EMERGENCY PERSONNEL RESPOND TO I-70 ACCIDENT
Illinois State Police, the Bond County Sheriff's Department and the Pocahontas Old/Ripley Fire Department responded around 10AM Wednesday to an accident at the 37-mile marker eastbound on I-70. Emergency personnel were dispatched to what was described as a "head-on-collision". The accident involved an SUV and smaller car. The driver of the car was extricated from the vehicle, taken to Greenville Regional Hospital and transferred to a St. Louis hospital. No one in the SUV was injured. WGEL will have additional details as they become available.
INCENTIVE PLAN APPROVED TO HELP RE-OPEN FORD DEALERSHIP
The Greenville City Council met Tuesday night and passed an incentive plan, pending Ford Motor Company’s approval, that will help re-open the former Taylor Derrick Ford Store in Greenville as a satellite of Tri Ford of Highland. Dave Rehkemper owner of Tri Ford in Highland agreed to several improvements to the property in exchange for incentives based on gross sales that will be paid by the city to Tri Ford over the next 4 years. According to City Manager Dave Willey, Rehkemper is prepared to open as soon as Ford grants its approval. In agreeing to the incentives the city will be saving 17 jobs at the facility as well as rescuing lost sales tax revenue. Willey estimated that the incentives starting at .9 percent of sales the first year will drop each year to .2 percent the fourth year and will amount to $140,000 to $150,000 over the 4 year period.
In other action the city heard a clean bill of health from its auditors. The council granted Country View Inn approval for a sign variance so it can accommodate new signs needed to become an Econo Lodge Franchise. Country view was the former Best Western. They voted to extend city water to a half dozen potential customers on Bowman Drive. Under old business Dave Willey told the council that the Beaumont Avenue project was complete with the exception of some minor changes and cleanup and the council looked at several other road projects to consider for work next spring. They adjourned into executive session to discuss purchase of real estate, sale of real estate, pending litigation and personnel.
COUNTY ZONING BOARD OKAYS REQUESTS
The Bond County Zoning Board of Appeals gave its okay to two requests presented Tuesday night. The first was a rezoning request for a 10 x 26 foot section of property by Herring’s Antiques. There is currently a billboard advertising a restaurant on the property which requires a C-1 designation rather than the existing A-1.
The second request was for a special use permit from Tom Hentz who wants to open an outfitters, taxidermy, and gun sales business on 190 acres in Central and Old Ripley Townships.
Both requests were approved by the zoning board but must get final approval by the Bond County Board.
LAURA WEISS RETURNS FROM DUBLIN MARATHON
As reported earlier by WGEL, a Greenville woman has spent this past year raising money for the Leukemia/Lymphoma Foundation. Recently, she went to Dublin, Ireland to walk in a 26.2-mile marathon through Teams In Training of the St. Louis Gateway Chapter for Leukemia/Lymphoma. Laura Weiss is back home and talked to WGEL about her trip. She said that there were 220 participants from Teams In Training and, they alone, raised over $1.1 million for the Leukemia/Lymphoma society.
Weiss said the weather was very good on the day of the marathon, and that the people of the city lined the streets and cheered the participants on. Every time her team would walk by, they would yell "Well done girls…good job!". The night before the event there was a pasta dinner and some people who had lost loved ones to Leukemia/Lymphoma told their stories which were very encouraging and helped everyone to get through the marathon.
Weiss spent the majority of the year training daily for this marathon by walking 2-4 miles through the week and 12-24 on the weekends. In the end, Weiss and her friend were able to cross the finish line "running" and finished the race in 7 hrs and 27 minutes. She stated that for her it was a very good experience and after hearing people share their stories, it made her realize why she did it.
This is the 26th year that Dublin has held this marathon. There were over 22,200 participants on October 30th, all racing for various causes.
GREAT AMERICAN SMOKEOUT IS TODAY
The American Cancer Society’s annual “Great American Smokeout” is today. This event challenges people to stop using tobacco and raises awareness of the many effective ways to quit for good. Research shows that smokers are most successful in kicking the habit when they have some means of support, such as nicotine replacement products and the encouragement of friends and family.
