Quincy, IL – Kelly Street is dropping out of the race for State Representative in District 93. The Scott County Democrat was challenging Republican Incumbent Jil Tracy. Adams County Democratic Committee Chairman, Verne Hagstrom, says Street was told, earlier this week, that he must stop campaigning because of potential violations of the Federal Hatch Act. That law prevents a candidate from running for certain political offices if their employer receives federal funding. Hagstrom says Street's employer, a state-run hospital, uses federal Medicaid money to pay some salaries.
Rushville, IL – The Scripps Park Board will recommend to the Rushville City Council that hunting be allowed in the 100-acre addition to the park. Board members see a possible leasing through bids as a way to raise income to help develop the addition . They point out that lease hunting is becoming more popular in the region, and say they have had some interest from possible hunters. The board is recommending a possible October through mid-January season, with other access denied to the park addition during the lease period.
Keokuk, IA – Keokuk's firefighters are looking for a multi-year contract with substantial pay hikes. The initial offer calls for a 3-year deal with a $1/hour pay hike each year. The hourly rates for members of the firefighter's union would increase by more than 20% during the proposed deal. The union is also asking for additional pay for certified haz-mat technicians, a pay hike during scheduled work hours from 7 P.M. to 7 A.M., and a bump in longevity pay. The city must present its counter offer during a public meeting during the next two weeks.
Macomb, IL – A $65,000 state grant has helped furnish a new type of computer lab at Macomb High School. The computers are loaded with professional software like that used in business and industry. Facilitator Emily Platt says students teach each other how to use the software, then apply it to projects for community service. She says some of the projects include an on-line newapaper, animated video or building design. Students work in teams to help build communication skills.
Macomb, IL – Macomb aldermen have read the writing on the wall regarding political signs. City law allows just two signs in a home's yard and the city recently sent letters to violators. But that move was met with some resistance. A petition was circulated urging the city to reconsider its stance, and several people addressed the city council concerning the issue this week. Opponents of the rule say it's unconstitutional to limit the number of signs. Aldermen decided it's best to suspend the rule and review it after the November election.
Macomb, IL – Illinois State Representative Rich Myers is questioning efforts in the legislature to extend a rate freeze on electric power. The Colchester Republican says rates have been frozen at pre-1992 levels. He fears that if utilities cannot afford to purchase power on the open market, the state might have to step in to guarantee continued electricity. He says when California had to buy power to augment supplies, it cost that state millions of dollars. Myers also says the threat of the extension has lowered the bond ratings for Ameren and Commonwealth Edison.