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VOLUME 145 NO. 36 •

Friday, August 16, 2019

Tonica Fest approaches

Tonica Fest, one of the Illinois Valley’s best late-summer community events, will take place Aug. 23-24. / Page 2 Vol. 145 No. 36 One Section - 12 Pages

© The Tonica News


New principal There’s a new principal in town, and you’ll find him at Lostant Grade School. / 3

Tonica News photo/Jim Dunn

TONICA Along with answering multiple calls during July

and doing training exercises, firefighters moved equipment to their new rescue truck, which is now in service. / 6

MAGNOLIA DAYS Residents of nearby Magnolia are get-

ting ready for a festival of their own on Aug. 16-18. / 5

The Tonica News / • Friday, August 16, 2019




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Tonica Fest will bring two days of fun and family friendly entertainment BY DAVE COOK TONICA — One of the Illinois Valley’s best late-summer community events is Tonica Fest, scheduled for Aug. 23-24, and it promises two days of fun with an abundance of family friendly entertainment.

There will be plenty of live music and opportunities for dancing during the upcoming Tonica Fest celebrations, scheduled for Aug. 23-24. A file photo shows a couple doing a dance number at last year’s festival.

Friday, Aug. 23 Friday’s entertainment will begin at 5 p.m. with the inaugural Tonica Fest Motorcycle Ride-in and Show which will last until 9 p.m. The Higgins Bros. Band will provide live music from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. and the evening will also include plenty of food, a beer garden, a 50/50 drawing and door prizes. There will also be an ABATE membership drive and bike raffle, and awards chosen by the mayor, the people and the firefighters of the Tonica Volunteer Fire Department. Proceeds from the night will benefit the fire department.

Tonica News file art

Saturday, Aug. 24 Saturday’s fun gets off to an early start when the second annual Tonica Fest 5K Run/Walk begins on Main Street at 8 a.m. From 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., festival attendees can try their luck in the new superhero mobile escape room, “Justopolous,” for an admission of $20. The lineup for the townwide parade will begin at 11:30 a.m., with the celebration starting at 12:30 p.m. At 2 p.m., there will be an Aloha Party with ZomNye’t Webster portraying Disney’s “Moana.” From 2 to 4 p.m., there will be live

Dixieland music. From 3 to 8 p.m., there will be free bounce houses for children. From 4 to 8 p.m., the Radium City Rebels will provide the soundtrack for the cruise-in, which will feature a wide variety of eye-catching cars, trucks and motorcycles. From 4 to 7 p.m., the Tonica Volunteer Fire Department will be offering their

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annual pork chop dinner, and there will also be multiple other food and drink vendors available throughout the day. At 9 p.m., Snapshot takes over the musical duties. For more information, visit www., or call 815-4884101 for parade details, 815-922-0382 for motorcycle show questions or 815-228-3177 for cruise information.

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Nick McLaughlin is excited to build new relationships with students and teachers BY DAVE COOK

Tonica News photo/Dave Cook

do what’s best for the students. One experience as a new principal that’s likely been unique for McLaughlin is the recent ransomware attack the school suffered. The cyber thieves began by demanding $8,000 for a single school file, and Malahy said the ransom then went as high as $50,000. The school chose to not submit to these demands, and they subsequently lost all of the stolen information. McLauglin is now part of the team helping to restore and rebuild the files.

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“Anything information of value the state has, so we haven’t really lost that much,” he said. McLaughlin said he chose to move into an administrative position because it lets him step back from the responsibilities of a teacher and build relationships with students in a different way. As a principal, he’ll also be working to help build and manage relationships with parents, as well as being a support system for teachers. “Education is the best way to meet

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the challenges our country is facing, and my job is to help our students find their voice,” he said. McLauglin encouraged participation in the upcoming “Unpack the Backpack Night” scheduled for 6 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 27. That evening, students will receive their school supplies, and both parents and children can meet their teachers and school administrators, as well as enjoy a complimentary dinner. The first day of the new school year will begin at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday, Aug. 28.

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LOSTANT — When the new school year begins at Lostant Grade School, it will not only be a new experience for many of the younger students, but for their new principal as well. Principal Nick McLaughlin is a native of Ottawa and a 2010 graduate of Marquette High School. He earned his bachelor’s degree in English at the University of Illinois at Chicago, and his master’s degree in educational leadership from the University of St. Francis in Joliet. McLaughlin previously taught English at Dakota High School, near Freeport, and at LaSalle-Peru High School. He has also coached football and track teams. “I enjoyed teaching because it’s all about getting to know the kids and developing lessons to help make things real for them,” he said. McLaughlin said he’s thankful to have Superintendent Sandra Malahy to learn from and that he’s excited to get to know both the students and teachers at Lostant Grade. “I’ve got a lot to learn, but our teachers have done a great job, and I’m looking forward to learning the culture and climate here because what they’ve been doing is working,” he said. He added that eventually he’ll begin to pinpoint areas where improvement may be possible and then work together with teachers to

• Friday, August 16, 2019

Lostant Grade School Principal Nick McLaughlin posed for a photo after a recent interview. Parents and students can meet the new principal at the upcoming “Unpack the Backpack Night” scheduled for 6 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 27.

