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.

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.

UPDATED 7:20 a.m. | Illinois State University is sending students home until further notice because of the coronavirus.

Special Olympics Illinois has canceled its state basketball tournament this weekend in Bloomington-Normal and Peoria.

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State Police said Friday evening a wrong-way driver apparently caused a head-on fatal accident on Interstate 155 in Tazewell County. Troopers said the collision happened about 6:40 p.m. in the southbound lanes at Broadway Road between Morton and Tremont.

The Tazewell County Coroner has pronounced dead the driver of the vehicle that headed north in the southbound lanes. The driver of the other vehicle is at a Peoria hospital with life-threatening injuries, said troopers.

State police rerouted traffic away from 1-55 and onto Broadway Rd. for some hours.

Thursday's announcement that Carle health system plans to acquire Advocate BroMenn Medical Center and Advocate Eureka Hospital is big news for Central Illinois.

Livingston County State’s Attorney Randy Yedinak said Friday that the man accused of killing two family members and a neighbor Christmas morning in Cullom was drying wet hands when law enforcement arrived at the Jackson Street home.

The Chinese consul general in Chicago said talks to end the trade war are at a critical point. During a speech at Illinois State University, Zhao Jian said the world's two largest economies are interdependent.

To accommodate the piano keyboard, the Western world created 12 intervals as a mathematical compromise.

State Sen. Jason Barickman said he's not sure how a proposal to consolidate municipal fire and police pension fund assets will play out next week in Springfield. The General Assembly convenes Oct. 28-30 for its fall veto session.

While the Peoria area is showing job growth, it still lags national averages.

Illinois colleges and universities have been under pressure for years from smaller graduating classes, out-of-state competition and changing demographics. Private higher education institutions in the state face the same challenges public schools do and a couple extra.

A federal judge in Peoria has sentenced a Washington, Ill., man to more than 13 years in prison for child pornography.

SENBARICKMAN.COM

State Senator Jason Barickman concedes a new law he co-sponsored to prevent further trauma to some sexual assault victims might not be enough to assuage victims' concerns.

A former TV hunting show host from East Peoria has admitted poaching and smuggling a deer. Federal prosecutors said forty-one-year-old Christopher Brackett used to host "Fear No Evil" on the Outdoor Channel. Brackett admitted killing two bucks in Indiana in 2013 within minutes of each other when state rules said he could only take one in a season.

Illinois State Police

Memorial funds have been established to aid the family of a slain Fulton County Sheriff’s deputy. 

Bloomington Police Department

 A Peoria man is one of two people arrested in connection with a Bloomington gun death last October. 27-year old Trevonte Kirkwood of Bloomington died after someone shot him in the back October 30th on North Oak Street in Bloomington.

 

The gas tax increase in the new state budget went up 18 cents per gallon. But, there is so much deferred maintenance on Tri County roads Peoria County Engineer Amy McLaren says the tax would have to go up dollars per gallon to catch up.

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Illinois farmers have planted less than half of their corn crop this year because of frequent spring rain. Usually they are done by now.

A board member for Peoria Community Against Violence says he’s happy the General Assembly approved a measure to require fingerprints on firearm owner ID cards or FOID cards. Bobby Ford says that will help screen out people who should not be owning guns.  But, Ford also says that’s only part of the problem in gun violence.

The Mayor of Peoria says any potential revenue growth from gambling in the Peoria area would come from a land based casino in Peoria. Jim Ardis says the approval of land based casinos in other Illinois cities raises the possibility of moving the Par-A-Dice riverboat onto the land.

Peoria Mayor Jim Ardis says he’s pleased a capital bill passed the General Assembly during the spring session.

Autonomous Stuff vehicle
WCBU Staff

The streets of Peoria this summer will be a testing ground for driverless vehicles.

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