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VOLUME 146 NO. 6 • tonicanews.com

Friday, January 17, 2020

January harvest

Unfavorable weather conditions kept some combines out of the field until after New Year’s Day. A farmer harvested corn near the intersection of Route 17 and Interstate 39 near Lostant on Jan. 8. A half dozen tractors and wagons were deployed to harvest and haul away the corn crop. (Shaw Media photo/Scott Anderson) Vol. 146 No. 6 One Section 12 Pages

© The Tonica News

IVCC

Speaker selected Former trustee Melissa Olivero will give IVCC’s commencement address. / 2


The Tonica News / tonicanews.com • Friday, January 17, 2020

| LOCAL NEWS

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Where in the world is The Tonica News? Are you planning a vacation or holiday trip? Don’t forget to take along a copy of the The Tonica News. Once you get to your destination, have someone snap a photo of you holding the newspaper, and then send the photo to us along with pertinent information about who is in the photo and where you are. We’ll be happy to share your photo with other Tonica News readers, your friends, family and neighbors. Email your photo and information to news@tonicanews.com.

ILLINOIS VALLEY COMMUNITY COLLEGE

Olivero to speak at commencement Former trustee served 10 years on board OGLESBY — Former Illinois Valley Community College trustee Melissa Olivero of Peru will deliver the college’s May commencement address, President Jerry Corcoran announced at the Jan. 9 board meeting. Olivero, an administrative law judge, was elected twice and served the college from 2009 to 2019. She was board chairwoman from May 2013 through April 2017. “No one has been more loyal or shown more leadership than Melissa,” Corcoran said in July when Olivero announced she was stepping down from the board. “Sitting next to her when she was chair for four

years was one of the highlights of my life.” The 54th annual commencement will be at 1:30 p.m. Saturday, May 16, in the gymnasium. In other business, Melissa the board approved Olivero the release of closed session minutes from six 2019 meetings: Jan. 10, June 18, July 11, and Aug. 12, 15 and 22.

Board members learned: • IT help desk specialist Janna Stash has been hired as an administrative assistant in financial aid. • Jan. 9 was the first day of spring classes. • In his report, Corcoran credited

IVCC theatre department leaders Dr. David Kuester and Don Grant Zellmer for coordinating the Dec. 16 memorial service for theatre technical director Matthew Boehm. “The service was expertly handled by two of Matt’s closest friends, David and Don,” Corcoran said. • Corcoran also praised Jeannette Frahm, Valery Calvetti, Aseret Loveland, Gracelyn Quesse and Isamar Taylor for working at a last chance registration at Ottawa Center that resulted in nine enrollments. • Overall fall grade point average for IVCC student athletes was 3.05. Board members observed a moment of silence at the beginning of the meeting for Harvey Jackson Eaton of Central City, Ky. Mr. Eaton, brother of board secretary Judy Day, died Dec. 29.

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System Failure: 123 children died within a year of contact with DCFS; inspector general offers changes ‘We, Illinois, must do better,’ report states BY JOHN SAHLY Shaw Media Illinois The Illinois Department of Children and Family Services Inspector General’s annual report documents the death of 123 children who came into contact with DCFS within 12 months of their death, and begins with a concise message for the state. “We, Illinois, must do better,” Meryl Paniak, the department’s inspector general states in the report. “As I submit this report, I am disheartened that many of the problems I identify here have been identified before, both by me and my predecessor. I recently reviewed a 2004 article which addressed the same child welfare issues I highlight in this report,” Paniak writes. This annual report covers the time period from July 1, 2018, to June 30, 2019. The report, which is given to the governor and the Illinois General Assembly, highlights some of the main issues in child welfare that have lingered for years. Those issues include: Children killed after DCFS left them with abusive parents or their partners, children taken from their parents to sleep on the floors in DCFS offic-

es, children kept beyond medical necessity in psychiatric hospitals (even earlier, in 1996, a neglect petition was filed against DCFS for leaving children in psych hospitals when they were ready for discharge), lack of foster homes and services for children and families whose first language is not English, and investigators who take shortcuts that lead to tragedy. Specifically, the report cites the April 2019 death of 5-year-old AJ Freund of Crystal Lake. Freund’s mother, JoAnn Cunningham, pleaded guilty to Freund’s murder. AJ’s father, Andrew Freund, remains in jail awaiting trial. DCFS has faced heavy criticism for its handling of the Freund case, including a December 2018 contact when AJ Freund had a large bruise on his hip and later told a doctor

