At least one area high school will accept a $2500 dollar contribution from a local auto dealer to set up an app that could save lives in the event of a school shooting. Green Toyota will give Ball-Chatham schools the money to set up the Hero 9-11 system at Glenwood High School. Green Toyota has also offered to set up the system at Sacred Heart-Griffin and the three district 1-86 high schools, but those four schools have not made a final decision. The app would trigger an alert on a smart phone to law enforcement within a 10-15 miles radius of the effected school, allowing both on and on duty officers in the area to respond to the distress call. The app would only be able to be activated by teachers and only while they are on school property.
In the past year-and-a-half, police were called to the Bel-Aire Motel 600 times … 100 of those calls are grounds for the beleaguered Springfield landmark to be considered a chronic nuisance.
That’s according to new numbers gathered by Alderman Cory Jobe in an effort to shut down the motel.
Jobe will present more details about the hundreds of calls to the Bel-Aire during Tuesday’s Committee of the Whole where aldermen will consider an ordinance to use a chronic nuisance code to shut the facility down.
The Houston administration says they are already working the legal channels to address the issues at the motel.
It was a man, not a woman that died in a single vehicle accident late Monday evening.
The Sangamon County Sheriff’s office is correcting initial reports of that accident saying law enforcement learned it was a 35-year-old male occupant that was later pronounced dead when the 2004 Jeep Cherokee crashed on Waverly Road in the southwest part of the county.
Sangamon County Undersheriff Jack Campbell says accident reconstruction crews continue their investigation.
Voters will get the chance to sound off on the so-called millionaire surcharge this November, after Governor Pat Quinn signed the nonbinding referendum into law.
The measure would ask voters if higher income taxes should be levied on residents making more than a million dollars in order to pay for education.
A measure from House Speaker Mike Madigan to impose a surcharge on millionaires in the state failed to get enough support in the general assembly.
Critics of the non-binding referendum say it’s a ploy by democrats to get their base to the polls.
An investigation at Hope Institute for Children and Families has been resolved saying there was abuse or neglect, and the state ban on new admissions to the school for the developmentally disabled on East Hazel Dell continues.
The case trigged by a student’s injury back in November indicated an incident of abuse with Hope firing an employee believed to be involved.
The Sangamon County State’s Attorney says no criminal charges have been filed, according to the State Journal-Register.
Hope officials continue to work on a corrective-action plan, including staff training and better record-keeping.
Two state fair managers have been disciplined for their roles in improperly gifted beer tickets, according to a summary judgment from the Executive Ethics Commission.
Illinois State Fair Manager Amy Bliefnick, who was suspended for two days and fined $1,000, is said to have accepted over $500 in free beer tickets from vendors.
The judgment issued late last week says Bliefnick gave those tickets to employees of the Department of Agriculture.
Meanwhile former DuQuoin State Fair manager John Rednour was fined $5,000 for accepting several thousand beer tickets from vendors. Rednour was asked to step down from his position.
A fatal accident on Waverly Road late Monday claimed the life of a female occupant.
The single-vehicle crash is under investigation. Sangamon County Undersheriff Jack Campbell say it’s unknown whether alcohol was a factor in the crash.
Springfield Police and the Secretary of State Police Bomb Squad responded to a report of a suspicious device Monday evening in downtown Springfield.
Police say the device found at the 600 block of E. Washington was an improvised explosive device.
A press release says police responded to a report, established a perimeter and the bomb squad rendered the device safe. An investigation is ongoing.
A Chicago Doctor faked pot paperwork, according to a complaint from the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation.
The complaint says Dr. Joseph Strakman charged patients $250 to get a certificate for medical marijuana. One patient got a certificate with a state seal, but the state hasn’t issued any medical cannabis permits.
A statement from IDFPR says the state will prosecute doctors attempting to work outside of the medical marijuana pilot program.
It could cost more to salt winter roads in Sangamon County after the state’s Central Management Services announced it was unable to obtain supplies for nearly 200 cities and counties.
The previous brutal winter hit road salt supplies and drove up prices.
That could impact county highways, but the State Journal-Register reports Springfield Public Works extended their previous contract for road salt and have new equipment that cuts down on how much salt is used on freezing roads.
A one-vehicle wreck on Waverly Road Monday night has taken the life of a female occupant of the vehicle.
Sangamon County Undersheriff Jack Campbell says authorities were notified of the wreck just after 9:30pm Monday night. Accident reconstructionists were on the scene late Monday to determine what happened.
Campbell says it is unknown whether alcohol was a factor in the crash.
Springfield police are investigating an incident in which an apparent pipe bomb -- described as an "improvised explosve device" -- was located on a downtown street.
