>>Girl Still Missing From Watson
(Watson, IL) -- There’s still no sign of Willow Long, the seven-year-old Watson girl who disappeared Sunday. She apparently walked away from home on her own, while her mom was napping. Long is about four-feet-tall and weighs 46 pounds, with shoulder length red hair. Police don’t suspect any foul play at this point and they haven’t issued an Amber Alert.
>>New Casino In Works For Davenport
(Davenport, IA) -- Jumer’s Casino in Rock Island could be getting a bit of competition close to home. A new, 250-million-dollar land based casino could be coming right across the border to Davenport, Iowa. It would sit right at the intersection of Interstates 80 and 74 and would include a hotel and several other businesses on the grounds. That could strip revenues from Jumer’s, which pulled in about 88-million-dollars last year. Developers will be in Davenport today to discuss the idea.
>>Round The Clock Gambling In Illinois
(Chicago, IL) -- Casino operators in Illinois want to stay open around-the-clock. Right now the casinos are required to shut down for two-hours a day but that’s not the case at truck stops, where patrons can use video gambling machines all day and all night. The state’s Gaming Association has asked the gaming board for permission to extend their hours. The proposal will come up for discussion at a meeting scheduled September 19th.
>>Lawmaker Stepping Down
(Charleston, IL) -- Charleston State Rep Brad Halbrook is stepping aside. He tells the “Journal Gazette and Times-Courier” that he won’t seek re-election next year because he wants to spend more time with his family. His announcement came just days after he found out he’d face a primary challenge against Coles County Sheriff Darrell Cox, but Halbrook says that didn’t play into his decision. Halbrook has served one term in the Illinois House.
>>Republican To Join Legislative Black Caucus
(Springfield, IL) -- The legislative Black caucus will have a new voice at the table soon. Chairman Ken Dunkin has invited John Anthony to be part of the caucus. Anthony is a Republican who’s been on the job for just a few weeks now. He says he’s grateful for the invitation and looks forward to offering a fresh perspective to the group. Anthony says the key to crafting good policy is finding balance from both sides of the aisle.
>>Rattlesnake Found In Greene County
(Greene County, IL) -- A four-foot-long timber rattlesnake has been discovered near Carrollton in Greene County. It’s an unusual find because rattlers don’t usually come that far inland in Illinois. They usually stay along the Illinois and Mississippi Rivers. Some believe it’s an indication that the snakes are expanding their territory but experts say there’s no possibility of that. They says the summer’s dry weather may have forced the snake into unfamiliar territory to search for food.
>>Some Schools To Close Today Because Of Heat
(Chicago, IL) -- Some Illinois schools will be closed today over fears classrooms will be too hot to study. Twenty schools in Naperville will close because the buildings lack air conditioning. Closures will affect some schools in Indian Prairie District 204 and School District 129 in West Aurora. Temperatures are expected to remain in the mid-90s through midweek.
>>Casinos Want To Stay Open 24 Hours
(Undated) -- Illinois' casinos are looking at a proposal that would allow them to stay open for business 24 hours a day. Presently Illinois casinos are allowed to keep their doors open for only 22 hours each day. Those who support the plan say it would even the playing field after Illinois lawmakers recently legalized round-the-clock video gambling at truck stops. Illinois' Gaming Commission will hear arguments on the matter next week.
>>Du Quoin Man Wins 4M Playing IL Lottery
(Du Quoin, IL) -- The Illinois Lottery's made a Du Quoin man the state's newest millionaire. Don Bytnar won four-million dollars playing the 20-dollar Instant Lottery on September 3rd. He purchased the winning Gold Bullion ticket at the Farm Fresh in Du Quoin. Five-years-ago Bytnar won 100-thousand-dollars playing the Illinois Lottery.
>>IL Gas Prices Drop
(Undated) -- Gas prices in Illinois are going down. Triple-A says the price of a gallon of regular gas dropped in August to three-70. That's 14-cents cheaper than July's average price and down 33-cents from a year ago.