on sound financial
course, says treasurer
19, 2001] The
city of Lincoln is on a sound fiscal course, City Treasurer Lester
Plotner told the City Council members at a recent meeting, after
presenting the aldermen with a detailed report for the fiscal year
ending April 30, 2001.
city treasurer, I believe the City Council operates within the
framework of fiscally responsible perimeters, which allows many
services to be provided without undue stress to the taxpayers in
Lincoln," he said in his report.
most of you realize, you can’t be all things to all people when
governing a city, but you can strive to serve the majority of the
citizens in an efficient and reasonable manner.
must think about tomorrow when making decisions today which may
affect the financial stability of the city of Lincoln," he
said. "Council members should look to past fiscal patterns to
make decisions about spending and suggested improvements," he
help the aldermen understand these past fiscal patterns, Plotner
presented them with reports on income and expenditures, complete
with breakdowns of revenue and costs, graphs, summaries, and
city’s general fund for the past fiscal year, 2001, went down when
compared with previous years: $1,642,500 compared with the year 2000
total of $2,311,719. That was because last year the city completed a
number of road rehabilitation projects, more than were done the year
before, according to Melanie Riggs, deputy city clerk.
year the city also took a "double hit" on the payroll
increases, Riggs said, because of salary increases for members of
police, fire, street and alley, and clerical departments, increases
that were not paid in fiscal year 2000 because the union contracts
were not settled.
revenue funds, however, went up from last year: $1,316,000 in 2001
compared with $982,724 for 2000.
enterprise fund was down from fiscal year 2000 and particularly from
fiscal year 1999. The 2001 fund contained only $137,702, against
$437,229 for the year 2000 and $2,151,763 for 1999. These funds,
which come from sewerage revenues, were used for the west side sewer
project and the beginning of the sewage treatment plant upgrade.
[to top of second column in
increased from $6,167 to $657,570, largely because of the downtown
enhancement grant that paid for the renovation of downtown
income increased from $968,724 in 1999-2000 to $1,262,206 for
2000-2001. However, Plotner has warned the council several times
that interest rates are very low and will probably not rise in the
near future, so the city should be prepared to see less revenue from
this source. Plotner has been investing police and fire pension
funds in Illinois Funds (previously the Illinois Public Treasurer’s
Investment Pool), a state-run fund, when that fund has better
interest rates than can be found at local banks.
fuel tax funds, an important source of revenue, went up 7.9 percent
last year, and state income tax funds, another important revenue
source, were 3.2 percent higher than last year. Sales taxes, a third
important source, increased $19,825 over last fiscal year. Plotner
said that the state of the economy, less spending than usual and the
lowering of the rate of tax by the state of Illinois for a period of
time probably made this figure lower than it would otherwise have
fiscal year 2001, the city got $43,638 in drug forfeiture funds,
compared to zero dollars last year. This came from the Drug Task
Force, which covers Lincoln and other communities in central
sources that went down last fiscal year were building permits, a 26
percent decrease, and property taxes, a 1.9 percent decrease over
the previous year.
Overall, the city spent
1.77 percent less money in fiscal year 2001 than in 2000, though
more than was spent in 1999. Expenditures for 2001 were $9,960,723;
for 2000 they were $10,140,811; and for 1999, $8,705,909.
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ceremony marks dedication of donations for New York City families
19, 2001] A
fund-raising effort that began with a moving ceremony on the
courthouse lawn ended with an equally moving ceremony in the
third-floor courtroom Thursday evening, when about 250 Logan County
firefighters, paramedics and police officers saw the unveiling of a
check for the families of their New York City "brothers and
sisters" who died in the World Trade Center tragedy.
