Summer Reading Program
The Warren County Public Library's summer reading program is Reading by Design! Throughout the summer, the library hosts special events. Stop by the library and pick up a schedule of events, or look at their Facebook page. All events are free and open to the public.
There are four categories for the summer reading program:
Read to Me for kids under 5: Parents will read to their children. For every 30 minutes of reading, your child is eligible to win up to two prizes a week.
Kids from 6-7: For every 30 minutes of reading, you are eligible to win up to two prizes a week.
Kids from 8-12: For every two hours of reading, you are eligible to win up to two prizes a week.
Teens from 13-18: There is no need to register to participate. Fill out a slip of paper for each book you read, and write a sentence about it. Each book increases your chances of winning a weekly teen-only prize!
Part-Time Facilitator Position Available for CEO Program
The City of Monmouth is one of the founding sponsors of the Warren County CEO (Creating Entrepreneurial Opportunities) Program, which is a new business education course for juniors and seniors at Monmouth-Roseville and United high schools.
The program is seeking a facilitator for the class—someone who believes that education extends beyond the classroom. The CEO facilitator creates a learning environment where students are encouraged to explore, discover and experience learning through real-life activities.
The facilitator’s role is to model a passion for learning, connect with the students and community, collaborate with the CEO Board, and provide guidance to the students.
The facilitator position is half-time during the school year: ninety minutes of the day is spent with the students, and the balance is used for arranging business visits, guest speakers, calling on business people, etc. The facilitator will need to establish good relationships with the business community, prepare the communications that make the program transparent, and build the learning environment that allows students to succeed.
For a complete position description and to apply, please take a look at the CEO website.
Forklifts and Facelifts
As you drive around downtown Monmouth in the next few weeks, you may hear jackhammers or see forklifts. It's summer, and that means improvements are underway!
The City of Monmouth bought the former Vaughn Jewelers building last fall. Masonry repair work is underway and is expected to take three weeks. The paint is being sodablasted off to reveal the original brick. The mortar will be replaced, and a new roof will be installed. Once the building is looking its best, the City will be ready to find a developer to purchase the building and make interior improvements. The second floor has terrific views of downtown, and it would be a great place for loft apartments.
Thanks to Kellen Hinrichsen, executive director of the Warren County History Museum, for this photo from 1947.
The Buchanan Center for the Arts started their building renovation recently. The BCA received a $7,500 facade grant from the City, which will go towards enhancements like new windows, a sign and paint.
Bird's-eye view of the BCA from the upstairs community room at the Warren County Public Library.
City Receives Free Energy Efficient Products
“These new products are being installed at City Hall, the police department, the two fire stations, our water plants, the City garage and the 1st Street Armoury. I am particularly happy to see older buildings like the Armoury become more energy efficient,” said Jan Helms, executive administrative assistant for the City of Monmouth, who applied for the STEP program.
Market Alley Music Days Summer Schedule
Ancestry.com Now Available at the Library
The Warren County Public Library and the Warren County Genealogical Society now offer Ancestry.com: Library Edition. Start searching billions of records and discover your family's story. Access is available only in the library, so stop by today!
Welcome, Officer Williams!
The Monmouth Police Department is proud to introduce Marlon Williams. Officer Williams was sworn in as the newest member of the Police Department on May 1, 2017. Congratulations, Officer Williams!
City Clerk Susan Trevor swears in Officer Marlon Williams at City Hall as Chief Bill Feithen and Mayor Rod Davies watch.
New Weather Station at Monmouth Airport
The Monmouth Airport received a new weather station package that broadcasts local weather conditions to the public. The conditions include wind speed, wind direction, temperature, barometric pressure and humidity. The data is broadcast to the free Weather Underground website and is listed under the "Monmouth Airport" station.
Weather Underground has free smartphone apps for both iPhone and Android. The apps have helpful severe weather alerts as well as radar from our regional center in Davenport, Iowa.
Free Smoke Alarms Available
The American Red Cross and the Monmouth Fire Department are working together to ensure that every home in Monmouth has working smoke alarms. As of June 19, 2017, 73 free smoke alarms have been installed this year.
Residents may request a smoke alarm installation appointment at getasmokealarm.org or text the word "Alarm" to (844) 811-0100; or call (844) 319-6560 and press 9. There is no charge for the smoke alarms or the installation.
The Red Cross urges residents whose homes do not have smoke alarms, or if the current smoke alarms were installed more than five years ago, to make an appointment. Residents who are unable to check their smoke alarm batteries are also encouraged to make an appointment.
“Smoke alarms cut the risk of death from a fire in half," said Amber Wood, Executive Director for the American Red Cross, serving the Quad Cities and West Central Illinois. “Working in partnership with local fire departments, we can help protect your family by installing smoke alarms and teaching your children what to do if they hear it."
Seven times a day someone in our country dies in a fire. The Red Cross has been working to reduce that number through its Home Fire Campaign, a nationwide, multi-year effort to reduce the number of home fire deaths and injuries. Launched in October of 2014, the Red Cross and thousands of campaign partners have helped save numerous lives through the effort, and the campaign is on track to install the one-millionth free smoke alarm sometime in October 2017.
Simple Steps to Save Lives
Fire experts agree that people may have as little as two minutes to escape a burning home before it’s too late to get out. The Red Cross is calling on everyone to take two simple steps that can save lives: create and practice their home fire escape plan and check their smoke alarms. Other safety steps include:
- If someone doesn’t have smoke alarms, install them. At a minimum, put one on every level of the home, inside bedrooms and outside sleeping areas. Local building codes vary and there may be additional requirements depending on where someone lives.
