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Monticello Defeats Bismark Blue Devils

The Monticello Sages defeat the Bismark-Henning Blue Devils by a score of 45-33 on Friday Night. The Sages were led by Ryan Donahue with 12 points 4 rebouds and 1 assists. Matt Kruse also chipped in with 12 points. The Bismark was led by Austin Toler with 15 points. With the win the Sages improve to 2-0. Tune in tomorrow as the Sages take on Pleasent Plains at 4:30. You can hear the game live on 95.9 WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com

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Driver Pleads Not Guilty In Knox Student Death

A Galesburg woman has pleaded not guilty in a hit & run accident that killed a Knox College student.

33-year-old Lakeesha Smith's attorney entered the plea on her behalf during a hearing in Knox County court Wednesday. She's asked for a jury trial on charges that include reckless homicide, aggravated driving under the influence and leaving the scene of a fatal accident.

Police contend Knox College Junior Tundun Lawani was crossing the street on Oct. 28 when Smith struck and killed her. Authorities say Smith was found hours later at her home.

Smith's trial date was tentatively set for Feb. 18.

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Lawmaker Still Hopes For Gambling Expansion

The sponsor of legislation to add five new casinos in Illinois says Gov. Pat Quinn has been unwilling to negotiate a compromise, but he remains hopeful one can be reached.

Rep. Lou Lang, a Skokie Democrat, said Thursday he questions whether Quinn really wants a deal before the end of the legislative session.

Lang said Quinn hasn't met with him or the bill's other sponsor.

A spokeswoman for Quinn says the governor's priority is pension reform and he has been clear about what a gambling deal must include.

The bill would add slot machines in horse racing tracks in addition to the casinos.

Quinn vetoed it this summer, saying it lacked important ethical protections.

Lang said if there's no deal before Jan. 9, legislators will try again next session.

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Sentence Delayed For Man Accused Of Shooting At Cops

A Springfield man who tried killing two police officers last year is still waiting to learn how much prison time he'll serve. Sentencing for Jesus Ramirez has been pushed back for a third time. Ramirez led officers on a high speed chase down Interstate 55 from northern McLean County to the Stevenson Drive exit in Springfield last year. He attempted to shoot the officers after his vehicle rolled over, but the gun didn't fire.

Sangamon County State's Attorney John Milhiser says Ramirez's defense team is to blame for the delays, a team which includes former Blagojevich defense attorney Sam Adam Jr. He's currently mulling a run for Congress to replace Jesse Jackson Jr., though Milhiser couldn't confirm if that's why there are continuted delays. The new hearing is scheduled for this afternoon at 1:30.

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Drought Threatens To Close Mississippi To Barges

After months of drought, companies that ship grain and other goods down the Mississippi River are being haunted by a potential nightmare: If water levels fall too low, the nation's main inland waterway could become impassable to barges just as the harvest heads to market.

Any closure of the river would upend the transport system that has carried American grain since before steamboats and Mark Twain. So shipping companies are scrambling to find alternative ways to move crops to the Gulf Coast.

The focus of greatest concern is a 180-mile stretch of the river between St. Louis and Cairo, Ill. That's where lack of rain has squeezed the channel from its normal width of 1,000 feet or more to a just a few hundred feet. And it's shallow.

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Drought Worsens After Weeks of Improvements

A new report shows that the nation's worst drought in decades has worsened for a second straight week, after conditions had improved for more than a month.

The weekly U.S. Drought Monitor report released Thursday shows that 62.7% of the continental U.S. was in some form of drought as of Tuesday. That's up from 60.1% the previous week.

The portion of the lower 48 states in extreme or exceptional drought - the two worst classifications - also rose, to 20.12% from last week's 19.04%.

The dry conditions intensified sharply in Oklahoma, where 90.5% of the state is in extreme or exceptional drought. That's up 19%age points.

The portion of South Dakota in those two classifications rose more than 8%age points, to 63.32%.

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Clinton Christmas Parade Saturday

The annual Clinton Christmas Parade is this Saturday.

Each year the parade is traditionally held during the evening hours, but because of the community wanting it to be during the afternoon, the Clinton Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors decided to move it to an afternoon. Executive Director of the Clinton Chamber of Commerce, Marian Brisard says the decision was made a while back, giving everyone plenty of notice.

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The Grand Marshal for the 2012 Clinton Christmas parade will be The Larson Family. Excerpts from their nomination letters read as include "Mabel was diagnosed with a fatal genetic disease called Batten's Disease, a terminal brain disease. Dan & Ramee are using this diagnosis as an opportunity to educate people through their foundation, "Mabel's Able." Mabel's Christmases are limited. The Larson family is dealing with the short life expectancy of their sweet daughter, caring for her special needs, while working to raise two older children. Dan is a veteran, who served in the Marine Corps and has gone to war for our country. Now, Dan is employed at Clinton Power Station as a security officer. Ramee is a stay-at-home mom, taking care of Mabel's special needs and home-schooling Nora & Braden. The family hosts an annual 5K Walk and Run, donating the money raised to other families whose children suffer from rare diseases." Brisard says all the nominees were very deserving.

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The Clinton Christmas Parade, themed Christmas Magic, will be held Saturday afternoon at 2 pm. The parade route begins in the 500 block of East Main Street at DeWitt Manor, traveling West to Mr. Lincoln's Square and ends at the corner of Adams & Center Street near Calvert Funeral Home. For more information on the Christmas Parade, please contact the Chamber office at 217-935-3364 or 866-4DeWitt.

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County Board Ops For Higher Tax Levy For Ambulance Service

It was the final County Board meeting for half the DeWitt County Board, and there was some big items on the agenda.

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Finance Chair, Ed Young proposed the Fiscal Year 13 Budget for the County. This year's budget saw some increased expenses, mainly due to the ambulance tax levy. Young explains it was up to Board Members whether they wanted leave for in case something came up for next year's Board to have breathing room in case of an unforeseen occurrence. The County proposed a levy of $800-thousand.

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County Board Chair Melonie Tilley felt as though taxing $800-thousand was a little bit higher than what was necessary. She felt if they could levy $650-thousand, that would be more than enough to pay back the County's loan and also have enough money left over for unforeseen emergencies.

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Some language in the PSI contract may leave the County obligated to some future unexpected expenses. State's Attorney Dick Koritz explains the contract cannot be modified in the future, therefore, if Farmer City desires to have PSI be their ambulance provider, the County is obligated to allow it, because the contract states any areas not covered by a fire protection district with an ambulance service. The situation is hypothetic, however, it is possible.

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If the full $800-thousand is not used, the next County Board has the option to lower the levy to meet their needs then. Young explains the thought process was to give them money to deal with those unforeseen expenses.

A motion was filed to lower the levy to $650-thousand, however it failed by a vote of 8-3. Those supporting the motion included Tilley, Pete Dougherty, and Sherry Brown.

There was also a lot of discussion dedicated to the animal shelter and levying a tax to help pay for that. Find out Monday on Regional Radio News whether the Board will levy a tax to pay for a future animal shelter, and what the thoughts were for advocates of a new animal shelter.

Other items from the County Board's regular monthly meeting...

>>Al Perring was reappointed to the Clinton Sanitary District with a term to expire in June of 2014.

>>Jim Sams was reappointed to the Clinton Sanitary District with a term to expire in June of 2015.

>> Andy Hedrick and Willard McKinley were reappointed to the ZBA with terms expiring September 30, 2017.

>> The Supply and Installation of a manual dual flow control valve on unit number twelve in the amount of $1131.50. (This disperses road salt from under the trucks)

>> The Marina Committee had a rejection approved for the shower and restroom project because the bids were too high.

>>11 new voting booths were purchased at a cost of $9438 that will be paid back through grants.

>>Memory card readers were purchased at a cost of $75-hundred with a grant reimbursing the general fund.

>> Insurance polices for workman's compensation and liability were approved for $140,678.

>> An appraisal of the power plant was approved for $65-thousand. Most of this cost will come from the Clinton School District.

>> The 2013 Budget was approved. Find more on this next week on Regional Radio.

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Kentucky Upset By Notre Dame

NBA
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Miami Heat 105, San Antonio Spurs 100
Golden State Warriors 106, Denver Nuggets 105

NCAA Top-25 Basketball ("USA Today" Rankings)
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#7 Florida Gators 82, Marquette Golden Eagles 49
Notre Dame Fighting Irish 64, #8 Kentucky Wildcats 50
#12 Gonzaga Bulldogs 104, Lewis Clark State 57

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Falcons Sink Saints

Matt Ryan tossed for 165 yards and a touchdown as the Falcons avenged their lone loss of the year with a 23-13 win over the Saints.  Michael Turner rushed for 83 yards and a score for Atlanta, which is now 11-and-1.  The lone loss was to the Saints in the Big Easy.  Drew Brees threw for 341 yards and five interceptions for New Orleans, which dropped to 5-and-7.  Brees failed to throw a touchdown pass for the first time since Week Four of the 2009 campaign, snapping his NFL-record streak at 54 games.  Lance Moore hauled in a game-high seven balls for 123 yards in the setback.  Mark Ingram found the endzone on the ground for the Saints.

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Bears Host Seahawks, Rams and Niners Rematch After Tie, Pack Hosts Vikings

>>Seahawks Square Off With Bears At Soldier

(Chicago, IL) -- The Seattle Seahawks and Chicago Bears look to continue their drive to the playoffs as they face off Sunday at Soldier Field. This is the second straight road game for Seattle, which lost 24-21 at Miami last Sunday. The Seahawks are 6-and-5 overall, but just 1-and-5 on the road. They will play three of their final four games at home. The Bears snapped a two-game skid with a 28-10 home win over the Vikings in Week 12. Quarterback Jay Cutler returned after missing most of the last two games with a concussion. The Bears are 8-and-3 overall, including a 5-and-1 mark at home.

>>49ers, Rams Rematch In St. Louis

(St. Louis, MO) -- NFC West rivals meet for the second time this season when the San Francisco 49ers take on the St. Louis Rams Sunday at the Edward Jones Dome. The two teams battled to a 24-all tie in San Francisco in Week 10. Quarterback Alex Smith suffered a concussion in that game and second-year signal-caller Colin Kaepernick [[ CAP-er-nick ]] has led the team to two wins in his place. Head coach Jim Harbaugh announced he is sticking with the hot hand this week even though Smith is now healthy and cleared to play. The Niners lead the division at 8-2-and-1. The Rams picked up their first win since Week Five with a 31-17 victory at Arizona this past Sunday. St. Louis is 4-6-and-1.

>>Vikings, Packers Tangle In NFC North Tussle

(Green Bay, WI) -- NFC North rivals clash Sunday at Lambeau Field as the Minnesota Vikings go up against the Green Bay Packers. It's the first meeting of the season between the longtime division rivals, with both in the playoff hunt. The Vikings lost 28-10 at Chicago last Sunday and have dropped three of their last four overall to slip to 6-and-5. The Packers had their five-game winning streak snapped with a 38-10 road loss to the Giants on Sunday night. Green Bay is 7-and-4 overall. The Packers play three of their next four games at home. They rematch with Minnesota in Week 17.

>>Surging Colts Clash With Slumping Lions

(Detroit, MI) -- The surprising Indianapolis Colts look to continue their playoff push when they face the disappointing Detroit Lions Sunday at Ford Field. The Colts are coming off a 20-13 victory over the Bills and have won five of their last six games overall. Indianapolis is currently the fifth seed in the AFC. Rookie quarterback Andrew Luck has thrown for more than 32-hundred yards, 13 touchdowns and 13 interceptions thus far.

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MAC Championship Could Lead To BCS Bowl Game

This is more than a league championship game for the Mid-American Conference.

It's a showcase for two Top 25 teams on long winning streaks - and there may even be BCS implications.

No. 18 Kent State takes on No. 19 Northern Illinois on Friday night at Ford Field. The winner could end up in the Orange Bowl, which would be unheard of for either of these programs.

Northern Illinois (11-1) has won 11 games in a row. Kent State (11-1) has won 10 straight. Both went unbeaten in MAC play while winning their divisions, and this title game could bring some welcome publicity to the league.

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Bears Injuries Notes

>>Hester Out vs. Seattle

Chicago Bears return specialist Devin Hester and guard Chris Spencer have been ruled out for Sunday's game against Seattle.

Both players were injured in a win over Minnesota last weekend. Hester had a concussion and Spencer has a knee injury.

The Bears were a banged up bunch after playing the Vikings, with running back Matt Forte, cornerback Charles Tillman and linebacker Lance Briggs suffering ankle injuries and guard Lance Louis tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee.

Briggs, Forte, Tillman and tight end Kellen Davis (ankle) all were limited in practice on Thursday. Louis is out for the rest of the season.

>>Injuries Will Test Bears Depth

Chicago Bears linebacker Lance Briggs has missed just four games during his career and he doesn't expect to add to the total.

The 7-time Pro Bowl player plans to be ready to play against the Seattle Seahawks this week even though he's been bothered by an ankle injury.

He says he "is getting better every day." He says he doesn't "plan on missing this week, either."

Briggs missed practice Wednesday after getting hurt in Sunday's win over Minnesota.

The Bears' depth could be tested this week after suffering a slew of injuries against the Vikings. Devin Hester (concussion), Matt Forte (ankle) and Charles Tillman (ankle) left that game, as did starting guards Lance Louis and Chris Spencer with knee injuries.

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Report for 11-30

November 30, 2012

 

Jail Population: 67

Summons Served: 3

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

S. Janel Bast, 28, Herrin, was issued a citation for Operation Of Motor Vehicle When Registration Suspended For Non-Insurance. Bast posted her IL Driver’s License as bond and was released.

 

ALL SUSPECTS ARE PRESUMED INNOCENT UNTIL FOUND GUILTY IN A COURT OF LAW.

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Miller Media Group Announces Sale of Kewanee Subsidiary

(Taylorville)--The Miller Media Group, headquartered in Taylorville and owner of radio stations in Central Illinois including Clinton's WHOW and WEZC, today announced it is selling its Virden Broadcasting Corporation subsidiary, which owns 3 radio stations in Kewanee.

 

Miller Media Group head Randal J. Miller is selling the Kewanee subsidiary to the sales manager of the Kewanee cluster of stations, Fletcher Ford of Bluegrass, Iowa. Purchase price for the transaction was not announced.

 

Ford has been sales manager at the Kewanee cluster since April 2007, and had over 10 years of retail ownership experience before joining the stations.

 

Miller has owned the Kewanee radio stations since December 30, 1994. Under Miller's direction, listenership and advertising sales revenue have both grown. WKEI Newstalk 1450 added an FM repeater at 104.3 in September 2007; WYEC 93.9 was added in 2003; and WJRE Hogg Country 102.5 increased its power and coverage in 2005.

 

Also under Miller's ownership, WYEC moved its signal to cover the Quad Cities, and added a 2nd broadcast studio in Moline, both in 2008.

 

Miller said that he has been blessed to have been part of the Kewanee and Tri-County business community the past 18 years, and added that under Ford's ownership, local radio will continue to thrive in the Tri-Counties and the Quad Cities.

 

Transfer of ownership from Miller to Ford is expected following Federal Communications Commission approval, which is expected in the next 60 days.

 

Miller remains owner of 8 other radio signals that cover Taylorville, Pana, Shelbyville, Clinton, and Charleston. 

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Illinois House Approves April Special Election

The Illinois House has voted unanimously to allow the special election to replace Jesse Jackson Jr. in Congress to be held April 9.

The Senate still must approve the bill.

Jackson resigned last week, citing his struggles with bipolar disorder. He also admitted he's the subject of a federal probe. Investigators reportedly are looking into whether Jackson misused campaign funds.

Gov. Pat Quinn has scheduled the primary to pick Jackson's replacement for Feb. 26, and he wants the general election on April 9 to coincide with municipal elections. Quinn says doing so would save money.

The General Assembly had to approve legislation to hold the election in April, however, because current law requires it be held sooner.

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Governor Vows To Pursue Assault Weapons Ban

An aide says Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn will "vigorously pursue" a ban on assault weapons even though the Senate rebuffed his attempt on Wednesday.

The Senate voted 49-4 Wednesday to override Quinn's rewritten legislation to prohibit the sale or possession of semi-automatic rifles, high-capacity magazines and .50-caliber guns.

Spokeswoman Brooke Anderson says the Democratic governor will continue seeking a statewide assault-weapons ban to enhance public safety. She would not elaborate on his strategy.

Senators say Quinn overstepped his authority in August by changing legislation on mail-order ammunition. He acted after a mass shooting at a suburban Denver movie theater.

If the House also votes to override, the original legislation allowing Illinois gun owners to purchase ammunition by mail from in-state dealers becomes law.

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Lt. Governor Says More Disclosure Could Would Help Public Trust

Lt. Gov. Sheila Simon says requiring politicians and other elected officials to disclose more information about their financial interests would help restore Illinois residents' faith in government.

Simon and Democratic Sen. Dan Kotowski will introduce legislation Thursday to overhaul the state's 40-year-old financial disclosure system.

Thousands of elected officials, candidates and government employees are required to fill out specific forms each year. But critics say the forms are meaningless because the questions are too narrow and most people answer "none" to everything.

That includes former Dixon comptroller Rita Crundwell, who recently pleaded guilty to embezzling more than $50 million from the small town to fund her horse-breeding operation.

Simon's office says that if the newly proposed forms were in use, Crundwell would have been required to disclose her assets.

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Retired Legislator Is 'Veteran of the Month'

A U.S. Army veteran who retired from the state House in 2011 has been named "Veteran of the Month" for November by the Illinois Department of Veterans' Affairs.

The department honored Ronald Stephens during a ceremony Wednesday at his hometown of Greenville.

The award is bestowed on veterans who continue to serve their communities after leaving the military.

Department Director Erica Borggren says Stephens' life has been "defined by his service to others."

She notes he served in Vietnam and was then elected to 13 terms in the Illinois House. She says he continues to dedicate significant time to veteran initiatives in southern Illinois.

Stephens served in the Army from 1969 to 1971 as paratrooper. He came under enemy fire and suffered wounds to the head, arm, shoulder and hand.

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No Vote On Gay Marriage

A vote to legalize same-sex marriage won't likely happen in the next few weeks. State Representative Kelly Cassidy says they don't have enough votes yet to get the measure passed.

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Though same sex marriage is still widely unpopular, supporters say now is the time for everyone to get on board with the idea. Nine states and the District of Columbia already allow same sex marriage. Cassidy, who is one of three openly gay lawmakers in Illinois, says gay and lesbian couples need the same protections as any other couple. Illinois law allows them to engage in civil unions, which is supposed to give them the same rights as married couples in the state. However, their rights are not recognized if they travel to another state or country where gay marriage is not legal.

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Accused Murderer Appears In Court

The Springfield woman accused of decapitating her husband made her first appearance in court yesterday. Sangamon County State's Attorney John Milhiser says the first degree murder charges against Juatasha McCaster carry a maximum sentence of 60 years.

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Milhiser says McCaster is innocent until proven guilty, but he's confident he has the right person.

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McCaster is accused of murdering and dismembering her husband, Norman McCaster, and dumping him in a field near Mechanicsburg. Milhiser says he'll seek maximum sentencing for McCaster, which means she could serve sentences for her charges consecutively if convicted.

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Illinois Announces Upgrade To Child Abuse Hotline

Illinois' child welfare agency has launched a new computerized child abuse hotline in response to complaints its old system was failing to handle the volume of calls.

The Illinois Department of Children and Family Services announced the new $474,000 system Wednesday.

The department received more than 250,000 calls last year, but a majority of the callers didn't immediately reach a child abuse expert and had to be called back.

The department's new director, Richard Calica (KAHL'-ih-kuh), says the hotline's problems meant unacceptable delays in sending investigators out into the field and getting help to children and families. Calica says replacing the old hotline is a smart investment.

The hotline is staffed 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The toll-free number is 1-800-25-ABUSE (1-800-252-2873).

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Lawmakers Vote To Increase License Plate Renewal Fees To Help Fund State Parks

IT COULD SOON COST A FEW BUCKS MORE TO RENEW YOUR LICENSE PLATE IN ILLINOIS.

LAWMAKERS HAVE APPROVED A TWO DOLLAR INCREASE TO THE ANNUAL LICENSE PLATE RENEWAL FEE. ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES DIRECTOR MARC MILLER SAYS THE MONEY RAISED WILL BE USED TO FIGHT BACK DRASTIC CUTS THE AGENCY HAS SEEN OVER THE LAST DECADE.

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WITH THE INCREASE, IT BRINGS THE TOTAL UP TO 101 DOLLARS FOR MOST PASSENGER VEHICLES. MILLER SAYS THE MONEY GENERATED WILL BE USED MAINTAINENCE IN STATE PARKS IS DESPERATE NEED OF UPKEEP.

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IF SIGNED INTO LAW BY THE GOVERNOR…THE TWO DOLLAR INCREASE WILL TAKE EFFECT IN JANUARY. MILLER SAYS A FEW OTHER SMALL D-N-R FEES WILL ALSO GO UP TO FUND AGENCY NEEDS.

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Dec. 17 Trial Set For Teen In School Shooting

A Dec. 17 trial is planned for the 14-year-old boy accused of firing a handgun at Normal Community High School.

Judge Elizabeth Robb on Tuesday ruled the teen will remain in juvenile court, and she scheduled the case for a bench trial.

Robb says she decided not to transfer the boy to adult court after receiving his psychiatric evaluation.

If prosecuted as an adult, he could have faced at least 30 years in prison. The worst he'll get now is incarceration in a juvenile facility until he's 21.

In court Tuesday, prosecutors read the boy's journal pages, which talked about voices urging him to commit violence.

Authorities contend he had three handguns Sept. 7 when he fired shots into a classroom ceiling before a teacher tackled him. Nobody was injured.

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Site For Clinton Elementary School Readies For Spring Construction

The site of the new Clinton Elementary School is beginning to look more and more like a construction site.

Progress is being made in preparation of laying the foundation for the building in the spring. Superintendent of Clinton Schools Dr. Jeff Holmes explains right now site excavation is being done. Dr. Holmes explains site excavation is basically preparing the ground with soil suitable for laying a foundation for the building they are going to put up.

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According to Dr. Holmes, the clay has to have a certain moisture level. Once the moisture level has been reached at the current level, they compact it, and bring in the next layer, and the cycle continues. Dr. Holmes says about 15 layers have been put in so far, and with a large building to go up, it is very important to have very compact soil underneath it.

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Believe it or not, with as dry as the summer was, the rains post-drought have put too much moisture into the soil. Thankfully for construction crews, they have been able to reach their moisture levels and continue working over the past several weeks. Dr. Holmes notes before a nice stretch just prior to Thanksgiving, there was a little concern they may not be able to reach the necessary moisture levels to finish the soil compaction for the winter.

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As we begin to see the winter weather start to make it's way to central Illinois, Dr. Holmes is hopeful there will be time to begin drilling for their geothermal wells. Right now, everything is on pace for the time line of beginning construction next spring for the new school.

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DeWitt County Jail Eyeing Upgrades For Jail

Despite being less than 20 years old, a local facility is needing some renovations.

The DeWitt County Jail is one of the few buildings in the city that is in use 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and is continuously occupied with a significant amount of people. DeWitt County Sheriff Jered Shofner explains if the jail is going to continue to be an asset to the community, there are going to be some needed maintenance items given attention over the next few years on things that are beginning to wear out.

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Among some of the wear and tear items, a few months ago the jail experienced a water pipe break which forced the evacuation of part of the jail. The Sheriff says in that instance, they were fortunate they did not have to evacuate the whole jail, however, it is things like that that Sheriff Shofner says need attention around the facility.

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The jail is currently home to Cook County and federal inmates their facilities do not have the room for. Sheriff Shofner hopes to continue that program, and he says if this program and housing at a 90% rate are going to continue, these maintenance items are going to need attention sooner rather than later.

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According to the Sheriff, the agreement with Cook County to house their inmates is going to generate about $700-thousand in revenues. Sheriff Shofner says this is important because the County Jail is going always be there, he says that revenue can help offset the cost of their expenses, and help the taxpayers of the county.

The average population since the beginning of the agreement has been around 77 inmates.

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Bears, NFL Notes

>>Cutler: Bears May Have To Tone Down Offense

Jay Cutler might need a cheat sheet so he knows which players are lining up this week for the Chicago Bears.

They host Seattle on Sunday and figure to have a different look, particularly on the offensive line.

The Bears got Cutler back after a 1-game absence due to a concussion only to lose a slew of players in a win over Minnesota last week.

That includes stars Devin Hester (concussion) along with Matt Forte and Charles Tillman (ankle injuries), but they were dangerously thin in the trenches after losing starting guards Lance Louis and Chris Spencer to knee injuries.

Cutler says the Bears will "have to be careful what we ask those guys (the linemen) to do."

>>Brandon Marshall: Some NFL Players Use Viagra To Get Ahead

(Chicago, IL) -- Bears wide receiver Brandon Marshall may have caused a little bit of a stir when discussing how NFL players try to stay in top shape. Marshall didn't tell reporters how he found out NFL players were using Viagra as a performance enhancer. He says he's got the size and brains to avoid using any performance enhancers to get an edge on the field.

>>Kaepernick To Start For Niners

(Santa Clara, CA) -- San Francisco 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh names Colin Kaepernick the starting quarterback for the third straight week. The Rams face the 49ers on Sunday. Kaepernick has led San Francisco to consecutive wins over the Bears and Saints.

>>T.Y. Hilton Earns Weekly Honors

(Indianapolis, IN) -- Colts rookie wide receiver T.Y. Hilton was named AFC Special Teams Player of the Week for his performance against the Bills. Hilton had a 75-yard punt return for a touchdown in the first quarter. Hilton is ranked sixth in the NFL averaging 12.3 yards per punt return.

>>Jaguars Claim Babin Off Waivers From Eagles

(Jacksonville, FL) -- The Jacksonville Jaguars have claimed veteran defensive end Jason Babin off waivers from the Philadelphia Eagles. The move came just one day after he was released by the Eagles on Tuesday. The Jaguars will pay the remaining 1.69-million-dollars of his 2012 salary. Babin signed with Philadelphia as a free agent in 2011 and earned his second straight trip to the Pro Bowl last season after recording a career-high 18 sacks. The 32-year-old had five-and-a-half sacks and 26 tackles in eleven games this year. Overall, Babin has recorded 53-and-a-half sacks and 296 tackles in 109 career games with the Eagles, Titans, Chiefs, Seahawks and Texans.

>>Saints, Falcons Rematch At Georgia Dome

(Atlanta, GA) -- NFC South rivals meet up in this week's Thursday night NFL game as the New Orleans Saints take on the Atlanta Falcons at the Georgia Dome. The Saints will be seeking a season sweep after handing the Falcons their only loss of the season 31-27 in Week 10 in New Orleans. The Saints had their three-game winning streak snapped with a 31-21 home loss to the 49ers this past Sunday. New Orleans is 5-and-6 overall following an 0-and-4 start. Atlanta pulled out a 24-23 victory at Tampa Bay on Sunday to improve to an NFC-leading 10-and-1. It was the Falcons' seventh win this season by a touchdown or less. Atlanta has lost its last four meetings against New Orleans.

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Deng Leads Bulls Over Mavs

Luol Deng had 22 points and six rebounds to lead the Chicago Bulls over the Dallas Mavericks 101-78 on Wednesday night.

Five Chicago players scored at least 11 points to help the Bulls (7-7) beat the Mavericks for the fourth straight time.

Nate Robinson came off the bench and added 14 points and six assists for Chicago, and fellow reserve Jimmy Butler scored a career-high 13 points, including 9 of 10 shooting from the line.

Joakim Noah chipped in 13 points, 10 rebounds, five assists and three blocks as Chicago avoided its first 3-game losing streak at the United Center since losing five straight from March 1-19, 2010.

Shawn Marion scored 18 points for Dallas, which shot just 35% from the field to lose for the eighth time in its last 11 games.

>>Brawl Breaks Out As Nets Top Celtics

(Boston, MA) -- Joe Johnson scored a game-high 18 points to go with six assists as the Nets knocked off the Celtics, 95-83. A brawl broke out in the first half, which led to the ejections of Brooklyn forwards Kris Humphries and Gerald Wallace and Boston guard Rajon Rondo. Rondo scored six points and had three assists, which ends his streak of double-digit assists at 37 straight games.

NBA
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Washington Wizards 84, Portland Trail Blazers 82
San Antonio Spurs 110, Orlando Magic 89
Detroit Pistons 117, Phoenix Suns 77
Atlanta Hawks 94, Charlotte Bobcats 91
Oklahoma City Thunder 120, Houston Rockets 98
New York Knicks 102, Milwaukee Bucks 88
Utah Jazz 96, New Orleans Hornets 84
Memphis Grizzlies 103, Toronto Raptors 82
Los Angeles Clippers 101, Minnesota Timberwolves 95

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Illinois Tops Georgia Tech; Bradley Wins Big

>>Illini Tops Georgia Tech In ACC/Big Ten Challenge

Joseph Bertrand made 3-pointers on consecutive possessions and scored every point in a 10-0 run to ignite No. 22 Illinois to a 75-62 victory over Georgia Tech on Wednesday night in an ACC-Big Ten Challenge game.

Illinois (8-0) took charge behind Bertrand, who also scored on a drives in the decisive surge to lift the Illini from a 58-54 deficit late in the second half.

The Illini finished the game on a 21-4 run.

Bertrand scored 12 of his 15 points in the second half. Brandon Paul also scored 15 points for the Illini while forward Tyler Griffey and guard D.J. Richardson had 14 points apiece.

Kammeon Holsey led Georgia Tech (4-2) with 14 points while Jason Morris and Mfon Udofia scored 10 points apiece. The Yellow Jackets appeared to grab control with a 12-3 run midway through the second half for a 54-50 lead.

>>Duke Drops Ohio State

(Durham, NC) -- Mason Plumlee tallied 21 points and 17 rebounds to help power number-two Duke over numer-four Ohio State, 73-68, in the ACC / Big Ten Challenge. Rasheed Sulaimon added 17 points for the Blue Devils, who improved to 7-and-0. Quinn Cook chipped in with 12 points, eight assists and six boards in the win. Deshaun Thomas scored 16 points for the Buckeyes, who led 31-23 at the half. Aaron Craft and Lenzelle Smith Jr. each had 11 points in the setback, which moves OSU to 4-and-1.

NCAA Top-25 Basketball ("USA Today" Rankings)
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#9 Arizona Wildcats 93, Northern Arizona Lumberjacks 50
Boise State Broncos 83, #11 Creighton Bluejays 70
Miami Hurricanes 67, #14 Michigan State Spartans 59
#20 UNLV Rebels 85, UC Irvine Anteaters 57
#22 Illinois Fighting Illini 75, Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets 62
#23 New Mexico Lobos 76, Mercer Bears 58
#24 UCLA Bruins 82, Cal State Northridge 56

>>Purdue Beats Clemson In ACC/Big Ten Challenge

(Clemson, SC) -- Purdue picked up a road win downing Clemson, 73-61, in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge behind 22 points from D.J. Byrd. The victory put the Boilermakers back at the .500 mark at 3-and-3. Purdue hosts Xavier on Saturday.

>>Bradley Tops Central Michigan

Tyshon Pickett and Jordan Prosser scored 17 points and Bradley breezed to an 82-65 win over Central Michigan Wednesday night.

Prosser's total, in 21 minutes, was a career high for the junior center. He was 8 of 11 from the floor, Pickett was 8 of 12 and the Braves (5-1) shot 54% from the field. Walt Lemon Jr. and Dyricus Simms-Edwards scored 14 apiece for Bradley, and Jake Eastman added 12 points.

Kyle Randall was the only Central Michigan player in double figures with 21 points. The Chippewas (3-3) shot 36% from the floor.

CMU outrebounded Bradley 36-34, but the Braves owned a 66-24 scoring advantage in the paint.

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LeRoy Man Gets Life Sentence For Sex Assaults

A judge in central Illinois has sentenced a 55-year-old LeRoy man to life in prison for the sexual assault of 3 girls.

Thomas Campbell was convicted in October of predatory sexual assault.

Judge Robert Freitag agreed with Assistant State's Attorney Karle Koritz that Campbell was eligible for life in prison. An Illinois law provides the most serious punishment for those convicted of predatory assault of 2 or more victims.

After the hearing, the prosecutor said the sentence will bring some peace to the victims.

Campbell says he plans to file an appeal.

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DJWH To Transfer Ambulance Service To PSI Saturday Morning

Come Saturday morning, Paramedic Services of Illinois will be the official ambulance provider of DeWitt County.

CEO of the Dr. John Warner Hospital, Earl Sheehy says effective 7am Saturday morning, they will be turning over the service to PSI. He says titles for vehicles and equipment have been transfered over, and they have received the money for everything.

[audio:113012endambulance1.mp3] [/audio]

Both PSI and the hospital had entered into negotiations over equipment and supplies after PSI was chosen the provider to replace the DJWH. Those negotiations led PSI to purchasing all four of the hospital's vehicles. Sheehy notes this was a surprise because they had placed the fourth vehicle into an auction but were never able to sell it for what they wanted.

[audio:113012endambulance2.mp3] [/audio]

From the onset, this has always been about making the hospital more financially stable. Sheehy says having the hospital and ambulance separate will accomplish that. He says in negotiating with PSI there was a spirit of cooperation and both parties were very willing to work together. Sheehy says he was never worried they wouldn't get something worked out for the transactions.

[audio:113012endambulance3.mp3] [/audio]

Because the hospital is owned by the city, they had to receive fair market value for both the ambulances and the equipment purchased by PSI. Sheehy says they received what they feel is fair market value.

PSI has retained several current employees of the ambulance department, the ones they did not retain, the hospital will be laying off.

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Two Arrested In Connection With Maroa Murder

Just after 7:30 a.m. on Monday it was reported a female subject came home from work and found her husband, 23-year old Justin E. Mentzer, inside their residence severely injured and unresponsive at the 200th block of East Washington Street in Maroa. Mentzer was later declared dead.

At approximately 11:30 a.m., Maroa Police Chief Brad Wilkey requested investigative assistance from the Illinois State Police and the Macon County Sheriff’s Office. An investigative team, led by Illinois State Police Zone 5, was formed with officers from the Maroa Police Department, Macon County Sheriff’s Office, Macon County Coroner’s Office, Macon County State’s Attorney’s Office, Dewitt County Sheriff’s Office, Illinois State Police Crime Scene Services, District 10 Patrol and Zone 5 Investigations. The investigation was handled as a homicide from the onset.

Two suspects were arrested for First Degree Murder, Home Invasion, and Aggravated Robbery. At approximately 10:00 p.m. Monday, 21-year old Douglas W. Taylor of and 21-year old Terris D. Warnsley, both of Maroa, were taken into custody without incident and transported to the Macon County Jail, pending formal charges. Taylor is currently being held at the Macon County Jail on $10,000,000 bond. Warnsley is also being held at the Macon County Jail and was scheduled for a bond hearing yesterday.

An autopsy was conducted and the preliminary cause of death was listed as multiple blunt and sharp force injuries due to an assault.

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Former Northwestern Football Star To Run For Illinois Congress

Former Northwestern University football star Napoleon Harris is running to replace Jesse Jackson Jr. in Congress.

Harris was just elected to the Illinois Senate, but he says he's been getting overwhelming support for his plan to run for the 2nd Congressional District seat.

Harris is a Dixmoor native who was a first-round pick of the Oakland Raiders in 2002 and played seven seasons in the NFL. He now owns two Beggars Pizza franchises in the Chicago area.

Harris is joining what's expected to be a crowded field bidding to replace Jackson, who resigned last week - citing his ongoing treatment for bipolar disorder.

Harris praised Jackson and says he'd like to continue the work he's done in Congress.

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Lawmakers Move For More Tax Transparency

Illinois businesses may soon be required to post their income tax information online. Senate President John Cullerton says it's not about changing tax rates or eliminating loopholes. It's about getting accurate information and being transparent.

[audio:rddBizTax1.mp3] [/audio]

Cullerton says more transparency will help lawmakers make informed policy decisions.

[audio:rddBizTax2.mp3] [/audio]

State Representative Barbara Flynn Currie says this will ensure that everyone, including corporations, are paying their fair share.

[audio:rddBizTax3.mp3] [/audio]

Only eight-percent of the state's revenue from taxes and fees comes from corporate income taxes, while 55-percent comes from personal income taxes. State Representative Barbara Flynn Currie says this will help lawmakers create policy that is fair for everyone in the state. The disclosure would start for this year's taxes but the public wouldn't learn about it for two years so businesses' decisions aren't impacted by the disclosure.

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Lady Maroons Cruise Over Heyworth

@ HEYWORTH


CLINTON (6-1)   56
HEYWORTH       31
 
SCORING BY QUARTER:
CLINTON          15    16    11    14
HEYWORTH      8     12      9      2
 
CLINTON SCORING:
ENNIS 1-0-2, GINGER 3-0-7, HICKMAN 2-3-7,
TOOL 4-0-9, TOOHILL 4-0-8, SCOTT 4-0-9, BIEBER 4-5-13
TOTALS 22-8-56
 
HEYWORTH SCORING:
SINN 1-2-4,  ROSS 4-3-11, PREHODA 1-0-2, BEEHN 2-0-5,
LOBB 1-1-3, HOEGGER 2-1-6 
TOTALS 11-7-31
 
THREE POINT BASKETS:
CLINTON  3 (GINGER; TOOL, SCOTT)
HEYWORTH 2 (HOEGGER, BEEHN)

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Medical Marijuana Up For Debate This Week

A proposal to legalize marijuana for medical use could come up for debate this week. State Representative Lou Lang, who is sponsoring the proposal, says this is about helping sick people have a better quality of life.

[audio:rddMedMari4.mp3] [/audio]

Lang says the law would be heavily regulated and people will only be allowed to purchase two ounces in a two week period.

[audio:rddMedMari1.mp3] [/audio]

Representative Lang says Illinois could soon be among the 18 states that allows sick people to use marijuana.

[audio:rddMedMari2.mp3] [/audio]

Representative Lang feels legalizing marijuana for medical purposes could help reduce crime.

[audio:rddMedMari3.mp3] [/audio]

Lang has failed to garner enough support in years past but he believes he has at least 60 votes to pass the bill and send it over to the Senate. His proposal would legalize medical marijuana for patients with debilitating conditions, such as multiple sclerosis and cancer. Patients would have to get a background check before being approved and would also have to register with the state's Department of Health. Lang wants to pass the measure on a trial basis and after three years, lawmakers would have to revisit the idea and decide whether to keep it in place.

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Funeral Services Set For Trooper Killed During Traffic Stop

Services for an Illinois State Police trooper struck and killed by a tractor-trailer during a traffic stop will be at his alma mater high school.

State Police say 32-year-old motorcycle Trooper Kyle Deatherage died at the scene of the accident shortly after 9 a.m. Monday along Interstate 55 near Litchfield. That's about 55 miles northeast of St. Louis.

State Police Director Hiram Grau says Deatherage was a married father of 2 children and had been a trooper since May 2009.

There's no word on any charges.

Spengel-Boulanger Funeral Home in Highland says Deatherage's funeral will be at 10 a.m. Saturday at Triad High School in Troy. Visitation will be there from 4:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. Friday, then again from 9 a.m. Saturday until service time.

