Peoria Public Radio News

Local news stories and features from Peoria Public Radio.

Wikimedia Commons

Advocates for LGBTQ rights in Illinois say while 2017 brought setbacks at the federal level, the state passed three laws aimed at improving equality.

A New Voice Calls Peoria Firefighters Into Action

Dec 5, 2017
Tanya Koonce / Peoria Public Radio

The Peoria Fire Department has a new emergency alert system. It’s an automated voice that makes the initial pronouncement for EMS and fire calls. Peoria Public Radio’s Tanya Koonce reports on the voice teaming up with human 911 dispatchers:

Illinois Bicentennial Flags Fly

Dec 4, 2017
Tanya Koonce / Peoria Public Radio

  Communities across the state raised a very special flag Monday. The Illinois Bicentennial flag raising happened at municipal and county buildings and complexes over the noon hour. It also served as the kick-off of the state’s yearlong bicentennial celebration at the local level.

Protesters in Peoria Decry GOP Tax Plan

Dec 4, 2017
Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

While city officials hoisted Illinois’ bicentennial flag above Peoria City Hall Mon., shouts from protesters could be heard a few blocks away.

Illinois celebrated 199 years of statehood Sun. and kicked off the year-long celebration of the its bicentennial.

Aynur_zakirov / Creative Commons


CHICAGO (AP) - Bradley University in Peoria is a key player in an ongoing competition aimed at deploying 3-D printers to build habitats on Mars if and when humans travel to the red planet. 

Appeals Court Sends Heidelberg's Case Back to Peoria

Dec 1, 2017
Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

The half a century old murder case that convicted a black man of killing a sheriff’s deputy has been sent back to Peoria County.

Sen. Koehler Backs Kwame Raoul for Illinois AG

Nov 30, 2017

State Senator Dave Koehler says he’s supporting fellow Senator Kwame Raoul for Illinois Attorney General.

Raoul says Koehler’s endorsement is important to him because of the Peoria lawmakers leadership on issues that impact working families as well as health care.

“Those are two important points that I raise in my campaign statewide and policy points that I’ve committed myself too over the last 13-years and wish to emphasize as the state’s next attorney general.”

Transgender Navy Veteran to be Honored in East Peoria

Nov 30, 2017
Peoria Transgender Society

A transgender veteran is being honored this weekend at a scholarship luncheon in East Peoria. Leanna Bradley is the namesake of a college scholarship for LGBTQ students.

Pekin’s K9 Takes The Win

Nov 30, 2017
Tanya Koonce / Peoria Punlic Radio

The Pekin Police Department is celebrating its top dog. The 8-year-old K9 Officer Ahen won the national Aftermath award. Some 3,000 Police Departments participated in the online voting contest.

Pekin Police Chief John Dossey says he tried to keep up with the all the Facebook messages.  He says, “the one that stood out was from Miami, Florida. They said ‘look at a community of 33,000 people beating a community of 5-million. We wish were that connected.’”

Dossey says that spoke volumes to him because Pekin is a close community.     

Council Looks at Costs of Combined Sewer Overflow

Nov 29, 2017
Wikimedia Commons

The topic of addressing the city's combined sewage overflow problems returned to City Council discussions Tues. 

City management is hoping negotiations with the US Environmental Protection Agency conclude soon, so the city can resolve the CSO.

Regardless of the solution, the cost is expected to be about $200 million.

The city also has a backlog of about $50 million in other stormwater projects.

To cover the overall cost, City Manager Patrick Urich says Peoria will likely issue bonds, to be repaid from two sources.

Last Occupants Move from Riverfront Village Platform

Nov 28, 2017

The Peoria Area Chamber of Commerce and Economic Development Council are moving.

'Love Hormone' Could Block Pain

Nov 28, 2017
University of Illinois College of Medicine Peoria

Medical researchers Peoria have documented how a hormone found in mammals works to suppress inflammatory pain.


The study, led by the University of Illinois College of Medicine Peoria found the hormone oxytocin directly targets and blocks specific pain-sensing receptors. The so-called “love hormone,” is secreted naturally and is known for its bonding effect on couples.


Peoria Eyes Strategy For Future

Nov 28, 2017

The City of Peoria occasionally updates its 15-year strategic plan, which includes both policy and management guidelines.


