Adalberto Toledo

Adalberto Toledo

Champaign council to study lowering fines for pot possession

CHAMPAIGN — The Champaign City Council is putting in motion a process that could lead to lower fines for adults in possession of cannabis, similar to an initiative launched in Urbana two years ago.

Parkland plans convocation Aug. 23 ahead of start of fall semester

CHAMPAIGN — To kick off the new academic year, Parkland College is inviting all new and returning students for an informal introduction to their new school.

Starting at 11 a.m. Au. 23, students can sign up for clubs, tie-dye T-shirts at an art table and eat for free, all while listening to music from the college's student-run radio station, WPCD-FM.

Rauner's new innovation/technology department in place, on the job

When Gov. Bruce Rauner first came into office, he said, his team saw the state's technology systems were "grossly neglected" and set off on a mission to fix them.

In 2016, he signed an executive order creating the Illinois Department of Innovation and Technology. Late last month, that department became a full-fledged agency of the state.

Amazing Grace: Inspired by dad's situation, daughter pushes through state legislation

GIBSON CITY — Wherever she turned, it seemed, people tried to lower Grace Lattz's expectations.

You're so young. Well, you can try. Don't expect too much.

Then 15 years old, she remembers hearing the same phrases over and over as she ran around the Capitol in Springfield with her self-made business cards, setting up appointments with lawmakers' schedulers and talking to doormen.

Area farmers want free trade, not bail-out

Soybean farmers may get some relief from recent tariffs as the Department of Agriculture makes available $12 billion in temporary federal aid, President Donald Trump announced this week.

Records show ICE activity on rise in Champaign County since 2016

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Over the past several months, local protesters have decried Immigration and Customs Enforcement activity in the area that has led to multiple arrests and intensified the fears of many undocumented people living here.

Newly signed gun-law reforms have both fans, foes

SPRINGFIELD — Champions of gun-law reforms say a bill requiring a three-day waiting period for all firearm purchases, signed into law this week by Gov. Bruce Rauner, is "common-sense reform" that will make Illinois a safer state.

Election 2018: Story-lines emerging

In under four months, we'll know whether the Governor's Mansion — set for a grand reopening Saturday after $15 million in privately funded upgrades — will remain the home of BRUCE and DIANA RAUNER come 2019. A few story-lines we'll be following between now and Election Day, Nov. 6, courtesy of staff writer Adalberto Toledo:

Area farmers say they'll play it safe amid potential trade war

Some central Illinois farmers said they are wary about making any big investments in the near future after fears of a trade war with China became reality Friday, with President Donald Trump imposing 25 percent tariffs on $34 billion worth of goods from that country.

Forecast for early July: More mugginess, just like June

The local forecast for early July? Think June — only stickier and stormier. With more muggy weather on the way, staff writer ADALBERTO TOLEDO takes a look back at last month and a quick peek ahead, by-the-numbers style: