TSPR Local

County Road Weight Limits Posted
1:35 pm
Mon January 23, 2012

McDonough County Road Weight Limits are Posted

County Engineer Tom Hickman

The McDonough County Highway Department is posting road weight limits until April 14th. The department's website calendar will show what days the limits are in effect. On those days, haulers will need permits to haul legal limits that are over the load limits.

County Engineer Tom Hickman said the limits are one way to reduce damage to the roads.

He said, “The freeze-thaw cycle is why I do this. Because when the road base freezes and then thaws out, it gets soft and it comes apart if you put too much weight on it.”

Distracted Driving
11:59 am
Sun January 22, 2012

Cell Phones Could Be Banned for Illinois Motorists

An Illinois legislator has introduced a proposal that would ban drivers from using their cell phones. 

It's already illegal to text when you're behind the wheel, and some local ordinances only allow drivers to use hands-free devices for their phones.

Representative John D'Amico (D-Chicago) wants to go beyond those limitations.  He introduced a measure that would ban motorists from using mobile devices at all.

D'Amico acknowledged the idea might be unpopular with drivers who have become accustomed to making calls from the road, but he is standing by the proposal.

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Big Tourism Weekend in Keokuk
6:09 pm
Fri January 20, 2012

Bald Eagle Appreciation Days

Organizers hope the recent temperature dip will make it easier for people to watch the bald eagles soar above Keokuk’s riverfront this weekend.

Lee County Conservation Director Tom Buckley says the warmer weather this winter has provided more hunting locations for the eagles.

He says they have been able to travel up and down the Mississippi River because of the open water.

Buckley says as the river starts to freeze, the eagles will start to congregate below Keokuk’s Lock & Dam because the moving water keeps that area open for hunting.

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Franchise agreement provides lump-sum payments
2:56 pm
Fri January 20, 2012

Monmouth and Ameren Finalize Franchise Agreement

City Administrator Eric Hanson

The old franchise agreement was signed in 1962 with Illinois Power. The 50 year agreement expired this month.

City Administrator Eric Hanson said the utility provided the city with free electricity to operate traffic signals and with free natural gas. In return, the utility used the city's rights-of-way for its natural gas lines and power lines.

Hanson said changes to the utility industry in Illinois mean Ameren is no longer a supplier of energy. It is a distributor. The city will no longer receive free electricity and natural gas.

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Rehabbing an Old Graveyard
12:03 pm
Fri January 20, 2012

Resolution of Support for Old Macomb Cemetery

Some broken headstones have been piled up against a tree in the graveyard

The McDonough County Historical Society now has some backing for its plans to clean up a cemetery that has been neglected for years.

Macomb aldermen approved a resolution of support for the rehab of the Old Macomb Cemetery on Wigwam Hollow Rd. The property is owned by the city.

The Historical Society is working to receive a grant from the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution. The city's support could help with that endeavor.

Fifth Ward Alderman Dave Dorsett said the city might be willing to do more if the grant comes through.

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Testing To Begin Soon
12:00 am
Fri January 20, 2012

Keokuk Plant To Reopen

Congressman Dave Loebsack (D-Iowa) pledged to do what he can to support Keokuk's new biodiesel plant.

Plant Manager Dennis Clark says testing at the biodiesel plant in downtown Keokuk could get underway in a couple of weeks.

He says that process will continue until the equipment is up to speed, as it sat idle for several years.

The same company (W2 Fuel that owns the former Tri-City Energy plant in Keokuk has a similar facility in Crawfordsville, Iowa.

Clark says the hiring process is underway at both locations.

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GOP Says Votes Counted
11:42 pm
Thu January 19, 2012

Paperwork To Blame In Lee County

Inside the West Point Public Library on Caucus Night.

The Iowa GOP has released the certified results from the January 3rd Caucus.

They show the race between former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum and former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney was too close to call.

Romney was leading by nearly 10 votes on caucus night, but Santorum is now ahead by about 35 votes.

There will be no official winner, though, because the final vote totals were not available for eight precincts in Iowa, including four in Lee County.

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Job Cuts A "Rebalancing"
6:27 pm
Thu January 19, 2012

Jacksonville Developmental Center to Close

Governor Pat Quinn

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn confirmed he plans to close the  Jacksonville  Developmental Center and Tinley Park Mental Health  Center. 

Quinn's  office is calling the closures a "rebalancing."

The  Governor plans to move institutionalized patients with developmental  disabilities and mental illness to community-based settings.

In  a statement, Quinn said it will improve their quality of life.

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Schock discusses pending legislation
2:52 pm
Thu January 19, 2012

Schock Says Repeal of CLASS Act is Likely

Rep. Aaron Schock (R-18, Ill.)

Congressman Aaron Schock (R-18) of Illinois said a bill he has co-sponsored has cleared the House Ways and Means Committee.

The bill would repeal a part of the health care reform act called the CLASS Act.. The act would offer insurance that would pay for long-term care such as assisted living. The Department of Health and Human Services said in October the program is not viable for the long term. The deparment canceled the program.

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Gun Owners Say They Abide by the Law
1:34 pm
Thu January 19, 2012

Gun Ban Case Heard by Illinois Supreme Court

An assault weapon
Wikipedia

The  Illinois Supreme Court heard arguments this week in a case challenging  Cook County's ban on assault weapons.

Three gun owners say  they're law-abiding citizens and only use their firearms for recreation  and self-defense.

Edward  Ronkowski represents the men.  He told the justices the law was too  broad, and gave an example  of someone buying a rifle. The owner could  make sure he was in  compliance with the ordinance by verifying the gun  would accept  only a four-round clip.

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