Macomb, IL – Macomb will seek a nearly 8% increase in the amount of property tax money it receives. The city will ask for a tax levy of more than $1.3 million. This year it received more than $1.2 million. A public Truth in Taxation hearing on the proposed levy will be held during the city council's December 18 meeting. Later that night aldermen will be asked to approve it. The city plans to rearrange the way it spends property tax money. It will put more of that revenue into its general corporate fund and less into its insurance fund.
Washington DC – Members of the US House have paid tribute to retiring Congressman Lane Evans (D-IL). The tribute was organized by Jerry Costello (D-IL) and took place after the end of legislative business Thursday night. Costello said Evans always defended the rights of working men and women, and praised his efforts on behalf of veterans. Marcy Kaptur (D-OH) also praised Evans for helping veterans and their children.
Macomb, IL – After several months of skirmishing, attorneys have agreed on a Dec. 19 court date to argue issues in a school detachment case. Schuyler-Industry Superintendent Matt Plater says his board will vigorously oppose the transfer of students and farmland to the Macomb district. He says the cost in assessed valuation and state aid would be too high. Issues in the hearing will include an appeal of the detachment, a request to have a different judge assigned to the issue, and a request that the detachment hearing be re-held before a different regional education superintendent.
Springfield, IL – Illinois is issuing its first round of anhydrous ammonia security grants to agrichemical dealers in the west-central part of the state. Anhydrous ammonia is sometimes used to manufacture methamphetamine. The companies will use the money to offset the costs of security devices such as surveillance cameras and tamper-proof locks. This will prevent the businesses from having to pass along those costs to farmers. Nearly $140,000 will be distributed by the state.
Macomb, IL – Western Illinois University is setting up a Homeland Security Research Program with the aid of a grant from Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity. Director Dean Alexander says a database will compile information on companies with products or services. He says the program will also analyze security programs and produce reports on issues and problems. He says the new group will also help the goal of producing certificate programs and a minor in homeland security for the Department of Law Enforcement and Justice Administration.
Hamilton, IL – Hamilton is finding it difficult to develop an adequate medical response team. Just a handful of residents turned out for a public meeting on the creation of a Hamilton first responder unit. A first responder is trained to provide various forms of treatment at an accident or a medical emergency. Hancock County E-M-S Coordinator, Joe Barlow, says Hamilton would need a large number of volunteers to develop and sustain an effective first responder unit. Barlow says lower numbers could result in volunteers working too many hours and eventually quitting.