Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Kuhl Virtual Seminar: Control Healthcare Like a Fortune 100 Company


At Kuhl Insurance, we believe in bringing creative and new ideas to business leaders in our community.

The employee benefits landscape has never been more complicated and we believe it is our responsibility to evaluate and present options in employee benefits program design and funding. It is an area of every business where successfully evaluating options now is necessary for the future of your finances and employee satisfaction.

We are proud to bring to you a captive in the marketplace, Pareto, along with a Third Party Administrator, Consociate. Please join us for an engaging review of how a captive can have a dramatic impact on your healthcare spend and the health of your employees and their families.

We are happy to announce Steve Hansen, Regional Vice President with Pareto Captive. Steve has been a part of the health insurance industry for 10 years, working with both self-funding and fully insured clients. Steve has helped double Pareto's membership, and brings stability and a proactive strategy to smaller companies looking to take control of their healthcare spend.

We are pleased to welcome Darren D. Reynolds, JD, CBWA, President and CEO of Consociate Health as a presenter. Darrin is co-founder of Consociate Health, and has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Millikin University and a Juris Doctorate in Law from the Southern Illinois University School of Law. He has also achieved designation as a Certified Benefit & Wellness Advisor (CBWA).

When: September 24th, 2020
Time: 9am - 10am
Location: Webinar

Illinois Central College and Midwest Community Colleges Join Forces with NRCS; Sign National MOU

         The United States Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) is partnering with Illinois Central College and eight additional Midwest community colleges to support hands-on student learning in the field, to develop future conservation-minded farmers and ranchers and to cultivate more graduates interested in pursuing careers with NRCS. 


On Monday, September 21, representatives of the Community College Alliance for Agriculture Advancement (C2A3) and NRCS held a virtual ceremony to formally sign a national memorandum of understanding (MOU) to develop a cooperative framework. The framework aims to enhance and accelerate training and adoption of technologies and best practices for improved agricultural productivity and natural resources stewardship.  


“Through this partnership, NRCS and member institutions are developing local plans to address regional and statewide challenges as well as support student internships and other training opportunities for college faculty, NRCS employees and producers,” said ICC President Dr. Sheila Quirk-Bailey. “This MOU provides the necessary framework to work together on common needs from a national perspective, while also providing the flexibility to address local concerns.” 


The C2A3 collaboration was born out of a mutual desire to provide ongoing education, training and demonstration projects to future farm producers and agricultural service providers with the goal of improving the health, and therefore the long-term productivity, resilience and sustainability of the soil. 


“Community colleges educate nearly half of all under-graduate students in this country and yet, our agriculture programs have been an under-utilized resource within USDA,” said Dr. Tracy Kruse, C2A3 board chair. “The majority of our students are the producers in fields. They are technicians in our local co-ops and implement dealers; and they are our agronomy and seed sales professionals. Through these efforts, we hope more of them will also become the soil health specialists and conservationists for local NRCS offices.”  


All C2A3 member institutions, including ICC, have college farms and can utilize their land resources for the implementation of conservation practices to help educate and inform students and producers. The goal of the cooperative agreement is to accelerate the adoption of conservation practices in the education of current two-year agriculture students and disseminate information to the broader community through field days and other college events and partnerships.  


In addition, the colleges are utilizing the network to share resources, knowledge and expertise. Collectively, they are working on a grant through USDA’s North Central Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) program, which seeks to increase awareness, knowledge and skills related to soil health, cover crops and no till agriculture. The development of content such as videos and case studies for the classroom is a critical component to help illustrate concepts of profitability, sustainability and productivity. These assets will be shared across the network for the benefit of all member institutions. 


In addition to ICC, C2A3 member institutions include Central Lakes College (Staples, Minn.), Clark State Community College (Springfield, Ohio), Ivy Tech Community College (Lafayette, Ind.), Northcentral Technical College (Wausau, Wis.), Northeast Community College (Norfolk, Neb.), Northeast Iowa Community College (Calmar, Iowa), North Dakota State College of Science (Wahpeton, N.D.), and Richland Community College (Decatur, Ill.). 


For more information about C2A3, visit the organization’s website at 



Thursday, September 17, 2020

Heartland Health Services Offers Health Fair


 Business Interruption Grants Program (BIG)

The Business Interruption Grant (BIG) program is a $636 million program developed by Governor Pritzker and the Illinois General Assembly to provide economic relief for small businesses hit hardest by COVID-19.BIG leverages federal funding provided by the CARES Act to help offset COVID-19 related losses for Illinois small businesses. funding may be used to help businesses with working capital expenses, including payroll costs; rent; utilities; and other operational costs as defined in the eligible cost list found below.Program Updates.

New to BIG – applications for a second round of funding are set to go live September 17. A total of $220 million will be made available for small businesses of all types in Illinois.

More details on the latest round of funding and how to apply can be found here.



Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce

Tuesday, September 29

12:00 pm – 4:00 pm

Mobile Bus- 402 Court St.


All donors are required to have an appointment and wear a facial covering.


All donors will earn a Gift Card OR retro inspired T-shirt!

Avanti's Event Center to host CO-ED SOFTBALL & KICKBALL Fall Leagues!