check, for $32,540, represents something that Logan County Board
Chairman Dick Logan was hoping for at the beginning of the fund
drive but didn’t really expect, a dollar for every resident of the
represents, too, the brotherhood felt by the rescue workers here
with those in New York City who died trying to save the lives of
of us have a bond of brotherhood," said Norma Bathe,
firefighter, EMT and 911 vice chairman from Hartsburg, who is also a
fifth-grade teacher at Hartsburg-Emden School. "Our
firefighters share the grief and sadness of those in New York
generous contributions are also evidence of the renewed respect and
appreciation Logan County residents feel for their own firefighters,
paramedics and police, as well as their ability to come together in
Police Chief Rich Montcalm remembers how moved he was on Sept. 14
when the crowd at the outdoor ceremony on the north lawn of the
courthouse began clapping and cheering as police, firefighters and
paramedics began marching from City Hall to the courthouse.
hadn’t expected that emotion for law enforcement," he told
the audience. "It was a new emotion of support."
community had extraordinarily come together. After the ceremony, I
talked to a senior citizen who told me Lincoln always comes together
when times get tough."
more than anything else, the Logan County contribution helps to
prove that, although the terrorists destroyed American buildings and
took American lives, they could not destroy American values.
brought us together more than they tore us apart," said Dan
Fulscher, director of the Logan County Emergency Services and
Disaster Agency and one of the organizers of the fund-raising drive.
was not just an attack on the World Trade Center or the
Pentagon," state Rep. Jonathan Wright told the audience.
"It was an attack on our values. Our enemies attacked the very
thing they could never destroy."
who came to the courthouse Thursday evening were greeted by a huge,
lighted American flag, seemingly hanging in midair across from the
north lawn. Supported by a firetruck lift, the flag is a gift to the
Lincoln Fire Department from businessman Gene Burwell.
check presentation opened with a welcome by Norma Bathe and a
candle-lighting ceremony, in which representatives from all the
fire, rescue and police departments in the county came forward and
lit a candle.
for Armington, Atlanta, Beason, Broadwell, Chestnut, Cornland,
Elkhart, Emden, Hartsburg, Latham, Lincoln City, Lincoln Rural,
Lincoln and Logan County government and ESDA, Logan County
Paramedics Association, Logan County Sheriff’s Department and
Auxiliary Police, Middletown, Mount Pulaski, New Holland, San Jose
and Williamsville all lit candles.
[to top of second column in
candle, a black one in the center of the candelabrum, remained
unlit. It stood for the firefighters who died in New York City.
Turley, wearing traditional kilts, played "Amazing Grace"
on the bagpipes, and Debbie Ross sang "America the
Beautiful" and led the audience in singing "God Bless
America" at the end of the program.
Wright, who introduced the various speakers, said that Americans had
witnessed the beginning of a war on Sept. 11, and he prayed for the
day when Americans will be able to remember the end of this war, as
they remember Armistice Day as the end of World War I and V-J Day as
the end of World War II.
Logan offered a prayer and then told the audience he was happy to
see people helping each other the way they should. "I am proud
to be part of Logan County," he said.
County Circuit Court Clerk Carla Bender echoed his sentiments.
"My heart is full of pride to be part of this community,"
she told the audience. The tragedy, she said, will make us love our
family and community with a little more awareness. "We will hug
our kids a little tighter and be nicer to our fellow citizens."
Siltman, Logan County EMS, said the police, fire and EMS represent
service, integrity and preparedness, and they work together with
way we can send a message to the Taliban is do as President Bush
says, resume our normal lives. Sending assistance to the families of
the fallen sends another message to the Taliban," he added.
days ago, a terrorist act took the lives of thousands of people, and
hundreds of emergency workers perished and will never be forgotten.
The lessons we learned are that we must prepare for the unthinkable
and the unimaginable," said Mark Miller, representing the
Lincoln Fire Department.
Fire Chief Bucky Washam rang the fire bell, the "last
alarm" in honor of the firefighters who died.
no mistake, America is at war," Fulscher said. He told the
crowd how moved he was when several women came to Wal-Mart and
volunteered to set up chairs for the fund drive, and when
"little kids with quarters" made their contributions.
