News | WGLT


Nikita speaks into mic
Jeff Smudde / WGLT

After than less a year at the helm, Nikita Richards said Thursday she has resigned as chair of the McLean County Democratic Party.

police tape
WGLT file photo

A 23-year-old man told police he was shot Wednesday night in a road rage incident in far west Bloomington.

Dana Vollmer / WGLT

'Tis the season of giving and all around McLean County, nonprofits hope generosity is living.

Organizations that rely on community dollars say they've been fortunate throughout the pandemic—and hope that continues into the busiest time of year for fundraising: the holidays.

City Hall exterior
Ralph Weisheit / WGLT

Five additional bars and restaurants in Bloomington are accused of violating the state's COVID-19 ban on indoor service, city officials said Wednesday.

Unemployment insurance claims office
bytemarks / Creative Commons/Flickr

Unemployment in Bloomington-Normal fell for the sixth straight month in October, but data from the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) show thousands of jobs still haven’t returned since the pandemic began.

Doug Johnson
Laura Kennedy / WGLT

Art meets the retail experience at a venerable holiday event hosted by the McLean County Arts Center in Bloomington. 

A Hudson family is counting its blessings this year even though its Thanksgiving plans are still up in the air.

The Hoefler Family

In late October, Adam and Nia Hoefler of Normal and their two children got the news that we’ve all come to dread: the entire family had tested positive for COVID-19. But despite having the same virus, the Hoeflers each displayed very different symptoms.

Sign on grocery store freezer
Eric Stock / WGLT

McLean County health officials report a drop in COVID-19 hospitalizations and in the testing positivity rate as a holiday approaches that they fear will lead to more outbreaks.

Senate Committee Grills Veterans Affairs Officials On LaSalle Home Outbreak

Nov 24, 2020
Linda speaks

Members of the state Senate Veterans Affairs Committee had pointed questions for officials with the Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs about the agency’s response to an outbreak at the LaSalle Veterans’ Home that has resulted in at least 27 resident deaths from COVID-19-related complications.

Staff / WGLT / WGLT

The Town of Normal is using federal funds to launch a Small Business Relief Program that will offer companies with 50 or fewer full-time employees up to $15,000 in grants.

The town has received $450,000 from the Local CURE Economic Support program that uses federal dollars allocated to Illinois through the CARES Act. The City of Bloomington has a similar program.

Advocate BroMenn Medical Center in Normal
Staff / WGLT

Hospital officials in Bloomington-Normal are plotting what do once their beds are full as coronavirus cases and hospitalizations rise. 

A revamped series of behavioral health learning sessions kicks off Wednesday with a discussion about racial trauma.

McLean County Health Department sign
Staff / WGLT

A record number of McLean County residents are now hospitalized with COVID-19, as Bloomington-Normal hospitals report less than 10% of their ICU beds are available for new patients.

New library entrance
Bloomington Public Library

Bloomington Public Library patrons would see more parking, meeting space, new rooms for teens and sensory-friendly visitors, and a pharmacy-style curbside pickup window if a scaled-down $20 million expansion plan comes to fruition.

The Bloomington City Council learned during its meeting Monday that $3.2 million in COVID-19 relief has arrived to help the city’s battered budget, via the federally-funded CURES program. 

“This is great news for the city, related to our revenue issues” that continue to be a challenge, said Bloomington finance chief Scott Rathbun. 

CURES is a local government assistance program, distributed through the state but funded via the federal Coronavirus Relief Fund. 

Pritzker Warns Of Looming Crisis If Jobless Programs Aren't Extended

Nov 23, 2020
JB Pritzker closeup
Rex Arbogast / AP

Gov. JB Pritzker warned Monday of another looming economic crisis for the state and nation if Congress does not act soon to reauthorize extended unemployment benefits for people displaced from their jobs due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Justin Grimes / Flickr

There are three candidates for mayor of Bloomington plus a write-in, and two for mayor of Normal. The filing period for the municipal elections next year ended at 5 p.m. Monday.

Staff / WGLT

Heartland Community College in Normal is adding a certification program with an eye on the area’s growing need for mental health support professionals. 

Behavioral health continues to be one of the top three issues in McLean County’s Community Health Improvement Plan through 2022.

The new certificate program will allow students to advance into the workplace directly from Heartland.

Staff / WGLT

The McLean County Health Department is reporting 321 new confirmed COVID-19 cases and one death over the weekend, as the county’s testing positivity fell to 8.3%--the first time in more than a week the rate has been in the single digits.

Biden Tesla
Damian Dovarganes / AP

All sorts of industries are bracing for change, as we move from the Trump administration to the Biden administration.

Delta Frank Black in the WGLT studios during his encore show on May 15, 2016
Jon Norton / WGLT

WGLT's honored the late legendary blues host Gilbert "Delta" Frank Black on Saturday with a rebroadcast of the final hour of the encore appearance he made during WGLT's 50th anniversary celebration.

Student gets swabbed
Rick Bowmer / AP

Family means togetherness, especially during holidays like Thanksgiving and Christmas. But as college students head home to be with their families, the pandemic is forcing them to navigate different options to celebrate.

Woman practicing yoga
Carmen Champion

If your business is stress management, then 2020 is your year.

Downtown Bloomington
Cristian Jaramillo / WGLT

McLean County is one of only 77 counties in the United States to flip the presidential party preference from four years ago. McLean County went for Joe Biden and last cycle it went for President Trump.

Brian Williams
David Proeber / The Pantagraph (Pool)

A former Normal police officer was sentenced to 30 days in jail on Friday after he pleaded guilty to official misconduct in connection with the December theft of $12,000 while he was on duty.

Emily Bollinger / WGLT

UPDATED 4:30 P.M. | The Missouri Valley Conference is altering its conference basketball schedules in consideration of the escalating COVID-19 pandemic.  

Koos letters

At least one Normal restaurant continued to offer indoor service even after a visit from police, in another sign of the limits of local enforcement of state COVID restrictions, records show.

Larry Dietz at news conference
Lyndsie Schlink / Illinois State University

Illinois State University President Larry Dietz said Friday he plans to retire in June after more than seven years of leading the institution.