Local News

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Some Illinois community colleges see summer enrollment boost

CHICAGO (AP) — Some community colleges in the Chicago area have seen an increase in student enrollment over the summer, but officials are waiting to see if that will continue in the fall.

The Chicago Tribune reports that the College of Lake County, Harper College and the College of DuPage have all reported higher enrollment numbers.

DuPage President Brian Caputo says new student applications have increased by 4% from last year at the school, which he says could because of lower tuition prices.

Some families have decided to send their children to two-year colleges since most universities expect students to pay the same price for virtual instruction that they would for in-person classes.


26 more positives at long term care facilities in Jefferson County    

The Jefferson County Health Department is reporting 21 new positive residents and six more positive employees in long term care facilities.

While the health department is not naming the facilities, the Illinois Department of Public Health website is now identifying positive cases coming from two Mt. Vernon facilities.   They are the Mt. Vernon Health Care Center and Mt. Vernon Countryside Manor.  The state website now confirms the two deaths earlier this week were at the Mt. Vernon Health Care Center.   In addition, the health department announced 14 other residents and six other staff members of long term care facilities tested positive earlier this week.

The five other Jefferson County cases are two females and two males in their 50s and a female in her 70s.

The health department has now had 265 total positive cases.   59 remain active and are in isolation.   190 others have been released.

The health department is asking residents to stay home and away from others if they are having symptoms.   If you do get tested, you should remain at home in isolation while you wait on your test results.

If you test positive or are a close contact of a positive, you will be contacted by the Health Department and placed on isolation or quarantine. This is to help prevent the spread, so it is important to answer your phone and adhere to the isolation and quarantine by staying home and away from others.


Marion County Health Department has four more positive cases of COVID-19  

The Marion County Health Department is reporting four new positive cases of COVID-19 on Friday.   That brings the total number of cases to 155, with 28 remaining active.

All four of the new cases are isolated at home.  A female in her 50s and a female in her 70s are considered community spread.   A male in his 20s was a close contact of an out of county case and a female in her 60s was a close contact of two out of county cases.

Of the 28 active cases in Marion County, 27 are isolating at home and one is hospitalized.  Another 95 household contacts have been placed on home quarantine.  5,380 have tested negative.

The Clinton County Health Department reported 12 new positives on Thursday, bringing their total number of cases to 385.  63 remain on home isolation and two are hospitalized.  Another 303 have been released from home isolation.

Washington County is reporting three new lab-confirmed cases.   One is a female in her 30s with moderate symptoms who was exposed at her workplace, one is a female in her 20s with mild symptoms from community spread and the third is a male in his 40s with mild symptoms from community spread.  One previously reported case of COVID-19 has been admitted to the hospital with complications of COVID, but is in stable condition.

Washington County has now had 63 total cases.  Seven remain active and four are hospitalized.  The department reports they are noticing an increase in community transmission, including social gatherings where safety practices are not followed.

The Fayette County Health Department has four new positive cases, females in their 20s, 40s and 60s and a male in his 30s.  Of the 64 total cases, 17 remain active and 45 are listed as recovered.

The Wayne County Health Department is reporting two new cases, a male in his teens and a male in his 50s.   19 are currently isolating at home, two are hospitalized and 35 have recovered.


2nd federal prisoner at Marion dies this week of COVID-19

MARION, Ill. (AP) — A second inmate diagnosed with COVID-19 at the federal prison in Marion, Illinois, has died this week.

The Federal Bureau of Prisons says 39-year-old Taiwan Davis died Wednesday at a hospital where he was receiving treatment for the disease. Davis tested positive for COVID-19 on July 29.

The Bureau of Prisons says Davis had preexisting medical conditions, that the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lists as risk factors for developing more severe COVID-19 disease.

Davis had been in custody at Marion since December. He was serving a seven-year drug sentence. His death follows that on Sunday of 65-year-old Earl James.


Searcher recover body of one of two boys missing in river

BEARDSTOWN, Ill. (AP) — The body of a boy, one of two who went missing late Thursday, has been pulled by the Illinois River at Beardstown.

