All News Content

All News Content

Group seeks to retire Chief in dignified, solemn manner

URBANA – There are rabid and radical Chief opponents. There are rabid and radical Chief supporters.

And somewhere in the middle, there is ActNow.

Teens' murder trial gets started

URBANA – The Freddie McNeal emergency personnel picked up late on Aug. 8 was alert, responsive and didn't particularly want their help. Two hours later that same man was in grave condition needing a higher level of care.

It was the alert Fredrick McNeal, 44, that Willie Barry and Michael J.R. Cooper left at the Mac's Amoco on North Neil Street in Champaign on Aug. 8, said the attorneys defending the men against charges that they murdered Mr. McNeal.

Budget cuts continue for Urbana

URBANA – Digging deeper, Urbana school board members Tuesday identified more jobs and programs to cut to reach their next goal of $750,000, on the way to cutting $1 million in expenses.

The board already had reached a list of budget cuts that totaled $515,000, the first step toward their eventual $1 million goal. Members are expected to approve that list at the board's March 16 meeting.

Women credited for key civil rights victories

URBANA – Women are often cited as the powers behind the throne. When it comes to civil rights leadership, Bernice Barnett will cite you women who not only were behind the throne, but in front, on top and right alongside it.

Take Brown v. Board of Education, the landmark civil rights case that struck down the separate-but-equal clause that had defined the treatment of blacks in public schools since the 1800s.

County 911 can now trace cellphone calls

URBANA – Emergency dispatchers were able recently to track down a call from a woman who was involved in a fight with her husband, thanks to improvements in the local 911 system.

Greg Abbott, 911 coordinator for the Metropolitan Computer-Aided Dispatch service in Urbana, said Monday that cellphone users now have a new level of 911 access available.

Changes to put middle schools on same page

CHAMPAIGN – Carol Stack faced formidable issues when she examined Champaign middle school programs to see how they could be standardized.

For one thing, day length and class length at the three Unit 4 middle schools were all different. For another, the schools all offered different types of math instruction and at one school, Jefferson, the foreign language program was completely different from those at Edison and Franklin.

Urbana endorses tram idea

URBANA – Urbana City Council members, unlike their counterparts in Champaign, decided Monday night they aren't willing to give up yet on a proposed $178 million tram project.

Urbana aldermen voted 5-2 to endorse a fixed guideway or tram system as the locally preferred alternative for improving the local mass transit system, and to support the Champaign-Urbana Mass Transit District's efforts to apply for federal funding for continued study of engineering, design and costs and benefits of such a system.

Monticello hopes to put trail proposal in motion

MONTICELLO – The city of Monticello hopes to acquire a stretch of an abandoned railroad bed as the first part of a proposal hiking and biking trail linking Monticello with Allerton Park.

If the initial project succeeds, recreation enthusiasts hope to extend the trail northeast to White Heath and dream of eventually extending it further east to Champaign-Urbana and on to Kickapoo State Park near Danville.

Gleeful Illini fans party like it's 1952

SAVOY – It was a celebration 52 years in the making, and Illinois fans did it up right Sunday night when welcoming home their Big Ten Conference champion Illinois men's basketball team.

"Fifty-two years is a long time, but we finally pulled it off," Illinois junior guard Luther Head told a spirited crowd – estimated by one Flightstar charter company official to be about 1,500 people – that flocked to Willard Airport after the Illini clinched the title outright for the first time since 1952 with a 64-63 victory against Ohio State.

Carle plans to eliminate smoking on campuses

URBANA – In the spirit of setting a good example and creating the healthiest possible environment for staff, patients and visitors, Carle Foundation Hospital and Carle Clinic say they'll be kicking smoking all the way off their campuses starting Sept. 1.

That means smokers who wants to light up on a Carle property won't only have to leave the buildings to do so. They'll have to leave the grounds.