Smith: Voters seem OK with sheriff hopeful's independent label

CHAMPAIGN – The woman backing out of the driveway in the upscale Republican neighborhood in southwest Champaign rolled down the window and asked the candidate going door-to-door whether he was a Democrat or a Republican.

"An independent," answered Jerommie Smith.

"That's a good answer," she smiled before driving away.

UI asks Chief group to stop use of name, old logo

CHAMPAIGN – The University of Illinois, through a Chicago lawyer, is telling the Honor the Chief Society to cease and desist in its attempts to trademark some Chief Illiniwek items, possibly affecting an upcoming homecoming performance.

Two sales tax hikes on ballot in Iroquois County

PAXTON – Iroquois County voters will decide the fate of two separate proposals to raise the county's sales tax rate on the Nov. 2 ballot. One would support public safety, while the other would help fund building and maintenance projects at the county's schools.

7th Annual Unity March

The 7th annual CU Citizen's for Peace and Justice "Unity" march in Champaign on Friday Oct. 9, 2010. Several hundred people participated in the march, which marked the first anniversary of Kiwane Carrington's death.

Man killed in one-vehicle Danville crash

DANVILLE – A single-vehicle crash killed a Danville man on Saturday.

Jeremy R. Beasley, 29, was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash at 8:44 a.m., according to Vermilion County Coroner Peggy Johnson.

Beasley went off the roadway on Oakwood Avenue west of Avenue G coming to rest near the railroad tracks, she said.

Local dealers ready for Ford's revamped Lincoln brand

CHAMPAIGN – Charlie Shapland says Ford Motor Co. is "headed the right direction" in seeking to reinvigorate its Lincoln brand, but accomplishing it won't be "an overnight fix."

Shapland is president of Worden-Martin Inc., which has the Ford-Lincoln-Mercury franchise in Champaign.

Landmark designation for Lincoln Hotel back on Urbana council's agenda

URBANA – City council members again are scheduled to discuss a historic-landmark designation for the Lincoln Hotel in downtown Urbana, a decision that a month ago was put off to allow for more public input.

The discussion will happen during the city council's committee-of-the-whole meeting, set for 7 p.m. Monday in the Urbana City Building, 400 S. Vine St.

Volunteers revamp Hazel Park with new playground, picnic sets

CHAMPAIGN – Hazel Park on Friday started as a flat stretch of dirt, but about seven hours and 300 volunteers later, it became a place to play for the 500 children in the surrounding neighborhood.

Champaign school district plans meeting on new site for Central

CHAMPAIGN – The Champaign school district will begin talking next week with community members about possible sites for a new Central High School.

The school district will hold an informational meeting at 5:30 p.m. Thursday in the library lecture hall at Central High School, 610 W. University Ave., C.

Union official scores hit with 'Matt the Welder' ad for Quinn

SAVOY – One day, said Matt Langendorf, he and other members of the political action committee of Plumbers and Pipefitters Local Union 149 in Savoy were bemoaning the television commercials for Republican gubernatorial candidate Bill Brady.