Peoria County news briefs

Judge Jodi Hoos


 LWV to discuss five-year plan for HUD Funds

The Greater Peoria League of Women Voters will discuss the City of Peoria Five-Year Plan for HUD Funds at its Drinks and Dialogue event, 5:30 – 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 21 at the Lariat Steakhouse, 2232 W. Glen Ave., Peoria.

The event is free and the public is invited.  Refreshments are available for purchase.  Social time is from 5 to 5:30 pm.

Kathryn Murphy, grants manager with the City of Peoria Planning Department, will present an overview of the plan and is soliciting input from the community. Neighborhoods are the cornerstone to vibrant, livable communities, and each year the City of Peoria receives federal entitlement funding from the United States Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to invest in our community.

The public is invited to join the discussion, give input on use of HUD funding and learn how the Grants Management Division strives to meet the needs of Peoria’s citizens and improve the quality of life in our neighborhoods.

The League is a non-partisan issues oriented, volunteer, member directed organization committed to open, responsive and effective government brought about by informed, involved citizens with membership open to both men and women in Peoria, Tazewell, and Woodford counties.  For more information, go to

 Middle School STEM Saturday’s return to Bradley U.

DAPCEP – a free Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) program for Peoria Public School fifth-through eighth-grade students, will run Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., Sept. 7 through Oct. 5 on the Bradley University campus.

This is the third year the Detroit Area Pre-College Engineering Program (DAPCEP) has brought its STEM program to Bradley University, the only DACPCEP program offered outside Michigan.

Register online today at


New state’s attorney named

Peoria County Board Chairman Andrew A. Rand has appointed Judge Jodi Hoos to be the new Peoria County state’s attorney, succeeding Jerry Brady, who passed away in who died June 13.

Rand made the announcement on Aug. 5.

Hoos previously served as a Peoria County assistant state’s attorney and is now the first female state’s attorney for the county.

Board members are set to confirm her appointment at a 4:30 p.m. meeting Tuesday.

She is a judge in the 10th judicial circuit in Peoria County. She was sworn into office in 2014 and was re-elected in November 2016.

County Board members confirmed Hoos’ appointment at a special meeting of the County Board on Aug. 6.

 Construction on Dirksen Parkway underway

On Aug. 5, road crews began working on the Dirksen Parkway.

Traffic will be shifted during the project but two-way traffic will be maintained.

Two-way traffic will be maintained for Johanson Road, Bosch Road, and Edward Road. Residences along Dirksen Parkway between Johanson Road and Middle Road will have access via a temporary gravel access road.

Additionally, the Middle Road detour will continue to remain in place at this time.

Major roadwork on this project is required to be completed by Dec. 6. Project updates continue to be posted at


Free family activities highlight Illinois’ outdoors

Visitors to the Illinois State Fair can take an easy hike and sample Illinois’ great outdoors with a stop at Conservation World on the Illinois State Fairgrounds, Aug. 9-18 in Springfield.
“There are so many wonderful things for families to do outdoors in Illinois, and we’re providing them with some samples at Conservation World at the Illinois State Fair,” said Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) Director Colleen Callahan.  “From our state parks to great trail hikes, to fishing and hunting opportunities, and improving wildlife habitat in your own backyard, a visit to Conservation World can help your family plan a great outdoors adventure.”
Conservation World is a 30-acre venue on the northwest corner of the Illinois State Fairgrounds with park benches, ponds, grass, and shade trees adjacent to the IDNR headquarters.

Some of the events and attractions:

  • The famous “Paul Bunyan Lumberjack Show” has performances every day Aug. 9-18:  Monday – Thursday at 12 p.m., 3 p.m., 6 p.m., and Friday – Sunday at 12 p.m., 2 p.m., 4 p.m., 6 p.m.
  • Voyageur canoe rides on the Conservation World pond, Aug. 9-11 and Aug. 16-18 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
  • Kids fishing opportunities include hands-on fishing clinics at the pond inside the Conservation World gate five times each day, with all bait and tackle provided, at 10:30 a.m., 12 p.m., 1:30 p.m., 3 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. Kids aged 10 and younger also can sign up at the Fisheries Tent and participate in free bowfishing daily at 11 a.m., 2 p.m., and 4 p.m.
  • Fly fishing demonstrations for anglers of all ages are scheduled for Aug. 9-11 and Aug. 16-18 at 11 a.m., 1:30 p.m., and 4:30 p.m.  Sporting retrieving dog demonstrations are planned at the Conservation World pond for Aug. 9 at 2:30 p.m. and Aug. 10-11 at 12:30 p.m. and 4:30 p.m., courtesy of Green Acres Sportsmen’s Club.
  • Youth Archery and BB Gun hands-on instruction is available daily at the Conservation World youth practice ranges, hosted by shooting sports experts and safety education instructors and volunteers.
  • Fishing opportunities abound in Illinois, and some of the state’s best sport fish will be on display in the Fisheries Tent in a 2,800-gallon aquarium, providing visitors a chance to see some keepers up-close.
  • Smokey Bear is celebrating his 75th birthday and is scheduled to visit Conservation World daily. IDNR Forest Resources specialists will promote forest health, tree care and forest protection at Conservation World. Additionally, IDNR’s Mason State Nursery will be selling native plants and pollinator seed mix.

IDNR wildlife and natural heritage staffs will host displays and answer questions about hunting prospects, wildlife watching, helping threatened and endangered species, and habitat enhancement projects.

Gov. Pritzker signs law improving kennel safety

Governor J.B. Pritzker signed a new law today to ensure that dogs or cats that are placed in a kennel are safe at all times.
“This commonsense law will protect pets from senseless tragedies and further our state’s commitment to animal welfare,” said Governor J.B. Pritzker. “We’re putting safety first and making sure the tragedy that West Chicago experienced in January will never happen again.”
The new law, which takes effect immediately, requires kennels to either be staffed at all times or install a fire alarm or sprinkler system in every building where animals are housed that notifies local fire departments. House Bill 3390 was introduced and passed after the tragic death of 31 dogs in a West Chicago kennel fire in January 2019. Fire investigators say there were working smoke detectors but likely no one there to hear them.