Concerns aired at ethanol plant forum

CHAMPAIGN – Concern about the impact of a proposed ethanol plant in northwest Champaign on the waters of the Upper Kaskasia drew more than 90 people Monday night to a public hearing.

The hearing was sponsored by the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency to hear public comment about its tentative decision to issue a permit to The Andersons Ethanol Champaign LLC, to allow the firm to be able to discharge 720,000 gallons per day of wastewater into the Kaskaskia Ditch from its proposed ethanol plant.

Morning shake latest in wave of aftershocks

CHAMPAIGN – Aftershocks have continued from Friday's earthquake.

At 12:38 a.m. today, a temblor of magnitude 4.5 was recorded by the U.S. Geological Survey near Mount Carmel. It was one of more than 20 aftershocks since Friday.

Residents wake up to shaking furniture

Roxanne Landman of Champaign was working as a nurse at Carle Foundation Hospital when the earthquake struck early this morning.

"I was working on the computer and the monitor was moving all over the place," Landman said. "The call lights from the patients' rooms were going on and off like Christmas."

Geophysicist at UI knew feeling

Tim Larson of Urbana knew what was happening.

"It woke me up this morning," said Larson, a geophysicist who monitors earthquakes at the Illinois State Geological Survey at the University of Illinois. "I knew it was a significant earthquake at some distance away.

Scrap metal drop-off site to open

DANVILLE – From the driver's seat, you can buy a meal, pick up a prescription, get cash, pay a bill – and now, you can drop off aluminum and other scrap metal for recycling.

Next week, Mervis Industries will open Advantage Recycling, a new 60-by-80-foot center at the corner of Henning Road and U.S. 150 west of Danville that features a covered drive-through area where people can drop off metal recyclables, including aluminum, brass, copper, scrap iron, stainless steel and batteries.

Vermilion County cleanup linked to U.S. effort

DANVILLE – Vermilion County residents have multiple opportunities this weekend and next week to help the environment by volunteering for various cleanup activities or by recycling electronics.

The local events are being planned as part of the Great American Cleanup, a national community improvement program that takes place annually from March 1 to May 31. Coordinated by Keep America Beautiful, the three-month program encourages volunteers throughout the nation to clean up their communities.

Hold on funds threatens agencies

DANVILLE – The Vermilion County Soil and Water Conservation District office has scaled back programming and may close later this year if state money, promised in the 2008 budget, is not released soon.

The Vermilion County office is not alone.

Danville yard waste pick-up requires city bags or stickers

DANVILLE – Since the city's yard waste collection program restarted last week, workers have collected between 20 and 30 tons of waste, solid waste superintendent Carl Carpenter said.

"The only rule we have trouble enforcing is people using bags other than the 'City of Danville' bags," Carpenter said.

For 3rd year, Paxton resident pushes no-litter efforts

PAXTON – Paxton Mayor Bill Ingold and Bayles Lake homeowner Mike Benigno are sick and tired of seeing mounds of trash cluttering Ford County's roads – and they plan to do something about it.

For the third consecutive year, Benigno is kicking off a no-littering campaign this spring to create awareness of the impact the litter has on the area's environment and looks.

Local activists will propose ballot questions

The annual town meetings will be held Tuesday evening in City of Champaign and Cunningham townships, and local activists are planning again to put advisory questions on the Nov. 4 ballot.

Champaign resident Carl Estabrook, who is active with AWARE, the Anti-War, Anti-Racism Effort, said he has been told about several advisory questions that various groups are planning to propose at the Cunningham and City of Champaign town meetings.