Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Proposed School District Efficiency Commission Illinois House Bill 3053

Proposed School District Efficiency Commission Illinois House Bill 3053

Proposed School District Efficiency Commission Illinois House Bill 3053, Metamora Herald

House Bill 3053 is moving towards the governor's desk. Here is what Illinois Policy wrote last year:
Illinois has the most units of local government of any state in the country. Many of its nearly 7,000 units of local government are overlapping, duplicative and contribute to Illinois’ growing debt, waste and corruption. These local units of government are also responsible for Illinois’ growing property taxes, which already rank as the third-highest in the country. Many of the state’s local governments could be consolidated – which would help to reduce their negative effects.
Among the key candidates for consolidation are the state’s 859 local school districts, which consume nearly two-thirds of the $27 billion in local property taxes that local governments across Illinois collect each year. Illinois has the fifth-largest number of school districts in the nation.
Nearly 25 percent of Illinois school districts serve just one school, and over one-third of all school districts have fewer than 600 students. An additional layer of administration for these districts is inefficient.
Now, House Bill 3053 waits in the state legislature. From the Illinois General Assembly website:
Synopsis As IntroducedAmends the School Code. Creates the School District Efficiency Commission. Provides for the membership and support of the Commission. Requires the Commission to make recommendations to the Governor and the General Assembly on the number of school districts in this State, the optimal amount of enrollment for a school district, and where reorganization and realignment of school districts would be beneficial in this State; specifies the topics on which the recommendations must focus. Provides that, on or before May 1, 2020, the Commission must vote on its recommendations and submit a report to the Governor and the General Assembly. Provides that if the Commission adopts the report recommendations by an affirmative vote of at least 11 of its members, then the Commission's recommendations for reorganization of school districts into unit school districts must be placed on the ballots of the designated school districts in the next general election in the same manner as petitions approved by a regional superintendent of schools, except without financial incentives. Provides that the Commission is dissolved the day after the report is filed with the Governor and the General Assembly. Repeals the provision on February 1, 2021. Makes a conforming change in the Conversion and Formation of School Districts Article. Effective immediately.
Illinois Policy concludes: 

 Rather than punish Illinois residents with more tax hikes, the state and local governments must pursue reforms including pension reform and school district consolidations. Local taxpayers shouldn’t be on the hook for multiple layers of government that duplicate services, waste taxpayers’ money, increase government debt, and decrease transparency.
The numbers speak for themselves: More than 60 percent of local property taxes in Illinois go toward school funding. And with the large number of districts in Illinois ripe for consolidation, the financial benefit cannot be ignored. A reduction of school districts by half could lead to operating savings of nearly $130 million to $170 million annually and could conservatively save the state $3 billion to $4 billion in pension costs over the next 30 years.
The state also has a stake in consolidating school districts. Illinois government is a large and sometimes the largest, provider of school funds for many Illinois school districts and is responsible for paying for school district pensions. By virtue of its responsibility to taxpayers, it has the duty to identify waste and propose efficiencies.
The benefits of consolidation would go beyond saving taxpayers money. District consolidation can have a positive effect on student outcomes and would increase transparency as well.
Considered carefully and implemented properly, school district consolidation can provide important benefits to Illinois taxpayers, local school districts and Illinois students.

Monday, May 20, 2019

Germantown Hills Educational Foundation 23rd Annual Golf Outing

Germantown Hills Educational Foundation 23rd Annual Golf Outing


Time: 12:00PM Noon Tee Time at Metamora Fields Golf ClubPlease arrive by 10:00AM (Scramble Format)

Cost: $125 per player (includes lunch, greens fees, card, gift, prizes, beverages, and dinner)

Benefits: Fun, friends, food, skill, raffles, luck, prizes... proceeds to enhance the education of GHSD #69 students.

Registration forms here.

Saturday, May 18, 2019

Opinion: Is It Really Pro-Life?

Opinion: Is It Really Pro-Life?

Abortion is a word with a profoundly negative connotation. While people who claim to be Pro-Life would state that at the core, abortion is murder, perhaps once they take a more in-depth look, they might realize terminating the unwanted pregnancy is more humane. Maybe a young woman wants an abortion because she cannot afford to raise a child. Perhaps a woman was raped, and maybe she is underage and knows that as a child, she is not mature enough to raise another child. Of course, any of these women could give her baby up for adoption, and that is an excellent suggestion! But first, consider the kind of life that child will live growing up in the foster care system. It is a well known and disappointing fact that there are not enough good foster homes and many children, especially young girls in foster care, are abused by their caregivers. If this unwanted child also grows up in a low-income area, they will likely lack a great education which will keep them poor. People who live in poverty are more likely to take on illegal jobs that pay more than minimum wages, such as prostitution or selling drugs. If you are adamantly Pro-Life and believe that there are plenty of great homes, then you need to step up and open your home to the unwanted children of America.
If you find it odd that I have said you should be expected to take care of a child you do not want or cannot afford to take care of, then maybe you need to reconsider what your reasons are for being Pro-Life.
No matter what your own personal belief is, at the end of the day, it must be recognized that making abortion illegal is not a case of caring about human rights. To make abortion illegal is a way to control women, make them act as hosts for babies, and strip them of the right to make choices for themselves. 

