchard-An Amazing Country Farm Experience” by Ben Beaver, of Tanner’s Orchard; and "Living Well, Being Well" by a staff member from the Central Illinois Area Agency on Aging.  This informative program will be held Wednesday, August 10th at 2:00pm at the Bradford Courtyard Estates.


     Mr. Beaver’s program will focus the history and present day activities and events at Tanner’s Orchard in Speer, IL.  Tanner’s is a popular seasonal destination for many area families, groups and individuals. Following Beaver’s program, a representative from the Central Illinois Area Agency on Aging will speak on wellness strategies as we age. 

    Remember, refreshments will be served and a door prize will be given out at each Senior Living Series session.


    For more information about the upcoming Stark County Senior Living Series you may contact Beth Smith at the Stark County Health Department at (309) 852-0197 or visit our website at www.henrystarkhealth.com or find us on Facebook at Henry and Stark County Health Departments of Follow Us On Twitter.

City Of Kewanee Info

The City of Kewanee has received some recent criticism from some members of the community about the lack of timely maintenance in the Pleasantview Cemetery.

Mayor Steve Looney acknowledges the city got behind just a little bit and he also says he fully understands why people would be a little bit upset…

City Council on Monday night passed separate measures relative to the City’s Economic Plan and Neighborhood Revitalization Plan.

Mayor Looney says the plans are solid blueprints for future development…

Mayor Looney says the revitalization plan is also a solid plan that should help the city move forward…

Wildlife, Habitat, Fishing and Smokey Bear Highlight Family Fun at Conservation World during Illinois State Fair


SPRINGFIELD, IL – Free activities for children and families will give Illinois State Fair visitors a chance to sample the great outdoors in Illinois at Conservation World at this year’s state fair on Aug. 12-21 in Springfield.


Conservation World is a 30-acre park with grass, shade trees, and ponds located on the northwest corner of the Illinois State Fairgrounds. Conservation World is easily accessible through a pedestrian gate near the Junior Livestock Building, and via a state fair tram stop next to the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) headquarters.


“The tradition continues at Conservation World, with plenty to do for kids interested in spending time outdoors, and great ideas for families looking to spend time together,” said IDNR Director Wayne Rosenthal. 


Traditional free activities for youth at Conservation World include kids fishing clinics at the pond inside the Conservation World gate, with all bait and tackle provided; and, archery and BB gun practice ranges for youth that are hosted by IDNR shooting sports experts and safety education instructors and volunteers.


IDNR wildlife, fisheries and natural heritage staffs will host displays and answer questions about wildlife watching, fishing and hunting prospects, habitat enhancement projects, and programs that are available to assist private landowners. The IDNR Division of Education will help children learn about saving species, including monarch butterflies and pollinators. 


State fair visitors can purchase Illinois fishing and hunting licenses and learn about the duties of a Conservation Police officer at the IDNR Law Enforcement tent, while the Division of Forest Resources invites families to keep an eye out for Smokey Bear while talking with foresters about trees and tree care.  Experts from the Illinois Green Industry Association can answer questions on at-home habitats and landscaping from the IGIA gazebo at the center of Conservation World.


Daily fly fishing instruction and weekend Voyageur canoe rides are also free activities for all ages at Conservation World. Pick up the latest edition of the Illinois State Parks guide, and enter


to win an outdoor adventure package with purchase of a deer, turkey or morel lapel pin at the Illinois Sportsmen Against Hunger Information Tent.


Food and drink vendors at Conservation World will include southern Illinois’ famed 17th Street Barbeque, Vose corn dogs, ice cream, kettle corn, shaved ice, and homemade root beer.


Illinois State Fair admission includes free admission to Conservation World, which is open daily from 10 a.m. until 7 p.m. on Aug. 12 through Aug. 21. 

Pie, Vikings, Wheat Weavers, and more at the Clay and Fiber Fest


For Clay and Fiber Fest on August 13 and 14, the Bishop Hill Heritage Association is hosting not one, not two, but three events as part of this annual festival in Bishop Hill, IL.

The Vikings are coming to Bishop Hill on Saturday, August 13th from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and on Sunday, August 14th from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.  in the village park.  This Nordic Market will present everyday scenes from the Viking Age.  It will feature costumed interpreters in an accurate Anglo-Scandinavian encampment of the eleventh century.  Demonstrations will be held on textiles, gaming, woodworking, book binding, moneying and more, from their encampment in the Village Park.  This free encampment is by Micel Folcland.

At the same time each day, free wheat weaving demonstrations by the Illinois Association of Wheat Weavers will be held in the Steeple Building Museum, where you will be taught techniques on transforming wheat straw into delicate works of art.  Recent works will be displayed and will be available to purchase.

From 1-4 p.m. on Saturday, finish your day with ice cream and pie with a drink, for just $5 at the Pie in the Park ice cream social in the village park.  Proceeds from this fundraiser support BHHA activities.

For more details about these events and other Clay and Fiber activities, please call 309 927-3899 or email bhha@mymctc.net .


Silvis Main Street Announces 15th Annual Silvis Moonlight Parade & Festival

SILVIS, Illinois – Silvis Main Street is announcing the 15th Annual Silvis Moonlight Parade & Festival. The event will take place on Saturday, August 27.

The theme this year is “Honoring Our Heroes”, according to Silvis Main Street Director Christie Schilling.

“This year’s theme is about honoring those who have given their lives to serving others. We honor heroes like George Washington, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Mother Theresa, and we honor our Heroes of Hero Street, our veterans, our coaches, our police officers, our teachers, our firefighters, and even our moms and dads.”


8:00 A.M.

Festivities begin with the Silvis 5K Home Run starting at Schadt Park.

2:00 P.M.

Craft vendors and Food vendors will open for customers.

2:00-6:00 P.M.

The Silvis Moonlight Cruisers will rev up the annual car show behind Frank’s Pizza at 711 1st Avenue.

3:00-7:00 P.M.

Sing along with our live band, “Crossroads”, at the 12th Street stage.

6:00-7:00 P.M.

The Kid Crew Dancing team will be performing.

7:00 P.M.

The Zinna Princess Crowning will take place.

8:00 P.M.

Step-off for the Best Lighted Parade in the Quad Cities.

Be sure to check out the Free Kids Zone with an obstacle course, a bouncy house, a petting zoo, free face painting, free games, and Balloon Art with Laura from Clown Around.

FREE SHUTTLE PARKING (two locations):

3:30-10:00 P.M.

PICK-UP at Walmart Parking Lot, DROP-OFF at Pro Build

5:00-10:00 P.M.

PICK-UP at Old John Deere Foundry, DROP-OFF at 9th Street, Silvis

Local Lawmakers Hosting Senior Services Event

US Congressman Rodney Davis, US Congressman Darin LaHood along with State Representative Dan Brady will be hosting a special senior services seminar this week in Normal.

Congressman Davis explains the three lawmakers will at the Normal Township Activity and Recreation Area Thursday from 9:30 am to 11:30 am with local, state and federal resources will be on hand providing information to seniors about local resources.

Vendors include AARP, Bloomington and Normal Police Departments, the Comptroller, VA, Secretary of State and State Treasurers offices along with Medicare, Connect Transit adn Advocate Bromenn. Davis says this is something that has been popular in the past.

The Illinois Attorney General's office, Medicare and Social Security will make presentations as a part of the event.

It is free and open to the public. Again it is Thursday from 9:30 am to 11:30 am at the Normal Normal Township Activity and Recreation Center at 600 East Willow Street in Normal.

Questions about the event can be directed to Congressman Davis' office by calling 309-252-8834.

