The Commercial-News, Danville, IL

Local News

April 28, 2013

ARE WE READY: Local emergency funding tougher to get

DANVILLE — More than a decade ago, the Newport Chemical Depot just across the Illinois-Indiana state line was the focus of emergency planning in Vermilion County because of the potential danger posed by an emergency at the facility.

Fast forward to 2013 and the facility — as well as the federal funding provided to prepare for an emergency there — are a thing of the past.

We’ve changed our attention away from (the Chemical Stockpile Emergency Preparedness Program) because it’s pretty much gone,” said Vermilion County Emergency Management Agency Director Ted Fisher.

The chemical depot, located along Indiana Route 63, produced and stored VX, a deadly nerve agent. The facility closed after more 1,200 tons of VX were destroyed on the site.

“We used to get a lot of money because of CSEPP,” Fisher said of the federal funding. “As a matter of fact, we wouldn’t have some of the things we have now without CSEPP. We’d be struggling even worse.”

The tragedy of Sept. 11, 2001, spawned much of the funds the Vermilion County EMA received for several years. But over time, those funds have begun to drop off considerably.

“A lot of this stuff has grown since 9/11,” Fisher said of state and federal requirements. “A lot of the duties have grown, but the money hasn’t grown.

“Initially there was a lot of money to have for training and equipment and things like that,” he added. “Now the budgets are drying up and it’s a little harder to get things done.”

The EMA works off a budget of $250,000 budget from the county.

The agency also receives two state grants — the larger being $35,000 total — as well as a smaller grant, the latter of which is used for hazardous material issues. Fisher said there are a lot of hoops to jump through to apply for what federal grants are still out there for EMA.

The county’s hazardous materials team receives $15,000 per year from EMA to operate, he said.

“As far as taxpayers go, that’s pretty darn cheap to have a haz mat team because haz mat teams are pretty expensive,” Fisher said, adding such teams can be “thousands and thousands of dollars expensive.”

The small amount the team receives, however, is starting to show in areas such as equipment, some of which has become outdated. The team’s last new equipment came almost a decade ago.

“It’s a solution were going to have to look at a far as getting them equipment,” Fisher said.

The yearly drop in money has prompted cutbacks in previous years. Fisher said EMA had to stop supplying food to responders at the scenes of large fires because of the expense involved. The area American Red Cross now does that.

“What do you cut back, what’s going to go?” he said.

Things have become tight enough that Fisher said he may even have to look at cuts for his staff — which totals just three people.

“You can’t fix everything, but you have to try to limit how much risk you have out her to keep everybody safe and happy,” Fisher said.

Text Only
Local News
  • a Earns Best Buy.jpg Danv test headline goes here Danv test web summary goes here.

    August 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Police, Fire Reports

    August 21, 2014

  • NWS-CN 08-21 Bomb photo Bomb scare empties city block

    DANVILLE — Emergency personnel shut down a city block and evacuated several businesses following a suspicious package found along North Walnut Street.Danville police were contacted a little after 11:30 a.m. Wednesday after a black suitcase was discov

    August 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • NWS-CN 08-21 Renaissance photo Ellsworth to host Renaissance Village DANVILLE—The Illinois Renaissance Festival will celebrate its 10th year in Danville with some new activities.This is the festival’s 12th year. It was in Champaign in 2003-2004 and moved to Danville in 2005, according to JoMarie Dugan, director of the

    August 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Appeals court says term limits can't be on ballot SPRINGFIELD — Proponents of term limits for Illinois lawmakers were preparing a last-minute appeal to the state Supreme Court after an appeals court ruled Wednesday that a measure asking voters to approve such a measure could not appear on the Novemb

    August 21, 2014

  • Police Reports Incidents reported to police include:DanvilleMonday:Home repair fraud reported in the 1300 block of Vacketta Drive.Tuesday:Trespassing in the 900 block of Wakley Drive.Theft in the 400 block of Gilbert Street.Theft in the 100 block of Grace Street.Th

    August 21, 2014

  • Board pleased with dress code compliance

    DANVILLE — Although the school year is young, Danville District 118 administrators and school board members are pleased with implementation of the new dress code.

    August 21, 2014

  • Art group plans open house

    August 20, 2014

  • Barbecue contest opens

    August 20, 2014

  • Police, Fire Reports

    August 20, 2014

Spring 2014 Photos

Buy these photos and more via Smugmug

AP Video
US: We Do Not Pay Ransom to Terrorists Ferguson Teachers Training to Deal With Trauma Jon Hamm on the Unrest in Ferguson Tit for Tat? McDonald's Shuttered in Moscow Life on the Professional Video Game Circuit TX Gov Perry in Washington: 'Confident' in Case Hospital Releases Two Missionaries Who Had Ebola Ramen Health Risks: The Dark Side of the Noodle NYC Doctor-in-chief Seeks Community Approach Indonesian Police Fire Tear Gas at Protesters Raw: Shots Fired in Liberian Shantytown DOJ, Bank of America Reach Record Settlement Raw: Cubavision Airs Images of Fidel Castro Raw: Grief After Deadly Airstrikes in Gaza Officer Who Pointed Gun at Protesters Suspended Kathy Griffin Challenges Minaj to 'a Booty Off' Johnson: Six Arrests, No Tear Gas in Ferguson Raw: Rescue, Relief Efforts at Japan Landslide Cadavers, a Teen, and a Medical School Dream California Drought Stings Honeybees, Beekeepers
NDN Video
Rapper Almost Walks Off CNN Over Ferguson Coverage Whoa! Jimmy Fallon Shaves Jared Leto's Beard Amazing Encounter With Sea Otter Caught on Video 2 American Ebola Patients Released From Hospital VIDEO: Goliath Grouper eats shark in one bite US Mission to Rescue Hostages in Syria Failed Reggie Jackson's ALS Ice Bucket Challenge Motorcyclist Sticks Landing Sicilian hilltop homes on sale for one euro Are Mariah Carey and Nick Cannon Breaking Up? Joel McHale Interviews Chelsea This 'Breaking Bad' Reunion is the Most Hilarious Thing You'll See All Day! President Obama talks about who James Foley was Nicki Minaj Unleashes Her 'Anaconda' On the World Watch Helicopter Perform Aerial Ballet Can Buckeyes fill Miller's void? Victoria's Secret Models Prove They're in Fighting Shape How Brian Hoyer Stacks Up With Johnny Manziel Taylor Swift Reveals New Album 1989 is Full-On Pop Crews rescue elderly woman trapped inside flooded minivan
Must Read