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All News Content

Trustee selection change sought

SPRINGFIELD – State Rep. Bill Mitchell, R-Forsyth, has introduced legislation, HB 3832, calling for a return to the election of University of Illinois trustees.

Mitchell, an Eastern Illinois University graduate, said the current system of appointing UI trustees has not provided enough accountability.

Communications task force given three-phase mission

URBANA – A College of Communications task force has been appointed to address the concerns found in a recent assessment of the college, compare it with the five best programs in the country, and come up with a plan for the future that will likely involve some restructuring.

Ron Yates, interim dean of the college and head of the University of Illinois journalism department, announced the members of the task force Wednesday and gave them a written charge for their work over the next few months.

Farm show has soggy ending

HENNING – Sunshine and steady winds out of the southwest had renewed hopes that the 2003 Farm Progress Show would reopen to the public today after Wednesday's show was canceled due to heavy rains, but an additional quarter-inch of rain Wednesday night dashed those hopes.

"We fought a valiant battle, but a losing battle," said Farm Progress Midwest Regional Business Manager Don Tourte at about 10 p.m. Wednesday after deciding that the additional rain would make it impossible to reopen for the final day of the show.

First day offers chance to promote ag products

HENNING – At the Farm Progress Show, companies such as John Deere and New Holland show off their latest and greatest products.

Crowds gathered Tuesday morning and afternoon to marvel at the new, hulking machinery found at the exhibit field and demonstration areas east of Tent City.

Urbana educator lands big grant

URBANA – Kathy Barbour believes children learn history better and enjoy it more if they can connect what they're learning with a world that's familiar to them.

So the Urbana Middle School history teacher applied for a federal grant to teach teachers how to make that connection. She found out Tuesday she has been awarded $717,235 over a three-year period to conduct a project that will pair the middle school with the Urbana Free Library, the Early American Museum at Mahomet and the Champaign County Historical Museum.

Texan changes horses from wild to mild

HENNING – Horse trainer Craig Cameron knows all about the nature of horses, but he knows a lot about human nature, too.

As the 56-year-old Texan stepped into the horse ring Tuesday morning with a 5-year-old, untrained quarter horse, he told the approximately 400 people in the audience that he knew what many of them really hoped to see – a rodeo.

Judge considers motion to toss suit

URBANA – Champaign County Presiding Judge J.G. Townsend said he expects to make a quick ruling on a motion to dismiss a lawsuit brought against Champaign County Clerk Mark Shelden for failing to turn over telephone numbers of registered voters to the State Board of Elections.

Following a court hearing Tuesday morning, Townsend said he will make his ruling in writing at the earliest opportunity.

New judge selected for Champaign County

URBANA – A veteran prosecutor and former Champaign police officer has been selected as Champaign County's newest judge.

Champaign County Presiding Judge J.G. Townsend announced this morning that Charles "Chase" Leonhard, 49, of Champaign, has been selected to fill the associate judgeship being vacated by the upcoming retirement of Ann Einhorn. The judges interviewed 16 candidates Friday; the 13 elected circuit judges from the 6th circuit submitted their written ballots that day to the Administrative Office of the Illinois Courts.

School dealing with rain's aftermath

URBANA – Just when school officials thought they were successfully wrapping up three years of renovations at Urbana Middle School, the rains came.

More than 7 inches of rain Labor Day weekend in fact, a downpour that turned the school's 1950s vintage gym floor – construction technically known as a "floating floor" – into exactly that.

Urbana trustee will have official vote

URBANA – The student trustee from the Urbana campus will have the official vote in a year when the University of Illinois Board of Trustees will be setting future tuition rates and could deal with the Chief Illiniwek issue.

Nate Allen, 21, a senior in urban planning on the Urbana campus, was designated by Gov. Rod Blagojevich on Friday to have the official student vote on the board.