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Peoria Public Radio News
3:33 pm
Wed January 22, 2014

Washington Mayor to attend State of the Union address

The mayor of one of the hardest-hit communities during the November tornadoes is headed to the nation’s capital. U.S. Senator Mark Kirk invited Washington Mayor Gary Manier to attend next week’s State of the Union address. Manier says Kirk toured the damage shortly after the destructive storm destroyed hundreds of homes.

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Peoria Public Radio News
12:23 pm
Wed January 22, 2014

Peoria Police officers are getting some backup

The Peoria Police Department is hiring seven new officers. The new hires all have prior police service and have already completed the Illinois Police Training Institute. That means most of the seven will make it to the street for active service in June, just before the peak of Summer. 

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State News
11:35 am
Wed January 22, 2014

GOP candidates for governor say they will support whoever is nominated

Past Republican primaries for governor have been so bruising, a party leader famously described them as a "circular firing squad." But the candidates say they'll put that aside after the primary. IPR'S Amanda Vinicky reports.

At a debate at Chicago's Union League Club the Republican candidates for governor tried to set themselves apart on questions about transportation funding, Medicaid, and government consolidation. But they all had the same response to this question:

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Peoria Public Radio News
6:00 am
Wed January 22, 2014

Inside a FEMA Disaster Help Center

The entrance of the FEMA help center in East Peoria.
Tanya Koonce Peoria Public Radio

It’s been more than 60 days since tornadoes tore through the Midwest November, 17, 2014. More than 2,600 people have already registered for individual FEMA recovery assistance statewide. 

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Politics
12:00 am
Wed January 22, 2014

Frerichs formally launches campaign for state treasurer

State Senator Mike Frerichs has been campaigning for Illinois treasurer for the better part of a year. Yet, until Wednesday, he's insisted he was just "exploring" a run for statewide office. Now, the wait is over.

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Government
10:38 pm
Tue January 21, 2014

East Peoria talks early sales tax revenue numbers

East Peoria collected $108,000 more sales tax revenue last October compared to the same time in 2012. That’s according to preliminary numbers shared at last night’s City Council meeting.

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Government
10:33 pm
Tue January 21, 2014

Lawmaker proposes changes to state drunk driving law

When it comes to drunk driving, Illinois lets people back on the road after two or even three convictions. The same goes for other serious traffic offenses like reckless homicide. But the law currently says "four strikes, and you're out."

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Education
10:28 pm
Tue January 21, 2014

Study: state boosted higher ed funding by 15-percent last year

State funding for colleges and universities appears to be rebounding across the nation. Illinois State University Professor Jim Palmer says his annual survey shows state legislatures spent nearly 6% more on higher education last year. Palmer says these funding swings tend to track recessions and the economy fairly closely:

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Peoria Public Radio News
3:47 pm
Tue January 21, 2014

Congressman Schock stresses the importance of federal historic tax credits

Madison Theater
Denise Molina-Weiger

Congressman Aaron Schock says renovating the dilapidated Madison Theater is the key to revitalizing downtown Peoria. The Peoria Republican toured the facility Tuesday. He says he’s working to renew federal tax credits that could help finance the renovation of the more the 95-year-old building.

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State News
7:47 am
Tue January 21, 2014

New pension law won't solve the state's budget problem

Illinois' pension overhaul is tied up in a court challenge.  But even if it remains law, cuts to state employees' and public school teachers' retirement benefits will not solve the state's budget problem. That's the forecast from a report issued Tuesday by the University of Illinois' Institute for Government and Public Affairs. Illinois Public Radio's Amanda Vinicky spoke with the report's principle author, economist Richard Dye.  

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