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State Farm Warns Homeowners about the 12 Fire Horrors of the Holidays PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Missy Dundov   
Tuesday, 18 December 2012 15:37
December 18, 2012 - The holiday season is the time of year when most people are thinking about shopping for gifts, office parties, and spending time with family and friends. Sadly, this is also the time when home fires peak. Approximately one-third of home fires and home fire deaths occur during December, January and February.
State Farm® reminds consumers that the potential for a home fire is highest during the winter months. A recent survey conducted by Harris Interactive found that nearly 50 percent of Americans age 23 and over increased their chances of a home fire because of decorating for the holidays:
  • 34 percent connect multiple extension cords together
  • 16 percent put up holiday lights without inspecting them for frayed cords
  • 9 percent let their tree dry out after it is decorated in the home
  • 9 percent have lit a fire without an annual chimney inspection
  • 5 percent have left a burning candle unattended
To help keep your family and loved ones safer during the holiday and winter season, learn how to avoid the 12 fire horrors of the holidays.
  1. Cooking Calamities: While November is the top month for grease and cooking-related fires, December is a close second. Unattended cooking remains one of the top causes of home fires. There are a lot of distractions and all it takes is a brief moment for a cooking fire to get out of control. Keep an all-purpose or Class ABC rated fire extinguisher nearby to get a kitchen fire under control.
  2. Space heaters: Home heating equipment is second to cooking fires for causing home structure fires. More than half of home heating fires occur during December, January and February. Avoid setting up a space heater too close to curtains, furniture, or holiday decorations. Remember to keep at least three feet of clear space around it and set it up on the floor unless it is designed for other use.
  3. Children Playing with Fire: The number of fires and deaths caused by children playing with fire goes up significantly during the holidays. Never leave children unsupervised with ignition materials such as matches or lighters.
  4. Burn Wood in the Fireplace: Do not burn trash, cardboard boxes or Christmas trees in the fireplace. These items burn unevenly and may cause a dangerous flash fire.
  5. Caution with Candles: Christmas Day is the peak day of the year for candle fires. Make sure candles are in stable holders and place them where they cannot be easily knocked down. Never leave the house with candles burning.
  6. Holiday Lights: Inspect holiday lights each year for frayed wires, bare spots or broken sockets before putting them up. Remember to turn off holiday lights before leaving the home or going to bed.
  7. Counterfeit Electronics: Christmas lights are the perfect product for counterfeiting – high volume and low manufacturing cost. Look for CSA or UL certification marks that indicate the product was tested and met the product safety standards.
  8. Electrical Outlets: Don’t overload your electrical outlets with too many lights or decorations.
  9. Electrical Cords: To reduce the chance of overheating, electric cords should never be bundled together or run under rugs or carpet.
  10. Christmas Trees: Take fire safety precautions when keeping a live tree in the house. Needles on fresh trees should be green and hard to pull back from the branches. Regularly give the tree plenty of water.
  11. Dirty Chimney: Most chimney fires are caused by the buildup of creosote, a highly combustible by-product of burning wood. To protect your chimney from creosote buildup, have it inspected and cleaned annually.
  12. Dirty Fireplace: When cleaning your fireplace, put embers in a metal container and set them outside to cool for 24 hours before disposal.
About State Farm
State Farm and its affiliates are the largest provider of car insurance in the U.S. and is a leading insurer in Canada. In addition to providing auto insurance quotes, their 17,800 agents and more than 65,000 employees serve 81 million policies and accounts – more than 79 million auto, home, life and health policies in the United States and Canada, and nearly 2 million bank accounts. Commercial auto insurance, along with coverage for renters, business owners, boats and motorcycles, is also available. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company is the parent of the State Farm family of companies. State Farm is ranked No. 43 on the Fortune 500 list of largest companies. For more information, please visit or in Canada

Newtown PDF Print E-mail
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Written by David Axelrod   
Tuesday, 18 December 2012 15:22
Our hearts broke on Friday as we learned of the tragic and senseless deaths of 20 children and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut.

Last night, President Obama addressed the families of Newtown, offering the love and prayers of a nation, and vowing to use whatever power his office holds to protect our children from such unthinkable acts of violence.

He spoke from the heart -- as a president and a parent. Watch this speech:

As we reflect on the lives lost last week, we must also, as the President urged, consider how each of us can play a part in making our country worthy of the memory of those little children.

I hope you and the ones you love have a happy and safe holiday.

Clinton won't testify on the Libya cover-up after all PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Mathew Staver, Chairman Liberty Counsel Action   
Tuesday, 18 December 2012 15:21
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who was originally scheduled to testify to Congress about the Benghazi attacks this Thursday, isn’t going to do so as she is recovering from a concussion purportedly suffered after fainting due to a stomach virus.
Today, the State Department acknowledged that Secretary Clinton is now in possession of an independent Advisory Review Board (ARB) report which is widely thought to contain damaging information about warning signs that were missed or ignored in the run-up to the Benghazi attack that cost four American lives, including that of U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens.
I am outraged that more than three months have passed and we are still in the dark about Benghazi!  Liberty Counsel Action refuses to let Benghazi be swept under the rug by this administration and the liberal media, but we need the help of key members of our team to keep the heat on at this critical time.

Announcing the YouTube Channel! PDF Print E-mail
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Written by   
Tuesday, 18 December 2012 15:12

The Program is proud to announce the launch of our own YouTube channel!

You can now learn how to get the most value out of using by visiting the official YouTube channel at If you already have a YouTube account, you can subscribe to our channel by clicking the "Subscribe" button at the top of the channel page.

The YouTube channel was created to assist you on your path to finding and applying for government benefits. Check back soon for more self-help tutorials on additional site features.

Lt. Governor Simon to celebrate holidays through volunteerism PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - General Info
Written by Kara Beach   
Tuesday, 18 December 2012 15:11

SPRINGFIELD – Lt. Governor Sheila Simon will celebrate the holidays with two volunteer events on Tuesday that reflect her roles as the state’s point person on education reform and chair of the Governor’s Rural Affairs Council.

Simon will visit Lee Elementary School on Tuesday morning to celebrate the holidays with students in an all-school assembly. The students, of varying abilities age 5 to 21, will sing along and play instruments as Simon leads the songs with her banjo.

Tuesday afternoon, Simon and members of her staff will volunteer time at the Central Illinois Food Bank. The volunteers will bag potatoes to be distributed to food pantries throughout central Illinois.

About 15 percent of Illinois’ population is “food insecure,” meaning they don’t have access to enough food to sustain a healthy, active life for all members of the household. A family might not be food insecure at all times, but could forgo other necessities in order to purchase food. Statewide, 22.2 percent of children are food insecure.

“The holiday season is a wonderful time to spend time with family and friends and reflect back on the year, but also an important time to give back to the community,” Simon said. “I encourage everyone to make an effort to do something to give back to their community this holiday season.

Tuesday, December 18


EVENT: Musical assembly at Lee Elementary School

TIME: 11 a.m.

PLACE: Gymnasium, Lee Elementary School, 1201 Bunn Ave., Springfield

NOTE: This event will be for photos and b-roll only.

EVENT: Volunteering at the Central Illinois Food Bank

TIME: 1:15 p.m.

PLACE: Central Illinois Food Bank, 2000 E. Moffat Ave., Springfield


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