it might have been his mother who hit him. “The death of AJ Freund, like the death of Joseph Wallace which led to the creation of the OIG, is emblematic of DCFS’s failure to look beyond the current crisis to consider the entire history of the family,” the report states, referencing the 1993 death of 3-year-old Joseph Wallace, who was killed by his mentally ill mother who had repeatedly regained custody despite warning signs that she would hurt her son. “In Wallace, investigators ignored the mother’s long history of physical abuse and profound mental illness. In Freund, investigators ignored the parents’ long history of addiction, the mother’s recent relapse, and the parents’ isolation of the children from caring relatives and day care providers.” Of the 123 deaths reviewed by the inspector general, 37 were deemed accidental, 34 were “natural,” 24 were ruled a homicide, seven were suicide and the cause of death in 21 was undetermined. In the report’s systemic recommendations, the inspector general wrote DCFS should review its practice of requesting law enforcement to take protective custody of children victims of alleged abuse for interviewing purposes.


TONICA VOLUNTEER FIRE DEPARTMENT

Demonstrator model available for $267,000

• Friday, January 17, 2020

TONICA — The new year will bring a new ambulance to the Tonica Volunteer Fire Department. At the department’s January meeting, Chief Al Stremlau and Ambulance Administrator Sue Huss presented information pertaining to replacing the current 20-year-old ambulance. Research had previously been done on this topic and presented to the board of directors. Upon their recommendation, the membership voted to purchase a demonstrator ambulance that is available for about $267,000. The current ambulance will be sold. Anyone interested in purchasing the current ambulance can contact the Tonica Volunteer Fire Department at 815-442-3527. In other news, Stremlau reported that there were 18 emergency calls during December. These calls consisted of one auto-aid to Oglesby for a structure fire, one accident, 12 ambulance requests, one power line pole down, one false alarm and two hazardous conditions. There were 168 emergency calls during 2019. The detailed annual report of calls was presented to the membership. Stremlau reported that seven department members supported the “Pink Heals” organization with a visit to the Miller residence, supporting Nancy during her battle with cancer. A previous application for mem-

Tonica News file photo

A file photo from 2015 shows the Tonica Volunteer Fire Department ambulance, which was purchased in 1999 for $87,000. The department has voted to buy a new ambulance to replace the 20-year-old vehicle. bership that had been received from Benjamin Dodge was voted on and he was accepted as a probationary firefighter. Rob Hoover and Gage Hoover completed their probationary year. Rob was accepted as a firefighter and Gage was accepted as a cadet. Stremlau announced that the officers for 2020 as Chief Al Stremlau, Assistant Chief Bill Gray, Captain Todd Anderson, Lieutenants James Breit and Dan Francisco, Ambu-

lance Administrator Sue Huss and Deputy Chief Training Rick Turri. It was noted that a new folding utility ladder has been added to Rescue 1715. A remotely operated spot light on Rescue 1715 has been repaired under warranty. The fire station’s backup electric power generator has been repaired. Lt. James Breit reported that the building add-on has been completed. It was noted that there were many volunteer hours put in by the

department members and citizens of the community. Department member photo ID cards are being update by Tina Gray. The recent death of a volunteer firefighter at a structure fire in Missouri was reviewed. It was noted that the department’s drug and alcohol zero tolerance policy is still in effect. The annual training summary and training participation reports were presented to the members.

New members added, storage building built, new rescue truck bought The following are highlights for the Tonica Volunteer Fire Department for 2019: • These new members were added to the department: Morgan Brandner (EMT), Cody Anderson (Cadet), Gage Hoover (Cadet), Rob Hoover and Wendy Bernabei as firefighters. • With regret, the following resignations were accepted: James Ott served as a firefighter-EMT and held positions of first lieutenant, second lieutenant, captain, assistant chief, chief, board of directors member; Terry McCleary served as firefighter and board of directors member; Woody

LOCAL NEWS | The Tonica News / tonicanews.com

Fire department votes to buy new ambulance

3

Olson served as an EMT. • With the support on the citizens of Tonica and surrounding communities, the dedication of department members, and the help of many citizens who volunteer their time and resources, the department was able to accomplish the following major items without money from property taxes. • A storage building next to the fire station was completed. This addition will free up much-needed space inside the fire station. • A new rescue truck was purchased and placed in service, replacing a truck that was more than 30 years old.

• The ISO Rating for the village of Tonica improved from a class 6 to a class 5. This was accomplished through the combined efforts of the fire department, Tonica Village Water Department and county emergency dispatch agencies. This improvement in insurance class may have a positive effect on fire insurance premiums for residential and commercial structures. • Reflective hydrant markers were purchased and installed by the department. This will aid with the location and selection of hydrants with a better water flow for fighting fires.

