Tanya Koonce

News Director

Tanya Koonce is the News Director at Peoria Public Radio.  She has a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Journalism from Eastern Illinois University, and a M.A. in Public Affairs Reporting from the University of Illinois Springfield.  Tanya started her news career in TV, managed two political campaigns after college, worked in state government and did some state association work before going back to school.  Post master’s degree, she’s worked in commercial radio and operated her own freelance agency before taking a reporter position at WCBU in 2001, and becoming news director in 2008. She’s currently serving as the Treasurer of the Illinois News Broadcaster’s Association, lives in Peoria and loves discovering interesting people, places and things.   

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Tanya Koonce / Peoria Public Radio

Those traveling from northbound Interstate 155 to westbound I-74 were rerouted into Morton Thursday afternoon and evening. Emergency responders were working to remove a charter bus that rolled over while negotiating the exit ramp at about 1:00p.m.

Tanya Koonce / Peoria Public Radio

A critical source of funding will flow into a public housing project, amidst a shortage of affordable options in Peoria.

Former Congressman Aaron Schock was in court today via video link. Four separate locations participated in the hearing with a federal courtroom linked for viewing in Peoria.

Tanya Koonce

The 25th annual MLK Day luncheon at the Peoria Civic Center drew more than 2,100 people for the meal and concert with Patti LaBelle. LaBelle was this year’s keynote speaker but rather than a traditional luncheon speech, LaBelle offered a full concert in the Civic Center Arena.  

The City of Peoria saw an increase in shootings last year but fewer homicides. Peoria Police Department Data shows a 40% increase in shootings. There were 98 shooting incidents in Peoria last year. Though some of those instances had multiple victims. 122 people were shot.

Hy-Vee’s home office in West Des Moines, Iowa is recalling about 20 different kinds of candy and cookie trays. They have the potential to to be contaminated with Salmonella.

Flickr Creative Commons/David Hilowitz

The icy road conditions have trash and recycling collection a day late in Peoria. The Peoria Public Works Department says pick-up that usually would have happened Thursday will instead be Friday and Friday’s normal pick up will happen Saturday due the icy roads. Any questions or concerns can be directed to the Peoria Disposal Company via phone or website.

Peoria Police Department

Peoria Police are asking for help in find the suspects of two bank robberies Wednesday evening. The first happened at Commerce Bank on North Knoxville about 4 o’clock, and included 2 armed men.

U.S. Department of Agriculture's Crop Production Report is out. The President of the Illinois Corn Growers Association says it’s worth farmers excitement to see the considerable increases in exports coupled with increases in feed and ethanol uses.

Flickr Creative Commons/woodleywonderworks

The Illinois State Police has issued a winter weather travel advisory for this weekend. State Police along with the Department Transportation are urging motorists that travel may be impacted by freezing rain and sleet today through Sunday.

Court Appointed Special Advocates of Peoria County are looking to increase the number of children they serve.

Caterpillar is contemplating moving machine production out of its Aurora facility. The move will be in addition to the global restructuring and cost savings plan announced in September 2015.

Flickr Creative Commons/MTAphotos

Illinois State Police District 08 is warning people to take necessary precautions before heading out on the road.  The bitter cold temperatures and the potential for snow overnight prompts the caution. Motorists are encouraged to to keep emergency items inside their vehicles and check road conditions before heading out.

Inventorchris / Flickr/Creative Commons

Preliminary autopsy results for a man found dead at Peoria County Jail Monday indicate he died of bacterial meningitis.

Paul Morse / White House/Wikimedia Commons

Congressman LaHood’s office is scrambling to secure extra tickets to the upcoming presidential inauguration.

The Peoria County Board already has a resolution for the New Year.

Tanya Koonce / Peoria Public Radio

The bells that accompany the Salvation Army’s Red Kettle campaign leave an unmistakable holiday song in the crisp winter air. 

Jason Howell / Wikimedia Commons

The River Edge Redevelopment Zone Program is being extended for a year.

The Peoria City Council is looking to fill an at-large seat, at least for a little while.

The resignation of At-Large Councilman Ryan Spain leaves a vacancy the council is looking to fill.

The mayor’s office is accepting applications from those interested in serving on the council in an at-large capacity.

Those interested in applying are asked to submit a cover letter, resume and any other supporting documentation to the mayor's assistant Brenda Hopwood.

Tunstall / Flickr/Creative Commons

Two Democratic Illinois lawmakers are calling on Gov. Bruce Rauner to sign a measure to ensure consumer choice for those with disabilities. 

Tanya Koonce

Pekin Police Detective Mike Eeten is running for Tazewell County Sheriff. Eeten, who also serves as the public information officer for the Pekin Police Department, made the announcement today. He says he’s filed his Republican candidacy and campaign committee structure with the state board of election.

Tanya Koonce / Peoria Public Radio

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

Steve Johnson / Flickr/Creative Commons

The Illinois Commerce Commission approved Illinois American Water’s request for a rate increase, but at lesser amount.

 

Illinois American asked for a $49.5 million increase last February. Instead, the ICC approved a $35.3 million increase.

The Commerce Commission ruled some expenses the company sought to recover with rate increases were too high by more than $14 million.

Illinois American Water serves customers from far Southern Illinois to the Chicago suburbs.

Pekin Police continue to search for 13-year old Robert Bee, who was reported as a runaway more than three-weeks ago.

State and Federal agencies are also participating in the search. Pekin Police Detective Mike Eeten says the combined agency effort has placed a tremendous amount of manpower to search, interviews and lead follow-ups. 

There have been no confirmed sightings of Bee since his disappearance Nov. 18, and there are no new leads.

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The 1st District Peoria City Council Seat has some competition in the April 4th. David Berry is challenging the incumbent, Councilwoman Denise Moore.  He made a formal announcement yesterday. Berry says the incumbent is doing a good job on the whole but he would like to see more:

“Now issue I am seeing overall 1st District is that when it comes to public funding it’s nearly 100-percent going to private sector projects and in some cases there are zero dollars going to job train and continuing education.”

David Quitoriano / Flickr/Creative Commons

32 year-old Tracy Long of Pekin will spend 24 months on probation, along with other sanctions, for falsifying medical reports and stealing narcotics for personal use last year at Maple Lawn Healthcare in Eureka.

 

Long, a nurse, pleaded guilty to the Class 4 Felony of Unlawful Acquisition of a Controlled Substance.

United Way agencies across the United States are receiving $11.5 million in contributions from Caterpillar employees and retirees and the company Foundation.  This amount includes a dollar-for-dollar matching grant from the Caterpillar Foundation.

ridecitylink.org

CityLink General Manager Al Stanek is retiring at the end of year. Stanek has served in the position since February 2015. His retirement announcement comes as the Regional Mass Transit Authority continues to negotiate with its bus driver’s.

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.

Tanya Koonce / Peoria Public Radio

Caterpillar is celebrating the life saving teamwork of seven people who administered CPR when their colleague collapsed. 49-year-old Mark Whiting went into cardiac arrest about a month ago while speaking at an offsite work meeting. Seven of his colleagues responded.

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