Germantown Hills Resident is Recognized for Student Leadership and Scholarship at Bradley Univesity

Germantown Hills Resident is Recognized for Student Leadership and Scholarship at Bradley Univesity

Germantown Hills Resident is Recognized for Student Leadership and Scholarship at Bradley Univesity, Metamora Herald

PEORIA, IL (05/16/2019)-- The Slane College of Communications and Fine Arts announced the remainder of its Spring Semester 2019 Awards for outstanding students at Bradley University. (Department of Art students were previously announced).
Aria Cramer of Germantown Hills (61548) received the Bradley Concerto/Aria Competition Award Winners and Presser Scholar 2018-2019 award. Cramer is a class of Senior Music Education major at Bradley.
Bradley University is a top-ranked, private university in Peoria, Illinois, offering 5,400 undergraduate and graduate students the resources of a larger university and the personal attention of a smaller university. More than 185 academic programs are offered in business, communications, education, engineering, fine arts, health sciences, liberal arts and sciences, and technology.

Thursday, May 16, 2019

 Kenzie Gramm Named to Southeast's Spring 2019 Dean's List

Kenzie Gramm Named to Southeast's Spring 2019 Dean's List

CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (05/16/2019)-- Kenzie Gramm of Metamora, IL, has been named to the Southeast Missouri State University Dean's List for academic achievement during the spring 2019 semester.
Students named to the list earned at least a 3.75-grade point average on a 4.0 scale, completed at least 12 hours of standard graded credit, achieved no grade below a B and received no failing grades in enrolled courses, including credit/no credit or pass/fail courses
Police Week 2019

Police Week 2019

Police Week 2019, Metamora Herald

It's police week and Chief Rebman has some thoughts about keeping our Peace Officers safe while they work to make sure the public is safe.

  •  Remember Scott's Law.  Citizens should remember to move to the opposite lane of traffic when approaching ANY emergency vehicle that is stopped.  This also included roadside safety vehicles such as tow trucks as well. 
  • Driver's and passengers should remain in their vehicles on a traffic stop unless the officer advises them otherwise.  This is not only safer for the officer but to those inside the vehicle as well. 
  • Although I am a strong supporter of the 2nd Amendment and encourage concealed carry, I want to remind those who chose to carry that if an interaction is made with the police to simply let them know you are presently carrying.  It's just nice to know if the people we are dealing with are armed or not. 

Police Week is from May 12 to May 18. 

In 1962, President John F. Kennedy signed a proclamation which designated May 15 as Peace Officers Memorial Day and the week in which that date falls as Police Week. Currently, tens of thousands of law enforcement officers from around the world converge on Washington, DC to participate in a number of planned events which honor those that have paid the ultimate sacrifice.
The Memorial Service began in 1982 as a gathering in Senate Park of approximately 120 survivors and supporters of law enforcement. Decades later, the event, more commonly known as National Police Week, has grown to a series of events which attracts thousands of survivors and law enforcement officers to our Nation's Capital each year.
The National Peace Officers Memorial Service, which is sponsored by the Grand Lodge of the Fraternal Order of Police, is one in a series of events which includes the Candlelight Vigil, which is sponsored by the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund (NLEOMF) and seminars sponsored by Concerns of Police Survivors (C.O.P.S.)
National Police Week draws in between 25,000 to 40,000 attendees. The attendees come from departments throughout the United States as well as from agencies throughout the world. This provides a unique opportunity to meet others who work in law enforcement. In that spirit, the Fraternal Order of Police DC Lodge #1 sponsors receptions each afternoon and evening during Police Week. These events are open to all law enforcement personnel and are an experience unlike any other.

Ford Brothers Putting out Excellent Grub at Hanover's

Ford Brothers Putting out Excellent Grub at Hanover's

Ford Brothers Putting out Excellent Grub at Hanover's, Metamora Herald

Have you tried the food at Hanover's yet? A few months ago they moved to a new location, and I haven't been able to stop in and eat until this week. If you have not been able to stop in, be sure to check out their delicious menu soon.

The daily special was $1 tacos, so we started with a few of these. Tasty meat with cheese, lettuce, and tomatoes served with salsa and sour cream. It was good. What do you want for a buck, ya know? Can't go wrong for a tasty lunch at a fair price.

We at the Metamora Herald are burger fans, to say the least. The Black & Bleu caught our eye with it's blacked seasoning, bacon, and bleu cheese. In my opinion, every element of the sammidge is vital, and this burger had it all! Excellent juicy burger cooked to perfection, gooey cheese, and of course the pièce de ré·sis·tance bacon on top. Even the bun was delicious, debatably one of the most import aspects of the burger to aficionados everywhere.

Hanover's french fries are the stuff dreams are made of. Crispy on the outside, and soft in the middle. I inquired of co-owner Eric Ford about the preparation of these excellent fried delectables but was denied the secret techniques. "You'll have to Google it!" was his only advice. 

By the by, if you wondered where the phone booth went that had been across from the drug store it is inside Hanover's! Still no service though.

Bottom line: great food at great prices and a friendly atmosphere.