"When we started fund-raising, Dick Logan said if we got
$10,000 he would be elated. Well, we stormed past $10,000 and
$20,000 to bring in $32,540," he said, before turning to ask
Mary Ellen Bruns, Logan County treasurer, and Dianne Ruff, ESDA
office manager, to unveil the giant facsimile of the check.
us not just mark tonight by remembering," Wright said in
closing. "Look forward, strive to bring honor to those who lost
their lives, who kept responding without any hesitation, not knowing
what was on the other side of the situation.
"Cling to the values
that make this the greatest country on the face of the earth."
bids to be let
for new Central School
18, 2001] The
first set of bids for the new Central School construction will be
opened on Nov. 20, and the District 27 board will have a special
meeting Nov. 21 to accept the low bids.
first five "packages" to be bid will be for grading and
site preparation, site utilities, drilled piers, foundations, and
concrete flatwork, according to architect Dave Leonatti and
construction manager Bill Ahal.
more-than-usual amount of site preparation must be done before
Lincoln’s third Central School can be built behind the present
Central School. The new school will face Seventh Street and will be
located on roughly the same site the first Central School occupied.
first Central School, built about 1867, shortly after the Civil War,
was demolished and used as fill to level the ground after the second
Central School, which faces Eighth Street, was built in 1915.
Because of the fill and also because of generally poor soil
conditions, the third Central School will have a drilled pier
foundation to keep the building stabilized.
will be sunk to various depths on the site, until they reach stable
soil. Then the piers will be connected with reinforced concrete
beams. The concrete floor will be poured on top of this foundation,
this can be done, the site must be cleared of tennis courts, fences
and playground equipment, and the sewer line must be moved. The new
8-inch sewer, which will connect to the sewer line on Union Street,
will be capable of serving both the old and the new Central Schools
while they are both in operation, according to Leonatti.
bids will be advertised in newspapers and industry outlets in
central Illinois, including Bloomington, Peoria, Decatur, Champaign,
Springfield and Lincoln. Leonatti said that if possible he will use
local contractors, although he did not think there were Lincoln
firms who would be able to do the foundation work.
said he hopes to get some work done on the site before the end of
the year. He told the board that drawings for the entire Central
School project are 85 to 90 percent complete. Getting the bids out
in the various packages is "to our advantage," he said,
because some bids can be let soon, while contractors are looking for
work and prices for materials are low.
student council officers from Washington-Monroe School, who were
attending the meeting, were invited by board president Bruce
Carmitchel to study the blueprints. Arielle Alley, president; Nickie
Kodatt, vice president; Jessie Owen, secretary; and Kelsey Dallas,
treasurer, took advantage of the opportunity to get a "sneak
preview" of the plans for the new school.
Title I grant funds received
Robert Kidd announced that the district has had an additional Title
I grant from the State Board of Education of $133,282. This, added
to the original grant of $186,127, gives the district $319,409 for
[to top of second column in
board approved an agreement with the Illinois Historic Preservation
Agency to preserve the history of the present Central School by
means of photographs and other documents.
may ‘lend’ outdated computers
board also discussed how to handle disposal of outdated and unused
computer equipment. According to law the school district cannot give
such equipment away, and usually no one wants to buy it, so the
board discussed whether they might "lend" outdated
computers to other groups who might be able to use them, such as
Christian Village and the Sunshine Before and After School Program.
Superintendent Robert Kidd was authorized to put the computers up
for sale; then, if no buyers respond, to lend them to other
costs, salaries below state average
board also approved making copies of the 2001 Illinois School Report
Card available to students to take home to parents.
report shows that in 1999-2000, District 27 spent less than the
state average both for instructional expenses and operating
expenses: $3,673 per pupil for instruction, compared with $4,425 for
the state average, and $5,571 per pupil operating expenses, compared
with the state average of $7,483.
average teacher salary in District 27, $39,689, is less than the
state average of $47,914; and the average administrator’s salary,
$69,966, is less than the state average of $84,273.
meet state average on ISAT tests
the overall performance of elementary students last year on the
Illinois Standards Achievement Test was average for the state. Dr.