• Department members donated money to the Ronald McDonald House Charities First Responders Hero Room. The TVFD Department patch is now on display there. • New fire hose was purchased to replace 550 feet of damaged or aged hose. • New SOGs were implemented for Truck Inspection and Maintenance, Pump Operations, Pumper-Tender Operations and Sexual Harassment Policy. • Firefighter-EMT Stephen Ebener completed the State Fire Fighter Operations level training class and received his state firefighter certification.


ILLINOIS VALLEY

Celebration of life set for Sunday for ex-senator SHAW MEDIA Public arrangements have been made for former state Sen. Patrick Welch, D-Peru, who died Jan. 7 at the age of 71. A celebration of life will be from 2 to 5 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 19, at Starved Rock Lodge. Illinois Senate President John J. Cullerton issued the following statement regarding the passing of Welch. “It’s with a heavy heart that I express my deepest condolences to the family and friends of my former colleague Pat Welch. He was a man with the savvy and the determination to be a true, principled public servant to the people he represented. “Pat was a fighter for his ideals. He left behind a legislative legacy of equal pay for equal work, environmental protection and investment in local infrastructure. The

Pat Welch I had the honor of serving with is the sort of person we speak of when we talk about statesmanship. He will be dearly missed.” Welch, who reprePatrick sented most of LaSalle Welch and Bureau counties for 22 years, died from complications of a stroke. “Pat lived his life exactly as he wanted to,” friend Jan Czarnik posted on Welch’s Facebook page. “He accomplished a great deal, did so much good, and unquestionably leaves this world a better place than he found it.” Chicago-born Welch earned a law degree from the Illinois Institute of Technology/Kent College of Law but used his legal skills primarily in the statehouse, where he represented the 38th Senate District from 1982-2004. He first unseated Republican Betty Hoxsey in what was intended to be a GOP-friendly district and was re-elected six times. “Pat Welch was one of the best rep-

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Kennedy’s subsequent assassination didn’t cool his ardor for politics. Within months of earning his law degree he was named Democratic State Central Committeeman in 1978. Welch, not yet 30, was the youngest to hold that office at that time. He was 33 years old when he trudged through snow to campaign against Hoxsey in 1982, attributing his upset win to the “sympathy vote” he got from homeowners who marveled at him stumping in the bitter cold. Welch’s Senate colleagues derided him as a “one-term wonder,” but he proved them wrong. Former LaSalle County coroner Jody Ber nard remembered Welch as intelligent, knowledgeable and sharp with a “phenomenal” grasp of state government. “Personally, I was always so appreciative of how he welcomed newcomers such as myself in 1996,” Bernard said. “He was always encouraging and positive, wanting to know how things were going and how I was doing.”

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resentatives this area has ever had,” recalled Rocky Raikes, former Democratic Party chairman for LaSalle County. “He brought in jobs, helped pay to build schools, you name it. It didn’t matter if it was a firehouse, a sewage treatment plant or food for the hungry, he was always there doing a great job for the people of this district.” The youngest of six children, Welch moved to Champaign as a boy after his father Bill had been laid off. Back in the 1960s, the university town wasn’t a great place to be a Chicago Catholic; Welch remembers being derided as a “mackerel snapper” and “spaghetti eater.” The Welch family was not especially political; but he was bitten by the political bug at age 19 when his older brother Bob persuaded him to stump for Robert F. Kennedy in 1968. After the anti-Catholic taunts, Welch latched on to RFK’s civil rights agenda and thoroughly enjoyed life on the campaign trail. “That did it for me,” Welch recalled in a 2002 interview. “After that I was committed to going into politics.”

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The Tonica News / tonicanews.com • Friday, January 17, 2020

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OGLESBY — The University of Illinois Extension Master Gardener and Master Naturalist Programs, along with Illinois Valley Community College, will host an all-day spring seminar on Saturday, Feb. 22, at the IVCC Peter Miller Community Technology Center. This seminar, which is open to the public, will focus on a variety of horticultural and natural resources topics. The seminar begins at 8:30 a.m. with a keynote address by Candice Hart, State Master Gardener Specialist with the University of Illinois Extension, and will be followed by four educational sessions. Sixteen classes will be offered that day. Attendees will be able to choose one of four available classes per session. The seminar will conclude at 3:30 p.m. A registration fee of $40 includes the keynote address, four educational sessions, a continental breakfast, and lunch. Numerous vendors and exhibitors will be present for the duration of the day. Attendees will also have the chance to win a variety of door prizes. Advanced registration is required by Saturday, Feb. 15. For additional information and to register, visit https://go.illinois.edu/ growingtogether2020. You may also call 815-433-0707 or email at bkrug@illinois.edu. Space is limited.

