Town of Normal | WGLT

Town of Normal

Normal theater exterior
Ryan Denham / WGLT

After being closed for six months due to the pandemic, the Normal Theater will reopen for in-person film screenings starting Oct. 1.

Town of Normal sign
WGLT file photo

The Town of Normal is using some of its federal COVID relief for housing assistance.

Koos and Dietz at an event
Jeff Smudde / WGLT

UPDATED 5:45 p.m. | The Town of Normal moved Friday to slow the alarming spread of COVID-19 among Illinois State University students by temporarily prohibiting large gatherings near campus and requiring bar and restaurant patrons to be seated.

Brad McMillan portait
Brad McMillan

A Bradley University professor and former congressional office manager has declared his candidacy for Normal Town Council.

Chris Koos
Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

Mayor Chris Koos of Normal said Wednesday he will run for another term of office next year.

Normal City Hall
Staff / WGLT

The November election campaign season is just ramping up, but some candidates already are looking ahead to next year's municipal contests.

Like attorney AJ Zimmerman, who said Tuesday he's running for Normal Town Council.

Small cell node
Rohanmkth / Creative Commons/Wikipedia

The City of Bloomington and Town of Normal are working together to hire a consultant to help establish rules for deploying wireless technology all over the community in ways that do not become eyesores.

In a virtual meeting on Tuesday night, the Normal Human Relations Commission heard a presentation from Prairie State Legal Services about fair housing issues.

Attorney Emily Petri outlined the protections guaranteed to renters and homebuyers under the federal Fair Housing Act, the Illinois Human Rights Act, and local ordinances.

Designed to protect people from unfair housing practices, the laws prohibit discrimination on the basis of characteristics like race, religion, sexual orientation, family status, and disability.

Mark Turnaukus / Flickr / CC-by 2.0

The looming end to a statewide rent moratorium is not the only thing sparking financial fear. A ban on utility shutoffs can't last forever—and a lot of renters and homeowners are behind on their bills.

Chris Koos
WGLT file photo

It’s hard right now. Central Illinois residents have removed themselves from many of their friends and familiar activities to prevent the spread of the virus. Yet cases are climbing again in McLean County as central Illinois moved from phase 3 to phase 4 of the state's Restore Illinois reopening plan.

Chris Koos watches results
Cristian Jaramillo / WGLT

Normal Mayor Chris Koos offered a rebuttal to council member Stan Nord’s view of council involvement in appointments to boards and commissions during a WGLT interview Tuesday.

Town of Normal

The Normal City Council on Monday night signed off on using motor fuel tax money for a portion of a $9.35 million improvement project on West College Avenue.

Grid of commissioners
YouTube

The Normal Human Relations Commission met this week to deliberate on how to make positive changes within the community.

Map of the project area
Town of Normal

Town staff is asking the Normal Town Council to approve a speedy application for the state's Rebuild Illinois Public Infrastructure grant money to improve a deteriorating West College Avenue near the Rivian auto plant.

A special council meeting to consider the proposal is set for Monday evening.

Town of Normal

A decaying, unfinished industrial property in Normal could become viable again if a development agreement is approved with a Milwaukee-based firm.

an old house with an antique ambulance driving up to it.
McLean County Museum of History

The influenza pandemic of 1918 claimed the lives of some 600,000 Americans and perhaps more than 50 million people worldwide. Bloomington-Normal also felt profound effects.

McLean County Museum of History Librarian and Archivist Bill Kemp said you could hardly think of a worse year for that flu disaster to happen.

utility poles
Town of Normal

The Normal Town Council on Monday approved spending nearly $250,000 to move more Uptown utilities underground, keeping on track a new brewpub and restaurant that will help offset about half the cost of that work.

Normal signage
Staff / WGLT

Projections made by the Town of Normal’s finance department anticipate a $10.4 million loss in the general fund, but officials say a strong fiscal position entering the pandemic will enable the town to get through the economic downturn.

RJ Scaringe
Carlos Delgado/AP Images for Rivian

Rivian founder and CEO RJ Scaringe said his company will not be seeking the $1 million grant that it was owed from the Town of Normal, saying “the funds would better serve our community by remaining with the municipality."

Uptown One building
Carleigh Gray / WGLT

A black box theater, a temporary post office location, and a long list of restaurants are among the many options considered to fill the vacant first-floor space at One Uptown—or the “missing tooth in a beautiful smile,” as the developer puts it.

The Camelback Bridge in Normal on Friday, March 20, 2020.
Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

UPDATED 5:35 p.m. | Virginia Avenue in Normal is closed at Camelback Bridge due to a collapse of a decorative timber truss.

Dave Anderson
Courtesy

An iconic city manager of Normal has died at the age of 82.

Chris Koos
Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

Mayor Chris Koos of Normal said the town will enforce the restaurant and bar closure ordered by the governor because of the coronavirus.

Stan and Chemberly
Staff / WGLT

Several Town of Normal employees will get their semiannual cost of living raises, but Council Member Stan Nord says it’s a bad look for the town in the current economic climate.

Pam Reece
Emma Shores / WGLT

The Town of Normal is proceeding with plans to halt water shutoffs and delay a scheduled utility and waste fee increase in response to potential economic ramifications from the coronavirus pandemic.

"As we know, this situation is going to have significant economic impact," City Manager Pam Reece said during Monday's Town Council meeting. "We just don't know to what extent."

Two women standing side-by-side wearing 2020 Census t-shirts to promote making sure every McLean County resident is counted.
Colleen Reynolds / WGLT

Filling out the 2020 Census should be something people wear like a badge of honor, sort of like the “I Voted” stickers people sport after they’ve cast their ballots.

Antennae on a rooftop
Tony Weber / Creative Commons

The mayor of Normal says 5G and other smart city technology developments will be the topic for the annual One Voice leadership trip to Washington, D.C.

Mural and Beaufort buildings
Ryan Denham / WGLT

Many factors influence how much rent the Town of Normal charges tenants of town-owned property, according to the mayor of Normal.

Ron Batory
Eric Stock / WGLT

The head of the Federal Railroad Administration took to a train ride to Uptown Station to see the facility that's getting $13 million for an underpass.

Normal Public Library podcast
Normal Public Library

If it seems like everybody is doing a podcast these days, it might almost be true. That includes governments.

As digital technology has made it cheap and easy to deliver anyone's message to the world, WGLT explores how municipalities and other public bodies are using podcasts to communicate with constituents in new ways and wonder if it's making a difference.

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