Man sentenced to prison for hitting police officer

URBANA — An Urbana man who admitted striking a police officer has been sentenced to 4 1/2 years in prison.

Jeremiah Johnson, 37, who listed addresses on Florida Avenue and Silver Street in Urbana, pleaded guilty Monday before Champaign County Judge Tom Difanis to aggravated battery. He admitted that on Nov. 26, 2010, he elbowed Champaign police officer Matt Rush in the chest.

Charge of leaving scene added in DUI case

URBANA — An Armstrong man already charged with driving under the influence in connection with an accident in which his friend fell out of the back of a pickup truck has also been charged with leaving the scene of an accident.

C-U libraries not leaving new cooperative

CHAMPAIGN — A local official is hoping to dispel rumors that the Champaign and Urbana libraries are leaving a newly formed cooperative of downstate libraries.

Marsha Grove, Champaign library director, said Wednesday that she is worried some users may be confused about the status of the Illinois Heartland Library System and its members.

Police arrest four, seek another, in holdup in Urbana

URBANA — Quick action by Urbana patrol officers led to the arrests of four young men for the holdup of a man on a city street in southeast Urbana Wednesday night. Police are looking for a fifth.

River cleanup set at Ellsworth Park in Danville

DANVILLE — The city's parks and recreation division and Keep Vermilion County Beautiful are sponsoring a river cleanup at Ellsworth from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday.

Poverty increase reflects economy, experts say

New Census figures show poverty in Illinois is at its highest point since 1992 — no surprise to economists and advocates for the poor.

The official state and local poverty figures will be released by the Census next week, but the 2010 Current Population Survey, released Tuesday, included some state-level data.

Developer to take ownership of Kohl's property in Danville

DANVILLE — The developer of the future Kohl's department store site is scheduled to take ownership of the property Thursday (Sept. 15)  from the city along with $800,000 in incentives.

Urbana checking for asbestos in material over stage at UHS

URBANA — The Urbana school district has asked an engineer to check for possible asbestos content in material covering the ceiling above the auditorium stage at Urbana High School.

GOP candidates for state Senate speak at Tea Party forum

DANVILLE — Six Republican candidates for three state Senate seats in central Illinois showed unanimity on a number of issues Wednesday night and avoided taking any shots at each other.

North Ridge renovation price tag: $15.8 million

DANVILLE — Danville schools officials have known the North Ridge Middle School renovation would be more expansive and complex than one wrapping up at South View Middle School, and now they know it will be about $3.5 million more expensive.