Court records give girlfriend's account of death

MONTICELLO – Drug use appears to be a common theme in the death of an Urbana man whose body was found Sunday in a field in Piatt County.

Two men have been charged with the murder of John E. Tash, 40, who lived at 1918 Brownfield Road.

Champaign-Urbana bar owners unite to fight smoking ban

CHAMPAIGN – Local bar owners are organizing to fight a smoking ban in Champaign-Urbana and to represent their interests on other city issues.

An organizational meeting for the CU Bar Owners Association at Memphis on Main Street, 55 E. Main St., C, attracted about 18 bar owners and representatives. About 50 liquor license holders were invited.

Area Osco stores to be converted

CHAMPAIGN – CVS Corp. plans to convert Osco stores in central Illinois to CVS stores, with new signs going up in early July and remodeling starting in late summer or early fall, a CVS spokesman said.

Osco has two stores in Champaign and one each in Urbana, Danville, Charleston and Mattoon. There's no word yet whether any of those stores might close. The Danville Osco at 904 N. Gilbert St. is only a few blocks away from a CVS store at 820 N. Vermilion St.

City council's Bruno wants ban to take effect Aug. 15

CHAMPAIGN – Champaign City Council member Tom Bruno says he doesn't want to wait until the end of January to implement a citywide indoor public smoking ban.

The veteran council member said he's prepared to put forward an amendment separating Champaign's smoking ban from that of Urbana, making Champaign's effective Aug. 15.

Board's vote on mold issue last week questioned

URBANA – The Champaign County Board violated the state's Open Meetings Act last week, according to a veteran attorney.

On Thursday, the board went into executive session, came out to open session and passed a resolution calling for binding arbitration with the Farnsworth Group, PKD Inc. and Otto Baum for mold remediation, in accordance with construction industry arbitration rules of the American Arbitration Association.

Governor signs co-op measure

Gov. Rod Blagojevich signed legislation late last week that would help defray costs for smaller districts seeking to form cooperative high schools.

While school consolidation is still highly controversial, the cooperative high school option allows districts to maintain their own elementary and middle schools while forming a single, larger high school. Several area districts have considered the idea, but a lack of state help with the costs of such mergers has been an obstacle.

Urbana library's executive director will retire in May

URBANA – Fred Schlipf, who has been the Urbana Free Library's executive director since August 1974 and who recently oversaw a major library expansion, is planning to retire next year.

Schlipf, 64, said he will step down next May. The 10 months of lead time will give the library board plenty of time to have a successor in place when he steps down, he said.

MTD director pleased with Danville-to-Champaign results

DANVILLE – Renee McDaniels sometimes sleeps in the last seat on the 40-minute bus ride from Danville to Champaign.

She is a regular on Danville Mass Transit's number 10 route, the latest addition to its system.

Obiter Research to stay in area

CHAMPAIGN – And the winner is: Champaign.

Obiter Research, which makes hard-to-obtain research chemicals, has decided to build a $4 million facility in Champaign's Apollo industrial park, rather than move to Iowa City.

Creation of foreign trade zone weighed

CHAMPAIGN – Tired of talking with Peoria and Decatur about possible inclusion in their foreign trade zones, Champaign County is considering setting up one of its own.

The Champaign County Economic Development Corp. is researching the possibility of hiring a Kansas City, Mo., law firm, Miller & Company, to help set up such a zone.

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