Lostant Grade School

Tonica Grade School

Breakfast Jan. 20 — French toast sticks, yogurt/granola, cheese stick, fruit, cereal, juice/milk. Jan. 21 — Create-you-own sandwich (egg, sausage, cheese), yogurt/granola, cheese stick, fruit, cereal, juice/milk. Jan. 22 — Honey bun, yogurt/granola, cheese stick, fruit, cereal, juice/milk. Jan. 23 — Fruit yogurt parfait, yogurt/granola, cheese stick, fruit, cereal, juice/milk. Jan. 24 — Poptart Friday, yogurt/ granola, cheese stick, fruit, cereal, juice/milk.

Breakfast Jan. 20 — Biscuit and sausage gravy or cereal, toast, granola, yogurt, fruit, juice, milk. Jan. 21 — French toast sticks and syrup or cereal, toast, granola, yogurt, fruit, juice, milk. Jan. 22 — Cheese omelet or cereal, hash browns, toast, granola, yogurt, fruit, juice, milk. Jan. 23 — Bacon, egg and cheese croissant or cereal, toast, granola, yogurt, fruit, juice, milk. Jan. 24 — Cinnamon roll or cereal, toast, granola, yogurt, fruit, juice, milk.

Lunch Jan. 20 — Shrimp, au gratin potatoes, Roman salad, fruit, milk. Jan. 21 — Nacho bar (chips, meat, cheese, tomato, peppers, salsa), Spanish rice, fruit, milk. Jan. 22 — Grilled chicken salad (lettuce, chicken, cheese, tomato), bread stick, fruit, milk. Jan. 23 — Meatball sub, mozzarella cheese, cottage cheese, celery with peanut butter, fruit, milk. Jan. 24 — Cheesy bosco sticks, marinara sauce, cucumbers, fruit, milk.

Lunch Jan. 20 — Chicken strips and dipping sauce, mashed potatoes, side kick, fruit, milk. Jan. 21 — Noodles, meatballs and gravy, green beans, fruit, dinner roll, milk. Jan. 22 — Tacos (corn hard shell, taco meat, cheese cup, refried beans, lettuce), fruit, Rice Krispies treat, milk. Jan. 23 — Boneless Asian-style chicken bites, french fries, steamed broccoli, cheese sauce, apple slices and caramel, milk. Jan. 24 — Pizza bosco stick, lettuce and salad dressing, fruit, cookie, milk.

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Putnam County Community Center Jan. 20 — Ham salad on wheat bread, tortellini with broth, carrot and celery sticks, pineapple. Jan. 21 — Baked ham, scalloped potatoes, mixed vegetables, roll, mixed berries, dessert. Jan. 22 — Sliced turkey and bacon on bread with lettuce and tomato, baked beans, chips, bananas and strawberries. Jan. 23 — Ground beef with penne pasta with sauce, lettuce with tomato and cucumber, garlic bread, plums, dessert. Jan. 24 — Chicken fried steak with gravy, red potatoes, mixed vegetables, grapes, roll. Bread, butter, fruit juice and 2% milk are available with meals. For reservations, call 800-757-4579, 24 hours in advance of the day’s meal. The menu is subject to change. Meals are available to senior citizens 60 plus at no cost, but donations are appreciated. The meal program is partly funded by donations, so they have a suggested donation of $5 per meal. Lunch is served at 11:30 a.m.

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FINANCIAL STRATEGIES

Ways to avoid financial peril after a job loss METRO NEWS SERVICE

Losing a job can be devastating. Even in a strong market, companies can go out of business or reduce payroll. Being let go can initially tug at one’s pride, and after a layoff sets in, it may cause individuals to start worrying for their financial futures. While many people can survive and may even enjoy a few weeks of rest and relaxation after a job loss, financial concerns may surface soon thereafter. A 2017 GOBankingRates survey found that more than half of American adults have less than $1,000 in their savings accounts. Financial planners typically advise people to have at least three month’s worth of earnings socked away for emergency situations, like a medical issue or a job loss. Even though the survey also found more than a quarter (27 percent) of respondents have $10,000 or more saved, that might not be enough to survive a job loss for six months or more. These strategies can help professionals who recently found themselves out of work avoid financial difficulties. • Get references. Leave on amicable terms and ask your former

employer for a reference. You should not burn any bridges, as a good reference can be invaluable as you look for your next opportunity.

