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posted: 3/19/2010 12:01 AM

Lawmakers look to save fire districts money

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SPRINGFIELD - Fire protection districts would no longer be required to publish proposed ordinances in newspapers under a law the state Senate approved that instead utilizes Web sites.

As proposed and approved by senators, whenever a fire protection district wants to create a penalty or spend money, it still would be required to put notice in a local newspaper. But rather than publish the entire proposal, the district would only need to buy a smaller ad that informs local residents that action is pending and details can be found at the district's Web site. A phone number would be provided for those without Internet service.

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State Sen. Arthur "A.J." Wilhelmi, a Joliet Democrat who sponsored the plan, said the idea is to utilize technology to ensure the public is informed while also reducing costs so more money can go to fighting fires.

The proposal was approved 48-5 and advances to the Illinois House for further consideration.

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