Daily Dose: Local history; Bankruptcy for states?; Yes, it is cold; Rahm's big bucks; Concealed carry in Illinois; Bad visit to C-U for Spartans

Daily Dose: Local history; Bankruptcy for states?; Yes, it is cold; Rahm's big bucks; Concealed carry in Illinois; Bad visit to C-U for Spartans

Local history

In 1911, official of the Wabash Railroad have decided what kind of depot they will erect west of the old structure facing Randolph Street. It has been designed after a depot in Columbia, Mo., built of native rock with Bedford cut stone trimmings and a red tile roof. It will be 125 feet long and 25 feet wide. It will face west with the office in the south end of the building.

In 1961, the Champaign County chapter of the Reserve Officers Association is urging the University of Illinois to continue compulsory military training. A committee appointed by UI President David Henry has recommended that compulsory ROTC be discontinued and placed on a voluntary basis.

Congress looking at ways to allow states to declare bankruptcy?

From the New York Times ..

For now, the fear of destabilizing the municipal bond market with the words “state bankruptcy” has proponents in Congress going about their work on tiptoe. No draft bill is in circulation yet, and no member of Congress has come forward as a sponsor, although Senator John Cornyn, a Texas Republican, asked the Federal Reserve chairman, Ben S. Bernanke, about the possiblity in a hearing this month.

House Republicans, and Senators from both parties, have taken an interest in the issue, with nudging from bankruptcy lawyers and a former House speaker, Newt Gingrich, who could be a Republican presidential candidate. It would be difficult to get a bill through Congress, not only because of the constitutional questions and the complexities of bankruptcy law, but also because of fears that even talk of such a law could make the states’ problems worse.

Lawmakers might decide to stop short of a full-blown bankruptcy proposal and establish instead some sort of oversight panel for distressed states, akin to the Municipal Assistance Corporation, which helped New York City during its fiscal crisis of 1975.


Cold weather

Today's official low temperature of 6 degrees below zero was the lowest reading in Champaign-Urbana since Jan. 10, 2010, when it was 8 below zero.

If this month seems especially bad you must have a short memory. Last January was even worse with a mean temperature for the month of 19.9 degees. So far this month the mean temperature, according to the Illinois Sate Water Survey, is 22.1 degrees.

Snowfall so far this month is 6.9 inches. Average for the month is 8.6 inches, so we're about normal with about 10 daysd left in the month.

Here's the good news: meteorologically speaking we've passed the worst of winter. The coldest days of the year around here are, on the average, Jan. 9, 10 and 11 when the average high is 30 and the average low is 15. Today's average highs and lows are 33 and 18.

Also, today's the last day for the sunset to come before 5 p.m. On Saturday the sun rises at 7:10 a.m. and sets at 5 p.m.

Rahm's big bucks

From the Chicago Sun-Times ...

Rahm Emanuel took in an eye-popping $11.7 million for his Chicago mayoral campaign in just three months, notching big contributions from Chicago’s business community, Hollywood heavyweights and other out-of-state donors.

The Chicago Mercantile Exchange gave Emanuel $200,000, records released Thursday show. He also took in $100,000 apiece from wealthy Chicago businessmen James Crown and Fred Eychaner, plus another $100,000 from Hollywood mogul David Geffen, $75,000 from film director Steven Spielberg and $50,000 from Apple CEO Steve Jobs.

In all, Emanuel — President Obama’s former chief of staff — had raised more than $10.5 million as of Dec. 31, records show. He also transferred more than $1.1 million from the federal campaign account he used when was a Northwest Side congressman.


Last concealed carry holdout?

From Milwaukee Magazine ...

Soon, Illinois may be the only state in the country where there is no legal avenue for residents, besides police officers, to carry a concealed weapon. With a recent nod of support from Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, its legalization is beginning to sound like a sure thing. But pro and anti-gun forces are still getting ready to fight over the exact details of the legislation.

This state has long been a hold-out on concealed carry. The state Legislature passed a bill in 2005 that would have creating a permitting process, but Gov. Jim Doyle vetoed it. Now, with Republican control of the State Senate and Assembly, Gov. Scott Walker is signaling he would support a similar bill.

This is what Walker said last week, according to the LaCrosse Tribune: “The facts tend to show that across the country laws, particularly like the one in Minnesota, have had a positive impact … and the problems that some have raised as concerns … in Wisconsin, just haven’t materialized.”


Spartans had a bad time in Champaign-Urbana

From Detroit Free Press ...

Michigan State's chartered jet couldn't take off  from University of Illinois Willard Airport late  Tuesday night because of a shortage of deicing
fluid. So Tom Izzo and his team were bused back to East Lansing.
"It was awful," Izzo said Thursday after practice, back home but still recovering. "It wasn't as good as Division II, we had the upstairs (of the bus) so (Mike Garland) and I used it to go up there and lay down."
If nothing else, said Izzo, the all-night trip gave him time to think and watch film. MSU played well against Illinois but faded down the stretch
-- Izzo joked that the bus trip was a reward. Yet he admitted he saw some things to build.
"I got something out of it," Izzo said of the time, "but getting in at 4:35 a.m. wasn't fun."









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