The idea for the Great American Smokeout grew out of a 1974 event in Minnesota. The idea caught on and the American Cancer Society took it nationwide in 1977. Today, an estimated 45 million American adults smoke.
For more information on how to kick the habit, go to the American Cancer Society website or call your local health department.
ILLINOIS SENATE PASSES MINIMUM WAGE LEGISLATION
The Illinois State Senate has passed Governor Blagojevich's proposed legislation to increase the minimum wage. Under terms of Senate Bill 1275, the minimum wage would rise by $1.00 an hour to $7.50 an hour starting July 1, 2007. Then in January 2008, the minimum wage would be indexed to inflation to provide an annual wage adjustment to help with rising costs. Working 40 hours a week, 52 weeks a year at the current minimum wage is an annual salary just over $13,000 a year. Nearly 650,00 men and women in Illinois work for the minimum wage. Senate Bill 1275 now moves to the Illinois House of Representatives for consideration.
OCTOBER WET – NINTH COLDEST ON RECORD
October temperatures were four-degrees below normal and the ninth coldest October on record. Temperatures across the state dropped to the freezing mark or lower for the first time this fall, which effectively ended the 2006 growing season. Historically, a colder-than-normal October does not increase the chance for a cold winter. Previous cold Octobers were more likely to be followed by December – February periods with temperatures near normal. The National Weather Service Winter outlook still calls for an increased chance of temperatures above normal across Illinois and precipitation below normal in the southern two-thirds of the state.
Rain totals for the city of Greenville from 6am Wednesday through 6am this morning were .83 at the waste water treatment plant on Route 40, .89 at 6th Street, and .75 at Idler Lane and Route 140. There was no snow reported
KC BOARD WILL MEET THURSDAY
The Kaskaskia College Board of Trustees is meeting tonight at 7PM. On the agenda is the approval of a contractor for renovations of the One Stop Center in Centralia; approval of the tax levy; and reports on KC's capital projects. The meeting is in the board room on the main campus.
LISTEN TO WGEL FOR YOUR CHANCE TO WIN RONNIE MCDOWELL CONCERT TICKETS
Country favorite Ronnie McDowell is performing Saturday, November 18 at 7pm at Nashville North USA in Taylorville. Mike and John have tickets to give away on Friday morning. Sometime between 6 and 8am Friday, they’ll play Ronnie’s 1981 hit song “Wandering Eyes.” When you hear it, be caller #5 or caller #6 and you’ll win a pair of tickets to the concert. You must be 18 or older and may only win once. Only one winner per family.
Ronnie McDowell concert tickets for Nashville North this Friday morning on the Mike and John Show on WGEL.
ALL CONFERENCE HONORS ANNOUNCED
Several Comets and Lady Comets athletes have been voted to All Conference honors.
Ryan Mulholland, Second Team, Zach Nolker, Honorable Mention
Hanna Elliott and Katy Gilmore, First Team, Jessie Miller and Tracy Miller, Second Team
Josh Fohne and Ike Perfetti, First Team Linemen, Josh Hulvey, First Team Running Back
Josh Tebbe, First Team Quarterback, Derek Atchison, Honorable Mention Wide Receiver
Nick Koonce, Honorable Mention Running Back
Dustin Sharp, First Team Lineman, Michael Bradley, First Team Linebacker
Josh Tebbe and Erik Fohne, First Team Defensive Backs, Nick Koonce, Honorable Mention Linebacker
HS GIRLS BASKETBALL
The Varsity Lady Comets lost their opener to Piasa Southwestern 53-31. Amy Schaufelberger had 19 points and 9 rebounds. Niqui Reinhard added 9 points. The JV Lady Comets lost 41-40.
JR HIGH BOYS BASKETBALL
The Sorento Greyhounds JV team was a 31-27 winner over the Greenville Bluejays. Alex Bone had 10 points for Sorento and Dylan Carr 8 points for Greenville. The Bluejays won the second game 30-29 with Mike Williams leading with 8 points. Johnathon Elliott scored 10 for Sorento.