Sound Ideas | WGLT

Sound Ideas

Davis and Trump
Jeff Roberson / AP

Hundreds of Republicans in Congress have declined to acknowledge that President-elect Joe Biden is indeed the president-elect. President Trump himself continues to falsely claim he won the election, even as he seriously considers launching a bid for 2024.

County Board oath of office
Emily Bollinger

McLean County swore in three new County Board members and reelected John McIntyre as chairman during a special meeting on Monday.

Rivian sign and plant photo
WGLT file photo

Rivian has leased the Phoenix Investors warehouse in north Normal as part of its ramp-up to production.

Jim Lathrop watching football practice
GoRedbirds.com

Jim Lathrop has been helping student-athletes build their bodies for decades. Now, his body is breaking down.

Drive-through virus testing
Lynne Sladky / AP

Illinois State University plans up to 20,000 rapid coronavirus tests per week with the help of a new lab.

Child seated
Wilfredo Lee / AP

Remote learning has shaken up the way educators teach—and how teachers measure student growth.

Some worry students may fall behind without in-person instruction. The fear is greater for students already struggling in school. Educators say just because learning looks different during the COVID-19 pandemic, it doesn't mean students do worse. Some argue now is the time to reconsider how to assess students.

Most congregant living places in Bloomington Normal have had COVID outbreaks. Not homeless shelters. Safety comes at a cost at a crowded time of year. Plus, hear from Bloomington Mayoral candidate Jackie Gunderson. This year's America’s Best College Poet comes from Illinois State University. And singer songwriter Leah Marlene of Normal has a new album out a ballad-heavy introspective, full of doubts and the stress of expectations.

The mother of an abused and murdered little girl says the state child welfare system failed her daughter. Ann Simmons has started a not for profit to advocate for reform after the death of Rica Rountree. Plus Illinois State University is closer to the start of rapid saliva testing for the Coronavirus. Hear from a write in candidate for Mayor of Bloomington. And a central Illinois entrepreneur is trying to create an app to translate American sign language to the spoken word.

TUE - Bloomington Mayoral candidate Mboka Mwilambwe says he's voted for new parks and a number of other must have projects for the city. Mwilambwe says that fiscal responsibility has made it more possible for the city to weather the pandemic. Plus, OSF Saint Joseph Medical Center is putting in a ten million dollar cancer center. It's world AIDS Day. Hear a comparison of the HIV crisis and the pandemic...they're more similar than you'll be comfortable with. And listen for an update on Illinois Wesleyan University's response to the pandemic.

Ames Library at Illinois Wesleyan University
Staff / WGLT

The head of Illinois Wesleyan University’s coronavirus response said COVID-19 compliance on campus was generally good during the fall semester, but it was a learning process for both students and staff." class="wysiwyg-break drupal-content" src="/sites/all/modules/contrib/wysiwyg/plugins/break/images/spacer.gif" title="<--break-->">

Mon - Hospitals that treat COVID patients aren't the only health care facilities strained for space and staffing during the pandemic. Long term care facilities are in a pinch as well. Plus, State Senator Jason Barickman suggests Medicaid is one of the cuts that needs to be made to balance the state budget now that the progressive tax measure has failed. Hear an update on Bloomington Public Library expansion plans. And a central Illinois Univerity is helping NASA get back to the moon.

Advocate Bromenn Hospital
Emma Shores / WGLT

COVID-19 has created a health care logjam as new cases rise, but hospitals aren't the only ones strained for space and staffing." class="wysiwyg-break drupal-content" src="/sites/all/modules/contrib/wysiwyg/plugins/break/images/spacer.gif" title="<--break-->">

Senator Jason Barickman on the Senate floor.
Seth Perlman / AP

Now that voters have rejected the income tax amendment to the State Constitution to create a progressive tax structure, Illinois faces hard choices to balance the budget during the spring session of the General Assembly." class="wysiwyg-break drupal-content" src="/sites/all/modules/contrib/wysiwyg/plugins/break/images/spacer.gif" title="<--break-->">

Rica and Ann
Family Photo

When Ann Simmons last saw her daughter Rica Rountree alive on April 20, 2018, with obvious signs of abuse, she knew she had to change her life for the better if she was going to save her daughter’s life." class="wysiwyg-break drupal-content" src="/sites/all/modules/contrib/wysiwyg/plugins/break/images/spacer.gif" title="<--break-->">

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.

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

The Hoefler Family
Courtesy

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.

A central Illinois LGBTQ advocacy group is a quarter century old and it wasn't easy getting protections in Bloomington Normal. Hear about progress and challenges for the Prairie Pride Coalition. Plus, Rivian is part of a new lobbying group that is welcoming the Biden Administration emphasis on environmentally friendly energy and transportation. If you must travel for Thanksgiving, Tim Shelley reports on how to do it safely. For the first time in decades Illinois House speaker Mike Madigan is in Jeopardy of losing control of the house.

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. 

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." class="wysiwyg-break drupal-content" src="/sites/all/modules/contrib/wysiwyg/plugins/break/images/spacer.gif" title="<--break-->">

Library leaders recently made their pitch to the Bloomington City Council. If the council signs off, construction would begin in April 2022 and take about 18 months.

A central Illinois LGBTQ advocacy group is a quarter century old and it wasn't easy getting protections in Bloomington Normal. Hear about progress and challenges for the Prairie Pride Coalition. Plus, Rivian is part of a new lobbying group that is welcoming the Biden Administration emphasis on environmentally friendly energy and transportation. If you must travel for Thanksgiving, Tim Shelley reports on how to do it safely. For the first time in decades Illinois House speaker Mike Madigan is in Jeopardy of losing control of the house.

Illinois State University President Larry Dietz says a question about lessons from the pandemic at a student recruitment session kicked off introspection that has led to a retirement announcement. ISU gets ready to look for new leadership. Plus, not for profit groups sometimes have trouble attracting people for on line charity auctions. One group is creating a hybrid, see it online first then check it out in person in a distanced way. And If your business is stress management, then 2020 is your year. Eric Stock  has more.

Biden Tesla
Damian Dovarganes / AP

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

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.

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.

Twelve Bloomington bars go before the liquor commission hearing Friday over alleged violations of the ban on indoor service to slow the spread of the coronavirus. However, there wouldn’t be violations without customers.

An escaped slave with a central Illinois connection grabbed the colors from a falling comrade and charged the cannons in a Civil War battle. Hear how Andy Jackson Smith won the Medal of Honor more than a century after his bravery. Plus, hospital staffing is tough in Bloomington Normal. Eric Stock reports it's difficult to find enough people as the case numbers climb. And brain scans of modern humans taken while they flake stone tools might help tell us how language developed in early or pre humans. Learn about the exciting field of bio-anthropology.

William Caisley and George Gordon seated at board meeting
WGLT file photos

Two of McLean County's longest-serving elected officials are set to exit the stage.

Heroes sign outside Carle Bromenn
Mike McCurdy / WGLT

The head of OSF St. Joseph Medical Center in Bloomington says staffing remains "solid" despite the need for increased personnel to care for more coronavirus patients.

Climate change is changing the insurance industry. One analyst says it reminds him of the financial crisis more than a decade ago. If you have three 1 in 10,000 year events on consecutive days, there's something wrong with your models. How to account for increased numbers of severe weather events in property and casualty coverage. Plus, The Mayor of Normal says the upward trajectory of Coronavirus cases has made him eat his words. And what's next for state government and its budget now that there's no graduated income tax change.

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