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News briefs: Free child safety event Saturday

Updated: September 6, 2014 6:04AM



Operation KidSafe, a free child safety event, is scheduled for 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at Sutton Ford, 21315 Central, Matteson.

Children’s pictures and inkless fingerprints will be captured using a digital video device, and tips to set up a family safety action plan will be provided, according to organizers.

A printout of the photo and fingerprints will be given to parents, who can provide it to law enforcement anywhere in the world in the event an investigation is needed. No database or records of children are maintained by those at the event, organizers said. The program is recommended for all children age 1 and older, and for special-needs adults, according to the press release.

For more information, call Operation KidSafe at (866) 962-5487 or Sutton Ford at (708) 720-8150.

Staff report

Tinley Park rolls out ‘Lock It or Lose It’ campaign

The Tinley Park Police Department will officially kick off its new “Lock It or Lose It” theft-prevention campaign during the village’s 31st annual National Night Out event from 5 to 9 p.m. Tuesday at Zabrocki Plaza, 17375 S. Oak Park Ave., according to a release from the village.

“Lock It or Lose It” is a national program intended to remind residents that many property crimes can be prevented simply by locking home doors, garage doors, windows and vehicle doors, the release said.

“While Tinley Park has a low incident of violent crime, there has been an increase in property crime, especially burglaries to motor vehicles,” Police Chief Steve Neubauer said in the release. “Burglars are entering cars, mostly overnight, to steal things like wallets, credit cards, money, GPS units, smartphones and computer tablets. The good news is there’s a simple way to prevent this from happening — lock your doors and windows.”

A video that includes tips will debut at the National Night Out event and is to be shown regularly on Tinley Park Television, which is the local cable-access channel, as well as being posted on the village’s official YouTube Channel, the release said.

For more information, visit www.tinleypark.org.

Staff report

St. Xavier awarded scholarship money for nursing students

Nursing students at St. Xavier University in Orland Park and Chicago can apply for a share of new scholarship money.

The school recently was notified it will receive nearly $1 million for nursing scholarships from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

The money is coming in the form of two grants. The first totals more than $630,000 and will make scholarships available for nursing students who prove their financial need. The school’s Scholarships for Disadvantaged Students recipients will receive $15,000 each for the upcoming school year.

The second grant, of more than $343,000, will fund traineeships for nursing graduate students. Accepted students will receive $22,000 for the upcoming school year’s tuition, books, fees and stipends, according to a release from St. Xavier.

Staff report

Mokena Park District seeks $6M bond issue

The Mokena Park District will ask voters in November to approve a $6 million bond issue to help fund the proposed expansion of the Oaks Recreation & Fitness Center and to make improvements to the Yunker Farm Park.

The park board recently approved a resolution to place a referendum question about the bond issue on the ballot for the Nov. 4 election.

Taxes would not go up as a result of the bond issue, according to the park district. But residents would not realize a decrease in taxes that would come with the expiration of bonds used to buy the 115-acre farm and build the rec center.

If voters turn down the request, it would reduce the property tax by about $50 a year for the owner of a $300,000 home, park director Jim Romanek previously said. The park district seeks permission to keep the additional amount to make the improvements.

The existing facilities cannot accommodate the growing demand for community activities and programs, according to the park district.

The district for years has explored greater use of Yunker Farm, and plans and public input call for restoring the deteriorating farm buildings, according to the district. Additionally, there would be new garden plots, a water splash pad, a dog park, rest rooms and a band shell with terraced lawn seating for concerts and other events, it said.

Rec center plans call for another gymnasium, two more multipurpose rooms, a longer walking track above the gym, additional rest rooms and increased parking.

For more information on the referendum and proposed projects, visit www.mokenapark.com.

Frank Vaisvilas



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