• Live off of cash reserves first.

Before cashing in investments or retirement accounts, tap your emergency fund first. If you have any tangible assets, like an unused car or a boat sitting idle, sell these items for cash to tide you over.

• Contact your credit card company. Many companies have pro-

grams designed to help customers facing financial hardships. Reach out promptly to let them know you may be anticipating missed payments. It is better if you initiate contact rather than going into default. The same tactic can be used for mortgage or rent payments.

• Assess your budget carefully. You naturally will have to make

concessions that impact finances, particularly as it pertains to spending. Cut back on non-necessities like dining out, gym memberships, streaming subscriptions, and other luxuries. Avoid adding other new debt. • Apply for aid benefits. There may be government benefits, such as low-cost health care or food subsidies, that can help you get through financial difficulties until you get

Metro News Service

A job loss can come as a shock. However, with level-headedness and smart planning, many people can avoid dire financial situations in the wake of a layoff. back on your feet.

• Involve the entire family. It can

be embarrassing to lose a job, but look to family for support. Children may not need to know every detail, but they can have a cursory awareness of family finances and understand they may have to cut back until Mom or Dad is working again.

• Prioritize saving. Lightning may not strike twice, but plan ahead for another job loss by prioritizing savings in the future. A job loss can come as a shock. However, with level-headedness and smart planning, many people can avoid dire financial situations in the wake of a layoff.

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CREATING A FAMILY BUDGET

METRO NEWS SERVICE

• Can I afford big-ticket baby items related to safety and comfort? Items may include a new vehicle with high crash-test ratings, or renovations to a home to provide

Couples who want to start a family can make the transition go smoothly by figuring out their finances before welcoming a baby into the family.

Metro News Service

a safe nursery. If renovations are unlikely, then would-be parents may need to consider the costs of moving.

• Have I considered daily child expenses? Diapers, formula, laun-

dry detergent, clothing for each stage of growth, and various other items are necessary when raising a child. Make a list of such items and their potential costs.

• Do I have adequate health insurance? Pew Research states

that expenses for a delivery can range from $3,000 to upward of $37,000 per child for a normal vaginal delivery, and from $8,000 to $70,000 if a C-section or special care is needed. Consider how much your health insurance will cover and how much adding a child to a policy will increase your rates. • Will I need daycare? In order to afford added expenses, both parents may have to work. BabyCenter. com states that a family’s average

childcare costs are roughly $755 per month.

• Can I afford life insurance?

Once you begin a family, it is important for both parents to have a life insurance policy in place to provide for surviving family members in the event of an untimely death. Couples who want to start a family can make the transition go smoothly by figuring out their finances before welcoming a baby into the family.

WEATHERING FINANCIAL STORMS

Unexpected home repairs can sink household budgets METRO NEWS SERVICE A home is the most substantial investment many people will ever make. Once down payments have been made and closing costs have been paid, homeowners may still be staring down sizable expenses as they begin to tackle any repairs that need to be made. Home maintenance and renovations involve a certain measure of trepidation. Even after vetting contractors and establishing budgets, homeowners may worry that repairs will unearth problems that snowball into expensive fixes. Planning ahead for such projects and learning to recognize issues that tend to be costly can help home-

owners weather any storms that may arise. • Foundation issues: A strong foundation is key to any home. If there is a problem with the foundation, it can be unsafe to live in the house. The foundation repair company Foundation Experts advises that foundation fixes can range from $4,000 to upward of $100,000 depending on the scale of the job. Clogged gutters and water pooling around the foundation can contribute to damage, so water issues must be remedied first. • Roof damage: A roof is a key barrier between the indoors and outdoors. Roofs must remain in tiptop shape. The home improvement resource HomeAdvisor says that

a roof repair or replacement can cost between $3,000 and $12,000. But homeowners also must budget for the cost of removing the old roofing materials and fixing any damage to the interior of the home. Inspecting the roof and making repairs as you go is key to avoiding a big headache. • Siding replacement: Another costly project can be replacing the siding. Siding may need to be replaced if there is water/wind damage or penetration from insects. Spot repairs may be relatively inexpensive. However, the home improvement resource Modernize says the average siding installation project can cost between $5,500 and $15,000, depending on the materials homeowners choose.