Held Steps Into National Spotlight

One Olympic swimmer has won more than gold in Rio. Springfield’s Ryan Held brought home that medal on Saturday night but also won over the hearts of millions of Americans when he broke down on the podium during the National Anthem. Held’s been on NBC’s Today, NBC’s evening news and ABC’s Good Morning America. Held says that he had so much to think about and be grateful for that he couldn’t keep his emotions in check.

Held says he was 16th or so in the nation about a year ago. Since then he’s claimed a spot on the USA Swim Team and won a gold medal. Held is currently a sophomore at North Carolina State.

Held – speaking to NBC’s Lester Holt, says afterwards Michael Phelps who’s won 23 Olympic Medals was making sure Held was enjoying the moment.

Time To Vac the Kids

Back to school can also mean back to the doctor. The Illinois Department of Public Health wants mom’s and dad’s to pay attention to the changes coming to school vaccination programs. Assistant Public Health Director Don Kauerauf (CARE-OFF) says changes are here and you are better off to be prepared so no time is missed getting your kids enrolled in school.

Keep those records handy. Parents need to be able to show them to schools so kids cn be admitted and stay in school after they have had their shots.

Mayor Steve Looney on PTP

Mayor Steve Looney discusses city business during the August 9 edition of People to People on WKEI


WKEI Open Line

Amusement Parks are discussed during the August 9 edition of the Open Line on WKEI

Food Safety Info


    The Henry and Stark County Health Departments note that refrigerators and freezers are two of the home's most indispensable servants.  Therefore, when the power fails, or when the appliance breaks down, we often panic.  If your power goes out, knowing what to do with the food in your refrigerator and freezer can help you stay healthy.  The last thing you need after a weather emergency is a case of food poisoning.


    If your power fails, the Health Department reminds you that all need not be lost, and suggests the following hints to help you keep your cool.


    * If the power fails, always keep the refrigerator and freezer doors closed.  Never open them just to "check things out."  You'll lose precious cool air, and make matter worse.


    * If you choose to place ice in and around refrigerator items, make certain you also insert enough containers to catch what melts, and don't allow foods to sit in water for any length of time.


    Dorothy David, Health Department Director of Environmental Health Services, notes "An unopened full freezer will keep foods frozen for up to 2 full days.  If it's necessary to add ice to the freezer, make certain you handle it only with adequate ventilation and while wearing protective gloves." 


    David adds, "When power is restored, check all foods, fresh or frozen, to determine safety.  Discard any food that has a unusual odor, color, or texture, or feels warm to the touch.  Remember the saying, "When in doubt, throw it out."


    For more information of food safety, contact the Environmental Health Division of the Henry and Stark County Health Department at(309) 852-0197 or 792-4011 (Henry) or 852-3115 (Stark) or visit our website at www.henrystarkhealth.com or find us on Facebook at Henry and Stark County Health Departments or Follow Us on Twitter.


Hog Festival Committee Meets Tonight

The 63rd annual Hog Days begins three weeks from Friday and the Hog Festival Committee will meet this evening 7 o’clock at the Hog Building, 306 North Main Street, Kewanee IL

The opening of meat bid letters and the setting of sandwich prices is scheduled as the first items of business so any visitors from organizations submitting bids won't have to sit through a long meeting listening to stuff they aren't that interested in!

Acceptance of and place on file Secretary’s Report

Acceptance of and place on file pending audit Treasurer’s Report

Visitors –


Opening and acceptance of a butterfly bid and a pork patty bid

Setting of the 2016 price of butterfly chop sandwiches and pork patty sandwiches at Hog Days


Unfinished Business

1.    U.S. Army appearance at Hog Days.

2.    Food concessions. Anything new to report?

3.    Flea Market/Craft Show. Anything new to report?

4.    Front door & front of building improvement project update.

5.    Carnival pre-sale tickets

6.    Our presence/involvement at the entertainment stage

7.    Golf carts for Hog Days?


New Business

1.    Roof repair plan update – tax exempt & next steps in securing bank loan

2.    Buns for Hog Days

3.    Supply List

4.    Work nights-specific to do items & get together times/dates


Reports/Questions/Comments/Other Business from Anyone

Motion to adjourn


FYI: *Henry Co. Veterans Assistance next to Hog House on Green space

        *Next regularly scheduled meetings are Tuesday 8/16, 8/23 & 8/30, 2016 @ 7 p.m.

IDoA hosts Senior Day during the Illinois State Fair Complimentary admission for adults 60 years of age and older


Springfield  On Monday, August 15th, the Illinois Department on Aging (IDoA) will host a variety of activities for seniors, their families and friends during Senior Day at the Illinois State Fair. Events hosted by IDoA will be held in the air-conditioned Illinois Building located near the fairground main gate. Attendees 60 years of age and older will receive free admittance into the fair.


In addition to the Senior Day activities, IDoA will be holding a Grandparent/Grandchild contest on August 18th at2pm in the Illinois Building. Participants will be judged on resemblance, costumes, talent and interviews and cash prizes will be awarded.


“We always look forward to participating in the Illinois State Fair. Thanks to our innovative staff and partner agencies, our activities are the perfect blend of fun and informative. They provide families with an opportunity to bond over entertaining games while learning more about the various programs and services available to older adults and their families through our Department,” said IDoA Director Jean Bohnhoff.


Among the many events taking place on Senior Day, IDoA is bringing back some fan favorites, including the “NOT SO Newlywed Game,” where couples ages 50 and older test how much they really know about their spouse, and the Illinois Senior Spelling Bee State Finals, where regional Senior Bee champions from across the state will square off.


Director Bohnhoff will also present awards to two of our 2015 Outstanding Caregiver award recipients – Sharon Rigler of Pekin and Sandra Foster from Washington. Sharon and Sandra are being recognized for their exemplary work; their dedication to and compassion for their clients is a testament to their selflessness and character. IDoA is pleased to present Sharon and Sandra with a plaque and a personal letter from Governor Rauner acknowledging their contributions.


Seniors and their families are encouraged to take advantage of the free health screenings and assessments such as:

· Blood Pressure and Cholesterol Screenings offered by the Illinois Department of Public Health  Flu Clinic (Flu Immunizations);

· Memory Assessment provided by Center for Alzheimer’s Disease & Related Disorders at SIU School of Medicine;

· Cancer Risk Factors and Warning Signs Assessment conducted by Simmons Cancer Institute at SIU School of Medicine;

· Bone Density Screenings by the Memorial Medical Center Orthopedic Department;

· Stroke Risk Facts and Warning Signs Assessment provided by Memorial Medical Center Comprehensive Stroke Center;

· Sleep Apnea Screenings conducted by Memoria Medical Center Sleep Disorders Center; and

· Depression and Anxiety Screenings offered by Taylorville Memorial Hospital and Senior Life Solutions

IDoA also thanks representatives from our sister agencies, organizations and private companies who will provide information about services and programs available to older adults and their families throughout the entire fair, including:


· Battery Specialists

· Fraternal Order of Eagles #437

· Healthy Home Store LLC

· Illinois Attorney General’s Office

· Illinois Department of Public Health

· Illinois Department of Veteran’s Affairs

· Illinois Lion’s Club

· Illinois Secretary of State’s Office

· Illinois State Beekeepers Association

· Illinois State Employees Association Retirees

· Illinois State Treasurer’s Office

· Kitchen Craft

· Oasis Senior Center

· Looking for Lincoln Heritage Coalition

· Memorial Health System – Human Resources Department

· Superior Products, Inc.

· U.S. Social Security Administration

· Watkins Home Products

Senior Day activities are sponsored by Central Illinois Senior Celebration, the Association of Illinois Senior Centers, and Humana; Grandparent/Grandchild contest is sponsored by Springfield Supportive Living. Some events require pre-registration; to pre-register or for more information, call (217) 524-6911 or (800) 252-8966.


