Woodford County news briefs

Woodford County is looking to hire positions for work on the 2020 United States Census. (Photo courtesy of U.S. Census Bureau)


 Meetings set for regional Rural Matters initiative

Three public town hall style meetings will be held in January as part of a new Greater Peoria Rural Matters program.

The initiative is aimed at discussing challenges facing rural communities and small towns including town revitalization, industry, jobs, broadband, housing and natural resources.  The hope is to come up with projects that can be implemented across the region, in Peoria, Woodford and Tazewell counties to improve the quality of life.

Dates and times for the meetings this month are:

  • Wednesday, Jan. 15 from 4 to 7 p.m. at Devalan High School, 907 S. Locust St., Devalan
  • Thursday, Jan. 16 from 4 to 7 p.m. at the Brimfield American Legion, 121 W. Knoxville St.
  • Thursday, Jan. 30 from 4 to 7 p.m. at the performing arts center at Lincoln College, 300 Keokuk St.

For more information, go to www.bigtablegp.com or email at tdahlhoff@greaterpeoriadc.org.


January is National Radon Action Month

The Partnership for a Healthy Community is encouraging residents to test the radon level in their home. The best time to test for radon is during cold weather when windows and doors are closed. Radon is a radioactive gas that occurs naturally in most soil. As radon travels through the soil, it can easily move through small spaces in a foundation and enter a building, where it becomes trapped and accumulates in the air.

Most radon exposure occurs in the home, where people spend the most time. Radon has no taste, smell, or color. Testing is the only way to find out if there is a dangerous level of radon in your home.

When people breathe in radon, it damages the lungs, which can cause lung cancer. According to 907 the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer after cigarette smoking. Radon can be found throughout Illinois and levels can vary from one home to another, even in the same neighborhood.

Radon mitigation is the only effective way to reduce levels and decrease the risk of lung cancer. The most common radon reduction system involves the installation of a vent pipe and fan, which draws air from underneath a building and displaces it outside. The cost of a system varies depending on the reduction method chosen and building size.

According to current professional recommendations, households should test for radon every two years. Test kits can be purchased at Peoria City/County Health Department, Tazewell County Health Department and Woodford County Health Department.

Test kits can also be purchased at area hardware stores. For more detailed information about radon measurements and radon mitigation, visit www.radon.illinois.gov.

For more information regarding the Partnership for a Healthy Community, please visit www.healthyhoi.org, or “Like” Healthy HOI on Facebook.


County looking to hire workers for 2020 census

The 2020 Census is looking to hire temporary census positions offer the perfect opportunity to earn extra money while helping your community.

Most 2020 Census positions will last several weeks and feature competitive wages, weekly paychecks, flexible hours and paid training.

This page provides details about the positions and the qualifications you’ll need to apply.


To be eligible for a 2020 Census job, you must:

  • • Be at least 18 years old.
  • • Have a valid Social Security number.
  • • Be a U.S. citizen. *
  • • Have a valid email address.
  • • Complete an application and answer assessment questions. (Some application questions are available in Spanish. However, an English proficiency test may also be required.)
  • • Be able to speak, read, and write in English, if applying in the 50 states or Washington, D.C. (Bilingual applicants are needed and are encouraged to apply.)
  • • Be registered with the Selective Service System or have a qualifying exemption, if you are a male born after December 31, 1959.
  • • Undergo fingerprinting and pass a criminal background check and a review of criminal records performed by the Census Bureau.
  • • Commit to completing training.
  • • Be available to work flexible hours, which can include days, evenings, and weekends.

Most jobs require employees to:

  • Have a valid driver’s license and access to a vehicle, unless public transportation is readily available.
  • Have access to a computer with internet and an email account (to complete training).

If you are currently employed, your job must be compatible with Census Bureau employment and not create conflicts of interest. These will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Also, you must not engage in any partisan political activity while on duty.


Greater Peoria Marketing Innovation Meetup

Are you interested in the latest developments in marketing? Want to discuss trends and best practices in social media, content marketing, digital advertising, integrated marketing and more?

The January month meetup will discuss the current events in the marketing industry and share tips and insights to help us stay on top of it all.

The program will be held from 4 to 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 22 at the Industry Brewing, 8012 N. Hale Ave., Peoria.

This will also be a networking opportunity.


Arts Center to feature exhibit by local fiber artist
The McLean County Arts Center, 601 N. East St. in downtown Bloomington, presents Kathryn Leslie’s exhibition A Stitch in Time in the Sales Gallery from Jan. 10 through Feb.  14.. The free and public Artist Reception will be on Friday, Jan. 17, 5 – 7 PM.

Kathryn Leslie is a fiber artist based in Bloomington. She started making art as a teenager, mostly painting and sketching, then taught herself hand embroidery and cross stitch in the mid 2000s as an alternative creative outlet.

It was a more portable medium than painting, which was difficult with two small children, and learning the technique renewed her interest in making art.

Leslie has always loved history and pop culture, and this is obvious in her art. With just a piece of fabric, a hoop, a needle and thread, it’s possible to take a very old skill, and turn it into something new and exciting.

Most finished pieces are left in the embroidery hoop to further accentuate a blend of traditional and modern.

The McLean County Arts Center hours are Tuesday, 10 a.m. – 7 p.m., Wednesday – Friday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.; and Saturday, noon to 4 p.m. For more information, call 309-829-0011, like us on Facebook and Instagram, or visit our website: www.mcac.org. MCAC is supported in part by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council.


Pritzker releases applications for cannabis, craft grower licenses

The Illinois Department of Agriculture (IDOA) has opened the application process for Cannabis Infuser, Transporter and Craft Grower Licenses, including for social equity applicants. The applications are available on the Department’s website.

IDOA will begin accepting completed applications on Friday, February 14 and all Cannabis Infuser, Transporter and Craft Grower applications must be submitted by 5 p.m. on Monday, March 16.

Those who qualify as social equity applicants will receive additional points on their application and are eligible to receive technical assistance, grants, low-interest loans and fee reductions and waivers.

In coordination with the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, IDOA will be hosting informational workshops across the state to answer questions and assist applicants. Additional information about the timing and location of workshops will be available in the coming weeks.

“These craft grower, infuser and transporter licenses are vital to the success of Illinois’ emerging cannabis industry,” said Jeff Cox, Bureau Chief of Medicinal Plants at IDOA. “We will ensure each of these licenses is selected through a fair, unbiased and anonymous process.”

For 2020, IDOA may issue up to 40 Craft Grower licenses, 40 Infuser licenses and an unlimited number of Transporter licenses.

Licenses will be awarded to applicants by July 1.