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Peoria Public Radio News
12:55 pm
Fri March 15, 2013

The Levee District is open for business

The City of East Peoria officially has a new downtown it’s calling The Levee District. The city achieved the goal about a decade after the former Caterpillar Foundry Site was declared the place the city would build a downtown. Cullinan Properties handled the development that includes a myriad of new retailers, with restaurants, office space and a Holiday Inn and Suites coming soon. 

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Education
12:39 pm
Fri March 15, 2013

Medical students talk Match Day 2013

Fourth-year medical students across the country opened envelopes at the same time today. The envelopes contained their residency assignment.   Peoria Public Radio’s Alex Rusciano spoke with some of the nearly 50 medical students in the U of I College of Medicine at Peoria class who found out where they are going:  

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State News
7:15 am
Fri March 15, 2013

Fracking clears hurdle with tax deal

Illinois legislators say they've reached a deal on the taxes and fees companies that use hydraulic fracturing must pay the state.

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State News
7:07 am
Fri March 15, 2013

Dwight prison to shut down

In about two weeks, Illinois’ only maximum-security female correctional center will close its doors. 

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State News
6:57 am
Fri March 15, 2013

Two measures find success to overhaul state pension systems

A pair of pension measures met success in the Illinois House yesterday ... a day after a Senate panel approved two other proposals. Supporters of overhauling the state's underfunded pension systems see it as a sign it could happen this spring.  

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Crime
11:42 pm
Thu March 14, 2013

Push for new DNA testing in Savory murder case

The legal team representing Johnny Savory was back in a Peoria Courtroom Thursday. The Center on Wrongful Convictions of Youth and Northwestern Law Students are asking, among other things, to have new DNA technology applied to the blood evidence in the 36-year-old double murder cases for which Savory is convicted. Savory was 14 years-old at the time of the gruesome murders of 14-year-old James Robinson and 19-year-old Connie Cooper. He was paroled in 2006. Savory contends his conviction was unjust: 

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Government
11:37 pm
Thu March 14, 2013

Peoria County continues review of proposed septic rules

The Peoria County Board deferred a vote to approve new rules to manage independent waste-water systems. Peoria Public Radio’s Alex Rusciano reports the move comes after realtors and other groups say they weren’t involved in crafting the proposed changes: 

 The Peoria City/County Health Department is proposing changes that would require people requesting permits for repairs to prove the rest of their system is up to code.  Another proposed change would make inspectors to eventually follow guidelines when examining a home’s waste-water system prior to selling it.  But the Peoria Area Association of Realtors and some residents say they weren’t included in the process of crafting the rules.  County Board member Lynn Scott Pearson says County staff were transparent in communicating the proposed changes:
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Peoria Public Radio News
7:30 pm
Thu March 14, 2013

Short-term layoffs continue at Caterpillar

Caterpillar is expected to continue with short-term layoffs   beyond the first quarter as originally anticipated. Randy Smith is with UAW Local 974. He says the rolling layoffs are expected to continue through May, but the company has not yet said how wide reaching the layoffs might be. Caterpillar is also reportedly reducing its flexible workforce of contractual employees. Cat spokesman Jim Dugan says the company will continue with short-term layoffs as needed to keep production in line with demand.

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Economy
4:37 pm
Thu March 14, 2013

Dynergy buys five Ameren coal plants, including Bartonville Edwards

Houston-based power producer Dynegy is buying five Illinois coal power plants from Ameren.  That includes the Edwards coal plant in Bartonville.  Dynegy isn’t paying cash for the plants and the related Ameren business that provides electricity to homes and businesses. Instead Dynegy is assuming $825 million in Ameren's debt. Dynegy says buying the Ameren plants will give it more than 8,000 megawatts of generating capacity in the state and nearly 14,000 megawatts in the U.S.Area environmentalist groups are calling for the eventual closure of the Edwards plant.

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Economy
4:33 pm
Thu March 14, 2013

Area unemployment jumps significantly from December

The number of people filing unemployment claims jumped 1.7 percent from December to January.  TheIllinois Department of Employment Security reports the unemployment rate at ten percent in the Peoria Metropolitan Statistical Area.  That’s also a nearly one-percent increase from the same time last year.  Even so 800 more jobs were added from the same time last year due to gains in Educational-Health Services.  But the manufacturing and Business Service areas saw declines year-to-year.

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