Police shouldn't get special treatment in investigation

Once again, a local police agency isn't being forthright in releasing information about an incident in which a man died while being pursued by police. This time, it's a case involving a Georgetown police officer who reportedly fell upon 47-year-old Curtis Sloan during a foot chase last Wednesday night. Mr. Sloan died of blunt force trauma to the chest, according to preliminary autopsy reports.

Vermilion County Sheriff Pat Hartshorn, whose department is investigating the incident, declined to release the name of the police officer who was pursuing Mr. Sloan. On the other hand, Hartshorn was eager to report that Mr. Sloan had been arrested 58 times in Vermilion County. With that kind of public relations spin being presented this early in the police probe, members of the public are left to question how legitimate an investigation will be.

How long will voters tolerate corruption?

Chris Christie, a U.S. attorney who's disgusted by the level of corruption in his home state of New Jersey, recently gave a speech in which he implored the taxpayers in that state to take government back from the politicians who exploit their positions for personal gain.

Christie urged the public to "demand more" from their elected officials than politics as usual, and he warned that continuing to ignore corruption in government will cause even more serious problems down the road.

A review of our endorsements

Following is a review of the candidates in Tuesday's general election who have been endorsed by The News-Gazette.

Teens, teachers taking steps to instill better road habits

Grant Bennett's seen too many deaths related to driving accidents, and he's not going to take it anymore.

The Unity High School junior, along with staff and other students at the Tolono school, are starting a program that will apply peer pressure to get teens and other drivers to act safer on the road.

Students provide blank canvas, Carey offers vision, encouragement

A group of second-graders is making pictures of butterflies on fabric in Shauna Carey's art classroom on a recent morning. They outline the butterfly wings with wax, then use fabric markers to color them after the wax dries.

Suddenly, Carey spots Israel Garza, who has colored a portion of his butterfly's wings brown.

No legislative cure for tragic loss

When an unspeakable tragedy occurs, people grope for answers or solutions.

So it is that people are trying to salvage something redeeming out of the death of 25-year-old Matt Wilhelm, a bicyclist who was killed Sept. 2 when he was struck by a car as he was riding on Illinois 130 east of Urbana. One possibility under study is passing legislation designed to prevent such tragedies from recurring.

Township tax hike not worthy of support

It's understandable that officials with the City of Champaign Township are hoping that taxpayers will bail them out of the financial hole they created by approving a property tax increase on Nov. 7.

The township is asking voters to more than double the levy it can impose, from 3.7 cents per $100 assessed valuation to 8.7 cents per $100 assessed valuation. That healthy increase in property tax revenue would allow the township to hike its annual budget from $422,000 to nearly $1 million, and it would cost the owner of a $150,000 home an extra $22.50 per year.

Champaign County Board, Districts 6-9

The News-Gazette today offers endorsements in the four primarily urban county board districts in which candidates will be on next Tuesday's ballot. Our endorsements in Districts 1 through 5 were in Wednesday's newspaper.

District 6

Champaign County Board, Districts 1-5

The News-Gazette today offers endorsements in five of the nine county board districts in which candidates will be on next Tuesday's ballot. Our endorsements in Districts 6 through 9 will be in Thursday's edition.

District 1

Food drive deserves support

Organizers of Food for Families kicked off their annual fundraising and food collection drive last week, giving themselves until Nov. 11 to meet an ambitious goal of attracting donations of 185,000 pounds of food and $60,000.

Suffice it to say, volunteers for this organization are doing wital work and deserve not only congratulations but assistance. The easiest way to do that is simply to write a check and send it to the Eastern Illinois Foodbank, 2405 North Shore Drive, Urbana, IL 61802. Contributions also can be made over the Internet (www.eifoodbank.org) or by phone (328-3663).

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