Kidd pointed out that the scores of special education students are
included in these averages.
the district, third-grade students were about average in reading and
writing and slightly lower in math, while fourth-grade students were
several points above average in both science and social science.
grade five, students were a little below average in reading and
mathematics but above average in writing.
grade seven, students lagged in both science and social science,
while in grade eight students were just slightly below average in
reading but slightly above average in mathematics and writing.
The regular meeting date
for the board has been changed to Nov. 13, and a special meeting has
been set for 6 p.m. Nov. 21 to accept bids for the first phases of
the work on the new school.
Wright attends governor’s briefing on domestic preparedness
17, 2001] State
Rep. Jonathan Wright, R-Hartsburg, attended a briefing Monday on the
state of Illinois’ preparedness for a potential terrorist attack.
George Ryan conducted the briefing in the wake of the Sept. 11
terrorist attacks in New York, Washington, D.C., and Pennsylvania to
update legislators and state and local officials on Illinois’
emergency response plan should a terrorist attack occur in our
state. Rep. Wright said the governor’s main message was, "We
our lives may never be the same following the tragic events of Sept.
11, local families should be reassured that our state emergency and
health officials are on alert and prepared to respond to any
terrorist threat in Illinois," Wright said.
said the governor reported on the progress of the state’s
Terrorism Task Force, created last year to assess the strengths and
weaknesses within our response plan and to coordinate response
efforts at the local level. The task force includes 64 special
response teams, 32 of which are specially trained to respond to a
biological, chemical or nuclear incident. Wright also noted that the
state’s Department of Health has activated its statewide Health
Alert Network so that any indication of biological or chemical
threats can be immediately detected and reported.
[to top of second column in
Monday the governor also proposed additional measures to increase
preparedness statewide, including a series of regional training
seminars to be conducted by the Illinois Emergency Management Agency
for local government and residents, and a soon-to-be-announced
emergency spending package to help identify and address security
needs in cities and rural areas.
impossible to be completely prepared for any possible type of attack
a terrorist could devise, I’m confident that the state is doing
everything possible to safeguard the public," Wright concluded.
"And we must remember that the best way we can all help defeat
the terrorist threat is to simply go on with our daily lives."
release from Rep. Jonathan Wright]
budget meeting set for Oct. 25; zoning issue returns to appeals
17, 2001] Facing
a deficit of approximately half a million dollars in its fiscal year
2002 budget, the Logan County Board voted Tuesday night to ask all
officeholders and department heads to review their budgets for
possible cuts. Board members will meet with their auditor at 7 p.m.,
Oct. 25, in the first-floor boardroom to set figures in the
approximately $5 million budget. Final action will be taken at the
November board meeting.
to the proposed budget discussed Tuesday night include a 3.4 percent
increase in the Oasis and CIEDC portions of the senior citizens tax,
$3,000 each for extra part-time help for the board’s secretary and
the county treasurer, $12,000 in additional requests for the Logan
County Health Department and $23,333 for non-union salary increases
of 3.4 percent. Tentative deletions include $15,000 previously
slated for economic development, $147,500 for county offices and
$10,000 for a 4x4 for ESDA.
reviewing these and other changes requested since Thursday’s work
session, Finance Committee Chairman Rod White said, "We’re
still faced with a deficit budget of about $500,000." In the
first year the county is fortunate enough to have a surplus, and no
personnel or programs will be eliminated, he said, but if the
deficit continues for a second year, board members will have to
also pointed out that the tentative budget contains no money for
extra security or for new economic development initiatives. A memo
read at the meeting announced formation of a Homeland Security
Committee consisting of Sheriff Tony Soloman, board Chairman Dick
Logan, Law Enforcement Committee Chairman Doug Dutz and Insurance
Committee Chairman Dale Voyles. The committee is charged with
improving security in the seven county buildings. In addition, Logan
County Economic Development Director Mark Smith announced an
informational meeting at Lincoln College on Oct. 24. The meeting, to
be at 7 p.m. in the McKinstry Library lecture room, will present a
proposal for economic development.
zoning matter, an issue on which a straw vote was taken at Thursday
night’s meeting was returned to the Zoning Board of Appeals.