The council has already established guidelines for several policies for projects like combined sewer overflow and road maintenance. But City Manager Patrick Urich says the council still needs to develop policy direction in several other areas.


Blue Cross/OSF HealthCare Reach Agreement

Nov 24, 2017

OSF HealthCare will continue to be in the Blue Cross and Blue Shield network next year. The medical provider and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois reached an agreement this week.


Area 3rd Quarter Index Shows Optimism

Nov 22, 2017

The Pekin-Peoria economy continued to grow slightly in the third quarter of the year. Bradley University Business Management Professor Bernard Goitein says the index of 30 area businesses shows overall growth of 0.7 percent.

He says that includes a mix of 13.9 percent fewer people being laid-off than last year at the same time, as well as a 1.1 percent drop in the number of people working.

Peoria Man Killed An East Bluff Shooting

Nov 22, 2017

32-year-old Terry Linwood Jr of Peoria was killed in the shooting in the city's East Bluff Tuesday night.

Peoria Police were called about 10:45 p.m. with reports of an armed man running down the street in the 1100 block of East Gift. Additional calls reported a man yelling in the street. Police located the shooting victim in the 1200 block of East Virginia.

Linwood was transported to a Peoria hospital from the scene critically wounded. The Peoria County Coroner says Linwood died overnight, likely from severe bleeding caused by a single gunshot in his abdomen.

Peoria Public Radio

As a lot of people take to road in Illinois to spend Thanksgiving with family and friends, the Illinois State Police is reminding motorists to drive safely.

ISP Troopers are expected to be positioned every 20 miles on Interstates 55, 57, and 80 today/Wednesday from 10 a.m. - 8 p.m. Additionally troopers will be highly visible on the interstates and heavily traveled state routes through Monday, November 27th.

Orko Manna / Peoria Public Radio

The special Peoria City Council meeting to approve the 2018-2019 budget, instead offered council members a briefing on the latest proposed cuts to the fire department.


Dunlap Superintendent Lisa Parker is leaving that post at the end of the year. The Dunlap School Board narrowly approved the separation agreement with the long-time district employee during a special meeting Tuesday night.

Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

A dessert that’s the centerpiece of many Thanksgiving tables this week depends on help from seasonal migrant workers. Many of whom travel from Texas and across the border to Morton, Ill. -- where nearly 90 percent of the world’s canned pumpkin is made.

Tanya Koonce

Faith and city leaders in Peoria are encouraging people to shop-on with a sense of safety over the busiest holiday shopping times of the year. That was the message after the melee last Saturday night at Northwoods Mall near the new amusement venue, Round 1. 

Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

With an eye on the 2018 elections, Democrats in Congress are on a “listening tour” to hear the concerns of the working class.

City Moves to Update Strategic Plan

Nov 20, 2017
Eric Fredericks / Flickr/Creative Commons

The City of Peoria occasionally updates its 15-year strategic plan, which includes both policy and management guidelines.

The council has already established guidance for several policies for projects, like combined sewer overflow and road maintenance.

But City Manager Patrick Urich says the council still needs to develop policy direction in several other areas:

Peoria Public Radio

The proposed Rivertrail Apartments project on parkland along Peoria’s riverfront has been awaiting state and federal government approval for three years.

Washington Recognizes 4 Years Post-Tornado

Nov 17, 2017
Tanya Koonce / Peoria Public Radio

 The City of Washington is remembering the anniversary of the EF-4 tornado that tore through that community late on a Sunday morning, four years ago.

Road Management Agencies Gear Up for Winter

Nov 16, 2017
Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

Rows of snowplows lined up outside the Gateway Building Thurs., as if to say “bring it on, winter!”

The Illinois ACLU Is Listening...

Nov 16, 2017

The Illinois ACLU has five times more members today than it had last year at this time just after the presidential election. That’s prompted the state civil liberties union to head out on a listening tour visiting the cities with ACLU Chapters.

Monmouth Senior from Peoria Gets Statewide Recognition

Nov 15, 2017
Monmouth College

A Richwoods High School alum, with a heart for immigrants, has been inducted into the prestigious Lincoln Academy of Illinois.

Funding for the Peoria fire department continues to be a stumbling block in developing an overall city budget for next year.