LOCAL NEWS | The Tonica News /

Lostant Grade welcomes new principal


The Tonica News / • Friday, August 16, 2019




USDA cuts forecast for Illinois crop production

Ag director says revised numbers are not as bad as many people expected BY PETER HANCOCK

John Sullivan

Capitol News Illinois SPRINGFIELD — This year’s Illinois corn crop could be as much as 17 percent smaller than last year’s crop, while soybean production could fall as much as 21 percent, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said Monday. Those numbers were part of a highly-anticipated report in which the USDA revised its most recent crop production estimates in light of this year’s unusually wet planting season that delayed or prevented many farmers from getting crops into the ground, followed by a severe heat wave in July that affected the development of those crops. As a result, USDA lowered its estimate of total acres planted for both major crops this year, as well as the per-acre yield for each crop. Nationally, USDA projected that corn production would fall 14 percent this year, while soybean pro-

duction is expected to drop 19 percent. As bad as those numbers are, however, Illinois Department of Agriculture Director John Sullivan said they were not as bad as many farmers and traders

had expected. “All in all, I think that most farmers are surprised at what these numbers came out at. They expected them to be much lower,” Sullivan said. Sullivan said what surprised many people in Illinois is that, despite this year’s weather conditions, USDA did not significantly lower its estimate on corn production, the single largest cash crop in Illinois. Nationally, according to the report, USDA expects farmers to harvest just more than 82 million acres of corn, up slightly from last year’s 81.7 million acres. It also lowered its yield estimate to 169.5 bushels per-acre, down only slightly from last year’s 176.4 bushels peracre. “I think that surprised a lot of people, that that per-acre average

Illinois crop forecast at a glance • 2019 Illinois corn crop — An estimated 17 percent decline in production from last year (1.9 billion bushels, compared to 2.3 billion bushels last year). • Estimated average corn yield in Illinois — 181 bushels per acre, compared to 210 bushels per acre last year. • 2019 Illinois soybean crop — An estimated 21 percent decline in production from last year (546.7 million bushels, compared to 698.7 million bushels last year). • Estimated average soybean yield in Illinois — 55 bushels per acre, compared to 65 bushels per acre last year. — Source: U.S. Department of Agriculture across the nation was that high, and I think most farmers out there, they’re not seeing that,” Sullivan said. “Of course, they’re only looking at our small world here in Illinois, and so it’s probably a bit deceiving, but I think there’s some surprise in those numbers.” For Illinois specifically, however, USDA expects the number of corn acres harvested to fall by only 400,000 acres, to 10.4 million, and the yield to fall less than 14 percent, to 181 bushels per-acre, for total production of just under 1.9 billion bushels, down almost 17 percent from last year’s production of nearly 2.3 billion bushels. Soybean production is expected to fall to 546.7 million bushels, down


Attorney’s solicitation of sex case continued BY DEREK BARICHELLO Shaw Media OTTAWA — A Putnam County attorney charged with solicitation of sex will see whether a motion to toss evidence from a LaSalle County prostitution sting is successful before his next hearing. Roger C. Bolin, 65, of Hennepin was one of nine arrested in a LaSalle County sting at Ottawa and Peru hotels that included the former mayor of Sandwich, who recently pleaded guilty, and an Illinois Valley

Community Hospital official. Bolin serves as a public defender in Putnam County. Bolin is also charged with a complaint of battery. In LaSalle County Circuit Court Wednesday, Aug. 7, Bolin’s next hearing was set for 9 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 18, in Judge H. Chris Ryan’s courtroom. Bolin’s attorney filed a motion to have evidence dismissed, saying law enforcement officers received approval from the state’s attorney’s office for the ability to listen and

record conversations, but noted solicitation of sex is not listed as an eligible offense to acquire evidence through recordings. IVCH official James “Jim” G. Schaefer, 54, of Peru, also filed a similar motion, saying the audio and video recordings placed in a hotel during his April 4 arrest were illegal. Schaefer’s hearing is scheduled Thursday, Sept. 12, six days prior to Bolin’s, meaning it should give insight to what will happen with Bolin’s similar motion.

with Willett, Hofmann and Associates to start design work on the replacement project. The money will come from out of the county’s bridge funds, said County Engineer Larry Kinzer. When the bridge undergoes a replacement in 2022, it will be closed to traffic, Kinzer indicated.

