Keokuk, IA – Keokuk could spotlight vacant buildings in an effort to create new businesses and developments. Main Street Keokuk now has 10 large window signs that read Main Street Opportunity . They will be rotated throughout the empty downtown buildings. Executive Director, Joyce Glasscock, says an accompanying sign, complete with cost, size, and taxes, will allow building owners to sell their properties 24/7. Glasscock says the focus signs can be placed in a window for 2 months before they are rotated out. She says there are more than 40 vacant properties in downtown Keokuk.
Fort Madison, IA – Lee County will not be adding a gravel road to its road improvement plan. More than three dozen residents signed a petition calling for Otte Road to be paved within the next five years. The road is east of West Point, connecting Highways 103 and X-23. County Engineer, Dennis Osipowicz, says Otte Road does not score high enough, using a state formula, to be paved. Several other projects on Lee County's five year plan will be pushed back, even though they score high enough, because of funding issues.
Bushnell, IL – A special Bushnell City Council committee will evaluate the bids on a new roof for the Cultural and Recreation Center. Mayor Steve Russell says the five bids covered different types of roof replacement. He says the committee will evaluate the bids to see what the city can afford ... and what would last the longest. He says the committe is expected to make a recommendation to the council within a couple of weeks. The work is not expected to begin until late spring.
Macomb, IL – A McDonough County board member is calling for elimination of the county's senior citizen transportation tax. The levy was approved in a mid-1980s vote to support senior citizen transportation services. Brown says since the senior program has become part of the county's public transportation system, there is no need for the special levy. McDonough County Transportation Director Gary Ziegler says without that tax money, senior transportation would have to be scaled back.
Undated – Western Illinois' new congressman thinks President Bush is staying "a very wrong course" by announcing he will send another 20,000 troops to Iraq. Democrat Phil Hare says the president has chosen not to listen to Congress, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, or the recommendations of the Baker-Hamilton report. He says Bush seems to be paying attention only to the person he sees in the mirror. Hare says more than 3,000 American troops have already been killed in Iraq and another 25,000 have been injured.
Jefferson City, MO – One Northeast Missouri lawmaker says the state could initiate a large scale tax cut this year. Representative Brian Munzlinger says the spring session is still in the early stages, with committees being finalized and new bills being filed. Once lawmakers are ready, the Lewis County Republican expects a push to eliminate the state income tax on social security and on certain retirement pensions. The Missouri House of Representatives is expected to begin debate on eliminating the social security tax this week.
January 11, 2007 – Rich Egger talks to Gordona Rezab, archivist emeritus from Western Illinois University. Rezab is completing work on the book "Place Names in McDonough County: Abe Lincoln Trail to Zanesville."
Bushnell, IL – Bushnell's mayor and aldermen are seeking suggestions on what to put in Liberty Park. The plot is being renovated, after years of little use. Mayor Steve Russell says among top suggestions to date are a walking trail and a disk golf course. He says a break in the weather has allowed the planting of $6,000 worth of trees. A committee will meet within a couple of months to come up with a budget for the park additions.