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University of Illinois Grad Employees Reach Deal With University

A union representing graduate employees of the University of Illinois has reached a deal on a tentative contract with the university.

The deal comes after seven months of negotiations averts a strike.

Stephanie Seawell is a spokeswoman for the Graduate Employees Organization. She says members were to be briefed Tuesday night on the details.

She declined to reveal details until voting is finished. That's expected to take several days.

The critical issues were wages, health care and protection of tuition waivers.

Earlier this month, the union had approved a strike after negotiations failed to produce an agreement.

The contract expired in August, and a federal mediator was recently brought in. The mediator was involved in Tuesday's negotiations.

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Wife Arrested After Husband Found Decapitated

Sangamon County Police have arrested Juatasha McCaster's in connection to killing her husband, 22-year-old Norman McCaster. Norman was missing his head, arms, and legs when he was discovered in rural Mechanicsburg late last month. Sangamon County Sheriff Neil Williamson says it was good detective work that led them to believe Juatasha may be involved.

[audio:rddwilliamson1.mp3] [/audio]

Sheriff Neil Williamson says Norman's wife, Juatash McCaster, has been arrested but the investigation is still ongoing.

[audio:rddwilliamson2.mp3] [/audio]

The McCasters were married for about two years. Williamson says neither had criminal records that he knew of, nor were they involved in the drug trade. McMaster is being held on charges of concealment of a homicidal death and obstruction of justice. No formal charges have yet been filed and more charges are expected. She's being held in the Sangamon County Jail on five-million dollars bond. Her first court appearance is scheduled for tomorrow afternoon at 3:00.

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Emerald Ash Borer Threatens City's Ash Trees

The invasive pest, the Emerald Ash Borer, or EAB, continues to pop up in parts of Illinois, threatening the Ash Tree population of the state.

DeWitt County has had sitings of the EAB earlier this year, however, the City of Clinton has not. City Arborist, Steve Lobb explains this does not necessarily bode well for the City's Ash population. He says data shows once it has shown itself in a county, it is county wide.

[audio:112812eabclinton1.mp3] [/audio]

With a large number of mature ash trees in the city of Clinton, the Clinton Tree Commission is working to be prepared for it. Lobb explains research and the knowledge of the EAB has come a long ways since it first showed up over a decade ago.

[audio:112812eabclinton2.mp3] [/audio]

There are various forms of treatment to help preserve the ash tree population. Lobb says to do that to all the trees because very expensive. He notes there are a few ash trees currently in key spots the Tree Commission is chemically treating in hopes of saving them.

[audio:112812eabclinton3.mp3] [/audio]

The emerald ash borer is a small, metallic-green beetle native to Asia. Its larvae burrow into the bark of ash trees, causing the trees to starve and eventually die. While the beetle does not pose any direct risk to public health, it does threaten the ash tree canopy. Several dozen counties in the northeastern and central part of the state are under quarantine to slow the spread of the beetle. The quarantine prohibits the intrastate movement of potentially-contaminated wood products, including ash trees, limbs and branches and all types of firewood.

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Monticello Gearing Up For Kickoff To Christmas With Weekend Full of Holiday Events

A busy weekend is on tap in the city of Monticello.

Several events kick off the Christmas season starting Friday. Sue Gortner, Executive Director of the Monticello Chamber of Commerce explains their "Reds of Christmas" event takes place on the downtown Monticello Square. Gortner says downtown businesses will be open for those who attend to shop through. The event is also a red wine tasting event.

[audio:112812monticellochristmas1.mp3] [/audio]

"Lunch with Santa On The Train" will bring several hundred people to the community. The event is so popular, Gortner says tickets go on sale in June and are sold out usually shortly after they go on sale. "Lunch With Santa" allows young kids the individual opportunity with Santa to tell him what they want for Christmas. Over the almost 20 years of the event, Gortner says the event has almost become a generational event.

[audio:112812monticellochristmas3.mp3] [/audio]

The annual Monticello Christmas parade will take place Saturday as well, which usually sees over 50 entries every year and a couple thousand people generally take to the streets to watch. Gortner says the parade has been going for over 50 years and has received a tremendous amount of community support.

[audio:112812monticellochristmas2.mp3] [/audio]

The "Reds of Christmas" event is from 5:30 to 8:30 Friday evening. Tickets are $8 in advance and there are a limited number left.

The Monticello Christmas Parade kicks off Saturday morning at 11:30.

For more information you can visit the Monticello Chamber's website at www.monticellochamber.org. You can also find them on Facebook and Twitter.

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Mainstreet Lincoln Records Record Number of Entries For Annual Christmas Parade

The annual Lincoln Christmas parade takes place Thursday night.

Mainstreet Lincoln hosts the parade each year, which turns out great community support. Mayor of the City of Lincoln, Keith Snyder explains this year's theme is "Sending Holiday Greetings To Your Loved Ones."

[audio:112912lincolnparade1.mp3] [/audio]

Lincoln is one of the few communities who still do an evening parade. Snyder feels it brings a little more of a Christmas feel with the chill in the air. He notes sometimes the weather holds up so it's sometimes nice, other times, it can be very cold.

[audio:112912lincolnparade2.mp3] [/audio]

Each year, Mainstreet Lincoln picks a theme for the parade, and Lisa LaForge with Mainstreet Lincoln explains it is to give all the groups creating their floats somewhat of a guide. LaForge says each year it is a lot of fun to see what the community groups will come up with, and she feels it is a big reason people within the community come back each year for the parade.

[audio:112912lincolnparade3.mp3] [/audio]

Tonight's parade gets underway at 5:30 and will start at Wyatt and Kickapoo Streets in Lincoln. The floats will then go down Kickapoo, then right at Broadway, and a final right on McLean Street.

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Two Illinois Universities Among Most Dangerous

Two of Illinois' public universities are among the most dangerous in the nation.  Business Insider puts Southern Illinois University Carbondale at number 15 and Western Illinois University at number 20.  The rankings are calculated using FBI crime data for property and violent crimes from 2008 and 2011.  During that time period, there were 16 violent crimes and 291 property crimes at SIU.  Western had ten violent crimes and 161 property crimes.  Property crimes include burglary, auto theft, arson and larceny.  Violent crimes include murder, manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault.  Officials at both schools disagree with the results and say safety is their number one priority.

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Monticello Sages defeat Rantoul Eagles

The Monticello Sages defeat the Rantoul Eagles by a score of 56-50 on Tuesday Night. The Sages were led by Matt Jurse with 19 points 8 rebounds and 5 assists. Bryan Phipps also chipped in with 15 points and 10 rebounds. Monticello Sages also come out with a win with a score of 58-19. Rantoul Eagles were led by Tanner McClain with 15 points. With the win the Sages improve to 1-0. Tune in Friday as the Sages take on Bismark. You can hear the game live on 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com

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Illini Enter USA Today Top-25

A pair of local college basketball teams did some moving in the latest "USA Today" Top-25 Poll. Missouri fell from 14th down to 15th after going 2-and-1 this weekend at the Battle 4 Atlantis. Illinois cracked the poll at number-22 after moving to 7-and-0 this weekend. The Illini host Georgia Tech tomorrow in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge.

NCAA Top-25 Basketball ("USA Today" Rankings)
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#11 Kansas Jayhawks 70, San Jose State Spartans 57

NCAA Top-25 Basketball ("USA Today" Rankings)
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9:30 p.m. - #1 Indiana Hoosiers host #13 North Carolina Tar Heels
7:30 p.m. - #3 Michigan Wolverines host #18 North Carolina State Wolfpack

>>Illini Ride Hot Shooting To Undefeated Start

Illinois coach John Groce had a handful of questions about his team when it traveled to Hawaii for the EA Sports Maui Invitational.

Four wins later, he has some answers.

Groce says for starters he knows his team can take a punch and fight back. The Illini (7-0) fell behind against Hawaii before coming back to win in overtime, and then went on to three more victories and the tournament title.

Groce, who is in his first year at the school, believes his team showed the resolve it lacked during a dreadful run of 13 losses in 15 games last season.

Illinois are at home as they get ready to take on Georgia Tech tomorrow night in the Big Ten/ACC Shootout.

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All Big Ten Selections Made

Career touchdown leader Montee Ball of Wisconsin was selected the Big Ten's top running back for the second straight year and was a first-team all-conference pick by both the coaches and media.

The announcement Monday came two days after he became the NCAA's all-time leader in touchdowns. He set the record with his 79th TD when he scored on a 17-yard run Saturday against Penn State.

With 1,528 yards rushing and 18 touchdowns this season, it was hardly a surprise that the coaches and media both picked Ball. They also went with conference rushing leader Le'Veon Bell of Michigan State (1,648 yards), but they were split at quarterback.

Two Illinois football players were honored by the Big Ten Conference yesterday. Offensive tackle Hugh Thornton and defensive lineman Michael Bucahanan were each named to the All-Big Ten Second Team.

The media went with Ohio State's Braxton Miller and the coaches choosing Nebraska's Taylor Martinez.

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Maroa Police Investigating Man Found Dead Monday Morning

Monday morning, Maroa Police were called to the corner of East Jackson and North Hickory Streets at a mobile home park. Michael Day, Macon County Coroner, has pronounced 23-year old Justin Mentzer dead at 8:25 a.m.

An autopsy has been scheduled for today at the McLean County Coroner's Morgue in Bloomington. The exact cause of death will be identified at that time, and for now, authorities are saying the death is suspicious. No further information can be released until the autopsy has been conducted.

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Report for 11-27

November 27, 2012

 

Jail Population: 63

Summons Served: 1

Warrant Arrests: 1

 

Ronnie Hamilton, 33, Decatur, was Arrested on a Dewitt Co Warrant charging him with indirect criminal contempt. Hamilton posted the necessary bond and was released.

 

ALL SUSPECTS ARE PRESUMED INNOCENT UNTIL FOUND GUILTY IN A COURT OF LAW.

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Clinton Police Report for 11-27

CITATIONS

11/24/12

HANNAH N. MILES 16, CLINTON DISOBEYING STOP SIGN. NOTICE TO APPEAR ISSUED

 

11/25/12

LUCAS J. PERRING 20, FARMER CITY SPEEDING 40 MPH IN A 30 MPH ZONE. BOND POSTED

TIFFANY L. HART 31, CLINTON SPEEDING 44 MPH IN A 30 MPH ZONE AND NO VALID REGISTRATION. BOND POSTED

 

ON 11/24/12 CLINTON POLICE ARRESTED DANIEL A. WOODARD 31, CLINTON FOR AGGRAVATED DOMESTIC BATTERY. WOODARD WAS TRANSPORTED TO THE DEWITT COUNTY JAIL AND RELEASED TO CORRECTIONS.

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Clinton Community Educational Foundation Hears From Classroom Grant Recipients

The Clinton Community Educational Foundation recently held their annual dinner that headlines the scholarships the Foundation hands out and also the classroom grants.

At the annual dinner, those in attendance heard from former student Nolan Severson who is a freshman at a Missouri school. Member of the CCEF, Claudine Wargel explains he spoke to the group about his studies and future goals. Severson was the recipient of the Beck's Scholarship.

[audio:112812ccefdinner1.mp3] [/audio]

One of the classroom grants distributed last year benefited the Clinton High School Physical Education department. Kay Wertz spoke to the group about how heart rate monitors and supplies they have received from the CCEF benefit the student. Wargel says they can see how the effects of those supplies to the PE Department are improving the physical health of students.

[audio:112812ccefdinner2.mp3] [/audio]

Two other classroom grants CCEF members and donors heard about from their annual dinner was a grant that benefited the library and the science classrooms. Wargel explains the grant the library received puts books on tapes and helps students who have missed classroom time to catch up quicker. The science classrooms grant demonstrates how books and science coincide.

[audio:112812ccefdinner3.mp3] [/audio]

Wargel says each year they are not always able to hear from each teacher that receives a classroom grant, but it is always nice for donors and board members of the Educational Foundation to hear how the grants are benefiting the teachers and students of the district.

Each year the CCEF receives applications from the district's teachers and department heads for things they would like in their classrooms. The biggest hurdle is deciding which classrooms are in most need of financial help. The funds distributed come from the various fundraising efforts done through the year the Educational Foundation, which include their recognition wall which now sits outside the High School's Sports entrance, along with several other smaller events.

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Court Rejects Plea To Block Taping of Police

The Supreme Court has rejected an Illinois prosecutor's plea to allow enforcement of a law aimed at stopping people from recording police officers on the job.

The justices on Monday left in place a lower court ruling that found that the state's anti-eavesdropping law violates free speech rights when used against people who tape law enforcement officers. The law sets out a maximum prison term of 15 years.

The American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit in 2010 against Cook County State's Attorney Anita Alvarez to block prosecution of ACLU staff for recording police officers performing their duties in public places, 1 of the group's long-standing monitoring missions.

Opponents of the law say the right to record police is vital to guard against abuses.

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Illinois Legislative Leaders Back Tax 'Transparency'

Democratic leaders in the Illinois General Assembly are backing legislation that would require some corporations to reveal their income-tax bills.

Senate President John Cullerton and House Majority Leader Barbara Flynn Currie will announce their support Tuesday for the measure. Tuesday is the first day of the Legislature's fall veto session.

The Chicago Democrats want publicly traded corporations to post online the amount of corporate income taxes they paid two years prior to publication. They say that would reduce potential competitive disadvantage to businesses that must publicize expenditures.

Officials say two-thirds of corporations pay no income taxes because of deductions, tax breaks and "loopholes."

Backers say lawmakers can't decide on a fair corporate tax structure without knowing what businesses pay.

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Quinn Sets Election Dates To Replace Jackson Jr.

The primary election to replace former Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr. will be held on February 26th.  It will coincide with other local elections in an effort to cut back on some of the costs.  That gives potential candidates about three months to make their case with the 420-thousand voters in the district.  The date of the general election hasn't been set in stone yet.  It's supposed to be held by March 19th, but Governor Quinn is trying to have it pushed back to April 9th.  That would require a change in Illinois law, which requires the election take place within 115 days,  but Quinn says pushing it back could further ease the cost burden. 

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Leucadia Bill Could Come Up For Override Vote

Governor Quinn rejected a plan to build a synthetic natural gas plant in Chicago but lawmakers may attempt to override the veto while they're in Springfield. Mark Biel with the Chemical Industry Council of Illinois, says that would be a bad move for the people of Illinois.

[audio:rddLeucadia1.mp3] [/audio]

Ameren and NiCor customers could foot the bill for a new synthetic natural gas plant if lawmakers override Governor Quinn's veto of the Leucadia proposal. Biel urges lawmakers not to push the bill.

[audio:rddLeucadia2.mp3] [/audio]

Biel says the plant will cost about eight-billion dollars over the next 30 years if the proposal is overridden. Lawmakers passed the bill in the final days of session back in May. Governor Quinn rejected the bill, claiming it doesn't include enough protections for consumers. Leucadia officials say they're looking to build the plant in another state but Biel says lawmakers could still try to push the bill during veto session.

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State Trooper Killed On Interstate 55

An Illinois State Trooper was reportedly struck and killed during a traffic stop on Interstate 55 this morning.  The trooper was off his motorcycle and standing next to a car when he was struck by a semi.  Officials with the Illinois State Police have not yet confirmed the death.  The accident happened near mile marker 62, near Litchfield.  

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Health Officials Investigate Salmonella Cluster

Workers at a McDonald's in Bloomington are undergoing health tests as officials investigate a cluster of salmonella cases possibly linked to the fast food restaurant.

The McLean County Health Department announced the investigation Monday. The agency and the Illinois Department of Public Health are looking into the cases of illness among people who ate at a number of restaurants from Oct. 18 through Nov. 11.

A McDonald's restaurant on South Main Street in Bloomington has voluntarily closed for now. Employees will be allowed to return to work when lab tests confirm they are safe to serve food.

Symptoms of illness caused by salmonella include diarrhea, vomiting, fever and stomach cramps.

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Clinton Crime Stoppers Seeking Information Regarding Recent Burglaries

The Clinton Police Department is seeking your information regarding several Burglaries to local businesses.

In the months of September, October and November 2012 the Clinton Illinois area has experienced several Burglaries to businesses. It was reported to the Clinton Police Department that an unknown person(s) had gained entry into the businesses and while inside committed a theft.

If you have any information regarding this crime or any other crimes please call Clinton Crime Stoppers at (217)-935-3333. Callers remain anonymous and will receive a cash reward up to $1,000 for any information leading to an arrest.

Crime Stoppers wants you information not your name!

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Senator-Elect Chapin Rose Making Rounds To New Areas of 51st Senate District

One local lawmaker has quite a transition to tackle going from the Illinois House of Representatives to the Illinois Senate.

Senator-elect Chapin Rose is using the next six weeks until he takes over in his new position to familiarize himself with a new district. Rose explains in preparing to make the switch from representing about 105,000 residents in five counties in the House to about 218,000 in the ten counties he will be representing in the new 51st Senate District, the time of transition includes meeting new district officials and residents.

[audio:112712rosesenate1.mp3] [/audio]

The new 51st Senate District includes all of Shelby, Moultrie, Douglas, DeWitt, & Piatt Counties, while also covering portions of Macon, McLean, Champaign, Edgar, and Vermilion Counties. Since the November 6th election, Rep. Rose has focused on the “Route 51 Corridor” from Bloomington to Decatur and Mclean, DeWitt, and Macon Counties. While he still has several stops scheduled in the coming month, Rep. Rose says he has already talked with local officials including the McLean County Farm Bureau, Village of Heyworth, Heyworth School District, Village of Clinton, Clinton School District, Dr. John Warner Hospital in Clinton, Maroa-Forsyth School District, Blue Ridge School District, Village of LeRoy, LeRoy School District, Argenta-Oreana School District along with numerous mayors throughout the new district.

[audio:112712rosesenate2.mp3] [/audio]

The Senator-Elect explains he will be putting together an advisory board where he will ask officials from the various areas of his new district to serve on so he can get a balanced perspective. He explains since his district is so large, he wants to make sure he is informed of the many issues happening everywhere, not just where he may be at a given time.

[audio:112712rosesenate3.mp3] [/audio]

It is very important to Rose that local leaders and citizens can ‘put a face with the name,’ when they need something. He is also focusing right now on meeting and getting to know the folks in the area’s he doesn’t currently represent, but will in another month.

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MLB Notes

>>Cardinals Receive Payout From Playoffs

(Undated) -- The Cardinals have received a payout of $7.8-million in postseason revenue for their playoff run this season. The team voted to award 56 full shares to players which works out to over 122-thousand-dollars each. The Giants, who beat St. Louis in the NLCS, took in a payout of $23.5-million which broke the record set by the 2006 World Series champion Cardinals.

>>Cubs Hire Deer As Assistant Hitting Coach

(Chicago, IL) -- The Cubs have hired former major leaguer Rob Deer as an assistant hitting coach. The 52-year-old has been out of the game over the past four years. He last worked as a minor league hitting coach with the Padres. Deer will work with James Rowson, who replaced Rudy Jaramillo in June.

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NFL Notes

>>Harbaugh To Name Starting QB Mid-Week

(Santa Clara, CA) -- San Francisco 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh will reportedly name his starting quarterback for this week's game on Wednesday. Colin Kaepernick got the start in place of Alex Smith last week despite the fact Smith was medically cleared to play following a concussion. On Monday, Harbaugh referred to Smith as his starter even though Kaepernick played in Sunday's win over the Saints. Kaepernick was not told he was starting until Harbaugh made the announcement in a private team meeting on Saturday night. The Niners take on the Rams in St. Louis this Sunday.

>>Panthers Claw Eagles Behind Newton

(Philadelphia, PA) -- Cam Newton did it all as the Panthers took down the Eagles, 30-22. Newton was 18-of-28 for 306 yards and two touchdowns and ran for 52 yards and two more scores for Carolina. Brandon LaFell had three catches for 74 yards and a touchdown as the Panthers moved to 3-and-8 on the season. Bryce Brown powered the Philadelphia offense with 178 yards on 19 carries with two touchdowns, but also lost two fumbles. Nick Foles was 16-for-21 for just 119 yards in his second-career start. The Eagles lost their seventh straight game and fell to 3-and-8.

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Bucks Down Bulls

rsan Ilyasova scored 14 of his 18 points in the second half and the Milwaukee Bucks overcame a 27-point deficit in a stunning 93-92 win over the Chicago Bulls on Monday night.

Richard Hamilton scored a season-high 30 points for the Bulls but missed a shot at the buzzer that could have won it.

Ilyasova led a 31-4 second half-run as the Bucks snapped a 9-game losing streak to Chicago and prevented the Bulls from moving past Milwaukee into first place in the Central Division.

Ilyasova scored 12 points in the fourth quarter when Milwaukee outscored Chicago 30-12. Milwaukee played the entire fourth quarter with five reserves: Ilyasova, Epke Udoh, Beno Udrih, Mike Dunleavy and Doron Lamb.

John Henson, Udrih and Udoh all scored 11 points while Monta Ellis added 10. The Bucks hadn't beaten Chicago since April 6, 2010.

NBA
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Brooklyn Nets 96, New York Knicks 89 (OT)
San Antonio Spurs 118, Washington Wizards 92
Detroit Pistons 108, Portland Trail Blazers 101
Memphis Grizzlies 84, Cleveland Cavaliers 78
Oklahoma City Thunder 114, Charlotte Bobcats 69
Utah Jazz 105, Denver Nuggets 103
New Orleans Hornets 105, Los Angeles Clippers 98

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Illinois Writers Respond To Novel Challenge

For some contestants in this year's national novel writing contest, getting 50,000 words on the page by the end of this month has meant hiding away in libraries, or shutting off cell phones and Internet connections.

The National Novel Writing Month contest drew thousands of Illinois participants this year.

1 of them is Megan Metcalf, a 24-year-old resident of Zion. She's on target to complete the challenge by Friday, but only because she switched off phones and the Internet each weeknight until she had at least 1,667 words down in her novel "Poison Moon," a tale about werewolves.

The literary endurance contest has 250,000 global participants and is aimed at helping them discover their inner storyteller.

Some even go on to publish their work.

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Officials Remind Neighbors To Keep Eye On Elderly Neighbors

State officials say this is a good time of year to keep a close eye on older family members who may need assistance.

November is National Family Caregivers Month. Illinois Department on Aging Director John Holton says it's also the kickoff to the holiday season and a good time for families to use the time they spend together to look for signs that older relatives may need more help.

Those signs include decreased mobility, change in appetite, unfilled medical prescriptions and not paying bills.

The department is reminding people that there are more than 100 resources centers statewide for caregivers.

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Online Shopping May Not Be Best

Some shoppers may be turning to the Internet for holiday deals but that may not be the best way to go. Peter Gill, with the Illinois Retail Merchants Association, says local businesses have found a way to compete with the online venders.

[audio:rddShop3.mp3] [/audio]

Gill says the local stores have also built up their websites and learned to promote social networking sites, like Facebook and Twitter. And, many retailers offered in-store only deals.

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Quinn Faces Key Leadership Test In Coming Weeks

The weeks ahead may be Gov. Pat Quinn's ultimate test.

He has set a January deadline for solving the state's pension crisis - a decades-old problem he says he was "put on this earth" to solve.

He's facing lawmakers intent on expanded gambling in the state despite his veto. And all of it is magnified by the emerging 2014 campaign for governor, with Republicans already lining up to take him on and a few of his party colleagues considering it too.

Quinn insists in an interview with The Associated Press that he runs Illinois as a peacemaker, gathering everyone together, hearing them out and trying for consensus.

But as the Chicago Democrat enters critical weeks, he looks more at home in his old ways as a populist rallying the public.

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Illinois Corn Growers Association Elects New Head

 width=The Illinois Corn Growers Association has new leadership.

The group recently elected Esmond farmer Paul Taylor as the new president. He's served on the group's board for six years, most recently as vice president.

The association coordinates and conducts market development and public relations programs to help corn producers. The board has 15 directors for districts representing different regions of the state and other at-large directors.

The board held a meeting earlier this month in Bloomington where they also elected other members of the state board.

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Trends of Scams Continue To Change; Challenge Local Seniors

An unfortunate trend continues to show itself to the areas senior citizen population.

Financial scams are becoming increasingly common amongst the areas senior citizens, and DeWitt County Sheriff Jered Shofner says with the holidays coming up, there are some trends they are already beginning to see. He says the most common right now involves seniors who have allegedly won a drawing or lottery they did not enter, and are asked to give $200, for example, to receive their prize.

[audio:112112seniorscams1.mp3] [/audio]

While the trends in scams are always changing, the Sheriff warns seniors, and others, that when you have to pay to receive a prize for a lottery or drawing you did not enter into, it is most likely a scam.

[audio:112112seniorscams2.mp3] [/audio]

Those pre-paid debit cards have become a major source of money laundering in the past few years. Sheriff Shofner says once a person can take stolen money and put it onto one of those cards, it erases any trace law enforcement can follow. He encourages anyone who needs to use one of those to claim a prize or anything like that, to look very closely at the situation first.

[audio:112112seniorscams3.mp3] [/audio]

Sheriff Shofner encourages anyone who thinks they may be getting scammed to not be ashamed about it. He notes if one person has had it happen to them, then it has likely happened to someone else. To report a scam, receive information about something you have received via mail, email, or phone call, you can contact the Sheriff's office at 935-3096 or the Clinton Police Department at 935-9441.

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Lincoln Developing 5-Year Street Work Plan

 width=The City of Lincoln is embarking on a plan to update their streets.

Over the next several weeks, city officials will analyze the condition of their streets. Mayor of Lincoln, Keith Snyder says the topic of streets is always a popular topic because residents want safe streets and good streets to drive on. He explains analyzing their streets' conditions will give them a long term strategy instead of going month by month on their goals.

[audio:112612lincolnstreets1.mp3] [/audio]

The City Council of Lincoln has engaged an outside firm to aid them in their outlook to the future. Mayor Snyder says there are many factors that go into top priority streets. He says the biggest factor though is the 'drive-ability' of a street. Other factors include the types of streets and the amount of traffic a street receives.

[audio:112612lincolnstreets2.mp3] [/audio]

A few years ago, the voters of Lincoln voted for a sales tax increase that would go into infrastructure improvements around the city. The Mayor explains those improvements they felt necessary be addressed first have been addressed, but now Mayor Snyder notes he would like to see that money used a little more objectively.

[audio:112612lincolnstreets3.mp3] [/audio]

This plan development has been several months in the making. Mayor Snyder explains they were forced to contract with an outside firm because they had their City Engineer take another job, but they hired a local firm, Prairie Engineers.

Part of the upcoming meetings with Prairie Engineers will be discussion with City Officials. Mayor Snyder hopes to have the five-year plan approved later in December, if not, early January and begin getting some of their target work out for bid and get ahead of the construction bid season.

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Clinton Names New Jr. High School Principal

Clinton Jr. High School has named their successor for current Principal, John Pine.

Last Tuesday evening, the Clinton Board of Education named Drew Goebel as the new Principal of the Junior High School. Superintendent of Clinton Schools Dr. Jeff Holmes says he is very excited about Mr. Goebel taking over the reigns of the Jr. High.

[audio:112612jrhighprincipal1.mp3] [/audio]

Dr. Holmes has many high praises for Mr. Goebel. Dr. Holmes explains Mr. Goebel is a self-starter, who gets things done, he gets along with the kids very well and really understands teachers and effective ways to teach kids. Dr. Holmes also notes Mr. Goebel has been instrumental in helping implement technology into the school and classroom settings.

[audio:112612jrhighprincipal2.mp3] [/audio]

Dr. Holmes says Mr. Goebel has proven to him and the Board of Education he is the right person for the job in his two years as Assistant Principal at the Jr. High. Dr. Holmes calls him 'an outstanding leader' who communicates well with his teachers.

Goebel has served in Clinton before. Goebel was a student teacher for the district nearly a decade ago. Goebel came to the Clinton District after serving as the Assistant Principal at Eureka High School.

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Roll of Dice To Determine Close County Board Race

 width=An election outcome in DeWitt County is so close that county officials will literally roll the dice to determine a winner.

The Nov. 6 contest for the final spot on the DeWitt County Board in District B is tied.

District B has three seats and two newcomers were named winners. However, only one vote separated two other candidates for the third spot.

Terry Ferguson and challenger George Wissmiller were separated by one vote. But after DeWitt County officials conducted a mandatory election canvass with absentee and provisional ballots the race was tied.

The candidates will toss dice in the county clerk's office today.

Wissmiller ran as an independent and is a retired Champaign police officer. Ferguson is a Republican who previously served on the board.

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NHL Cancels More Games Due To Lockout

The NHL cancelled more games on Friday due to the ongoing labor dispute.  The league has now wiped away games through December 14th, as well as the All-Star Weekend in Columbus, Ohio which was scheduled for late January.  The two sides met last week but remain at a standstill. 

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Six College Coaches Fired Following Season Finales

Six Division-One football teams are searching for new head coaches this week.  Auburn fired Gene Chizik Sunday just two years after winning the BCS National Championship.  NC State also parted ways with Tom O'Brien despite a 7-and-5 record and an upset win over Florida State this season.  Another ACC school made a move as Boston College relieved Frank Spaziani of his duties.  Arkansas released John L. Smith from his post on Saturday after the Razorbacks went from being a top-ten team to finishing 4-and-8.  Colorado fired Jon Embree after going a program-worst 1-and-11 this year.  Purdue let Danny Hope go as well despite the Boilermakers' bowl-eligible 6-and-6 mark. 

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Bulls Notes

>>Bulls, Bucks Close Home-And-Home Tonight

(Chicago, IL) -- The Bulls wrap a home-and-home set with the Bucks tonight at United Center. Saturday, Chicago won 93-86 in Milwaukee. The Bulls are 6-and-6 on the season.

>>Chicago Bulls Championship Rings Stolen

(Chicago, IL) -- Police are investigating the theft of four Chicago Bulls championship rings. Investigators say the rings were stolen from a team employee, who noticed they were missing after hiring contractors to work at his home. The rings are personally engraved and are from the years 1991, 1993, 1997 and 1998.

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Bears, Colts, Rams Win; Pack Pounded

>>Bears Bounce Back To Beat Vikings

(Chicago, IL) -- Michael Bush ran for 60 yards and two touchdowns as the Bears bounced back to beat the Vikings 28-10 at Soldier Field. Jay Cutler returned after missing last week's 32-7 loss in San Francisco with a concussion and threw for 188 yards, a TD and an interception. Brandon Marshall had 12 catches for 92 yards while Matt Spaeth had a TD grab for the Bears, who snapped a two-game skid and improved to 8-and-3. Christian Ponder finished 22-of-43 for 159 yards with a TD and a pick for Minnesota, which has lost three-of-four to dip to 6-and-5 on the season. Adrian Peterson ran for 108 yards on 18 carries in defeat.

>>Rams Sweep Both Games From Cardinals

(Glendale, AZ) -- The St. Louis Rams defeated the Arizona Cardinals for the second time this season, 31-17. The first victory came in Week Five. Sam Bradford completed only eight passes, but threw for 205 yards with two touchdowns and an interception. Steven Jackson rumbled for 139 yards on 24 carries, while Chris Givens had five receptions for 115 yards and a TD as St. Louis improved to 4-6-and-1. The Rams picked off Cardinals rookie quarterback Ryan Lindley four times with two of them going back for touchdowns by Janoris Jenkins. Beanie Wells hit pay dirt twice in his first action since Week Three. Larry Fitzgerald was held to three catches and 31 yards receiving. Arizona dropped its seventh straight game to fall to 4-and-7.

>>Colts Clip Bills

(Indianapolis, IN) -- T.Y. Hilton returned a punt and caught a touchdown to pace the Colts to a 20-13 win over the Bills. Andrew Luck threw for 240 yards, the TD and an interception for Indianapolis, which moved to 7-and-4. Reggie Wayne made eight grabs for 102 yards in the win. Stevie Johnson had six receptions for 106 yards in the loss. C.J. Spiller ran for 107 yards on 14 carries for Buffalo, which dropped to 4-and-7. Ryan Fitzpatrick threw for 180 yards with a touchdown and a pick in defeat.

>>Giants Stomp On Packers

(East Rutherford, NJ) -- Eli Manning threw for 249 yards and three touchdowns as the Giants stormed past the Packers, 38-10. Manning tossed his 200th career touchdown pass to move past Phil Simms on the Giants' all-time list. Andre Brown and Ahmad Bradshaw each found the end zone on the ground and powered New York to 147 rushing yards as it improved to 7-and-4. Brown exited the game with a broken leg. Aaron Rodgers threw for 219 yards and a touchdown but tossed an interception and lost a fumble for Green Bay. Jordy Nelson had 71 yards receiving with a score as the Packers fell to 7-and-4.

NFL
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Cincinnati Bengals 34, Oakland Raiders 10
Cleveland Browns 20, Pittsburgh Steelers 14
Denver Broncos 17, Kansas City Chiefs 9
Miami Dolphins 24, Seattle Seahawks 21
Atlanta Falcons 24, Tampa Bay Buccaneers 23
Baltimore Ravens 16, San Diego Chargers 13 (OT)
San Francisco 49ers 31, New Orleans Saints 21

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Northwestern Pounds Illini

Venric Mark rushed for 127 yards and a touchdown as Northwestern improved its chances for a berth in a New Year's Day bowl game, beating Illinois 50-14 on Saturday.

Northwestern quarterback Kain Colter threw for a career-high three touchdowns and the Wildcats (9-3, 5-3 Big Ten) reached nine victories for the first time since 2008.

Penalties and turnovers hurt Illinois (2-10, 0-8), which has lost nine straight and 14 in a row in Big Ten play. The Illini committed four turnovers - including three interceptions - and eight penalties in their season finale.

Northwestern captured the Land of Lincoln Trophy after losing to the Illini in the rivalry game the last two seasons.

Donovonn Young rushed for 74 yards and a touchdown for Illinois, which ranks last in the Big Ten in scoring offense in coach Tim Beckman's first season. Nathan Scheelhaase went 9 for 14 for 91 yards and two interceptions.

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Illini Escapes Gardner-Webb Thanks To Griffey 3; Northwestern Edges ISU

>>Griffey's 3 Helps Illini Beat Gardner-Webb

Tyler Griffey buried a long 3-pointer with 4 seconds left and Illinois survived a scare Sunday by beating Gardner-Webb 63-62.

After winning the Maui Invitational, the Illini (7-0) came home and needed to rally against Gardner-Webb. Griffey's 3 followed a banked-in 3-pointer from Tashan Newsome with 12 seconds left that gave the Runnin' Bulldogs (4-4) a 62-60 lead.

Griffey was 1 of 4 Illinois players to finish with 13 points Sunday with D.J. Richardson, Brandon Paul and Joseph Bertrand. Bertrand added six rebounds.

The Illini overcame cold shooting. They hit just 33% of their first-half shots and led Gardner-Webb 24-23 at halftime.

Donta Harper led the Bulldogs with 16 points. Newsome finished with 11 points.

>>Northwestern Tops ISU in OT

Drew Crawford had 20 points and nine rebounds for Northwestern, leading the Wildcats to a thrilling 72-69 overtime victory Saturday night over Illinois State at the South Padre Island Invitational Tournament.

After Crawford hit a bucket with 25 seconds left and give Northwestern (6-0) a 3-point lead at 55-52, Tyler Brown came through in the clutch for the Redbirds, nailing a 3-pointer to make it 55-all with 10 seconds to go.

In overtime, Brown brought Illinois State (5-1) closer once again, sinking a 3-pointer with 6 seconds left to cut the Wildcats lead to a bucket, 71-69. Crawford hit a free throw after Brown fouled him to make it 72-69 and time expired after Brown turned it over on the ensuing possession.

Brown scored 36 points, making 12 of 20 shot attempts including seven 3-point baskets.

Jackie Carmichael had a double-double with 13 points and 12 rebounds in the loss for Illinois State.

>>Bradley Tops UT-Martin

Walt Lemon Jr. scored 15 points and Bradley breezed to an 80-57 victory over Tennessee-Martin on Saturday.

Jake Eastman added 14 points for the Braves (4-1). Will Egolf had 13 points and a team-high nine rebounds, Jalen Crawford scored 12 and Dyricus Simms-Edwards finished with 11 points.

Myles Taylor had 17 points and nine rebounds before fouling out to lead the Skyhawks (2-4). Mike Liabo scored 15 points and Justin Childs added 12 points for UT-Martin.

Bradley has won all four games in the series between the schools. The Braves led 27-21 at halftime but opened up a 28-point lead late in the game.

NCAA Top-25 Basketball ("USA Today" Rankings)
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#1 Indiana Hoosiers 101, Ball State Cardinals 53
#6 Syracuse Orange 87, Colgate Raiders 51
Cal Poly Mustangs 70, #13 UCLA Bruins 68
#17 Gonzaga Bulldogs 81, Davidson Wildcats 67 (at Orlando, FL)
#19 Michigan State Spartans 63, Louisiana-Lafayette Ragin' Cajuns 60
#22 Oklahoma State Cowboys 81, Portland State Vikings 58
#23 Connecticut Huskies 73, Stony Brook Seawolves 62
#25 San Diego State Aztecs 66, USC Trojans 60

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Holiday Weekend Report

November 24, 2012

 

Jail Population: 65

Summons Served: 1

Warrant Arrests: 3

 

November 25, 2012

 

Jail Population: 62

Summons Served: 2

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

November 26, 2012

 

Jail Population: 64

Summons Served: 0

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

Alan Clary, 33, Wapella, was issued a citation for Operating Uninsured Vehicle. Clary posted his IL Driver’s License as bond and was released.

 

James Eads, 44, Clinton, was issued a citation for Operating Uninsured Vehicle. Eads posted his IL Driver’s License as bond and was released.

 

Bradford Downs, 40, Wapella, was issued a citation for Operating Uninsured Vehicle. Downs was issued a Notice To Appear and was released.

 

Shane Kesler, 26, Bloomington, was issued a citation for Speeding (69 mph in a 55 mph zone). Kesler posted his IL Driver’s License as bond and was released.

 

Liliana Chairez, 27, Decatur, was issued a citation for Speeding (60 mph in a 45 mph zone). Chairez posted her IL Driver’s License as bond and was released.

 

Alexander Keim, 20, Clinton, was issued a citation for Speeding (62 mph in a 45 mph zone). Keim posted her IL Driver’s License as bond and was released.

 

Kameron Bell, 25, Clinton, was issued a citation for Speeding (65 mph in a 45 mph zone). Bell posted his IL Driver’s License as bond and was released.

 

Jessica Robinson, 22, LaSalle, was issued a citation for Speeding (82 mph in a 65 mph zone). Robinson posted the necessary bond and was released.

 

Daniel Buster, 25, Oglesby, was issued a citation for Failure To Wear Seat Belt. Buster Buster posted the necessary bond and was released.

Nathan Buggar, 20, was issued citations for Operating Uninsured Vehicle and Disobey Stop Sign. Buggar was issued a Notice To Appear. Buggar was arrested and charged with Possession Of Cannabis and Possession Of Drug Paraphernalia. Buggar being unable to post the necessary bond, remains lodged in the DeWitt County Jail.

 

ALL SUSPECTS ARE PRESUMED INNOCENT UNTIL FOUND GUILTY IN A COURT OF LAW.