State’s attorney receives statutory pay increase The LaSalle County State’s Attorney’s salary will increase from $170,171.18 to $173,744.77 after a 2.1 percent cost-ofliving adjustment by the state. The state reimburses LaSalle County $151,913.77 for the salary of the state’s attorney.

IN BRIEF Red, White and Blue bridge replacement set for 2022 The Red, White and Blue Bridge, which carries County Highway 57 over the Vermilion River east of Leonore, is scheduled to be replaced in 2022. The LaSalle County Board approved engineering services of $197,090.22

from last year’s 698.7 million bushels. That’s based on a projection of 9.9 million acres harvested, at 55 bushels per acre, down from last year’s 10.7 million acres harvested at 65 bushels per acre. Last week, USDA announced it had approved Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s request for a statewide agricultural disaster declaration. That allows farmers and agribusinesses that have experienced weather-related losses to apply for low-interest emergency loans to restore or replace essential property, cover production costs, pay essential living expenses, reorganize the family farming operation or refinance certain non-real estate debts, according to state officials.

LASALLE COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE Speeding At 6:31 p.m. on Aug. 4, deputies cited Joseph A. Blanco, 31, of Wenona for speeding 62 mph in a 45 mph zone, operating an uninsured motor vehicle,and violation of classification (no motorcycle license) following a traffic stop on Route 251 near West Second Street in Lostant.

TONICA VOLUNTEER FIRE DEPARTMENT Grass fire At 1:13 p.m. on Aug. 8, the Tonica Volunteer Fire Department responded to a roadside grass fire located along the northbound lane of Interstate 39 near mile marker 47. The fire was quickly contained and extinguished without incident. The department responded with three pieces of equipment and cleared the scene in about 30 minutes.



Tonica News file photo

Annual Magnolia Days celebration will be Aug. 16-18 BY DAVE COOK MAGNOLIA — A weekend filled with celebratory events and activities is scheduled for the upcoming Magnolia Days on Aug. 16-18. The popular “Cruise-In” kicks off the weekend with a Friday evening car show from 5 to 8 p.m. on Chicago Street in Magnolia. Registration starts at 4:30 p.m., and each entry is $10. Music will be provided by AMC Sound. Judging and voting will begin at 6:30 p.m., and awards, door prizes and the 50/50 winner will be announced at 8 p.m. “A celebration in Magnolia is important to let people know we’re

here and are proud of our community,” Peggy Smith of Magnolia said. “We enjoy it and like to share what we have to offer with others,” Smith said. Also scheduled for Friday evening are bingo games at the fire department from 6 to 9 p.m., and cards are available for a donation. A book sale and children’s crafts will be held at the nearby library at 6 p.m. A family movie will be shown at dusk in the village park (bring your own lawn chairs). A variety of food and drinks will be available from vendors, the Magnolia Township Preservation Association, LJ’s, JD’s and Sally Sue’s Coffee. There will also be a circus calliope and a stagecoach robbery show at 7 p.m.

Saturday downtown events Saturday’s fun begins at 9 a.m. with an open house event at the Magnolia Township Preservation Association, which will last until 3

p.m. A lunch and bake sale will be available from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., and a program on Mt. Palatine/Judson College will be presented at 2:30 p.m. From 9 a.m. to noon, a farmers’ market and vendor show will be open on Chicago Street. From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., an antique tractor display will be available for viewing. At 2:30 p.m., a program on the history of Grange and Clear Creek will be presented at the Magnolia Township Preservation Association building. Street music will be provided by Richard Selquist from 10 a.m. to noon. A street dance will be held from 8 to 11 p.m., and the music will be provided by 303. There will also be a food stand, lemon shake-ups and kettle corn available at the fire department; food and a beer wagon at JD’s Bar; barbecue at the Magnolia Township

Preservation Association; and coffee from Sally Sue’s Coffee.

Saturday ball diamond events At Magnolia’s ball diamond, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., there will be children’s games. At 1 p.m., there will be chicken races, stick horse barrel racing and coffee sack races.

Sunday downtown events Sunday’s celebrations will begin with a community church service in the park at 10 a.m. From 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., the Magnolia Township Preservation Association open house will continue, and will also include a lunch for the public and the participants of the PC Tractor Drive. For information on the men’s baseball and co-ed softball tournaments scheduled for this weekend, call Joe at 815-303-7051 or Kathy at 815-8306128.

Hit Your Brakes and Slow Your Speed for the One and Only Bank You’ll Ever Need. Have a Great Time at the Tonica Fest!

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• Friday, August 16, 2019

‘Cruise-In’ to Magnolia for a good time

LOCAL NEWS | The Tonica News /

Bob Cofoid polishes his Chevy Camaro at last year’s Magnolia Days Cruise-In car show. This year’s Magnolia Days will take place Aug. 16-18 with activities planned for all ages.

