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Local News

  • Parent Category: News

Streator man dies in crash with school bus

GRAND RIDGE — A Streator man died early Thursday when his pickup truck hit an Ottawa High School bus. Eight students and the bus driver received minor injuries.

46-year-old Brian Dodge was pronounced dead at the scene. LaSalle County Coroner Jody Bernard said witnesses said the eastbound truck fishtailed before striking the bus head-on. The bus was forced into a ditch.

The accident happened at 7 a.m. on Grand Ridge Blacktop, just east of Grand Ridge. High school students in that part of LaSalle County attend both Ottawa and Streator schools.

  • Parent Category: News

Vermilion Manor Nursing Home for Sale

Officials in Vermilion County have turned to a marketing firm to help sell the county-owned Vermilion Manor Nursing Home.

County Board Chairman Gary Weinard (Why’-nerd) said the firm will simply market the home, just like a real-estate agent.

County attorney Bill Donahue said the county has signed an agreement with the Chicago office of Marcus and Millichap. He said the firm gets commission only if there is a sale.

Last fall, Vermilion County voters gave county officials the authority to pursue a sale of the county-owned facility, which has struggled financially off and on for many years. The biggest hurt has been since 2011, because of slow reimbursement payments from the state for Medicaid costs.

In November 2011, the facility was owed as much as $1 million in Medicaid funding and was struggling to pay its bills.

94.1 FM, WGFA



  • Parent Category: News

Iroquois Relay seeks youth involvement

“Ten Decades of ACS: Why Not Celebrate Big.” That’s the 2013 theme for Relay for Life.

And in Iroquois County, a youth movement finds organizers encouraging young people to get involved in Relay for Life.

Sara Kestler is the Team Development Coordinator. She says nyone interested can register online at relayforlife.org/iroquoisil

Organizational meetings are held on the 1st Thursday of the month at Watseka Community High School at 7 pm.

This year’s relay at WCHS is June 14th.


94.1 FM, WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Watseka Council OK’s Watseka Ford Sales Tax Agreement

There’s a green light for the proposed move by the Watseka Ford Lincoln dealership to Watseka’s east side.

The Watseka City Council (Tues) voted to approve a sales tax agreement with the dealership and Bell Holdings. It’s an agreement that plugs a $65,000 base sales tax into the city coffers for 15 years. After that, the city receives 100% of the sales tax generated.

In between, after the first five years, Watseka receives the $65,000 base plus five-percent of any sales tax generated. And for the last five years of the original 15 year agreement, the city gets 10% in addition to the $65,000 base.

The vote was not unanimous. It was a 4-2 vote to approve. Two aldermen were absent.

94.1 FM, WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

ATV rider killed by Amtrak train

An Essex man was killed Wednesday afternoon when the all-terrain vehicle he was driving was hit by an Amtrak passenger train. It happened just southwest of Gardner.

28-year-old Brad Emanuelson was pronounced dead at the scene at 1 p.m. by Grundy County Coroner John Callahan.

The victim was one of three ATV drivers who were operating on railroad right-of-way but 12:30 p.m. They were near Old Route 66, when the train struck his ATV.

Callahan said the crash remains under investigation by his office, the Grundy County Sheriff’s Department and the railroad police.