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Bureau County has been added to the list of those eligible to receive federal aid after last month's floods. Marshall, Stark, Knox, Livingston, Peoria, Tazewell, Woodford, and Rock Island Counties are also among 14 that might be reimbursed for flood prep and clean-up costs. People in the approved counties should apply for aid, even if they have insurance. FEMA officials say sometimes they'll pick up the tab for things insurance won't cover. This brings the total to 25 counties in the Illinois disaster declaration for severe storms and flooding between April 16 and May 5.
House, Senate Override Quinn Veto On Rate Hikes
It's official. Ameren and ComEd will be raising rates in the near future. The House followed in the Senate's footsteps and overruled Governor Quinn after he vetoed a bill that gives the companies the go ahead to increase their rates. The companies say they'll use the extra cash to upgrade their electric grid, which will help the restore service quicker when there's an outage.
New Concealed Carry Bill On The Table
A new deal on concealed carry will get a hearing today. State reps will hear the details of the newest additions in the bill, which include bans on guns in parks, athletic fields, and on public transit systems. It would also cost 150-dollars to get licensed to carry a gun in public. Some say these measures could be enough to push the bill through the House.
Speed Limit Could Soon Go Up To 70 MPH
Lawmakers are split on whether the speed limit on rural interstates should be increased to 70-miles an hour. Some argue it'll be safer for drivers and that it would even boost revenues for the state as people drive through on road trips. But opponents say boosting the limit will
A Rockford man is dead from a two-vehicle crash on Interstate 80 near Sheffield. The accident happened during Monday night’s storms. District 17 State Police Trooper Craig Graham says Tzantera Bach-Dalton, 48, was stopped on the shoulder of westbound I-80 at mile marker 41 when his SUV was struck from behind by a vehicle driven by Christina Elmers, 18, of Albany, Illinois. The SUV ended up in the ditch on the north side of I-80 while her Jeep came to rest in the westbound passing lane. Elmers was taken to Perry Memorial Hospital in Princeton. Bach-Dalton was pronounced dead at the scene by the Bureau County Coroner’s Office. An investigation into the crash continues by the Illinois State Police.
Bill Clinton Backs Gay Marriage Bill
Former President Bill Clinton is backing the proposed Illinois legislation to legalize gay marriage. Yesterday, Clinton urged the Illinois House in a statement that was distributed by gay-rights advocates. In the statement, Clinton wrote the nation must extend rights to people who have been previously denied.
Fracking Bill Clears House Committee
An Illinois House committee has unanimously approved a bill to permit and regulate hydraulic fracturing. The vote came amid chants of "shame" from opponents of fracking who packed yesterday's hearing. The controversial method of extracting oil and natural gas by using a high-pressure mixture of water, sand and chemicals carries environmental challenges. The bill that now moves to the full House would require companies to disclose the chemicals they use and test ground water before and after drilling. The bill has already passed the Senate.
Tornado Relief Volunteers Urged To Wait
The Red Cross is advising Illinoisans who want to volunteer with recovery efforts in Oklahoma City not to go there on their own. Erin Miller of the Red Cross in central Illinois says people should volunteer through a recognized relief agency like the Salvation Army or the Red Cross and then wait until disaster coordinators in Oklahoma ask for additional help. In the meantime, the Red Cross says the best way to help is with a cash
A long line of thunderstorms rolled through the area last night, downing trees and power lines, causing road hazards and numerous power outages. District 17 State Police responded to a two-vehicle traffic accident on Interstate 80 just before 10 pm. The crash happened in the westbound lane at mile marker 41 ½ near Sheffield. Injuries and lane blockage was reported. A request was put in to IDOT for closure of the road. We’ll have more details on the accident as they’re made available. A scanner report indicated a tornado near Henry and in Dover, the roof of Ultra Foam was blown off. Trees and power lines were not only down in Princeton, but about a half-mile east of town on Route 6, a tree was down across the road, blocking traffic from both directions. Bradford experienced much damage. The street heading out of town to the east is closed due to downed trees and power lines. Michlig Ag in Bradford suffered major damage with dryers tipped over grain legs toppled onto bins and roofs ripped off sheds. In Tiskilwa, trees were down on electrical wires. The wires were sparking. Wenona had multiple electric poles down with live wires near the ground. The storms also left hundreds of customers without power. As for rainfall totals, most areas reported receiving between an inch-and-a-half and two inches.
Senate Committee Moves On Limiting Ammo
It looks like a ban on high-capacity magazines is coming. The state senate is moving a bill that will ban the sale of magazines with more than 10 bullets. The bill sailed out of committee yesterday with lawmakers on both sides of the aisle voting yes. It could get a vote on the floor as early as today.
Tanning Ban Headed To Quinn
Tanning could soon be a thing of the past for Illinois teens. Lawmakers passed a bill that would ban anyone 18 and under from using indoor tanning beds. The idea is to reduce the number of cancer cases in the state. Officials with the American Cancer Society say skin cancer is the second most common form of cancer for people between 15 and 29, and statistics show nearly 25-hundred people in Illinois will be diagnosed with melanoma this year. But, they say keeping kids out of the UV lights will cut that number down significantly.
Republican Lawmakers Not Happy About Quinn Appointment
Republicans say Governor Quinn may be trying to protect a Democratic candidate for Congress. Quinn appointed David Gill as Assistant Director of Public Health just one week after Gill announced he was running for Congress next year. Republicans say the appointment may be a political payoff to keep Gill from running against the Democrats' candidate of choice, Judge Ann Callis. Callis quit the bench the same day Quinn
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