- If someone does have alarms, test them today. If they don’t work, replace them.
- Make sure that everyone in the family knows how to get out of every room and how to get out of the home in less than two minutes.
- Practice that plan.
Red Cross Apps
You can download the all-inclusive Red Cross Emergency app which combines more than 35 emergency alerts to help keep users safe. And there is a special mobile app called Monster Guard that is designed for kids; it teaches them to prepare for emergencies at home by playing an engaging game. Users can find the apps in smartphone app stores by searching for the American Red Cross or going to redcross.org/apps.
What You Can Do
- Visit redcross.org/homefires to find out more about how to protect yourself and loved ones from fire.
- Help by donating to Red Cross Disaster Relief by visiting redcross.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS or texting the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. Donations to disaster relief are used to prepare for, respond to, and help people recover from disasters big and small.
Fire Department News
The Roseville Fire Department recently visited our dispatch center as part of an EMT training program that they have been hosting. The students were able to observe how an emergency call is handled in dispatch from start to finish. The dispatchers on duty were able to give them tips to improve communication response and what information they are able to relay, etc.
Kenny Helms, the director of information technology for the City of Monmouth, was on-site to show them the technology involved and discuss the future technology improvements for the center.
Almost all local EMT programs have sections on "communication technology," and we hope to use this and any future opportunity to streamline the dispatching process.
The Monmouth Fire Department received two new ice rescue suits and active shooter equipment—purchased with funds from the Illinois Public Risk Fund Grant Program. The IPRF Grant Program is designed to ease the burden of safety-related expenses. The grant covers training expenses, protective clothing, defibrillators, security cameras, rescue equipment and much more. Thanks to the grant, the MFD was able to purchase four EMS responder vests, eight tourniquets and bandages that will be used for active shooter responses to provide aid to victims.
The ice rescue suits are a huge upgrade to the old ones, which were at least 15 years old. Now they just need some ice to practice with them!
Coworking in Monmouth!
The City of Monmouth hosts coworking events at the Warren County Public Library on the second Thursday of the month. For people who have a home-based business or work remotely, coworking offers the opportunity to get out of the house and work in an upbeat environment with others. Sometimes a little noise is motivating! (And delicious Scots Roast coffee doesn't hurt.)
If you would like to join us for our next free CoWoMo event, please stop by the upstairs Community Room at the Library on Thursday, July 13, any time from 9 a.m. until 11:30 a.m. There is WiFi, so you can work on your phone or laptop. You can do your regular work, of course, or get through your email, write a blog post, or update your social media sites.
City Receives Grant to Eliminate Zombies
The City of Monmouth has received a $25,000 grant to demolish abandoned (“zombie”) homes in our community.
“I was so pleased we received the grant,” said Jan Helms, executive administrative assistant for the City. “These abandoned homes are not only eyesores but also have health and safety hazards.”
Vagrants, Vermin and Varmints, Oh, My!
Helms applied for the grant because Monmouth has issues with foreclosures and abandoned homes. Zombie houses attract pests and vermin and may appeal to squatters and vandals.
“We have identified 27 abandoned properties in various stages of disrepair, so we need all the financial assistance we can get,” she said. “The City of Monmouth has been actively pursuing the demolition of unsafe, unsecure structures for several years. We focus on renovation when possible, but sometimes demolition is our only recourse.”
The funds from this grant will allow the City to demolish several moderate-sized homes during the next year.
The grant is from the Illinois Housing Development Authority’s Abandoned Residential Property Municipality Relief Fund, which was created in 2010 with the passage of the Save Our Neighborhoods Act. Funding for the program comes from foreclosure filing fees and is available to municipalities with problem residential properties.
The City is also applying for a grant to help with housing rehab and a free Savings Through Efficient Products (STEP) program to make City-owned buildings more energy efficient.
New High School Course: Warren County CEO
The City of Monmouth is so pleased to be a part of the Warren County CEO (Creating Entrepreneurial Opportunities) program that will be available for Monmouth-Roseville High School and United High School juniors and seniors this fall.
The CEO program is much more than a textbook course. Students are immersed in real-life learning experiences with the opportunity to take risks, manage the results, and learn from the outcomes. They learn confidence-building skills like speaking in front of groups and targeted skills like writing successful business plans.
CEO is a business education program, teaching students how to think like business owners. The class meets off-campus in local businesses for 90 minutes each school day. Students dress in business casual attire every day and learn proper workplace behavior.
Each student receives a mentor from the business community. In the first semester, students create a class business. During the second semester, they have the opportunity to start their own business. The final event of the school year is a trade show, where they showcase their student businesses.
Students receive high school credit and (pending) dual credit with Carl Sandburg College.
This program is available through a partnership with the Midland Institute for Entrepreneurship. There is no cost to our schools or students for this program! All expenses are paid by businesses and foundations. If you would like to donate or sign up as a mentor or guest speaker, please see the attachment below.
You can read more about this innovative program here.
Thank you to the founding sponsors:
· City of Monmouth
· Mellinger Foundation (in honor of former Trustee and Scholarship Committee member Mary Frances Miller)
· Midwest Bank
· Monmouth College
· MTC Communications
· Security Savings Bank
· Tharp Brothers Underground Utility Service