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Clinton's Beth Wickenhauser Named Clinton's Women's Club 'Business Woman of the Year' For 2012

One Clinton School leader was recently bestowed a prestigious yearly honor.

 width=Principal of Clinton's Grade Schools Washington and Douglass Elementary Schools, Beth Wickenhauser recently received the "Clinton Business Women's Club Career Women of the Year" for 2012. Wickenhauser says the award came as quite a surprise, as she was simply asked to come and give a brief presentation on her schools to the Woman's Club.

[audio:112712wickenhauser1.mp3] [/audio]

What makes the award more rewarding for her because she didn't know it was an award they handed out, and as she explains, to receive it not knowing she was being watched is quite an honor.

[audio:112712wickenhauser2.mp3] [/audio]

The Women's Club notified Wickenhauser's family prior to the event, so they were able to enjoy the award being given to her as well. She thanks the Women's Club for the recognition and feels the community and it's groups do a good job of recognizing the good work being done by the many individuals that make Clinton such a great community.

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George Wissmiller Wins Coin Toss, Final County Board Seat; Not Happy With Way It Was Decided

The final seat on the DeWitt County Board for District B was decided by the flip of the coin, and the winning candidate was not pleased with the way it was decided.

 width=Incumbent Terry Ferguson and challenger George Wissmiller flipped a coin Monday afternoon to decide the winner of the final seat for District B on the County Board. Wissmiller ended up winning the coin toss and it was agreed by the candidates Ferguson would call it in the air. Prior to and after the flip Wissmiller maintained his position of disagreeing on how the outcome was decided. Wissmiller prior to the flip went as far as to forfeit the small monetary pay County Board Members receive.

[audio:112712coinflip1.mp3] [/audio]

Wissmiller felt as though a better system would be a simple recount. He says even if the incumbent keeps the seat after the recount, it would be a better system than the one currently in place. All that said, Wissmiller said he would not be forfeiting his seat.

[audio:112712coinflip2.mp3] [/audio]

County Clerk for DeWitt County, and the administrator of the coin flip for this instance, Dana Smith says she has seen close races before but this is the first tie. She explains a lottery of some sort must be done to determine the winner. Originally dice were going to be cast however, Wissmiller did not like that idea, so it was agreed a coin would be flipped.

[audio:112712coinflip3.mp3] [/audio]

Ferguson says he is disappointed with the outcome. He hopes to remain active within the county still in other areas. With a five day window to declare a recount, Ferguson says he does not know yet whether he will ask for one. He wanted to hear all the details behind declaring a recount first before making a decision.

Should the outcome remain the way it is, District B on the County Board will have three new members, along with Wissmiller, will be Republican challengers Mark Gardner and Tom Pruser.

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Clinton Maroons defeat the Deland-Weldon Eagles

The Clinton Maroons defeated the Deland-Weldon Eagles by a score of 43-33 on Saturday Night. The Maroons were led by Junior Colten Reeves with 11 points. Junior Camryn Ward also chipped in with 9 points. The Deland-Weldon Eagles was led by Dee Woods with 9 points. With the win the Maroons improve to 2-2 in the Mt.Pulaski Turkey Tournament. Tune in Tuesday as the Clinton Maroons take on Blue Ridge. You can hear the game live on The Big 1520 AM/92.3 FM WHOW and online at dewittdailynews.com.

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Gov. proclaims Small Business Saturday in Illinois

Gov. Pat Quinn is encouraging shoppers to support Illinois' more than 1.1 million small businesses.

In a press release, the governor called small businesses "the backbone of the state's economy" and proclaimed it "Small Business Saturday."

According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, there are about 28 million small businesses nationwide. Those businesses have created 65% of the new jobs over the past two decades.

The 3/50 Project, a small business advocacy group, says for every $100 spent in independent, locally-owned stores, $68 is returned to the local community.

The day falls between 2 of the busiest shopping days of the year - the day after Thanksgiving, known as Black Friday, and Cyber Monday, when workers return to work and use their computers to snag deals online.

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Postal Service job fairs set for next week

The U.S. Postal Service has scheduled job fairs in central Illinois next week to recruit applicants for jobs in Champaign and other parts of Illinois and Missouri.

The fairs will be 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Nov. 27 at the Danville Post Office and 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Nov. 28 at the Eagle Station in Bloomington.

The Gateway District of the postal service is recruiting for positions at the Champaign Processing and Distribution Facility. Positions available include postal support employees and casual mail handlers.

Officials will also seek applicants for other positions across central and southern Illinois and northeastern Missouri. Those posts include postmaster relief employees, rural carrier associates, and transitional employees.

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Son of former Ill.governor arrested for DUI

The son of former Illinois Gov. George Ryan has been arrested for driving under the influence.

George Ryan, Jr., of St. Anne, was arrested early Thursday morning.

According to a police report, the 48-year-old was sleeping in the driver's seat of his pick-up truck.

The truck was parked outside a White Castle restaurant in Bradley, which is located south of Chicago. The vehicle was running.

Ryan failed to complete several sobriety tests and refused chemical testing.

He was taken to the local jail, where he posted bail and was released later Thursday.

Ryan could not be reached for comment Friday. He did not immediately return a telephone message left at his office.

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Day-Lewis Prepped in State Capitol for Film Role

Leaving nothing to chance, Daniel Day-Lewis' prep for his movie role as Abraham Lincoln included the 2-time Academy Award winner secretly spending time in the 16th U.S. president's former Illinois turf.

Day-Lewis toured Lincoln sites in Springfield two years ago, at times standing in the Old State Capitol's chamber and asking to be left alone for 10 minutes.

Dave Blanchette with the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum remembers the star of the new Steven Spielberg film "Lincoln" as studious and reverential. Blanchette says the actor even asked to touch letters Lincoln wrote to his generals. Those writings are in the museum's archives.

Day-Lewis showed up in Springfield in November 2010 intent on being incognito, wearing sunglasses and a fedora.

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Task Force Will Try to Improve EMS

A STATE TASK FORCE IS MAKING RECOMMENDATIONS FOR IMPROVING EMERGENCY HEALTH SERVICES IN RURAL AREAS.

TASK FORCE MEMBER LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR SHEILA SIMON SAYS ONE MAJOR IMPROVEMENT THE GROUP WOULD LIKE TO SEE IS INCREASING THE AVAILABILITY OF ONLINE TRAINING FOR E-M-T’S AND PARAMEDICS. CURRENTLY…ONLY ABOUT 25 PERCENT OF THEIR REQUIRED CONTINUING EDUCATION CAN BE COMPLETED OVER THE INTERNET.

[audio:ems.mp3][/audio]

SOME CHANGES HAVE ALREADY BEEN IMPLEMENTED…AND SIMON SAYS THEY WILL DISCUSS HOW TO PUT THE REST OF THE GROUP’S RECOMMENDATIONS INTO ACTION.

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WHOW's Jared White Honored For Excellence In Media Award.

The Illinois Corn Growers Association's 2012 Excellence in Media Award was given to Jared White, WHOW, at the ICGA Annual Meeting today at the DoubleTree Hotel. The award is given each year to a member of the media who promotes Illinois agriculture and specifically, Illinois corn and corn farmers, thru their media coverage.

In a statement released earlier this week, President of the Association, Jeff Scates said "We are proud of our ag media throughout the state and the job they do to cover agriculture in a positive and informative way. Specifically, we are grateful to Jared White for his relevant information about agriculture and we hope this award conveys our gratitude to him for his hard work and dedication to the industry."

White serves as the local farm broadcaster for 3 of the Miller Media Group radio stations: WHOW Clinton, WTIM Taylorville, and WRJM Charleston. White was promoted to the position in May 2011.

White also serves as program director at WHOW-WEZC in Clinton. White and his family reside in Clinton. width=

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FRIDAY'S SCOREBOARD

NBA
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Atlanta Hawks 101, Charlotte Bobcats 91
Orlando Magic 108, Cleveland Cavaliers 104
Brooklyn Nets 86, Los Angeles Clippers 76
Boston Celtics 108, Oklahoma City Thunder 100
Detroit Pistons 91, Toronto Raptors 90
Memphis Grizzlies 106, Los Angeles Lakers 98
Houston Rockets 131, New York Knicks 103
San Antonio Spurs 104, Indiana Pacers 97
Denver Nuggets 102, Golden State Warriors 91
Utah Jazz 104, Sacramento Kings 102
Phoenix Suns 111, New Orleans Hornets 108 (OT)
Portland Trail Blazers 103, Minnesota Timberwolves 95

NCAA Top-25 Football (BCS Standings)
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#7 LSU Tigers 20, Arkansas Razorbacks 13
#14 Nebraska Cornhuskers 13, Iowa Hawkeyes 7
#23 Kent State Golden Flashes 28, Ohio Bobcats 6
Arizona State Sun Devils 41, #24 Arizona Wildcats 34
Washington State Cougars 31, #25 Washington Huskies 28 (OT)

NCAA Top-25 Basketball ("USA Today" Rankings)
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#2 Louisville Cardinals 84, #13 Missouri Tigers 61
#3 Ohio State Buckeyes 91, UMKC Kangaroos 45
#4 Michigan Wolverines 71, Kansas State Wildcats 57 (at New York, NY)
#5 Duke Blue Devils 67, VCU Rams 58 (at The Bahamas)
#7 Kentucky Wildcats 104, LIU-Brooklyn Blackbirds 75 (at Brooklyn, NY)
#8 Florida Gators 79, UCF Knights 66
#12 Creighton Bluejays 84, #24 Wisconsin Badgers 74 (at Las Vegas, NV)
#15 North Carolina State Wolfpack 82, UNC-Asheville Bulldogs 80
Minnesota Golden Gophers 84, #17 Memphis Tigers 75
#19 Michigan State Spartans 70, Oakland Golden Grizzlies 52
#16 Gonzaga Bulldogs 72, Oklahoma Sooners 47 (at Orlando, FL)
Oregon Ducks 83, #18 UNLV Rebels 79
#20 Cincinnati Bearcats 78, Iowa State Cyclones 70

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Bears Host Vikings On Sunday

The Chicago Bears welcome the Minnesota Vikings to Soldier Field on Sunday. Chicago has dropped its last two games to fall to 7-and-3. The Bears and Vikings meet twice in the next three weeks. Chicago is tied for first place in the NFC North with the Green Bay Packers, and Minnesota trails by one game at 6-and-4.

 

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Bulls In Action On Saturday

The Chicago Bulls try to move back to .500 on Saturday when they finish off a three-game road trip against the Milwaukee Bucks.  Chicago is currently 5-and-6 and in the midst of a three-game losing streak.  The Bucks are in first place in the Central Division at 6-and-4.  

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Allen nets 30, Illinois State beats UAB 77-65

Bryant Allen scored 30 points on 9 of 15 shooting which included six made 3-pointers and the Illinois State defense forced 27 turnovers to stay perfect on the season and prevail 77-65 over UAB on Friday night.

Two others were in double figures for Illinois State (5-0) with Tyler Brown adding 15 points and six rebounds. Jackie Carmichael had 11 points, five rebounds and five blocked shots. Kaza Keane had nine points, four rebounds, four assists and three steals.

Allen added six steals to his game-high point total for the Redbirds.

Jordan Swing recorded a double-double for UAB (3-2) with 18 points and 11 rebounds. Rod Rucker was 7 of 11 from the field for 14 points and had three rebounds and two assists. Robert Williams had seven points and nine rebounds for the Blazers.

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EIU, Ill. State ready for football playoffs

Illinois' disappointing season may have college football fans in central Illinois ready to move on to basketball but 2 of the state's smaller universities will are heading into the post season.

Eastern Illinois will take on South Dakota State (8-3) Saturday in the first round of the Football Championship Subdivision playoffs. The Panthers (7-4) will go on the road in their first playoff appearance since 2009.

And on Dec. 1, Illinois State (8-3) will travel to Appalachian State for the second round of the FCS playoffs. The Redbirds earned a first-round bye before facing the Mountaineers (8-3). Illinois State is making its first playoff appearance since 2006.

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Know Signs of Alzhiemer's

More than five million Americans suffer from Alzheimer’s disease, the most common form of dementia. It is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States.

Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive, degenerative disease of the brain that results in impaired memory and thinking. Ronald Zec, associate professor of neurology and psychiatry at SIU School of Medicine in Springfield, says it usually starts with abnormal memory loss.

[audio:siualz.mp3][/audio]

Zec, who also is with SIU’s Center for Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Disorders, says the biggest risk factors for Alzheimer’s disease are age and family history. Most of the people who are diagnosed with the disease are over age 65. Although there is no cure, some behavioral and environmental treatments and medications can slow its progression. He describes some of the medications used in treating the disease.

[audio:siualz2.mp3][/audio]

If someone you know is suffering from serious memory problems and needs help, contact your family physician or call the Alzheimer’s Center at SIU School of Medicine in Springfield at 1-800-342-5748.

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Local Representative Calls Allowing Illegal Immigrants to Obtain Legal License

At a Chicago press conference Tuesday, Governor Pat Quinn and State Senate President John Cullerton said they would seek to fast-track a bill that would give licenses to as many as 250,000 illegal immigrants who are currently driving in the state of Illinois but who haven’t passed a driving test or, in many cases, have no insurance.

State Representative Bill Mitchell is against the idea, calling it an unwise policy. He says it is amazing how quickly things change in Springfield, where the bill was defeated just 2 years ago.

[audio:112012MitchellIllegallicense.MP3][/audio]

The two Democrats were joined by Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and a spokesperson for House Speaker Michael Madigan. Madigan, who is currently traveling overseas, has supported the legislation in the past and is expected to do so when the measure comes up during the lame-duck session of the Illinois General Assembly the first week of the new year.

The issue also has political implications. Latino voters were credited with helping Democrats win big on Election Day.

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Clinton Maroons fall short to Decatur Christian

The Clinton Maroons fell to the Decatur Christian Warriors by a score of 48-39 on Friday Night. The Maroons were led by Senior Greg Osgood with a total of 8 points. Junior Camryn Ward also chipped in with 7 points. The Decatur Christian Warriors was led by Michael Houran with 29 points. With the loss the Maroons fall to. Tune in tomorrow as the Maroons take on Deland Weldon. You can hear the game live on Clinton The Big 1520 AM/92.3 FM and online at dewittdailynews.com

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Local Unemployment Figures for October

Unemployment in several Illinois County went down in October. Local unemployment figures were released Wednesday afternoon.

DeWitt County saw unemployment drop , down to 7.5% 7.6%.

Piatt County has one of the areas lowest unemployment numbers going from 6.9% to 6.6%.

Macon County's unemployment also dropped over a percent from August to September, but still remains above 10-percent, from 10.2% to 10.1%.

Logan County saw unemployment go from 7.8% to 7.7%.

Unemployment in McLean County dropped, going from 6.7% to 6.6%.

In Champaign County, unemployment also went down to 7.7%.

Unemployment in Sangamon County went from 7.3% to 7.1%.

Unemployment in Christian County went from 9.3% to 9.0%.

Shelby County's unemployment dropped ,going from 8.6% to 8.4%

Livingston County had unemployment drop from 7.7% to 7.3%.

Adams County had the areas' lowest unemployment at 5.9%.

The biggest change in unemployment occurred in Putnam County, where unemployment rose over a percentage point, going from 8.9% to 10.0%.

The highest unemployment rate was at 11.6% in Alexander County.

Brown County once again had the state's lowest unemployment rate at 4.5%.

Overall, Illinois unemployment went up in October from 8.1% to 8.4%.

The United States, overall, saw unemployment go down from 7.6% to 7.5%

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Shoppers Reminded To Remember Personal Safety During Holiday Season

 width=The holiday season is one of the busiest times of year, it's also a time of year when people should be aware of their own safety.

Black Friday is not only a busy day for shoppers, but for thieves as well. Clinton Police Chief Mike Reidy says there are many ways shoppers can prevent themselves from being victims. One place Chief Reidy says to be especially careful are ATM Machines. He says that there have been some cases where fake ATMs can take advantage of holiday shoppers.

[audio:112312holidaysafety1.mp3] [/audio]

Chief Reidy says it's important to go out during daylight hours as much as possible. He also says while malls and stores hire extra security this time of year, it's always important to be prepared with items such as your vehicles and personal belongings. He gives several tips to think about this holiday season.

[audio:112312holidaysafety2.mp3] [/audio]

Chief Reidy also gives tips about serving those large holiday family meals. He says it's important to not have flammable material around the stove and to be very careful around hot liquids and cooking tools.

[audio:112312holidaysafety3.mp3] [/audio]

Chief Reidy says it's important that people be as cautious as they can in order to have an enjoyable holiday season.

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THURSDAY'S SCOREBOARD

NFL
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Houston Texans 34, Detroit Lions 31 (OT)
Washington Redskins 38, Dallas Cowboys 31
New England Patriots 49, New York Jets 19

NCAA Football (BCS Standings)
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TCU Horned Frogs 20, #16 Texas Longhorns 13

NBA
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No Games Scheduled

NCAA Top-25 Basketball ("USA Today" Rankings)
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#2 Louisville Cardinals 51, Northern Iowa Panthers 46 (at Bahamas)
#5 Duke Blue Devils 89, Minnesota Golden Gophers 71 (at Bahamas)
#14 Missouri Tigers 78, Stanford Cardinal 70 (at Bahamas)
#16 Gonzaga Bulldogs 57, Clemson Tigers 49 (at Orlando, FL)
VCU Rams 78, #17 Memphis Tigers 65 (at Bahamas)

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Bulls In Action On Saturday

The Chicago Bulls try to move back to .500 on Saturday when they finish off a three-game road trip against the Milwaukee Bucks.  Chicago is currently 5-and-6 and in the midst of a three-game losing streak.  The Bucks are in first place in the Central Division at 6-and-4.  

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Bears Host Vikings On Sunday

The Chicago Bears welcome the Minnesota Vikings to Soldier Field on Sunday.  Chicago has dropped its last two games to fall to 7-and-3.  The Bears and Vikings meet twice in the next three weeks.  Chicago is tied for first place in the NFC North with the Green Bay Packers, and Minnesota trails by one game at 6-and-4.  

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Northwestern looks to secure quality bowl

In line for a quality bowl, Northwestern also realizes it can't look too far ahead.

The Wildcats play Illinois on Saturday, and their recent history against their in-state rival is not good. That explains why they're just a little apprehensive about Saturday's game, no matter how poor the Illini are playing.

Coach Pat Fitzgerald says there's "no question this is a huge rivalry," and his team has come up short the past two years.

Northwestern (8-3, 4-3 Big Ten) appears to be in a good spot after beating Michigan State 23-20 and shaking off a brutal overtime loss at Michigan. That's something the Illini (2-9, 0-7) can't say. The free fall that began after a 6-0 start under Ron Zook last season still is going strong under new coach Tim Beckman.

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No. 24 Northern Illinois aiming for school record

Northern Illinois' ticket to the Mid-American Conference title game already has already been punched.

The 24th-ranked Huskies still aren't planning to take Friday's regular-season finale easy.

Northern Illinois (10-1, 7-0 MAC) can set a new school record with its 11th straight win and tie the school's single-season victory total by beating Eastern Michigan (2-9, 1-6) on the road.

Coach Dave Doeren has taken the Huskies to the MAC championship game in each of his two seasons. He says his team has even greater goals.

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IHSA Friday Preview

The IHSA Football State Finals are this weekend. The Okaw Valley Conference has sent two teams to State and there are a couple other local teams in play for a championship.

In Class 1A, 12-1 Maroa-Forsyth will take on 13-0 Stockton today at 10 am

In Class 3A, 12-1 Tolono Unity will take on Aurora Christian this afternoon at 4 pm.

In Class 4A, 12-1 Rochester will take on Rock Island Alleman tonight at 7 pm.

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110 MPH Service Starts on Chicago-St. Louis Route

After a test phase, Amtrak is whisking rail passengers at a new top speed of 110 mph over a short section of its route between Chicago and St. Louis.

Gov. Pat Quinn announced the step forward for the Midwest's high-speed rail program on Thursday.

The higher speed over a 15-mile segment between Dwight and Pontiac comes in time for Thanksgiving and the start to the busy holiday travel period.

Quinn praised what he called a "next generation rail system" that will give passengers a safer, more reliable way to travel across the state.

The current top speed is 79 mph.

After more upgrades, transportation officials hope by 2015 to have the higher speed in place over 75% of the route, cutting the journey time by more than an hour.

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Illinois Postcard Mailed During WWII Arrives at NY home

A postcard mailed nearly 70 years ago has finally arrived at the former upstate New York home of the couple who sent it.

The postcard was sent July 4, 1943, from Rockford, Ill., to sisters Pauline and Theresa Leisenring in Elmira (el-MY'-ruh).

Their brother, George Leisenring, was stationed at Rockford's Medical Center Barracks at Camp Grant, an Army post during World War II. Their parents were visiting him when they mailed the postcard home.

The postcard reads in part, "Dear Pauline and Theresa, We arrived safe, had a good trip, but we were good and tired."

The postcard arrived last week at the family's former home, where a different family now lives.

A postal official says the postcard may have been found by someone outside the postal service and placed in the mail.

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Illinois Man Pleads Fraudulent eBay Sales

A northwestern Illinois man has pleaded guilty to taking part in a scheme to purchase household goods online using stolen credit card information and then sell the items to buyers through his eBay account.

Anthony DeFilippo of Hanover admitted that from 2009 to 2011 he devised and took part in the fraud, which involved the sale of items such as vacuum cleaners and sewing machines.

The U.S. Attorney's Office for the northern district of Illinois announced Friday that the 56-year-old man pleaded guilty to wire fraud charges, which carry a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Federal prosecutors say DeFilippo kept some of the proceeds from the eBay sales and sent some of the money to people in Ukraine and other countries.

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Black Friday Sting Operation Set For Illinois

SECRETARY OF STATE JESSE WHITE’S OFFICE IS ANNOUNCING A BLACK FRIDAY DISABILITY PARKING STING. 

SECRETARY OF STATE POLICE DEPUTY CHIEF PETE PIAZZA SAYS OFFICERS WILL BE ON THE LOOKOUT FOR THOSE ILLEGALLY PARKED IN HANDICAPPED SPOTS. VIOLATORS WILL BE TICKETED…AND FACE HUNDREDS OF DOLLARS IN FINES.

[audio:sting2.mp3] [/audio]

THE STING WILL BE HELD ON FRIDAY…AND THROUGHOUT THE HOLIDAY SEASON IN LOCATIONS INCLUDING CHICAGO, SCHAUMBURG, SPRINGFIELD, ROCKFORD, FAIRVIEW HEIGHTS, CARBONDALE AND CHAMPAIGN.

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Richland Community College Online Learning Great Alternative For Busy Lifestyle

Richland Community College is expanding its online learning services.

The Decatur based community college has made its online courses a flat rate of $145 a credit hour for anyone in the United States. Richland's Director of Online Learning Kona Jones says that this will help make the classes available for more people.

[audio:112312RCC1.mp3] [/audio]

During the current semester and again in the spring semester, there are over 60 classes available onlines. Jones says people who only have basic computer skills should not worry about the classes being too technologically advanced since all students have to go through an online orientation.

[audio:112312RCC2.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Jones notes online learning is not for everyone though. She explains students who enjoy reading and working independently may do better than students who benefit from hearing lectures and interacting with a professor.

[audio:112312RCC3.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Currently the system Richland is using does not do well with mobile technology, however, this summer, the school will be implementing a new learning management system that Jones says is going to be very user friendly.

[audio:112312RCC4.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Jones adds the only requirement needed for most of the classes is a high school diploma or GED.
For more information, contact Richland's Online Learning Services at 217-875-7211 extension 376 or email ochelp@richland.edu.

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DeWitt County Angel Tree Helps Less Fortunate During Holidays

 width=Now that the holiday shopping season is in full swing, one local organization is hoping you will take time this holiday to help the less fortunate of DeWitt County.

Once again this year, the Angel Tree Program of DeWitt County is aiming to provide Christmas presents for the youth of the community who otherwise may not be fortunate enough to receive gifts this Christmas. Sue Calvert is the Director of the Angel Tree program. She explains that there is still time to put qualifying families on Angel Tree.

[audio:112312angeltree1.mp3] [/audio]

Calvert explains that the collection day will be Monday December 3rd. She also explains the process of how they will be organized and distributed.

[audio:112312angeltree2.mp3] [/audio]

Calvert says that Angel Tree is always in need of volunteers. If individuals or families would like to volunteer, it's not a large commitment. She also adds that ,because of the economy, some families might not be able to buy every item on a child's list. She explains how Angel Tree takes precautions to make sure that each child recieves their needed items.

[audio:112312angeltree3.mp3] [/audio]

There is still time to adopt a child for the Angel Tree program this year. Gifts must be submitted by December the 3rd, and they will be distributed December 7. Calvert says there are several churches and businesses that Christmas lists can be obtained from. The churches include St. Patrick's in Wapella, Clinton Christian Church, St. John's Catholic, First United Methodist Church, and the Clinton Presbyterian Church. The businesses include the State Bank of Lincoln in Clinton, Farmer City State Bank, and First National Bank.

Calvert says you can take those donations to the First National Bank for Clinton residents, and the Farmer City State Bank is handling the Farmer City donations.

For more information you can contact Sue Calvert at suecalvert13@gmail.com or you can visit them on Facebook at DeWitt County Samaritan Room/Angel Tree.

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Coast Guard Delivering Christmas Trees to Chicago

The U.S. Coast Guard has loaded 1,300 Christmas trees aboard an ice cutter for delivery down Lake Michigan to Chicago.

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the sinking of a ship called the Rouse Simmons, known as the original Christmas tree ship. In 2000, the Coast Guard began transporting Christmas trees to Chicago for needy families while tending to buoys and other navigation marks on Lake Michigan.

This year's load will make it to Chicago after Thanksgiving. The 100 trees are from Two Rivers, Wis. The Coast Guard will drop a wreath at the site of the 1912 wreck to remember the Rouse Simmons.

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Delta Agency Says Small Businesses Create Most Jobs

A study conducted for the Delta Regional Authority says that 90% of the new jobs created in the region over the past 20 years were at small businesses.

The report "Jobs and Small Businesses" classified small businesses as those with nine employees or fewer. The study also noted that manufacturing jobs suffered a steep decline.

According to the report, local small businesses created 58,000 new jobs since 1992 while non-resident and non-commercial business establishments eliminated nearly 368,000 jobs.

The study was conducted by James Stapleton at the Douglas C. Greene Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Southeast Missouri State University.

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Illinois Cemetery Project Touches on Civil War History


Restoration work at a northern Illinois cemetery is shedding light on the area's links to the Civil War.

Rockton Township has been cleaning and restoring headstones for the past three years in the oldest part of the cemetery, which dates to the 1800s.

The work is now focusing on the grave markers of Civil War veterans.

The most prominent of them is Elon Farnsworth, a 25-year-old Union brigadier general who became something of a celebrity after his death during the final day of the battle of Gettysburg.

Farnsworth was ordered to charge against a Confederate stronghold of little strategic importance. Though he protested it was suicide, historians say Farnsworth put on a remarkable display of courage and horsemanship during the failed attack.

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Governor Urges Illinoians To Help Food Banks

Gov. Pat Quinn is reminding state residents to support food banks around Illinois during the holiday season and throughout the year.

In a news release, Quinn's office says the governor visited the Greater Chicago Food Depository the day before Thanksgiving to help volunteers prepare holiday meals.

Quinn's office says there are eight food banks around the state and, according to Feeding Illinois, there are more than 1.9 million people in the state who don't have access to nutritious food. The Greater Food Depository alone provides food for more than 142,000 people every week - nearly 37% of whom are children.

Quinn is urging people to volunteer at food banks in their communities and donate to them.

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DeWitt County Museum's Holiday Season Is In Full Swing

The Holiday Season is now in full swing and the festivities at the DeWitt County Museum are under way.
 
The Candlelight Tour Season at the CH Moore Homestead begins tomorrow. This popular event draws many people to the Homestead each year. According to the resident manager at the Homestead, Larry Buss, these tours are their second most popular event right after the Apple & Pork Festival. He says that visitors can come out and get their Christmas shopping done with many seasonal items in the gift shop and take one of the tours. All of the rooms at the homestead are decorated to coincide with a specific theme.
 
[audio:112212candlelight1.mp3] [/audio]
 
Buss says that the majority of the rooms are decorated by ladies from the Museum's board but other volunteers participate as well. He adds that while the house is impressive during the daytime, it is even more impressive at night during the Christmas season. There will also be some great entertainment planned for this year as well.
 
[audio:112212candlelight2.mp3] [/audio]
 
The kick-off will be tomorrow and Buss says that they try to provide varieties of entertainment for each year's opener. He adds the kick-off day is a usually a highly attended day at the Museum.
 
[audio:112212candlelight3.mp3] [/audio]
 
The offical kickoff date is tomorrow, November 23rd at 5 pm. The house will be open for each Friday night after that from 5-8pm until December 28th. It is an open house format and there are no tickets needed in advance. For more information, you can go to chmoorehomstead.org or call Larry Buss at 935-6066.

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WEDNESDAY'S SCOREBOARD

NBA
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Orlando Magic 90, Detroit Pistons 74
Cleveland Cavaliers 92, Philadelphia 76ers 83
Indiana Pacers 115, New Orleans Hornets 107 (OT)
Charlotte Bobcats 98, Toronto Raptors 97
Oklahoma City Thunder 117, Los Angeles Clippers 111 (OT)
Miami Heat 113, Milwaukee Bucks 106 (OT)
San Antonio Spurs 112, Boston Celtics 100
Atlanta Hawks 101, Washington Wizards 100 (OT)
Houston Rockets 93, Chicago Bulls 89
Denver Nuggets 101, Minnesota Timberwolves 94
Dallas Mavericks 114, New York Knicks 111
Phoenix Suns 114, Portland Trail Blazers 87
Sacramento Kings 113, Los Angeles Lakers 97
Golden State Warriors 102, Brooklyn Nets 93

NCAA Top-25 Basketball  ("USA Today" Rankings)
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#4 Michigan Wolverines 67, Pittsburgh Panthers 62  (at New York, NY)
#6 Syracuse Orange 73, Princeton Tigers 53
#8 Kentucky Wildcats 81, Morehead State Eagles 70  (at Brooklyn, NY)
#9 North Carolina Tar Heels 112, Chaminade 70  (at Maui, HI)
#25 San Diego State Aztecs 79, Arkansas-Pine Bluff Golden Lions 43

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Report: Bears Jeffry To Have Knee Scoped

Several outlets are reporting Chicago Bears receiver Alshon Jeffery will undergo arthroscopic surgery on his right knee.

The Chicago Tribune, citing sources, was first to report he will have the procedure on Wednesday. ESPNChicago.com reports he could return in two weeks, while a source tells the Chicago Sun-Times he could be out four to six weeks.

The Bears would not confirm the reports.

Jeffery was injured in Monday's loss at San Francisco and left in the second half. It was the second injury for the rookie, who had missed the previous four games with a broken right hand.

A second-round draft pick, Jeffery has 16 catches for 199 yards and two touchdowns.

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Harden scores 28 in Rockets' win over Bulls

 James Harden scored 28 points, Patrick Patterson added 20 and the Houston Rockets snapped a 3-game losing streak with a 93-89 victory over the Chicago Bulls on Wednesday night.

Toney Douglas swished a 3-pointer and sank two free throws in the final 1:11 as Houston won for the 33rd consecutive time when holding its opponent below 90 points, the NBA's longest current streak.

Nate Robinson scored 21 off the bench, Luol Deng added 19 and Carlos Boozer had 13 points and 15 rebounds for the Bulls, who've lost three in a row for the first time in Tom Thibodeau's three seasons as coach.

Houston point guard Jeremy Lin was on the bench for the final five minutes. Lin went 2 for 9 from the field and scored only four points.

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EIUs Erik Lora Named Ohio Valley Player of Year

Eastern Illinois receiver Erik Lora has been named the Ohio Valley Conference's offensive player of the year, while his coach Dino Babers has been voted the league's coach of the year.

The league released the awards Tuesday along with the All-OVC team.

Lora is the third Eastern Illinois player tabbed offensive player of the year along with Tony Romo (2000-02) and running back Vincent Webb. Lora led the nation with 11.27 catches and 139.18 yards per game and with 1,531 yards receiving.

Babers replaced Bob Spoo, and he led a team that went 2-9 and was last in the OVC to the league title.

Linebacker Blake Peiffer of Southeast Missouri State was named defensive player of the year. His teammate, quarterback Scott Lathrop, was freshman of the year.

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Rochester beats Eastern Illinois 59-56

- Stavros Schizas and Dramell Hogan scored 17 points each and Rochester (Mich.) defeated Eastern Illinois 59-56 on Wednesday afternoon.

Rochester is an NAIA school.

Schizas was 3 of 4 from 3-point range and had four rebounds. Hogan was 6 of 12 from the field and grabbed five rebounds. Drew Maynard posted a double-double, with 15 points and 11 rebounds.

Rochester led 29-25 at halftime.

Rochester shot 44% from the field for the game, while the Panthers shot just 37%.

Sherman Blanford had 11 points and nine rebounds for the Panthers (2-4). Morris Woods also had 11 points. Josh Piper added 10.

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Illinois beats Butler 78-61 to win Maui tourney

 Brandon Paul scored 20 points to lead Illinois to the Maui Invitational title on Wednesday night, beating Butler in a 78-61 blowout that marked its third straight double-digit win.

The Illini (6-0) held off several attempts by Butler to string points together in the second half. Paul was 1 of 4 players in double figures, along with Tracy Abrams with 17 points and Tyler Griffey and D.J. Richardson with 14 each.

Illinois shot 48% as Butler relied almost exclusively on point guard Rotnei Clarke to score. Clarke had 27 points and took nearly one-third his team's shots.

With the win, Illinois topped a Maui field that included No. 9 North Carolina and Marquette, which both lost early-round games. Paul was tournament MVP.

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WWII Ordnance Denotated in East-Central Illinois

The owner of an auction house in east central Illinois found a big surprise while unpacking the belongings of a recently deceased Longview man: a box filled with World War II-era explosives.

Jim Clingan says that the items included a mortar with Japanese writing on it, several hand grenades and a belt of old large bullets. He says the former owner of the box had left behind a lot of tools and he'd expected to find a power saw in the box.

Clingan called the sheriff's office, and the local bomb squad took the items from the auction house in St. Joseph and detonated them Tuesday.

Sheriff's Lt. Greg Mills says 1 of the bomb squad technicians told him at least 1 of the grenades was live.

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Second Teller Gets Probation In Bank Theft

The second of 2 former tellers who admitted stealing thousands of dollars from their bank has been sentenced to probation and ordered to repay the stolen money.

 29-year-old Jamie Gajewski pleaded guilty Tuesday in Madison County to a felony theft count and was sentenced to three years of probation.

She also must repay the nearly $90,000 authorities say she stole from First National Bank of Staunton between January 2011 and January 2012.

Another ex-teller, 51-year-old Lori Surgant, pleaded guilty in July to a theft charge. She's been sentenced to probation and ordered to repay more than $7,000.

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Officials Discuss Family Health At Thanksgiving

Officials are encouraging families to use Thanksgiving gatherings to discuss family health histories.

Dr. LaMar Hasbrouck is director of the Illinois Department of Public Health. He says heart disease, cancer, diabetes, sickle cell anemia and other common diseases can run in families.

Discussing health problems with blood relatives can help keep family members alert for signs of problems and stay healthy.

The most important relatives to consult are parents, brothers, sisters and children. Next are grandparents, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews and others.

Questions should include whether the family member has a chronic disease such as high blood pressure or suffered other problems such as cancer or stroke. Questions about difficult pregnancies and current medications also shed light.

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Secretary of State's Office Announces Black Friday Disabled Parking Sting

SECRETARY OF STATE JESSE WHITE’S OFFICE IS ANNOUNCING A BLACK FRIDAY DISABILITY PARKING STING.

SECRETARY OF STATE POLICE WILL BE AT MALLS IN SEVERAL COMMUNITIES INCLUDE: SCHAUMBURG, CHICAGO, CARBONDALE, CHAMPAIGN, PEORIA, FAIRVIEW HEIGHTS, ROCKFORD AND SPRINGFIELD. WHITE SAYS THEY WILL BE LOOKING FOR DRIVERS ILLEGALLY PARKED IN A HANDICAP SPOT.

[audio:sting1.mp3] [/audio]

LAST YEAR SECRETARY OF STATE POLICE ISSUED 187 TICKETS ON BLACK FRIDAY. THE STING WILL RUN THROUGH THE HOLIDAY SEASON.

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Clinton Maroons defeat the Greenville Bulldogs

The Clinton Maroons defeated the Greenville Bulldogs  by a score of 46-27 on Wednesday night.  The Clinton Maroons were led by your IGA player of the game Camryn Ward with 14 points, Colton Reeves' with 10 points and Greg Osgood  also chipped in with 8 points .

The Greenville Bulldogs were led by Austin Weizhuner with 11 points.

With the win the Maroons improve to a 1-1 in the season.

Tune in next Friday as the Maroons take on Decatur Christian. You can hear the game live on The Big AM/92.3 FM WHOW and online at dewittdailynews.com

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Illinois Hires 135 New Correctional Officers

The Illinois Department of Corrections has hired 135 new correctional officers after the cadets completed six weeks of training.

Department spokeswoman Stacey Solano says the new officers will replace some of the 206 employees who've left the job during the current fiscal year.

Solano says the number of guards leaving is down from the same point last year, when 343 had left.

As of last week, Illinois had 6,669 guards, which is down 30 from the total at the same time last year.

The latest class of cadets began training at the Corrections Department's headquarters in Springfield on Oct. 1. In the end, 15 women and 120 men finished the training. Their base salary is just more than $42,000 per year.

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Illinois Draws $346-Thousand In October Video Gambling Revenue

A new report shows that Illinois' fledgling video gambling industry brought in more than $346,000 in revenue for the state in October.

The Illinois Gaming Board's monthly report shows that the state's October take came from nearly $18 million in wagers at 714 machines across Illinois. Local governments where the gambling is offered got nearly $70,000.

Lawmakers approved video gambling in 2009 to help fund a $31 billion construction program to fix schools, roads, bridges and other projects, but it didn't get under way until this year.

When it was approved, officials estimated that such gambling would raise about $375 million a year for the state.

Gambling officials have estimated that up to 75,000 machines could be installed statewide within a year.

Updated projections haven't been released.

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Illinois Task Force Looked At Rural Emergency Services

An Illinois House task force has made recommendations for improving emergency medical services in rural areas of the state.

Lt. Gov. Sheila Simon, Republican state Rep. Don Moffitt of Gilson and Democratic state Rep. Lisa Dugan of Bradley announced the recommendations on Tuesday in Springfield. The recommendations come after 17 hearings of the Illinois House's Emergency Medical Services Task Force.

The task force recommended allowing emergency medical providers to complete more training online. It also recommended simplifying ambulance licensing.

Simon says the recommendations are important because residents in some areas of rural Illinois have to travel up to 30 miles or more to reach appropriate hospitals.

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Preliminary Magnitude 3.6-Magnitude Earthquake Hits Southern Illinois

Authorities say a preliminary magnitude-3.6 earthquake was reported in southern Illinois.

The U.S. Geological Survey said Tuesday the earthquake's epicenter was 4 miles north of Bellmont in Wabash County. Illinois Emergency Management Agency spokeswoman Patti Thompson said the state had no reports of any damage.

