Stations go off air, power down for tower improvements

CHAMPAIGN – One Champaign radio station went off the air for nearly three hours and another station temporarily reduced its power on Sunday in an effort to improve reception for people listening to National Weather Service broadcasts.

Ed Bond, engineer and producer at WDWS-AM and WHMS-FM, said work crews spent late Sunday morning and part of Sunday afternoon replacing the National Weather Service's antenna on top of the radio tower near Neil Street and Windsor Road.

UI team wins grant to do energy audits

CHAMPAIGN – A team of students from the University of Illinois has won a $50,000 grant to help prospective tenants in the Champaign-Urbana area learn the energy efficiency of apartments they might rent.

With the Ford College Community Challenge grant, the students hope to build an online database that would show the energy efficiency of rental properties in the community.

Littelfuse commits to 15-year lease at UI research park

CHAMPAIGN – Chicago-based Littelfuse, a manufacturer of circuit-protection products, has signed a 15-year lease for space in a new building within the University of Illinois Research Park.

2 local candidates among METCAD director finalists

CHAMPAIGN – Two local candidates are among the four final applicants for the post of director for the Metropolitan Computer-aided Dispatch service.

METCAD provides police, fire and emergency services dispatching for most of Champaign County except the Rantoul area. Rick Kallmayer, who formerly worked at the University of Illinois Police Department, retired in late June after serving as METCAD director for about five years.

Urbana council exploring high-speed Web possibilities

URBANA – Urbana city council members want to know more details about chances of a high-speed Internet service in Champaign-Urbana.

Urbana council members to discuss broadband options

URBANA – Mayor Laurel Prussing is interested in the possibility of a city-operated broadband Internet service in Urbana.

Council members will discuss the issue, but take no action, at their meeting set for 7 p.m. Monday at the council chambers, 400 S. Vine St., U.

Re-timing of traffic signals could be first stage in overhaul

URBANA – The traffic signals at 25 intersections in Champaign-Urbana are about to get a timing makeover aimed at reducing traffic accidents.

Longtime pageant organizer took it to national level

HOOPESTON – For more than 30 years, Delores Crabtree has been a major organizer of the National Sweetcorn Festival's Sweetheart Pageant, a local event that has grown into a training ground for Miss America hopefuls from across the nation.

Safe Routes project aims to educate students, drivers

The young woman on the cell phone didn't even slow down as she passed Bottenfield Elementary School, even though the crossing guard was already in the middle of Prospect Avenue.

She drove past the school, easily going faster than 20 mph, said Bottenfield parent Leeann Stack, who watched the woman continue her conversation as she drove past the crossing guard last week.

'Extreme' exposure paying dividends for Champaign charity

CHAMPAIGN – Donation bins overflow, shelves are stocked with food, the place is definitely spiffier – and the line of people needing help is longer than ever.

That's what a little extreme TV exposure can do.