Monmouth, IL – A Warren County Board committee is looking into whether the county should try to form a health department. Chairman Gary Heaton says representatives from the city of Monmouth suggested the idea. He says a department could provide up to 30 services to the public. In addition, it would make the county eligible for grants that it cannot now get. Heaton says committee members are surveying other counties to find out the pros and cons. He says the committee will make a report to the county board, which will then decide whether to proceed.
Macomb, IL – For the second week in a row, Macomb aldermen spent a considerable amount of time weighing the pros and cons of a proposed housing complex at South Ward and Piper Streets. Developer Art McManus says the homes would generate about $400,000 in property taxes. But residents of the neighborhood just east of the site are not sold on the idea. They packed the city council chambers again last night to say the development would create too much traffic and too much noise. It would house around 500 people, most of whom would be students.
Hamilton, IL – Hamilton residents have an opportunity to take a closer look at the school district's budget for the upcoming school year. The school board has placed the nearly $5,000,000 spending plan on public display for the next 30 days. Superintendent James Jackson says the education fund, which includes teacher salaries and day-to-day operations, appears to be running in the black. The school district saw an increase in state aid for this fiscal year. Jackson says the budget does not include any major projects for this year.
Macomb, IL – McDonough County office-holders must pass an on-line test on emergency management to avoid jeopardizing some federal grants. Few have done so yet. McDonough County ESDA director Dan Kreps says the test is required because the local officers might have to be in emergency operations center in case of a major incident in the county. He says must make decisions with political ramifications. That could include where cleanup would begin, or who should be evacuated from a dangerous area.
Warsaw, IL – Part of the road connecting Hamilton and Warsaw is in line for some much needed repairs. Engineers have already begun the surveying work on River Road, just north of Warsaw. The town maintains about 2.5 miles of the road. Mayor Robert Frank says the improvement project is important to Warsaw. Frank says some portions of the road will be resurfaced while other stretches will be completely reconstructed. After years of lobbying, the city will receive $850,000 from the federal government for the project. The local match will be 20% or about 170-thousand dollars.
Macomb, IL – A Macomb man would like to see a canoe entrance point on the Lamoine River in town. But it might prove to be easier said than done. John Cox of the Lamoine River Ecosystem Partnership is seeking state grant money for the project. He's hoping the park district will serve as the agency for the grant application. But park commissioners are reluctant to move forward because they believe the Illinois Department of Natural Resources does not consider the Lamoine to be a public access stream.
Keokuk, IA – The Keokuk city council has rejected Atmos Energy's plan to build a new office building along the Highway 61 bypass. The utility company had asked the city to rezone about 5.5 acres of land from residential to light industrial. The council voted unanimously against the rezoning. Potential neighbors spoke both in favor of and against the project. Keokuk's Planning and Zoning Commission had recommended the city reject the proposal. Company representatives told the city Atmos would try to keep the nearly $2,000,000 facility in Keokuk, but could not promise anything.