Officials with the USGS say the earthquake was about 38 miles north-northwest of Evansville, Ind., and 127 miles east of St. Louis, Mo. Officials say the earthquake happened about 5:28 p.m.

The area is near the New Madrid seismic zone. The largest earthquake reported in the state was a magnitude 5.4 in southern Illinois in 1968.

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Illinois Terminates Contract With AFSCME

The Quinn administration has terminated the contract between the state of Illinois and its largest public employee union.

Assistant Budget Director Abdon Pallasch (AB'-dun PAL--lish) said Tuesday that after 11 months of bargaining, state officials informed leaders of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees there will be no additional extensions of a contract covering 40,000 workers that expired in June.

Pallasch says after extending the contract three times, union negotiators haven't made proposals dealing with retirement health care and continues to seek a pay raise despite the state's troubled finances.

Calling the administration's action unprecedented, AFSCME executive director Henry Bayer says the action will make reaching a contract more difficult.

Both sides agree the action will have no immediate effect because the contract terms remain in effect.

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Economy Means Sacrifice For Thanksgiving Travelers

Still feeling the effects of the sluggish economic recovery, many Americans setting out on the annual Thanksgiving migration had to sacrifice summer vacations, rely on relatives for airfare or scour the Web for travel deals to ensure they made it home.

And it's not just tight finances making travel tough. Airlines struggling to save on jet fuel have cut the number of flights, leading to a jump in airfares. Those hitting the roads face high gas prices and rising tolls.

Many travelers say they're accepting that sacrifices for holiday journeys have become the norm.

For locomotive engineer Chris Zukowski that meant staying behind while his wife and three children flew from Chicago to see family in New Jersey. He says after several years he has "become immune" to such sacrifices.

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Deer Hunters In Illinois Take More Deer This Season

The Illinois Department of Natural Resources says deer hunters around Illinois killed more than 72,000 deer during last weekend's opening of the 2012 firearm season. That's an increase of more than 5,000 from a year earlier.

The department said Tuesday that the highest totals during the first three days were in Pike, Fulton, Adams Jo Daviess and Randolph counties. Hunters in some areas had feared numbers would be reduced because of a drought-driven outbreak of Epizootic Hemorrhagic Disease. But the agency said conditions were very good.

The department says about 60% of the deer taken so far are bucks.

The first weekend of the season started last Friday and ended Sunday. It will resume Nov. 29 and end Dec. 2. More than 334,000 firearm deer permits have been issued.

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Lincoln Mayor Keith Snyder Announces Re-Election Bid

Lincoln Mayor Keith Snyder has announced he will be running for re-election in 2013.

 width=The incumbent Republican is in the midst of his first term as the Mayor of Lincoln. Mayor Snyder says he has been honored to serve the people of Lincoln that past almost four years, and would enjoy serving another term. He feels there are a lot of unfinished items he would like to see through.

[audio:112112snyderreelect1.mp3] [/audio]

The Mayor came into office hoping to accomplish goals in three major categories, those being economic development, community pride, and looking to the future. Mayor Snyder feels he has done things to accomplish all those, he hopes to continue some of the unfinished work, including the revitalizing the downtown area of Lincoln.

[audio:112112snyderreelect2.mp3] [/audio]

If re-elected for another four year term, Mayor Snyder has two targets he would like to pursue. The first being getting something done with the old facilities of the former Lincoln Developmental Center, which has been vacant for over ten years now. Mayor Snyder also would like to see some improvements made to 5th Street, which is an old farm road that has seen housing and business development build up around it.

[audio:112112snyderreelect3.mp3] [/audio]

Lincoln's Republican primary will be held Tuesday, February 26, 2013. The City’s general election will be held Tuesday, April 2, 2013. In addition to Mayor, the City will be electing a City Clerk, a City Treasurer, and eight aldermen, two each from the recently redistricted four City wards.

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Clinton Board of Education Issues Final of Working Cash Bonds

In June the Clinton Board of Education issued $10-million in working cash bonds as a part of the referendum that was approved earlier this year.

On Tuesday night, the Clinton Board of Education issued the rest of those bonds. Superintendent of Clinton Schools Dr. Jeff Holmes explains last night's action just completes the issuance of the bonds as they told the tax payers and voters they would do.

[audio:112112bonds1.mp3] [/audio]

Issuing the bonds in June had a two-fold benefit. The first was the interest rate was very low. With the recent election, school officials questioned whether the rates could remain low, so issuing them then ensured some of them would have that low interest rate. The second benefit according to Dr. Holmes was allowing local banks the opportunity to purchase a portion of the bonds issued.

[audio:112112bonds2.mp3] [/audio]

Dr. Holmes realized the local banks will not be able to buy all of them, however, he felt it would be best if the Board gave them the opportunity to do so and keep the money local. Issuing the working cash bonds will allow the school district to continue funding the new elementary school, and it will keep the tax rate consistent with it's current rate.

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Baseball 40-Man Roster Moves

>>Cubs Designate LaHair For Assignment

The Chicago Cubs say they have designated first baseman Bryan LaHair for assignment because he and the club are pursuing an opportunity for him in Japan.

An All-Star last season, LaHair batted .259 with 16 home runs and 40 RBIs in 130 games. He originally signed with the Cubs as a minor league free agent in December 2009.

The Cubs made several other moves on Tuesday, acquiring right-handed pitching prospect Barret Loux and a player to be named from the Texas Rangers for right-hander Jake Brigham. They also assigned right-hander Carlos Gutierrez outright to AAA Iowa after he cleared waivers and selected the contracts of 4 players - right-hander Trey McNutt from AA Tennessee, infielder Christian Villanueva from Class-A Daytona, infielder Logan Watkins from Tennessee and right-hander Robert Whitenack from Daytona.

>>Cards Make Roster Changes

(St. Louis, MO) -- The St. Louis Cardinals added four pitchers from their Double-A team to the 40-man roster. Michael Blazek, Keith Butler, Eric Fornataro and Kevin Siegrist will not be available in the Rule Five draft. St. Louis still has one opening left on the 40-man roster.

>>Sox Add Five To 40-Man Roster

The Chicago White Sox have added five players to their 40-man roster.

The White Sox selected the contracts of outfielder Jared Mitchell, catcher Josh Phegley, right-handed pitcher Andre Rienzo, left-handed pitcher Santos Rodriguez and right-handed pitcher Charles Shirek from AAA Charlotte on Tuesday.

A first-round pick in 2009, Mitchell hit.237 with 69 runs and 21 steals for AA Birmingham and Charlotte.

Phegley posted a .996 fielding percentage and threw out 30 of 65 potential base stealers for Charlotte.

Rienzo was 7-3 with a 2.53 ERA in 18 starts for Class A Winston-Salem, Birmingham and Charlotte.

Rodriguez was 2-4 with a 2.90 ERA over 42 relief appearances with Birmingham and Charlotte, while Shirek was 11-5 with a 3.65 ERA over 28 games (26 starts) at AAA.

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Cutler Unsure If He'll Play This Week

Bears quarterback Jay Cutler says he is not sure if he will play this week after missing Monday's loss at San Francisco because of a concussion.

Cutler says on ESPN Radio's "Waddle & Silvy" show that he's feeling "as normal as can be" and will play again this season. But he "can't say for sure" he'll be ready for Minnesota this weekend.

Cutler says he's "going through the process" to get cleared to return. He met Monday with the doctor and still has some "hoops to jump through."

Cutler did not travel with the team to San Francisco after being injured the previous week on a helmet-to-helmet hit by Houston's Tim Dobbins in a loss to the Texans.

Jason Campbell started against the 49ers, and the Bears got pounded 32-7.

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Bulls Resume Road Trip Tonight In Houston

The Bulls resume their five-game road trip tonight in Houston against the Rockets. Chicago has lost its last two games after opening the trip with a win in Phoenix. The Bulls are now 5-and-5 on the season. They will wrap up the trip Saturday in Milwaukee.

NBA
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Philadelphia 76ers 106, Toronto Raptors 98
New York Knicks 102, New Orleans Hornets 80
Los Angeles Lakers 95, Brooklyn Nets 90

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ISU Tops Farleigh Dickson

Jackie Carmichael scored 17 points and Illinois State defeated Fairleigh Dickinson 91-58 Tuesday night.

Bryant Allen added 16 points for the Redbirds (4-0) in a game that was part of the South Padre Island Invitational.

Johnny Hill scored 11 points and Jon Ekey had 10 points for ISU, which led 41-33 at halftime. The Redbirds scored the first 10 points of the second half and put the game out of reach.

Melquan Bolding led the Knights (0-3) with 16 points. Lonnie Robinson had 13 points and Mustafaa Jones scored 12 for Fairleigh Dickinson.

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Illinois Bounces Chaminade

Illinois advanced to the championship game of the Maui Invitational with a 84-61 win over host Chaminade. Joseph Bertrand scored 14 points in the victory. The Fighting Illini take on Butler in the finals today.

NCAA Top-25 Basketball ("USA Today" Rankings)
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#1 Indiana Hoosiers 82, Georgetown Hoyas 72 (Brooklyn, NY)
#7 Florida Gators 58, Savannah State Tigers 40
Butler Bulldogs 82, #9 North Carolina Tar Heels 71 (at Maui, HI)
#11 Kansas Jayhawks 73, Saint Louis Billikens 59 (at Kansas City, MO)
#12 Creighton Bluejays 105, Longwood Lancers 57 (at Las Vegas, NV)
#13 UCLA Bruins 60, Georgia Bulldogs 56 (at Brooklyn, NY)
#19 Michigan State Spartans 74, Boise State Broncos 70
#20 Cincinnati Bearcats 91, Campbell Fighting Camels 72

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Maroons Open Season On Sour Note

The Clinton Maroons were defeated in their first game of the season by the Tri-City Tornadoes 40-32 at the Mt. Pulaski Thanksgiving Tournament. The Tornadoes were led by Bryce Paul, scoring 17 points. Clinton's top scorers were Colten Reeves with 16 points and Camryn Ward scoring 8 points.  Clinton faces off against Greenview tomorrow at 8:00. You can hear the game live on 92.3 FM WHOW and online at dewittdailynews.com.

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UPDATED: Clinton Alum Enjoys Success College Football Career

A Clinton High School alum recently concluded his collegiate football career that helped turn around a local program.

Colin Duling graduated from Clinton High School as a three sport standout athlete, and chose to pursue football after high school, when he attended Illinois College in Jacksonville. Duling says the big sell for him to attend Illinois College as a receiver and to be a part of turning the program around, which they were able to do.

[audio:112112duling1.mp3] [/audio]

In being a part of turning the football program at IC around was being a part of one of the nation's best offenses for Div. III football. Duling explains his Jr. and Sr. years their high powered offense allowed him to be successful.

[audio:112112duling2.mp3] [/audio]

Duling says he cannot see his future without football, so he plans on going into coaching.

Duling was part of the winningest class in Illinois College Football history with 27 victories over four seasons. That included a 9-1 regular season mark and birth in the Division III playoffs in 2011 and 8-2 record this season.

Individually, the 6-3 195 lb. Senior had a total of 97 receptions for 1,502 yards and 13 touchdowns during his four year career.

Duling is the son of Larry and Susan Duling of Clinton and is majoring in Political Science and International Studies. He will graduate in May of 2013.

 

Colin Duling On Football Career:

[audio:111512ColinDulingOnFootballCareer.mp3] [/audio]

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Senior Driving Class To Be Put On Next Week

There will be a new drivers' safety class for senior citizens next week.

The TRIAD program of DeWitt County has made it possible for local seniors to take the "AARP Drivers' Safety Class". The Dewitt County Triad which is a group of law enforcement and social agencies that focus on the elderly in the community and their needs. The class will be open to people who are ages 50 and over. Clinton Police Chief Mike Reidy says the class will cover a variety of driving topics.

[audio:112112seniordriving.mp3] [/audio]

Chief Reidy says if people pass the class, they will be eligible for discounts on automobile insurance. This discount will be good for 3 years. There will also be a cost to the class, but there will be a small discount if you are an AARP member. There will also be a special discount for veterans.

[audio:112112seniordriving2.mp3] [/audio]

Chief Reidy believes the discount on the insurance should make up for the fee charged by AARP for the class.

[audio:112112seniordriving3.mp3] [/audio]

The class will be held at the Warner Library on November 26th and 27th. AARP members will pay $12 and non-member pay $14. Chief Reidy says the class can hold to up to 25. There is still plenty of room to enroll for the class, so he encourages anyone interested to sign up so the class is not canceled. If anyone is interested they can call the Clinton Police Department at 935-9443.

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Clinton Maroons defeated by Tri City Tornadoes

Clinton Maroons are defeated in the first game of the season by the Tri-City Tornadoes 40-32.  The Tornadoes were led by Bryce Paul, scoring 17 points.  Clinton's top scorers were Colten Reeves with 16 points and Camryn Ward scoring 8 points.  Clinton faces off against Greenview tomorrow at 8:00.

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Reaction To Gov. Quinn's Grassroots Site Varies

Reaction to Gov. Pat Quinn's online campaign to excite Illinoisans about pension reform is prompting scathing criticism, mock Facebook and Twitter sites and some praise.

After months of promising details, Quinn launched a website over the weekend that gives a brief history on pensions and summaries of the problem. The sometimes campy site also includes a cartoon snake named "Squeezy the Pension Python."

A leading union called the website "silly." A lawmaker who's worked on pensions says it should be more serious.

But other lawmakers and social media experts say it's innovative and could work in Quinn's favor.

Brookings Institution political scientist Darrell West says the tactic could attract new interest, but Quinn needs to act fast to capitalize on it.

Quinn has given few details about what's next.

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Eureka College To Honor Sandra Day O'Connor

Eureka College plans to name retired U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor an honorary Ronald Reagan fellow.

The small, private school says it will honor O'Connor and add her to its Ronald W. Reagan Leadership Program on April 9.

O'Connor was the first woman to serve on the Supreme Court after being nominated by Reagan in 1981. Reagan is Eureka's most famous alum.

Eureka President J. David Arnold said O'Connor served with honor.

Past Reagan Leadership Program inductees include former U.S. Attorney General Edwin Meese and former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev.

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Clinton High School Gym Has New Look

As the winter sports season brings most sports into the gymnasium, those who frequent Clinton High School home sports events may notice something different about the new home of the Maroons.

Dr. Candice Swift, Principal at Clinton High School explains there was a joint effort between the school and the athletic boosters to spruce up the gym. Those that come out now will notice more uniform banners, uniform sponsorship logos and new record boards.

[audio:112012gym1.mp3] [/audio]

Along with the new look of the gymnasium's banners, there has been some paint work as well. Dr. Swift adds, not only has the gym changed, but the commons area has a new look as well. The commons was a major part of the renovations that took place over the summer, bringing a new concessions area to the high school.

[audio:112012gym2.mp3] [/audio]

The volleyball team was able to use the gym during the fall sports season, and now both the boys and girls basketball teams will use it as well. The girls basketball team has started their season and the boys basketball team begins their season tonight at the Mt. Pulaski Holiday Tournament and host their first home game a week from tonight.

The gym is also slated to get a new basketball floor next year.

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Baseball Notes

>>Marlins, Blue Jays Blockbuster Trade Finalized

(Undated) -- The blockbuster trade between the Miami Marlins and Toronto Blue Jays is now complete. Commissioner Bud Selig has given his stamp of approval on the twelve-player deal that sends shortstop Jose Reyes and pitchers Josh Johnson and Mark Buehrle [[ BURR-lee ]] to Toronto. The Jays also get catcher John Buck and utilityman Emilio Bonifacio, while Miami receives shortstop Yunel Escobar, catcher Jeff Mathis and five prospects. According to MLB.com, Toronto also gets four-million-dollars to help compensate for the nearly 165-million in salary the Jays acquired.

>>Task Force Finds Ways To Pay For Stadium

(Tampa, FL) -- A task force is issuing its report on the best ways to pay for a new stadium for the Tampa Bay Rays. The Baseball Stadium Financing Caucus looked at funding sources from both Hillsborough and Pinellas counties to find ways to pay for a new venue estimated to cost 500-million-dollars. The group thinks a new stadium could be built without imposing new taxes on residents but would need hotel and rental car taxes, redevelopment district funds, and bonds from local municipalities.

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NBA Scores

NBA
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Indiana Pacers 96, Washington Wizards 89
Charlotte Bobcats 102, Milwaukee Bucks 98
Atlanta Hawks 81, Orlando Magic 72
Denver Nuggets 97, Memphis Grizzlies 92
Golden State Warriors 105, Dallas Mavericks 101 (OT)
Los Angeles Clippers 92, San Antonio Spurs 87
Utah Jazz 102, Houston Rockets 91

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Maryland Bolting ACC For Big Ten

Maryland is leaving the ACC to join the Big Ten.  The university made the announcement yesterday.  Rutgers is expected to follow the Terrapins to the Big Ten and leave the Big East.  Maryland's arrival gives the Big Ten 13 member schools.  The Terps tenure in the Big Ten will start July 1st, 2014.

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Bears Crushed; Ditka Recovering From Stroke

>>Niners Suffocate Bears In Victory

(San Francisco, CA) -- The 49ers used a devastating defense to hold down the Bears in a 32-7 win. Aldon Smith had five-and-a-half sacks for a Niners defense that forced two turnovers and allowed just 143 yards. San Francisco's backup quarterback Colin Kaepernick was brilliant in his first-career start, throwing for 243 yards with two touchdowns. Frank Gore added 78 yards on the ground while Vernon Davis caught six passes for 83 yards and a touchdown. San Francisco moved to 7-2-and-1 with the win. Chicago also started a backup quarterback in Jason Campbell, who threw for just 107 yards with a touchdown and two interceptions. Matt Forte managed just 63 yards on 21 carries for Chicago, which fell to 7-and-3. Brandon Marshall caught the lone touchdown for the Bears.

>>Ditka Recovering After Stroke

(Undated) -- Former Bears head coach Mike Ditka is recovering after suffering a minor stroke on Friday. Ditka appeared via satelitte in his regular role last night as an analyst for ESPN's "Monday Night Football" prior to the Bears game at San Francisco. The 73-year-old says he's feeling much better.

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Illini Look To Control Big Plays; End Losing Streak

It's tough to narrow the list of problems plaguing Illinois to just one ahead of Saturday's matchup with Northwestern.

Big plays jump to the front of the line.

Coach Tim Beckman said Monday that Illinois (2-9, 0-7 Big Ten) was undone by big plays in last week's 20-17 loss to Purdue. The worst were a run and a pass that each covered 63 yards. One ended in a touchdown and the other set one up.

Beckman's defense now faces a Northwestern team (8-3, 4-3) that lives by big plays. Beckman said Illinois will have to pursue the ball and make open-field tackles to control the Wildcats.

But the Illini will have to do it without linebacker Jonathan Brown, the team's leading tackler before suffering a shoulder injury last month. Now Beckman says Brown is done for the season.

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Illinois Pounds USC At Maui Invitational

>>Illinois Crushes USC

(Lahaini, HI) -- Brandon Paul scored 26 points as Illinois smoked USC, 94-64, to move to the semifinals in the Maui Invitational. The Fighting Illini outscored the Trojans 57-26 in the first half as they moved to 4-and-0. The Illini face host school Chaminade in the semifinals tonight.

NCAA Basketball ("USA Today" Top-25 Poll)
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#1 Indiana Hoosiers 66, Georgia Bulldogs 53 (at Brooklyn, NY)
#9 North Carolina Tar Heels 95, Mississippi State Bulldogs 49 (at Maui, HI)
#10 Arizona Wildcats 94, Long Beach State 49ers 72
#11 Kansas Jayhawks 78, Washington State Cougars 41 (at Kansas City, MO)
Georgetown Hoyas 78, #13 UCLA Bruins 70 (at Brooklyn, NY)
New Mexico Lobos 66, #23 Connecticut Huskies 60

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Clinton Water Needs Computer Upgrade

The computer system that runs the Clinton Water Department has recently experienced a glitch, and it is working, but not ideally.

This has forced the Water Department to make an emergency purchase to upgrade their computer system that runs the department. John Wise, Commissioner of Public Property, explains the entire system is automated and right now the system is working just fine.

[audio:112012waterupgrade1.mp3] [/audio]

The upgrades to the water system computer will make it run quicker and more efficiently. Commissioner Wise explains for the time being, the system is doing everything just like it is supposed to, so there is no need to worry for the public. However, the quicker they can make the upgrade happen, the quicker things can go back to normalcy at the automated end of the operation.

[audio:112012waterupgrade2.mp3] [/audio]

A SCADA system, or supervisory control and data acquisition, is a type of industrial control system that monitors and control industrial processes, in this case, the Clinton water system.

The city approved the upgrade for just over $54-hundred.

Other items from the Clinton City Council Monday evening...

>> The Council approved the sale of the DJWH Ambulance for $35-hundred.

>>Also the sale of the hospital's medical supplies and equipment from the ambulance for $19,687.

>>They approved the purchase of a bucket truck for the streets department at a cost of $136-thousand.

>>The bid was approved for the demolition of the house at 509 North Monroe Street. The bid was awarded to K&K Construction at a cost of $62-hundred.

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Report for 11-20

November 20, 2012

 

Jail Population: 64

Summons Served: 0

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

Tony Jennings, 52, Decatur, was issued a citation for No Valid Driver’s License. Jennings was issued a notice to appear and was released.

 

ALL SUSPECTS ARE PRESUMED INNOCENT UNTIL FOUND GUILTY IN A COURT OF LAW.

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Candle Hill Farms General Store Adds Another Business To Downtown Clinton

The downtown Clinton Square's retail spaces continue to be filled.

Earlier this month Candle Hill Farms General Store opened. Owner of the store, Alice Aber says she sells lots of traditional candies, chocolates, pies and many other items. She explains she's modeled her store after a traditional general store and she makes all her baked goods right there on sight.

[audio:112012newstore1.mp3] [/audio]

Having grown up in northern New York, Aber explains she wanted to bring back some of the old time stores that were popular when she was a child. She explains having worked in a store like hers when she was younger has always been an inspiration to open a general store.

[audio:112012newstore2.mp3] [/audio]

Along with traditional candies, Aber offers sixteen varieties of fudge and several varieties of pies. With Thanksgiving right around the corner, she says she is going to work hard to have a wide variety of pies, along with the traditional apple and pumpkin pies.

[audio:112012newstore3.mp3] [/audio]

Along with the many food items, Aber will also feature the artwork of local artists. Patrick Peterson has some artwork on display and for sale at her new store, along with Caleb Smith, who is a teenager who makes jewelry on the side for extra money.

[audio:112012newstore4.mp3] [/audio]

Candle Hill Farms General Store is located at 114 Warner Court on the downtown Clinton Square. It is just a few businesses down from the State Bank of Lincoln's downtown location. They are open 11 am to 6 pm.

They will be closed Thanksgiving Day.

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Lady Maroons Cruise By LSA

 width=CLINTON (4-1)   64
LSA                  31
 
SCORING BY QUARTER:
CLINTON      16    10    20     18
LSA              6      5      9      11
 
CLINTON SCORING:
ENNIS 0-1-1, GINGER 2-6-6, NEWBERRY 1-0-2, HICKMAN 8-1-17,
TOOL 3-2-8, TOOHILL 2-0-5, SCOTT 4-3-11, BIEBER 6-2-14
TOTALS 26-11-64
 
LSA SCORING:
S BROWN 1-3-5,  HENNE 2-1-8, C SALEFSKI 3-2-8, H SALEFSKI 1-0-2,
BRUMTIZER 2-1-5, MELL 1-1-3
TOTALS 11-8-31
 
THREE POINT BASKETS:
CLINTON  1 (TOOHILL)
LSA 1 (HENNE)

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Illinois Keeping Pace On Obama Health Law

Illinois is ahead of some states but behind others on the path toward a working health insurance exchange, a cornerstone of President Barack Obama's health care law.

Obama's home state plans to partner with the federal government to run a health insurance exchange in the first year, for coverage starting in 2014. State officials plan to submit a blueprint for that partnership to the federal government Friday.

An exchange is an online marketplace where consumers and small businesses can shop for health insurance.

So far, Gov. Pat Quinn has been unable to get Illinois lawmakers to pass legislation needed for the state to build its own exchange.

Looking ahead, Quinn adviser Michael Gelder says he's confident state lawmakers will pass the necessary legislation now that Obama has been re-elected.

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Anti-Gun Group Gives Two Awards

Anti-gun advocates have honored Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn and Congressman Bob Dold with awards for their leadership.

The Illinois Council Against Handgun Violence announced the awards last week.

They cited Quinn's leadership in the fight against gun violence, including attempts to keep Illinois as the only state that doesn't allowed concealed carry. They also pointed to the Chicago Democrat's recent proposal to ban assault weapons in Illinois.

The group also recognized Dold, a suburban Chicago Republican. The group says Dold crossed party lines to oppose "dangerous" gun legislation.

The council was founded in 1975 by several suburban Chicago women concerned about handgun violence. The group's goal is to raise public awareness and enact change in laws and behavior.

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Illinois Financial Outlook Still Grim

Illinois' financial outlook is still looking quite grim.  Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka released her quarterly report, which highlights the state poor fiscal condition.  According to the report, the state's unpaid bills has grown by two-billion dollars, compared to this time last year.  That's despite the income tax hike which was implemented last year.  The extra 150-million dollars from the hike was supposed to pay down the backlog of unpaid bills but Topinka says lawmakers have found other ways to use the cash.  Topinka also says potential shortages in the fiscal year 2013 budget further cloud Illinois' fiscal future.

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Prof Leaves Over $400-Thousand To Geography Department He Founded

The man who started the geography department at Southern Illinois University in Edwardsville more than four decades ago didn't forget that department before he died.

Melvin Kazeck bequeathed $476,000 to the university for the department he had chaired. Kazek died in February,

He developed the department in 1958 and retired in 1976. It now has a dozen faculty members, eight graduate assistants, and four assistants.

The department's chairwoman, Gillian Acheson, calls Kazek's gift "so thoughtful because it will directly benefit students."

The university's dean of the college of arts and sciences, Aldemaro Romano, says the gift will fund two more graduate assistantships for the department.

The university has about 120 undergraduate geography majors and 30 to 40 students pursuing master's degrees.

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Gov. Quinn Launches Grassroots Campaign For Pension Reform

 width=GOVERNOR PAT QUINN IS LAUNCHING A NEW GRASSROOTS CAMPAIGN TO RAISE AWARENESS ABOUT THE NEED FOR PENSION REFORM IN ILLINOIS.

THE CAMPAIGN INCLUDES A VIDEO, EXPLAINING THE PROBLEM…A NEW WEBSITE…FACEBOOK PAGE AND TWITTER SAYS GOVERNOR QUINN.

[audio:squeeze1.mp3] [/audio]

GOVERNOR QUINN SAYS THE CURRENT PENSION MESS HAS BEEN 70 YEARS IN THE MAKING…AND CAN ONLY BE FIXED IF EVERYONE IS EDUCATED ON THE SUBJECT…AND WORKS TOGETHER TO FIND A SOLUTION.

[audio:squeeze2.mp3] [/audio]

THE NEW WEBSITE: THIS IS MY ILLINOIS DOT COM. THE PUBLIC IS ENCOURAGED TO SHARE THEIR THOUGHTS ON PENSION REFORM.

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Child Protection Network Seeking Partnership With DeWitt County Businesses For Seasonal Drive

One local non-profit agency is seeking DeWitt County businesses to step up this holiday season and support their cause in a non-financial way.

 width=The Children's Advocacy Center serves DeWitt, McLean, and Livingston Counties' sexually abused children. Through the Christmas season they ask businesses in their service areas to put up what they call their "Blue Kids Trees". Jake Walters with the Advocacy Network explains their "Blue Kids Trees" can be placed in area businesses, free of charge, and they have cardboard blue kids on them with a short message, and a short list of items they are in need of.

[audio:111912bluekids1.mp3] [/audio]

Along with the "Blue Kids Trees" that they do during the holiday season, there is also a benefit that takes place in February, which serves as a fundraiser, that provides the Advocacy Center with a large chunk of their yearly budget. Walters says, over the years, the event has gone from local celebrities trying to solicite money from people to a nice evening with dinner and several items auctioned off.

[audio:111912bluekids2.mp3] [/audio]

Things auctioned off through the course of the night include trips to Africa, Ireland, and stateside trips. Walters explains there is a portion of the night where they explain to those in attendance an item they have a goal of obtaining, and they basically ask for donations to acquire that. Last year, their goal was new recording equipment for their interview room. They were successful in obtaining that and have since installed and been able to use it.

[audio:111912bluekids3.mp3] [/audio]

The event this year is February 16th at the Uptown Marriott in Normal. Tickets are $65/person and include admission to the event and dinner. Contact 309-888-5656 to make a reservation or receive more information.

For more information about receiving a Blue Kids Tree in your business, you can also contact the Advocacy Center at 309-888-5656. The Blue Kids Trees go out the week after Thanksgiving and will remain up until the end of December.

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Lincoln Community High School Proud of FY13 Balanced Budget

Despite the tough economic times, one local school district can say they will have a balanced budget for this year.

 width=Lincoln Community High School will have a balanced budget for this current fiscal year. Superintendent of Lincoln High School, Robert Bagby explains they have had to work harder to make that happen because the state has cut close to a million dollars from their revenues over the past several years. He feels working hard to balance a budget is becoming the norm, not just in school districts, but households across the state.

[audio:111912lincolnbudget1.mp3] [/audio]

A select number of school districts are fortunate enough to not have to rely heavily on Illinois for their main source of revenue. Lincoln High School is not one of those districts, and yet they are still able to balance a budget. What may be more impressive about that, according to Bagby, the district has maintained their property tax rate now, for almost 20 years now.

[audio:111912lincolnbudget2.mp3] [/audio]

To maintain a balanced budget despite a million dollars in State funding cuts, Lincoln High School could not have maintained the spending levels they had. Bagby explains they did not cut any programs, but instead cut administrators and a few teachers. He notes however, those cuts were more a result of declining enrollments than anything else.

[audio:111912lincolnbudget3.mp3] [/audio]

Bagby says, like most school boards, the Lincoln Community High School Board of Education prides themselves on being accountable to the tax payers for their portion of their tax bill.

For diligent book keepers, Bagby notes tax payers can look back to their tax bills from 1996 and see the property tax rate, not the total amount because the property would be worth more, but the rate would be same as it is today.

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Dr. John Warner Hospital Foundation Raising Funds For Kitchen Items

 width=The Dr. John Warner Hospital Foundation has gone a different direction this year for their annual fundraising effort.

Each winter, friends and supporters of the city-owned hospital look forward to the annual Gala put on by the Foundation. Because of the shape of the economy, President of the Foundation, Dixie Walden explains they decided it would be best to try something less expensive for supporters of their cause.

[audio:111612mailing1.mp3] [/audio]

The DJWH Foundation has two goals of purchases this year for the hospital. The first is a food warmer for the kitchen. Walden says right now the one they have is 25 years old, and parts for repairs are either too expensive because they are hard to find, or they cannot be found at all. She feels this would greatly improve the operations in the kitchen.

[audio:111612mailing2.mp3] [/audio]

The other purchase the Foundation would like to make are overlap food trays. Walden says the current ones, are also a little dated and very narrow. She feels providing new trays would benefit the patients of the hospital that require meals from the kitchen in their rooms.

[audio:111612mailing3.mp3] [/audio]

The Foundation's goal is to raise $30-thousand through this fundraiser. The Foundation began their mailing campaign in September and hope to have a majority of the donations by the end of the month. There is still time to make a donation. To make a donation to the DJWH Foundation, you can mail a check payable to the DJWH Foundation and those can be mailed to the Hospital, at 422 West White Street in Clinton.

You can also get more information about the DJWH Foundation and their campaign at djwhospital.org/foundation.

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Keselowski Wins First Sprint Cup Championship

Brad Keselowski has won his first Sprint Cup championship.  Keselowski finished 15th in NASCAR's season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway to become the first driver other than Jimmie Johnson or Tony Stewart to win the title since Kurt Busch in 2004.  It's also the first championship for the owner of the number-two car, Roger Penske. 

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Maryland, Rutgers In Talks To Join Big 10

Maryland and Rutgers are in talks to bring the Big Ten membership to 14.  Yahoo! Sports reports an announcement could come as early as today.  According to ESPN, Maryland's Board of Regents will decide by today at 9:00 a.m. if the university will accept the Big Ten's invitation into the conference.  Maryland would pay the ACC a 50-million-dollar exit fee, which was increased in September.  Rutgers' fee to leave the Big East is ten-million-dollars if it gives the conference a 27-month notice.  West Virginia paid double that to leave the Big East in a haste to join the Big 12 last season.

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Blazers Top Bulls

 width=Wesley Matthews and Nicolas Batum scored 21 points apiece and the Portland Trail Blazers beat the Chicago Bulls 102-94 on Sunday night for their first-3-game winning streak since the beginning of last season.

LaMarcus Aldridge added 18 points and 13 rebounds as all of Portland's starters were in double figures.

After trailing by as many as 15 in the third quarter, the Bulls came back to tie it at 73 early in the fourth. But Portland pulled back in front 87-75 on Matthews' pull-up jumper with 5:04 left.

Matthews appeared to seal it with a 3-pointer that made it 93-81 with 1:26 left, but Nate Robinson hit a 3 to narrow it to 98-94 with 13.9 seconds to go. Batum and Aldridge each hit a pair of free throws to help the Blazers hang on.

Joakim Noah had 16 points, 15 rebounds and eight assists for Chicago.

NBA
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New York Knicks 88, Indiana Pacers 76
Toronto Raptors 97, Orlando Magic 86
Philadelphia 76ers 86, Cleveland Cavaliers 79
Brooklyn Nets 99, Sacramento Kings 90
Oklahoma City Thunder 119, Golden State Warriors 109
Detroit Pistons 103, Boston Celtics 83
Los Angeles Lakers 119, Houston Rockets 108

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Illinois At Maui Tournament; ISU Pounds Delaware State

>>ISU Pounds Delaware State

 width=Tyler Brown scored 14 points, Jon Ekey and Nick Zeisloft each chipped in with 11 and Illinois State had no problems with visiting Delaware State in an 87-48 rout for the Redbirds on Sunday afternoon.

Illinois State (3-0) shot 54.7% from the field, making 35 of 64 shot attempts including a 9 for 23 mark from behind the arc. Jordan Threloff scored nine points, had eight rebounds and added four assists to his stat total while Bryant Allen and Jackie Carmichael each had eight points.

Delaware State (3-1) had only one player in double figures with Miles Bowman scoring 10 points off the bench, going a perfect 5 for 5 from the field in 20 minutes of play. The Hornets had 22 turnovers and were outrebounded 42 to 28 by the Redbirds.

Illinois State put the game away in the first half, taking a 49-22 lead at the break.

 width=NCAA Basketball ("USA Today" Top-25 Poll)
------
#2 Louisville Cardinals 80, Miami (OH) Redhawks 39
#4 Ohio State Buckeyes 77, Washington Huskies 66
Oklahoma State Cowboys 76, #6 North Carolina State Wolfpack 56
#8 Syracuse Orange 88, Wagner Seahawks 57
#9 Duke Blue Devils 88, Florida Gulf Coast Eagles 67
#10 Florida Gators 66, Middle Tennessee State Blue Raiders 45
#16 Creighton Bluejays 87, Presbyterian Blue Hose 58
#17 Baylor Bears 97. St. John's Red Storm 78
#19 Gonzaga Bulldogs 96, South Dakota Coyotes 58
#22 Michigan State Spartans 69, Texas Southern Tigers 41
#23 Wisconsin Badgers 73, Cornell Big Red 40
#24 Cincinnati Bearcats 93, North Carolina A&T Aggies 39

>>Illini Hoops Open Maui Invitational

(Maui, HI) -- Illinois basketball starts the Maui Invitational late tonight against USC. The Illini slipped past Hawaii on Saturday in overtime, 78-77, to improve to 3-and-0. Tonight's game is scheduled to tip off at 11:00 p.m. central time.

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Packers Win; Rams Pounded; Bears On MNF Without Cutler

 width=>>Packers Nip Lions

(Detroit, MI) -- Aaron Rodgers tossed for 236 yards, two touchdowns and an interception as the Packers defeated the Lions, 24-20. Randall Cobb hauled in nine balls for 74 yards and the game-winning touchdown with 1:55 to go for Green Bay, which moved to 7-and-3. M.D. Jennings returned an interception 72 yards for a score in the win. Matthew Stafford threw for 266 yards, a TD and a pair of picks for Detroit, which fell to 4-and-6. Calvin Johnson caught five balls for 143 yards and a touchdown, while Mikel Leshoure rushed for 84 yards and a score in defeat.

 width=>>Pats Post 59 On Colts In Rout

(Foxboro, MA) -- The Patriots tied a franchise mark with points scored in a game as they dismantled the Colts, 59-24. Andrew Luck threw for 334 yards, two scores and three interceptions for Indianapolis, which fell to 6-and-4. T.Y. Hilton made six catches for 100 yards and the two Luck TDs. The Colts host the Buffalo Bills next week.

 width=>>Jets Beat Rams To Snap Three-Game Skid

(St. Louis, MO) -- Bilal Powell had a pair of rushing touchdowns and Mark Sanchez threw for a score, as the Jets beat the Rams 27-14 in St. Louis. Sanchez finished 15-of-20 for 178 yards for New York, which snapped a three-game losing streak and improved to 4-and-6. Powell ended with 42 yards on 11 carries and Shonn Greene added 64 yards on 18 touches in the victory. Sam Bradford was 23-of-44 for 170 yards with two TDs, an interception and a fumble for the Rams, who fell to 0-4-and-1 over their last five games. Brandon Gibson had two TD catches in the setback.

NFL
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Atlanta Falcons 23, Arizona Cardinals 19
Dallas Cowboys 23, Cleveland Browns 20 (OT)
Cincinnati Bengals 28, Kansas City Chiefs 6
Washington Redskins 31, Philadelphia Eagles 6
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 27, Carolina Panthers 21 (OT)
Houston Texans 43, Jacksonville Jaguars 37 (OT)
New Orleans Saints 38, Oakland Raiders 17
Denver Broncos 30, San Diego Chargers 23
Baltimore Ravens 13, Pittsburgh Steelers 10

 width=>>Bears, 49ers Face Off In Battle Of Division Leaders

(San Francisco, CA) -- Division leaders meet up on "Monday Night Football" this week as the Chicago Bears battle the San Francisco 49ers at Candlestick Park. Chicago had its six-game winning streak snapped with a 13-6 loss to Houston last Sunday. Quarterback Jay Cutler suffered a concussion in that game and will not play this week. Jason Campbell will get the start instead. The Bears lead the NFC North at 7-and-2. The 49ers are top the NFC West at 6-2-and-1. They settled for a 24-24 tie with the Rams last Sunday at home. Quarterback Alex Smith was knocked out of that game with a concussion, but had been cleared to practice this week. Head coach Jim Harbaugh is also back with the team after being treated at the hospital for an irregular heartbeat late last week.

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Illinois State Loses Chance At Conference Title; Illinois Football Loses Again

 width=>>North Dakota State Tops Illinois State For Conference Crown

Sam Ojuri and John Crockett each rushed for more than 100 yards and a touchdown, Marcus Williams returned a kickoff a career-long 98 yards for a score, and North Dakota State won the Missouri Valley Conference title Saturday, beating Illinois State 38-20 in both teams' regular-season finale.

