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NEWS IN BRIEF

EP-G proposed cuts would extend balances

EL PASO The El Paso-Gridley School District could cut almost a million dollars from its budget, including staff cuts, or else spend its reserves within two or three years.

The board, during a special meeting Thursday, heard details of the proposal, would eliminate or reduce academic, athletic and non-athletic programs, extracurricular activities, administration and board, operations, maintenance and transportation.

Superintendent Bill James said the plan could extend fund balances five to seven years.

Public input also will be taken during board meetings on Thursday and March 2, with final action on March 16.

Pool community forum planned Thursday

LEROY - The Friends of the Pool will hold a community forum at 7 p.m. Thursday at Water Tower Place.

The purpose is to provide information on the condition of the current pool and information about a bond referendum on the March ballot. A question-and-answer session will follow.

The Illinois Department of Public Health has said the LeRoy Community Park pool will not be allowed to reopen this summer unless code violations are corrected.

Park district president Samantha Gulley said the cost of bringing the pool up to code and the cost of replacing the pool are nearly the same. The park district does not have enough money in its budget to do either.

IN COURT

Man, 36, accused of stealing beer

BLOOMINGTON - A 36-year-old man is accused of stealing alcohol from a Bloomington grocer in early January.

Michael R. Howard, of the 1500 block of Ensign Drive in Normal, was in jail Thursday in lieu of $300 on a charge of retail theft. A court file indicates the charge is a felony because of a conviction for retail theft in a 2004 case.

Heroin - A Bloomington man is accused of possessing heroin and hypodermic syringes Wednesday in Normal.

John Bian, 26, was in jail Thursday in lieu of $2,000 on charges of unlawful possession of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia. A court file lists his address in both the 2300 block of Woodhavens Drive in Bloomington and the 2400 block of East Washington Street.

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