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  • Parent Category: News

Ford County Health Department faces possible temporary closure

Payroll issues could force closure of the Ford County Health Department in Paxton. The lack of available cash flow could lead to the facility closing by the end of May.

Public Health Administrator Lana Sample informed her Ford County Board this week that a lack of revenue from the state has the agency in a difficult financial position. Coming in to March, Sample said, the department had but $76,191 in cash. That won't be enough to keep the agency operating.

There's been no hiring to fill vacancies and there's been efforts to save costs, but unless state payments are on their way, services could be stopped.

Sample said the health department isn't due to get any property tax revenues until July. Unless more revenue is coming in, closing the office may be the only option.

The health board has talked about employee furloughs and borrowing from a bank or the county itself.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Gibson Area Chamber of Commerce awards

Annual awards were presented (Thursday) by the Gibson Area Chamber of Commerce.

Lifetime Achievement Award...

Ron and Melanie Warfield of Gibson City were named recipients of the 9th Lifetime Achievement Award. Recipients are recognized for community involvement over several years. The Warfields, it was pointed out, serve as volunteers at Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley schools and Gibson Area Hospital. They're also active in the chamber and local Rotary Club.

Ron Warfield is also a former president of the Illinois Farm Bureau.

Citizen of the Year Award...

"Citizen of the Year" recognizes the volunteers efforts of Miranda Leonard, activity and social services director at the Gibson Area Hospital Annex. Her nomination pointed out Leonard's involvement as a volunteer with the Meals on Wheels program and as a Sunday School teacher. She's also served the GCMS school board, the PTA, the Gibson Area Hospital Auxiliary and as a volunteer with the Little league Board and Lions Club.

More than 200 people attended the annual event at the Kruse Center in Gibson City.

Junior Citizen of the Year...

Six GCMS High School seniors were nominated for the Junior award. The honor went to James Fairfield.
Fairfield's honor recognized his leadership at home and school. He's a student athlete with aspirations for college. His plan is to attend Illinois State University and then pursue law school.

Among others getting certificates for their nomination were Emily Allen, Key-Shawn Girkin, Abby Bowen, Zach Johnson and Andrea Worthington.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Watseka Area Chamber preps for Annual Banquet

Nomination forms are available for the annual Watseka Area Chamber of Commerce awards night.

The Professional and Staff Achievement Awards will be presented in conjunction with the Times-Republic's Citizen-of-the-Year and Lifetime Achievement Awards. Deadline for nominations is April 12th.

The annual banquet is May 4th at Celebrations. It begins at 5:30 pm. Those interested in a nomination can contact the Chamber of Commerce office at 815-432-2416 or find the nomination form online at www.watsekachamber.org

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

DACC benefits from million-dollar gift

The estate of a local couple is remembering Danville Area Community College. A nearly one-million dollar gift to DACC comes from Harold and Virginia Auter.

The gift from "Boo' and 'Ginny" will be used to establish the Harold 'Boo' and Virginia 'Ginny' Auter Endowed Scholarship Fund.

The couple who were devoted to each other for fifty-five years passed away quietly, last Spring, within weeks of each other at the ages of 87 and 84, respectively.

After gifts to their family, the couple left the remainder of their estate – including their house, property and surrounding farmland – to the Danville Area Community College Foundation.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Iroquois County voter turnout tops 46%, Kankakee County 40% +

The growing popularity of early voting and voting when you register contributed to huge numbers for voter turnout in Tuesday's Illinois Primary.

The 46 percent turnout in Iroquois County came from the 8,195 ballots cast. There were 17,844 registered voters, according to records.

County Clerk Lisa Fancher said the Early Vote topped 700. Iroquois County had 487 early voters in 2012 and 367 in 2008.

Kankakee County reported running out of ballots. Steady lines of voters were reported at several precincts.
The surprises were equally apparent across Illinois as shortages of printed ballots were reported in Vermillion, Sangamon, Effingham and Adams counties and several precincts in Cook County. Voting hours were even extended in some counties so election officials could print up extra ballots and handle long lines of voters who cast their votes on touchscreens.

Sangamon County Clerk Don Gray said there has been "absolutely historic turnout" this primary as the county harboring Illinois' state capitol drew droves of voters.
The growing popularity of early voting and the ability to register voters at polling places contributed to higher turnout. For the first time, Illinois residents could register to vote and cast ballots on the same day at all polling sites. Election Day registration allows unregistered voters, or those who have moved and need to update their information, to get registered and vote all at once.

94.1 WGFA