Ojuri had 118 yards on the ground, including a 1-yard TD that capped a 21-point fourth quarter for the Bison (10-1, 7-1). Crockett scored on a 5-yard run and totaled 109 yards rushing.

Brock Jensen added two short rushing scores for NDSU, which improved to 11-0 on the road the past two seasons. Jensen had just 96 yards passing, but NDSU rolled up 274 yards on the ground.

Matt Brown threw for 212 yards, including a 5-yard touchdown to Jordan Neukirch, and ran for a score for the Redbirds (8-3, 5-3), who could have claimed a share of the title with a victory.

 width=>>Purdue Holds On At Illinois

Akeem Hunt turned a short pass into a 63-yard touchdown, and Purdue took another step toward a second consecutive bowl berth with a 20-17 victory at Illinois on Saturday.

Hunt's big play gave the Boilermakers (5-6, 2-5 Big Ten) a 13-3 lead in the third quarter. After Illinois pulled within 13-10 on a 16-yard touchdown run by Dami Ayoola, Ralph Bolden's 63-yard run set up Akeem Shavers' 6-yard TD scamper for a 20-10 Purdue lead.

With their first back-to-back Big Ten road wins since 2009, the Boilermakers stayed alive in its chase for postseason play. If Purdue can beat Indiana at home next Saturday to earn bowl eligibility, it will be its first 3-game winning streak in one season since 2007.

Illinois (2-9, 0-7) remained the only team in the Big Ten without a conference win. The Illini have a 13-game conference losing streak.

>>Southern Illinois Throttles Western

Kory Faulkner threw a touchdown pass and ran for another score as Southern Illinois defeated Western Illinois 35-0 Saturday in the season finale for both teams.

Steve Strother ran for 90 yards for the Salukis (6-6, 5-3 Missouri Valley), who held Western Illinois to 16 yards rushing and 126 total yards. Kevin Reed returned an interception 18 yards for a touchdown for SIU.

Southern Illinois sacked three Western quarterbacks five times, and the Leathernecks (3-8, 1-7) punted 11 times in the game.

NCAA Football (BCS Standings)
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Baylor Bears 52, #1 Kansas State Wildcats 24
#13 Stanford Cardinal 17, #2 Oregon Ducks 14 (OT)
#3 Notre Dame Fighting Irish 38, Wake Forest Demon Deacons 0
#4 Alabama Crimson Tide 49, Western Carolina Catamounts 0
#5 Georgia Bulldogs 45, Georgia Southern Eagles 14
#6 Florida Gators 23, Jacksonville State Gamecocks 0
#7 LSU Tigers 41, Ole Miss Rebels 35
#8 Texas A&M Aggies 47, Sam Houston State Bearkats 28
#9 South Carolina Gamecocks 24, Wofford Terriers 7
#10 Florida State Seminoles 41, Maryland Terrapins 14
#11 Clemson Tigers 62, North Carolina State Wolfpack 48
#12 Oklahoma Sooners 50, West Virginia Mountaineers 49
#14 Nebraska Cornhuskers 38, Minnesota Golden Gophers 14
#17 UCLA Bruins 38, #18 USC Trojans 28
Utah State Aggies 48, #20 Louisiana Tech Bulldogs 41 (OT)
#21 Michigan Wolverines 42, Iowa Hawkeyes 17
#22 Rutgers Scarlet Knights 10, Cincinnati Bearcats 3
#24 Oklahoma State Cowboys 59, #23 Texas Tech Red Raiders 21
#25 Washington Huskies 38, Colorado Buffaloes 3 

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Weekend Report

November 17, 2012

 

Jail Population: 63

Summons Served: 7

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

November 18, 2012

 

Jail Population: 63

Summons Served: 2

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

November 19, 2012

 

Jail Population: 62

Summons Served: 0

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

Jordan Burns, 28, Decatur, was issued a citation for Speeding (84 mph in a 65 mph zone). Burns posted her IL Driver’s License as bond and was released.

 

Steven Lambert, 34, Kenney, was issued citations for Driving Under Influence and Improper Lane Usage. Lambert posted the necessary bond and was released.

 

Loren Riddle, 24, Clinton, was issued citations for Driving Under Influence, Operating Uninsured Vehicle, Improper Lane Usage, Driving While License Suspended, and Illegal Transportation Alcohol. Riddle posted the necessary bond and was released.

 

Jeremy Phillips, 33, Atlanta, was issued citations for Operating Uninsured Vehicle and Improper Lane Usage. Phillips posted his IL Driver’s License as bond and was released.

 

Gregory Boyd, 48, Mahomet, was issued a citation for Speeding (75 mph in a 55 mph zone). Boyd posted the necessary bond and was released.

 

Melissa Kirby, 45, Farmer City, was issued a citation for Speeding (80 mph in a 55 mph zone). Kirby posted her IL Driver’s License as bond and was released.

 

David Randolph, 62, Clinton, was issued citations for Improper Use Of Registration, No Valid Registration, and Operating Uninsured Vehicle. Randolph posted the necessary bond and was released.

 

ALL SUSPECTS ARE PRESUMED INNOCENT UNTIL FOUND GUILTY IN A COURT OF LAW.

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Clinton Police Weekend Report

CITATIONS

11/17/12

KATELYN R. LOCKARD 18, CLINTON FAILURE TO WEAR SEAT BELT. BOND POSTED

CHAD M. MINKS 37, DECATUR SPEEDING 75 MPH IN A 55 MPH ZONE. NOTICE TO APPEAR ISSUED

ALYSSA A. WITEK 24, LASALLE SPEEDING 78 MPH IN A 55 MPH ZONE. NOTICE TO APPEAR ISSUED

KRISTIN N. CARAPELLA 30, BLOOMINGTON 75 MPH IN A 55 MPH ZONE. BOND POSTED

CHANCE A. MILLS 30, CLINTON SPEEDING 31 MPH IN A 20 MPH ZONE. BOND POSTED

 

11/18/12

JEREMY L. YOUNG 19, DECATUR SPEEDING 78 MPH IN A 55 MPH ZONE. BOND POSTED

JILL A. ESCOBAR 46, DECATUR SPEEDING 75 MPH IN A 55 MPH ZONE. NOTICE TO APPEAR ISSUED

 

ON 11/16/12 CLINTON POLICE ARRESTED JENNIFER A. HARDY 36, DEWITT FOR RETAIL THEFT, AGGRAVATED BATTERY OF A PEACE OFFICER, AND RESISTING/OBSTRUCTING A PEACE OFFICER. HARDY WAS TRANSPORTED TO THE DEWITT COUNTY JAIL AND RELEASED TO CORRECTIONS.

 

 

 

 

 

 

ALL SUSPECTS ARE PRESUMED INNOCENT UNTIL FOUND GUILTY IN A COURT OF LAW

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Clinton Chamber's Haunted House Enjoys Successful 2012

It was another successful year for the Clinton Chamber's Haunted House.

The "Terror On Washington Street" drew another solid crowd in 2012. Executive Director of the Clinton Chamber, Marian Brisard explains they were short of their goal for 5-thousand people, but overall, it was another successful year.

[audio:112012hauntedrecap1.mp3] [/audio]

The attendance numbers may not have been as good if not for an honor the Haunted House received. HauntedIllinois.com reviewed the "Terror On Washington Street" Haunted House and gave them a top 10 rating of all the haunted houses in Illinois. Brisard feels this may have boosted their attendance this year.

[audio:112012hauntedrecap2.mp3] [/audio]

While the Chamber was in the midst of their biggest fundraiser, they were also working to benefit the community as well. Brisard explains through the course of the weekends they were open, those who brought a can of food received a dollar off admission. She says there were people who generously brought more than one can of food, and were content with the dollar discount.

[audio:112012hauntedrecap3.mp3] [/audio]

The 2nd Annual Canned Food Drive collected a total of 477 cans of food that were donated to DOVE/RSVP of Clinton, Community Action Partnership of Central Illinois and First Christian Church's food pantries.

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Cubs announce deal with C Navarro

The Chicago Cubs formally announced a 1-year deal with former All-Star catcher Dioner Navarro Friday.

Navarro's salary for next season is $1.75 million. He could earn another $250,000 in performance bonuses.

The 28-year-old has spent all or part of the last nine seasons in the major leagues, playing for the Yankees, Dodgers, Rays and Reds. Last year, he split the season between Cincinnati and AAA, batting .290 with two home runs and 12 RBIs in 24 games with the Reds.

The switch-hitting Venezuelan was a 2008 All-Star with Tampa Bay.

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Bears' Campbell To Start For Cutler Against 49ers

Jason Campbell is getting the start at quarterback for the Chicago Bears when they play the 49ers Monday night in San Francisco.  Jay Cutler will miss the game after suffering a concussion this past Sunday night against Houston.  It came as a result of an illegal hit by Texans linebacker Tim Dobbins, who has been fined 30-thousand-dollars.  Cutler stayed in the game for seven more snaps before Campbell came on to play the second half.  Campbell finished 11-of-19 for 94 yards.  The Bears lead the NFC North at 7-and-2.  The Niners lead the NFC West at 6-2-and-1.

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Clark leads Western Illinois past Buffalo 67-58

Ceola Clark scored 19 points, Don McAvoy added nine points and a career-high 11 rebounds, and Western Illinois beat Buffalo 67-58 on Friday night at the Coaches vs. Cancer Classic.

Terell Parks chipped in 12 points and Adam Link had 10 for the Leathernecks (2-1). Parks' three blocked shots moved him into fifth place all-time at Western Illinois.

Will Regan and Javon McCrea had 13 points apiece for the Bulls (1-2), and Jared Oldham scored 11.

The back & forth game featured six ties and 13 lead changes before Western Illinois took the lead for good shortly after halftime. A 13-3 run, capped by two McAvoy free throws, put the Leathernecks ahead 50-40, and WIU would later lead by as many as 13.

Western Illinois shot 46% from the field, while Buffalo made 39% of its shots.

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FRIDAY'S SCOREBOARD

NBA
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Indiana Pacers 103, Dallas Mavericks 83
Philadelphia 76ers 99, Utah Jazz 93
Orlando Magic 110, Detroit Pistons 106
Golden State Warriors 106, Minnesota Timberwolves 98
Oklahoma City Thunder 110, New Orleans Hornets 95
Memphis Grizzlies 105, New York Knicks 95
Atlanta Hawks 112, Sacramento Kings 96
Portland Trail Blazers 119, Houston Rockets 117 (OT)
Los Angeles Lakers 114, Phoenix Suns 102

NCAA Basketball ("USA Today" Top-25 Poll)
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#3 Kentucky Wildcats 103, Lafayette Leopards 49
#6 North Carolina State Wolfpack 94, Massachusetts Minutemen 76 (at San Juan, Puerto Rico)
#11 North Carolina Tar Heels 78, Long Beach State 49ers 63
#14 Missouri Tigers 74, Nicholls State Colonels 54
Colorado Buffaloes 60, #17 Baylor Bears 58
Saint Joseph's Hawks 79, #21 Notre Dame Fighting Irish 70 (OT) (at Brooklyn, NY)

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IL Unemployment Rate Holds Steady

THE ILLINOIS UNEMPLOYMENT RATE HELD STEADY IN OCTOBER.

STATE DEPARTMENT OF EMPLOYMENT SECURITY SPOKESPERSON GREG RIVARA SAYS ALTHOUGH THE JOBLESS RATE REMAINED AT EIGHT POINT EIGHT PERCENT…ABOUT 48-HUNDRED JOBS WERE ADDED IN ILLINOIS LAST MONTH.

[audio:ides1116.mp3][/audio]

JOB SECTORS WITH THE MOST JOB GROWTH IN OCTOBER INCLUDE EDUCATION AND HEALTH SERVICES…AND LEISURE AND HOSPITALITY.

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White Urges People To Look Out For Water Damaged Cars

SECRETARY OF STATE JESSE WHITE IS URGING THOSE IN THE MARKET FOR A USED CAR TO BE ON THE LOOKOUT FOR WATER DAMAGE.

SECRETARY WHITE SAYS SHOPPERS NEED TO MAKE SURE THE VEHICLE THEY ARE CONSIDERING DOES NOT HAVE FLOOD DAMAGE FROM LAST MONTH’S HURRICANE SANDY.

[audio:floodcars.mp3][/audio]

WHITE SAYS HIS OFFICE WILL SCREEN TITLE APPLICATIONS FROM STATES IMPACTED BY HURRICANE SANDY. APPLICANTS WILL HAVE TO SUBMIT A HURRICANE DISASTER DISCLOSURE STATEMENT SIGNED BY THE ORIGINAL OWNER AND AN INSURANCE AGENT.

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Reports Of Child Abuse Rise in Downstate Illinois

The Department of Children and Family Services says reports of child abuse and neglect are increasing across downstate Illinois.

From July through October, there were more than 25,000 calls to the state's child abuse hotline, representing a nearly 5 1/2% increase from the same period last year.

There were 35 downstate counties that showed abuse and neglect rates more than double the statewide average, according to the data compiled by Northwestern University.

Most of those counties were in the far southern part of the state.

The department offered no possible explanation for the increase but said it was part of a decade-long trend.

DCFS is encouraging anyone who suspects abuse or neglect of a child to call its hotline at 1-800-25-ABUSE.

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National Smokeout Week

THURSDAY WAS THE GREAT AMERICAN SMOKEOUT…AND A GREAT TIME TO GO AHEAD AND KICK THE HABIT.

IT’S ESTIMATED ABOUT 17 PERCENT OF ILLINOIS ADULTS…AND 18 PERCENT OF HIGH SCHOOLERS ARE SMOKERS. ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC HEALTH SPOKESPERSON SABRINA MILLER SAYS THE STATE HAS RESOURCES TO HELP YOU QUIT.

[audio:smokeout.mp3][/audio]

EXPERTS SAYS YOUR BODY QUICKLY BEGINS TO FEEL THE EFFECTS OF A SMOKE FREE LIFE…WITH LUNG FUNCTION AND CIRCULATION IMPROVING WITHIN JUST A FEW WEEKS OF QUITTING. AFTER ONE YEAR OF BEING SMOKE FREE…YOUR YOUR RISK OF CORONARY HEART DISEASE IS CUT IN HALF.

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University of Illinois' Graduate Employees Authorize Strike

Graduate employees at the University of Illinois campus in Urbana-Champaign have overwhelmingly approved a strike authorization vote.

The Graduate Employees Organization said Friday that the strike authorization vote passed by 86.7%. The vote means the organization will form a 23-person strike committee, which has the authority to call a strike.

The union and the university have been negotiating a new contract since August. A federal mediator recently joined negotiations. The next negotiation session is scheduled for the Monday after Thanksgiving.

Graduate employees are upset with the university's policy on tuition waivers. About 1,000 members of the union went on strike in 2009 in an effort to protect tuition waivers.

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Lt. Governor Outlines Steps To Keep College Affordable

Lt. Gov. Sheila Simon is urging lawmakers and education officials to help keep college affordable.

Simon spoke during a tour of Northern Illinois University and called a college degree a prerequisite for students to get jobs that pay well. She says a college-educated workforce also will help Illinois attract high-wage, high-skill jobs.

The College Board estimated costs at public and private universities nationwide rose more than 4% this school year. The cost of community college increased more than 5%.

Simon says lawmakers should make the tuition tax credit known as the American Opportunity Tax Credit permanent. It's scheduled to expire at the end of the year.

She also says state Monetary Award Program grants should be awarded based on financial need, rather than on a first-come, first-served basis.

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Media Tour Offered Of State Prison in Vienna

Members of Illinois media organizations have been invited to tour the Vienna Correctional Center in southern Illinois.

The Illinois Department of Corrections sent the invitation Friday. It comes as Gov. Pat Quinn appeared to be backing away from his position that media visits to Illinois prisons are a security risk. The Vienna tour is Nov. 30. Prison officials have said the tours will consider the safety and security of staff, inmates and visitors.

The Associated Press and other news media outlets have been denied tour requests as Quinn tries to close two prisons to save money despite historic overcrowding of the state's prisons.

Despite making assertions about security, the department recently allowed a group of criminal justice students from Heartland Community College in Normal to tour the prison in Pontiac.

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Appeals Court Ruling Keeps Prison Open For Now

Gov. Pat Quinn can't proceed with plans to close prisons - at least for now.

A state appeals court has denied his administration's request to dissolve a temporary restraining order that prevented him from closing prisons in Tamms and Dwight, three halfway houses and juvenile detention centers in Joliet and Murphysboro.

The Fifth District Appellate Court entered its order on Wednesday, and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees received it on Friday.

An Alexander County judge issued the TRO after AFSCME filed grievances claiming the state was required to bargain over the impact of the closures. It also claimed transferring inmates to other prisons would threaten workers' health and safety.

An arbitrator later ruled in the state's favor. But the union believes that the reasoning was wrong.

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Inspector Says Hiring Law Broken at Ill. State Agency

An Illinois investigator found workers at an agency under Gov. Pat Quinn violated hiring laws by helping an employee's husband get hired, evading "blind" interview rules and granting improper pay increases.

The Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity told the executive inspector general in a report released Friday that two employees completed counseling - one no longer works at the agency and another resigned to avoid getting fired.

The report also determined DCEO was negligent in failing to have policies to ensure appointees meet minimum qualifications.

The investigation singled out three human resources administrators for violations beginning in late 2009. Those violations included improperly reviewing job candidate names, reappointing candidates to "emergency" posts, giving improper pay increases and for one manager's inappropriate intervention in hiring her husband.

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Health Department Has Food Safety Tips For Turkey

Thanksgiving is less than a week away, so it's a good time to remember food safety.

That's the message from the Illinois Department of Public Health, which has some tips for people planning to roast a turkey.

Fresh or frozen? If you choose fresh turkey, buy it no more than two days ahead, and be sure you have room in the refrigerator.

Frozen turkeys should be thawed in the refrigerator, not on the kitchen counter. Allow about 24 hours per five pounds of turkey. A 15-pound turkey could take three full days to thaw in the refrigerator.

Calculate cooking time carefully and use a meat thermometer. Turkey is safe to eat when it reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit.

More food safety tips are on the health department's website.

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Lawmakers Seek Medical Society Nod On Doctor Fees

Key state lawmakers say they hope the Illinois State Medical Society can reach an agreement on licensing fees with the department that regulates doctors.

A spokeswoman for the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation says layoffs will begin in January if the Legislature doesn't act to increase the fees doctors pay to be licensed. The layoffs would slow down investigations into complaints about doctors.

Illinois Rep. Michael Zalewski, a Riverside Democrat, has been working with the medical society and the department. He says doctors oppose the fee increase because they fear lawmakers will raid the money to cover other expenses.

Sen. Heather Steans, a Chicago Democrat, says she hopes layoffs can be avoided and the medical society and the department can reach an agreement.

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Gov. Quinn Interested In Refinancing For Overdue Bills

Pat Quinn's budget director says the governor wants to work with lawmakers on a refinancing plan to pay down some of the state's $8 billion in overdue bills.

Jerry Stermer told the House Revenue and Finance Committee Thursday that Quinn in the coming weeks will present lawmakers with a proposal for refinancing some of that debt.

The governor's office later suggested Stermer overstated the progress and said there was no new plan in the works. Quinn's office says the governor is interested in working with the General Assembly on the issue.

As part of its massive budget quandary, Illinois has been months late on bills, forcing many nonprofit agencies that do work for the state to fire staff, borrow money and delay paying salaries.

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Exelon To Pay $400-Thousand For Constellation Violation

Exelon Corp. will pay $400,000 for inadvertent power trading violations during its takeover of Constellation Energy Group Inc.

The Justice Department announced the settlement Thursday. A federal judge in Washington will have to approve it before it's final.

Exelon was required to sell three Maryland power plants to settle antitrust concerns about the $7.9 billion Constellation deal. The Justice Department says before the plants were sold, Exelon agreed to sell their power at or below cost to ensure Exelon wouldn't be able to raise electricity rates. The Justice Department says Exelon sold power above cost, but that once it realized the sales had been made, the company notified regulators and returned the profits.

Exelon accepts responsibility for the error and adds it had little impact on the market or customers.

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Economic Index Jumps In West, Midwest

An index of economic conditions in 10 Midwest and Western states has jumped for a third straight month, but the looming "fiscal cliff" and other factors have shaken confidence in the region's economy for the coming months.

The overall Rural Mainstreet index released Thursday rose to 57.5 in November from October's 56.6.

Any score above 50 on the 100-point scale suggests a growing economy.

The survey of bankers covers rural areas of Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming.

The confidence index, which reflects expectations for the economy six months out, sank to 45.6 from October's 50.7.

Creighton University economist Ernie Goss attributes the lack of confidence to the looming "fiscal cliff," and the lack of a federal farm and energy bills.

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Drought Forces Midwest Firm To Ponder Drier Future

The Midwest has always provided access to cheap, plentiful water.

But this year's drought is forcing some companies in the heartland to face a future in which that won't be the case.

Agribusiness giant Archer Daniels Midland in Decatur, Ill., watched uneasily at the height of this year's drought as the water level in the lake that supplies its headquarters dropped uncomfortably low.

By August, the city was ready to tell the company to cut back on water use for the first time in its history.

Such orders can result in lower production and lost jobs.

Rain eventually solved the problem. But ADM says it's learned hard lessons about conservation, and Decatur is looking for ways to get more water. The city says the problem is every alternative is expensive.

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Illinois Firearm Hunting Season Begins Today

THE FIREARM DEER HUNTING SEASON BEGINS TODAY IN ILLINOIS.

STATE DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES SPOKESPERSON CHRIS MCCLOUD SAYS THIS IS THE MOST POPULAR HUNTING SEASON.

[audio:firearm1.mp3] [/audio]

HUNTERS WHO TAKE A DEER IN ONE OF 10 DESIGNATED COUNTIES MUST REGISTER THEIR HARVEST AT CHECK STATIONS WHERE BIOLOGISTS WILL TAKE SAMPLES FOR C-W-D TESTING.

[audio:firearm2.mp3] [/audio]

MCCLOUD SAYS MORE THAN 330 THOUSAND PERMITS HAVE BEEN ISSUED FOR THE FIREARM SEASON. AGAIN, HUNTERS WHO TAKE A DEER MUST REGISTER THEIR HARVEST EITHER ONLINE THROUGH D-N-R’S WEBSITE…OR BY CALLING: 1-866-IL-CHECK.

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Maroa-Forsyth Schools Pleased With 2012 State Report Card

School report cards from the State of Illinois have been handed out to school districts and one district's leader is very pleased with his school's showing this year.

Maroa-Forsyth Schools saw a lot of good things on the State Report Cards this year, and Superintendent Mike Williams says the biggest thing that caught his eye this year was a 50% increase in test scores for their high school. He credits the teachers of the district for their hard work.

[audio:111612maroareportcard1.mp3] [/audio]

While Williams is pleased with their numbers this year, and rightfully so, he cautions district members, Board of Education members, and others to keep in mind, the figures of the State Report Card are based on one year's test of one group of students. While consistency of high numbers is the goal, Williams notes next year's numbers could be drastically different because it will be a new group of students.

[audio:111612maroareportcard2.mp3] [/audio]

Overall, Williams was pleased with Maroa-Forsyth Schools report cards for this year. One area of concern he had was in the grade school ISAT scores saw a small decrease in their reading scores. Williams notes it's not a major red flag to him because the cut score was increased, and going forward he feels, that is something they can adjust to, and start to see those scores go back up.

[audio:111612maroareportcard3.mp3] [/audio]

Because Maroa-Forsyth schools, as a district, did not make Adequate Yearly Progress for this year, they are in the early stages of having to make school and district improvements. Williams notes this is nothing surprising or new for them. He explains they are always evaluating their weaknesses and working to improving them. The only thing that will change is the way they report their changes.

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Clinton Public Works Department To Pick Up Brush Monday

The third Monday of each month, which would be this Monday, November 19, the City of Clinton's Public Works Department makes the rounds through the city picking up brush.

With the blustery and gusty conditions of fall here, some of those lose branches and twigs are probably hitting the ground. Public Works Director for the City of Clinton, Steve Lobb explains they break the city into five zones, like they do for leaf pick up, and they make their way through the city picking up brush piles residents leave out.

[audio:111912clintonbrush1.mp3] [/audio]

There are some things City crews cannot take. Lobb explains they can take brush off trees, twigs, things like that. He says garden items like flowers and plants are very hit and miss. He says they might be able to but it could require equipment they may not have. He says best way to know is if it comes off a tree or bush, it is considered brush.

[audio:111912clintonbrush2.mp3] [/audio]

Lobb recommends residents keep their trimming of trees and bushes to the fall and spring months. He says during the summer is not the best time to be trimming those. He also notes, the summer is their busiest time to be doing other projects, mainly street projects. To be spending two or three days the third week of the month takes away from their other projects they have.

[audio:111912clintonbrush3.mp3] [/audio]

Again, the Public Works Department makes their way out to the city streets of Clinton the third Monday of each month, all 12 months. Their next trip will be this Monday, November 19. Lobb says those items you want picked up should be out at the front of your home by 7am Monday morning.

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Cubs Sign Navarro

The Cubs have reportedly signed catcher Dioner Navarro to a one-year contract.  The Chicago Tribune reports the deal is worth 1.75-million-dollars.  Navarro hit .290 with two homers and 12 RBI in 24 games as a backup last season in Cincinnati.  He is a career .245 hitter with 41 homers and 209 RBI over nine big league seasons. 

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NASCAR Set For Finale At Homestead

A NASCAR champion will be crowned on Sunday evening in South Florida.  The season-finale at Homstead-Miami Speedway will take place with Brad Keselowski holding a 20-point lead over Jimmie Johnson.  Keselowski's sixth-place finish last Sunday at Phoenix vaulted him from seven points back of Johnson, into the lead.

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Cabrera, Posey Named MVPs

>>Giants' Posey Wins NL MVP Award

(New York, NY) -- San Francisco Giants catcher Buster Posey is the National League's Most Valuable Player. Posey led the majors with a .336 average to go with 24 home runs and 103 RBI as the Giants captured the NL West Division. Other NL finalists were outfielder and 2011 winner Ryan Braun of the Milwaukee Brewers, Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Andrew McCutchen, San Diego Padres third baseman Chase Headley and St. Louis Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina.

>>Tigers' Cabrera Wins AL MVP Award

(New York, NY) -- Detroit Tigers third baseman Miguel Cabrera is the American League's Most Valuable Player. Cabrera captured baseball's first Triple Crown since 1967 by leading the AL with a .330 average, 44 home runs and 139 RBI as Detroit won the AL Central Division. Los Angeles Angels outfielder Mike Trout finished second. Other finalists were outfielder Josh Hamilton and third baseman Adrian Beltre of the Texas Rangers and New York Yankees second baseman Robinson Cano.

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ISU Drops Drexel

>>ISU Tops Drexel In Overtime

Jackie Carmichael scored 21 points and Tyler Brown had 20 as Illinois State edged Drexel 86-84 in overtime in a nonconference game Thursday night.

Carmichael's two free throws tied it at 75 with 2 seconds left in regulation.

Drexel led by three early in the extra period before the Redbirds (2-0) scored seven consecutive points. Brown hit a tying 3-pointer, then another basket for an 81-79 lead.

The Dragons (0-2) then turned the ball over and Johnny Hill's layup put the Redbirds ahead by four.

Chris Fouch's 3-pointer with 6 seconds left brought Drexel within one, 85-84, but Hill added a free throw, and Frantz Massenat's running 3-point try for Drexel missed.

Drexel used a 12-1 second-half run to turn a 3-point deficit into an 8-point lead. However, a 3-pointer by Brown, followed by a 3-point play by Hill, got the Redbirds back into it at 71-69 with 5:06 left.

NCAA Basketball ("USA Today" Top-25 Poll)
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#1 Indiana Hoosiers 99, Sam Houston State Bearkats 45 (Legends Classic)
#2 Louisville Cardinals 80, Samford Bulldogs 54 (Battle 4 Atlantis)
#6 North Carolina State Wolfpack 72, Penn State Nittany Lions 55 (Puerto Rico Tip-Off)
#7 Kansas Jayhawks 69, Chattanooga Mocs 55
#12 Arizona Wildcats 72, UTEP Miners 51
#14 UCLA Bruins 100, James Madison Dukes 70 (Legends Classic)
#17 Baylor Bears 84, Boston College Eagles 74 (Charleston Classic)

NBA
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Brooklyn Nets 102, Boston Celtics 97
New York Knicks 104, San Antonio Spurs 100
Miami Heat 98, Denver Nuggets 93

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NFL Notes

>>Urlacher Says Again He'd Lie About Concussion

Chicago Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher still says he would lie to cover up a concussion.

With quarterback Jay Cutler recovering from a concussion, the Bears' defensive star wasn't backing off comments he made to HBO earlier this year.

He responded "yeah" when asked if he would try to cover up such an injury. He said he's not sure "how you can lie these days with all the (stuff) they have to see who's concussed and not."

He also said the NFL needs to do a better job protecting players' knees.

Head injuries and the long-term effects has been a hot-button issue in sports, particularly in the NFL, and it's been a big topic in Chicago this week. It's not clear if Cutler will play Monday against San Francisco.

>>Cutler Remains Sidelined With Concussion

Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler missed practice on Thursday and his playing status remains in question because of a concussion.

Coach Lovie Smith says Cutler continues to improve, but it's not clear if he'll be ready to play at San Francisco on Monday night.

If Cutler can't play, Jason Campbell will likely make the start.

The Bears believe Cutler was injured on a helmet-to-helmet hit from Houston's Tim Dobbins late in the second quarter of Sunday's loss. He finished the half, but missed the second half after showing symptoms in the locker room.

Cutler needs to be cleared by team physicians and independent neurological consultants before he can return.

The same goes for teammate Shea McClellin and 49ers quarterback Alex Smith, who also suffered concussions last week.

>>Packers' Matthews Won't Play Sunday

(Green Bay, WI) -- Green Bay Packers linebacker Clay Matthews is being ruled out for Sunday's game in Detroit due to a hamstring injury. Matthews was hurt in the third quarter of Green Bay's 31-17 win over Arizona in Week Nine. Wide receiver Greg Jennings is expected to remain sidelined as he continues to recover from groin surgery, while cornerback Charles Woodson will miss his third straight game with a fractured collarbone. Meanwhile, wide receiver Jordy Nelson appears on track to return from an ankle sprain that knocked him out of the team's November 4th win over the Cardinals.

>>Bears Face 49ers On "Monday Night Football"

(Chicago, IL) -- The Bears are gearing up for their huge "Monday Night Football" showdown with the 49ers in San Francisco. Chicago fell to 7-and-2 on the season following last week's 13-6 home loss to Houston. The Bears are just a half-game ahead of San Francisco for second place in the NFC.

>>Packers Look To Continue Dominance Over Lions

(Detroit, MI) -- NFC North rivals meet in Motown Sunday as the Green Bay Packers play the Detroit Lions at Ford Field. The Packers are coming off their bye week and are riding a four-game winning streak that has them at 6-and-3. This is the first of two straight road games for Green Bay, which has won 12 of the last 13 meetings against Detroit. The Lions are looking to get back to .500 again after dropping a 34-24 decision last Sunday at Minnesota. This is the first of three straight home games for Detroit, but they come against the Packers, Texans and Colts, who are a combined 20-and-7 thus far.

>>Jets, Rams Seek Elusive Fourth Win

(St. Louis, MO) -- A pair of three-win teams face off Sunday at the Edward Jones Dome as the New York Jets visit the St. Louis Rams. It's the second straight NFC West road game for Gang Green, which lost 28-7 at Seattle last Sunday. The Jets have dropped three straight and five of their last six games overall to slip to 3-and-6 on the season. The Rams are coming off a 24-24 tie at San Francisco this past weekend that has them at 3-5-and-1. St. Louis hasn't won since Week Five at home against the Cardinals. The Rams are 3-and-1 at the Dome this season, with their lone loss to the Packers.

>>Luck, Colts Play Brady, Pats

(Foxboro, MA) -- The Indianapolis Colts and New England Patriots meet this Sunday at Gillette Stadium. Both teams are 6-and-3 and in the thick of the AFC playoff race. Led by rookie quarterback Andrew Luck, the Colts have won four in-a-row and five of their last six games. Indy is 4-and-1 at home and 2-and-2 on the road. Veteran QB Tom Brady has New England leading the AFC East. The Pats have also won five-of-six, including three straight. Including the playoffs, this is the 13th meeting between the teams since Brady made his first NFL start against the Colts in 2001.

>>Bills Best Dolphins On "TNF"

(Orchard Park, NY) -- Leodis McKelvin returned a punt 79 yards to give the Bills an early 7-0 as they held off the Dolphins, 19-14. Rian Lindell hit four field goals for Buffalo, which is now 4-and-6 on the season. C.J. Spiller rushed for 91 yards and caught three balls for 39 yards in the win. Ryan Fitzpatrick threw for 168 yards for the Bills. Ryan Tannehill tossed for 141 yards, a score and a pair of interceptions for Miami, which dropped to 4-and-6. Davone Bess hauled in the touchdown grab for the Fins. Marcus Thigpen returned a kickoff 96 yards to the house in the first quarter.

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IHSA Playoffs Semi-Finals Preview

The semi-final round of the IHSA football playoffs is here and a few local teams are still playing and looking for a shot at Champaign.

In Class 1A
Concord Triopia (11-1) vs. Maroa-Forsyth (11-1) Sat., Nov. 17, 1:30 pm

Class 3A
Greenville (11-1) at Tolono Unity (11-1) Sat., Nov. 17, 1:00 pm

Class 4A
Harrisburg (11-1) at Rochester (11-1) Sat., Nov. 17, 3:00 pm

Class 5A
Springfield Sacred Heart-Griffin (11-1) at Morris (11-1) Sat., Nov. 17, 3:00 pm

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Lady Maroons Top Williamsville

CLINTON (3-1)       57
WILLIAMSVILLE    48
 
SCORING BY QUARTER:
CLINTON               14     8     20     15
WILLIAMSVILLE    11    14    10     13
 
CLINTON SCORING:
ENNIS 0-1-1, GINGER 2-3-8, HICKMAN 6-0-12,
TOOL 3-0-7, TOOHILL 5-2-15, SCOTT 1-1-4, BIEBER 3-4-10
TOTALS 20-11-56
 
WILLIAMSVILLE SCORING:
STOECKER 8-1-18,  MCCAIN 1-0-2, FRENCH 3-0-6, O'CONNER 2-0-4,
BURTON 3-0-6, CAPRANICA 5-1-11, F. ABU-TAYEH 0-1-1
TOTALS 22-3-48
 
THREE POINT BASKETS:
CLINTON  6 (TOOHILL 3, GINGER 1, TOOL 1, SCOTT 1)
WILLIAMSVILLE 1 (STOECKER)
 
"I felt like our kids made a statement in the third quarter. After trailing by 3 at the half, they took a 9 point lead about 3 minutes into the 3rd. The difference in their energy allowed us to regain control of a close game." Coach Josh Williams said after the game.

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Clinton Police Report for 11-17

CITATIONS

11/15/12

MICHELLE E. DYER 30, CLINTON SPEEDING 55 MPH IN A 35 MPH ZONE. BOND POSTED

LAURA A. JUVINALL 33, DECATUR SPEEDING 77 MPH IN A 55 MPH ZONE. BOND POSTED

BRANDY L. HUNT 40, MAROA SPEEDING 42 MH IN A 30 MPH ZONE. NOTICE TO APPEAR ISSUED

 

ON 11/15/12 CLINTON POLICE INVESTIGATED A PERSONAL INJURY ACCIDENT AT RT 51 & RT 54. A VEHICLE DRIVEN BY BRIANNA S. BJERKE 27, DECATUR WAS NORTHBOUND ON RT 51. A VEHICLE DRIVEN BY DOROTHY M LYON 85, DECATUR WAS SOUTHBOUND ON 51 AND WAS IN THE TURN LANE TO TURN EASTBOUND ON RT 54 AND TURNED INTO THE PATH OF BJERKE. LYON WAS ISSUED A CITATION FOR DISOBEYING TRAFFIC CONTROL DEVICE. LYON WAS TRANSPORTED BY CLINTON AMBULANCE FOR TREATMENT.

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Warner Library Hosts Pirate

The children of the Warner Library were treated to a special presentation Thursday afternoon by Paul The Lonely Pirate. Children's Librarian at the Warner Library, Paula Lopatik explains Pirate Paul covers a lot of history of pirates and does in a fun way that gets the kids involved.

[audio:pirate.mp3] [/audio]

Below: Pirate Lonely Paul selects kids to teach how to be a pirate.

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Hunters Advised To Check Hunting Stands Prior To Hunting

As hunters head out for the opening of the fire arm season in Illinois, authorities are seeing some concerning trends.

One trend in particular is hunters falling out of their tree stands. Department of Natural Resources Conservation Police Officer, Ray Wichus says already this year they've seen two hunters have an accident. He explains it is best if you have checked your equipment before you go out and hunt, but if you have not, the best thing to do is check out your ropes, chains, and tree stand wood before you get too comfortable.

[audio:111712treestand1.mp3] [/audio]

To this point, the accidents they know about have been to tree stands that are purchased. Wichus explains though, most tree stands get left up all year, making it even more important that hunters get out before they set up for the day, and check out their equipment.

[audio:111712treestand2.mp3] [/audio]

Wichus says most parts for your tree stand are pretty prevelent in sporting goods stores. He advises hunters to take time and check out your stand, even though it may scare away a few deer. He feels it is better to do that than get in a hurry and put yourself in harms way to a faulty ropes, hooks, and steps.

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Illinois Residents Signing Up For 'US Shakeout'

More than 86,000 Illinois residents will seek shelter under office desks and kitchen tables on Feb. 7 as part of the "Great Central U.S. Shakeout" earthquake drill.

The Illinois Emergency Management Agency said Wednesday that more people are welcome to register for the third-annual multistate drill.

Agency Director Jonathon Monken (MUHN'-kin) says the drills help people understand the risk of earthquakes in the Midwest and "what people can do to protect themselves when the earth starts to shake."

The most powerful earthquakes ever in the U.S. happened 200 years ago along the New Madrid Seismic Zone, which reaches into southern Illinois.

The agency is encouraging schools, businesses, government offices and families to register online.

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Car Shoppers Be On The Lookout For Flooded Cars

If you're in the market for a used car, be on the lookout for water damage. Secretary of State Jesse White says shoppers should double check and make sure the car they're interested in wasn't flooded out during Hurricane Sandy.

[audio:rddFlood1.mp3] [/audio]

White says his office will screen title applications from states impacted by the hurricane. Consumers can also check the car history by going to the National Insurance Crime Bureau website. White says reports indicate as many as 250-thousand vehicles may be affected by the flood waters.

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Amtrak Prepared For Beefed Up Holiday Travel

Amtrak is beefing up service in order to accommodate holiday travelers.  They're using every passenger rail car in the fleet, adding trains and adjusting schedules as passengers travel through the Chicago hub.  Officials say the busiest travel days will be next  Tuesday and Wednesday as travelers head out to spend Thanksgiving with friends and family.  Those who plan to travel but haven't yet purchased a ticket should consider traveling the Monday before Thanksgiving and the Friday or Monday after Thanksgiving.  That will give them more travel and pricing options.  Officials say travelers should be prepared for large crowds and they should arrive at the train station at least 45 minutes early. 

