Macomb, IL – Macomb's mayor is hoping for four more years in office. Mick Wisslead officially kicked off his reelection campaign Wednesday evening with a fundraiser that drew a large crowd. Wisslead says the biggest accomplishment during his first term was getting people to work together. He says this paid off with the NTN Bower plant expansion and with the additions of the Pella Corporation plant and the Schwan's distribution center. Wisslead says he remains enthused about Macomb and believes the city is on the move.
Fort Madison, IA – Lee County wants more answers before approving the use of a financial tool by a new industry. Fort Madison is in the process of expanding the use of tax increment financing districts, on the city's southwest side, to include the future home of Siemens Power Generation. The county must sign off on the plan because part of the land that will be included in the TIF district is outside city limits. The supervisors are not ready to do that, though, and have tabled the measure. Supervisor Larry Kruse says the board has concerns about the scope of the proposal.
Fort Madison, IA – Fort Madison is a step closer to starting work on its new water plant. City Manager Larry Dinwiddie says Fort Madison has been testing wells at a site, west of the city, to determine if there is enough quality water available to build a new water plant. He says the tests are now complete and the city should know the results within the next month. Dinwiddie, who also serves as water superintendent, says it could be 2 1/2 years before the new $13,000,000 plant is completed.
Rushville, IL – The Schuyler County Board has joined the Rushville City Council in backing a proposed housing development. Illinois Community Action has expressed interest in building a number of single-family homes on the south edge of Rushville. City water and sewer lines are near the tracts being considered. County board chairman Brian Peak says the board's support makes the project eligible for some federal tax breaks. It also allows the non-profit group to seek grant money for a marketing study on the proposal.
Washington DC – Democrats in the US House will decide on Thursday who will serve as majority leader. Western Illinois' newly elected congressman has already announced who he will support. Phil Hare says he will back Steny Hoyer of Maryland. Hare says Hoyer campaigned for him and did a great job as the minority whip. Hoyer is being opposed by John Murtha of Pennsylvania. Hare, who is already in Washington for orientation sessions, says both are capable of doing a good job.
Keokuk, IA – The price for a large piece of Main Street property in Keokuk is falling. The Keokuk school board has agreed to drop the official asking price on the old middle school property from $862,500 to $750,000. The board has also agreed to allow the district's administrators to negotiate contracts with local realtors to determine commission rates and selling strategies. Board member Tyler McGhghy cast the only vote against setting the price at $750,000.
Macomb, IL – The McDonough County Board's Safety Committee is checking the seven county buildings to look for problems that could cause an injury. Government Integrity and Oversight Committee Chairman Glen Foster says some of the suggested corrections are coming from the county's insurance carrier. Others are basic safety procedures. Foster says the group has been through all buildings and suggested items to be fixed or changed. He says now they're part-way through a second tour to insure corrections were made and to look for other problems.
Macomb, IL – Macomb aldermen want still more information before deciding whether to provide a letter of endorsement for a proposed housing development. The letter would help the Sterling Group obtain some federal tax credits for about four dozen single family homes it plans to build near East Pierce and East Streets. City council members spent a considerable amount of time questioning the developer Monday night. They still want some financial questions resolved and would like to see a sample lease for the rent-to-own homes.
Keokuk, IA – A member of the Keokuk School Board died over the weekend. Dr. Tom Wemette, 66, passed away on Sunday morning at Keokuk Area Hospital. He worked in public education for roughly 40 years. Included in that was the 25 years Wemette served as principal at Keokuk High School. He retired in 2003. Wemette was also 2 months into his first 3-year term on the Keokuk School Board. He received the most votes during the September school election. The Keokuk School District will have to name a replacement for Wemette in the very near future.