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  • Parent Category: News

SBA Outreach Centers opening in Watseka, Kankakee

Flood victims can begin seeking government help this weekend and continuing next week in Iroquois and Kankakee County. Vermilion County will also get SBA support.

The U.S. Small Business Administration announces its Disaster Loan Outreach Centers (DLOC’s) will allow for applications to be submitted. The SBA will help citizens and businesses, affected by the February floods and stormy weather in March, recover from their setbacks.

The Outreach Centers will be open in Watseka, Aroma Park and Danville. Saturday hours are 10 am ‘til 2 pm. Hours next week are 9 am ‘til 6 pm Monday – Thursday. Friday hours 9 am - 4 pm.

The Iroquois County Outreach Center is at the Watseka Union Depot on S. 2nd Street.

Kankakee County has help at the Aroma Park Fire Station #1 on S. Bridge Street.

Vermilion County’s center is at the Administration Building at 201 N. Vermilion Street.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

National Police Week

Law enforcement officials gather today (Friday) at the Kankakee County Courthouse for National Police Week recognition. A week of remembering and saluting police officers begins Sunday.

Several police agencies will participate in today’s event on the north lawn of the courthouse. The program begins at 11 am. The public is welcome.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

ICE program eyeing Newton County, IN

A multi-national operator of prisons and detention facilities, turned away in Gary, IN, is now looking at Newton County.

The U.S. Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE) needs access to the Chicag0-land area and is looking at property near Roselawn, IN. The NW Times reports the ICE detainee program is interested in building an 800-bed facility.

It’s only exploratory. No solid plans have unfolded. Newton County Commissioners earlier (in March) rezoned 46 acres of land at Roselawn as a PGD (Public Government District).

The GEO Group was turned away from Gary, IN two years ago.

The ICE program is what Kankakee County has with the Rent-A-Bed program at the Jerome Combs Detention Center. It generates thousands of dollars per month in revenue.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Gilman fire destroys building, clean-up now underway

A huge, threatening fire in Gilman (Wednesday) destroyed one building, damaged a couple more and had emergency responders on edge for a while. No injuries resulted. But now the Iroquois County town is forced to clean-up.

Strong winds made fighting the flames difficult. Then, came threatening weather.

This was at the intersection of North Central and 2nd Street in Gilman. The fire broke out after 2 pm. And soon, several area fire departments were responding.
The building, an old lumberyard, was made of steel. Fire crews had a tough time gaining access.

Smoke, thick black smoke billowed. It could be seen for miles.

For almost three hours, crews were dousing the flames that destroyed the old lumberyard building. A family lived inside got out safely. People were evacuated from businesses and the Gilman Elementary School sent students to the high school.

The popular Garage – a community center, next door was damaged.

The cause was not immediately determined.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Severe Storms hit central-IL and northwest IN, no injuries reported

A line of severe storms swept through much of central Illinois and did damage in northwest Indiana Wednesday evening.
Hail and downed power lines and trees were reported in parts of Bourbonnais. Northwest Indiana, Crown Point and the Cedar Lake, Merrillville areas had structure damage reported.
There was a line of severe weather on radar from the Chatsworth area in Livingston County. It angled across to the western sections of Iroquois County and up to Kankakee County.

Severe weather triggered watches / warnings from the NWS....affecting Ford and Iroquois County, Livingston and Kankakee were included.

The storms initially formed west of the Illinois River and strengthened as they moved eastward. Damaging winds produced hail and did damage some outside structures.

The strong winds also knocked down power poles and trees that then knocked out power lines in clusters around Central Illinois. As of 10:00 PM Wednesday, there were 1,900 Ameren customers without power.

Strong winds were also responsible for blown over semi trucks and trailers. One was on I-57 north of Pesotum at mile marker 223, another one south of there still on I-57 at mile marker 212. Lastly, there was one along Staley road in Champaign.

94.1 WGFA