Amending a motion by Planning and Zoning Committee Chairman David
Hepler, the board voted 7-6 to return to the appeals board Carol
Litwiller’s request to rezone 2.1 acres of agricultural land so it
can be divided for building two homes. Voting in favor of the
amendment were Roger Bock, Paul Gleason, Dick Logan, Gloria Luster,
Dale Voyles, Terry Werth and Rod White, while Tom Cash, Doug Dutz,
Jim Griffin, David Hepler and Clifford Sullivan opposed it.
procedure is for the Planning and Zoning Committee to hear a zoning
request first, but Litwiller was unable to attend the scheduled
meeting. The appeals board then considered the case and voted 5-0 to
deny the request. Later it was discovered that the term of one
appeals board member, Wilbur Paulus, had expired in December 2000.
[to top of second column in
Board member Cash charged that the "Zoning Board of Appeals
acted more or less out of order" when it met before the
Planning and Zoning Committee had acted. State’s Attorney Tim
Huyett said that while hearings by both bodies are required, the
reversed order was not necessarily illegal. Voyles made the motion
to send the issue back to the appeals board.
in the meeting board Chairman Dick Logan’s reappointment of Paulus
to the Logan County Zoning Board of Appeals was approved by an 11-2
margin, with Dutz and Griffin opposing. The five-year term was made
retroactive to December 2000. Paulus has served on the appeals board
other appointments were unanimously approved. Judith S. Emrick will
fill L.K. Buckles’s unexpired term on the Housing Authority of
Logan County. Buckles resigned the position. Alderman Dave Armbrust
will serve on the Regional Planning Commission. At the request of
Mayor Beth Davis, Armbrust replaces fellow Alderman Michael Montcalm,
who was unable to attend the meetings.
unanimous vote authorized Airport Chairman Roger Bock to bid on a
tractor and bat-wing mower at an Illinois Department of
Transportation surplus sale Oct. 25.
Director Dan Fulscher said that police are to be trained Wednesday
to collect and seal suspicious mail. Sheriff Tony Soloman and Police
Chief Rich Montcalm will determine case by case whether there is a
credible threat and, if so, send the sample to a lab for testing.
Fulscher echoed Soloman, "Let’s not succumb to panic."
resident Pete Fredericks protested to the board about having to pay
for a second septic system permit when the first system, installed
according to Logan County Health Department dictates, failed in 2½
years. Fredericks said he did not put undue demand on the system.
"There are only two of us and the dog," he said, "and
we make the dog go outdoors." Fredericks was advised to consult
the Health Department board.
Superintendent of Schools George Janet and Logan County Supervisor
of Assessments Rosanne Brosamer have moved into the Dr. John Logan
County Building, according to board member Terry Werth. He thanked
Soloman for assisting in the move.
Board member Paul Gleason
reported his work on computerizing information contained in county
documents from the 1850s and ’60s. He said he will make copies of
relevant documents for display in county offices.
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to benevolent fund will be dedicated Thursday
17, 2001] A
candlelight service at 7 p.m. Thursday will dedicate money collected
for the benevolent fund for the families of New York City emergency
workers killed in the terrorist attack. Members of the police and
fire departments and Emergency Services Disaster Agency will
participate, and the public is invited to the service, to be in the
third-floor courtroom at the Logan County Courthouse.
rates will go up on Jan. 1
16, 2001] Bowing
to the inevitable, the Lincoln City Council voted unanimously Monday
night to increase sewer rates so it can qualify for a state loan to
upgrade the city’s wastewater treatment plant.