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Illinois Foreclosure Rate Rises 6%

Illinois' home foreclosure rate rose 6% in October compared to the previous month, and was 19% higher than in October of last year.

A report released Thursday by Irvine, Calif.-based RealtyTrac shows Illinois with 14,899 foreclosure filings in October. That represents one in every 356 housing units - the third-highest rate in the nation.

Filings include default notices, auction-sale notices and bank repossessions.

Florida had the nation's highest October foreclosure rate - one in every 312 housing units - followed by Nevada, with one in every 352 housing units. Also in the top five were Arizona and California.

Nationally, October's foreclosure activity rose 3% from last month but fell 19% from October of 2011.

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Civic Committee Says Illinois Pension System 'Unfixable'

A business group says the Illinois pension system is "unfixable" and that even current retirees' benefits will have to be cut to keep it from bankruptcy.

The Civic Committee of the Commercial Club of Chicago told members Wednesday in a memo -- shown to The Associated Press in advance -- that keeping the state's five pension systems from collapsing will require drastic action.

That includes eliminating annual cost-of-living increases, capping the salaries that pensions are based on and more.

Committee president Tyrone Fahner (FAYN'-er) told the AP that current state employees and teachers will never see the benefits promised them. The systems are underfunded by at least $85 billion.

The committee hopes to light a fire under a stalemated Legislature. Fahner says lawmakers' ideas for reducing benefits are "half measures."

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Cross, Quinn Agree On Urgency Of Pension Reform

House Minority Leader Tom Cross says it's time to stop talking about pension reform and actually do something about it.

[audio:rddPension2.mp3] [/audio]

Governor Quinn says if lawmakers don't deal with pension reform, the pension payments will squeeze out everything the state wants to invest in in the coming years.

[audio:rddPension3.mp3] [/audio]

The state has an 85-billion-dollar unfunded liability within its pension systems. Lawmakers have considered several options in rescuing the pension systems, including a cost shift proposal, which is quite unpopular with downstate lawmakers. They argue it'll put more burden on schools in their areas. The legislature met in August with the hopes of getting the job done but actually walked away with no deal. They're looking at passing a reform package before January 9th.

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Central Illinois Lawmaker Resigns From State House

 width=A Republican state lawmaker from central Illinois is stepping down after more than a decade in office.

State Rep. Jim Watson will resign to become executive director of the Illinois Petroleum Council.

Watson was first elected to the state House in 2001.

He says his decision to resign was a difficult one, and that it had been an honor to serve the people of his district.

Watson's resignation will take effect at 11:59 p.m. on Dec. 3.

The district includes Morgan, Calhoun, Greene, Jersey, Macoupin, Madison and Pike counties.

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Four Arrested After Synthetic Marijuana, $1-Million Seized

Bloomington police say four people were arrested after investigators seized a large amount of synthetic marijuana and about $1 million from three tobacco stores.

48-year-old Ghassan Qahwaji, 39-year-old Ghiath Qahwaji, 35-year-old Hani Al-Maghayred and 32-year-old Hicham Rharabi were arrested Wednesday and charged with delivery of a controlled substance.

The arrests came after a more-than-six-month investigation by the Bloomington and Champaign police departments. Police say undercover officers were able to buy synthetic marijuana at two Global Tobacco stores in Bloomington and one in Champaign.

Police say they found large quantities of drugs packaged for sale and $1 million cash during searches of the stores and suspects' homes.

A Bloomington police spokesman says the drugs were being sold over the counter, with some in display cases.

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Library Home To Temporary Civil War Exhibit

Civil War history buffs will enjoy a new exhibit at the Warner Library.

 width=The Lincoln Heritage Committee of DeWitt County was able to help secure the first of a small, traveling exhibit on weapons and medicine during the Civil War. Librarian at the Warner Library, Bobbi Perryman explains the exhibit comes from the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library in Springfield, and is actually smaller exhibit from one they had there.

[audio:111512libraryexhibit1.mp3] [/audio]

Along with the exhibit they received, Perryman explains they have enhanced the display to recognize several local soldiers. She notes their enhancements are rooted from a display they had a few years ago about soldiers from DeWitt County in the Civil War.

[audio:111512libraryexhibit2.mp3] [/audio]

Along with the travel displays the library is able to secure, there are some permanent artifacts and photographs that can be viewed any time at the library. Perryman says the library is home to a journal of a Civil War veteran that was donated by the soldier's family. They also have some shells for World War II.

[audio:111512libraryexhibit3.mp3] [/audio]

The exhibit is located on the main floor of the library and is on display until November 29.

You can see the exhibit at the Library, located at 310 North Quincy Street.

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DeWitt County Angel Tree Seeking Children To Be Adopted For 2012 Holiday Season

 width=With the Christmas season right around the corner, one local organization is once again aiming to provide for the youth of the community.

Once again this year, the Angel Tree Program of DeWitt County is aiming to provide Christmas presents for the youth of the community who otherwise may not be fortunate enough to receive gifts this Christmas. Sue Calvert is the Director of the Angel Tree program, she explains each year they help around 500 kids, and all the donations they receive go back into the community.

[audio:111512angeltree1.mp3] [/audio]

People who want to enroll their children in the Angel Tree program have to meet several criteria. Calvert explains they must submit a copy of their income, only the past 30 days, they must submit their Social Security cards and any other forms of money they would receive, such as child support and foster care checks. Calvert encourages anyone who may think they do not meet the criteria to apply because if they do not there is a good possibility they could connect them to other programs that provide assistance this time of the year.

[audio:111512angeltree2.mp3] [/audio]

Along with the many individuals that will "adopt" a child for Christmas, Calvert explains several community groups will get involved and adopt a child or two and buy them Christmas gifts. She feels especially when younger kids get involved, it makes for a great community effort.

[audio:111512angeltree3.mp3] [/audio]

There is still time to adopt a child for the Angel Tree program this year. Gifts must be submitted by December the 3rd, and they will be distributed December 7. Calvert says there are several churches and businesses that Christmas lists can be obtained from. The churches include St. Patrick's in Wapella, Clinton Christian Church, St. John's Catholic, First United Methodist Church, and the Clinton Presbyterian Church. The businesses include the State Bank of Lincoln in Clinton, Farmer City State Bank, and First National Bank.

Calvert says you can take those donations to the First National Bank for Clinton residents, and the Farmer City State Bank is handling the Farmer City donations.

For more information you can contact Sue Calvert at suecalvert13@gmail.com or you can visit them on Facebook at DeWitt County Samaritan Room/Angel Tree.

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NFL Notes: Cutler Status Unknown; Two Rams Return To Practice

 width=>>Cutler Status Unknown

(Chicago, IL) -- With the Bears not practicing on Wednesday, there was no update on the status of quarterback Jay Cutler. Cutler suffered a concussion on Sunday night against the Houston Texans. The Bears take on the 49ers on Monday night.

>>Givens And Jenkins Return To Practice

(St. Louis, MO) -- Rams wide receiver Chris Givens and cornerback Janoris Jenkins returned to practice on Wednesday. Both players did not play against the 49ers on Sunday for violating team rules. Head coach Jeff Fisher said both would play this Sunday against the Jets, but did not reveal if they would start.

>>Dolphins, Bills Looking To Snap Skids

(Orchard Park, NY) -- The AFC East takes center stage in this week's Thursday night NFL matchup as the Miami Dolphins go up against the Buffalo Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium. The Dolphins are looking to snap a two-game losing streak after back-to-back losses to the Colts and Titans. Miami had won three straight before that and is 4-and-5 overall. The Bills come in having lost three straight and five of their last six to fall to 3-and-6 on the season. Running back Fred Jackson will not play against Miami after suffering a concussion late in the team's 36-31 loss at New England this past Sunday.

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Price, Dickey Cy Young Winners

>>Rays' Price Wins AL Cy Young Award

(New York, NY) -- Tampa Bay Rays pitcher David Price is the Cy Young Award winner in the American League. The left-hander captured his first Cy Young in a vote of the Baseball Writers' Association of America. Price went 20-and-5 with an AL-leading 2.56 ERA to beat out 2011 winner Justin Verlander of the Detroit Tigers and Jered Weaver of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.

>>Mets' Dickey Wins NL Cy Young Award

(New York, NY) -- New York Mets pitcher R.A. Dickey is the National League Cy Young Award winner. He's the first knuckleballer to win as voted on by the Baseball Writers' Association of America. Dickey went 20-and-6 with a 2.73 ERA and a league-leading 230 strikeouts. Gio Gonzalez of the Washington Nationals and 2011 winner Clayton Kershaw of the L.A. Dodgers were the other finalists.

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Bulls Hold Off Suns In OT

 width=Carlos Boozer posted 28 points and 14 rebounds as the Bulls defeated the Suns 112-106 in overtime. Joakim Noah had 21 points, 12 rebounds and five assists for Chicago, which bounced back from a loss to Boston on Monday. Luis Scola scored 24 points and grabbed 14 boards before fouling out, while Sebastian Telfair chipped in 17 points off the bench. Phoenix has dropped two of its last three games.

NBA
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Detroit Pistons 94, Philadelphia 76ers 76
Boston Celtics 98, Utah Jazz 93
Milwaukee Bucks 99, Indiana Pacers 85
Houston Rockets 100, New Orleans Hornets 96
Memphis Grizzlies 107, Oklahoma City Thunder 97
Charlotte Bobcats 89, Minnesota Timberwolves 87
Dallas Mavericks 107, Washington Wizards 101
Golden State Warriors 92, Atlanta Hawks 88
Los Angeles Clippers 107, Miami Heat 100

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College Basketball Notes: Illinois In Hawaii; National Signing Day

 width=>>Illini In Hawaii But Focused On Basketball

Illinois coach John Groce says he wants his players to enjoy their road trip to Hawaii but says the Illini have more important things on their agenda than the beach.

Groce told reporters Wednesday on a teleconference from Hawaii that the team has more than basketball planned, including a trip to Pearl Harbor.

But the Illini (1-1) also have four games starting Friday night at Hawaii.

That will be followed by three games in the EA Sports Maui Invitational starting with Monday night's opener against USC.

Groce joked that he has no problem with distractions such as Hawaii's sights. The bald, fair-skinned coach says that any trip to the beach for him would require sunscreen with an SPF rating of 75.

>>SMU Signs Two Chicago Prep Stars; Top JUCO Forward

 width=SMU coach Larry Brown has signed three players to national letters of intent to be part of the Mustangs' debut in the Big East Conference next season.

The signing class Wednesday included a pair of standout high school players from the Chicago area, 6-foot-4 guard Sterling Brown and 6-8 forward Ben Moore, along with 6-11 junior college forward Yanick Moreira.

Brown, the Hall of Fame coach in his first season at SMU, says the three players are high-character kids from winning programs that are athletic and can play multiple positions.

Along with the three signees, the Mustangs have three transfers who are sitting out this season.

Sterling Brown is the younger brother of Phoenix Suns guard Shannon Brown, who was coached by Larry Brown in Charlotte.

Brown's Assistant Coach, Jerrance Howard, was an Assistant at Illinois during Bruce Weber's tenure. Howard is credited with recruiting many of Illinois' Chicago talents.

>>Illinois Adds 5 On National Signing Day

Wednesday was National Signing Day for NCAA basketball, and the University of Illinois and first year head coach John Groce made five signings. They include:

6-9 forward Austin Colbertout of Gill St. Bernard's High School in Gladstone, N.J.

6-5 guard Malcolm Hill from Belleville East High School in Belleville, Ill.

Illinois added depth in the backcourt by signing 6-10 center Maverick Morgan out of Springboro High School in Springboro, Ohio.

Coach Groce runs a guard oriented offencse, and has added two guards from the two time defending IHSA Class 4A State Champion Chicago Simeon Career Academy. They are 6-3 guard Kendrick Nunn and 6-2 guard Jaylon Tate..

NCAA Basketball ("USA Today" Top-25 Poll)
------
#10 Florida Gators 74, #20 Wisconsin Badgers 56
#13 Creighton Bluejays 77, UAB Blazers 60

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Clinton Farmer's Market Enjoys Successful 2012 Despite Drought

Despite a drought stricken summer in Central Illinois, the Clinton Farmer's Market had a successful 2012 year.

Many local produce growers struggled to keep their plants healthy in a sweltering and dry summer, but those that were able to and sold produce at the Clinton Farmer's Market had a lot of success. Elizabeth Burns with the Clinton Area Farmer's and Artisan's Market says even though there was limited choices for those that frequent the market, this summer they continued to see good crowds showing up on Saturday mornings.

[audio:111612marketrecap1.mp3] [/audio]

As things have already wrapped up for the 2012 year, Farmer's Market organizers are looking ahead and planning for 2013. Burns explains they are working on getting everything in place for the EBT machines they will have next year, which will be made possible thanks to a grant through the USDA. They are also looking forward to having goat's milk soap for next year, an item that has been missing the past several years.

[audio:111612marketrecap2.mp3] [/audio]

Looking ahead to 2013, Burns explains she would like to see some local musicians and bands come and be a part of their Saturday morning markets. Periodically throughout the year, local bands and artists will set up on the stage on Mr. Lincoln Square, and Burns would like to see more of them do that.

[audio:111612marketrecap3.mp3] [/audio]

Burns encourages those bands or entertainers who would like to come and perform at the Saturday markets to get a hold of her, she can give more details. She also encourages recommendations of entertainment as well.

To get more details about being a vendor at next year's market, entertaining next year, or any other details, you can contact Elizabeth Burns at 217-722-2496.

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Lady Maroons Dominate Springfield Calvary

The Clinton Lady Maroons Basketball team improved to 2-0 on Tuesday, with their second win in as many nights. The Maroons downed Springfield Calvary 56-18 in Springfield. The Lady Maroons were led by Morgan Hickman's 18 points and Hailey Toohill's ten.

The lady Maroons held Calvary to single digit scoring quarters the entire game and let 32-6 at halftime.

CLINTON   (2-0)   56
CALVARY (0-2)   18

SCORING BY QUARTER:
CLINTON     16     16    12     12
CALVARY    5       1      6       6
 
CLINTON SCORING:
HOUSTON 2-1-7, GINGER 3-1-8, NEWBERRY 0-1-1,
HICKMAN 9-0-18, TOOL 2-0-4, TOOHILL 4-0-10, SCOTT 2-0-4, BIEBER 2-0-4
TOTALS 24-3-56
 
CALVARY SCORING:
RICE 1-0-2, STONER 0-1-1, SCHMITT 3-1-7, SCHUBERT 2-0-4
NORMAN 1-1-4
TOTALS 7-3-18

THREE POINT BASKETS:
CLINTON  5 (HOUSTON 2, TOOHILL 2, GINGER 1)
CALVARY 1 (NORMAN 1)

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Today Is World Diabetes Day

Today is World Diabetes Day, an effort designed to bring attention to the seventh deadliest disease in the United States.  Diabetes is a chronic disease in which a person's body doesn't produce or properly process sugar.  Left untreated, diabetes can lead to heart disease, stroke, blindness, and a number of life-threatening medical complications.  Dr. Michael Jakoby, associate professor at the SIU School of Medicine in Springfield, says more young people are being diagnosed with Type Two diabetes.  The good news though, is a healthy diet and moderate exercise will help control or even prevent the disease. 

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Firearm Deer Hunting Begins This Weekend

The first weekend of firearm deer hunting is this weekend in Illinois. Tim Schweizer with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources has a few reminders about tree stand safety.

[audio:rddDeer1.mp3] [/audio]

Schweizer reminds hunters to be safe out there.

[audio:rddDeer2.mp3] [/audio]

Hunters can go out this Friday through Sunday and again the weekend of November 29th through December 2nd. Last year, 97-thousand 820 deer were harvested during the two weekends.

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Quinn: My Focus Is On Pension Reform

Republican lawmakers in Illinois worry Democrats will try to make permanent a tax hike that passed last year and is supposed to expire at the end of 2014. Governor Quinn refutes that idea, claiming there are bigger issues to deal with.

[audio:rddPension1.mp3] [/audio]

The extra cash from the tax increase was supposed to go toward paying down the state's backlog of unpaid bills but Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka has said that hasn't been the case. She says lawmakers have used much of the extra cash to fund other services in the budget. The state had a six-billion dollar backlog when the tax hike passed and today, that backlog sits at over eight-billion dollars.

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DeWitt County Tax Payers Association Filing Tax Lawsuit

The DeWitt County Tax Payers Association, for the third consecutive year is protesting an alleged illegal real estate tax being levied by the DeWitt County Board.

The Association is managing a tax protest and is filing a tax protest lawsuit for all taxpayers who choose to participate. President of the Association, Bill Spencer explains their first effort was successful, and moneys from illegal tax levies were returned to the tax payers. Spencer says that sparked an interest from the tax payers, and now they have learned the County is taxing and not spending that money.

[audio:111412taxprotest1.mp3] [/audio]

The protest of last year's levies is due in court next week. Spencer says their case looks promising because the Power Plant had a similar lawsuit and were able to settle their case.

[audio:111412taxprotest2.mp3] [/audio]

Tax payers wishing to be a part of the tax protest are encouraged to join the cause. Spencer explains unless a landowner owns a large piece of real estate and pays a large amount of property taxes, it is normal for a person to join forces in a tax protest with a group.

[audio:111412taxprotest3.mp3] [/audio]

Spencer feels there are several benefits to the taxpayers to be a part of this cause. He explains a successful suit could result in a lower tax rate, and it could be a result of almost $4-thousand per household.

[audio:111412taxprotest4.mp3] [/audio]

Spencer feels the recent election, where six new board members will be seated on the County Board is the voters way of voting in more fiscally responsible Board members.

Taxpayers wishing to participate in the tax protest are asked to confirm by Saturday November 17 at 5pm. You can sign up in person at the DeWitt County Constitution building on Washington Street in Clinton. For further details, you can also call 309-830-9750.

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November Books, DVD New Releases Available At Warner Library

The month of November sees a lot of new books and movies being released that are highly anticipated.

The Warner Public Library reminds bookworms and movie fanatics they try to have the most popular new releases. Children's Librarian, Paula Lopatik says she has a few new releases they are excited about for the kids. The latest "Diary of a Whimpy Kid" book was released this week. Lopatik adds, for comic book nuts or those older folks that remember the old comics, she recently was able to acquire Volumes 1 and 2 of the old 'Dick Tracy' comics.

[audio:111412novembernew1.mp3] [/audio]

For those adults who enjoy a good book, John Grisham has come out with a new novel, 'The Racketeer' which can be picked up at the library. Adult Services Librarian, Bobbi Perryman says there are many other titles along with the new John Grisham novel that can be borrowed as well. Along the same lines as the comic strip, 'Dick Tracy', Perryman adds they also received the complete 'Far Side' comic.

[audio:111412novembernew2.mp3] [/audio]

Other books readers might find interesting include a new book about England's Royal Couple, William and Kate, a new book about Tim Tebow, and some simple holiday decorating and cooking books. Perryman notes the library also has "The Amazing Spiderman" DVD and will also be getting the movies "Brave" and "The Expendibles 2" when they come out.

To find out what else the library has, you can contact them at 935-5174, or stop in to the library at 310 North Quincy Street. If you cannot find a title you are looking for, their staff can help you find it or get it for you from another library free of charge.

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College Basketball Notes

>>Top Recruit Parker To Wait To Sign

Top high school recruit Jabari Parker won't be signing his letter of intent when the early period begins on Wednesday.

Lola Parker says her son is "not signing." She says he'll probably commit to a school in December and make it official in the spring.

Jabari Parker, who plays for Chicago's Simeon Career Academy, has made official visits to Michigan State, Duke and Florida.

A trip to Stanford scheduled for earlier this month likely will happen in early December, instead, because he's been going for therapy on his right foot four days a week. He's also scheduled to visit Brigham Young over Thanksgiving weekend.

Lola Parker says her son hasn't ruled out any of those five schools. The early signing period runs through Nov. 21.

>>Big East Conference Announces New Divisions

(Chicago, IL) -- The Big East Conference is announcing a new division alignment for the 2013 and 2014 football seasons. Central Florida, Cincinnati, Connecticut, Louisville, Rutgers and South Florida make up the East Division. Boise State, Houston, Memphis, San Diego State, SMU and Temple are in the West Division. A Big East Championship Game will now be played between the top team from each division. Big East commissioner Mike Aresco said the new alignment will likely be revisited after 2014, when Navy and possibly other schools begin play in the Big East.

NCAA Basketball ("USA Today" Top-25 Poll)
------
#9 Duke Blue Devils 75, #3 Kentucky Wildcats 68 (at Atlanta, GA)
#5 Michigan Wolverines 77, Cleveland State Vikings 47
#22 Michigan State Spartans 67, #7 Kansas Jayhawks 64 (at Atlanta, GA)
#14 UCLA Bruins 80, UC Irvine Anteaters 79 (OT)
#15 Missouri Tigers 91, Alcorn State Braves 54
#23 San Diego State Aztecs 91, San Diego Christian Hawks 57
#24 Cincinnati Bearcats 102, Mississippi Valley State Delta Devils 60

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MLB Manager of the Year Awards Handed Out; Blockbuster Trade On Horizon

>>Nationals' Johnson Wins NL Managerial Honors

(New York, NY) -- Davey Johnson of the Washington Nationals is the National League Manager of the Year. Johnson won in a vote of the Baseball Writers' Association of America. He led the Nationals to the majors' best record this season at 98-and-64 and the NL East title. The 69-year-old beat out Dusty Baker of the Cincinnati Reds and Bruce Bochy [[ BO-chee ]] of the San Francisco Giants.

>>A's Melvin Wins AL Managerial Honors

(New York, NY) -- Bob Melvin of the Oakland Athletics is the American League Manager of the Year. He won the honor in a vote of the Baseball Writers' Association of America. The 51-year-old guided the A's to a 94-and-68 record, capturing the AL West title on the final day of the regular season. Melvin beat out the Baltimore Orioles' Buck Showalter and Robin Ventura of the Chicago White Sox.

>>Blue Jays Swing Mega-Deal With Marlins

(Undated) -- The Toronto Blue Jays and Miami Marlins are on the verge of a blockbuster trade. Multiple outlets are reporting Miami will send shortstop Jose Reyes and pitchers Mark Buehrle and Josh Johnson to Toronto. The Jays also get catcher John Buck and utilityman Emilio Bonifacio in the deal. Miami will receive shortstops Yunel Escobar and Adeiny Hechavarria, and pitchers Henderson Alvarez and Justin Nicolino. The Fish are also expected to acquire two top prospects. Major League Baseball is expected to explore the amount of money and contracts being exchanged before signing off on the deal, which could be finalized this morning.

>>Cardinals Release McClellan

(St. Louis, MO) -- The Cardinals have released reliever Kyle McClellan. The right-hander made 244 relief appearances since 2008 and has a career 3.69 ERA. St. Louis also signed catcher Rob Johnson to a minor league deal. The 30-year-old split time between the Mets and their Triple-A team in Buffalo last season.

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Bulls At Phoenix Tonight

The Bulls are in Phoenix tonight to take on the Suns. Chicago fell to Boston on Monday evening to drop to 4-and-3 on the young season. Tonight's game is the first of a five-game road trip for the Bulls which sends them to Los Angeles, Portland, Houston and Milwaukee after today.

NBA
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Charlotte Bobcats 92, Washington Wizards 76
New York Knicks 99, Orlando Magic 89
Toronto Raptors 74, Indiana Pacers 72
Brooklyn Nets 114, Cleveland Cavaliers 101
Portland Trail Blazers 103, Sacramento Kings 86
San Antonio Spurs 84, Los Angeles Lakers 82

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Bears Notes

>>Bears Sign QB McCown

The Chicago Bears have signed veteran backup quarterback Josh McCown with Jay Cutler's status for this week uncertain.

Cutler sat out the second half of Sunday's loss to Houston with a concussion. Jason Campbell took over and is expected to start Monday at San Francisco if Cutler can't go. But the Bears needed a backup.

McCown appeared in three games with Chicago last season and made two starts, completing 35 of 55 passes for 414 yards, two touchdowns and four interceptions.

The Bears also waived tight end Brody Eldridge on Tuesday.

>>Bears' Tillman's Wife Has 4th Child

Chicago Bears cornerback Charles Tillman's wife gave birth to the couple's fourth child. They were expecting a girl.

Tillman thanked his Twitter followers for their "thoughts and prayers" and added "Wife and baby are doing great" in a post Tuesday.

Tillman's status for Sunday's game against Houston was in question after he told a Chicago radio station he might have to miss it. He later said he expected to be available and wound up playing in a loss to Houston.

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Illinois Considers Tinkiering With Blocking

Illinois coach Tim Beckman says he may make changes to improve his team's short-yardage blocking.

The Illini (2-8, 0-6 Big Ten) came up short on two key third & 1 plays in their 17-3 loss to Minnesota on Saturday.

Beckman complained about his team's inability to get a yard. He said Monday he might make changes on the line or in the backfield.

Illinois' offense has been among the Big Ten's worst. The Illini have scored just under 17 points a game. And in six conference losses they've been even weaker at just under 11.

But Beckman stands by his quarterback. The coach says Nathan Scheelhaase (SHEEL'-hows) has done well with a new offense while battling injuries.

The Illini will try to end a 7-game losing streak Saturday at Purdue (4-6, 1-5).

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Rash of Burglaries Hitting Clinton Businesses

Clinton and surrounding areas have seen a rash of burglaries over the past several months.

 width=In the last three or four months alone, there have been almost a dozen burglaries to several area businesses, including a select few getting burglarized twice. Clinton Police Chief Mike Reidy says the theives are not spending a lot of time in the businesses and are taking start up cash for the next day and other loose money.

[audio:111512burglaries1.mp3] [/audio]

All the banks in Clinton offer a night deposit service to local businesses. Chief Reidy explains one thing businesses can do to make themselves less vulnerable to losing a lot of money is call the police department for an escort to the bank late at night. The Chief understands driving to a bank alone late at night can be a little scary, he says any business can call the police department and request a free escort to the bank.

[audio:111512burglaries2.mp3] [/audio]

These burglaries are taking place at very early hours of the morning, mainly between 3 and 5 am. Chief Reidy says they are seeking the public's help in find current suspects and preventing future thefts. The Chief says many times when they are asking neighbors to business and residential burglaries, people hear or see things but do not call because they do not want to be a bother. Chief Reidy emphasizes, calling in suspicious activity is not a bother.

[audio:111512burglaries3.mp3] [/audio]

Chief Reidy says at one break in they have video of the suspects in the building, but not much else because they are in all black with masks and gloves, leaving no fingerprints.

To call in any suspicious activity, you can call the police department at 935-9411.

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Plan To Build Memorial To Purple Heart Recipients

Troops killed or wounded in war will be honored with a new memorial at the cemetery in Springfield where President Abraham Lincoln is buried.

In a news release, the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency says the memorial is the result of an agreement signed by the agency and the Military Order of the Purple Heart to honor Springfield-area veterans.

John Lazell, the commander of Chapter 159 of the Military Order of the Purple Heart, says the memorial will be devoted to honor veterans wounded or killed in every conflict where American troops served.

Lazell says it will take one or two years raising money for the stone monument at Oak Ridge Cemetery. When it is built, the Historic Preservation Agency will maintain it.

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New Financing Allows Military Families To Own Home

MORE MILITARY FAMILIES WILL NOW BE ABLE TO BUY A HOME THROUGH THE STATE’S WELCOME HOME HEROES PROGRAM.

AN ADDITIONAL FIVE MILLION DOLLARS IS BEING PUMPED INTO THE PROGRAM…WHICH GOVERNOR PAT QUINN SAYS CAN MAKE THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN RENTING…AND OWNING A HOME.

[audio:afford1.mp3] [/audio]

ACCORDING TO GOV. QUINN, THE PROGRAM PROVIDES SOLDIERS AND THEIR FAMILIES WITH A 20 THOUSAND DOLLAR DOWN PAYMENT…A LOW FIXED INTEREST RATE…AND A MORTGAGE TAX CREDIT.

[audio:afford2.mp3] [/audio]

WELCOME HOME HEROES HAS ALREADY HELPED OVER 550 MILITARY FAMILIES BUY A HOME. QUINN SAYS THIS ADDITIONAL FINANCING WILL ASSIST 500 MORE. FOR MORE INFORMATION…VISIT THE WEBSITE: IHDA DOT ORG.

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Quinn: It's Time To Work Together

 width=Governor Pat Quinn says now that the election is over, it's time for lawmakers to put politics aside and get busy on issues that matter most.

[audio:rddBusy1.mp3] [/audio]

Quinn wants lawmakers to tackle pension before January 9th, when the new general assembly will be sworn in. He promised to start a grassroots campaign for pension reform back in August when lawmakers failed to get the job done in special but, he hasn't made good on that effort. It may not be necessary if they're planning to pass a reform package during veto or lame duck sessions.

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Schilling Wants Farm Bill Before New Congress Sworn In

 width=Illinois is losing a seat on the U.S. House Ag Committee now that 17th District Congressman Bobby Schilling lost a bid for reelection. Schilling says he wants to see a five year, not a two year, Farm Bill extension pass before he leaves office in January.

[audio:rddFarmExt1.mp3] [/audio]

Congressman Schilling says he wants to see a Farm Bill pass by the time he leaves office in January. He says it won't just impact farmers.

[audio:rddFarmExt2.mp3] [/audio]

Schilling says consumers will end up paying the price at the grocery store if farmers don't have good crop insurance. He'll be leaving office in January. He was unseated by Democrat Cheri Bustos in last Tuesday's election.

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Local Lawmaker Disappointed By Republican Party Showing At Last Week's Election

One local legislator is not happy with the showing of the Republican Party at last Tuesday's election.

Representative Bill Mitchell says downstate Republicans took a "drubbing" at the election. He felt as though the Republican candidates could have been better, and they need to work harder.

[audio:111212drubbing1.mp3] [/audio]

With the seven losses in the Illinois House, the Democrats now hold a super-majority. Rep. Mitchell's biggest concern with a super-majority in favor of the Democrats is that a borrowing bill can now be passed without any republican say. Financially, Illinois is in one of the worst situations in the country, and Rep. Mitchell feels this may not be the best thing for Illinois at this time.

[audio:111212drubbing2.mp3] [/audio]

Perhaps the biggest reason Democrats hold a super-majority in both the House and Senate would be thanks to redistricting. 2010 was a census year, and in a census year, the district maps are redrawn. Because Democrats the controlled the legislator, they were the ones to redraw the maps, and it is no secret they drew the maps up very much in their favor. Mitchell says that along with Republicans being outspent nearly two-and-a-half to one was the demise of the party this election.

[audio:111212drubbing3.mp3] [/audio]

Rep. Mitchell feels if Republicans are to regain any sort of numbers in the House and Senate, they need to find candidates who are willing to work to be good legislators.

Rep. Mitchell says many of the problems facing the state at this time are not Republican or Democrat issues, and the two parties need to work in a bi-partisan way to make things better for the citizens of Illinois.

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State's Attorney-Elect, Karl Koritz, Anxious To Take Over

 width=An unopposed candidate on the Tuesday ballot is looking forward to get going December 1.

State's Attorney-elect Karle Koritz will take over the office currently held by his father. Dick Koritz. The two rarely talk business away from the office, and Karle says there might a few things he does differently from his father as far as running the office. He does feel it is something special to be taking over for him.

[audio:11912kortiz1.mp3] [/audio]

Koritz comes to DeWitt County from McLean County, where he works in the State's Attorney's office as a prosecutor. Koritz explains the problems he sees in McLean County are scaled down quite a bit in DeWitt County, but there are a few things he wants to focus on in his tenure. He calls those things the 'three D's', domestic violence, DUI's, and drugs.

[audio:11912koritz2.mp3] [/audio]

Koritz is a Clinton native and he says prosecuting and working for the people he grew with in the community he grew up in is going to make his work that much more rewarding. He hopes to make the community a better place through his work.

[audio:11912koritz3.mp3] [/audio]

Koritz thanks the voters of the County. He says it is not lost on him that he had to ask for the job and he will have to do so again in four years. He hopes in the next four years, he can represent the county well and gain the voters trust and confidence.

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MLB Hardware Continues Being Handed Out

>>Molina Up For MVP Thursday

(Undated) -- Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina is up for the National League MVP award on Thursday. Molina is up against Giants catcher Buster Posey, Pirates outfielder Andrew McCutchen, Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun and Padres third baseman Chase Headley for the honor. It will be announced Thursday evening live on MLB Network.

>>Ventura Up For AL Manager Of The Year

(Undated) -- White Sox manager Robin Ventura is up for the American League Manager of the Year Award. Ventura will go up against Orioles skipper Buck Showalter and A's manager Bob Melvin for the honor. The winner will be announced this evening live on MLB Network.

>>Angels' Trout Named AL Rookie Of The Year

(New York, NY) -- Los Angeles Angels outfielder Mike Trout is the American League Rookie of the Year. Trout received all 28 first-place votes by the Baseball Writers Association of America. He is the eighth AL winner to be unanimously selected. Trout hit .326 with 30 home runs and 83 runs batted in this season. He beat out Oakland Athletics outfielder Yoenis Cespedes and Texas Rangers pitcher Yu Darvish, who were the other American League finalists.

>>Nationals' Harper Named NL Rookie Of The Year

(New York, NY) -- Washington Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper is the National League Rookie of the Year. He received 16-of-28 first-place votes by the Baseball Writers Association of America. Harper hit .270 with 22 home runs and 59 runs batted in this season. He beat out Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Wade Miley by just seven points. Miley received the other twelve first-place votes. Cincinnati Reds third baseman Todd Frazier finished third.

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Celtics Run Past Bulls

 width=Rajon Rondo finished a rebound shy of a triple-double as the Celtics took care of the Bulls, 101-95. Rondo had 20 points with 10 assists and nine boards as Boston moved to 4-and-3. Brandon Bass added 16 points while Kevin Garnett finished with 15 points in the victory. Luol Deng led the way with 26 points and 11 rebounds for Chicago. Joakim Noah added 17 points and 11 boards while Carlos Boozer had 15 points in the loss. The Bulls fell to 4-and-3.

NBA
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Milwaukee Bucks 105, Philadelphia 76ers 96
Utah Jazz 140, Toronto Raptors 133 (3OT)
Oklahoma City Thunder 92, Detroit Pistons 90
Miami Heat 113, Houston Rockets 110
Minnesota Timberwolves 90, Dallas Mavericks 82
Phoenix Suns 110, Denver Nuggets 100
Atlanta Hawks 95, Portland Trail Blazers 87

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Steelers Hold On For OT Win Over Chiefs

Shaun Suisham's third field goal of the game gave the Steelers a 16-13 overtime win over the Chiefs.  The kick was set up by Lawrence Timmons' interception on the first possession of the extra frame.  Byron Leftwich replaced Pittsburgh quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, who suffered a shoulder injury.  Leftwich threw for 73 yards in leading the offense.  Heath Miller led the way with four catches for 47 yards as the Steelers moved to 6-and-3.  Jamaal Charles had 23 carries for 100 yards and a touchdown for Kansas City.  Matt Cassel threw for 154 yards with the costly overtime pick.  The Chiefs had a 10-0 lead early in the second quarter, which was the first time they've led a game in regulation this season.  KC fell to 1-and-8 with the loss.

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Bears Notes

 width=>>Smith Says Bears Handled Cutler Concussion Properly

Coach Lovie Smith says the Chicago Bears properly handled quarterback Jay Cutler's concussion on Sunday night.

Smith says trainers immediately examined Cutler during a replay review after he took a helmet-to-helmet hit from Houston's Tim Dobbins late in the second quarter of a 13-6 loss to the Texans.

He says Cutler showed no symptoms of a concussion immediately after the hit, so the quarterback finished the half. Symptoms showed up at intermission and Cutler wound up sitting out the second half.

>>Bears Expected To Re-Sign McCown

(Lake Forest, IL) -- The Bears could be bringing back quarterback Josh McCown. ESPN reports Chicago is expected to re-sign the veteran with Jay Cutler's status in question. Cutler suffered a concussion in Sunday's loss to Houston. McCown made two starts for the Bears at the end of last season.

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Illinois' Monheim Named Big Ten's Freshman Of Week

 width=Good news was tough to come by after Illinois' seventh straight loss Saturday but the Big Ten recognized one bright spot and named Illini linebacker Mason Monheim its freshman of the week.

The conference honored Monheim on Monday for his 15-tackle performance in Illinois' 17-3 loss to the Gophers. Monheim's previous high for the Illini (2-8, 0-6 Big Ten) was 11 tackles in a game.

The 6-1, 230-pound Monheim has a team-high 74 tackles this season. He also was named Big Ten freshman of the week the first week in October for his performance against Penn State.

Monheim is a native of Orrville, Ohio.

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Illinois, Illinois State Coast To Victories

 width=>>Illinois Pounds St. Francis

Tyler Griffey scored 17 points and Tracy Abrams had 15, leading Illinois to an 89-64 win over St. Francis (N.Y.) Monday night.

Brandon Paul added 14 points and six assists for the Illini (2-0).

Akeem Johnson led St. Francis (1-1) with 13 points, Ben Mockford added 12 and Jalen Cannon had 11 rebounds.

Illinois couldn't shake the Terriers early, but closed the first half on a 15-0 run to take a 45-25 lead. The Illini held St. Francis scoreless for 7:11 during the spurt.

Illinois had only eight turnovers, something that concerned first-year coach John Groce during exhibition play.

>>ISU Wins Season Opener

 width=Jackie Carmichael had 27 points and 10 rebounds and Illinois State used a 21-0 first-half run to coast to a 100-72 season-opening victory over UC Santa Barbara on Monday night.

Tyler Brown added 22 points for the Redbirds, who shot 62% from the field, including 10 of 20 from 3-point range.

UC Santa Barbara (0-2) got 22 points and six assists from Taran Brown, and 15 points and 13 rebounds from Alan Williams.

Tyler Brown scored four straight points to start the 21-0 spurt for Illinois State, and finished with 12 during the run, which put the Redbirds up 27-6. They were ahead 49-29 at halftime and led by as many as 31 points in the second half when Carmichael hit a layup with 13:55 remaining.

