Local News

dvn rashid swearing in locally

Campaign 2024: Rashid to seek re-election in 21st District 

By Bob Bong / December 15, 2023 / Comments Off on Campaign 2024: Rashid to seek re-election in 21st District 

By Bob Bong  The holiday season also marks the beginning of the 2024 election cycle in Illinois as candidates in the March 19 primary have already filed their petitions to run. The 2022 primary was moved to June, but next year’s primary is moving back to its traditional third Tuesday in March date. The biggest…

Read More
dvn 12 3 willow springs town hall2 2023

Consultant backs Willow Springs on zoning of LTHS parcel

By Bob Bong / December 8, 2023 / Comments Off on Consultant backs Willow Springs on zoning of LTHS parcel

By Steve Metsch  All for one and one for all was the theme of last week’s community meeting held at the Willow Springs Village Hall. Concerned residents, politicians from the village and surrounding communities joined in their opposition to any industrial development of a parcel of land in the village owned by the Lyons Township…

Read More
dvn 11 13 mike lipinski award 2023

Willow Spring’s Mike Smigielski wins Lipinski All American Award

By Bob Bong / November 15, 2023 / Comments Off on Willow Spring’s Mike Smigielski wins Lipinski All American Award

By Carol McGowan Willow Springs resident Mike Smigielski last month received the Congressman Bill Lipinski All American Award. Smigielski, who is active in local Lions Clubs, was presented the award by Roberts Park Fire Protection District President Brian Bernardoni at the October 12 Willow Springs Village Board meeting. Bernardoni was asked to present the award…

Read More
dvn aero building

AERO opens new facility in Burbank

By Bob Bong / September 22, 2023 /

By Bob Bong When Queen of Peace High School in Burbank announced it was closing in 2018, the good folks at AERO special education co-op saw a golden opportunity. They purchased the school’s 13-acre site at 7659 S. Linder Ave. in August 2019 for $3.2 million. The plan was to retrofit the high school for…

Read More
5

A River Runs Through It: Weekend event harkens back to Fur Trade Era 

By Kelly White / September 14, 2023 /

By Kelly White  The 30th annual A River Thru History – The Des Plaines Valley Rendezvous returned again this year to Columbia Woods Forest Preserve in Willow Springs for a weekend filled with historic facts, recreation and fun. Taking place at the intersection of Archer Avenue and Willow Springs Road, the event focused on the…

Read More
mike porfirio headshot Copy

News from Springfield: 12 school districts to receive an additional $6.2 million 

By Bob Bong / September 2, 2023 /

State Senator Mike Porfirio (D-11th) announced that 12 school districts across the area will receive over $6.2 million in additional funding to help address the financial challenges of recent years.  “Evidence-based funding supports educational opportunities that contribute to the long-term success of our students,” said Porfirio. “Through this funding formula, we can ensure that a…

Read More
3 1

A River Thru History Rendezvous coming back to Willow Springs 

By Bob Bong / September 2, 2023 / Comments Off on A River Thru History Rendezvous coming back to Willow Springs 

The 30th annual A River Thru History – The Des Plaines Valley Rendezvous, is returning to Columbia Woods Forest Preserve in Willow Springs, Saturday, September 9, and Sunday, September 10.    Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday.    Public parking is at the UPS…

Read More
2 4

Police to hit the roof at Dunkin’ Donuts for Special Olympics 

By Bob Bong / May 18, 2023 / Comments Off on Police to hit the roof at Dunkin’ Donuts for Special Olympics 

By Bob Bong  Police departments across the south suburbs are gearing up for another high-flying fundraiser for Special Olympics Illinois. Police will be hanging out at more than 325 Dunkin’ Donut coffee shops across Illinois starting at 5 a.m. Friday, May 19, for another edition of Cop on a Rooftop. They will be collecting donations…