think it is necessary," Alderman Michael Montcalm, chairman of
the ordinance committee, told the council. "This is probably
the most important vote we will have here for quite a while."
resolution mandates that the first tier of rate increases will go
into effect by Jan. 1, 2002. For residents who live inside the city
limits, monthly rates will go from $11 to $14. For those who live
outside the city, rates will go from $12 to $17.52 a month.
based on actual usage will go up for commercial, industrial and
institutional users as well, some of them substantially.
first tier of increases is expected to be in effect for 18 months;
then, if the city does not find any other funding and has to finance
the full $9.8 cost of the upgrade, a second tier of raises will have
to be made.
the final plan, or "worst case scenario," which would take
effect 18 months later, city residents would pay $16.39 monthly, and
out-of-city residents would pay $22.31. Commercial, industrial and
institutional users would also pay more.
more details, see Oct. 10 LDN article: "Two-step
plan suggested for sewer rate increase."]
"worst case scenario," could be lower than predicted if
the city can tap some other sources of funding. Grant Eaton, sewer
plant manager, said he is applying for various funds that could help
defray the cost and is also hoping to get an Illinois FIRST grant.
sewer plant must be upgraded to keep it in compliance with Illinois
Environmental Protection Agency requirements. If the plant violates
state requirements, the IEPA can refuse to permit new hookups and
will stop residential, commercial and industrial growth in the city.
week the Lincoln wastewater plant had its first state violation
because of a large input of ammonia, Eaton said. If the new plant
had already been upgraded as planned, it would have been able to
handle the extra load, but the city now has its first violation on
the books. New standards for ammonia, which went into effect Oct. 1,
will make it even harder for the present plant to comply with state
regulations, he said.
it raises sewer rates, the city will not qualify for the 20-year
loan from the IEPA. It hopes to get the loan sometime in January
2002 and begin work on the plant upgrade in March, but delays are
possible. If red tape keeps the project from being funded in
January, the city will have to wait until October 2002 or even
January 2003 to get the money.
[to top of second column in
change approved for mental health facility
council also voted unanimously to approve a zoning change from R-2
to C-2 for property at 2018 N. Kickapoo St. This will permit
Logan-Mason Mental Health to use the facility as a adult day
treatment center from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on weekdays.
zoning change was recommended by the planning commission, and none
of the property owners in the area have objected to the change,
according to City Attorney Bill Bates. The property, formerly a
day-care center, has been vacant for many years. It will be
remodeled at a cost of about $140,000 and will serve 25 to 30
clients with a staff of seven, health center officials said.
Mental Health Director Marcia Stoll thanked the council for their
vote, saying the new facility will be much appreciated by those who
use it. She said that since 1975 the adult day treatment center has
been located in a basement with no windows and with no opportunity
for clients to go outside and walk on the grass.
set for possession of drug paraphernalia
other business, the council approved a new ordinance prohibiting the
possession of drug paraphernalia, with a fine of $750 plus court
costs for any violation. One-half of all fines will go to the Police
Department for the DARE anti-drug program and the other half to the
city, also to be used for the prevention of alcohol and drug abuse
council also approved an ordinance which will allow Bates some
leeway in levying fines when prosecuting minors convicted of drug or
alcohol abuse. By requesting court supervision instead of an
immediate conviction, Bates can set fines higher or lower than the
minimum $400 plus court costs for alcohol consumption.
other business, the council agreed to prohibit parking on the west
side of Union Street north of Woodlawn for about 72 feet. After
hearing complaints that the traffic lights at that intersection were
malfunctioning, Street Superintendent Donnie Osborne discovered that
cars parked too close to the intersection were interfering with the
sensors in the pavement.
council also approved placing a stop sign at the intersection of
Pulaski and LaDue streets, and gave Fire Chief Bucky Washam
permission to sell a 1995 firetruck which is no longer in use, for
County agencies meet to discuss protocol for suspicious mail
16, 2001] "Don’t
get in a big panic. Continue your lives as you normally do! Don’t
let these people get us running scared," says Sheriff Tony
Soloman. He continued, "We have to show them we are better and
stronger than them. We are going to deal with this, and we are going
to overcome this."