• HVAC update: Keeping a home at a comfortable temperature is also a matter of safety. If a system gives out, homeowners may be scrambling for a solution. Yearly inspections and upkeep, which includes changing system filters regularly, can help identify potential problems. Neglect is one of the main contributors to the failure of heating and cooling equipment. Based on national averages, a whole-house HVAC system can cost between $4,000 and $12,000. These are some of the more costly repairs homeowners can expect. Keeping on top of the home will help mitigate damage and could extend the life of major home components.

• Friday, January 17, 2020

Financial changes are a fact of life. Changes occur at every turn, including when students leave home for the first time, people get married and when families purchase their first home. One of the biggest financial changes occurs when starting a family. Starting a family can come with a measure of sticker shock, particularly for young couples without much financial history. Since the 1960s, the costs associated with raising a family have risen exponentially, says the financial resource MarketWatch. Between 2000 and 2010, costs rose by 40 percent. Data from Money.com indicates that, as of 2015, American parents spent, on average, more than $230,000 on child costs from birth until the age of 17. The U.S. Department of Agriculture says that today that number is closer to $245,000 per child, which does not include the cost of college. BabyCenter.com offers a cost comparison tool to help prospective parents get started on creating family budgets. When mulling the cost of starting a family, prospective parents can ask themselves the following questions to get a handle on their finances.

FINANCE MATTERS | The Tonica News / tonicanews.com

How finances change when starting a family

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The Tonica News / tonicanews.com • Friday, January 17, 2020

| FINANCE MATTERS

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CONSUMER BORROWING

How credit scores can affect your finances METRO NEWS SERVICE Monthly budgets help people make the most of their money. While a person’s income will affect how much they can spend on housing, food and clothing each month, another, more abstract factor can have a big impact on monthly budgets as well. Nearly every adult has a credit score, which can fluctuate daily. Various factors, including a person’s age and track record in regard to paying bills, combine to produce a credit score. According to the credit reporting agency Experian, credit scores range from 300 to 850, though most consumers’ scores fall somewhere between 600 and 750. The Fair Isaac Corporation create what’s known as a FICO Score, which is used by many lenders to determine prospective borrowers’ credit worthiness. FICO scores are often characterized using five terms: • Very poor: Scores between 300 and 579. • Fair: Scores between 580 and 669. • Good: Scores between 670 and 739.

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Consumers can benefit from knowing their credit scores and how to improve them. Taking measures to improve low or subpar credit scores can put more money in consumers’ pockets, both in the immediate and distant future. • Very good: Scores between 740

and 799.

• Exceptional: Score between 800 and 850. Some consumers may feel that these are just numbers on a page. But in certain instances, such as when consumers attempt to buy a

home, a credit score can have a dramatic effect on a person’s monthly budget. When borrowing to buy a home, borrowers with desirable credit scores may be eligible for considerably lower interest rates than borrowers whose scores fall into the

“Very poor” or “Fair” range. Over the length of a standard, 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage, a low interest rate can save borrowers tens of thousands of dollars in interest fees. In addition to paying more in interest fees, Experian notes that borrowers with subpar credit scores may have to do even more to earn the trust of lenders. Borrowers whose scores fall into the “Very poor” range may be required to pay a fee or make a deposit when opening a new credit account, and some might not be approved for credit at all. Borrowers whose scores fall into the “Fair” category may be classified by lenders as subprime borrowers, making it hard for them to open new credit accounts or secure loans without a co-signer. Consumers can benefit from knowing their credit scores and how to improve them. Taking measures to improve low or subpar credit scores can put more money in consumers’ pockets, both in the immediate and distant future.

SAVING FOR RETIREMENT

IRAs come in various types METRO NEWS SERVICE Discussions about retirement planning typically include mention of individual retirement accounts, or IRAs. IRAs are retirement investment vehicles that can be used in place of or in conjunction with 401(k) plans. Many investors like IRAs because they give them a certain measure of choice in regard to their investments while allowing investors to postpone paying taxes on gains until money is withdrawn during retirement. • Traditional IRA: Traditional IRAs are very popular, according to data from the Investment Company Institute. Classic features include a tax break of up to $6,000 initially, and investment earnings are not taxed as long as the money remains in the account. • Roth IRA: A Roth IRA is different than a traditional IRA in various ways. Contributions to a Roth IRA are not tax-deductible, but funds will grow tax-free. Also, with a Roth IRA, the taxes are paid upfront, so account holders will not pay taxes when the money is withdrawn. This is benefi-

cial for those who expect their income tax bracket to rise after retirement. • SEP IRA: This type of IRA is a traditional IRA, but one set up and funded for employees by an employer. SEP stands for simplified employee pension. Employers must contribute equally to all employee accounts, and personal contribution limits are much higher for these accounts than on other tax-favored accounts. • Spousal IRA: The financial resource The Motley Fool notes that spousal IRAs are either traditional or Roth IRAs funded by a married taxpayer in the name of his or her spouse who has less than $2,000 in annual compensation. The couple must file a joint tax return in the year of the contribution. • Education IRA (EIRA): Not all IRAs are strictly for retirement funds. EIRAs help pay for higher education. No tax deductions are allowed, but deposits and earnings may be withdrawn tax-free so long as they are used to pay for higher education. IRAs are tax-advantaged tools for setting aside funds for retirement and other needs.

