Carle Foundation Hospital gets go-ahead to build addition

URBANA – Construction should begin by early next year on a $236 million addition to the main Urbana campus of Carle Foundation Hospital.

The hospital won state approval Tuesday for the nine-story addition from the Illinois Health Facilities Planning Board. The state panel voted 4-0 to approve the project, which will be next to the hospital's north tower.

Danville committee approves new billing for garbage, sewer

DANVILLE – City officials moved closer Tuesday night to changing the way residents are billed for sewer and garbage services.

By a 4-2 vote, the Danville City Council's public works committee approved a five-year contract with the Danville Sanitary District to take over billing for sewer and garbage services. Alderman Rick Strebing, Ward 2, and Alderman Terry Baldwin, Ward 4, voted against the proposed contract.

State approves $236 million Carle expansion in Urbana

URBANA – Carle Foundation Hospital won state approval Tuesday to go ahead with construction of a nine-story, $236 million addition to its main Urbana campus.

The Illinois Health Facilities Planning Board voted 4-0 to approve the project, which will be next to the hospital's north tower.

Comcast to begin carrying Big Ten Network on Aug. 15

URBANA – Comcast cable subscribers who are fans of Big Ten sports can soon get their kicks on Channel 66.

Beginning Friday, Comcast will carry the Big Ten Network as part of its expanded basic lineup, with the network airing on Channel 66, said Melody Brucker, Comcast's Champaign-Urbana District director.

Urbana councilman was fiercely devoted to constituents

URBANA – Joseph Whelan was known to most Urbana residents as Mr. Republican, the only elected Republican in Urbana city government for many of his 26 years of service on the city council.

But to his two granddaughters, he was the man behind "the candy tree."

Truancy-reduction effort to begin Sept. 23 in Champaign

CHAMPAIGN – Some Champaign parents could answer their doors this fall and find the superintendent, a school board member or a teacher standing outside.

They will be there to remind parents and their children how important it is to attend school every day.

Teen pleads innocent to weapons charges in shooting

URBANA – A Champaign teenager Monday pleaded innocent to weapons charges stemming from a shooting in Champaign.

Dequaun Clark, 17, who listed an address in the 800 block of West Harvard Street, was arraigned and his public defender entered the pleas to a Class 1 felony charge of aggravated discharge of a firearm and a Class 4 felony charge of reckless discharge of a firearm.

Roof repairs under way at Georgetown-Ridge Farm High

GEORGETOWN – A leaky section of the Georgetown-Ridge Farm High School gymnasium roof appears to be fixed, Superintendent Kevin Tate told the school board Monday, and two other sections should be fixed in the near future.

Tate said the problems occur around the heating and cooling units on the school roof. The older units were replaced 13 years ago with smaller, more efficient units. Because of the size difference, Tate said, foam rubber pads were put around the bases of the units. Those pads have deteriorated over time, he said.

Champaign library hosting Home School Fair on Aug. 16

CHAMPAIGN – Parents who home-school their children can meet each other and learn where to find help at a "Home School Fair" this weekend at the Champaign Public Library.

The free event will be from 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday at the library, 200 W. Green St., C.

Close to 25 percent of First Busey borrowers are in Florida

URBANA – Nearly one-quarter of First Busey Corp.'s loans are to borrowers in southwest Florida, the Urbana-based bank holding company disclosed in its quarterly report to the Securities & Exchange Commission last week.

Altogether, the company has $756.2 million in loans in southwest Florida, or 23.9 percent of its total loan portfolio of $3.12 billion, according to the report filed last Friday.