Snow and Freezing Rain to Impact Travel in Illinois
IDOT Crews Prepared to Battle Winter Weather this Weekend
SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) announced today that a winter storm is expected to produce measurable snowfall and freezing rain in parts of Illinois tonight and Saturday, creating the possibility of hazardous travel conditions.
Motorists should expect slick roadways and be cautious when driving. Travel times are likely to be delayed, so motorists are encouraged to plan ahead, and allow plenty of extra time to travel. For statewide road conditions visit www.gettingaroundillinois.com.
“Our crews are prepared for this latest round of winter weather and will be working hard to clear the roads,” said Acting Illinois Transportation Secretary Randy Blankenhorn. “Motorists can help us by driving only if it is necessary during winter storms and taking it slow on the roads.”
The National Weather Service expects the heaviest snowfall (4-6 inches forecast in some areas) to occur in the central part of the state, with freezing rain and accumulating ice likely in the southern part of the state. Icy conditions can create extremely dangerous driving conditions.
IDOT crews pretreated bridges, overpasses, and ramps all day Friday – these are most susceptible to icing. IDOT will have more than 1,700 trucks and 3,700 employees available statewide to battle the winter storm.
If you have to drive in a winter storm, don't crowd the plow. Give plow crews plenty of room to work – you might see them, but the plow drivers might not see you.
Illinois State Police ask motorists to drive at a safe speed, allow plenty of braking room and increase following distance, make sure your vehicle lights are functioning properly, move over for emergency vehicles that may be stopped to assist stranded motorists, and exit the road to a safe location if driving conditions become too hazardous.
“Illinois State Police are advising drivers to monitor weather conditions and to take the necessary steps to ensure their safety before heading out on potentially dangerous snow and ice covered roadways,” said ISP Operations Colonel Mike Zerbonia. ‘Drivers should reduce speeds, increase distances between vehicles and avoid sudden lane changes. Unless medical attention is required, drivers involved in crashes should exchange information to keep roads clear and avoid secondary collisions,” he added.
The Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) encourages travelers to have a vehicle emergency kit that includes water, snack foods, flashlight, blanket, extra warm clothing, sand or kitty litter, shovel, windshield scraper with brush, and booster cables. More winter weather survival tips are available at www.Ready.Illinois.gov.
Winter driving tips to remember:
Department of Military Affairs Accountant Wins
$2.5 million from Illinois Lottery
SPRINGFIELD, IL (02/17/2015)(readMedia)-- David Brown of Springfield, Ill., an advanced accountant with the Illinois Department of Military Affairs and his daughter, Laurie, won $2.5 million after she bought them a $10 instant lottery ticket on Feb 5.
Mike Lang with the Illinois Lottery presented the Browns with an oversized ceremonial check today at Camp Lincoln, where they were surrounded by well-wishers from the Illinois Department of Military Affairs and the Illinois National Guard.
Brown and his daughter will split the Lottery prize, which they won playing the Lottery's '$2,500,000 Jackpot' instant game. Brown and Laurie have consistently played the lottery for the past 10 years, occasionally winning large prizes.
"We have always believed we could win," said Brown. "After we won $10,000 last year we saw winning a larger prize as the next step." In claiming their latest prize, the father/daughter opted for a one-time payment of $1.5 million.
Brown, 80, served as a medical noncommissioned officer in the Tennessee National Guard in 1952 and then transferred to the Navy from 1952 to 1959. He has worked as an advanced accountant for 26 years at Camp Lincoln and has played a vital role in managing vouchers for Soldiers using the Illinois Military Family Relief Fund.
Brown said one of the instant games he has enjoyed playing is the Illinois Lottery's "Veterans Cash" game, because he knows the profits are going to veterans in need, something he holds dear in his daily work with service members in the Illinois National Guard.
Brown said that although he doesn't need to work, he plans to continue because he enjoys it. "I will work until I no longer want to work anymore," said Brown. "I really enjoy my job and the people I work with here at Camp Lincoln."
Brown said his daughter plans to continue working as well.
"We both plan to pay off our house, cars and then invest the rest of the money," said Brown. "I'm very happy my daughter will be set for life."
Brown said he plans to travel more often, and go see his favorite National Football League team, the New York Jets, play.
Manar Issues State of the State Response
SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) issued the following statement following the State of the State Address:
“Now is the time to improve and increase funding for our schools. The State Board of Education supports a $729 million increase; yesterday, sponsors of need-based funding reform – SB 1 – and I called for an additional $500 million and today I was glad to hear the governor promise more money for our schools in the coming fiscal year. This sets Illinois on a course for meaningful school funding reform.”
Mitchell responds to Rauner State of the State Address
Springfield... Governor Bruce Rauner delivered his first State of the State Address to a joint session of the Illinois General Assembly on Wednesday.
