Central IL Farmer, Grain Co. Manager to be Tried for Fraud

PEORIA, Ill. (AP) — A central Illinois farmer and a former grain company manager will be tried in federal court in June on charges they organized a $14 million fraud scheme.  

Farmer Robert Printz of Fairbury and former Towanda Grain Co. manager Timothy Boerma of Lincoln are scheduled to be tried June 17 in federal court in Peoria. Court records show that Printz is charged with mail and wire fraud and money laundering. Continue Reading

Aurora, IL Teen Arrested by FBI for Terrorist Ties

CHICAGO (AP) — The FBI has arrested an 18-year-old suburban Chicago man who U.S. authorities say was planning join an al-Qaida-affiliated group operating in Syria. The FBI says Abdella Ahmad Tounisi of Aurora was arrested Friday night as he tried to board a flight from Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport to Turkey. Tounisi, a U.S. citizen, is charged with one count of attempting to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization. According to the criminal complaint, Tounisi carried out research online about Jabhat al-Nusrah, or Nursa Front. Nusra Front is the most effective rebel faction fighting Syrian President Bashar Assad’s regime. Continue Reading

Storm woes range from sinkhole to snow to twisters

Nature is throwing all it has at Middle America, from snow in the north to tornadoes in the Plains, and enough rain in Chicago to cause a sinkhole that swallowed cars. National Weather Service watches and warnings are in place across the region Thursday. Up to a foot of snow is forecast for parts of Minnesota and the Dakotas. Downpours are causing rivers to bust their banks in Missouri, Iowa and Illinois. Tornadoes caused scattered damage in Oklahoma. Continue Reading

You Have Until Midnight and Then Its in the IRS’ Hands

Today (Monday) is the deadline for filing your federal income tax returns. I-R-S spokesman, Christopher Miller, says they’re expecting many people to file at the deadline based on the nationwide numbers thus far. If you are filing your return today, Miller says simple things often cause problems — like transposed numbers or letters.  He says any mix up in the names and numbers will slow down the processing of your return. Miller says it’s especially important to write in the correct information on paper returns. There are still many people who choose to file paper instead of electronic returns. Continue Reading

Fifth Time the Charm for American Crystal Sugar Workers

MOORHEAD, Minn. (AP) — Union members who have been locked out of American Crystal Sugar plants in Minnesota, Iowa and North Dakota for 20 months are heading back to work. Just enough members changed their vote over the weekend to ratify the same contract they had rejected four times before. The union last voted in December when 55 percent of members voted to reject the company’s offer. This time, 55 percent agreed to the offer. Continue Reading

Former President Hosting Student Leaders Conference in St. Louis

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Former President Bill Clinton is hosting more than 1,000 college student leaders from across the nation and abroad this weekend at Washington University in St. Louis. The Clinton Global Initiative University is an outgrowth of the former president’s philanthropic foundation. Featured speakers are to include Chelsea Clinton, the ex-president’s daughter: television host Stephen Colbert; actress Jada Pinkett Smith; and Twitter creator Jack Dorsey, a St. Continue Reading

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Branstad’s Plan for Low-Income Health Care Now in Bill Form

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — More details are available on Republican Governor Terry Branstad’s health proposal for low-income residents. Legislation for Branstad’s Healthy Iowa proposal came out Thursday. The plan would cover an estimated 89,000 residents with incomes below the poverty line. According to the bill, participants would have access to a primary care doctor within 30 minutes or 30 miles of their home. Branstad has proposed this plan because he opposes the Medicaid expansion permitted under President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul. Continue Reading