Renner named Bloomington mayor, Koos keeps post
April 10th, 2013 by Sarah Beckman
Bloomington will have a new face for mayor for the next four years.
Tari Renner was voted mayor of Bloomington, edging out John Hanson and Lex Green.
Renner celebrated with friends, family, and supporters at Rosie’s in downtown Bloomington. After results came in that Renner won, Hanson called to congratulate his opponent.
Over in Normal, results from McLean County did not come in so quickly. Citing technical difficulties, the server was down for a significant amount of time last night. Candidates for mayor, JeVaughn Martin, Victor Connor, and current mayor Chris Koos waited until 9:15 p.m. to get voting results.
After much anticipation, Chris Koos was named mayor for a third term. His city council will have a few new faces, as well as returning ones. Cheryl Gaines, Scott Preston, and Kevin McCarthy will serve on Normal City Council.
Dobski Out, Churney to Join ISU Board of Trustees
April 9th, 2013 by Chris Highland
Normal– A local business man will no longer serve on the Illinois State University Board of Trustees.
Illinois Governor Pat Quinn allowed Bob Dobski’s term on the college’s governing board to expire when the governor took no action to renew his seat within sixty days of its expiring.
Governor Quinn has appointed Bartlett resident Robert Churney to the Board of Trustees of Illinois State University. Churney, a 1987 Illinois State College of Business graduate, is an insurance broker on the board of the Assurance Agency in Schaumburg. Pending Senate confirmation, Churney’s term will run until January 2019.
Joanne Maitland’s term on the board has also expired. There is no word on who will replace Maitland.
Both Dobski and Maitland are on the committee to find a replacement for University President Al Bowman. They will continue to serve on that committee.
Voter turnout high in Bloomington, Normal municipal elections
April 9th, 2013 by Sarah Beckman
Election season has arrived yet again, but this time the hype will not center around national candidates that the public knows little about – it’s local people.
In Bloomington, Steve Stockton will step down from his post as mayor. Three candidates are vying for his position: Teri Renner, political science professor at Illinois Wesleyan University; former alderman John Hanson, and Lex Green.
All three candidates have experience leading. One of the biggest issues discussed this election season has been the downtown Bloomington bar and entertainment problems.
“If elected, I would revamp the liquor commission,” said Hanson. “I would really like to improve the communication between this liquor commission and the downtown task force.”
In Normal, mayor Chris Koos will run for a third term. On the ballot against Koos is Victor Connor and JeVaugn Martin. Additionally, city council seats are available.
“I’m excited for tonight’s results,” said Koos. “Keeping the council team in tact is important, but we’re looking for a strong group and a new addition could help us get to that point.”
Voter turnout is expected to be higher than in past years, reaching up to 35 percent of registered voters in Bloomington and Normal. But that’s nothing compared to the high turnout in November’s presidential election.
“I think it’s disappointing because local government touches the lives of people on a day-to-day basis,” said Koos. “I would like to see more people at the polls.”
Stay updated with WZND’s full coverage of both elections throughout the day.
April is National 9-1-1 Education Month
April 2nd, 2013 by Emily Pomorski
BLOOMINGTON – April is national 9-1-1 Education month, and local police departments are encouraging schools and leaders to inform to the public about the appropriate use of 9-1-1.
Bloomington Police Communications manager, Darren Wolf, said the most important message is dialing 911 when it’s an emergency.
“Kids should not be playing with phones, you know the 9-1-1 is for emergencies only and the important message is that 9-1-1 is used for emergency only,” said Wolf. “If the phone is tied up or they hang up, call, or missdial, or a child is playing on the phone, that is taking resources away from an actual emergency.”
This month-long campaign is designed to help citizens of all ages recognize the importance of 9-1-1 and their role when calling 9-1-1. Locally, the Bloomington Communications Center urges citizen to know where they are when the dial 9-1-1, as well as to remain calm and ready to listen.
Wolf also mentioned that the police department is looking into a texting component of 9-1-1.
National Public Safety Telecommunications Week is also celebrated in April.
East side Bloomington house fire contained
March 29th, 2013 by Sarah Beckman
BLOOMINGTON – Bloomington firefighters are still investigating a house fire on the east side of Bloomington.
The fire at 619 East Mulberry Street began at 6:30 a.m. and was quickly contained.
No injuries have been reported, though one resident of the house was rescued by firefighters.
The fire is believed to have been started in the basement of the home.
This story will be updated.
The cause of the east side fire is still being investigated. Photo by Sarah Beckman.
Livingston Street fire extinguished in Bloomington
March 26th, 2013 by Sarah Beckman
BLOOMINGTON – The house fire on 1205 Livingston in southwest Bloomington was extinguished earlier this afternoon.
The fire began at approximately 12:15 p.m. and was heavy at the front of the house.
Bloomington firefighters rescued one dog and cat, but could not rescue the second dog from the fire. No injuries were reported.
The cause of the fire is still under investigation.
Bloomington Police seek help in robbery incident
March 22nd, 2013 by Sarah Beckman
BLOOMINGTON - Bloomington Police are asking for the community’s help in locating suspects involved in the March 13 robbery at Red Roof Inn.
Video of the suspects was captured last Thursday morning shortly before they entered the hotel on W. Market Street and beat the lone attendant, leaving with an undisclosed amount of cash from the business. The suspects were caught on camera at the TA Travel Center Truck Stop.
If anyone has any information that might assist the Bloomington Police in determining who these suspects are, they ask that you contact:
Detective Jared Roth
Criminal Investigations Division
Bloomington Police Department
305 S. East St.
Bloomington, IL 61701
Old Main Project Relaunched
March 19th, 2013 by Sarah Beckman
NORMAL – The Old Main Project has a new look and fresh website in 2013.
What began in 2009 as a simple teaching tool to students interested in archaeology and history has now turned into an internship program and ongoing investigation of the Old Main building.
“The goal of this project is to engage the community and to show students that history is right here on campus,” said Gina Hunter, co-director of the project. “They should appreciate the rich history of this campus.”
Old Main was the first building on campus and is still home to numerous classes and programs.
The project is being relaunched with the discovery of even more artifacts surrounding the building, as well as a new face to the website. Visitors to the website can now interact with a timeline as well as read interviews with alum who remember the building.
“I don’t want this project to ever end,” said Hunter. “It’s one building, but it was a very important building and is now an archaeological site on the campus.”
The website for the Old Main project is http://oldmain.illinoisstate.edu/
White Smoke: Cardinals Elect New Pope
March 13th, 2013 by Sarah Beckman
Around 1:09 CT white smoke rose from the Sistine Chapel signifying the announcement of a new pope.
The new pope is former archbishop of Buenos Aires Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio. Bergoglio will take the name Pope Francis I.
The conclave of Cardinals only took five voted to name Beegoglio the new Pope. Beegoglio is known for his humility and charity. While in Buenos Aires, he go rid of his driver and took the bus to work everyday. He also moved out of the lavish archbishop house and moved into a small apartment. Many believe he chose the name Francis because of how he emulates St. Francis of Assisi.
Justin Bieber coming to Normal
March 11th, 2013 by Chris Highland
NORMAL– One lucky grade school is getting a special visit from a music superstar. Justin Bieber will be coming to the twin cities to meet students from Epiphany Catholic Grade School.
Five girls from the grade school led the efforts to raise money for a charity called Pencils of Promise. The charity raises money to help build schools in third world countries. For every $25 raised by the school, their name was put into a raffle. The raffle was conducted earlier this week and the founder of Pencils of Promise, Adam Braun, announced today that Epiphany School has won.
It is still undecided as to when Bieber will make his appearance in Normal.