Charlie Schlenker

GLT Assistant News Director Charlie Schlenker grew up in Rock Island, Illinois and graduated from Augustana College. He has spent more than three decades in radio and has won numerous state and national awards for journalism. He lives in Normal with his family.

State Farm is changing how its employees work on a permanent basis. The Bloomington-based insurer announced Friday it is introducing hybrid roles where most people will be part time in the office and part time at home.

Unlike most city and town council races Tuesday, township races were partisan. And in contests for Normal Township trustee, voters elected two Democrats and two Republicans.

Eighteen years as mayor of the Town of Normal is not the end for Chris Koos.

The parent company of Tthe Pantagraph newspaper in Bloomington is moving its shares off the New York Stock Exchange and to Nasdaq that trades shares of companies that are generally smaller in size than those on the New York exchange.

A longtime public defender in McLean County is the new head of the office. Ron Lewis has been appointed, said Chief Circuit Judge Mark Fellheimer.

The Illinois Department of Transportation has awarded $883,000 to McLean County to upgrade stretches of two roads to handle local truck traffic.

The grant money is the first installment on more than $7 million in improvements to County Highway 24 near the Tazewell County line and Meadows Road west of Chenoa in northern McLean County. In all, 19 lane miles will be improved to become designated truck routes.

Normal Town Council candidates turn the question of pandemic recovery efforts into a litmus test on the past response to the pandemic, but don't say much about what should come next.

An improving coronavirus picture in February failed to nudge unemployment lower in Bloomington- Normal in February.

Authorities have served murder warrants on two people in connection with an October killing on Bloomington's west side, and are still seeking a third.

A U.S. marshal's task force arrested Kevon Moon, 22, of Chicago, in Lafayette, Indiana, on Wednesday.

Another man, 22-year-old Malcolm Johnson of Riverdale, Illinois, already is in the McLean County jail in a different case. Bond for Johnson and Moon is $3 million each. Moon is awaiting extradition to McLean County from the jail in Tippecanoe County, Indiana.

Personal information of thousands of current and former Heartland Community College students and staff has been posted on an unsavory section of the internet, putting them at risk of identity theft.

The job of a Normal Town Council member doesn’t pay much. It comes with a lot of headaches. It takes a lot of work to listen to residents and translate that into policy. Yet nine people are running for election to three positions on April 6.

Normal Town Council member Stan Nord has accused City Manager Pam Reece and Mayor Chris Koos of discriminating against him.

Sign at a church
Staff / WCBU

A year ago, church services came to an abrupt halt. The comfortable after-service chats over coffee and pastry stopped. Hymns stopped. Sunday school stopped. It all moved online. And pastors said they have accomplished a lot to help people emotionally and socially.

Rivian continues to ramp up hiring as the start of production approaches in June. The electric vehicle maker will begin manufacturing vans, trucks, and SUVs over the summer and early autumn.

A noted and sometimes controversial jurist from central Illinois has died.

Rivian has leased the Phoenix Investors warehouse in north Normal as part of its ramp-up to production.

Fraudulent unemployment claims are skyrocketing across Illinois as scammers try to access jobless benefits using employees' Social Security numbers.

Bloomington state Sen. Bill Brady is calling again for Senate hearings on mitigation rules as coronavirus positivity rates spike statewide.

There have been multiple lockdowns in a Pekin federal prison to reduce the spread of the coronavirus in the facility, with many inmates losing contact with families during the times they are confined to their cells.

And the family of one inmate said the impact on the family and the inmate is high.

A study done by two Illinois Wesleyan University professors and a Bloomington veterinarian shows 48% of ground venison packets sampled had lead contamination.

Tim Shelley / Peoria Public Radio

In an unusually uncompetitive race for the U.S. Senate in Illinois, there is unusually harsh rhetoric coming from a major party candidate.

Gov. JB Pritzker has created new enforcement rules for mask wearing.

Pritzker said the statewide emergency order allows warnings and then fines of up to $2,500 against businesses and other organizations that do not ensure that people wear masks on the premises. He said Friday during a news conference many businesses already do this, but some do not.

A lot of statues in America have become problematic. People want to tear them down because they represent a part of history to be disavowed, or embody once heroic themes that now seem shameful.

The Peoria-based OSF Healthcare system will borrow $450 million this fall with the money financing construction of a new comprehensive cancer center in Peoria.

Bloomington Mayor Tari Renner said he was pushed to the ground and a man tried to hit him with his fist near Kohl’s about 10:30 p.m. Monday. Renner said he had tried to engage a group of people in dialogue.

UPDATED 2:50 a.m. | Looters rushed into the Target and Walmart stores in Normal early Monday, capping an evening that began with a peaceful protest but soon turned dark.

AP Photo/Charlie Riedel

Delta Airlines is suspending service to Peoria International Airport as part of a larger scaling-back of operations during the COVID-19 pandemic. Those who wish to fly the airline locally will have to drive over to Bloomington-Normal.

State officials have set up digital medical programs with several partner outlets for people with COVID-19 symptoms to keep them in their homes until advanced medical services might be needed.

U.S. Reps. Rodney Davis and Darin LaHood said Thursday federal funding to operate the regional COVID-19 testing site in Bloomington will not end on Friday as previously planned.

OSF HealthCare said Tuesday that some employees will be forced to take unpaid leave or use their paid time off as the system faces a substantial decline in revenue tied to the coronavirus pandemic.

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