Tony Soloman also warns that any kids thinking of playing a joke on
the principal, a teacher or a friend had better not do it. This is a
serious situation, and he has conferred with the state’s attorney
and judges on this. They are together saying that they will
prosecute any copycats or pranksters to the full extent of the law.
County Sheriff’s Department, Lincoln Police Department and Lincoln
Fire Department are prepared to handle any suspicious mail received
in Logan County.
for responsible handling of mail was announced this morning at a
press conference with the sheriff, police and fire departments,
Emergency Services Disaster Agency and the Logan County Health
Department presenting information.
and Logan County have been preparing for terrorism for over a year.
Logan County finished the domestic preparedness class at the end of
August and followed that completion with written requests for aids.
handle suspicious mail
receive mail that is suspicious, if you do not know where or whom it
is from, then use the following procedure:
DO NOT OPEN IF:
Unusual or absent return address; restrictive
Excessive postage; postage and return address
do not match
Suspicious because of how it is addressed: addressed
to title only, incorrect title, or someone who no longer lives or
Oily stains, or discolorations
Wires sticking out
Odd shipping, packaging; excessive tape
If you believe your
mail is suspicious based on the above information, then the
following protocol is in effect in accordance with the FBI advisory:
Double bag the mail in sealable plastic bags
(freezer bags are preferred).
If it is simply bulk mail that you do not feel
comfortable opening, double bag it and throw it away.
If you believe it is something that needs
examination, call 911.
If you just want general information, call
your local police or sheriff’s department.
expect if you call in a suspicious package and it is deemed credible
dispatcher will stay on the line with you until someone comes to
pick up the package. They may come with an apron or mask on. It will
take time for them to get there.
[to top of second column in
the package is picked up, an officer will come to the house. Do not
be alarmed. You need to be prepared to answer questions such as: Who
has been in the house with you? Who else was in the room when you
opened it? How did you react when you opened it?
If you have your mail
You will not get the mail back.
Your mail will not be read to you; it is gone.
The lab results will not be available for some
time. The labs will be very busy.
Lincoln Fire Department is the lead agency in Logan County in
responding to hazardous materials. They have a trained hazmat rescue
team that knows what to do and can respond to any situation. The
team has equipment that includes sealed, self-contained suits with
breathing apparatus. They also have decontamination equipment.
should open something that has suspicious contents:
calm. The only serious threat from the anthrax microbe is when it is
airborne and it is inhaled. So remain calm if you should encounter a
powdery substance. Do not disturb it. Wash your hands with soap and
water; then call 911.
Evans, administrator of the Logan County Health Department, said
that the chance of contracting inhaled anthrax is slim. The anthrax
must be airborne and must be inhaled to contract disease. Anthrax is
a poor choice of a contaminating agent. It settles down very
quickly. Exposure does not ensure contraction of the disease.
will be monitoring the physical condition of people who have a
credible exposure," said Evans. "Lab testing and early
detection, and a course of antibiotic treatment will be given to
those who have a credible exposure."
health industry is facing a concern for excessive use and rush on
antibiotics. We are in the flu season, and if you are having flulike
symptoms, that is probably what you have: the flu. Do not insist on
having antibiotics if you are told you have the flu.
While this protocol may
change, and it already has since yesterday’s state meeting in
Springfield, Dan Fulscher of ESDA says he will notify Lincoln
Daily News, and he will keep all the media current.