More information about IDoA can be found by calling (800) 252-8966 (TTY 888-206-1327 for the hearing impaired) or by visiting www.state.il.us/aging.

School and Sports Physicals

With school set to start all across the area in the next week or two, parents might still be scrambling to get those last minute school and sports physicals for their children.

Appointment times are available in dwindling supply as the annual bottleneck hits but there is help available on the local level.

Brea Cinnamon is a Doctor of Physical Therapy at OSF St Luke Medical Center in Kewanee and she says they can help out…

The Henry and Stark County Health Departments can also help out and RaeAnn Tucker, Director of Health Promotions says it’s only human nature to need an appointment at the last minute…


Kewanee City Council Meeting

Kewanee City Council met on Monday night with Council members facing a relatively short agenda.

The first item was a resolution to rescind a sales contract with Kurt and Carrie Gustafson for Lot 6 of Block 1 of the Mill Creek Station Subdivision.

Mr. and Mrs. Gustafson had previously purchased the vacant lot with plans to build on that property. But due to a variance issue that was raised at the June 27 Council meeting, the Gustafson’s decided to choose another property that did not require the approval of a variance.

Since the city owns the vacant lots in the Mill Creek Station and they wish to have homes built on those properties, Council voted to approve the resolution.

Council on Monday night also approved a resolution to affirm Mayor Steve Looneys’ recommendation for the appointment of Martin Medley as the Chairman of the City’s Zoning Board of Appeals.

Mr. Medley lives at 219 Edwards Street and the appointment is effective immediately with the expiration date of April 30, 2020 on that appointment.              

"No name" Springfield resident gains Olympic gold

It was hard to find a tv set in Springfield not tuned to the Olympics Sunday night. Those viewing habits paid off in a big way as former Illinois State Champion swimmer Ryan Held joined Michael Phelps atop the medal stand after Team USA took first in the 4 x 100 freeystyle relay in Rio de Janeiro. He drew the nation's attention with his emotional moment after collecting the medal. He talks about what was going through his mind as the national anthem played.....

When not taking part in international competition, Held swims for North Carolina State.

Needling Adults to Get Their Shots

When thinking of getting shots this time of year attention turns to school age kids but that leaves out a big portion of the population that can benefit from immunizations. August is National Immunization Awareness Month and the state’s Department of Public Health reminds everyone that shots aren’t just for kids. Assistant Director Don Kauerauf (CARE-OFF) says that adults are missing out on critical shots.

More and more drugstores and pharmacies are administering shots along with your county health department and your doctor.

Blood Donations Always Needed

Summertime blood donations are always important and the Central Illinois Community Blood Center says that one pint can save a life. The warmer months typically result in a slowdown of donations because people are out of their routines or traveling for vacation. Tara Matheson with the blood center says don’t forget to donate. They need all types but universal donors are always in short supply.

If you are looking for a blood drive to help out at Blood Center Impact dot org lists nationwide donation spots.

Same Day Voter Lawsuit

A Lawsuit is being filed against the state of Illinois claiming the equal protection clause of the 14th amendment is being violated by the same day voter registration law. Illinois' Liberty Justice Center senior Attorney Jacob Huebert says the lawsuit is necessary because only counties with more than 100-thousand residents are required to accept voter registration on election day.

Huebert says he would like to see same day voter registration in all of Illinois' counties to make the law fair.


Illinois' Liberty Justice Center is filing a lawsuit against the state of Illinois over same day voter registration laws. Senior Attorney Jacob Huebert says the lawsuit is necessary because only counties with more than 100-thousand residents are required to accept voter registration on election day.

Huebert says the law should be struck down because it violates the equal protection clause of the 14th amendment. He says he would like to see same day voter registration in all of Illinois' counties.

Taylorville Congressman has advice for Trump

Congressman Rodney Davis remains in Donald Trump's corner when it comes to Trump's bid for the White House. The Taylorville Republican says Trump needs to focus on issues and develop skin like an alligator...

Despite expressing concerns about Trump's recent performance and controversies, Davis continues to support Trump as the party's nominee.

Henry County Health Dept on PTP

Immunizations are discussed during the August 8 edition of People to People on WKEI

WKEI Open Line

The resignation of President Richard Nixon is discussed during the August 8 edition of the WKEI Open Line

OSF On Tuned IN

Brea Cinnamon and LIsa Salisbury talk about the Parkinsons Program at OSF St Luke Medical Center during the August 8 edition of Tuned IN on WKEI


KPD Bike Sale

The Kewanee Police Department’s abandoned and recovered bicycle sale will be held this coming Friday, August 12th at the Kewanee Sale Barn beginning around 5pm.

Police Chief Jim Dison says that they have built up quite an inventory over time…

Chief Dison adds that some pre-sale previews might still be available at the Sale Barn before the Friday evening sale…

Senior Center Golf Outing

The annual Henry County Senior Citizen Center golf outing is on the schedule for this coming Saturday, August 13th.

Senior Center Director Cassandra Schmoll says it’s a great event and a big fundraiser for them…

Ms. Schmoll adds that the prizes will be announced late in the afternoon on the 13th and she says you don’t have to golf in order to help the cause…

Kewanee And The Railroads

Dealing with major railroads such as the Burlington Northern and Santa Fe can be challenging under the best of circumstances.

That’s the case for cities and municipalities not to mention private individuals.

Kewanee City Manager Gary Bradley says that has been his experience on more than one occasion…

Galva School Board Agenda

Galva CUSD #224


August 8, 2016 at 7 PM

Galva Jr/Sr High School Library





1.                ROLL CALL


2.                COMMENDATIONS



          Note:  Individuals wishing to place an item on the agenda should contact the Superintendent or the Board President seven days prior to the Board Meeting.


4.       CONSENT AGENDA (5.1, 5.2, 6.1, 6.2, 6.3, 8.2, 8.4, 9.1, 9.2, 9.3, 9.4, 9.5)



          5.1     Regular Meeting Minutes of July 18, 2016 (Action)

          5.2     Executive Session Minutes of July 18, 2016 (Action)



          6.1     Approval of the Treasurer’s Report July 2016 (Action)

          6.2     Approval of the Bills for August 2016 (Action)

          6.3     Activity Accounts Balance Sheet (Action)



          7.1     Approval of the Tentative Budget for 2016-2017 (Action)

7.2     Establish September 19, 2016 at 6:55 PM in the Galva Jr/Sr High School Library for the Budget Hearing (Action)

          7.3     Resolution of Hazard Zone (Action)

          7.4     District Financial Report and Projections (Information)

          7.5     Architect Cost Estimate for Potential Track (Information)     



          8.1     Committee Reports (Information)

8.2     School Board Policy First Reading (Action)

8.3     Class of 2017 Graduation Date (Information)

8.4     Approval of an Overnight Trip for the 9-12 Music Students (Action)

8.5    Converting Junior High Student Govt. to Service Organization (Information)


9.       PERSONNEL

          9.1     Approve Employment of Heather Nance as JH Dance Coach (Action)

          9.2     Approve Greg Putnam as 7th Grade Boys’ Basketball Coach (Action)

          9.3     Approve Cody Blair as Secondary English Teacher (Action)

          9.4     Approve Kurt Meyer as Driver’s Ed/P.E. Teacher (Action)

          9.5     Approve Michelle Welgat as F/S Volleyball Coach (Action)






Wildlife, Habitat, Fishing and Smokey Bear Highlight Family Fun at Conservation World during Illinois State Fair


SPRINGFIELD, IL – Free activities for children and families will give Illinois State Fair visitors a chance to sample the great outdoors in Illinois at Conservation World at this year’s state fair on Aug. 12-21 in Springfield.


