Illinois

Jenna Dooley / WNIJ

DeKalb’s Municipal Band will not be traveling abroad next summer to celebrate the anniversary of D-Day in Normandy, France, due to financial constraints. 

They originally had been selected to be the only band from Illinois to perform in D-Day celebrations.

Conductor Kirk Lundbeck says the DeKalb Municipal Band was not able to raise the needed funds. But he says there still may be other performance opportunities to come for the band, which could include playing in Washington, D.C., Mount Rushmore or Pearl Harbor in 2019.

Jenna Dooley / WNIJ

Community input played a role in keeping the DeKalb Municipal Band operating at normal capacity for now.

The DeKalb City Council held a special meeting recently where they addressed potential budget cuts for the next year. That included the possibility of reduced funding for the DeKalb Municipal Band.

DeKalb Alderman David Jacobson says the band currently gets $60,000 annually when they usually only spend $50,000. He says the city agreed to cut just the $10,000 difference during the special meeting.

Guy Stephens/WNIJ

Today is the beginning of Illinois’s year-long bicentennial celebration. Counties and municipalities across the state read special proclamations and raised an Illinois Bicentennial Flag.

A couple of dozen people gathered next to the flagpole in front of the DeKalb County Courthouse in Sycamore to hear County Chairman Mark Pietrowski read a letter from State Rep. Bob Pritchard, R-Hinckley, on the significance of the anniversary.

Katie Finlon / WNIJ

Dozens of state employee union members and Northern Illinois University employees protested Monday on the DeKalb campus.

They came in support of a fair initial contract between AFSCME and NIU. Protestors marched in the turn-around outside Altgeld Hall on campus.

AFSCME members have been negotiating with NIU officials since February 2016. Since then, union members filed unfair labor practice charges against NIU and recently won a case regarding parking pass rate increases.

niu.edu / afscme.org

A state employee union plans to seek an enforcement hearing against Northern Illinois University regarding a parking pass rate increase.

The Illinois Educational Labor Relations Board ruled in September that NIU raised parking pass prices in 2016 without bargaining with the union. The IELRB also ruled that NIU should reimburse more than 600 clerical, paraprofessional and administrative employees $38 each plus interest.

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