Daily dose: Local history, Frerichs/Bambenek, Gill gets boost from DCCC
In 1912, Chief of Police Keller and Officer Dodsworth arrested Warren L. Smith for keeping a disorderly house and later found that Smith had a quantity of ground opium on him. Smith, of 22 S. Oak St., is supposed to be a confirmed opium fiend. He is smoking the narcotic poison with tobacco in self-manufactured cigarettes.
In 1962, Congressman William L. Springer, R-Champaign, sharply criticized the Food and Drug Administration for its action to bar the sale and use of fish protein concentrate in the United States on “aesthetic” grounds. The FDA called the high protein food concentrate “filthy” because it is made from whole ground fish. Springer called the FDA action “big brother government at its very worst.” Ezra Levin of the Monticello-based Viobin Corp. had pioneered methods for production of fish protein concentrate to fulfill a vision of feeding impoverished people.
Sen. Frerichs' cousin cited in campaign ad
Excerpted from Wednesday's News-Gazette column ...
Sen. Mike Frerichs, D-Champaign, who is up for re-election this fall, was targeted last week in an online political ad by his opponent, Champaign Republican John Bambenek.
Bambenek’s ad said that Frerichs’ “bad economic policies are driving businesses in the 52nd District” out of Illinois.
“Businesses such as Gayle Frerichs Trucking, formerly of Urbana and owned by Frerichs’ relatives, have left the area for places such as Covington, Indiana,” Bambenek’s ad said.
Both Gayle Frerichs and Mike Frerichs agree they are distant cousins.
“We never did go to the same Christmas or birthday parties or anything like that,” said Gayle Frerichs. Mike Frerichs estimated he has talked to his cousin four times in the last 14 years.
Gayle Frerichs, who lives in Tuscola but drives 60 miles one-way to his company headquarters in Covington, said he didn’t like to get thrown into the middle of a political campaign. But he confirmed many of Bambenek’s points about Illinois and its business climate.
He said he saved between $90,000 and $100,000 a year by moving his business to Indiana. Much of the saving was in reduced workers compensation costs, but he also has lower costs in taxes, license plates and health care for his 20 or so employees.
Gayle Frerichs said he resented the way Bambenek made him part of the campaign.
“Here’s a guy who is running for office and is, what I would consider pushing the truth. But yet, could he call me to find out why I moved or what the truth is? No,” Gayle Frerichs said. “So what is he more concerned about? He’s more concerned about beating his opponent and getting his job over there than he is about changing things.”
Gayle Frerichs said he had been looking into moving his business out of Illinois for some time.
“But the final straw was when Illinois raised its income taxes. That did it for me,” he said.
DCCC now says Gill can win in the 13th Congressional District