NCAA Basketball ("USA Today"/ESPN Top-25 Poll)
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#1 Indiana Hoosiers 87, North Dakota State Bison 61
#5 Michigan Wolverines 91, IUPUI Jaguars 54
#16 Memphis Tigers 81, North Florida Ospreys 66
#19 UNLV Rebels 92, Northern Arizona Lumberjacks 54
#22 Gonzaga Bulldogs 84, West Virginia Mountaineers 50
#21 Notre Dame Fighting Irish 84, Monmouth Hawks 57
#25 Texas Longhorns 69, Coppin State Eagles 46

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Clinton Girls Top Mt. Zion In Hoops Opener

 width=CLINTON (1-0)   40
MT. ZION (0-1)   25

SCORING BY QUARTER:
CLINTON     10     8     11     11
MT. ZION      4      2     11      8

CLINTON SCORING:
ENNIS 0-0-0, HOUSTON 0-0-0, GINGER 1-0-2, HICKMAN 6-4-16
TOOL 2-0-5, TOOHILL 2-2-7, SCOTT 1-4-6, BIEBER 1-2-4
TOTALS 13-12-40

MT. ZION SCORING:
MARQUARDT 3-0-8, BROWN 2-0-4, MCELYEA 1-0-2, ELWICK 1-0-2
PROPST 4-1-9
TOTALS 11-1-25

THREE POINT BASKETS:
CLINTON 2 (TOOL 1, TOOHILL 1)
MT. ZION 2 (MARQUARDT 2)

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Holiday Weekend Report

November 10, 2012

 

Jail Population: 72

Summons Served: 15

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

November 11, 2012

 

Jail Population: 70

Summons Served: 1

Warrant Arrests: 2

 

November 12, 2012

 

Jail Population: 70

Summons Served: 0

Warrant Arrests: 1

 

November 13, 2012

 

Jail Population: 67

Summons Served: 0

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

Investigation into the scene of an accident which occurred at approximately 7:38 p.m. on Friday, November 2, revealed that a vehicle driven by Eric Sarff, 32, Champaign, and a vehicle driven by Twila Keylor, 52, Clinton, was traveling north on US Highway 51 near Carl Springs Road. Sarff said he began to change lanes and did not see Keylor beside him, causing both vehicles to collide causing minor damage. Sarff’s vehicle had minor damage to the front passenger side wheel well and door. Keylor had damage to the front driver side wheel, door, and side mirror. No injuries were reported and both vehicles were driven from the scene.

 

Donna Bishop, 58, Atlanta, was issued a citation for Speeding (69 mph in a 55 mph zone). Bishop posted her IL Driver’s License as bond and was released.

 

Raoof Raouf, 24, Champaign, was issued a citation for Speeding (89 mph in a 65 mph zone). Raouf posted his IL Driver’s License as bond and was released.

 

Landan Callahan, 26, Clinton, was issued a citation for Disobeying Traffic Control Devce. Callahan posted his IL Driver’s License as bond and was released.

 

Jana Sprague, 58, Waynesville, was issued a citation for Operating Uninsured Vehicle. Sprague posted her IL Driver’s License as bond and was released

Kevin Westbrook, 45, Wapella, was issued a citation for Driving While License Suspended. Westbrook posted the necessary bond and was released.

 

Adam Roberts, 26, Milwaukee, WI, was issued a citation for Speeding (70 mph in a 55 mph zone). Roberts promised to comply and was released.

 

Sofia Arenibar, 37, Chicago, was issued a citation for Operating Uninsured Vehicle. Arenibar was issued a notice to appear and was released.

 

ALL SUSPECTS ARE PRESUMED INNOCENT UNTIL FOUND GUILTY IN A COURT OF LAW.

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iPads Very Popular At Clinton High School In First Year

The Clinton School District's push to implement technology in their classrooms, to this point, has been largely successful.

 width=Last year administrators in the district received the iPads to familiarize themselves with them, and now this year, the district has purchased more iPads for the classrooms of the district. The goal for the district is to have a device in the hands of all students, but because that is an expensive endeavor, only a limited amount of iPads are in each building currently. Principal of Clinton High School, Dr. Candice Swift explains because of this, the teachers have to rotate who gets the iPads throughout the year.

[audio:111412clintonipads1.mp3] [/audio]

There are several ways these iPads can be implemented into a classroom setting. Dr. Swift explains teachers can use them for engaging their students during a discussion as response devices. They can also be used for learning videos and skill building.

[audio:111412clintonipads2.mp3] [/audio]

Dr. Swift recognizes the need for technology to be used in the classrooms because of the continued advancements in the world of technology. She says kids at home are using these so much, it becomes increasingly important they use them at school.

[audio:111412clintonipads3.mp3] [/audio]

The Clinton Board of Education has had several of it's teachers demonstrate the many ways iPads are being used in their classrooms. Dr. Swift says she is very pleased with the way the iPads are being used and the cooperation amongst the teachers to share them through the whole building.

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Warrensburg-Latham Seeing Good Things In Preparing For New Common Core Standards

 width=The Warrensburg-Latham School district is working hard to prepare their teachers and administrators for the Common Core Curriculum.

Come the school year 2014-15, Illinois students will be introduced to a new set of learning standards. In preparation of that, schools all over Illinois are beginning to prepare their new curriculum for these standards. Superintendent of Warrensburg-Latham Schools, Kristen Kendrick explains they are seeing changes in just about all academic subjects. In reading and writing for example, she says all subject areas are trying to find ways to incorporate more reading and writing into their subjects.

[audio:111312wlcommoncore1.mp3] [/audio]

In the areas of math, Kendrick says they are seeing various concepts introduced earlier. She believes this is to allow students to have a better understand and grasp on the concepts so when they reach higher levels, they can get to a deeper level of learning.

[audio:111312wlcommoncore2.mp3] [/audio]school

A lot of work is going into preparing for these new standards. Kendrick explains currently the Warrensburg-Latham staff is using their school improvement days and various meeting times to prepare for this. She says the common core standards are going to give teachers a better understanding of things their students need to be focused on.

[audio:111312wlcommoncore3.mp3] [/audio]

In giving teachers a better understanding of their students goals, Kendrick says the new common core gives teachers a little more flexibility in helping their students reach those goals. She feels it will allow the teachers to teach to the strengths of the students, as they see fit.

[audio:111312wlcommoncore4.mp3] [/audio]

Kendrick is a supporter of the new common core standards. She feels this is just another re-evaluation of the way things are changing, and adjusting to those changes. While adjusting to the new common core standards is a lot of work, she notes it is very much worth the while.

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NASCAR RECAP

Kevin Harvick took the checkered flag in the AdvoCare 500 at Phoenix International Raceway ahead of a huge pileup of cars crossing the start-finish line.  The race also featured a wreck involving points-leader Jimmie Johnson and a brawl between Jeff Gordon and Clint Bowyer's team.  Johnson entered the race with a seven-point lead over Brad Keselowski, but cut a tire and fell 38 laps down before finishing 32nd.  Keselowski avoided the late wreckage to finish sixth and now holds a 20-point lead heading into next week's season-finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

The race ended in a green-white-checkered finish following a wreck between Bowyer and Gordon.  While NASCAR halted the race for track cleanup, the crews from each team broke into a brawl on pit road.  Bowyer got out of his car and sprinted to Gordon's hauler before he was held off by NASCAR officials.  Denny Hamlin took second place in the season's penultimate race, followed by Kyle Busch, Kasey Kahne [[ Cane ]] and Ryan Newman.

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Weekend National Basketball Scores

NBA
------
Brooklyn Nets 82, Orlando Magic 74
Los Angeles Clippers 89, Atlanta Hawks 76
Memphis Grizzlies 104, Miami Heat 86
Oklahoma City Thunder 106, Cleveland Cavaliers 91
Los Angeles Lakers 103, Sacramento Kings 90

NCAA Basketball ("USA Today"/ESPN Top-25 Poll)
------
#2 Louisville Cardinals 79, Manhattan Jaspers 51
#4 Ohio State Buckeyes 82, Albany Great Danes 60
#9 Syracuse Orange 62, #20 San Diego State Aztecs 49 (Battle on the Midway)
#10 Florida Gators 84, Alabama State Hornets 35
#11 Arizona Wildcats 82, Charleston Southern Buccaneers 73
#12 North Carolina Tar Heels 80, Florida Atlantic Owls 56
#18 Baylor Bears 78, Jackson State Tigers 47
#21 Wisconsin Badgers 87, Southeastern Louisiana Lions 47

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Bulls Trample Wolves

oakim Noah scored 17 points with seven rebounds as the Bulls took care of the Timberwolves, 87-80.  Nikola Pekovic had 18 points and eight rebounds for Minnesota while Andrei Kirilenko added 11 points with 12 boards.  Dante Cunningham had 14 points off the bench for the Wolves, who dropped to 4-and-2.  The Wolves are back in action tomorrow at Dallas.

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NFL Weekend Scores

NFL
------
Cincinnati Bengals 31, New York Giants 13
Tennessee Titans 37, Miami Dolphins 3
Baltimore Ravens 55, Oakland Raiders 20
Minnesota Vikings 34, Detroit Lions 24
New England Patriots 37, Buffalo Bills 31
New Orleans Saints 31, Atlanta Falcons 27
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 34, San Diego Chargers 24
Denver Broncos 36, Carolina Panthers 14
Seattle Seahawks 28, New York Jets 7
Dallas Cowboys 38, Philadelphia Eagles 23
St. Louis Rams 24, San Francisco 49ers 24 (OT)
Houston Texans 13, Chicago Bears 6

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Monday Night Football Preview

Teams headed in opposite directions meet up on "Monday Night Football" as the Kansas City Chiefs clash with the Pittsburgh Steelers at Heinz Field.  The Chiefs have lost five straight and are in last place in the AFC West at 1-and-7.  Quarterback Matt Cassel will start in place of the injured Brady Quinn, who still has not been cleared to play following a concussion in Week Eight.  KC's lone win this season came in Week Three at New Orleans.  Meanwhile, the Steelers have won three in-a-row and four of their last five to improve to 5-and-3.  Pittsburgh pulled out a 24-20 road win against the defending Super Bowl champion Giants last week.  The Steelers are 3-and-0 at home.  Pittsburgh offensive coordinator Todd Haley was fired as head coach of the Chiefs last December.

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Rams-49ers Game Suffers Clock Error

The first tie in an NFL game since 2008 wasn't the only strange thing to happen during Sunday's contest between the Rams and 49ers in San Francisco.  In the second quarter, Niners quarterback Alex Smith completed a pass which required a measurement to determine whether the play gained enough for a first down.  During the measurement, the clock operator never stopped the clock, causing one-minute-and-12-seconds to run off during a stoppage in play.  The play was ruled short of a first down before San Francisco ended up converting on fourth down.  The game went to overtime before ending in a 24-24 tie.  The NFL had no comment on the officiating blunder.

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Texans knock out Cutler, beat Bears 13-6

Arian Foster finished with 102 yards rushing and a touchdown catch, and the Houston Texans intercepted Jay Cutler twice before knocking him out of the game with a concussion on their way to a 13-6 victory over the Chicago Bears on Sunday night.

In a showdown between 2 of the NFL's best teams, the Texans (8-1) beat the Bears (7-2) at their own game. They came away with four takeaways and Tim Dobbins delivered the biggest blow when he drove his helmet into Cutler late in the second quarter.

Foster was the only reliable offensive weapon on either side, particularly in the first half when he ran for 85 yards and made a sprawling catch for a 2-yard touchdown to put Houston ahead 10-3.

Otherwise, neither team got much going on a soggy night.

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Western Illinois Opens With 71-39 Win Over Wabash

Terell Parks had 15 points and seven rebounds and Ceola Clark scored 12 points to lead Western Illinois to a 71-39 victory in its season opener against Wabash College on Saturday night.

Adam Link added 10 points for the Leathernecks, who took control of the game with an 18-2 run to close the first half. Western Illinois led 34-15 at the break.

Ross Sponsler scored 14 points and Kasey Oetting 13 for the Little Giants. Wabash, a Division III school in Crawfordsville, Ind., classified the game as an exhibition.

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Minnesota Beats Illinois 17-3

 width= It wasn't pretty, but Minnesota was good enough in a 17-3 win over Illinois on Saturday.

In a battle of sluggish offenses, Minnesota running back Donnell Kirkwood did most of the work, rushing for 152 yards and two touchdowns. Kirkwood's 3-yard run in the third quarter broke a 3-3 tie. He scored on a 12-yard run late in the fourth quarter to clinch the victory, giving his team its fourth straight win at Illinois.

Minnesota (6-4, 2-4 Big Ten) became bowl eligible for the first time since 2009, and won for the second time in three tries. Illinois (2-8, -6) has dropped seven straight including 12 in a row within Big Ten play.

The victory was the first Big Ten road win for second-year Minnesota coach Jerry Kill.

In their first eight possessions, the Illini had a 20-yard field goal by Nick Immekus in the first quarter, a fumble and six punts.

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Presentation Focuses On Attire Of Mary Todd Lincoln

A unique event hosted by the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum will let Lincoln history buffs and fashion lovers combine their interests.

The museum has planned two presentations in Illinois this month that will showcase styles of clothes worn by the president's wife, Mary Todd Lincoln.

It's called the "Culture of Clothing."

One presentation will be held Monday in Chicago and the other one is in Springfield on Nov. 19.

Event officials say that models wearing new versions of her dresses and jewelry will mingle with visitors and answer questions about the clothing.

Actresses portraying Lincoln's seamstress will also interact with guests to discuss their work and women's lives in that era.

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Randy Rice To Be Next DeWitt County Coroner

Long time County Coroner Alex Calvert has decided to step down from his post, and running in his place unopposed was Randy Rice.

Rice explains he and Calvert share a close relationship, in working together at Calvert Funeral Homes in Clinton. Rice feels after 16 years as Chief Deputy Coroner, he is ready to step into the position of the County Coroner.

[audio:111212rice1.mp3] [/audio]

In a county like DeWitt, the Coroner position is not a full time position. Rice explains the Coroner basically investigates deaths, whether they are homicides, accidental deaths, or natural deaths, he is the one who makes the determination as to what happened.

[audio:111212rice2.mp3] [/audio]

Rice says he is looking forward to serving the people of DeWitt County and hopes to do that well. He feels his experience as Chief Deputy Coroner and working as  a Funeral Director will carry over into this position.

Rice thanks the constituents of DeWitt County for their support.

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Big Outside Money Went To Losing IL Candidates

The amount of money spent by "independent expenditure" committees, including so-called "super PACs," on behalf of Illinois congressional candidates in the Nov. 6 election. The amounts reflect the total spent either in support of candidates or against their opponents, and who won or lost. Incumbents are identified as (i).

Name Party Dist Amount WL
Walsh, Joe (i) R 8 $5,893,809 L
Duckworth, Tammy D 8 $701,432 W
Dold, Robert (i) R 10 $4,704,746 L
Schneider, Brad D 10 $2,421,204 W
Biggert, Judy (i) R 11 $4,119,416 L
Foster, Bill D 11 $3,441,987 W
Plummer, Jason R 12 $4,174,159 L
Enyart, William D 12 $3,293,462 W
Gill, David D 13 $3,058,148 L
Davis, Rodney R 13 $3,787,797 W
Schilling, Bobby (i) R 17 $4,572,945 L
Bustos, Cheri D 17 $4,681,209 W
Other races $72,459
Total $44,922,773

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Bruised Illinois GOP Looks To 2014

Stinging from a walloping at the polls, Illinois Republicans are already focusing on the 2014 governor's race as their best chance to emerge from the political cellar, while acknowledging a recovery means doing things differently.

Democrats won veto-proof majorities in the state House and Senate on Tuesday. They also now make up a majority of the state's congressional delegation and control all but two statewide offices.

Republicans are re-evaluating everything from their campaign strategies to the diversity of their candidates and their policy priorities, such as their line against immigration reforms.

Illinois Republican Party Chairman Pat Brady says winning the governor's race would be the "quickest trip back to relevancy." Brady says the party must overcome its "caricature" as "a bunch of angry people standing in the way of everything."

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Newly Revealed Letters Shed Light On Lincoln Widow

Newly revealed letters written by Abraham Lincoln's widow in the months after the president's assassination show her frantic mindset as she grappled with enormous debts.

Three letters written by Mary Lincoln and her son Robert were donated Saturday to the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum in Springfield.

Only an incomplete portion of 1 of the letters had ever been published. The rest is new to historians.

The letters were donated by descendants of Wall Street banker Benjamin Sherman, who helped raise around $11,000 to support the Lincoln family after the president's death.

Also donated to the museum was a ledger showing contributions from hundreds of people nationwide.

In one letter, Mary Lincoln tells Sherman she is humiliated to think she and her children are "destined, to be forever, homeless."

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Lake Springfield Gets 150,000 New Crappies

Lake Springfield has a few more crappies - well, many more.

Fisheries biologists have drained a rearing pond, collecting more than 150,000 crappies to be stocked in the lake, to the presumable delight of fishermen.

The re-stocking happens every few years to replenish the lake's numbers.

Dan Stephenson of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources said the number of crappies produced was a record but that he would have liked to have seen bigger fish. The small crappies averaged 3.5 to four inches long.

In all, 1,960 pounds of fish were stocked into Lake Springfield on Friday - a job that took hours and a lot of patience from a crew using dip nets. Volunteers also helped from the Springfield Crappie Club.

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Ex-Employee Gets 3 Years In Death Of Disabled Man

A former employee at a group home in eastern Illinois has been sentenced to three years in prison in the death of a developmentally disabled resident.

Marquis Harmon pleaded guilty in August to criminal neglect of a person with a disability and obstructing justice.

He was accused of failing to intervene to stop a fellow employee from beating resident Paul McCann so severely that he died four days later from what his family called "torture-like" punishment at the group home in Charleston.

During Friday's sentencing, Circuit Judge James Glenn said Harmon was capable of keeping stopping the attacking but did not.

Harmon's co-defendant, Keyun Newble, was sentenced to eight years in prison in July after being convicted of involuntary manslaughter.

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Veterans Day Events Planned Statewide

Veterans Day observations are being held statewide including a traveling art exhibit that highlights hand-sketched portraits of fallen service members.

The holiday will be observed Monday. Many schools will be closed including in Chicago. It's also a U.S. Postal Service holiday and most government buildings will be closed.

On Sunday, Gov. Pat Quinn is expected to present an art exhibit called "Portrait of a Soldier." It features pictures of soldiers who have been killed since Sept. 11, 2001. It's a traveling exhibit and is currently on display at Chicago's Navy Pier.

Meanwhile, a group of veterans from wars in Afghanistan, Iraq and Vietnam says they'll call for peace and the immediate withdrawal of troops.

On Saturday, hundreds in southwestern Illinois attended a veterans' event at the O'Fallon Veterans' Monument.

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SIU Scraps Old Strategic Plans For Carbondale

Southern Illinois University has developed a scaled-back plan for the future of its Carbondale campus after closing the books on a set of more ambitious goals.

The old plan was called "Southern at 150" and included the goal of making the school 1 of top 75 public research institutes nationwide by the time the university turns 150 in 2019.

Chancellor Rita Cheng says the old plan wasn't bad but was drafted in a different era for public higher education. It was launched in 2003.

The new plan has been the result of 2 years of work by a committee. It sets goals for student success and the university's finances, among other things.

It'll likely be presented to the board of trustees early next year.

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AG Launches Guide For Veterans' Legal Protections

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan has released a legal guide to help military members, veterans and their family members.

It's called the "Legal Rights of Illinois Service Members" and was announced on Sunday.

Madigan says it's a resource that helps veterans and military members understand legal protections and benefits, especially when it comes to employment issues and consumer protections.

The office has also started tracking complaints from veterans and military service members to help better identify potential consumer fraud.

The guide can be found online or by contacting a hotline.

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New State Farm Insurance Agent Opens In Clinton

Clinton and DeWitt County is now home to a new State Farm Insurance agent in Clinton.

Jason Frantz spent the summer preparing his storefront on the Clinton Square and in October officially opened for business. The Atlanta native says he has always known he wanted to be an independent State Farm Agent. He likes the idea of being a small town insurance agent, and feels Clinton is a great fit.

[audio:111212frantz1.mp3] [/audio]

On top of the traditional insurance products, Frantz says pe width=ople may not realize some of the other products and services they offer. He explains State Farm has a bank, with traditional banking service, and they can help in retirement planning.

[audio:111212frantz2.mp3] [/audio]

Frantz explains helping people financially is something he is very passionate about. He explains he hopes to be in Clinton for a long time to come. He has been through an extensive amount of training and has taken several educational courses to get certificates to sell his products.

[audio:111212frantz3.mp3] [/audio]

Having set up shop in Clinton, Frantz wants to be very approachable for all his customers. He says he wants them to know he can be there for any of their financial needs. He adds he wants to look out for them financially and help them get the best deals they can.

[audio:111212frantz4.mp3] [/audio]

Friday morning, a ribbon cutting ceremony was held at Frantz storefront. He is located at 602 West Side Square, next to K&Ms Yak Shak. You can get a hold of Frantz at 217935-0252 or visit www.insureclinton.com.

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Clinton Christmas Parade Grand Marshall Nominations and Float Entry Forms Due Monday

 width=The deadline for the Clinton Area Chamber of Commerce's annual Christmas Parade float entries and grand marshall nominees are due Monday.

The Chamber has been accepting nominations and float entries since October, and today those are due. Executive Director of the Clinton Chamber, Marian Brisard explains the "Light Up The Night" Christmas parade is an annual event the Chamber hosts each year, and it is not hard to make a nomination for the parade's Grand Marshall.

[audio:111212christmasparade1.mp3] [/audio]

The Christmas parade has gone under a rather large change for 2012. Traditionally the parade takes place on a Wednesday night, however, the Chamber Board has decided the "Light Up The Night" parade will now be on a Saturday afternoon. Brisard says this is a change they have contemplated for a long time and it will end a 20 plus year run on being in the evening.

[audio:111212christmasparade2.mp3] [/audio]

The Chamber is closed for the Veteran's Day Holiday Monday, but entries can be dropped off still at their off. They ask that those nomination letters be slid under the door. Those nominations or entries can be dropped off at 100 South Center Street, Suite 101 on the Clinton Square.

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Weekly Weather Update

November is starting out cooler than normal. We will see highs in the 60s this weekend but a cold front will be moving in at the beginning of the week. State Climatologist Jim Angel has more.
 
[audio:wx119.mp3] [/audio]

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NHL, Players' Association Meet For Fourth Straight Day

The NHL and Players' Association met for a fourth consecutive day on Friday in an attempt to agree on a new collective bargaining agreement. The league has offered a 50-50 split of revenues and to honor all player contracts in full with interest. The report also indicated that NHLPA Executive Director Don Fehr [[ fair ]] sent a memo to his constituents indicating that talks are not going as well as the league is making it seem.

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Former AL President Lee MacPhail Dies At 95

Former Major League Baseball executive Lee MacPhail is dead. According to the National Baseball Hall of Fame, the former American League president passed away Thursday night at his home in Delray Beach, Florida at the age of 95. Lee's son, Andy, was the general manager of the Twins from 1985 through 1994.

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Gophers Football Faces Illinois

Minnesota football storms into Champaign today to take on Illinois. The Golden Gophers lost at home to Michigan last week to fall to 5-and-4 with a 1-and-4 conference mark. The Illini enter today's game at 2-and-7 and are winless in Big Ten play.

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Friday National Scoreboard

NBA
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Milwaukee Bucks 101, Washington Wizards 91
Brooklyn Nets 107, Orlando Magic 68
Philadelphia 76ers 106, Boston Celtics 100
New York Knicks 104, Dallas Mavericks 94
Miami Heat 95, Atlanta Hawks 89
Memphis Grizzlies 93, Houston Rockets 85
New Orleans Hornets 107, Charlotte Bobcats 99
Oklahoma City Thunder 105, Detroit Pistons 94
Minnesota Timberwolves 96, Indiana Pacers 94
Phoenix Suns 107, Cleveland Cavaliers 105
San Antonio Spurs 97, Sacramento Kings 86
Denver Nuggets 104, Utah Jazz 84
Los Angeles Lakers 101, Golden State Warriors 77

NCAA Basketball ("USA Today"/ESPN Top-25 Poll)
------
#1 Indiana Hoosiers 97, Bryant University Bulldogs 54
#3 Kentucky Wildcats 72, Maryland Terrapins 69 (at Brooklyn, NY)
#4 Ohio State Buckeyes vs. Marquette Golden Eagles (at Charleston, SC) (CANCELLED)
#5 Michigan Wolverines 100, Slippery Rock The Rock 62
#6 North Carolina State Wolfpack 97, Miami (OH) Redhawks 59
#7 Kansas Jayhawks 74, Southeast Missouri State Redhawks 55
#8 Duke Blue Devils 74, Georgia State Panthers 55
#10 Florida Gators vs. Georgetown Hoyas (at Jacksonville, FL) (CANCELLED)
#12 North Carolina Tar Heels 76, Gardner-Webb Runnin' Bulldogs 59
#13 UCLA Bruins 86, Indiana State Sycamores 59
Connecticut Huskies 66, #14 Michigan State 62 (at Ramstein, Germany)
#15 Creighton Bluejays 71, North Texas Mean Green 51
#18 Baylor Bears 99, Lehigh Mountain Hawks 77
#22 Gonzaga Bulldogs 103, Southern Utah Thunderbirds 65
South Alabama Jaguars 76, #24 Florida State 71
#24 Texas Longhorns 55, Fresno State Bulldogs 53

 

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Demorcrat Gill Concedes In Il. 13th District

 Democratic congressional candidate David Gill is conceding in his central Illinois race to Republican Rodney Davis.

Gill said Friday that his campaign completed an analysis of outstanding provisional and absentee ballots in the state's 13th congressional district. Gill says "there are simply not enough" uncounted ballots left to erase his deficit. The Associated Press declared Davis the winner on Tuesday. Davis on Friday thanked Gill for campaigning with "passion."

Gill, a Bloomington physician, initially faced longtime Republican Congressman Tim Johnson of Urbana. But, just weeks after an easy primary win in the new district, Johnson announced that he wouldn't seek re-election.

Republicans chose Davis to fill the place on the ballot. He was an aide to Republican Congressman John Shimkus' and lives in Taylorville.

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SIU Medicine Weekly Update

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is a serious lung disease that over time makes it difficult for people to breathe.
 

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD, is the fourth leading cause of death and the second leading cause of disability in the United States. In people who have COPD the airways are partially blocked, which makes it hard to get air in and out of the lungs. Dr. Joseph Henkle, professor and chief of pulmonary medicine at SIU School of Medicine in Springfield, explains the disease.
 [audio:siupul1.mp3] [/audio]
 
Dr. Henkle says symptoms of COPD are breathlessness during exercise, especially in older individuals. Also, individuals may experience smoker’s cough, on a daily basis coughing up small bits of discolored phlegm. He offers some treatment options to help manage the disease.
 
[audio:siupul2.mp3] [/audio]
 
Dr. Henkle encourages anyone who has symptoms of COPD to see their primary care physician. They may be referred to a pulmonologist for further evaluation and possible treatment. He also suggests that individuals with lung diseases get flu and pneumonia vaccinations.

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Complain Says Clinton Landfill Bypassed County

Champaign officials are trying a new tactic to delay or stop a proposed toxic-waste landfill in DeWitt County.

The city filed a complaint Friday with the Illinois Pollution Control Board claiming that Clinton Landfill never received county approval for a chemical-waste unit.

Landfill operators have applied for a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency permit to bury polychlorinated biphenyls - a now-banned industrial chemical - in part of the landfill.

Nearby municipalities oppose the plan because waste would be above part of an aquifer that provides drinking water to about 750,000 residents.

The county approved a municipal waste landfill in 2002. But Champaign's attorneys say the company should have undergone another local review for a chemical-waste unit.

The landfill's attorney didn't immediately return a message Friday.

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Illinois Governor Wants Pension Reform By Jan. 9

Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn says he's looking forward to accomplishing pension reform by Jan. 9 with bipartisan cooperation and before a new Legislature is sworn in.

The governor spoke to reporters Friday in Chicago after launching a new statewide public-private partnership to improve services for veterans.

Quinn says an overhaul of the state's employee retirement system is needed so there will be adequate resources for schools, public safety and veterans' programs.

He says Tuesday's election results show that voters across the country want to see Democrats and Republicans work together.

Democrats won larger majorities in the Legislature in Tuesday's election, giving them veto-proof majorities in both the House and the Senate. That could reduce the governor's role in negotiations. Quinn says he's not concerned about that.

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Veterans Cash Lottery Begins

A NEW “VETERANS CASH” INSTANT LOTTERY TICKET IS NOW AVAILABLE.
 
GOVERNOR PAT QUINN SAYS ALL PROCEEDS FROM THE SALE OF VETERANS CASH...WHICH HAS BEEN AROUND SINCE 2006…GO TO VETERANS ORGANIZATIONS ALL OVER THE STATE.
 
[audio:vetcash.mp3] [/audio]
 
IT COSTS TWO BUCKS TO PLAY VETERANS CASH…WHICH HAS A TOP PRIZE OF 20 THOUSAND DOLLARS.

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WIU To Honor Vets With Camouflage Football Jerseys

Western Illinois University football players are marking Veterans Day with camouflage jerseys.

The Macomb school says the players will debut the new jerseys this Saturday in their last home game of the season. The Leathernecks play Youngstown State.

The jerseys will go on sale to the public after the game with $25 of each sale going to the Fallen Soldiers Scholarship Program. The program started in honor of 2 WIU alumni who were killed in the line of duty.

The purple jerseys will have brown and tan camouflage numbers, camouflage stripes down the sides and camouflage trim around the collar. The Western Illinois Foundation purchased the jerseys for the football program.

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Gill Concedes to Davis in 13th Congressional District Race

 width=Democratic candidate Doctor David Gill on Friday announced he was conceding the 13th Congressional House race to Republican Rodney Davis of Taylorville.

 

In a statement released on Friday, Gill said that his exhausted campaign team has completed a county by county analysis of outstanding provisional and absentee ballots in the 13th Congressional District, as well as some precinct-based anomalies in ballot returns and turnout.

 

Gill said the closeness of this race (less than 1/2 percentage point) demanded that his campaign diligently check the numbers. He was very grateful for the dedicated work of campaign staff to go through the data in the last few days, and for the cooperation of election officials in each of the 14 counties.

 

Gill added that had become clear that there were not enough uncounted ballots remaining to wipe out the current 1,287 vote deficit.

 

Gill said that while he and Republican Rodney Davis had different priorities and political philosophies, he hoped Davis seek ways to compromise and support the President.

 

Gill said that the time has now come to bring the campaign to a close.

 

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Ten Illinois Counties Say They Want Concealed Carry

Residents in some rural counties have sent a message to Illinois lawmakers: Legalize the right to carry concealed weapons.

Measures supporting concealed carry passed overwhelmingly in 10 counties where they were on Tuesday's ballot - Adams, Bond, Henry, McDonough, Mercer, Randolph, Rock Island, Schuyler, Stephenson and Warren.

The votes were non-binding because local law cannot override state law. But advocates say they hope to build pressure on lawmakers to support concealed carry.

Illinois is the last state where carrying concealed weapons is entirely illegal.

The Illinois House last year defeated a bill that would have legalized concealed weapons, but the vote was close.

Gov. Pat Quinn has promised to veto any bill that would legalize concealed weapons and pushed for a ban on assault weapons earlier this year.

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Carbon Monoxide Warning As Colder Weather Sets In

The Illinois Poison Center is warning people of the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning, especially as the weather gets colder.

Among the most common sources of the odorless, toxic gas are malfunctioning heaters and furnaces.

The Poison Center's medical director, Dr. Michael Wahl, says carbon monoxide in a home can easily go undetected. The center recommends that people install carbon monoxide detectors on each floor of their homes and have furnaces inspected each year.

Other potential sources of carbon monoxide include charcoal grills, lanterns, gasoline-powered machines such as snow blowers, and gas stoves and dryers.

Carbon monoxide poisoning can cause flu-like symptoms including headache, nausea, vomiting and dizziness, and in severe cases death.

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Illinois Recognizes Adoption Awareness Month

The state of Illinois is recognizing national Adoption Awareness Month by thanking parents who have opened their homes to children in need.

In a statement Thursday, the state Department of Children and Family Services said nearly 1,700 children were adopted into permanent homes last year in Illinois. Over the past decade, 17,639 kids found homes through DCFS.

The state takes children into temporary care when their homes are unsafe. Most kids are temporarily placed with a relative or foster family until they can be reunited with their parents. If that's not possible, the state seeks an adoptive family.

There are currently 2,040 Illinois children legally available for adoption.

Interested families should call the Adoption Information Center of Illinois at 800-572-2390 or visit www.adoptinfo-il.org.

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Lawmakers Announce Lame Duck Session

The Illinois House of Representatives will be in lame-duck session from January 3rd through the 8th.  Some lawmakers say this could be very bad news for the people across the state.  The 67-percent tax increase was passed during a lame-duck session back in 2011.  The extra cash from the tax hike was supposed to pay down the state's unpaid bills but Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka has said not much has been used for that purpose.  The state still owes billions of dollars in unpaid bills, which leads many to believe the tax hike won't expire at the end of 2014 as it's supposed to.

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WIU To Honor Veterans With Camouflage Football Jerseys

Western Illinois University football players are marking Veterans Day with camouflage jerseys.

The Macomb school says the players will debut the new jerseys this Saturday in their last home game of the season. The Leathernecks play Youngstown State.

The jerseys will go on sale to the public after the game with $25 of each sale going to the Fallen Soldiers Scholarship Program. The program started in honor of 2 WIU alumni who were killed in the line of duty.

The purple jerseys will have brown and tan camouflage numbers, camouflage stripes down the sides and camouflage trim around the collar. The Western Illinois Foundation purchased the jerseys for the football program.

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Illinois Drought Conditions Better In Illinois Than Elsewhere

The nation's worst drought in decades is worsening in other key Midwest farm states, but Illinois growers aren't likely to complain about what's going on in their state.

The U.S. Drought Monitor's weekly update shows 60% of the land in the lower 48 states is experiencing some degree of drought. That's down less than a percentage point from the previous week.

In Illinois, 42% of the state is in some form of drought. But unlike much of the Midwest, none of Illinois is in the two worst drought classifications.

The U.S. Agriculture Department says Illinois corn and soybean growers have virtually wrapped up their harvests and nearly all of the winter wheat crop in Illinois is now in the ground. Three-quarters of that crop has emerged.

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Social Security Honoring Veterans By Expediting Disability Claims

As Americans take time this Veterans Day to honor those who have served our country, Social Security would like to remind veterans of a special they program they have for them if they have been hurt serving America.

Social Security's "Wounded Warrior Initiative" is geared towards veterans who have been injured in the line of duty. Jack Meyers with Social Security explains this initiative is designed to expedite the disability application process. He says the criteria are the same for veterans and anyone else, the difference being, veterans get their claims expedited.

[audio:11912veteranss1.mp3] [/audio]

Because getting the medical records of an individual can take quite a while, up to several weeks, to get to Social Security, Meyers explains they have partnered with the Department of Veterans Affairs to get access to a veteran's medical records quicker.

[audio:11912veteranss2.mp3] [/audio]

According to Meyers, many times, a wounded veteran who cannot work will not apply for disability benefits because they think it would interfere with the benefits they are receiving from the military. Meyers encourages that person to apply , and make it known in the application they are unable to work.

[audio:11912veteranss3.mp3] [/audio]

Expediting the claims process for veterans can significantly speed up the process. For more information on the Wounded Warriors Initiative, you can visit www.socialsecurity.gov/woundedwarriors.

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NASCAR's Chase Heads To Phoenix

The Chase for the Sprint Cup heads to the desert on Sunday.  Jimmie Johnson holds a seven-point lead over Brad Keselowski as drivers look to tackle Phoenix International Raceway.  The season concludes at Homestead-Miami Speedway next weekend. 

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MLB Names Silver Slugger Winners

Major League Baseball announced its American and National League Silver Slugger Award winners on Thursday. The award honors the best offensive player at each position. Tigers third baseman and Triple Crown winner Miguel Cabrera headlines the list of 18 players from both leagues. He joins teammate and first baseman Prince Fielder. Second baseman Robinson Cano and shortstop Derek Jeter represent the Yankees. Josh Hamilton of the Rangers, Mike Trout from the Angels and Josh Willingham of Minnesota complete the outfield winners. Catcher A.J. Pierzynski of the White Sox and designated hitter Billy Butler from Kansas City round out the American League.

The Nationals received three awards in first baseman Adam LaRoche, shortstop Ian Desmond and starting pitcher Stephen Strasburg. Milwaukee outfielder Ryan Braun won his fifth straight award. Pittsburgh's Andrew McCutchen and Jay Bruce from Cincinnati close out the NL outfield. Diamondbacks second baseman Aaron Hill, Padres third baseman Chase Headley and Giants catcher Buster Posey also earned Silver Sluggers.

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2012 Carrier Classic Offers Both Men's And Women's Game

This year's Carrier Classic is offering up not one, but two games today. The first ever doubleheader features fourth-ranked Ohio State taking on Marquette aboard the flight deck of the USS Yorktown. The Ohio State women's team will also be in action, going up against Notre Dame. The Lady Irish were the national championship runner-up last season. The addition of the women's game is meant to highlight the critical role of women in service. North Carolina's men's team beat Michigan State in last year's inaugural Carrier Classic aboard the USS Carl Vinson in San Diego. Proceeds from the games help the Wounded Warrior Project.

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Durant Leads Thunder Plast Bulls

Kevin Durant scored 10 of his 24 points in the fourth quarter and the Oklahoma City Thunder beat the Chicago Bulls 97-91 on Thursday night.

Durant iced the game with an off-balance jumper off one foot with 35.1 seconds to play.

Serge Ibaka scored 15 of his 21 points in the first half, and had a team-high nine rebounds for the Thunder, who beat the Bulls for the third time in their last four games at Chicago. Russell Westbrook chipped in with 16 points and 12 assists.

Luol Deng led the Bulls with 27 points, and Richard Hamilton added 20 points and eight rebounds. Joakim Noah had nine points, 13 rebounds and a team-high six assists.

NBA
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Los Angeles Clippers 103, Portland Trail Blazers 90

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Illinois, NCAA Basketball Season Opens Tonight

The 2012-13 college basketball season gets underway this weekend. Illinois hosts Colgate tonight. The Fighting Illini tip-off the basketball season tonight as part of the Maui Invitational. Illinois battles St. Francis-New York at Assembly Hall on Monday before facing Hawaii in Honolulu on Friday.

NCAA Basketball ("USA Today"/ESPN Top-25 Poll)
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8:00 p.m. - #1 Indiana Hoosiers host Bryant University Bulldogs
8:30 p.m. - #3 Kentucky Wildcats vs. Maryland Terrapins (at Brooklyn, NY)
7:00 p.m. - #4 Ohio State Buckeyes vs. Marquette Golden Eagles (at Charleston, SC)
8:30 p.m. - #5 Michigan Wolverines host Slippery Rock The Rock
7:00 p.m. - #6 North Carolina State Wolfpack hosts Miami (OH) Redhawks
8:00 p.m. - #7 Kansas Jayhawks host Southeast Missouri State Redhawks
7:00 p.m. - #8 Duke Blue Devils host Georgia State Panthers
8:00 p.m. - #10 Florida Gators vs. Georgetown Hoyas (at Jacksonville, FL)
7:00 p.m. - #12 North Carolina Tar Heels host Gardner-Webb Runnin' Bulldogs
11:00 p.m. - #13 UCLA Bruins host Indiana State Sycamores
5:30 p.m. - #14 Michigan State vs. Connecticut Huskies (at Ramstein, Germany)
8:05 p.m. - #15 Creighton Bluejays host North Texas Mean Green
5:00 p.m. - #18 Baylor Bears host Lehigh Mountain Hawks
9:00 p.m. - #22 Gonzaga Bulldogs host Southern Utah Thunderbirds
7:00 p.m. - #24 Florida State hosts South Alabama Jaguars
8:00 p.m. - #25 Texas Longhorns host Fresno State Bulldogs

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Illinois Football Looks To End Six-Game Losing Streak

In college football action this weekend, Illinois will try to snap its six-game losing streak at home against Minnesota.

