UI scientists have a winning wet look

The way water molecules pass through cell walls may not sound like a great topic for cocktail conversation, but we can't get along without it.

As University of Illinois Professor Klaus Schulten likes to say, 75 percent of our bodies are water, and it needs to be controlled and transported in a process that's vital in plants as well.

103rd forum focuses on school funding

URBANA – Republican Champaign County Board member Deborah Frank Feinen said if voters send her to Springfield, she would push for a tax swap to reform the way public schools are funded in Illinois, a measure state Rep. Naomi Jakobsson, D-Urbana, opposes.

The 103rd District candidates for state representative laid out their plans for funding elementary and secondary education and discussed health care, University of Illinois governance and even Chief Illiniwek in a televised forum on Thursday.

Program connects teen moms with resources

CHAMPAIGN – It hasn't been easy, but 17-year-old Virginia Howard set her goals, and she's looking forward to graduation and to starting classes at Parkland College.

"I'm going to get my certified nursing assistant degree," she said. "I'm going to get a good job for me and for my baby."

Neighbors back different candidates but still get along

CHAMPAIGN – Good fences make good neighbors.

Battling election signs offer a greater challenge.

Coroner rivals don't agree on job duties

URBANA – A police officer running for coroner says the position requires cop skills, while his opponent, a deputy coroner, says the job isn't about solving crimes, but determining the cause of death.

Deputy Coroner Duane Northrup, a Republican, believes his three years in the coroner's office has acquainted him with the investigative, medical and procedural skills required for the position, along with his service on the Champaign County Child Death Review Team.

Band plays on without leader

ATWOOD – When the Marching Rajahs surge into Memorial Stadium on Saturday to defend their championship, they'll be performing without their sidelined leader.

Word spread fast this week in the Atwood-Hammond High School community that Joe Wolfe had a heart attack just before the year's biggest University of Illinois competition, and residents quickly made plans to put the 55-member prizewinning band back on the field.

Senator proposes new Gibson City subdivision

GIBSON CITY – The city could gain up to 88 new homes if a subdivision proposed by a state senator is built.

Sen. Bill Brady, R-Bloomington, and his two brothers, Bob and Ed Brady, intend to purchase 36.2 acres of land between Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley Middle School and the Railside Golf Club and turn it into a new subdivision that would hold as many as 88 homes.

New name, look for mall

URBANA – It takes a village to revive a mall.

At least that's the thinking behind the planned renovation of Lincoln Square Mall – soon to be renamed Lincoln Square Village – which will begin changing its focus from retail to a combination of retail, residential and office uses.

Christie Clinic runs out of flu vaccines

CHAMPAIGN – Flu shots for most people in Champaign-Urbana were set to end this morning, when Christie Clinic was expected to run through the last of its vaccine supply.

It took just 2 days for the clinic to exhaust the 12,000 vaccine doses it had on hand, said Kelly Schaudt, Christie's community and physician relations manager.

Ex-Champaign officer receives18-year sentence

HARRODSBURG, Ky. – A former Champaign police officer has been sentenced to 18 years in prison for attempting to murder a lover and the child she says he fathered.

Commonwealth's Attorney Richie Bottoms said negotiations Tuesday enabled the former probationary officer to enter an Alford plea in Kentucky law, similar to a no-contest plea elsewhere.