Macomb, IL – The Macomb Park District held three public meetings to gather input on its long-range development plan. Now, the district is preparing to make that plan a reality. The district will initially focus on its 80-acre University Drive property. The first step is to develop something more definitive from the conceptual drawings presented to the public. Executive Director Ray Peterson will contact local engineering firms to get input and general estimates on the cost. He will also look into the cost of getting utility services to the site.
Keokuk, IA – A soon-to-be completed biodiesel plant in Southeast Iowa is already expanding into other markets. Sales Manager, Al Moander says Tri-City Energy's biodiesel manufacturing plant is now being installed in its downtown Keokuk facility. Before fuel production begins, next month, Moander says the company will team with Ames-based Techno-Chem and Des Moines Based Insta-Pro International to form TC Energy. TC Energy will build biodiesel manufacturing plants that are similar to the 5,000,000 gallon plant in Keokuk. Moander says the equipment will be assembled in Keokuk.
Fort Madison, IA – Fort Madison is not ready to resume payments to the Great River Regional Waste Authority. The city's monthly waste management fee payment, $17,000, has been withheld since last month. The city council stopped the payments after a state audit revealed improper or questionable spending by the authority. Council member Brad Randolph says more changes to operations, at the landfill, are needed before the payments could resume. He says it starts with firing director Tim Yoder, who remains on paid leave, and appointing a new waste authority commission.
Canton, IL – Illinois has released more than $6 million in Opportunity Returns grant money to help build a Canton, Illinois ethanol plant. Manager Mike Smith says the grant is part of more than $13 million in state funding for the $100 million plant. Construction began this year. The plant is expected to be producing ethanol by next May, with construction complete a few months later. The Central Illinois Energy plant will employ abouat 45 people, use more than 13 million bushels of corn and produce about 37 million gallons of ethanol each year.
Macomb, IL – McDonough County will not take up an employee residence policy at this time. Board Chairman Bob Harwick told the Government Integrity and Oversight Committee such a policy would affect few workers and could reduce the pool of applicants. He said the issue might come up again in contracts with sheriff's deputies and highway department workers. He says the county counts on members of both groups to be able to report in a hurry in a time of emergency. However, he says the requirement would be subject to negotiations when a new contract is worked out.
Keokuk, IA – One Lee County community is getting some law enforcement assistance from the sheriff's department. Lee County has reached an agreement with West Point that would allow the department to supervise the city's reserve officers, until a new police chief is hired. West Point has been without an active police chief for several weeks. Sheriff Buck Jones, who will serve as interim chief, says under Iowa law, a reserve officer has no authority if they are not under the supervision of a certified officer.
Macomb, IL – Macomb aldermen are now at a point where they will need to make decisions that will determine the fate of a proposed housing complex. Aldermen listened to another round of comments on the issue during an annexation hearing Monday night. The city council chambers were packed for the meeting. The development would be marketed to WIU students and would contain enough space to house about 500 people. It would be built at Ward and Piper Streets. People who live near the site oppose it. Their main concerns are noise and traffic.
Carthage, IL – The Hancock County Economic Development Association is changing the focus of its director. Extension Director Deb Pflasterer says the new title will be coordinator, instead of educator. She says members wanted someone who could work more on business rentention and attracting new firms to the county. The former title required the job position to be more closely coordinated with the University of Illinois. Pflasterer says the opening will be posted shortly, and the group hopes to have a candidate selected by October.