All Other Content

All Other Content

UI offers voluntary separation to some employees

URBANA – Some University of Illinois employees are getting an offer in their e-mail – early separation agreements, worth up to $75,000, but they have to make up their minds soon.

Only the Urbana campus is looking at the program, chief spokesman Tom Hardy said Thursday.

Jobless rate declines in Champaign County, up elsewhere

Champaign County's unemployment rate dropped slightly in December, but the rates for most other area counties went up.

While Champaign County's rate slipped to 8.4 percent, down from 8.5 percent in November, Vermilion County's rate rose to 12.5 percent, up from 12.1 percent.

Area update

area update

Furnace blamed in

MELVIN – A malfunctioning furnace is believed to have caused a fire that heavily damaged a two-story country home west of Melvin on Tuesday afternoon.

Skepticism increases over Big Broadband

CHAMPAIGN – Amid growing questions surrounding the $31 million "Big Broadband" proposal, Mayor Jerry Schweighart on Wednesday said there may have been enough votes to kill the project – or at least its current form – before this week's city council meeting.

"It may be something that we need, but not now," Schweighart said. "Just the economy is not right to take on this kind of project."

Illinois universities to issue budget plea

URBANA – University presidents across Illinois plan to send a common plea to state legislators in coming days: work with us to fix the state's budget crisis, and stick to a payment plan.

Area update

area update

Long-awaited Homer sewer project to start this spring

HOMER – Homer will finally get its sewer.

Now nine years in the planning, construction of a sewage treatment plant and sewer system will begin this April, with a two-year timeline to completion.

Police meticulously search for 'why' in double slaying

Two years after two best friends were found brutally slain in the Edgar County home of one of the men, authorities remain mystified as to who killed them and why.

Agents from the Illinois State Police, especially Kim Cessna, probably know more about Ryan Riddell and Mark Prasse, both 32, than many of their closest friends did.

Cessna, the lead special agent on a case that has been touched by many detectives, estimates she's talked to more than 300 people since the friends were found in Mr. Prasse's rural Chrisman home on Jan. 28, 2008, the apparent targets of one or more killers.

DACC trustees ponder moving funds to pay some bills

DANVILLE – Danville Area Community College officials said the college needs to borrow money from its internal "bank" so that the college can pay its bills.

On Tuesday, trustees will vote on transferring about $4.43 million from the working cash fund to the education and operations and maintenance funds.

Harsh reality: State's IOUs to school districts adding up

As state woes continue, officials worry about shortfall – and that major program, staffing cuts will have to follow

Some area students will have to forgo field trips this semester and make do with old textbooks and computers instead of getting new ones.

20 from Champaign County part of release program

URBANA – State's Attorney Julia Rietz said she's aware of 20 inmates from Champaign County who won early release, and that information came from Dan Hynes' campaign staff.

"We are supposed to receive notice when people are released," Rietz said. "We do receive notices, but they don't have a big highlighted line saying this person is part of the governor's early release program."