Winnebago County

ioc.state.il.us

Senior citizens in Winnebago County will not be required to renew their Senior Citizen Homestead Exemption this year.

If the exemption shows up on seniors’ tax bills, they will still receive it as long as they still live in and own their home.

The decision to not require renewals will save many elderly citizens the inconvenience of either having to deliver the form in person or mailing it back to the county. 

Former Winnebago County Sheriff Don Gasparini died Friday in Naples, Florida. He was 72.

The Democrat was first elected sheriff in 1980 and served until he retired in 1997.

Gasparini was popular among county residents for his big, friendly personality. He was an avid hunter and well-known for his wild game dinner fundraisers.

He did, however, gain some national notoriety 20 years ago related to a hunting violation. He was caught hunting on land in Ogle County without permission and fined for failing to immediately tag a deer he had killed.

Officials in Rockford and Winnebago County say they're ready to discuss merging their emergency call centers.

The two systems were separated about a decade ago.

The Winnebago County Sheriff's Department handles emergency calls outside of Rockford, while the city's 9-1-1 center dispatches police and fire and helps callers inside city limits. They currently serve as backup centers to each other.

Winnebago County Sees Flu Increase

Nov 28, 2014
CDC

The Winnebago County Health Department reported an increase in flu cases in the past week. It expects further increases in the coming weeks. 

The department tracks flu-like illness using emergency room data from two health systems and three local sentinel sites. Flu poses the most serious risk to children under 5 years, people 65 and older, pregnant women, and those with certain long-term medical conditions.

Getting vaccinated is the best way to prevent getting influenza.

Illinois17th.com

A northern Illinois judge who helped implement a cameras-in-court program was selected to chair a committee comprised of chief judges from around the state.

Joseph McGraw is chief judge of the Rockford-based 17th Judicial Circuit. He'll assume the chairman's post on the Conference of Chief Judges in December.

McGraw will take over after the chief judge of the 11th Judicial Circuit, Elizabeth Robb, retires.

A Shot Of Hope In The Fight Against Heroin

Aug 12, 2014
Greg M. Cooper/Alkermes

A new treatment for heroin addicts is being tested by Winnebago County officials. Those participating in the county's drug court can voluntarily try medication aimed at reducing their dependency on opiates.

Winnebago County Leaders To Meet Saturday

Jun 7, 2013

County Board Member John Sweeney, a Republican, will meet with Rockford Alderman Karen Elyea, a Democrat, to discuss what committees may be needed to work together on the area’s hot button issues.

The two were co-chairs of meetings of various county and city officials to discuss issues such as high crime, housing, and lack of economic development.

RRSTAR:Rockford, Winnebago County Pols To Talk Collaboration

file photo / Winnebago County Sheriff's Department

A Winnebago County woman has pleaded guilty to leaving her newborn to freeze to death by the side of the road in 2004. 32-year-old Katie Stockton of Rockton reached a plea agreement with prosecutors this morning in the death of the infant dubbed “Baby Crystal.” 

A proposed landfill expansion near Rockford has cleared a major hurdle. The Winnebago County Board has overwhelmingly approved the project.

Rockford Register Star

Owners of Rockford-area landfill are seeking approval to add more than 200 acres.  Experts and members of the public are getting their chance to voice their opinions.