Peoria County

Peoria Public Radio/Kristin McHugh

Newcomers prevailed in several key races in Peoria and Tazewell counties Tuesday. Here’s a rundown of the races watched by Peoria Public Radio:

The entire Peoria Public Radio listening area is under a wind chill advisory until noon Friday.

Peoria Public Radio/Kristin McHugh

A Pekin woman was injured in a Tuesday crash on Illinois Route 6.

White-tailed deer in Illinois are experiencing a disease that’s killed more 430 animals this year as of Oct 29.

Peoria Public Radio/Kristin McHugh

Peoria County is unveiling a new memorial to honor local veterans who've died in conflicts since World War II.

Kickapoo Creek Road is open again in Peoria County.

Eric Leubehusen/USDA

Drought conditions are not improving across portions of Central and Western Illinois despite recent rainfall. The U.S. Drought Monitor continues to list all of Peoria county and portions of Tazewell, Woodford, Marshall, Fulton and McLean counties as “abnormally dry” in its weekly update released Thursday.

38-year-old Mark Runyon is facing a first-degree murder charge for the death of his father Frank Runyon.

Eric Leubehusen/USDA

The U.S. Drought Monitor says portions of Central and Western Illinois remain abnormally dry. The agency’s update includes all of Peoria county and portions of Tazewell, Woodford and McLean counties for the second consecutive week.

Kristin McHugh

Reconstruction of Peoria’s Allen Road-Willow Knolls Drive intersection is expected to begin next month. City officials unveiled the preferred plan at a public meeting Wednesday night. It involves new signals, reconfiguration of medians, new sidewalks and a bike path. City engineer Bill Lewis says a roundabout was considered for the aging intersection, but a public survey overwhelmingly favored traffic signals.

Jurors in Peoria have convicted a 21-year-old woman of participating in a robbery that left a 63-year-old man dead.

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.

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.

Peoria County 2018 Spending Plan is Balanced

Sep 29, 2017
Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

Peoria County’s proposed budget for 2018 creates a surplus in revenue by the end of the year. But County Board Chairman Andrew Rand says while that may look good on paper, it’s no cause for celebration. 

Creative Commons

More than 2,100 Peoria residents were without power Wed. night, as a result of the afternoon and evening storms.

The Peoria County Board has selected the long-time chief deputy treasurer to be the next treasurer. Nicole Demetreas has worked in Peoria County government finance for nearly two decades and has served as the chief deputy treasurer since 2000. Demetreas was appointed to fill the role yesterday/Tuesday during a special Peoria County Board Meeting. She is filling the position vacated by the retirement of Tripp O’Connor January 31st. The term expires November 30th, 2018. Demetreas will be sworn in after the completion of bonding paperwork.   

Peoria County Offers Buy-Out to Balance Budget

Jan 13, 2017

Peoria County hopes to reduce the number of employees it must layoff to balance its budget. The county board Thursday night approved a voluntary employee-buyout plan.

Four Illinois community health centers are receiving a combined $4.9 million in federal grants to provide services in areas where there are barriers to affordable, quality health care.  U.S. Sens. Dick Durbin and Tammy Duckworth say the Department of Health and Human Services grants will go to centers in Cook, Lake and Peoria counties.

Tanya Koonce / Peoria Public Radio

The Peoria County Auditor is resigning her position, effective Dec. 31, citing the recent county budget cuts.

Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

The Peoria County Board has three new members. The body remains a democratic majority with a 10-8 make up of Democrats and Republicans. But this board is less gender diverse than its predecessor.

Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

The Peoria County Board is slated to approve its 2017 budget tonight. The board has to fill a two-and-a half million dollar shortfall, for this year and next.


County Board Chairman Andrew Rand says fund reserves will be depleted in three years at this pace. He says expenses are outpacing revenues about one percent a year, compounded by declines in the major revenue sources of sales taxes, fines and fees.

A Canton man told a judge he went "redneck fishing" with a pipe bomb as a tribute to his late grandfather. He hauled in a 90-day jail sentence.  Twenty-six-year-old Marc McCulley's felony conviction also got him 30 months' probation after he was sentenced last week in Peoria County Circuit Court.

Peoria County Voters Shake Up Coroner's Office

Nov 9, 2016

Voters affirmed incumbents in the 17th and 18th Congressional Districts. But Peoria County will have a new coroner.

Republican Johnna Ingersoll lost her bid for a fourth term to Jamie Harwood, 53 to 47 percent. Harwood says his background as a forensic nurse will bring changes to the coroner’s office.

“Every day, medicine changes and we work on an evidenced based best practice system everywhere in healthcare,” Harwood said. “There’s no reason the coroner’s system for investigating death shouldn’t be the exact same premise.”

Helping Black Owned Businesses in Peoria

Oct 5, 2016
Tanya Koonce / Peoria Public Radio

17th District Congresswoman Cheri Bustos visited the Minority Business Development Center in Peoria Tuesday.

Much of the space at the Black Business Alliance office at 2139 SW Adams is still under reconstruction. But it’s already working to help more minority owned businesses grow and succeed.

1st District Peoria City Council Woman Denise Moore is championing the effort to link perspective businesses owners to a variety of organizations like the Small Business Administration.

Tanya Koonce / Peoria Public Radio

Friends of Peoria County Schools launched its 'Vote Yes’ Campaign at Richwoods High School Thursday. Many of the 18 school districts within Peoria County were represented, along with State Senator Dave Koehler and the Regional Superintendent of Schools.

Andrea Tortora is managing the ‘Vote Yes’ Campaign. She says the 1/2-percent sales tax is needed in the face of underfunded state aid.

Voters to Decide on Peoria County Roads

Sep 30, 2016
Tanya Koonce / Peoria Public Radio

Peoria County voters will have two sales tax questions to consider on the November ballot. The Peoria County Schools Facility 1/2-percent sales tax question is getting another go and there’s a referendum seeking an additional 1/4-percent sales tax increase for roads.

  Peoria County kicked off a series of town hall meeting last night on its referendum requesting voters approve a 1/4-percent sales tax for roads.


Groundbreaking to Salute Fallen Soldiers

Sep 29, 2016

Those who've worked to see the final addition to the veterans war memorial at the Peoria Courthouse Plaza are celebrating the pending construction this weekend.  

The proposed memorial called “Final Salute” is dedicated to soldiers from Peoria County who’ve served in the US military from World War II to present day. The total cost is estimated to top $400,000. Most of the funds are from private and corporate donors. Peoria County is committing $125,000 to the project. 

Kimberly Thomas is the reigning Illinois Teacher of the Year. The title doesn’t come with a satin sash and a tiara, but you might think it does once you get a taste of Thomas’s extreme effervescence. This Peoria math teacher has a lot more going for her than just bubbles and fizz, but you have to get you a sip of that first.

The Peoria Public School district and Peoria County officials plan to begin educational campaigns about the proposed tax hikes after Labor Day.

Peoria County voters face three separate tax referenda this November - a binding .25 cent sales-tax hike for roads, a binding .5 cent sales-tax increase to improve school buildings and an advisory property tax referendum that would assist veterans and the disabled.

Peoria County Voters Get Two More Questions

Aug 19, 2016
Peoria Public Radio

Peoria County Voters will have two additional referenda on the November General Election Ballot. The Peoria County Board overwhelmingly approved placing the measures on the ballot last night.