Labor Day: The locksmiths

By SUSAN KANTOR/For The News-Gazette

When Denny Birt started working at a locksmith shop in high school, the job was manual.

Smile: You're likely on someone's camera

Although some local officials are reluctant to talk about it, it appears there are at least 2,000 video cameras in operation on public property in Champaign-Urbana.

And literally thousands more cameras will be coming online in the next few years, particularly on the University of Illinois campus.

Civil libertarians seek written policies on cameras' use

The growing use of security cameras in public places is a concern to civil libertarians, according to Esther Patt, president of the Champaign County chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union.

MTD has hundreds of cameras on buses

URBANA – The Champaign-Urbana Mass Transit District is moving full speed ahead into the security camera age, adding hundreds of cameras on its fleet of buses and vans.

Cunningham Avenue reopens

URBANA - Cunningham Avenue in Urbana has reopened after construction workers broke a gas main there Friday morning.

Traffic had been diverted from both north and south between Kerr Avenue and Country Club Drive/Perkins Road.

UI tries parking meters you can pay by cell phone

URBANA – Out of change for the parking meter? Now you can phone it in.

The University of Illinois is starting a test on 200 cell phone-activated meters, said Andy Blacker, a spokesman for the UI's Facilities and Services department.

Quinn announces broadband project for East Central Illinois

DANVILLE – Shiloh schools technology director Terry Sullivan knows firsthand how the lack of broadband Internet access limits what students and teachers can do in and out of the classroom.

FutureGen Alliance offers conditional support for new plan

WASHINGTON – In a carefully worded press release, the FutureGen Alliance board has offered conditional support to the U.S. Department of Energy's revised FutureGen 2.0 project.

Hogan's blog one more way to keep in touch with UI students, staff

URBANA – Meet the newest blogger on campus, who has a big corner office and lots of pull on things like tuition.

Michael Hogan, UI president since July 1, launched his blog this week called "PrezRelease."

Energy audits steer nonprofits toward savings, efficiency

CHAMPAIGN – Ten nonprofit agencies are hoping federally funded energy audits will help them become more efficient and take a chunk out of their utility bills.