Conservation World is a 30-acre park with grass, shade trees, and ponds located on the northwest corner of the Illinois State Fairgrounds. Conservation World is easily accessible through a pedestrian gate near the Junior Livestock Building, and via a state fair tram stop next to the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) headquarters.


“The tradition continues at Conservation World, with plenty to do for kids interested in spending time outdoors, and great ideas for families looking to spend time together,” said IDNR Director Wayne Rosenthal. 


Traditional free activities for youth at Conservation World include kids fishing clinics at the pond inside the Conservation World gate, with all bait and tackle provided; and, archery and BB gun practice ranges for youth that are hosted by IDNR shooting sports experts and safety education instructors and volunteers.


IDNR wildlife, fisheries and natural heritage staffs will host displays and answer questions about wildlife watching, fishing and hunting prospects, habitat enhancement projects, and programs that are available to assist private landowners. The IDNR Division of Education will help children learn about saving species, including monarch butterflies and pollinators. 


State fair visitors can purchase Illinois fishing and hunting licenses and learn about the duties of a Conservation Police officer at the IDNR Law Enforcement tent, while the Division of Forest Resources invites families to keep an eye out for Smokey Bear while talking with foresters about trees and tree care.  Experts from the Illinois Green Industry Association can answer questions on at-home habitats and landscaping from the IGIA gazebo at the center of Conservation World.


Daily fly fishing instruction and weekend Voyageur canoe rides are also free activities for all ages at Conservation World. Pick up the latest edition of the Illinois State Parks guide, and enter


to win an outdoor adventure package with purchase of a deer, turkey or morel lapel pin at the Illinois Sportsmen Against Hunger Information Tent.


Food and drink vendors at Conservation World will include southern Illinois’ famed 17th Street Barbeque, Vose corn dogs, ice cream, kettle corn, shaved ice, and homemade root beer.


Illinois State Fair admission includes free admission to Conservation World, which is open daily from 10 a.m. until 7 p.m. on Aug. 12 through Aug. 21. 

Springfield couple preparing to watch son compete in Olympics

Randy and Cheryl Held of Springfield have once in a lifetime travel plans. They are heading to Rio de Janeiro to watch their son Ryan compete for a medal Sunday in Olympic swimming competition. Ryan will compete in the 100 meter freestyle relay. Their son's Olympic berth is still sinking in....

Held recorded multiple state titles at a school better known for football, Springfield's Sacred Heart Griffin.

Bonus cut

The Helds are both medical professionals, working at HSHS St. John's Hospital in Springfield. With talk of Zika concerns as well as crime and polluted waterways, they believe the Rio experience will be a positive one...

Illinois State Fair Twilight Parade Grand Marshalls named

Three Monsters of the Midway will blaze a trail to the carnival midway at the Illinois State Fair. Three members of the vaunted defense from the 1985 Super Bowl Champion Bears will not only perform on the Grandstand stage with their band the Chicago Six, they'll be honored at the annual parade. Dan Hampton, Otis Wilson and Steve "Mongo" McMichael have been named State Fair Twilight Parade Grand Marshalls. State Fair Manager Kevin Gordon says it will be a great experience for fans of the '85 champs....

This year's Twilight Fair Parade will step off 5:30 on Thursday, August 11th.

Domestic economic growth has little impact on agriculture

Friday’s job report surprised the experts as 255,000 new jobs were created in July, well above expectations. Per hour income rose as well. With the stock markets sitting at or near record highs analysts hope overall economic growth may rise in coming months. But domestic economic growth doesn’t mean as much for agriculture. Farm Bureau Economist Mike Doherty says agriculture rises and falls due to worldwide economic and population growth.

Over the years, farmers have been able to increase production fast enough to keep up with growing demand, but with rising productivity, both in the U.S. and in other ag exporting countries, like Brazil and Argentina, we may be doing too good of a job.

Mike Doherty says we need to maintain improve our transportation infrastructure, especially river transportation, if U.S. farmers are to remain competitive with South America and other low cost production areas around the world. 

WKEI Open Line

Children trapped in cars is discussed during the August 5 edition of the Open LIne on WKEI

Sen Chuck Weaver on Tuned IN

Senator Chuck Weaver talks about the prison in Kewanee and other state issues during the August 5 edition of Tuned IN on WKEI


Chamber Events

The Kewanee Chamber of Commerce has a busy schedule of activity in the upcoming weeks.

One of those activities is the Outstanding Citizen Banquet set for Saturday, August 13th.

Mark Mikenas is the Executive Director of the Chamber and he says reservations are still being taken for that event…

The Hog Festival Parade is also handled by the Chamber through the Ambassadors Club and Mark says entries for the parade are starting to flow into the office…

Another Chamber event later this fall will be a Lunch and Learn session with information to employers about the new overtime rules that will kick in on December 1st of this year…

Senior Center Baked Goods

The bakery department at the Henry County Senior Citizen Center in Kewanee continues to churn out some good stuff.

Director Cassandra Schmoll says they still have those awesome cookies in addition to the Friday morning cinnamon rolls…

Key Club Info

The Kewanee High School Key Club will host their annual summer picnic at Windmont Park on August 9th.

Key Club Adviser Amron Buchanan says it’s an opportunity to hook up with some old friends and also an opportunity to find out more about key club for those students that might be interested…

The annual Boiler Bash is coming up and another opportunity to find out more about Key Club…

Many people in the community are familiar with the Goodfellows Christmas Basket distribution and that program has been recognized on the national and international levels of Key Club…

Sen Weaver In Kewanee

37th District State Senator Chuck Weaver was in Kewanee on Thursday and commented about the prison situation in Kewanee.

Sen Weaver says the good news is that the state has made a commitment to use the facility moving forward…

Sen Weaver adds that employees will retain their jobs in one fashion or another and that is good news for not only those employees but the community as a whole…

As for the state budget, Sen Weaver says some, but not a lot of good news on that front…

Help Protect Our Illinois State Parks Park Visitors Asked to Remove Trash, Stay on Trails, Refrain from Defacing Natural Features


SPRINGFIELD, IL – The Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) is appealing to Illinois State Park visitors to help park staff keep our parks clean and protect their unique natural features. Illinois State Parks receive millions of visits each year, and those visitors can tax the natural resources found within our parks and stretch park staff to the limit. Park visitors carrying water bottles, drink cups, food or other items should pack out those items when leaving the park as trash barrels are generally not available on trails.  Diapers and other waste should be disposed of properly.


“Our Illinois State Parks are economic drivers for the communities they serve,” said IDNR Director Wayne Rosenthal. “Please help us maintain them for future generations by removing your trash, staying on trails and not defacing natural features.”


A video highlighting trash and crowding issues at Starved Rock State Park can be found on the IDNR YouTube Channel:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bU8PmE0SnF8&spfreload=10


Illinois Conservation Police will strictly enforce the following safety rules:


Possession of alcohol on trails Entering restricted areas Hiking off trails Climbing rock walls and cliffs Swimming (where prohibited) Defacing natural features with paint or etchings Littering Being on trails after dark  


Before you go, check park and river conditions here: http://www.dnr.illinois.gov/closures/Pages/default.aspx


Park updates and unexpected closures will be announced on the IDNR Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Illinois-Department-of-Natural-Resources-101691346567146/


For more information about Illinois State Parks in your area, visit: http://www.dnr.illinois.gov/parks/Pages/default.aspx.


If you are interested in helping protect Illinois State Parks, park volunteers from Starved Rock State Park have established the My Illinois Park Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/myillinoispark/?pnref=story.unseen-section


For more information about Illinois State Parks in your area, visit: http://www.dnr.illinois.gov/parks/Pages/default.aspx.

Road Updates Via Email Now

If you’ve ever been frustrated by road work on your normal drive to work you can start to know in advance of possible delays and projects. The Illinois Department of Transportation has a new “In Motion” program. It’s an automated email service that will send you a notice when work is scheduled in your area according to IDOT’s Brian Williamson.

