25-cent boost to state minimum-wage kicks in today

CHAMPAIGN – A 25-cent boost in the state minimum wage takes effect today. For those working a 40-hour week, that means an extra $2 a day or an extra $10 a week.

For adults, the minimum wage rises from $7.75 an hour to $8 an hour. For youths under 18, the minimum jumps from $7.25 an hour to $7.50 an hour.

Poker run scheduled to help Danville food pantry

DANVILLE – The Danville Firefighters Local 429 and the Friendly Tavern will sponsor a poker run July 11 to raise money for the Danville Area Food Pantry.

Registration begins at 10 a.m. at the Friendly Tavern, 216 E. South St., with the ride beginning at noon. Participants will visit four sites and then return to the Friendly for the fifth card in the hand. The rider with the best hand will win $500. Riders may pre-register at the Friendly from July 6 through 10. Entry fee is $15 with additional card hands available for $5 each.

Current, ex-UI law deans respond to 'Cloutgate' articles

The current and former deans of the University of Illinois College of Law have sent letters recently responding to coverage of special admissions practices recorded in e-mails at the college.

The examination of influence on admissions reaches other colleges at the UI, but many e-mails in 123 pages recently released by the UI focused on admissions to the law school.

AmerenIP announces plans for 138,000-volt power line

URBANA – The public will help determine where a 138,000-volt power line proposed by AmerenIP will go.

That would supply enough power for a city of 20,000 to 40,000 homes, according to the Illinois Commerce Commission.

Dueling pianos go silent in Urbana

URBANA — Monday marked the swan song for 88 Broadway.

Ameren plans new line for southwest UI campus

URBANA -- AmerenIP officials will be meeting with local officials and the
public to discuss the best route for a new transmission line to provide
electrical power for the southwest campus at the University of Illinois.

New 250,000-gallon water tower dedicated in Philo

PHILO – When Sharon Rhoton first learned of plans to build a new village water tower next to her home, she was upset.

"We thought it was going to mess up our property value," Rhoton said.

But as part of the audience on Monday at a pipe-cutting ceremony marking the completion of the water tower's construction, Rhoton now has nothing but good things to say about Aqua Illinois and the project.

Casey's drops Urbana site after neighborhood opposition

URBANA – Casey's General Store has dropped plans to build a new store in east Urbana after facing vigorous neighborhood opposition.

Urbana and Champaign County planning officials both confirmed Monday that Casey's earlier this month withdrew a county petition to rezone a 1-acre piece of property at 2218 E. University Ave., where the company wanted to build a new 3,588-square-foot store. The site is adjacent to the Edge-Scott Fire Protection District headquarters.

Hearing Tuesday on face-lift for University Avenue

CHAMPAIGN — The public is invited to a hearing Tuesday where plans for a facelift for the University Avenue corridor — from State Street in Champaign on the west to Maple Street in Urbana on the east — will be presented.

5 area companies among Inc.'s 5,000 fastest-growing

CHAMPAIGN – Five area companies appear on Inc. magazine's most recent list of the 5,000 fastest-growing firms in the United States.

Making the 2008 list were: Dawson Logistics of Danville; Midwest Underground Technology, Scitec and Isotech Laboratories, all of Champaign, and Hutchcraft Van Service of Urbana.