All Politics and Government Content

Blagojevich unveils patient safety plan

Gov. Rod Blagojevich issued an executive order on Thursday creating a new Division of Patient Safety and proposed computerizing prescriptions to help prevent errors.

"If we're successful, our patient safety plan will save money because it will reduce the costs that come with treating medical errors," the governor stated in a written release. "But far more importantly, it will save lives."


Hire postponed after Vermilion County Board meeting issue

DANVILLE – Vermilion Manor Nursing Home Administrator Joan Darr must wait at least a month to fill a proposed assistant director's position after county board members failed Tuesday to vote on the issue over concerns with the Open Meetings Act.

Items on a supplemental agenda, including the assistant administrator's position, were questioned at Tuesday night's county board meeting.


Electronic voting proposal rejected

RANTOUL – The Rantoul Village Board has rejected a proposal that would allow board members to take part and vote at meetings from the comfort of their own homes, from work or other remote locations.

Board members Tuesday night shot down a proposed policy that would allow board members to vote by telephone or by electronic means in cases of personal illness or disability, employment purposes or "family or other emergency situations."


Champaign city council will address vacant seat

CHAMPAIGN – Champaign Mayor Jerry Schweighart is wondering if the Champaign City Council, which saw itself bitterly divided over the smoking ban issue, can come together on appointing a replacement for Kathy Ennen, who resigned from the council effective June 30.

But two other council members say they think five council members will be able to agree on a replacement for Ennen, who is moving with her husband to Southport, N.C.


Electronic voting to be considered in Rantoul

RANTOUL – The Rantoul Village Board is considering a proposal to allow trustees to take part and vote at board meetings electronically without being physically present at the village hall.

Village Clerk Jeremy Reale has asked the board to consider a policy allowing board members to vote by telephone or by electronic means in cases of personal illness or disability, employment purposes or "family or other emergency situations."


Mahomet soldier's death still haunts family

MAHOMET – In kindergarten, Sierra Cawvey wrote e-mails to her mother, who was away driving trucks and Humvees with the National Guard in Iraq.

The 5-year-old didn't write many words, but what she said got right to the point.


Rental registry proposal irks Urbana landlords

URBANA – It's just a draft ordinance, subject to future changes. But a proposed rental registration and systematic inspection program in Urbana is already drawing heat from landlords.

The Urbana City Council, as the committee of the whole, will discuss the draft starting at 7 p.m. Monday at the Urbana City Building, 400 S. Vine St.


Madigan seeking audit of water company

SPRINGFIELD – Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan wants the Illinois Commerce Commission to audit Illinois American Water's statewide billing, metering and customer service operations, she announced on Wednesday.

"Illinois American's customers deserve the best possible service for the rates they pay," Madigan stated in a written release. "Our investigation revealed that these customers cannot rely on the billing they receive and that customer service follow-up is inadequate."


State law protects cell phone records

SPRINGFIELD – Illinois is one of the first states to criminalize cell phone "pretexting," the practice of using false pretenses to obtain another person's calling records.

Gov. Rod Blagojevich signed SB 2554 on Wednesday, and the law will take effect on Jan. 1, 2007.


Champaign-Urbana bar owners unite to fight smoking ban

CHAMPAIGN – Local bar owners are organizing to fight a smoking ban in Champaign-Urbana and to represent their interests on other city issues.

An organizational meeting for the CU Bar Owners Association at Memphis on Main Street, 55 E. Main St., C, attracted about 18 bar owners and representatives. About 50 liquor license holders were invited.