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WEATHER ALERT: Severe storms expected late this afternoon and evening

Central Illinois Headlines – April 19, 2024

Storms cause damage in central Illinois

Clean-up is underway after severe storms caused damage in parts of Central Illinois on Thursday night. The National Weather Service in Central Illinois issued Tornado Warnings in Lawrence, Effingham, Jasper, and Macon Counties.

The Illinois State Police reported property damage along I-72 in Macon County. WCIA-TV reports it was farm equipment. In Latham, the emergency manager for Logan County reported that storms left three power poles leaning near the intersection of Route 121 and 1842nd Avenue. So far, no injuries are reported. – Reginald Hardwick/IPM News

Governor helps open center that turns insect larvae into animal food

DECATUR – A new facility that raises fly larvae for animal feed has been built in Decatur. Governor JB Pritzker cut the ribbon on Thursday for the Insect Innovation Center, built by InnovaFeed. Pritzker said the French company is working with Archer Daniels Midland to refine methods of raising Black Soldier Fly larvae to make oil and protein powder used in food for dogs and other animals.

“By using an agricultural byproduct to breed insects to turn into animal feed, we can feed the world of tomorrow. And now, that revolutionary idea has crossed the Atlantic Ocean, and made a new home here in central Illinois,” said Pritzker.

InnovaFeed says the Insect Innovation Center will be joined by a much larger manufacturing plant in the next couple of years. The company says they have no plans to use the plant to make food ingredients for human consumption. – Jim Meadows/IPM News

Christie Clinic Marathon still needs volunteers

CHAMPAIGN – Organizers of the Christie Clinic Illinois Race Weekend are looking for more than 40 course volunteers. They need people who can help with the 10K, half marathon, and full marathon events on Saturday, April 27. Click here for more information. – Reginald Hardwick/IPM News

Madison County voters will take up symbolic secession vote in November

The Madison County Board voted 15-7 on Wednesday to send a symbolic question to voters in November about forming a new state separate from the Chicago area. The secession vote, which carries no true power, could make Madison County in the Metro East the 27th in downstate Illinois to take the action.

The nonbinding advisory referendum will ask voters if Madison County should separate from Cook County, home to Chicago. It asks if the county board should communicate with other downstate county boards regarding forming a new state.

Wednesday’s approval from the Republican-dominated county board provides a win for the Illinois Separation Referendum — the group behind secession. It largely objects to Illinois’ progressive statewide politics driven by Chicago and some of its suburbs. – Will Bauer/St. Louis Public Radio

Picture of Reginald Hardwick

Reginald Hardwick

Reginald Hardwick is the News & Public Affairs Director for the Illinois Newsroom. He started at WILL in October of 2019 after serving as News Director for WKAR in East Lansing, Michigan. Previously, he was a news producer and manager at the NBC station in Dallas, where he won 7 Emmy awards. Born in Vietnam, Reginald is a graduate of the University of Northern Colorado. Email: rh14@illinois.edu Twitter: @RNewsWILL

More Stories From Illinois Public Media

Urbana Mayor Marlin confirms she won’t seek third term

Democrat Diane Marlin is confirming what she has been talking about for more than a year: she’ll step down as Urbana mayor when her current term ends next spring.

“After 8 years on City Council and 8 years as mayor, 16 in city government, is a good long run,” Marlin said in an interview with Illinois Public Media.