FBI advisory below]
Department phone #: 732-4159
Department phone #: 732-2141
to vote on proposed
$5 million county budget
15, 2001] As
the Finance Committee continues to review the proposal for a new
county budget, brought forth to the board Thursday night, the
question of necessity takes center stage. Although it has been
almost nine years since Logan County has actually experienced a
deficit in the budget, board members all agreed that, realistically,
it appears that revenues are in the beginning stages of a serious
decline. At a time when, on the federal level, earnings are doing
the same, the board is looking to not only maintain an even
financial state and avoid a coming reduction, but also to give Logan
County a positive future fiscally. So a proposal of $5 million it
structured, spend-money-to-make-money standpoint, a deficit of
$583,105 for the year ending 2002 could not be avoided as a part of
the proposed budget increase. The highly publicized statue of
Abraham Lincoln, along with a nine-hole golf course to be located
within the limits of the Logan County Airport, were given a cursory
reference in regard to bringing in revenue through this particular
member and Finance Chairman Rod White presented the board with the
budget address, which also included the matter of salary increases
for the offices of probation, public defense and for the state’s
attorney, who was on hand, often fielding questions and providing
input upon request. The proposed budget will be re-examined in final
discourse among the board members and will then be voted on Tuesday
night at 7, with final adoption in 30 days. The new fiscal year
begins Dec. 1.
[to top of second column in
exchange on another issue, which brought on an impromptu straw vote,
was the rezoning of a local 7-acre agricultural property. The vote
went through on a tight 6-5 passage, splitting the board, but in
doing so, allowing two separate country homes to be built on rural
issue had already seen a recent rejection in an earlier vote, due to
incompatibilities within the county’s ordinance in regard to rural
homes. But the board’s Planning and Zoning Committee, led by David
Hepler, claims the request to rezone does in fact comply with the
statutory requirements of the ordinance, citing that those
requirements were established in the first place so that smaller
lots could be used for residential properties.
motion from board member Dale Voyles, declaring that by denying the
request, the Zoning Board of Appeals Committee was out of order,
helped the proposal to pass this time around.
property under dispute is located on Old Illinois 121 and is owned
by Carol Litwiller, who reverentially presented his case to the
force holds area hearings
on funding for nursing homes
Wright hears testimony from state officials, local providers
15, 2001] The
House Republican Long-Term Care Funding Task Force held its first
two public hearings Oct. 3, taking testimony in Springfield and
Bloomington. State Rep. Jonathan Wright, R-Hartsburg, said he was
pleased with the input task force members received today from state
agency officials as well as a number of local long-term care
are currently about 85,000 seniors and disabled people living in
Illinois nursing homes. The majority of those, 64 percent, rely on
public assistance to help pay for their nursing home stays. But in
many cases, Illinois has failed to provide adequate reimbursement
for Medicaid residents. Today, we heard firsthand from the care
providers in our area the extent of the financial hardship this
state funding shortfall has created for them," Wright said.
to Wright, the mission of the task force is to research possible
solutions to a looming funding crisis in the state’s long-term
care industry. He said testimony Oct. 3 included presentations from
representatives of the Jackson Heights facility in Farmer City, the
Apostolic Christian Timber Ridge facility in Morton and LeRoy Manor
providers’ comments are invaluable to helping us find a solution,
and every member of the task force took them to heart,"' Wright
said. "I’m looking forward to hearing directly from other
providers throughout the state as we continue our hearings."
Locations for future
scheduled hearings of the task force include Carbondale, Chicago,
Decatur, Mattoon, Danville, Carol Stream and Palos Hills.
promised, the United States led an attack on Afghanistan. The attack
began Sunday, Oct. 7. American and British military forces made 30 hits on
air defenses, military airfields and terrorist training camps,
destroying aircraft and radar systems. The strike was made targeting
than 40 countries in Africa, Asia, Europe and the Middle East have
pledged their cooperation and support the U.S. initiative.
[to top of second column in
(serving the U.S.
to be open seven days a week for leaf and brush disposal
12, 2001] The
city landfill on Broadwell Drive will be open seven days a week from
8 a.m. to 4 p.m. for leaf and brush disposal, beginning on Oct. 15,
according to Donnie Osborne, street superintendent. Plans are to
keep the new schedule in place until Dec. 15, he said.
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