If you want to sign up – go to the IDOT webpage or look up IDOT in Motion on your favorite search engine.

August Looks to Be Wet

The state saw a near record July when it came to rainfall and some communities had their wettest July ever. And the forecast isn’t changing for August. State Climatologist Jim Angel says that there are expectations of the wet conditions continuing.

Angel says temps should stay within normal ranges. Folks in the southern third of the state may see it a little warmer than average.

SOS Starting to Mail Out Reminders

How long did it take you to figure out your license plate sticker had expired over the past few months? Maybe you haven’t even looked, now you can start checking the mail for that reminder. The Secretary Of States Office stopped mailing reminders during the budget stalemate, but renewals are starting to be mailed out again. The SOS was saving more than $400,000 a month in postage by abandoning the project but Dave Druker says with new funds flowing to the agency the reminders will once again be going out.

The Secretary of State is seeking to sell advertising the mailings in an effort to help defray the cost.

YMCA Fairy Tale 5K Run


The Kewanee YMCA and Mission Possible will co-host a unique and special 5K run and walk this coming Saturday, August 6th.

Kendra Taylor is the Fitness Director at the Y and she says there will be two starting times on Saturday morning…

Ms. Taylor adds that there will also be some costume contests in addition to the other unique aspects of the event…

Needless to say, but proceeds will go to this year’s Relay for Life which will be held on Saturday, August 13th at Windmont Park…

PARCC Testing Update

PARCC Testing Update  

The new school year is rapidly approaching and this year, high school students will be tested under a different policy than in the last two years when the PARCC system of testing was utilized.

The federal government has since ruled that that testing method is not acceptable and a different system must be used this year.

Wethersfield District #230 Supt of Schools Mr. Shane Kazubowski says this year’s testing system should be better and more accurate for all…

The federal government now says that PARCC is no longer acceptable for high school students and administrators everywhere who originally had to scramble to make PARCC work, will now be faced with another type test…

4-H Archery Program to Begin in Cambridge August 8

Youth, ages 8 and older as of September 1, 2016 who are interested in learning skills and safety procedures for archery are invited to participate in a 4-H Archery Special Interest Club in Cambridge at 407 N West Street.  Sessions will be held on Mondays at 6:00 p.m. for seven weeks starting on August 8.  There is a $20 program fee for those not currently in 4-H and also there will be a $2 range fee each week for the usage of the facility.   To sign up, go to U of I Extension’s web site at web.extension.illinois.edu/hmrs and click on Online Registration for the Cambridge 4-H Archery SPIN Club.  For more information, please contact Cheryl Geitner, Extension Educator, 4-H Youth Development at (309) 932-3447


IFB And RFD At IL State Fair

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. — The Illinois Farm Bureau and RFD Radio Network will host the Illinois Master Showmanship Contest on Friday, Aug. 12, beginning at 7 p.m. in the Junior Livestock Barn on the Illinois State Fairgrounds.

The Master Showmanship Contest recognizes 4-H and FFA youth who have excelled at showing animals at their respective county fairs. The members will be judged on their handling of each of three species of animals: beef, sheep and swine. They also are quizzed by judges on their knowledge of animal husbandry and livestock production.

More than $8,000 worth of prizes donated by sponsors will be given away this year. A winner from each species will receive $100 and various prizes. Three top winners overall will receive $500, $300 or $200, a new showbox, Zero Gravity lounge chairs and various prizes. In addition, all participants will receive a t-shirt and prize for their hard work. Winners will be available for pictures and interviews following the award ceremony at the conclusion of the competition.

This year marks the seventeenth year for the contest. It was started by farm broadcasters in Illinois as a way to recognize outstanding youth and provide a state forum for the competition.

geese Strong Sets Second Meeting

Geese Strong sets second meeting



KEWANEE — The Wethersfield Geese Strong Comittee has set its next public information meeting for Tuesday, Aug. 9, at 7 p.m. in Moss Gym.

The group held its first meeting May 11 to present information about how the Wethersfield School District would be effected by consolidation with the Kewanee School District as proposed in a referendum on the Nov. 8 general election ballot.

The same night, a hearing was held at the Visitation School gym by Regional Superintendent Angela Zarvell, at which a petition asking that the issue be placed on the ballot was presented by a citizen-based Committee of 10. A representative of Geese Strong also presented reasonsat the hearing why the petition should not be granted. A petition with nearly 500 signatures supporting that position was also presented at the hearing.

After review, Zarvell approved the petition and forwarded it to the State School Superintendent but with concerns that it did not have the support of both districts and the amount of time that would left to establish a new school district should the issue pass. On June 14, State School Superintendent Dr. Tony Smith issued a letter approving the petition and concluding, after review, that the petition met requirements and that consolidation would be in the best interest of the students of both districts.

A period during which the decision could be challenged has now passed with none filed, thereby officially placing the question on the ballot in both districts this fall.

According to a Geese Strong statement, the Aug. 9 meeting will pick up where the May 11 meeting left off, presenting voters with information about consolidation including tax rates, rural tax assessments, and early absentee voting.

Taxpayers and voters of Wethersfield School District 230 are asked to attend.

The gym is air conditioned and accessed through the front door of the elementary school on Willard Street.

Illinois Loses Investment Income

Portfolio Reveals Millions in Missed Opportunity for Second Quarter

CHICAGO – The state of Illinois earned $7.9 million less in investment income in the second quarter of 2016 as a result of the year-long budget impasse, Illinois Treasurer Michael Frerichs said today. Despite the six-month budget plan signed onJune 30, the last day of the fiscal year, $31 million remains the projection for missed earnings for 2016.

“The damage is already done. Even though we still made money from our investments, one year with no budget created missed opportunity for our state,” Frerichs said. “We will continue to assess the impact and adjust our investment strategy as needed to minimize further damage and do what is best for Illinois residents.”

The state of Illinois earned $7.8 million less in investment income in the first quarter of 2016. Threats of unplannedfund sweeps and the need to pay court-ordered bills required the treasurer’s office to make short-term investments thatprioritized cash availability rather than longer-term, higher-yielding investment opportunities.

“A six-month budget deal is a step in the right direction, but falls short, making it difficult for Illinois agencies, organizations, and families to plan for the future,” Frerichs added. “I am hopeful that when the Governor and the General Assembly return to the table, they will put their non-budgetary items aside and focus on passing a full-year, balanced budget.”


With no budget in place for a full year, the treasurer’s office remains faced with a number of cash management and investment challenges. The treasurer’s office is responsible for managing the state’s investment portfolio, ensuring the liquidity, safety and diversification of investments, and producing earnings at or above industry standards.


While Frerichs’ office has increased the 30-day rate of return this year compared to last, the rate of increase has not keptpace with the overall market because of the move to a more cautious investment strategy as a result of the budgetimpasse.


During the budget impasse, the state increased its position in short-term, lower-yielding assets, such as overnightinvestments and money market funds, to ensure it had cash available in case of a multi-billion dollar fund sweep oranother court-ordered increase in billings. This disruption of normal investment activities cost the state about $2.6million per month, which represents money that would have been potentially earned if the state maintained its position inhigher-yielding, longer term investments such as treasuries and agency securities.


The analysis compares the state’s overall asset allocation and term maturities each month and compares to March 2015, pre-budget impasse.


About the Illinois Treasurer

The Illinois Treasurer is the state’s chief investment officer and Frerichs is a Certified Public Finance Officer. Heprotects consumers by encouraging savings plans for college or trade school, increasing financial education among allages, and removing barriers to a secure retirement. As the state’s Chief Investment Officer, he actively managesapproximately $25 billion. The portfolio includes $13 billion in state funds, $7 billion in college savings plans and $5billion on behalf of local and state governments. The investment approach is cautious to ensure the preservation of capitaland returns $28 to the state for every $1 spent in operations. The Treasurer’s Office predates Illinois incorporation in1818. Voters in 1848 chose to make it an elected office.