State Representative Bill Mitchell (R-Forsyth) applauded the Governor’s focus on job creation, property tax relief and improving education.
“Governor Rauner made it clear that he wants to partner with legislators on an agenda to reform Springfield and get Illinois working again,” Mitchell said. “I appreciated his focus on issues that I have supported for many years, such as increasing education funding, merging the offices of Comptroller and Treasurer, and hiring more prison guards to reduce overtime costs. I will strongly support helping working families here in Illinois.”
Representative Mitchell added that the State’s budget crisis will be dealt with in the Governor’s upcoming budget address and ongoing budget negotiations this spring.
“Certainly, my focus is on dealing with our fiscal crisis,” Mitchell said. “We have a $6 billion hole in the budget that will require some very difficult decisions to be made. Welfare spending is eating up our budget and I believe we have to pass strong welfare reforms to get that under control. And we have to cut wasteful spending. Get rid of the state planes, merge the Comptroller and Treasurer, and fund our shared priorities first. That’s how we’ll fix this mess.”
Forsyth, Illinois – January 26, 2015 – The 96-suite Residence Inn by Marriott in Forsyth, Illinois is scheduled to open Monday, February 2, 2015 and will feature the brand’s innovative, new design. Located at 230 Lucile Avenue, the all-suite Residence Inn Decatur Forsyth will operate as a Marriott franchise, owned and managed by Tharaldson Hospitality Management Company of Decatur, Illinois.
Located at the intersection of Highway 51 and Interstate 72, just a short drive from historic downtown Decatur and within walking distance to numerous restaurants, the Residence Inn Decatur Forsyth offers its guests convenient access to Hickory Point Mall, Scovill Zoo and Millikin University. Rates vary depending on length of stay.
“We are pleased to introduce Residence Inn hotels in the Forsyth area,” said Diane Mayer, vice president and global brand manager, Residence Inn. “When on the road for an extended period, our guests need space to spread out, maintain their life’s pace and restore their energy to help them maintain a healthy balance and routine while traveling. This new hotel offers them a seamless blend of modern style and functionality that allows them to settle in and thrive.”
Residence Inn properties are designed as all-suite hotels that offer studio, one-bedroom and two-bedroom suites. The contemporary suites are designed to enhance the comfort and lifestyle of travelers on the road today, offering guests flexible spaces and upgraded amenities to help maintain a healthy balance and routine while traveling. With a larger, expansive workspace, complimentary high-speed Internet access, and a multitude of easily accessible outlets, guests are able to work efficiently throughout the suites. Sectional sofas and luxurious bathrooms with extra storage space make it possible for travelers to live and rest comfortably. Contemporary and stylish décor, featuring natural light and refreshing colors, helps improve guests’ productivity and energy. Designed for stays of five nights or more, each suite also has a fully-equipped kitchen with a coffeemaker, microwave oven and residential-sized appliances.
The Residence Inn Decatur Forsyth’s complimentary breakfast has a variety of great options, including specially made featured items. Guests can start their day off right with healthy food choices and, with a convenient to-go offering, can make sure they do not miss the most important meal of the day.
Extending the feeling of comfortable living on the road, the Residence Inn Decatur Forsyth offers guests inviting and functional public spaces to relax or collaborate. Road warriors and families alike enjoy the hotel’s grocery delivery service, complimentary Wi-Fi, 24-hour onsite food and beverage market, dry cleaning services, and onsite guest laundry room. The hotel’s weeknight evening gatherings offer a casual, relaxing environment where guests can be as social as they want, while enjoying light fare. The hotel also maintains a business library where guests can fax, copy and print materials, and provides guests with a meeting room, an swimming pool, exercise room and Sport Court®.
With more than 650 all-suite properties in the United States, Canada, Europe, the Middle East and Central America, Residence Inn by Marriott is the leader in the extended-stay lodging segment. Designed for long stays, the brand offers spacious suites with separate living and sleeping areas. Fully functional kitchens, grocery delivery, 24-hour markets and complimentary breakfast help guests maintain a healthy balance while on the road. Complimentary Wi-Fi allows guests to stay connected to the home and office, while health and fitness options and inviting lobby spaces provide comfortable places to work and relax.
Residence Inn participates in the company’s award-winning Marriott Rewards® frequent travel program that allows members to earn hotel points or airline miles for every dollar spent during each stay. For more information or reservations, contact the Residence Inn Decatur Forsyth directly at 217-872-6600, call the Residence Inn toll-free number at 800-331-3131 or visit www.residenceinn.com. For travel tips, the latest on the brand or to connect with other travelers, “like” Residence Inn on Facebook: www.facebook.com/residenceinn and follow Residence Inn on Twitter: www.twitter.com/residenceinn.