The Tonica News / • Friday, August 16, 2019




Firefighters answer multiple calls, train to improve skills TONICA — At the August meeting of the Tonica Volunteer Fire Department, Chief Al Stremlau noted there were 10 emergency calls in July. The calls consisted of one car fire, one mutual-aid call to Utica for a structure fire, one mutual-aid call to Leonore for a tractor fire, one mutual-aid call to Cedar Point for a structure fire, four ambulance requests, and two accidental medical alert button activations. The year-to-date call total for 2019 is 85, 23 fewer than the July 2018 year-to-date total. Training in July included a review of standard operating guidelines for emergency vehicle drivers. This training will continue through August to enable every member to meet this fire department requirement. Training also included water stream application, hose line advancement and rural tanker operations with a fold-a-tank.

Officer training covered command and control, leadership, communication and organizational skills for the review and operation of apparatus and equipment, and verifying the operational readiness of personnel and equipment. Lt. Dan Francisco aided with 26 hours of instruction for the area’s basic fire operations class this year. The classes were held at various locations throughout the area, and students successfully completing all written and practical requirements can receive state certification. Francisco also completed the NIMS 800-C Introduction to National Response Framework training. New EMT Morgan Brandner completed the fire department orientation with Stremlau. EMS training covered patients with an “altered mental status.” Stremlau noted the equipment from the old rescue truck has been moved to the new truck, which is now in

service. The old truck is for sale, and people may contact any fire department member for information. Proceeds from the Tonica Fest cruises on Aug. 23-24, as well as the pork chop dinner, will be donated to the fire department. Lt. James Breit made repairs to two of the dump valves on the pumper-tanker. The annual pump testing of three fire department pumpers was completed with no problem found. The department accepted the resignation of firefighter Jim Ott, a member for 31 years. He served in various positions of responsibility, including two years as chief. Because of his many years of honorable service, Ott was made an honorary member. Stremlau will schedule a demonstration of additional battery powered extrication spreaders, rams and cutters. An estimated cost of these tools is about $30,000.  

LOSTANT FIRE DEPARTMENT Structure fire at Phoenix Paper Products At approximately 2:30 a.m. on Aug. 8, the Lostant Fire Department responded to a structure fire at Phoenix Paper Products located at 1652 Route 251. Firefighters arrived to find a fire on the southwest side of the building, which was extinguished.  Workers had noticed an odor of something burning, searched the building, and located the fire. The employees used several fire extinguishers on the fire prior to fire department arriving.  Lostant Fire Department’s autoaid was activated, dispatching the Toluca and Wenona Fire Departments, and the Tonica Volunteer Fire Department also responded through mutual-aid.  There were no injuries, and the Illinois State Fire Marshal’s Office was contacted and will investigate.

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TONICA — The Tonica High School alumni reunion will be Saturday, Sept. 14, at the Oglesby Elks. The Class of 1979 will be hosting the event. Cocktails and registration will start at 6 p.m., and dinner will be at 7 p.m. The cost remains at $30 per person. To make a reservation,

call Sue Huss Ashley at 815-481-6399 or Jan Wiertz Musgrove at 815-2024607. Checks can be mailed to Karla Walgenbach Goskusky, 534 N. 1950th Road, Tonica, IL 61370. Indicate if you are celebrating an anniversary and want to reserve a table for your classmates.


IVYSO auditions set for Aug. 24-25 ivysorchestra@gmail.comorbycalling ​ 815-252-1822​ . Audition excerpts are available on group’s website at www. This season’s concerts are scheduled for 3:30 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 17, and Sunday, April 5, 2020, in the Matthiessen Auditorium at LaSalle-Peru Township High School.


Auditions for Stage 212’s ‘The Game’s Afoot’ will be Aug. 23 and 24 LASALLE — Director Larry Kelsey has announced auditions for the final production of Stage 212’s 2019 season, “The Game’s Afoot,” the ingenious and hilarious mystery/thriller/farce by Ken Ludwig, will be at 7 p.m. Friday, Aug. 23, and Saturday, Aug. 24, at the theater, 700 First St. in LaSalle. It is December 1936, and Broadway star William Gillette, admired the world over for his leading role in the play “Sherlock Holmes,” has invited his fellow cast members to his Connecticut castle for a weekend of revelry. But when one of the guests is stabbed to death, the festivities in this isolated house of tricks and mirrors quickly turn dangerous. Kelsey will be casting one man

and one woman able to play 25-30, two men and three women able to play 40-50, and one woman able to play 70-75. Those auditioning will be asked to read selected passages from the script. Perusal scripts are available by visiting the Stage 212 ticket office during regular hours, 4 to 6 p.m. Monday and 9 a.m. to noon Saturday. Familiarity with the script is not required to audition. For more information, visit or the Stage 212 Audition page on Facebook. “The Game’s Afoot” will be presented Nov. 8-17. Stage 212 auditions are open to all regardless of prior theatrical experience.

