Home health workers protest at Black's office

DANVILLE — A small group of home health care workers picketed outside state Rep. Bill Black’s Danville office Thursday morning to protest possible budget cuts of 50 percent or more in Illinois human services.

Dire effects foreseen on health from state budget situation

CHAMPAIGN — Public health administrators from East Central Illinois have joined the chorus of tax-supported agencies crying foul over the prospect of huge budget cuts.

“I’m looking at letting eight full-time employees and 12 part-time employees go,” said Doug Corbett, administrator for the Ford-Iroquois County Health Department.

Kim Laboratories relocating to Rantoul Business Center

CHAMPAIGN – Kim Laboratories will move from EnterpriseWorks to the Rantoul Business Center at the end of this month, Chief Executive Officer Myung Kim said.

The biotechnology company, which employs eight, is leaving the business incubator center in the University of Illinois Research Park after six years.

Production at Baltimore Aircoil in Paxton ends Friday

PAXTON – Friday will mark the end of production at the Baltimore Aircoil plant.

The company, which has been Paxton's largest employer, announced in February that it would close its local facility and lay off all of its 223 workers by late June. Employees have been laid off in six waves, plant manager Bruce Kietzman said. A crew of 20, Which includes him, the human resources manager and office staff, will remain through September. Workers will take things off the walls and gather the racks and the shelving.

Gifford State Bank buys ex-Busey facility in Thomasboro

THOMASBORO – Gifford State Bank has bought the former Busey Bank facility in Thomasboro.

First Busey Corp. closed the bank along with the Busey main bank on Sangamon Avenue in downtown Rantoul in May.

Neil to reopen; part of University to be closed for work

CHAMPAIGN – Progress on construction work will allow a lane of Neil Street to reopen next week while two lanes of University Avenue will be closed.

Tony Vandeventer of the Champaign Public Works Department said contractor Otto Baum Construction expects to complete the second phase of its masonry project on the Champaign City Building by the end of this week.

Racial-climate surveys on way to Champaign parents

CHAMPAIGN – Parents of children in Champaign schools should soon be getting racial-climate surveys in the mail.

The school district is looking at perceptions of race and educational equity in the Champaign schools. It is the first such survey since 2000, and the first since the district has been operating under its federal consent decree aimed at eliminating the achievement gap between black and white students.

Firefighters learn 'grain tube' technique for bin rescues

URBANA – As a trained rescue specialist, Dave Newcomb doesn't like the odds of getting someone trapped in a grain bin out alive.

"Two out of five are successful recoveries," said the veteran Urbana fire lieutenant. "First you have to expose the person, then decide if it's a rescue or a recovery."

Ex-Danville City Hall to be gone in next couple weeks

DANVILLE – Contractors and city officials expect the old Danville City Hall to be demolished in the next two to three weeks.

Doug Ahrens, city public works director, said he doesn't anticipate any streets closings as a result but possibly some lane restrictions when the contractor begins loading material.

Two women shot in Champaign expected to survive

URBANA – Two 26-year-old women who were shot in a north Champaign neighborhood Tuesday afternoon are expected to survive their injuries.

And a Champaign man accused of shooting them has been charged with aggravated battery with a firearm and unlawful use of weapons by a felon.