Illinois Chamber CEO calls economic recovery uneven

The Illinois Chamber of Commerce sees some progress when it comes to the Illinois economy but the level of recovery may well depend on your zip code. Chamber President and CEO Todd Maisch (Maysh) says recovery has been somewhat uneven....

Maisch says the chamber was hopeful Governor Bruce Rauner's business friendly turnaround agenda would have gained more traction by now, but they remain hopeful for continued economic improvement.

Blood Donation Restrictions For Travel To Florida

Blood donations centers are alerting potential donors that travel to a few counties in Florida could impact their blood donation plans. Tara Matheson with the Central Illinois Community Blood Center says with Zika’s arrival in south Florida the result is a restriction when it comes to donating blood.

The Central Illinois Community Blood Center says they are connected to a national blood donation system called One Blood and if supplies are low in south Florida because of donation issues then supplies could flow from Illinois to the Miami area.


Tara Matheson says that they take the safety of the blood supply very seriously.

Blood Center Impact dot org is a catch all for blood donations and drives in your area.

Rauner Administration claims strike date set for AFSCME

The war of words between the Rauner administration and AFSCME continues. A Central Management Services official claims the union for the majority of state workers is threatening to fine them as much as 5-thousand dollars if they cross a picket line in the event of a strike. AFSCME is calling the claim “another groundless attack from the Rauner administration.” A memo from the labor relations deputy director for the Department of Central Management Services claims AFSCME has a strike date of September first, but the union says there is no strike date and they want to avoid a strike.

Illinois Farm Bureau activities at Illinois State Fair

Illinois Farm Bureau will be showing up early to the state fair with activities planned for all families. In a tent located near the junior livestock barn and show ring, Illinois Farm Bureau promotions specialist Chelsi Riordan [REAR-DEN] says the goal is to engage with the future.

Staff will hand out free t-shirts with the Illinois Farm Bureau, 4-H and FFA logos. Fair goers will also have the opportunity to take a picture and tag Illinois Farm Bureau on Instagram to win a pair of sunglasses. Riordan says these are just some of the items needed for a fun and safe time at the fair.

Find Illinois Farm Bureau on the state fairgrounds in Springfield August 10 and 11 next to the Junior Livestock Building.

WKEI Open Line

The church bombings in Birmingham AL in 1963 are discussed during the August 3 edition of the Open Line on WKEI

La Leche To Meet August 10


    The La Leche League of Henry and Stark Counties' reminds area residents that their next meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, August 10th at 7:00pm at OSF St. Luke Medical Center, Kewanee.  "Early Days of Breastfeeding" will be the evening's program.


    Are you a new or expectant mother planning to breastfeed?  Then you will want the information and encouragement that La Leche League provides. Leaders are experienced breastfeeding mothers, accredited by La Leche League International.  Whether you are pregnant or already nursing, La Leche has something for you - tips and techniques shared by mothers who have enjoyed a successful breastfeeding relationship.


    Malissa Campbell, La Leche Counselor, notes "We welcome new mothers, pregnant women and babies and children at our meetings."


    Services available through La Leche include monthly informational meetings, lending library, and phone help for breastfeeding problems or questions. 


    Please join La Leche on Wednesday, August 10th for "Early Days of Breastfeeding.”  Remember all mothers and their babies are welcome.  For more information call Malissa at (309) 927-3027.


Recent River Tour

The recent tour of the Illinois River at various locks and dams was an enlightening experience.

Stark County Farm Bureau Manager Thomas Marten says there was a pretty good turnout for that tour…

Marten adds that you don’t have to go far to see the effects of economic activity as a result of the river and its resources…

Marten also notes that it’s going to cost money to upgrade those locks and dams which are vital to Illinois’ economy…

ISP Receives Accreditation


SPRINGFIELD – Illinois State Police (ISP) officials announced today the ISP was awarded with re-accreditation status by the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies, Inc. (CALEA).   CALEA accreditation is a highly prized recognition throughout the law enforcement community and ensures the agency continues to serve Illinois residents with professional excellence.


The annual CALEA conference was attended by hundreds of law enforcement professionals from the United States, Canada, and Mexico, in Baltimore, Maryland, last weekend.  The Commission is responsible for verifying agencies have met the multitude of standards for re-accreditation consideration.  The ISP was awarded the prestigious Accreditation with Excellence Award, exemplifying the Agency’s dedication in maintaining the highest level of professional services to the public and criminal justice community.  The award also underscores the Department’s commitment to service and the accreditation process. 


“CALEA accreditation is a benchmark of the ISP’s commitment and readiness to keep the citizens of Illinois safe,” said ISP Director Leo P. Schmitz.  "This award illustrates the hard work ISP employees perform each and every day and their dedication to fulfill our public safety mission.”


Earlier this year, a team of assessors from CALEA examined all aspects of the ISP’s policies and procedures, management, operations, and support services to verify that the Agency met the Commission’s state-of-the-art standards. 


CALEA was established in 1979 as an independent accrediting authority by the International Association of Chiefs of Police, National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives, National Sheriff’s Association, and Police Executives Research Forum.  Additional information about CALEA and the accreditation process can be found on their website: www.calea.org.


This is the ninth consecutive accreditation status awarded to the ISP since the initial award on June 15, 1986.

IL State Fair Launches Mobile App

SPRINGFIELD, IL. – Planning your trip to the Illinois State Fair just got easier with the release of a brand new Illinois State Fair mobile app.  Available for both Apple and Android devices, this new app has everything you need to plan your next trip to the state fairgrounds.  The mobile app is available at absolutely no cost!


The Illinois State Fair mobile app has information regarding every corner of the fairgrounds.  From Grandstand concerts to livestock show results and maps to help you find everything from parking, bathroom and barns, this app provides you with the tools you need to help you navigate your way around the state fairgrounds.  The app also contains other helpful tools such as a food finder, daily schedule of events, and a list of all the winners from competitions held at the Illinois State Fair.


“These days we do not go anywhere without our phones,” said State Fair Manager Kevin Gordon.  “This mobile app adds another level of convenience for fairgoers and will be offering a wealth of information for visitors to the Illinois State Fair.”


In addition, the new mobile app offers fairgoers some fun activities to take part in while at the Illinois State Fair. A scavenger hunt will take fairgoers around the grounds to different locations where they can unlock codes to win free prizes.   Also, you may want to start practicing your best selfie pose.   The new Illinois State Fair mobile app comes loaded with eight fun photo filters for you to post and share on social media platforms.   This innovation is yet another way the Rauner Administration and the Department of Agriculture are using technology to enhance the public’s interaction with government here in Illinois and make the experience more efficient.


Fairgoers who download the app will also have access to deals and discounts on the fairgrounds, the ability to buy tickets to concerts and other events, and take a self-guided tour of the various agriculture destinations on the fairgrounds. 



The Illinois State Fair app is the best way for fairgoers to stay in touch with everything going on at the fair and get the most out of every visit.   Start planning your visit by downloading the Illinois State Fair mobile app on your phone today!

Coroners Inquest Set For August 8






On Monday, August 8, 2016 Henry County Coroner, David A. Johnson, will hold an inquest on the following person(s):



Stanley R. Dorman, age 65, of Kewanee, Illinois died at Hayes Road, Galva Township, Section 32, Henry County, Illinois on Thursday, April 14, 2016.


Tyler J. John, age 17, of Rock Island, Illinois died at Hillcrest Resort, Orion, Illinois on Sunday, May 29, 2016.


