All C-U Citizen Access Content

All C-U Citizen Access Content

University of Illinois students get hands-on lesson on poverty from United Way

URBANA – Nearly 1.7 million Illinoisans, or 13.3 percent of the state's population, live in poverty.

In Champaign County, the number is far higher: 21.3 percent. Next door, in Vermilion County, nearly a quarter of the residents are considered poor, living on $24,000 or less for a family of four.

Federal food aid usage rises

Champaign native Miesha Jones spends the $315 a month she receives in federal food assistance benefits at Sam's Club.

Jones, the single mother of a 3-year-old daughter, usually takes her monthly shopping trip to the bulk shopping club or, on occasion, Wal-Mart.

SNAP basics

Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program – SNAP – benefits are provided through an electronic card system, much like a debit card.

They can be used to buy most food or food products, including fresh, locally grown fruits and vegetables at farmers' markets across Illinois.

Other foods that SNAP benefits can buy include:

County board takes first step on Wilber Heights

By DANIEL PETRELLA and PAM G. DEMPSEY

URBANA – The Champaign County Board took the first step Tuesday toward allowing residents of the Wilber Heights neighborhood to rebuild or make substantial improvements to their properties.

Wilber Heights proves attractive to businesses

Wilber Heights has proved attractive to businesses because of its lower property taxes and lower traffic congestion. Because Wilber Heights is in an unincorporated area, city property taxes are not assessed.

Zoning official seeks regulatory changes for Wilber Heights area

A Champaign County zoning official plans to propose regulatory changes for the Wilber Heights neighborhood that will combat the deterioration of residential properties.

A short history of Wilber Heights

1928: Wilber Heights developed as a single-family residential development. No zoning in place when homes are built.

1973: County zoning ordinance takes effect; Wilber Heights zoning is split between light industry and heavy industry. Homes become nonconforming and limits are placed on renovation and rehabilitation.

Wilber Heights: Neighborhood hangs on against the odds

By LIZ CLANCY LERNER/For The News-Gazette

Construction trade programs aim to assist minorities

Every Saturday, for 20 weeks, 46 men and women reported to the Physical Plant Service Building on the University of Illinois campus at 7:30 a.m. and worked until 3:30 p.m. Some stayed afterward to continue working; a few even showed up early for the same reason.