The device was found in the 600 block of East Washington at around 6:20pm Monday evening. Police established a perimeter around the device and called in the Secretary of State's Bomb Squad, which safely defused the device.
There was no immediate information about who may have planted the device or why. Police are asking anyone with information about the incident to contact Crimestoppers at 788-8427.
Managers of Illinois’ two state fairs have been disciplined for taking beer tickets in violation of the state Ethics Act’s ban on gifting.
DuQuoin Fair Manager John Rednour and Illinois State Fair Manager Amy Bliefnick were given summary judgments by the Executive Ethics Commission late last week.
The decision sites Rednour getting several thousand beer tickets from a vendor for free.
Bliefnick is said to have taken hundreds of dollars in beer tickets from vendors for free and distributing those tickets to Department of Agriculture employees.
Bliefnick was suspended for two days without pay and ultimetly fined $1,000. Rednour is no longer employed by the State of Illinois and was fined $5,000.
A Springfield Alderman says the time is right to use an excess of money in city coffers to help pay down public safety pensions, but the Houston Administration says they’re remaining cautious.
Ward 7’s Joe McMenamin says the excess of more than $2 million in Payment in Lieu of Taxes, or PILOT, from the public utility should be split between the unfunded liability for Police and Firefighters.
But, Budget Director Bill McCarty says there are too many uncertainties in the future.
McCarty says beyond the potential $1.5 million EPA bill, and more than half-a-million unbudgeted for a new fire truck; there is also a loss of money from a telecommunications tax and other revenue lines.
Alderman will debate the ordinance Tuesday during the Committee of the Whole.
A proposed change to Springfield’s approved ward map is about keeping an historic neighborhood together, not about politics, according to supporters of the measure.
Michelle Higginbotham from the Enos Park Neighborhood Association says a proposal from Alderman Sam Cahnman to make minor changes to Ward 3 and Ward 5 keeps Enos Park from being split between the two wards and is intended to give the neighborhood one point of contact at the city.
Opponents of the measure say changing the map now sets a precedent they’re not willing to set.
Aldermen will debate the proposed change during Tuesday’s Committee of the Whole.
The installation of fiber optic lines is closing 3rd Street between Capitol Avenue and Jackson Streets in Springfield starting Monday.
The city encourages a detour along 2nd street. The work is expected to last one week, weather permitting. Meanwhile construction on a sewer cave in will close parts of 9th Street at South Grand Avenue.
The southbound lane on 9th street will only be able to turn right onto South Grand and detour the closure while the two left lanes of South Grand will be closed. Work is expected to take about a week.
A press release from the City of Springfield says motorists should plan for an alternative route and disregarding “Road Closed” or “Do Not Enter” signs are subject to a $250.00 fine.
Springfield Aldermen will decide this week how to act on a measure to give more money to the police and fire pension funds.
The ordinance sponsored by Aldermen Joe McMenamin, Steve Dove and Tim Griffin would take Payment in Lieu of Taxes—or PILOT money—that exceeds budgeted amounts and transfer it from the corporate fund to the police and fire pension funds.
Springfield aldermen will debate the measure that would transfer over two million dollars to the two funds Tuesday during the Springfield City Council Committee of the Whole.
A report from the Better Government Association raises questions about a recently appointed legislative inspector general.
The report says William Roberts’ experience as a state’s attorney, chief aide to a governor, and a registered lobbyist may be overshadowed by the financial and political ties his law firm has with leading democrats and republican legislators.
BGA says the Chicago-based law firm Roberts worked for, Hinshaw and Culbertson LLP, had a contract with House Speaker Mike Madigan for six years in the early 2000s, with Roberts representing Madigan during an investigation about misuse of state resources.
That investigation ended in 2005 with no charges filed. Roberts is a past Sangamon County State’s Attorney and also a U.S. attorney who was an aide to former Governor Jim Edgar.
More cameras could be headed to courtrooms in Illinois as part of the ongoing pilot program with half a dozen counties in Central Illinois requesting participation.
The Associated Press reports participation requests should be submitted to the state’s Supreme Court by this fall. Sangamon, Greene, Jersey, Macoupin, Morgan and Scott counties hope to join 40 other counties that are already taking part in the pilot program.
Critics of the program say cameras in courtrooms can be disruptive and undermine a defendant’s right to a fair trial.
A southern Illinois prison guard is recovering from a concussion after an altercation with an inmate.
he St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that the prisoner head butted the guard Friday morning at the Shawnee Correctional Center in Vienna.
The inmate has been transferred to a maximum security facility while an investigation is ongoing.
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