The inquest will start at or about 4:00 p.m. at the Henry County Courthouse, located at 307 West Center Street, Cambridge, Illinois.


Please enter through the main entrance off of West Center Street and the guard at the door will assist you.


Kewanee Public Library will host a Lego program for kids this coming Saturday, August 6th and also on Saturday, August 20th at the library.

Sara Billiet is the Children’s Librarian at Kewanee Public Library and she says the free programs will run each Saturday from 10 until noon…

Ms. Billiet adds a note of thanks to the community for recent donations of Legos and she says they could still use a few more…

Illinois Extension on PTP

Angie Peltier talks about GMO's during the August 2 edition of People to People on WKEI


WKEI Open Line

Cemeteries and who knows what else is discussed during the August 2 edition of the Open Line on WKEI

Central Illinois chain reaction crash claims two young lives

There are more details on the deadly chain reaction wreck on I-55 in Logan County that claimed the lives of two children, but several questions remain. The work zone crash near Atlanta claimed the lives of children, whose ages were 2 and 4. Another child is in critical condition after being airlifted to Peoria. The driver of the van carrying the children, 40-year-old David Rock of Chicago ,is in fair condition. His van was struck from behind by the semi driven by 24-year-old Taven Webster of Purcell, Missouri. Charges are pending. 

Frerichs auction

State Treasurer Michael Frerichs is set to restore a tradition, selling unclaimed property at the Illinois State Fair. On August 20th, coins, currency, jewelry, sports memorabilia and more will go on the auction block. Frerichs says the State Fair sales were a proven success....

The bidding will take place at noon at the Ethnic Village Stage. There will be a preview from 8 until noon that day. There will also be a preview Tuesday at the Illinois State Capitol rotunda from 10 to 3. Another preview will take place Friday at the Thompson Center in Chicago from 11 to 2. Among the items for sale are a 1954 Cubs Ernie Banks rookie card and an 1856 Flying Eagle penny.

Gas Prices Lower Yet

t’s been cheaper to fill your tank up this year than last and that trend looks to continue. GasBuddy dot com says that the state’s average gas prices have backed off another 1.4 cents a gallon this week. Statewide averages are about 50 cents less than this time last year and about 25 cents less than last month. 

Sandack Replacement Found

Republicans selected a commissioner from Downers Grove village to replace Illinois GOP state Rep. Ron Sandack after he resigned his seat over cybersecurity issues involving fraudulent social media accounts allegedly set up in his name. The leaders of the Republican Party in DuPage and Will counties on Saturday selected 27-year-old David Olsen to serve the remainder of Sandack's term this year. Olsen will also run for a full two-year term in November

Durbin has advice that could be helpful to air travelers

Senator Dick Durbin knows the political life well after decades in the US House and Senate. He has found a way to use his love of reading to avoid extended conversations with critics among others...

Durbin appeared on C-Span's Book-Tv program. 

Illinois gas prices falling

The average price of a gallon of gasoline in Illinois has dropped again. GasBuddy-dot-com reports Illinois' average gas prices have fallen 1.4 cents per gallon in the lastweek. The price is nearly 50 cents lower than one year ago and more than a quarter lower than a month ago.

OSF Hospice on Tuned IN

Father Jerry Rafalko talks about loneliness and grieving during the August 2 edition of Tuned IN on WKEI


Schools And The Budget

Most if not all schools in Illinois will open their doors this fall on time after Illinois lawmakers came together to craft enough of a budget to keep the state moving forward if ever so slowly.

Kewanee Supt of Schools Dr. Chris Sullens says the current set up may not be perfect, but it did avoid the disaster that would have hit with no funding for schools…

Dr. Sullens says that while getting funding to resume for this year is good, it also does not account for the fact that lawmakers are not funding students as much as they should…

Dr. Sullens also hopes that moving forward, lawmakers will come up with a funding formula that is more equitable for all schools in the state…

Kewanee Cemeteries

Recent comments in the community about the condition of Pleasantview Cemetery in Kewanee have surfaced on facebook and also to the WKEI Open Line.

Some callers have indicated their displeasure about what they have termed weeds, tall grass and general lack of proper maintenance to some of the gravesites at Pleasantview.

Kewanee City Manager Mr. Gary Bradley says they have a consistent maintenance schedule in place and he says he’s a bit surprised to hear some of the criticisms…

Mr. Bradley extends an invitation to the community to contact him at City Hall if they feel there is an area that needs to be addressed…

Sec White Reinstates Sticker Notification


Secretary of State Jesse White announced today that his office has reinstated the mailing of vehicle registration reminder notices to Illinois drivers. To offset the cost of the mailings, White is drafting legislation allowing his office to offer advertising space on the mailings. In addition, White is urging the public to sign-up for email notices to further reduce mailing costs.


The Secretary of State’s office discontinued mailing reminders in October 2015 due to the lack of funding as a direct result of the state budget impasse. The stop-gap budget recently passed by the legislature and signed into law by the Governor allows White’s office to reinstate the notices.


“The notices are an essential tool for the public to be sure their vehicles are in good standing and avoid paying late fees and fines resulting from tickets issued by law enforcement,” White said.  “The driving public paid the price for the budget impasse and it proved to be an unfair burden. With the funds from the stop-gap budget the notices will resume. In addition, we are reducing the number of mailings and seeking alternative funding sources for the postage costs.”


“Although we are now able to reinstate mailing the vehicle registration reminder notices, I continue to strongly urge motorists to sign up for email reminders,” said White. “Saving taxpayer dollars is always a priority of our administration.”


White noted that more than 2.3 million people have registered for the email notification, 800,000 of which signed up since October 2015.


Vehicle owners can sign up for email notifications by visiting the Secretary of State website, www.cyberdriveillinois.com.  To register for the program, vehicle owners will need their assigned registration ID and PIN, which can be found on their current vehicle registration card.  If that information is not available, they can call the Secretary of State public inquiry division at 800-252-8980 to obtain the Registration ID and PIN. 

QCSO Tix Available

ISP District 7 June Activity


EAST MOLINE, IL (07-12-16) – Illinois State Police District Seven announced that during the month of June 2016, Troopers handled 1474 calls for service and assistance.  Of these calls, 187 were to help motorists whose vehicles were disabled on area highways.


          Criminal activities during the month included 4 persons apprehended for being wanted on outstanding warrants and 32 arrested for other criminal offenses.


          Traffic enforcement activities resulted in 230 drivers arrested for speeding and 93 cited for seat belt violations.  Driving under the influence arrests totaled 25, while 14 apprehensions for other alcohol related offenses were recorded.  Troopers issued a total of 572 traffic citations and 467 written warnings to motorists during the month.


          Troopers and weight inspectors issued 79 citations for overweight loads and issued 1 written warning for overweight violations.


          District Seven Troopers handled 43 traffic crashes within the four county area of Rock Island, Henry, Knox, and Mercer. There was 1 fatal crash handled by District 7 Troopers. 

Upcoming Food Managers Course

       The Environmental Health Division of the Henry and Stark County Health Departments announces that they will be holding a Food Handler's Certification Course that will meet on Wednesday, August 17th from 9:00am-12:00pm.


      The class will be held at the Henry and Stark County Health Department, 4424 US Hwy 34, Kewanee.  The cost of the 3 hours course is $15.


      Through the course, valuable information is given which will help food handlers improve their skills and operations.  The food handler's certification course is designed to help area food servers in the county meet the requirements of the IDPH Food Service Sanitation Code.  


     The course will cover the following topics of discussion:  1) The relationship between time and temperature with respect to foodborne illness. 2) The relationship between personal hygiene and food safety.  3) The methods of preventing contamination in all stages of food handling.  4) The procedures for cleaning and sanitizing. 5) The problems and potential solutions associated with temperature control, cross contamination, housekeeping and maintenance.  


