Washington, Ill., is full of both optimistic signs and lots of construction crews as the town rebuilds after a half-mile-wide tornado devastated the area last November.
(Alan Greenblatt/NPR)
April 23, 2014

In Illinois, A Town That’s Half-Destroyed But Filled With Hope

Washington is just starting to rebuild. Much of the central Illinois town was wiped away by a half-mile wide tornado last November. In all, 1,108 homes were destroyed or rendered uninhabitable — a huge share of the housing stock in a city of 15,000.


Ann-Marie Stimphson and Wes Kocher of Champaign plant a tree on Saturday, April 5, 2014 in Gifford, Ill.
(Sean Powers/WILL)
April 05, 2014

New Trees in Gifford Help Rebuild Community

If you travel to the Champaign County town of Gifford, you will still find destroyed homes and trees snapped like twigs by a tornado last November. After a long, bitter winter, people are working to put the community back together.


March 19, 2014

Johnson County Voters Reject Fracking Ban

Voters in southern Illinois' Johnson County have rejected a ballot referendum that could have prompted the county's governing board to restrict a form of oil drilling.


March 13, 2014

US EPA Hearings Set On Mahomet Aquifer

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has scheduled two hearings in May on a proposal to declare a central Illinois sole source aquifer an important source of drinking water. 


A home all but wiped away in Washington, Ill. during the November tornado.
(Lee Strubinger/IPR)
February 27, 2014

Illinois Politicians Challenge FEMA Formula

This week, Gov. Pat Quinn gave a keynote speech at a forum in Washington, D.C. on natural disasters. The governor says Illinois has suffered a record-number of incidents in recent years, and yet the state has come up short when it's sought help from the federal government. 


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