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NAVIGATING TRICKY FINANCIAL WATERS

METRO NEWS SERVICE

Juggling one’s own finances and the responsibilities of another person’s money can take its toll. There are several ways to navigate these often tricky waters.

• Make legal fiduciary changes.

AARP suggests drawing up legal documents to manage all financial accounts. A power of attorney is a legal document in which one person assigns another the power to make financial decisions on their behalf. This also protects family interests, so that another relative like a sibling, who may want his or her share of a loved one’s money, will not have access. Documenting fiduciary changes in the letter of the law can serve as a measure of protection against potential problems. • Put your priorities first. You may end up running yourself emotionally and financially ragged catering to a loved one’s needs.

Metro News Service According to a 2015 study from the National Alliance for Caregiving, an estimated 43.4 million American adults provide unpaid care to an adult or child. Taking repeated time off of work or paying for loved ones’ needs out of your own pocket can take its financial toll. Do not take on unmanageable debt. • Ask for help. Speak with a finan-

How do you plan your financial future?

We will help you with a personal and local approach based on your needs.

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cial adviser and/or elder care attorney about the best ways to manage a loved one’s money to ensure an aging parent or child will be provided for. Arranging assets in certain ways can make individuals eligible for certain benefits. Managing money is just one of the many tasks associated with being a caregiver.

• Friday, January 17, 2020

The number of retirees is on the rise. Data from the U.S. Census Bureau points out that, by 2030, there will be 81.2 million Americans over age 65, and many of them will need help taking care of themselves. Caregiving is a big responsibility. One crucial role caregivers may take on involves managing a loved one’s finances. AARP states that acting as a money manager becomes especially important if a loved one begins having trouble keeping a checkbook or becomes confused about money. The Family Caregiver Alliance indicates millions of Americans are managing money or property for a family member or friend who is unable to pay bills or make financial decisions. Juggling one’s own finances and the responsibilities of another person’s money can take its toll. Here are several ways to navigate these often tricky waters. • Discuss plans in advance. Have conversations even before an aging loved one needs caregiving. Talking

through difficult topics when parents are healthy can simplify decisions later on. • Open a joint account. Joint back accounts make it easier for caregivers to manage loved ones’ money if the person becomes physically or mentally incapacitated. When necessary, you can step in as a money manager to pay bills, make deposits and withdrawals and monitor account balances.

FINANCE MATTERS | The Tonica News / tonicanews.com

Caregivers: How to manage a loved one’s money

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IN THE THIRTEENTH JUDICIAL CIRCUIT OF ILLINOIS IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF LASALLE COUNTY Estate of CATHERINE L. BRENNAN, Deceased. No. 2019-P-257 NOTICE TO CLAIMANTS NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN of the death of CATHERINE L. BRENNAN, deceased. Letters of office as Independent Administrator were issued on December 30, 2019 to CARRIE L. ROGERS whose address is 204 W. Livingston Road, Streator, Illinois 61364 and whose attorney is M.G. GULO & ASSOCIATES, LTD., 123 S. Monroe Street, Streator, Illinois 61364. The estate will be administered without Court supervision, unless under Section 5/28-4 of the Probate Act (Ill. Compiled Stat. 1992, Ch. 755, Par. 5/28-4) any interested person terminates independent administration at any time by mailing or delivering a petition to terminate to the Clerk. Claims against the estate may be filed in the office of the Clerk of the Circuit Court, 119 W. Madison Street, Ottawa, Illinois 61350, on or before July 24, 2020, or if mailing or delivery of notice from the representative is required by Section 5/18-3 of the Probate Act of 1975, the date stated in that notice. Any claim not filed within that period is barred. Copies of any claim filed with the Clerk must be mailed or delivered to the estate representative and to the attorney within 10 days after it has been filed with the Clerk. Dated this 17th day of January, 2020. Greg Vaccaro, Clerk of the Circuit Court 13th Judicial Circuit, LaSalle County, Illinois