Authorities say searchers recovered the identified boy early Friday near a railroad bridge in the central Illinois city. The location is where the boys, aged 12 and 15, were last seen. Officials didn’t state which boy’s body was found.

Officials of the Beardstown Volunteer Fire Department say the boys apparently waded too far into the river and were caught in the river’s current.

A search continued into late Friday for the other missing boy.

Governor Pritzker 8-7-20

Businesses could face fines for customers not wearing masks 

The Illinois Department of Public Health is announcing new rules to help enforce COVID-19 safety guidelines.

Governor JB Pritzker says the rules only apply to businesses, schools, and daycare facilities and aim to boost compliance with public health mandates.

“It will give local authorities a step-by-step guide on how to enforce masks and distancing and an opportunity to help businesses act in good faith,” said Pritzker.

The first step will be a warning, followed by asking patrons to leave if a business is caught failing to comply a second time.  If there is a third violation, the business may be hit with misdemeanor charges and a fine ranging from $75 to $2,500.

“These rules are a common-sense way to enforce masks requirements without jumping immediately to the extremely tough consequences that exist on the books today,” said Pritzker.

Individuals will not face penalties, although everyone needs to comply with the mandates.  The rules will have to be approved by a legislative committee that meets next week.

As Illinois’ essential workers continue to serve on the frontlines of the fight against COVID-19, Governor Pritzker Friday signed SB 471 to expand workplace protections. To directly protect workers in retail, the law adds a penalty for assaulting or battering a retail worker who is conveying public health guidance, such as requiring patrons to wear face-coverings or promoting social distancing. Pritzker says this provision sends the message that it’s vitally important for workers to be both respected and protected while serving on the front lines.

The President and CEO of the Illinois Retail Merchants Association Rob Karr isn’t happy with the Governor’s new mask rules.  He says this proposed rule lacks common sense and is a slap in the face to the thousands of retailers who have sacrificed so much during this pandemic while actively supporting ever-changing health and safety guidelines adopted by the state.

The Illinois Department of Public Health is reporting 2,084 new cases of the coronavirus disease on Friday as well as 21 additional confirmed deaths.  The deaths in Southern Illinois include one apiece in Clark, Madison and St. Clair Counties.

The statewide preliminary positivity rate for July 31st to August 6th has bumped up another tenth of a percent to 4.1-percent.  Thirteen counties are currently reported at a warning level as a result of increases in two or more risk categories.  They are Cass, Coles, Grundy, Iroquois, Jackson, Monroe, Perry, Saline, St. Clair, Tazewell, Union, Williamson, Winnebago.

National News

Kansas mother of 3 goes missing on trip to visit family in Alabama

By MARK OSBORNE, ABC News(BIRMINGHAM, Al.) — A mother of three from Kansas has now been missing for a week after leaving on a trip to visit family in Alabama.Marilane Carter, 36, left her home in Overland Park, Kansas, just outside Kansas City, on the night of Saturday, Aug. 1, according to police. She was…read more »

Remains of 7 Marines, sailor who died in training accident recovered

MivPiv/iStockBY: ELLA TORRES, ABC NEWS (LOS ANGELES) — The remains of seven Marines and a Navy Sailor who were killed when their amphibious assault vehicle (AAV) sank during a training exercise on July 30 off of San Clemente Island in Southern California have been recovered, the Marine Corps announced Friday night.After initially saying recovery efforts…read more »

New severe weather threat in Plains, Midwest this weekend

ABC NewsBY: DANIEL MANZO, ABC NEWS (NEW YORK) — Summer storms brought another round of heavy rain, flooding and damaging winds to parts of the eastern U.S. on Friday.An 89 MPH wind gust was reported in Cumberland County, New Jersey, on Friday night, and damaging winds downed some trees in Delaware as well. Over 4…read more »

Kentucky AG explains why Breonna Taylor case decision is taking so long

Breonna Taylor FamilyBy KARMA ALLEN and SABINA GHEBREMEDHIN, ABC News(LOUISVILLE, Ky.) — Kentucky officials offered new details on Friday in the investigation into the death of Breonna Taylor, a young Black medical worker who was fatally shot in Louisville, Ky., by plainclothes police officers who had entered her home.Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron has said…read more »