Home-based gun business in Philo draws some objections

PHILO – A village decision in March to let a gun business open in a private home has prompted the objections of some residents.

Philo resident Terry McFall on Wednesday gave the village board a petition with 49 signatures of people asking the board to reconsider its decision to allow Sean Talbott to conduct a firearms sales and repair business out of a home he is renting at 105 W. Madison St.

Autumn Glen residents in Rantoul making plans to move out

RANTOUL – Many residents of Autumn Glen apartments in Rantoul have started looking for a new place to live.

They believe the closing of the apartment complex is inevitable.

GEO-UI talks going to federal mediation

URBANA – The Graduate Employees' Organization and the University of Illinois will seek help from a federal mediator after a second session of talks Tuesday failed to find a resolution.

Peter Campbell, the GEO's communications officer, said his organization expected to file paperwork in the next few days for the mediation.

Associate director picked for research park

CHAMPAIGN – Laura Frerichs has been named associate director of the University of Illinois Research Park and its business incubator, EnterpriseWorks, effective June 16.

Vermilion Advantage official says firms are looking at Danville

DANVILLE – With more than a dozen new business prospects considering Vermilion County for development, Vermilion Advantage's Vicki Haugen believes it's a sign that cautious optimism in the economy is growing.

Forums to be held on creating plan for broadband program

URBANA – Public forums will be held on creation of a local plan for a possible high-speed Internet program in Champaign-Urbana.

The Broadband Access Committee of the Champaign-Urbana Cable Television and Telecommunications Commission will host the first forum at 10 a.m. Saturday at the Lewis Auditorium of the Urbana Free Library, 210 W. Green St., U. Another forum is set for 7 p.m. May 21 at the Champaign Public Library, 200 W. Green St., C.

Madoff whistleblower saves vitriol for SEC in UI talk

URBANA – A fraud investigator who tracked Bernie Madoff's dealings for years said he believes the Ponzi scheme perpetrator had more victims outside than United States than in, and more non-Jewish victims than Jewish.

Harry Markopolos, who repeatedly tried to warn the Securities & Exchange Commission about Madoff, called the rogue investor "a monster," but saved some of his toughest invective for the federal agency that failed to stop Madoff.

Urbana liquor license fees will increase in July

URBANA – The city council Monday approved increasing a variety of city fees by an average of 4.5 percent, effective July 1. But aldermen held off on imposing a big increase in the annual fee for ambulance companies.

The city had been considering increasing the annual ambulance service fee from the current $150 to $15,000, but opted to hold off on the increase at the urging of Alderwoman Heather Stevenson, R-Ward 6. She said Champaign, which had proposed a $20,000 annual fee for ambulance companies, is still looking into the issue.

Two new Farmer City Council members sworn in

FARMER CITY – The two newest members of the Farmer City Council were sworn in at Monday's meeting after members thanked retiring member Ted "Jed" Reynolds for his six years of service. Former council member Carl "Chico" Parr, defeated in his bid for re-election, was not present at the final meeting of the current council.

New members Michelle Monaghan and Donald "Mac" Harden were given the oath of office by city Clerk Sandy Shaw. Being a city council member is the first public office for either.

Group from St. Joseph, Ogden area striking up community band

ST. JOSEPH – A local organization plans to create a Community Summer Band open to anyone in the area.

The band will rehearse in St. Joseph, but is open to anyone in junior high or older who can read music and is willing to practice and perform with the group.