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UTICA — The University of Illinois Extension will offer a training program at Starved Rock State Park for those interested in becoming a Master Naturalist volunteer. The mission of this program is to provide science-based educational opportunities that connect people with nature and help them become engaged environmental stewards. Becoming a volunteer will provide opportunities to explore and expand the understanding of the natural world, provide educational outreach, and assist with environmental stewardship projects with local Extension partners. This year, the University of Illinois – Bureau, LaSalle, Marshall and Putnam counties unit, along with Starved Rock State Park, are excited to offer volunteer training starting in the fall of 2019. The training will cover numerous subjects including Geology, Archaeology, Botany, Wetlands, Ornithology, Forests of Illinois, and Entomology. Training will be held one day a week over the course of 10 weeks, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., from Sept. 3 to Nov. 5. Classroom time will be spent at the Starved Rock State Park Visitor Center. During training, natural areas will be visited for hands-on learning, including sites at Starved Rock State Park, Matthiessen State Park, Day-

ton Bluffs, the Nachusa Grasslands, and the Dixon Waterfowl Refuge. Volunteers completing the training will then work on Extension approved environmental stewardship and educational outreach projects. To maintain Master Naturalist certification, volunteers must complete 10 hours of continuing education, and 30 hours of approved service work in the local area annually. The U of I Extension provides ongoing training and coordinates regular meetings to support volunteers. Adults aged 18 and older are welcome to register. The cost for the training to become a certified volunteer is $250. For more information, or to sign up, visit https://go.illinois. edu/2019mntraining, or call Meg Overocker, program coordinator, at 815-433-0707. Spaces are filling up, and registration closes Aug. 23. Preference will be given to residents of Bureau, LaSalle, Marshall and Putnam counties. If you need a reasonable accommodation, please indicate when registering. Early requests are strongly encouraged to allow time for meeting needs. For more information call the U of I Extension – LaSalle County at 815-433-0707. Extension offices are located in Princeton, Ottawa, Henry, and in Oglesby on the IVCC campus.

LIFT event set for Sept. 18 LASALLE — Christian women of all ages are invited to attend a Ladies In Fellowship Together (LIFT) event at 3 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 8, at the Grace United Methodist Church, 1345 Chartres St. in LaSalle. The theme for the afternoon is “Festival of Foods.” Sara Fitzpatrick, chef at HyVee, will be sharing a live

cooking demonstration and food samples. All women in the Illinois Valley area are encouraged to attend. The afternoon will include fellowship, fun and fall refreshments. RSVPs are encouraged, but are not required to attend. For more information, contact Lois at 815-6631724 or

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• Friday, August 16, 2019

PERU — The Illinois Valley Youth Symphony Orchestra will hold auditions Saturday, Aug. 24, and Sunday, Aug. 25, at the Illinois Valley YMCA, located at 300 Walnut St. in Peru. Current and prospective members may arrange an audition time with orchestra manager Jennifer Antkowiak Etscheid by emailing​

Master Naturalist program will be offered at Starved Rock State Park

COMMUNITY | The Tonica News /

Tonica High School alumni reunion set



MENUS Putnam County Community Center

Applications are being accepted for WIN grant funding any non-profit organization whose programs and services educate, empower and enhance the lives of women and children throughout LaSalle, Bureau and Putnam counties. Applications will be reviewed by the Grant Review Team of the Network, and finalists will present their case for support at the next WIN meeting on Sept. 12. Funding will be awarded at the annual Celebration of Giving on Nov. 17. Ninety-six percent of the funds

Aug. 19 — Chicken patty on bun, tater tots, zucchini and tomatoes, yogurt with fruit. Aug. 20 — Baked spaghetti, tossed salad with toppings, garlic bread, pineapple chunks, dessert. Aug. 21 — Chicken salad on bun, carrot sticks, grapes, chips, cookie. Aug. 22 — Salad bar and ice cream social. Aug. 23 — Taco casserole with pinto beans, cheese salsa on taco shell with corn and black beans, banana-watermelon. 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.

contributed throughout the year to the Network are returned to the community through annual grants and used to grow the WIN Endowment, which will support women and children throughout Starved Rock Country in perpetuity. To learn more about the Women Inspired Network and/or apply for a WIN grant, visit women-inspired-network/ or contact the Foundation office at 815252-2906.