City of Pekin considers TIF and BDD Creation

The use of both Tax Increment Financing and a Business Development District will be essential tools to help address some of the major issues facing the community that include:

  • deteriorating infrastructure;
  • blight and deterioration; and an
  • economic downturn aggravated by COVID-19.  
Illinois municipalities have available to them the use of Tax Increment Financing (TIF) Districts and Business Development Districts (BDD) to address such issues.  Each is described below.  
Tax Increment Financing (TIF) Districts
TIF Districts provide a means in which communities can financially assist in the development or redevelopment of a site or area. Cities can utilize the incremental increase in property tax revenues as a result of a redevelopment project to assist with qualifying development projects.  TIF Districts can only be established in municipalities, and as such, municipalities often consider creating TIF Districts to assist with specific redevelopment projects. 
Other times, cities will establish a TIF district to catalyze economic activity in a blighted area.  Using the incremental revenues in the TIF, a community can undertake economic development activities or provide incentives that otherwise might not be possible in order to encourage job creation, increase property values, and to protect the local tax base. Eligible project costs in a TIF can include, but is not limited to: 
  • Rehabilitating, reconstructing, remodeling of existing structures; 
  • Costs of construction of public infrastructure improvements; 
  • Architectural, engineering, legal, financial services; and
  • Property assembly costs such as acquisition, demolition, clearing and grading. 
Business Development Districts (BDD) 
A Business Development District is a legally defined contiguous area of a municipality that has certain powers and authorities different from other parts of the municipality. The purposes of the Business District Development is to strengthen the tax base of the Business District area; to assure opportunities for district development or redevelopment; and to attract sound and stable commercial growth in the District.  A BDD is a defined area within which businesses can levy an additional sales tax on eligible goods sold.  Municipalities may elect to impose this additional sales tax in increments of 0.25% up to a maximum of 1.0%.

As with TIF Districts, the BDD is in place for up to 23 years. Funds generated as a result of this sales tax can then be used for certain eligible costs within the district as prescribed by the Business District Act.  Examples of eligible costs (similar to that of TIF) include: 
  • Building construction costs, including reimbursement payments to private developers;
  • Rehabilitating, reconstructing, remodeling of existing structures; 
  • Costs of construction of public infrastructure improvements; 
  • Architectural, engineering, legal, financial services; and
  • Property assembly costs such as acquisition, demolition, clearing and grading. 
One benefit of the BDD over TIF is that it can help assist on new construction where TIF cannot. In combination, both the TIF and BDD can effectively be used to help fund eligible public works projects such as the restoration of Court or Derby Streets; various sidewalk repairs; or storm water management projects. Funds can also go to help new and existing businesses renovate, expand operations or relocate to a more suitable location.  Additionally, there are no restrictions for TIF or BDD funds to help neighborhoods with housing stabilization, demolition of vacant structures or emergency repairs, as long as, the neighborhoods are located within the TIF/BDD District. 
Below are links showing the proposed study areas where a new TIF and BDD may be located in the city.
Click on the following link for the TIF District Redevelopment Plan
Click on the following link for the Business Development District Redevelopment Plan

Watch the city's website for information relative to the next Public Hearing!


The Big Table: Greater Peoria 2020

 The Big Table goes Virtual!

October 19-22

from 11:30am-1:00pm

via ZOOM

The Big Table: Greater Peoria launched in 2019 as a day of regional community building through conversations designed to strengthen and connect communities. By continuing these open, thoughtful conversations that focus on how we can strengthen our region, we will spark new relationships and new ways for working together by deepening our understanding of each other and what our region needs.

Join us in October for a 4-day series of virtual lunchtime conversations around the important issues in our community. This year’s big event will be hosted completely virtually via Zoom. Register for any sessions that you are interested in. There is no cost, but registration is required.


Visit to register.

Topics of discussion:

·     Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

·     Workforce & Education

·     Innovation & Entrepreneurship

·     Quality of Life & Place

 10.19.20-10.22.20 | 11:30AM-1:00PM | Virtual ZOOM | FREE 

 Please Register in advance. 

The conversation will be recorded and posted for viewing later.




Wednesday, September 2, 2020

2020 Taste of Marigold Schedule of Events

    MONDAY, AUGUST 31           

    12:00 pm -- Pepsi Marigold Medallion Clue #1 Released – additional clues to be released         each day until the Medallion if found.  No clue will be released on Sunday, September 6.


12:30 pm -- Marigold Golf Outing sponsored by UnityPoint Health, East Court Village, Pekin Community Bank, Commerce Bank, & Reditus Laboratories, held at Sunset Hills Golf Course 


10:00 am - 12:00 pm  -- Kids Experience Packet Pickup - Vonderheide Floor Coverings 105 N. 14th Street, Pekin

2:00-4:00 pm -- Kids Experience Packet Pickup - Vonderheide Building 290 Derby Street, Pekin


5:00 – 8:00 pm -- Business After Hours Wine Tasting - Pekin Country Club


7:30 pm --Dan Pfeifer State Farm Drive In Movie - Mineral Springs Park                       


9:00 - 11:00 am -- Busey Bank Drive Thru Parade - Mineral Springs Park

11:00 am - 4:00 pm -- Pekin Insurance Festive Foods & CEFCU Marigold Mugs - First United Methodist Church Parking Lot

7:30 pm -- Dan Pfeifer State Farm Drive In Movie - Mineral Springs Park


12:00 - 4:00 pm – Pekin Insurance Festive Foods & CEFCU Marigold Mugs - First United Methodist Church Parking Lot

12:00 - 4:00 pm – NRG Powerton Generating Station Chalk Walk