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The Tonica News / tonicanews.com • Friday, January 17, 2020

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LASALLE

Cast announced for Stage 212’s ‘Nunsensations! The Nunsense Vegas Revue’ Tickets for the general public will be available starting Jan. 27 LASALLE — Stage 212’s winter 2020 production takes the sisters on a brand new adventure in Dan Goggin’s “Nunsensations! The Nunsense Vegas Revue.” When a parishioner volunteers to donate $10,000 to the sisters’ school if they will perform in a club in Las Vegas, Mother Superior is hesitant to accept. However, after being convinced by the other sisters that “what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas,” Reverend Mother agrees. What follows is the most feather-filled, sequin-studded, fan dancing Nunsense show

ever. Performing in “The Pump Room” at the Mystique Motor Lodge, the sisters experience “show-biz” like never before. Featured in the cast are Jane Knapp as Sister Mary Regina, Mary Ann Thompson as Sister Mary Hubert, Lori Christopherson as Sister Robert Anne, Jessica Kreiser as Sister Mary Paul and Debbi Torri as Sister Mary Leo. Appearing in the ensemble are Karen Lesman, Ella Johns, Zoe Piano, Amilia Sanchez and Tracy Daugherty. “Nunsensations! The Nunsense Vegas Revue” will be presented Feb. 7, 8, 9, 13, 14, 15 (two performances) and 16 at Stage 212, 700 First St. in LaSalle. Thursday, Friday and Sat-

urday evening performances begin at 7:30 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday matinees begin at 2 p.m. 2020 season passes are still available. Patrons purchasing a season pass will be able to line up their tickets beginning Jan. 20. Otherwise, tickets will be available to the general public for $20 each beginning Jan. 27, and may be purchased by visiting the box office Monday from 4 to 6 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon, or by calling 815-224-3025 during the same hours. Tickets may also be purchased online by visiting www.stage212.org. “Nunsensations! The Nunsense Vegas Revue” is presented by arrangement with TAMS-WITMARK, www.tamswitmark.com.

The Timber Ridge Golf Club of Lacon, IL (formerly Lacon Country Club) is excited to announce that we are currently offering memberships for the 2020 calendar year. Not only will we be offering a top notch golf course but we will be hosting many different types of events at the new Timber Ridge Golf Club. In addition, we will be holding a grand opening for a sports bar/steakhouse in March that will be open to all of our members and the public.

Check out some of the events/perks Timber Ridge plans to offer their members for 2020. • Special Themed Parties • Golf Scrambles/Couple Nine and Dines (with babysitting offered if needed) • Golf Lessons with Pros • Dinner Theaters • Dinner/Dance Events • Wine Tasting Events • 5K/1 Mile Event • Live Entertainment on the Patio • Bingo Events/Trivia nights • Special Events for Ladies • Cruise Ins • Craft Beer Tastings/Burger and Beer Events • Special Events on Mother’s/Father’s Day • Special Events for Students • Jr Leagues in the Summer for Students • Rental of Rooms, Facility, etc for Members • 10% Discount on Food Purchases in the Sports Bar/Steakhouse Please look over our membership application and consider becoming a member at the new Timber Ridge Golf Club. There are several types of memberships available and we are sure that you’ll find one that fits your lifestyle. Please take notice of our corporate membership program for businesses also. If you would like to download an application, you can go to our Facebook page “Timber Ridge Golf Club” and access an application there.

TIMBER RIDGE COMMUNITY GOLF CLUB-LET US BE YOUR CLUB IN 2020! Timber Ridge Golf Club Membership Application I hereby apply for membership within the Timber Ridge Golf Club. I agree to abide by all the by-laws, policies and regulations of Timber Ridge Golf Club and its management and to forfeit the balance of dues if the membership is resigned or terminated. Date

2020 GOLF MEMBERSHIPS

MEMBERS INFORMATION

ALL GOLF MEMBERSHIPS INCLUDE • Cart Fees • Green Fees • 10% off food and beverage in the sportsbar/steakhouse *Alcohol not included

Name (print)

Address

Corporate Partnership $2500 *Includes sponsorship name on scorecard

City

Phone

State

Email

Zip Code

Spouse

Social Membership $200 Senior/Single $800 *Seniors must be 55+

Family Membership $1100 *Family includes spouse and 2 children, age 22 & younger.

Children under 21

Junior Membership $175

Children

Send Applications to L. Poignant- 857 State Route 26, Lacon, IL 61540

*Juniors must be 21 & under

309-246-7650 • TimberRidgeLacon.com

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