Yednock launches local Opioid Advisory Council OTTAWA — State Rep. Lance Yednock, D-Ottawa, is announcing his first-ever Opioid Advisory Committee to bring together local advocates to offer solutions to the opioid crisis. “This crisis is out of control, and I want to see Illinois lead the charge on cracking down on this epidemic,” Yednock said. “My first meeting of this advisory committee will bring together community leaders and other experts on opioid abuse to discuss how Illinois can adopt better

policies to help people and prevent future substance abuse issues.” Yednock is launching his first meeting of his Opioid Advisory Committee to bring together local experts and advocates to bring forward solutions to ending the opioid crisis. At the meeting, Yednock will highlight the legislation he supported like House Bill 2222, which would provide emergency first responders with real-time information on opioid overdoses, and House Resolution 58,

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which asks the Illinois Department of Public Health to develop and adopt new guidelines for the prescription of opioid prescription drugs. Yednock will be holding additional meetings over the coming months, where area residents will be encouraged to attend those and future meetings. If you or someone you know is experiencing opioid use disorder, please call the Illinois Helpline for Opioids and Other Substances at 833-2FINDHELP.

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OTTAWA — The Women Inspired Network, an initiative of the Starved Rock Country Community Foundation, will award $10,000 in grant funding to one or more local charities. The funds for the awards are contributed by members and friends of WIN throughout the year and are then awarded through a competitive grant process. Applications for grant funding can be submitted through Friday, Aug. 23, by


The Tonica News / • Friday, August 16, 2019




Jim Dunn

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Associate Editor

The Tonica News

Perhaps state should use portion of revenue to study costs, benefits

Jim Nowlan revenue, after Nevada. If a person wants to gamble, fine with me, but should the state be in the business of aggressively seducing residents into gambling? Policymakers trumpet the revenue to the state, though every dollar to the state is a buck lost by a gambler. There are costs as well, of course, never trumpeted. A good friend of mine committed suicide a few years back, because of gambling debts racked up at a casino boat. More recently, a lovely lady I know lost the love of her life, after pilfering deep into six figures from his banking accounts to support her gambling problem. So, there are both benefits and costs. On the plus side, the state generates about 3 percent of its revenue from legal gambling. Some older folks I know relieve the boredom of their lives by spending a few hours and a few bucks on the nearby boats. And fantasy value: From time to time, I dream deliciously about all I would do with the millions in winnings from hitting the Big Lotto, or whatever they call it — even though I have never purchased a ticket.

I still think gambling is, overall, a quest for fool’s gold. State and local governments (mostly the state) and the gambling industry are the big winners. The average family in Illinois spends $750 a year on lottery tickets (true; 4 million families of 3 people each into $3 billion wagered); the state keeps about 40 percent, after prizes. In 2018, video gaming took in $1.4 billion after winnings, with the industry keeping about $1 billion. Various sources I have consulted suggest that 2 percent to 3 percent of all adults are problem gamblers, who by definition cause harm to themselves or others as a result of the urge to gamble continually. That would be 40,000 to 60,000 people in Illinois. SMR Research found a few years ago that 14 percent of all bankruptcies nationwide were tied to gambling.

Gambling and the poor The poor don’t gamble more dollars than the better-off, but they lose a bigger slice of their limited incomes. Think of the family stress and heartbreak from gambling by those without the money to spare. Governments ballyhoo the great things they will do with the losses of gamblers: solve education funding problems and build university laboratories, for example. The money helps, yet the revenues are

almost always less than projected, and, at but 4 percent of total revenue, expanded gambling revenue won’t solve our state’s fiscal woes. So, do the benefits exceed the costs? No one knows, even though there is an academic cottage industry devoted to gambling studies. How do you value the fantasy benefits, which I think are real? How do you assign a dollar cost to suicides and family breakup? Illinois is not going to pull back anytime soon from its addiction, you might say, to gambling revenue, certainly not in the short term. So, I have a modest suggestion. Since Illinois is becoming a “leader” in gambling, and thus a natural laboratory, let’s devote a tiny slice of our gambling revenues to ongoing research into the underlying costs and benefits of gambling in our state. We have respected think tanks at our public universities. Annual reports of their research could help guide us to policies that improve the ratio of benefits to costs, whatever they might be. It’s the least we can do.

Note to readers: Jim Nowlan has taught political science at universities in Illinois and China. He has worked for three Illinois governors and is the lead author of “Fixing Illinois” (University of Illinois Press, 2014). He can be reached at

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR Marijuana law allows on-site consumption, unless banned To the editor: The marijuana law includes an exemption to the Smoke-Free Illinois Act ban on indoor smoking, and lets cities decide whether to allow on-site marijuana use at bars, restaurants and cannabis smoking lounges, the Chicago Sun-Times reported. State Rep. Kelly Cassidy and her colleagues decided that social consumption of marijuana would be allowed, but not licensed by the state, leaving that up to local officials, according to the Chicago Sun-

Times. Public health and safety are concerns with on-site consumption. Legislators thought video gambling would only be limited to bars, restaurants and veteran organizations. However, video gambling machines are everywhere, except in the 125 municipalities and counties where they are banned. We could see a similar situation with marijuana unless local officials pass an ordinance to ban recreational marijuana dispensaries, processing, transporting, cultivation facilities and on-site consumption of marijuana in municipalities and counties.