Read More
dvn tyler gallo

Willow Springs village worker killed in motorcycle accident 

By Bob Bong / April 19, 2023 /

By Bob Bong  A Willow Springs man who worked for the village was killed Friday night when the motorcycle he was riding crashed into a car in Joliet. Tyler Gallo, 20, died in the crash, according to the Will County Coroner’s Office. In a news release, Joliet police said Gallo was heading north on Northeast…

Read More
Casten Hodgkins officials and employees

Casten tour makes stop in Hodgkins, Willow Springs

By Carol Mcgowan / March 2, 2023 / Comments Off on Casten tour makes stop in Hodgkins, Willow Springs

By Carol McGowan U.S. Rep. Sean Casten met with Hodgkins Mayor Ernest Millsap and other village officials and employees on February 15 as part of a tour he’s doing to get to meet mayors and people in the southwest suburban portion of the new 6th District. In a recent interview, Casten said he planned outings…

Read More
the leadershop logo

LeaderShop Alumni Association to host peaceful rally during Thursday board meeting

The LeaderShop Alumni Association, a group of volunteers, previous staff members, former board members, funders, donors, and stakeholders who are community minded and energized by the mission of The LeaderShop, will host a peaceful rally in support of change to current leadership for the nonprofit agency. The rally will be held during The LeaderShop Board…

The Mariano’s store in Frankfort would be among the stores transferred to a new owner if the Kroger-Albertson’s merger is approved. (Photo by Bob Bong)

Comings & Goings: Palos Jewel, Oak Lawn Mariano’s to be sold in merger deal

By Bob Bong Kroger and Albertson’s this week released the list of stores the companies plan to sell, should a merger between the grocery giants be approved by regulators. Jewel Food Stores in Alsip and Palos Heights are among the stores listed for sale as well as Mariano’s locations in Oak Lawn, Orland Park, and Frankfort. The…

Alan Morales

LeaderShop director faces more charges from former staffers

From staff reports The LaGrange-based LeaderShop, a social service agency that recently lost $300,000 in funding, is facing new charges of a toxic work environment, bullying, and inappropriate behavior by Executive Director Alan Morales. Since the story was first published in the Desplaines Valley News on June 24, at least six women have documented their…

Lyons Mayor Christopher Getty presents a copy of the proclamation honoring the Lyons Mustangs Athletic Club for 100 years to President Gary Benedik. (Photos by Steve Metsch)

Lyons Mustangs honored for 100 years of service

By Steve Metsch It’s not often a service organization hits 100 years. But there are not many service organizations like the Lyons Mustangs Athletic Club. “We don’t know of any other organization anywhere around here, maybe in the city of Chicago, but maybe around here that has made it 100 years. It’s quite a feat.…

Eddie Korosa will perform again at this year's Music in the Park series of concerts in Lyons. (file photo)

Lyons’ Music in the Park series starts July 10

By Steve Metsch The popular Music in the Park series will begin a six-week run on July 10 at Veterans Park in Lyons. Bands will perform from 6 to 9 p.m. each Wednesday through Aug. 14, said Ted Tale, director of parks and recreation for the village. Each night will “feature a vendor with food…

mccook police star

McCook settles with former police officer

By Steve Metsch More than eight months after the process began, the village of McCook has reached a settlement with former police officer John Kosmowski Jr. “This will end this case for once and for all. Gets it out of our hair even though I don’t have hair,” Mayor Terrance Carr quipped during the McCook…

countryside police

Countryside police seek grants for tasers and solar-powered cameras

By Steve Metsch The Countryside Police Department is applying for two grants that are intended to help improve safety. Police Chief Paul Klimek told the city council at its June 12 meeting that he is seeking a grant from the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority for tasers. “The state is going to award tasers to…

Illinois News

Pritzker calls SCOTUS emergency abortion ruling ‘small respite’ as state protections await his signature

Pritzker calls SCOTUS emergency abortion ruling ‘small respite’ as state protections await his signature

By ANDREW ADAMS  Capitol News Illinois aadams@capitolnewsillinois.com Abortion remains legal as an emergency medical procedure in Idaho, for now, after a Thursday U.S. Supreme Court ruling, while a bill that would cement those protections in Illinois law awaits Gov. JB Pritzker’s signature.  The 6-3 decision saw the three liberal justices concur with the order. Three…

