Illinois Public Media News



WILL - Illinois Public Media News - August 16, 2012

Hearing Held on Storing PCBs Near Mahomet Aquifer

By Sean Powers

Illinois lawmakers held a hearing Thursday at the Piatt County Farm Bureau in Monticello on proposed legislation that could prevent a toxic substance from being stored above the Mahomet Aquifer. Critics worry the substance could harm thousands of residents who rely on the Aquifer for drinking water.

Categories: Environment






WILL - Illinois Public Media News - July 05, 2012

Lake Decatur Levels Could Mean More Water Restrictions

Lake Decatur water levels are about a foot below where the city would like them to be for this time of year.

Given the 10-day outlook for precipitation, Water Management Director Keith Alexander says it's more likely Decatur will again seek voluntary conservation measures, like it did late last summer.

The city had to enforce mandatory restrictions on use by October through most of December.

Alexander says there are plenty of things residents can do to cut down on water use.

"Not only does it help us out with conservation measures, but saves them dollars as well," he said. "Less water use means a lower water bill."

On any given day, Alexander says 75-percent of the city's water goes to commercial and industrial customers. Last year, the city asked restaurants to stop serving glasses of water, unless a patron asked for one.

"Reduce or eliminate all your outside landscape watering that you can possibly do," Alexander said. "Another thing to do would be to consider not doing any new landscape plantings this summer because it's going to be tough keeping those plants alive."

State climatologist Jim Angel says Decatur Airport registered .75 inches of rainfall in June, when normal precipitation for the month is 4.50 a half inches.


WILL - Illinois Public Media News - July 04, 2012

Champaign Mayor Lobbies Governor on Plastic Bag Bill

The mayor of Champaign was part of a group that met in Chicago Tuesday with Gov. Pat Quinn --- asking him to veto a plastic bag recycling bill.

The measure (Senate Bill 3442) requires businesses that use plastic bags and plastic wrap to participate in a statewide recycling program. But it also bars home rule communities from setting up their own, stricter, rules --- like a ban or fee which the Champaign City Council is considering. Champaign Mayor Don Gerard said he doesn't see why the bill has to limit the role of local governments.

"In other municipalities around the country, they have done these exact same kind of bills," he said. "Only now, coincidentally, ours has a little caveat that we can't impose fees or bans or have our own ordinances; that they take away our home-rule authority and give the power to the State. I don't need another state program in Champaign."

But the bill's sponsor, State Sen. Terry Link (D-Waukegan), said the ban on local rules is so businesses won't be confused about the requirements for plastic bags and wrap throughout the state.

"These stores, like a Target, everybody wants a Target to come into their community," Link said. "Well, they want to know what rules they're playing by in those communities. So, if you do a statewide standard, they know the rules they're playing in all these areas."

The clause in Link's bill barring cities from making their own rules on plastic bags was added just days after the Champaign City Council voted to look at proposals for taxing or banning the bags at local stores. The bill passed during the final days of the spring legislative session, and has been sent to the governor.

Besides Mayor Gerard, the group opposed to the bill that met with Governor Quinn included representatives of Sierra Club Illinois, Environment Illinois, the Alliance for the Great Lakes and the Chicago Recycling Coalition; Chicago Alderman John Arena, and 12-year old Abby Goldberg of Grayslake, who gathered more than 154,000 signatures against the bill in an online petition drive.

(Photo courtesy of Champaign Mayor Don Gerard)

Download mp3 file

Page 20 of 37 pages ‹ First  < 18 19 20 21 22 >  Last ›