Write to us Letters to the Editor should not be more than 500 words in length. Only one person can sign a Letter to the Editor. The author of the letter must include his/her name, hometown and telephone number. The author’s name and hometown will be published. Unsigned letters are never read or published. Living near marijuana dispensaries makes youths more likely to use marijuana, according to a study

by the Rand Corp. Youths who use marijuana are more likely to experience negative consequences, such as increased risk of mental and physical health problems, according to the researchers. Contact your mayor, city council and county board to ask for a ban on recreational marijuana businesses and on-site consumption. Act now to protect your family and community before it is too late.

Anita Bedell Springfield Note to readers: Anita Bedell is executive director of Illinois Church Action on Alcohol and Addiction Problems.

First Amendment: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof, or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.”

• Friday, August 16, 2019


t the convenience store in my rural town, there is a new “wall” of plastic boxes filled with colorful lottery instantgame tickets, right on the counter, crowding my effort to check out; you can’t avoid them. I noted as much to the employee behind the counter. She cast a furtive eye around, then scrunched her pretty face into a frown: “I don’t go for them. I see too many buying tickets who shouldn’t.” You can’t avoid gambling in Illinois. The state is, for example, home to 30,000 video slot and poker terminals, more than any state in the nation, in 6,800 taverns and restaurants, more gambling locations than in Nevada. And all that is before the recent massive expansion of gambling approved by our lawmakers and governor — online sports betting (which will be BIG); more casinos, video terminals and locations (truck stops added); and higher gambling limits. According to the state’s legislative research agency, Illinois is destined to become the biggest gambling state in the nation by


| The Tonica News /

Is more gambling too much? How would we know?


that a public hearing on the 2019-2020 School Year, FY 2020, District Budget will be held at 6:15 P.M. on September 18, 2019 at Tonica Grade School, 535 N. 1981st Road, Tonica, IL in the Media Center. Submitted 999Julie • Legal Zimmer, Board Secretary Tonica CCSD #79

––––––––––––––––––––Classifieds –––––––––––––––––––– General Terms Marketplace and Policies 450 • Under $1000

The Tonica News reserves the right to classify correctly, edit, reject or cancel any advertisement at any time in accordance with its policy. All ads must be checked for errors by the advertiser, on the first day of publication. We will be responsible for the first incorrect insertion, and its liabilities shall be limited to the price on one insertion. CLASSIFIED LINE AD & LEGAL DEADLINES: • Friday deadline: Friday before by 3pm We Accept Call 815-875-4461

232 • Business Opportunities ********** THE CLASSIFIED Advertising Department of the Tonica News Does not have the opportunity to fully investigate the credibility of each advertiser appearing within these columns. If an offer sounds “too good to be true” it probably is. Proceed with caution if you are asked to send money or to give a credit card number. Proceed with caution in calling 900 phone numbers. All phone numbers prefixed by”900” are charged to the CALLER. Charges may be assessed on a “per minute” basis rather than a “per call” basis. The Tonica News Classifieds makes every effort to qualify these charges for the reader. If you have a concern about an advertiser, please contact: Better Business Bureau 330 North Wabash Chicago, IL 60611 312 832-0500

450 • Under $1000 Dayton 5000 wt generator, elect. start, $400. Seahawk Pedal Boat, exc. condition, $325. 815-8665088/815-303-6665. Tonica News Buying? Selling? Renting? Hiring? Call 815-433-2001 to place your ad. Tonica News Classified

************ HAVE SOMETHING TO SELL? Put your ad in for FREE Items $1,000 or less can run FREE for 1 time. Limit of 5 lines. Up to 3 items with price and price totaling under $1,000. 1 ad per household per week. No commercial ads, firearms or animal sales. E-mail information to: classified@ (include your name, address & phone number)

767 • Mobile Home Sales **************** PUBLISHER'S NOTICE All real estate advertising in this newspaper is subject to the Fair Housing Act which makes it illegal to advertise “any preference, limitation or discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status or national origin, or an intention, to make any such preference, limitation or discrimination.” Familial status includes children under the age of 18 living with parents or legal custodians, pregnant women and people securing custody of children under 18. This newspaper will not knowingly accept any advertising for real estate which is in violation of the law. Our readers are hereby informed that all dwellings advertised in this newspaper are available on an equal opportunity basis. To complain of discrimination call, HUD tollfree at 800 669-9777. The toll-free telephone number for the hearing impaired is 800 927-9275 Tonica News Classified Call: 815-433-2001 Email: Buying? Selling? Renting? Hiring? Call 815-433-2001 to place your ad. Tonica News Classified

