Ben Zigterman

Ben Zigterman

Just Askin' | Low lake levels at Heritage Park

Q: Why is the Champaign Park District draining the lake at Heritage Park off of Bradley Avenue?

A: They're restoring the shoreline, planning director Andrew Weiss said.

"There's still some water in there. It's just at a lower level so we can restore the shoreline," he said.

The work should continue until the end of June or July.

Christensen's lawyers say he's abandoning mental-health defense

PEORIA — Accused kidnapper and killer Brendt Christensen is abandoning his mental-health defense, his lawyers said Friday.

Champaign to consider $35 million in incentives for The Yards

CHAMPAIGN — The city of Champaign is considering contributing $35 million over 18 years to the $250 million project known as The Yards.

When Sam's Club, Costco compete, sales-tax revenue wins

CHAMPAIGN — Both Sam's Club and Costco were founded in 1983, have a membership model and sell their product in bulk.

Each store's fans like to argue which has the better rotisserie chicken.

If and when Costco opens at the Market Place Mall in 2020, pending city council approval of a $2.75 million sales-tax reimbursement deal, it will be less than 2 miles from Sam's Club.

Just Askin' | Summer 2019 road work

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Q: What are the bigger road-construction projects this summer?

A: We spoke with Ken Crawford, the project implementation engineer with Illinois Department of Transportation District 5, about what to expect.

Internet provider Pavlov Media acquires tech-support firm Simplified Computers

CHAMPAIGN — A Champaign-based internet provider for off-campus student housing has bought a Champaign-based tech-support company.

Pavlov Media announced Thursday that it acquired Simplified Computers, which is headquartered at 901 S. Neil St., C.

Simplified will continue to operate out of that location.

UI College of Engineering halts new partnerships with Huawei

CHAMPAIGN — The University of Illinois will stop accepting new partnerships with the Chinese tech firm Huawei, which the U.S. government considers a national-security threat.

The new policy was announced earlier this week in an email to faculty and staff in the College of Engineering.

Attorney general: Toeppen, Suburban Express already violated consent decree

CHAMPAIGN — Suburban Express and owner Dennis Toeppen have allegedly violated a consent decree reached last week with the Illinois attorney general.

According to a motion filed Wednesday morning by the AG seeking a $10,000 fine, Suburban Express posted defamatory webpages of customers and failed to post a nondiscrimination statement everywhere it was required to.

Christensen trial to be livestreamed at Urbana federal courthouse

URBANA — The trial of accused kidnapper and killer Brendt Christensen will be streamed from the courthouse in Peoria to a viewing room at the Urbana courthouse, a recognition of the interest the University of Illinois community has shown in the case.

U.S. District Judge James Shadid approved the closed-circuit video "to accommodate members of the public and the victim's family."

Ex-Busey board member pleads not guilty in college-admissions scandal

CHAMPAIGN — Former Busey board member Elisabeth Meyer Kimmel pleaded not guilty to mail fraud and money laundering, the two charges she's facing in the college-admissions scandal.

Kimmel and several other parents waived their right to appear in court for their arraignments, when charges are formally brought against them and pleas are entered.