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WNIJ's summary of news items around our state.

Mississippi River Falls Below Flood Stage

Iowa Flood Center / University of Iowa

Weather officials say the Mississippi River fell below flood stage in two southwestern Illinois cities for the first time in months.

The National Weather Service's Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Services says the river measured below flood stage in Alton and Grafton Friday. That's the first time since early March.

The Belleville News-Democrat reports both cities sustained heavy damage to homes and businesses. Alton officials say it'll cost more than 3-and-a-half million dollars to recover. The cost of damage wasn't available for Grafton. Grafton Mayor Rick Eberlin said the damage will "adversely affect the basic structure of the community."

Illinois counties are evaluating the costs and requesting millions of dollars in federal aid after months of continuous flooding along the Mississippi and Illinois rivers.