     Registrations are limited. Those interested in registering, or for more information, should contact the Department at 852-0197 (Henry) or 852-3115 (Stark) or visit our website at www.henrystarkhealth.com or find us on Facebook at Henry and Stark County Health Departments or Follow Us on Twitter.  


Boil Order For East 7th Street In Kewanee




Effective Monday 8/1/16, the City of Kewanee Water Department has issued a water shut off and boil order to follow for the 400, 500, and 600 blocks of East 7th Street.  The shut off was a result of an emergency water main break repair.


Any residents, whose water has been shut off during this repair, will be under a boil order for 48 – 72 hours following the restoration of water service.

Residents in these areas may experience low pressure, rusty water, or no water.  If the water has been turned off, take precautions when using water until the water runs clean.  Only flush the system by running cold water, running hot water may draw rust into the water heater. 

If you have any questions, please call City Hall at 852-2611.

Open Line

Weedy cemeteries and jumping out of airplanes with no parachute are discussed during the August 1 edition of the Open Line on WKEI

Carbondale police officer shot

A Carbondale Police Officer is shot and seriously wounded in a Sunday night incident. A press release from the Illinois State Police indicates a suspect was speeding away from a shooting scene and opened fire on arriving officers. Police are seeking the driver of a tan,, four door vehicle. The officer is in serous condition at a St. Louis hospital. Police did not return fire.

Central Illinois chain reaction crash claims two young lives

 tragic crash on I-55 in Logan County, midway between Bloomington and Springfield. Two children are dead and two others have suffered serious injuries after a six vehicle pileup Sunday afternoon on Northbound I-55 near the Atlanta exit. State Police investigators say the chain reaction crash was started by a semi driven by a Missouri man. The semi crashed into the back of a van driven by a Chicago man. That van then hit four other vehicles. The children killed were in that van. Their ages have not been released. The two other victims injured were airlifted from the scene. The crash closed that stretch of the interstate for six hours.

Get Rid of Old Tires to Help Stop Zika

The Zika virus is now being spread by mosquito’s in the United States. The Centers for Disease Control says that there 1600 cases in the US and the first mosquito to human transmission recently occurred in Florida. Zika is still a long way away from Illinois but other viruses like West Nile are in the state. And the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency wants to eliminate place where those biting bugs locate. Kim Biggs with IEPA says getting rid of used tires can make a big difference.

To address problems areas first, the IEPA will collect tires from southern Illinois because that is where the first mosquitos with Zika or West Nile are expected to be found. 

Kirk vs Duckworth tightens up

Senator Mark Kirk has been trailing in the fundraising game in the battle for re-election and his opponent has been running strong in polls. But, Kirk now appears to be rebounding. A recent message to supporters of his opponent, Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth, noted that a poll from Kirk’s super PAC showed him ahead by 2 points. Gregg Durham from We Ask America isn't offering hard numbers but he says the Kirk surge is undeniable....

The Duckworth camp told supporters in a mass email that Kirk has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on negative TV ads in recent weeks. 

OSF On Tuned IN

OSF Medical Group Manager Susan Moore and Dietician Andrea Tenley offer back to school tips during the August 1 edition of Tuned IN on WKEI

St Judes Run Is Successful


The annual St Judes run to Peoria on Saturday was a resounding success once again this year.

In addition to the 43 runners from Kewanee and the nearly $50,000 that was raised locally, another 28,000 runners converged on Peoria from 37 Illinois cities in addition to runners from St Louis and Memphis TN.

This year’s run raised more than $5 million dollars which was a little over $500,000.00 more than last year.

Proceeds from Saturday’s event go to St Judes Children Research Hospital in Memphis.      

IRS Scam Info

Today’s world is unfortunately filled with scam artists and often times we think of scam artists that use the telephone to do their business.

But another form of scams occurs on the internet with bogus websites.

Michael Devine with the IRS in St Louis says website scams can be just as lethal as any other…

Devine also says that most people have a generous heart and wish to help others and the bad guys are also counting on that as well…

Legionnaires Found In Adams County

SPRINGFIELD - The Illinois Department of Veterans’ Affairs (IDVA) today announced that two residents of the Quincy Veterans’ Home have been diagnosed with Legionnaires’ disease. IDVA is working closely with the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH), the Adams County Health Department, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to determine where the residents acquired the Legionella bacteria, although a definitive source may never be identified. Senior administration officials with the IDVA, IDPH and Illinois Environmental Protection Agency are en route to Quincy to coordinate closely with veterans’ home, county and city personnel.

"We are very concerned about our residents and staff the Quincy Veterans’ Home and we are continuing to implement every necessary precaution to ensure the health and safety of all. That is our top priority," IDVA Director Erica Jeffries said. "As an additional precaution, we are halting all new admissions to the home."

The facility recently completed an extensive renovation of its plumbing systems in response to the 2015 Legionnaires’ disease outbreak. Renovation included construction of a water treatment plant capable of providing higher quality water for the home’s sensitive population. IDVA will continue implementing procedures to test for and flush any harmful bacteria from the plumbing system and is maintaining hot water temperatures at 150? F. Additionally, IDVA is in the process of engaging a consultant who is an expert on infectious diseases, including Legionella, to assist in the analysis.

Legionella bacteria grow in areas of warm water. Common water sources include decorative fountains, hot tubs, shower areas, and cooling towers. In order to be infected with the bacteria, a person must inhale contaminated water vapor. Legionnaires’ disease cannot be transmitted person-to-person.

IDVA will provide updates when additional information is available.

Summer Camp For Incarcerated Women

Springfield, IL)  --  The Illinois Department of Corrections continues to help incarcerated women build strong relationships with their children.  Nearly 50 children will be brought in to Logan and Decatur Correctional Centers to spend time with their mothers next week as part of the Mom and Me Summer Camp, which is being held from July 31st through August 3rd

The children will meet up at East Bay Camp near Bloomington on Sunday, where they will spend their evenings participating in activities that enhance their communication skills, strengthen their abilities to work as a team, and boost their self-esteem. StartingMonday, the kids will split up and head to the facilities where their moms are housed for daily activities. The children will return to the campgrounds each evening.

The camp started at Lincoln Correctional Center 15 years ago and falls in line with the Department’s mission to give incarcerated women the tools they need to become better parents. Maggie Burke, who oversees the IDOC’s Women and Family Service’s Division, says the camp is extremely beneficial when it comes to strengthening family ties, “Programs like the Mom and Me Summer Camp are the cornerstone to building bonds between a mother and her children. It’s a positive experience that helps keep families together and helps reduce the recidivism rate among female offenders.” 

The camp is in its 10th year at Decatur Correctional Center. Warden Shelith Hansbro says, “It’s an amazing opportunity for moms and their children to reconnect and participate in activities that allow them to focus on each other, learn more about each other, and grow together.”

Thirty-two children and 18 moms are expected to participate in the camp at Logan. Fifteen children and 11 moms are expected to participate in the camp at Decatur. And this year, a former camper, who participated in the program for several years while his mother was incarcerated, will be returning to volunteer as a cabin counselor.

The Mom and Me Summer Camp is a faith-based program funded entirely through private donations. The camp is for children ages 7 through 12 and would not be possible without the committed efforts of volunteers. This year, 60 volunteers will work with the children at the camp.

School Physicals

With the calendar page now turning to August comes the final reminder of the need for school physicals from the Henry and Stark County Health Departments.

RaeAnn Tucker is the Director of Health Promotions with the Health Dept and she says school will be starting in the next couple of weeks and they can still help out…

With lots of hot weather remaining comes the reminder that food safety, particularly when outdoor gatherings occur remains a priority…