Pritzker signs election bill to increase party power in primary elections

Pritzker signs election bill to increase party power in primary elections

By ANDREW ADAMS  Capitol News Illinois aadams@capitolnewsillinois.com Changes to primary election fundraising, the electoral college and the state’s voter registration database are now law after Gov. JB Pritzker signed a wide-ranging bill on Monday. The legislation, containing several unrelated election measures, passed near the end of the legislature’s spring session on a vote of 68-38 in…

National Committeeman Richard Porter looks ahead to GOP convention as party names new state chair

National Committeeman Richard Porter looks ahead to GOP convention as party names new state chair

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois phancock@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – Republicans will gather in Milwaukee next week for what promises to be a historic national convention. Former President Donald Trump will be nominated for the third consecutive time as the party’s presidential nominee, the first major party candidate to win nomination that many times since Franklin…

Speaker Welch rebuffs lawsuit from would-be staff union as ‘forum shopping’

Speaker Welch rebuffs lawsuit from would-be staff union as ‘forum shopping’

By HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois hmeisel@capitolnewsillinois.com Illinois House Speaker Emanuel “Chris” Welch is urging a Cook County judge to dismiss a lawsuit members of his staff filed against him last month seeking to force recognition of their union. In a new filing Monday, attorneys for Welch argued the Illinois Legislative Staff Association has no…

The U.N. calls restraint chairs torture. Illinois jails use them every day.

The U.N. calls restraint chairs torture. Illinois jails use them every day.

by GRACE HAUCK ILLINOIS ANSWERS PROJECT Warning: The following article includes mentions of self-harm and profanity. This is the first in a series of stories. McHENRY, Ill. – Vernon L. Brooks Jr. was distraught. Forced into a chair in a jail cell with a black mesh hood over his head, he panicked as he felt…

Pritzker signs health insurance reform measures

Pritzker signs health insurance reform measures

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois phancock@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – Gov. JB Pritzker signed legislation Wednesday that puts new controls on the state’s health insurance industry, including bans on certain practices companies have used to reduce costs by controlling the amount of health care services a patient receives. The Health Care Protection Act, House Bill 5395,…

Transit heads again ask state for funding help, reject proposals for oversight reform

Transit heads again ask state for funding help, reject proposals for oversight reform

By ANDREW ADAMS Capitol News Illinois aadams@capitolnewsillinois.com CHICAGO – It was standing room only in a downtown Chicago committee hearing Tuesday as activists, transit experts and lobbyists hung on the words of the region’s transit agency chiefs.  Public transit has become an increasingly contentious issue in Chicagoland as the Regional Transportation Authority – the funding…

SCOTUS ruling could upend federal corruption cases for Madigan, allies

SCOTUS ruling could upend federal corruption cases for Madigan, allies

By HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois hmeisel@capitolnewsillinois.com The U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday narrowed the scope of a federal bribery law prosecutors have relied on in their cases against former Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan and several of his allies convicted of bribing him. A jury last spring found those allies – former lobbyists and…

Former GOP state lawmaker, candidate for governor sentenced to 42 months in prison

Former GOP state lawmaker, candidate for governor sentenced to 42 months in prison

By HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois hmeisel@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – Former Republican State Sen. Sam McCann on Tuesday was sentenced to 42 months in federal prison for stealing nearly $700,000 in campaign funds and attempting to conceal his theft with false reports to state election authorities. In February, McCann pleaded guilty to seven counts of wire…

Menard prison staff picket, citing unsafe working conditions

Menard prison staff picket, citing unsafe working conditions

By MOLLY PARKER Capitol News Illinois   mparker@capitolnewsillinois.com Hundreds of Menard Correctional Center employees and their supporters staged a rally alongside a busy street in Chester on Monday, highlighting what they described as perilous working conditions at the state’s largest maximum-security prison.   The problems at the southern Illinois facility stem from low staffing levels, said…