Surgeon to try to fix whooping crane's broken leg

URBANA – Number 26 managed to fly from Florida to central Illinois in a handful of days. That's 1,136 miles by Mapquest's count, though whooping cranes probably find a faster route.

Anyway, not bad for an endangered species, and a young member of the species at that.

Review of Champaign County government backed

URBANA – Members of a key Champaign County Board committee want to look at issues and ideas for possible reorganization of county government within the next six months.

While different members of the policy, personnel and appointments committee expressed various concerns and had questions about the process to be taken, there was a consensus on the committee Wednesday to recommend that the full county board go forward with a review.

6 administrative appointments OK'd in Danville schools

DANVILLE – The Danville school district is a big step closer to having next year's administrative team in place.

On Wednesday, board members approved six appointments. They are:

Bradfield says result came down to party affiliation

URBANA – Rex Bradfield might have subconsciously known something wasn't quite right Tuesday night after he went out to dinner with his wife. "I had a meal, a couple of drinks and I felt kind of queasy," said Bradfield, a Republican who was running an uphill race for mayor of Urbana against incumbent Democrat Laurel Prussing.

The post-dinner stomach distress foreshadowed the eventual outcome, with Prussing getting 53 percent of the vote to 32 percent for Bradfield. Green Party candidate Durl Kruse got 8 percent and independent Rob McColley 6 percent.

Rutherford testing waters for run for state treasurer

PONTIAC – State Sen. Dan Rutherford, R-Pontiac, is one step closer to announcing for another statewide campaign.

Rutherford, whose Senate district includes parts of Champaign and Iroquois counties and all of Ford County, announced that he has formed an exploratory committee to run for state treasurer in 2010. The current treasurer, Alexi Giannoulias, has an exploratory committee for a possible run for the U.S. Senate seat now held by Roland Burris.

Sidney sewer work hinges on federal aid

SIDNEY – If no federal economic recovery package funds come Sidney's way, the village will drop its plans for a sanitary sewer system.

That was the promise that village President John Finn made publicly Monday. The assurance came after complaints from residents Robert Galbreath and Fred Werts that the village board had moved forward with plans for the sewer system without having a referendum on the issue.

'Beyond the Chief' signs vandalized

URBANA – Three signs that were part of the "Beyond the Chief" exhibit on the University of Illinois campus were vandalized between Monday evening and Tuesday afternoon.

UI Professor Robert Warrior said the damaged signs, on the 1200 block of West Nevada Street, Urbana, portrayed the Potawatomi, Meskwaki and Sac American Indian tribes.

City Center work added to Monticello budget

MONTICELLO – Renovation work on City Center will continue after the Monticello City Council agreed to add the project to the 2010 budget during a study session Monday.

City Center is a former furniture warehouse across from City Hall that the city bought to convert to a multiuse building.

Urbana school board OKs community liaison post

URBANA – The Urbana school board Tuesday night approved hiring someone to help the district reach out to people in the community who aren't involved with the schools.

The community liaison will be responsible for surveying residents about school improvement and climate issues, and seeking out people who are not now communicating with the district.

27-year-old man robbed of cash while walking in alley

URBANA – An Urbana man was robbed of an undisclosed amount of cash early Monday.

An Urbana police report said the 27-year-old man was walking in an alley in the 700 block of Walnut Street just before 6 a.m. when a person approached him, implied that he or she had a weapon and demanded money.