999 • Legal


IN THE CIRCUIT (Published in Tonica COURT OF THE News August 16, 2019) THIRTEENTH 1691508 JUDICIAL CIRCUIT LASALLE COUNTY, Need help OTTAWA, ILLINOIS Rebuilding, ESTATE OF Repairing WILLIAM J. or Replanting? JOHNSON, JR., Check out the Marketplace DECEASED Business Directory NO. 2019-P-168 in today's Classified PUBLICATION FOR (Published in Tonica News August 16, 2019) CLAIMS 1691508 CLAIM NOTICE Estate of WILLIAM 999 • Legal 999 • Legal J. JOHNSON, JR., Deceased. Notice is given of PUBLIC NOTICE the death of WILLIAM UNITED STATES OF AMERICA STATE J. JOHNSON, JR., OF ILLINOIS, COUNTY OF LaSALLE IN of Oglesby, Illinois. THE CIRCUIT COURT OF THE Letters of office were THIRTEENTH JUDICIAL CIRCUIT issued on August 2, 2019, to MICHAEL B. ESTATE OF JOHNSON, of 540 7th MARY V. DAGRAEDT Street, LaSalle, IL Deceased No. 2019-P-166 61301, whose attorney NOTICE TO HEIRS AND LEGATEES is Gerald M. Hunter, WHOSE NAMES OR ADDRESSES ARE Ltd., 129 W. Walnut UNKNOWN AND CLAIM NOTICE Street, Oglesby, IL Notice is given of the death of Mary V. 61348. Claims against the Dagraedt, of the City of Oglesby, LaSalle estate may be filed County, Illinois. Letters of office as Executor with the office were issued on July 31, 2019, to Kathy Rossi, of the Circuit Clerk, 331 W. Walnut St., Oglesby, IL 61348, whose Probate Division, attorney is John Balestri of Bemabei, Balestri LaSalle County Court- & Fiocchi, 149 Gooding St., LaSalle, IL 61301. Notice is given to any heirs or legatees house, Downtown Courthouse, Ottawa, whose names or addresses are not stated in IL 61350, or with the petition for letters of office, that an order the representative, or was entered by the Court on July 31, 2019, both, within 6 months admitting the decedent's will to probate. from the date of Within 42 days after the date of the order of issuance of letters, admission you may file a petition with the and any claim not Court to require proof of the will by testimofiled within that ny of the witnesses to the will in open court period is barred. or other evidence, as provided in Section 6-21 Copies of a claim filed of the Probate Act of 1975 (755 ILCS 5/6-21). with the Clerk must be You also have the right under Section 8-1 of mailed or delivered to the Probate Act of 1975 (755 ILCS 5/8-1) to the representative and contest the validity of the Will by filing a to the attorney within petition with the Court within 6 months after 10 days after it has admission of the will to probate. Claims against the estate may be e-filed in been filed. Greg Vaccaro the Office of the Circuit Clerk, Probate Clerk of the 13th Division, LaSalle County Courthouse, 119 W. Judicial Circuit Court Madison St., Room 201, Ottawa, Illinois Ottawa, Illinois 61350, or with the representative or both, within 6 months from the date of first publication of this Notice. If claim notice is per(Published in Tonica News August 16, 23, 30, sonally mailed or delivered to a creditor of the above estate, then claim must be filed in 2019) 1690310 the above entitled cause within 3 months PUBLIC NOTICE from the date of mailing or delivery, whichever is later. Any claims not filed within the Tonica Community above periods are barred. Consolidated Grade E-fling is now mandatory for documents School District #79 in civil cases with limited exemptions. To 2019-2020 School e-file, you must first create an account Year (FY2020) with an e-filing serviceprovider. Visit https:// Budget Hearing Notice is hereby to learn more and to select a service given that the provider. If you need additional help or tentative budget for have trouble e-filing, visit http:// the Tonica Communi- ty Consolidated Grade Copies of a claim filed with the clerk must School District #79, be mailed or delivered to the representative LaSalle County, for and to the attorney within 10 days after it has the 2019-2020 School been filed. Year, FY 2020, is Dated this 1st day of August, 2019. available for public John Balestri inspection at the Bernabei, Balestri & Fiocchi school office on Attorney for the Petitioner school days during 149 Gooding Street La Salle, IL 61301 district office hours.. TELEPHONE: (815)223-6600 Notice is also given that a public hearing (Published in the Tonica News August 16, 23, on the 2019-2020 30, 2019) 1691324 School Year, FY 2020, District Budget will be held at 6:15 P.M. on September 18, 2019 at

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Friday, August 23

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