NCAA Football (BCS Standings)
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#10 Florida State Seminoles 28, Virginia Tech Hokies 22

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Colts Clobber Jags; Bears Host Texans; Pack Off

>>Colts Clobber Hapless Jaguars

(Jacksonville, FL) -- Andrew Luck had a pair of rushing touchdowns as the Colts clobbered the hapless Jaguars, 27-10, on "Thursday Night Football." Luck passed for 227 yards and an interception for the Colts, who have won three straight to move to 6-and-3. Darius Butler returned an interception 11 yards for a touchdown in the victory. Jacksonville's Cecil Shorts caught a touchdown pass from Chad Henne after starting quarterback Blaine Gabbert was knocked out with a shoulder injury. The Jags had 10 penalties for 115 yards en route to falling to 1-and-8.

>>Bears' Tillman Expected To Play Sunday Night

Chicago Bears star cornerback Charles Tillman says on Twitter that he will play Sunday against the Houston Texans, after all.

Tillman's status had been up in the air after he told Chicago radio station WSCR-AM that he might not be available because his wife, Jackie, is due to give birth.

But in a message to ESPN Radio's "Mike & Mike In The Morning" show, he wrote "god, family, football... Baby is coming Monday don't worry I'll be there Sunday."

This will be the couple's fourth child. Their daughter, Tiana, needed a heart transplant a few months after she was born in 2008.

>>Texans Take On Bears In Battle Of 7-and-1 Teams

(Chicago, IL) -- Week 10's marquee matchup takes place in Chicago as the Houston Texans battle the Bears Sunday night at Soldier Field. Both teams are 7-and-1 on the season. The Texans beat Buffalo last week and have won two straight since their lone loss of the season in Week Six against Green Bay. This begins a stretch of four road games in five weeks for Houston. The Bears put up a season-high 51 points in a 51-20 trouncing of Tennessee in Week Nine. Brandon Marshall had three TD catches and Chicago also returned an interception and blocked punt for scores. The Bears are 4-and-0 at home this season. Their lone loss was a 23-10 road setback to the Packers in Week Two.

>>Rams Look For Rare Road Win Against 49ers

(San Francisco, CA) -- The St. Louis Rams head west to face off with the San Francisco 49ers Sunday at Candlestick Park. The Rams are coming off their bye and looking to regroup after getting drubbed 45-7 by the Patriots in London in Week Eight. After a 3-and-2 start, the Rams have lost three in-a-row to fall to 3-and-5. The 49ers are also coming off their bye week. San Francisco was a 24-3 winner at Arizona in Week Eight and has won four-of-five overall to lead the NFC West at 6-and-2. The Niners will try to avoid looking ahead to next week's home game against 7-and-1 Chicago. San Fran has won seven of the last eight meetings and hasn't lost at home to the Rams since 2007.

>>Packers Enjoy Bye

(Green Bay, WI) -- The Packers are off this weekend as they enjoy their bye. Green Bay enters its idle weekend riding a four-game winning streak. The 6-and-2 Packers will visit the Lions a week from Sunday.

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IHSA Football Quarterfinals This Weekend

The quarterfinal rounds of the IHSA football playoffs are here and several area teams still have hopes of playing in Champaign Thanksgiving weekend.

In Class 1A:

#4 Concord Triopia (10-1) at #1 LeRoy (11-0), Sat., Nov. 10, 1:00 pm
Game 28 — #3 Carrollton (10-1) at #2 Maroa (M.-Forsyth) (10-1) (map), Sat., Nov. 10, 1:30 pm

In Class 3A
#2 Tolono (Unity) (10-1) at #1 Williamsville (11-0), Sat., Nov. 10, 2:00 pm

In Class 4A
#5 Peoria (Notre Dame) (8-3) vs. #2 Rochester (10-1) at Peoria Stadium, Sat., Nov. 10, 6:00 pm

In Class 5a
#2 Morris (10-1) at #5 Washington (9-2), Sat., Nov. 10, 3:00 pm
Game 28 — #4 Chatham Glenwood (9-2) at #3 Springfield Sacred Heart-Griffin (10-1), Sat., Nov. 10, 1:00 pm

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Clinton Veteran To Take Part In Honor Flight To Washington DC

A Clinton veteran will have the distinct honor of taking a trip out to Washington DC this weekend as a part of Veterans Day.

Darvin Volker, a local veteran, will be flying out to Washington DC this weekend as a part of the Central Illinois Honor Flight. November 10th and 11th, 70 World War II veterans will be flown out to Washington DC. Volker says this is a great honor for him to be a part of.

[audio:11912honorflight1.mp3] [/audio]

Normally the honor flight is a 24-hour trip, but this year the veterans on the trip will stay overnight and will fly back Sunday to a Welcome Home Celebration for the veterans. Volker is a Marine Veteran flying out with a fellow Marine Veteran and is really looking forward to this trip.

[audio:11912honorflight2.mp3] [/audio]

Those interested in attending the Welcome Home Celebration are invited to do so. It is Sunday evening at 6:30 pm at the Decatur Airport. The Welcome Home Celebration is designed to be the welcome home they missed at the end of World War II.

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Barn Quilts of DeWitt County Hosting Final 2012 Tour; Adding 10 New Quilts

If you are seeking entertainment for this weekend, the Barn Quilts of DeWitt County is taking their final tour of the 2012 year.

Two tours were schedule for this year, the first was August 12, and Tourism Director with the Clinton Area Chamber of Commerce and Tourism Bureau, Carolyn Sugg explains the first tour included more activities. The Barn Quilts of DeWitt County are hosting their second tour of the season tomorrow afternoon. Sugg notes this tour will include seeing each barn quilt, however, afterwards, attendees are encouraged to stick around the Clinton area for business open houses.

[audio:11912barntour1.mp3] [/audio]

Last year was the first year for the Barn Quilts of DeWitt County, and in the inaugural year, they had ten barn quilts around DeWitt County. This year, Sugg explains they have added ten quilts, and those are on local businesses and other barns in rural portions of the area.

[audio:11912barntour2.mp3] [/audio]

This second tour of the year is going to feature all of the new quilts, and then a few of the original ten. Sugg explains their goal is to create a natural driving trail so when people come to see the quilts on non-tour dates, they can drive around and see them without having to go out of their way for one, or do any back-tracking.

[audio:11912barntour3.mp3] [/audio]

The tour is this Saturday from 9 am to 11:30 am. Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 the day of. There will also be door prizes given away throughout the day as well. Tickets can be purchased at the Clinton Chamber of Commerce, Country Junction, The Loft, Quilters Delight, Flower Corner, Country Church Craft Mall.

You can visit www.barnquiltsofdewittcounty.com or you call 935-3364 for more information.

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2014 Race In Illinois Could Be Ugly

Super PAC spending in the legislative races this year could be an indication of what we'll see in 2014, during the gubernatorial campaign. David Morrison, with the Illinois Campaign for Political Reform, says things could get pretty ugly.

[audio:rddPAC1.mp3] [/audio]

Morrison adds these groups don't usually promote a positive message.

[audio:rddPAC2.mp3] [/audio]

Super PACs' play a big role in creating a negative tone within campaigns. They spent five figures on some candidates this time around and that was only on a regional or local office, not a statewide office. Because the Super PACs often outspend individual candidates, they actually have the power to define the election, or the candidate, in the minds of voters.

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Gov. Quinn Downplays Rejection of Pension Amendment

Gov. Pat Quinn played down voters' rejection of a proposed amendment to the Illinois constitution that would have made it harder to expand public employee retirement benefits.

A day after the elections, Quinn says he remains optimistic he can get lawmakers to agree on a plan for bringing down spiraling costs of pensions for government and other public sector workers.

The governor sought to separate the two, saying the proposed amendment was not focused on the wholesale overhaul of the pension system that he has sought.

Quinn says a complete overhaul is a necessary sacrifice in order to balance the state's books and ensure public funds keep flowing to essential services like schools and police departments.

Quinn told reporters Wednesday he'll be "working on that issue night and day."

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Political Scientist: Democrats Will Have To Own Problems

The new legislative boundaries worked in the Democrats favor in yesterday's election. But political scientist Kent Redfield says the unprecedented majority in both chambers next year, could be a good or bad thing.

[audio:rddMajority1.mp3] [/audio]

Redfield adds the Democrats will have to own up to fixing all the problems that are plaguing the state.

[audio:rddMajority2.mp3] [/audio]

Lawmakers will be back in Springfield in a few weeks for their veto session. Some fear several big issues could come up for vote because the lawmakers who didn't win re-election may vote on them, because they don't have to account for their vote with constituents. The new legislators will be sworn in next January.

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Davis Wants To Put Politics Aside And Move On

Republican Rodney Davis says he's confident in his victory, despite the fact that David Gill won't concede.

[audio:rddConcede1.mp3] [/audio]

Davis admits he and David Gill's campaigns got dirty and admits he wants to change some things about the elections process.

[audio:rddConcede2.mp3] [/audio]

Davis feels lawmakers need to move forward and embrace bipartisanship.

[audio:rddConcede3.mp3] [/audio]

Davis was declared the winner in the 13th District race last night but never got a phone call from Gill. That's because Gill says the race isn't over. He says there are thousands of votes that haven't been counted yet, particularly in Macon County. He believes he'll actually come out on top once all the votes are tallied.

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McLean County Voters Eliminate Recorder's Office

Officials in McLean County are moving forward with plans to have the county clerk's office take over the functions now held by the recorder's office.

Voters approved a referendum to eliminate the recorder's office. That's a move opposed by McLean County Recorder Lee Newcom, who was re-elected Tuesday in an uncontested race.

Newcom says voters didn't get enough information about the subject and he calls Tuesday's vote "a shot in the dark." He says he worries the county's 100-year-old records won't be properly maintained.

The referendum eliminates Newcom's position as of Dec. 31, 2013.

McLean County Clerk Kathy Michael says she's looking forward to the transition process so the county can train staff and get a budget in place to combine the two offices.

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DeWitt County Home To Independent Therapist

Clinton is now the new home to a professional counselor.

Sue Keogh began her psychotherapy practice in Clinton a little over a month ago. Keogh has over 20 years of clinical experience working with adolescents, adults, and couples. Keogh comes to the Clinton area from Bloomington/Normal.

[audio:11812keogh1.mp3] [/audio]

Coming to the Clinton community was appealing for Keogh because she likes it's location. She hopes to serve the Clinton community and the other communities around the area and DeWitt County.

[audio:11812keogh2.mp3] [/audio]

Keogh will work with a wide variety of patients. Her primary specializations are working with depression, anxiety, trauma, addictions, and couples and marital counseling. Keogh says she can also with people who are experience grief from divorce, the loss of a loved one, and other types of grief.

[audio:11812keogh3.mp3] [/audio]

Keogh's office is located at 220 South Grant Street in Clinton. She can be reached at 309-532-3390. Her office hours inlcude Monday through Friday daytime and evening appointments.

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New Leaf Vac System Making For More Productive Leaf Clean Up Season

The fall cleanup season is in full swing as area residents spend their free hours raking, blowing and sweeping leaves.

Clinton City officials are reminding residents their leaves can be picked up by the city's Public Works Department. Public Work Director, Steve Lobb explains they have divided the city up into five sections, and they will work in each section until it is complete.

[audio:11812leafpickup1.mp3] [/audio]

Clean up this year for City workers has been much more efficient thanks to a new piece of equipment. Lobb explains they have a new leaf vac system that can go on the back of a regular city truck, and makes hauling it around much easier, so they can hit more houses in less time.

[audio:11812leafpickup2.mp3] [/audio]

The efficiency and frequency of leaf pick up in a certain portion of the city is dependent on the weather. Lobb says in a good weather week, they can hit the entire town in a week. He notes however, if it rains a lot, they may have to put off their pick up for a day or two to allow the leaves to dry out.

[audio:11812leafpickup3.mp3] [/audio]

Crews will continue to rotate zones of the city for the next couple of weeks. Lobb says it all depends on how many leaves are left, but he speculates after Thanksgiving or the early part of December would be when they would wrap up leaf clean up for the year.

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Chargers Fined By NFL

The NFL fined the San Diego Chargers $20-thousand on Wednesday for failing to immediately give up a towel that had a grip-enhancing substance on it.  The incident in question occurred in a game against the Broncos on October 15th.  The NFL released a statement saying the Chargers did not violate any NFL competitive rules, but was instituting the fine due to the initial lack of cooperation from the team.  The NFL went on to say that the "use of towels or other products that contain any type of adhesive substance is now prohibited." 

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MLB End of Year Award Finalists Announced

>>MLB Manager Of The Year Finalists Released

(Undated) -- The Baseball Writers' Association of America released the finalists for the American and National League Manager of the Year awards on Wednesday. Bob Melvin from Oakland, Buck Showalter of Baltimore and White Sox skipper Robin Ventura represent the AL. World Series winning manager Bruce Bochy, Cincinnati's Dusty Baker and Davey Johnson from Washington are the managers from the NL. Both winners will be announced on Tuesday.

>>MLB MVP Finalists Released

(Undated) -- The Baseball Writers' Association of America released the finalists for the American and National League Most Valuable Player Awards on Wednesday. Triple Crown winner Miguel Cabrera of Detroit and Angels rookie phenom Mike Trout headline the AL finalists. They are joined by Adrian Beltre and Josh Hamilton of Texas and Robinson Cano from the Yankees. Ryan Braun of the Brewers is looking to become the first back-to-back winner in the NL since Albert Pujols in 2008 and 2009. Chase Headley from San Diego, Andrew McCutchen of Pittsburgh and catchers Yadier Molina of St. Louis and Buster Posey from the world champion Giants join Braun in the NL. Hall of Famer Johnny Bench is the last catcher to win the National League MVP in 1972. Both winners will be announced on Thursday, November 15th.

>>MLB Rookie Of The Year Finalists Released

(Undated) -- The Baseball Writers' Association of America released the finalists for the American and National League Rookie of the Year awards on Wednesday. Yoenis Cespedes of Oakland, Yu Darvish from Texas and Mike Trout from the Angels are up for the American League honor. Cincinnati's Todd Frazier, Bryce Harper of Washington and Wade Miley of Arizona are the finalists on the National League side. Both winners will be announced on Monday.

>>MLB Cy Young Award Finalists Released

(Undated) -- The Baseball Writers' Association of America released the finalists for the American and National League Cy Young Awards on Wednesday. Reigning winner and AL MVP Justin Verlander represents the Tigers. He is joined by two 20-game winners in Jered Weaver from the Angels and David Price from Tampa Bay. The reigning winner on the NL side is also back. Dodgers starter Clayton Kershaw is joined by knuckleballer R.A. Dickey of the Mets and Gio Gonzalez from Washington. Both winners will be announced on Wednesday.

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Pippen Says Obama Has 'Smooth Game'

 width=Former Chicago Bulls star Scottie Pippen says President Barack Obama has a "smooth game" on the basketball court.

Pippen described playing basketball with the president Tuesday afternoon in a story on the Chicago Bulls website. He played on Obama's team in an Election Day game complete with referees and a running clock. Pippen and Obama's team won the game.

Pippen says the president was "very easy to approach" and says Obama isn't an overly aggressive player, probably because he doesn't want to get hurt.

Pippen says it was the first time he met the president and called it "a very special experience."

Pippen was a member of 6 Chicago Bulls championship teams. He is now a senior advisor to Chicago Bulls President and COO Michael Reinsdorf.

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Bulls Host Thunder Tonight

 width=The Bulls are back in action tonight as they host the Oklahoma City Thunder at the United Center. Chicago is 1-and-1 so far on its five-game homestand. The Bulls knocked off Orlando 99-93 on Tuesday after opening the stand with an 89-82 loss to New Orleans. They are now 3-and-1 on the season. The Thunder are 2-and-2. Tipoff is at 7:00 p.m.

NBA
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Phoenix Suns 117, Charlotte Bobcats 110
Atlanta Hawks 89, Indiana Pacers 86
Miami Heat 103, Brooklyn Nets 73
Boston Celtics 100, Washington Wizards 94 (OT)
Denver Nuggets 93, Houston Rockets 87
Philadelphia 76ers 77, New Orleans Hornets 62
Minnesota Timberwolves 90, Orlando Magic 75
Memphis Grizzlies 108, Milwaukee Bucks 90
Dallas Mavericks 109, Toronto Raptors 104
Utah Jazz 95, Los Angeles Lakers 86
Sacramento Kings 105, Detroit Pistons 103
Golden State Warriors 106, Cleveland Cavaliers 96
Los Angeles Clippers 106, San Antonio Spurs 84

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Colts Notes

 width=>>Colts' Luck Wins AFC Weekly Honors

(New York, NY) -- Colts quarterback Andrew Luck has been named AFC Offensive Player of the Week for Week Nine. Luck threw for a single-game rookie record 433 yards with two touchdowns in Indianapolis' 23-20 win over Miami last Sunday. Luck also tied Peyton Manning's rookie record with his fourth game with over 300 yards passing.

>>Colts' Luck Shaves Head In Support Of Pagano

(Indianapolis, IN) -- Colts quarterback Andrew Luck is sporting a different look ahead of tonight's game at Jacksonville. The rookie signal-caller is one of nearly 30 players on the team to have shaved their head in support of head coach Chuck Pagano, who is being treated for leukemia.

>>Surging Colts Seek Revenge Against Floundering Jags

(Jacksonville, FL) -- The Indianapolis Colts are in Jacksonville to take on the Jaguars in this week's Thursday night matchup at EverBank Field. Riding the rookie arm of quarterback Andrew Luck, the Colts have won three straight to sit at 5-and-3 overall. Indianapolis beat Miami 23-20 this past Sunday with Luck throwing for a rookie-record 433 yards. Reggie Wayne leads the NFL with 835 receiving yards this season. The Jaguars have just one win this season, a Week Three victory at Indianapolis. Jacksonville has since lost five in-a-row to fall to 1-and-7, including a 31-14 loss to Detroit this past Sunday. The Jags are 0-and-4 at home. A fifth straight home loss would be a franchise record.

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Bears Notes

 width=>>Bears CB Tillman May Miss Game For Birth of Child

Chicago Bears star cornerback Charles Tillman might miss Sunday's game against the Houston Texans because of the birth of his daughter.

Tillman tells Chicago radio station WSCR-AM that he might not be available because his wife, Jackie, is due to give birth to a girl. She will be the couple's fourth child. Their daughter, Tiana, needed a heart transplant after she was born in 2008.

Tillman says if the baby is born Sunday, "I think I'm going to have to be at the hospital."

Tillman is making a case for defensive player of the year, and he forced four fumbles last Sunday at Tennessee. His teammates on the NFC North leaders expressed their support for him before practice on Wednesday. Tillman was not available for comment.

>>Cutler Says Done Expect Offense To Match D

The idea that the Chicago Bears' offense will match their jaw-dropping defense this season just might be a little far-fetched.

Jay Cutler says it's "not going to happen." The quarterback says the offense is "eight, nine years behind those guys" because the Bears have been running the same defense "a long time."

For all the hype coming into the season, the offense remains a work in progress. That hasn't stopped the Bears (7-1, No. 3 In AP Pro32) from grabbing the NFC North lead heading into Sunday's showdown with AFC South leader Houston.

It just hasn't happened quite the way they envisioned.

While the defense continues to dominate, an offense that many thought had the potential to be explosive isn't quite living up to the hype.

>>Bears' Urlacher Wins NFC Weekly Award

(New York, NY) -- Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher was named NFC Defensive Player of the Week for Week Nine, while teammate Sherrick McManis earned Special Teams honors. Urlacher racked up seven tackles, a forced fumble and a 46-yard interception return for a touchdown in last Sunday's 51-20 rout of Tennessee. McManis had two tackles and a blocked punt that was returned for a score.

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Report for 11-8

November 8, 2012

 

Jail Population: 72

Summons Served: 5

Warrant Arrests: 1

 

Janet E. Kinder,60, Maroa, was arrested and charged with Failure to Appear. Kinder, being un-able to post the necessary bond, remains lodged in the DeWitt County Jail.

 

 

ALL SUSPECTS ARE PRESUMED INNOCENT UNTIL FOUND GUILTY IN A COURT OF LAW.

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Clinton High School Planning Day of Activities To Honor Veterans; Updating Wall of Valor

Clinton schools students will spend the day Friday honoring the Veterans of the community.

One of the big things they have going on is honoring the veterans through the high school's 'Wall of Valor'. Principal of Clinton High School Dr. Candice Swift says they are very excited about this. With the renovations that have gone on at the high school, they are moving the updated Wall of Valor to the sports entrance at the high school.

[audio:11912wallofvalor1.mp3] [/audio]

29 new photos of alumni who are Veterans will be placed on the wall. Dr. Swift explains with continued renovations to the area where the Wall of Valor was originally housed, it did not make much sense to keep it there. She feels putting it in a high traffic area, like the sports entrance, will get it and the veterans on it more much deserved attention.

[audio:11912wallofvalor2.mp3] [/audio]

Updating the Wall of Valor proved to be a challenging task. Dr. Swift explains it took quite an effort to obtain information about the veterans of Clinton High School alumni. Dr. Swift notes it took quite a community effort to get almost 30 new names and photos on the wall.

[audio:11912wallofvalor3.mp3] [/audio]

Dr. Swift encourages anyone with a veteran who attended Clinton High School that would like their name and picture put on the Wall of Valor to submit to them a picture of the person with their name, and they will add them to it.

The Veterans Day festivities at Clinton Schools includes a breakfast for veterans Friday morning, a keynote speaker at the Jr. High in the afternoon, and a reception for the Veterans at Clinton High School will take place to conclude the day.

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Illinois Races Bring In Big Cash

Illinois candidates vying for a legislative seat have raised about 40-million dollars in their efforts to win. David Morrison with the Illinois Campaign for Political Reform says so much cash is coming in because of the new legislative map.

[audio:rddMoneyELX1.mp3] [/audio]

Morrison adds even those who don’t have an opponent are spending a lot of money on the campaign.

[audio:rddMoneyELX2.mp3] [/audio]

All 177 legislative seats are up for grabs. Morrison says labor unions, caucuses, corporations, and private donors have all contributed to the races. The senate race in the 48th district, which includes Springfield, has raised nearly two and a half million bucks. The highest in the House was in northern Illinois’ District 52, where the candidates raised about 1.7 million dollars.. That doesn’t include money that spent on ads, paid for by Super Pacs’s.

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Illinois Pension Benefit Amendment Fails

A proposed amendment to the Illinois Constitution that would have made it more difficult to expand public employee retirement benefits has failed.

With about 90% of the vote reported on Wednesday morning the proposed amendment had support from 56% of Illinoisans who voted on the measure. But that fell short of the two criteria needed for passage.

The measure needed either three-fifths of Illinoisans who voted on the measure, or 50% of the total number of votes cast in Tuesday's election. Nearly 5 million people voted in the election.

The amendment would require a three-fifths vote instead of a simple majority for any pension increase. To the consternation of public employee unions, cutting benefits would still require just a simple majority.

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Gill Won't Concede

Democrat David Gill says the numbers in his hotly contested U.S. House race are too close for him to concede

The Associated Press declared Republican Rodney Davis the winner in the 13th District. With nearly all precincts reporting the Republican had more than a 5,100-vote lead.

A Gill spokeswoman says they're waiting for all the numbers to come in. He initially faced longtime Republican Rep. Tim Johnson of Urbana. But just weeks after an easy primary win in the new district Johnson abruptly announced that he wouldn't seek re-election.

Republicans chose Davis to fill the place on the ballot.

Davis was a member of Rep. John Shimkus' staff and lives in Taylorville.

Gill is a Bloomington physician who challenged Johnson in past elections.

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Davis In Awe of Support In Congressional Win

Republican Rodney Davis says he's in awe of the support he received in his win over Democrat David Gill for a U.S. House seat in central Illinois.

In a statement, Davis says the campaign was about serious issues facing the country and candidates who were serious about solving them.

Gill initially faced Republican incumbent Tim Johnson of Urbana in the 13th District. But weeks after an easy primary win in the new district Johnson announced that he wouldn't seek re-election.

Republicans picked Davis to fill the place on the ballot.

Davis was a member of Rep. John Shimkus' staff and lives in Taylorville. Gill is a Bloomington physician who challenged Johnson in past elections.

The race was among the most closely-watched in Illinois.

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Clinton Community Educational Foundation Seeking Board Members

One local group aimed at benefiting the school district of the community is seeking volunteers for their Board of Directors.

The Clinton Community Educational Foundation serves as a way to supplement un-budgeted items for the Clinton School district through their classroom grants and other donations. Claudine Wargel is a member of the Foundation and she says being a board member is not a large time commitment. They meet once a month for an hour to an hour and a half.

[audio:11612ccefmembers1.mp3] [/audio]

Wargel feels the role the CCEF plays in the Clinton School District is very important. She says board meetings may consist of reviewing applications for their classroom grants. It may also consist of hearing needs from those inside the schools as well.

[audio:11612ccefmembers2.mp3] [/audio]

Becoming a member of the Board is not the only way to get involved with the Education Foundation. According to Wargel, they will put together committees for various needs the Foundation may have. Whether it be planning fundraising events, review applications for their scholarship program, or reviewing applications for their classroom grants, Wargel says it's a great way to keep involved in what is happening at the school district.

[audio:11612ccefmembers3.mp3] [/audio]

Wargel encourages anyone interested in giving a few hours a month to the Foundation to give her a call at 217-944-2549. She would be happy to discuss ways to become involved with the Board or with their committees.

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DeWitt County Job Situation Looking Good

The DeWitt County economy is looking good these days.

Several area businesses have opened over the past several months. Along with several businesses opening up, one business in northern DeWitt County is going through a rather large expansion. Ruth Stauffer, Executive Director of the DeWitt County Development Council explains Syngenta of DeWitt County, located near Wapella is going through a rather large expansion here. She adds this expansion is going to add several jobs to the area.

[audio:11712newjobs1.mp3] [/audio]

On top of adding jobs, Stauffer is excited at the quality of jobs being added. She explains Syngenta is a research facility, with several PhD jobs and many more employees with Masters Degrees. She adds this will not only bring in new jobs but new residents to the community.

[audio:11712newjobs2.mp3] [/audio]

Along with Syngenta's expansion, there are other new businesses opened up, and opening up in the county. One business that is simply changing hands is The Lighthouse Thrift Store, which Stauffer feels is going to be a great transition.

[audio:11712newjobs3.mp3] [/audio]

Stauffer notes, while there's not always new businesses opening, there is often times businesses that leave, or change hands, such as The Lighthouse Thrift Store. She notes there are several businesses in the county that have left, but fortunately there is are businesses stepping in to fill the void of those other businesses leaving.

[audio:11712newjobs4.mp3] [/audio]

New businesses over the past several months that have opened, relocated, or changed hands include Jason Frantz, State Farm Insurance Agent, Round Again Sports, West Innovations, Crossfit Influence, The Lighthouse Thrift Store, and soon to come, Sav-Mor Pharmacy.
Stauffer estimates close to 50 jobs have been created by the new businesses and expansion happening in the county.

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GM Meetings Get Underway In California; Baseball Notes

>>MLB GM Meetings Begin Today

(Indian Wells, CA) -- Major League Baseball's Hot Stove season will get a push with the start of the General Managers Meetings today. GM's from all 30 clubs are slated to gather at the Hyatt Grand Champions hotel in Indian Wells, California. It will be an opportunity to discuss trade opportunities and gauge the free-agent market ahead of next month's Winter Meetings in Nashville, Tennessee. The marquee free agents this year are outfielder Josh Hamilton and pitcher Zack Greinke.

>>Mozeliak At GM Meetings

(Indian Wells, CA) -- The Cardinals' John Mozeliak is in Indian Wells, California today for the start of the General Managers Meetings. GM's from all 30 clubs are gathered to discuss potential trades and gauge the free-agent market ahead of next month's Winter Meetings in Nashville.

>>Rangers' Darvish Won't Pitch In WBC

(Arlington, TX) -- Texas Rangers pitcher Yu Darvish won't participate in the upcoming World Baseball Classic. The All-Star helped Japan defeat South Korea in the WBC championship game in 2009. Darvish went 16-and-9 with a 3.90 ERA while throwing 191 innings over 29 regular season starts this season for the Rangers. It was his first season in the majors after leaving Japan's Nippon Professional Baseball League. The 26-year-old is considered one of the contenders for the American League Rookie of the Year award. Japan has won both World Baseball Classic's after defeating Cuba in the title game in 2006.

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NFL Notes

>>Bears' Knox To Miss Rest of Season

Chicago Bears receiver Johnny Knox remains on the physically unable to perform list and will miss the entire season because of a back injury.

He had a deadline Tuesday to return to practice from the list. That didn't happen.

Knox sustained a gruesome back injury against Seattle last season and needed surgery to stabilize a vertebra. He has 133 receptions for 2,214 yards in three seasons and has been a contributor on special teams with 55 kickoff returns for 1,506 yards.

>>Colts Players Shave Heads For Coach Pagano

(Indianapolis, IN) -- A number of Colts are making some appearance changes to honor head coach Chuck Pagano. Over two dozen players and many personnel have shaved their heads to support the ailing head coach. Pagano has been battling leukemia and recently started a second round of chemotherapy after doctors announced the cancer is in remission.

>>Matthews Status For Lions Game Not Known

(Green Bay, WI) -- Clay Matthews suffered a left hamstring injury in the Packers' win over the Cardinals this past Sunday. It is not currently known how long he could be out, but with Green Bay on a bye he has two full weeks to get ready for the next game. The Packers hit the road to play the Lions on November 18th.

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Pippen Plays Hoops With Obama On Election Day

Former Bulls forward Scottie Pippen joined President Barack Obama yesterday for a pickup basketball game.  Pippen was joined by other politicians as well as Obama's brother-in-law, Oregon State basketball coach Craig Robinson.  The President also played basketball on Election Day in 2008.

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Bulls Hand Magic First Loss

Luol Deng scored 15 of his 23 points in the second half to lead the Chicago Bulls to a 99-93 win over Orlando on Tuesday night, the Magic's first loss of the season.

Deng and Nate Robinson keyed a 15-2 second-half burst when Chicago turned a 5-point deficit into an 8-point lead. Robinson hit two straight jumpers to put Chicago ahead 74-70 early in the fourth, the Bulls' first lead since midway through the third period.

Joakim Noah had 20 points, nine rebounds and five blocks for Chicago, while Robinson added 11 points and six assists off the bench. Robinson's layup with 2:35 to play put Chicago up 91-81, its biggest lead of the game.

Arron Afflalo led the Magic with 28 points, 19 in the second half. E'Twaun Moore added a career-high 17 points.

NBA
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Oklahoma City Thunder 108, Toronto Raptors 88
Denver Nuggets 109, Detroit Pistons 97

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New Legislative Maps Help Dems Win Big In Illinois

Democrats in Illinois literally mapped out their victories in the state's hotly contested congressional races.

The party won most of the big prizes in districts that had been redrawn to squeeze Republicans out of their districts or throw them into Democrat-friendly territory. Democrats controlled the once-a-decade map-drawing process because they have control of the state Legislature and the governor's office.

Democrats picked up four House seats, including three held by GOP freshmen, on a night President Barack Obama scored an easy home-state victory en route to re-election

The congressional wins included Iraq War veteran Tammy Duckworth's over tea party Congressman Joe Walsh. Freshman GOP Congressman Bob Dold's also lost to Brad Schneider.

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DeWitt County Voter Turn Out Up For 2012 General Election; Early Voting Sets Record

It was a solid voter turn out for the 2012 general election in DeWitt County.

With very hotly contested local races, state races and one of the most important Presidential elections in the nation's history, voter turnout for DeWitt County was very strong. Dana Smith, County Clerk for DeWitt County says they had a record turn out for early voting. She feels having that convenience prior to election day may be something a lot of people are getting used to.

[audio:11812earlyvoting1.mp3] [/audio]

During the primary in March, there were some ballot issues that caused the results to be finalized very late. Smith says they did not have a problem with that for this election, but she notes, it seems each election there is something small that always seems to go wrong.

[audio:11812earlyvoting2.mp3] [/audio]

The results from Tuesday night for DeWitt County races are not final yet. Smith explains she can still receive absentee ballots for 14 days if post-marked in time. She says after the 14 days and the absentees are all submitted, she will then count them and finalize the numbers.

[audio:11812earlyvoting3.mp3] [/audio]

This 2012 election was one that was hotly contested from local races, to state and federal races. Several County Board District winners won by incredibly small margins, and with absentee ballots still to come in, it could certainly change the results Regional Radio News reported Tuesday night.

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UPDATED: Local Election Night Results

The DeWitt County Board will have some new faces come December.

In District A, Incumbents Sherry Brown (Rep.) and Camille Redman (Dem.) will be joined by Republican, Dan Ballenger. Redman and Brown both had 27.2% of the vote with Redman leading Brown by only one vote , 948-947. Ballenger had 22.9 % with 796 votes. Republican Larry Schumm recieved the least amount of votes with 788.

District B will have some new faces representing them. Republicans, Mark Garnder and Tom Pruser will join incumbent, Terry Ferguson on the board. Ferguson, also a Republican, recieved 827 votes, just edging out Independent George Wissmiller, who had 826 votes. Gardner and Pruser received 1136 and 1118 votes respectively. That amounts to 25.1 % for Gardner and 24.7% for Pruser. Also, incumbent Dana Evans did not retain his seat with only 617 votes.

District C will have a drastically new look on the County Board. Challengers, Terry Hoffman, Ron Savage Jr., and David Newberg, all Republicans, will take seats on the board as Democrat Incumbents Scott Nimmo and Rusty Davenport failed to retain their seats. Challenging Democrat, Mike Bray also failed to win a seat.

District D will have a new face, as Democratic challenger Rita Sue May defeated incumbent, Melonie Tilley. Joining May will be incumbents Kelly Riggs and Pete Dougherty.

In other area races, running unopposed, State's Attorny Candidate Karle Koritz will be the successor to his father's office, Pam Barnes will become the new Circuit Clerk, and Randy Rice will be the county's next Coroner, replacing Alex Calvert.

According to County Clerk, Dana Smith, there are still fourteen days still to receive absentee ballots which means that these results are not final.

Other state election results from Tuesday include the 13th Congressional district race, which as of early this morning had Rodney Davis ahead by almost 300 votes with 99% of precincts reporting.

In the 51st State Senate Race, Republican Chapin Rose ran uncontested.

In the 101st State House District, Republican Incumbent Bill Mitchell Ran unopposed and remains seated in the Illinois House.

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Antique Gun Show Planned At Metamora Courthouse

History buffs may be interested in two events planned for the Metamora Courthouse State Historic Site in central Illinois - one on antique firearms and another on Lincoln's legal career.

The Illinois Historic Preservation Agency announced the events Monday. An antique gun show is planned for Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Gunsmith and author Curtis Johnson will show restored shotguns and rifles made by early Illinois gunsmiths. Admission is free, but guests are encouraged to donate $10 to the Woodford County Historical Society's Metamora Courthouse Fund.

On Monday, attorney Guy Fraker will visit from 6 to 8 p.m. to speak and sign copies of his book "Lincoln's Ladder to the Presidency." The book examines Lincoln's work on the old Illinois 8th Judicial Circuit, which included the Metamora Courthouse.

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House Candidates In Central Illinois Make Final Stops

Candidates running for the U.S. House in central Illinois are making a flurry of last-minute campaigning stops.

The race in the 13th Congressional District has been contentious and characterized by mudslinging TV ads paid for by sources outside the campaigns. Longtime Republican Congressman Tim Johnson announced his retirement shortly after winning his primary.

Both Republican Rodney Davis and Democrat David Gill planned several stops Monday.

Davis is expected in Normal and Urbana with first term Republican Congressman Adam Kinzinger. Davis is from Taylorville and is a former aide to Republican Congressman John Shimkus.

Gill was scheduled Monday in Edwardsville, Champaign, Decatur and Springfield. The physician from Bloomington appeared in Decatur with U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin over the weekend.

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More Than One Million Votes Already Cast In Illinois

Illinois voters showed up in large numbers to cast a ballot before Election Day. Jim Tenuto, with the state's Board of Elections, says more than one million people won't have to stand in line tomorrow.

[audio:rddEarly1.mp3] [/audio]

Tenuto says all indications point to a lighter voter turnout than 2008, when nearly 72-percent of registered voters cast a ballot. Some early voters have reportedly stood in line for two or three hours to cast their ballot.

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Gas Prices Low Despite Sandy

Gas prices are down in Illinois, despite concerns they would go up after Hurricane Sandy. GasBuddy.com's Gregg Laskowski says gas prices typically drop this time of year.

[audio:rddGasPricesNW1a.mp3] [/audio]

Laskowski says he's not surprised that gas is down after Sandy. He says on average, gas is still six cents higher now than this time last year. And, given volatility in the Great Lakes area, some drivers may even be seeing an increase in the price at the pump.

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Social Security Offers Financial Assistance For Low Income Medicare Part D Recipients

As reported yesterday, open enrollment is going on now for Medicare Part D.

Whether you are looking to get into the program for the first time, or looking to change your coverage, now is the time do that. However, for some seniors, the costs associated with Medicare Part D can be too overwhelming. Jack Meyers with Social Security says they provide assistance to low income seniors who may need help in covering some of those expenses associated with Medicare Part D that can save seniors around $4-thousand a year.

[audio:11612medicareassist1.mp3] [/audio]

There are earnings and asset limits to this financial assistance. Meyers explains the limits apply for both income and assets, and are garnered towards a single person, or a married couple living together.

[audio:11612medicareassist2.mp3] [/audio]

Meyers points out for seniors concerned over the value of their homes or vehicles, Social Security does not have to count your home if you own it and live in it. He also says vehicles are not considered a part of your assets either. Assets include the likes of bank accounts, retirement accounts, and stocks or bonds.

[audio:11612medicareassist3.mp3] [/audio]

Meyers says the application process is not difficult. The only thing you need to know is your assets and your income. You can apply two different ways, you can go to www.socialsecurity.gov or can call Social Security at 1-800-772-1213.

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City of Clinton Conducted Second Traffic Study Because of 'Unclear Direction' Of School District

In October, over $10-dollars were spent on traffic studies surrounding the site of the new Clinton Elementary School.

The Clinton City Council and the Clinton Board of Education both engaged in separate traffic studies, in what seemed to be a miscommunication between the two sides. The traffic study was requested by City officials, and Commissioner of Streets and Public Improvements, Nan Crang explains, in attending the public meetings regarding the site of the new elementary school, she and Mayor Carolyn Peters voiced their opinions at those meetings.

[audio:11612citystudy1.mp3] [/audio]

The city had many concerns over the site of the new school. Commissioner Crang explains one of their concerns was the amount of students that would be at the school. Enrollment is estimated to begin at a little over 500 students, but the maximum enrollment at the school could be upwards of 700.

[audio:11612citystudy2.mp3] [/audio]

Once the city requested the study be done, the district asked about what a study would cost. The city responded, and the district began investigating into their own study and it's cost. Commissioner Crang explains, the Farnsworth Group, the City's engineering firm, was unclear of the details, and because of that and the unclear direction of the district at that time, the city entered into their study.

[audio:11612citystudy3.mp3] [/audio]

Both studies have been reviewed by City officials and school officials. No major recommendations to the construction of the site are needed.

Nan Crang's statement:

[audio:crangstatement.mp3] [/audio]

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Mabry Promoted To Replace McGwire

The Cardinals have promoted John Mabry to hitting coach after the departure of Mark McGwire.  McGwire announced last week he was leaving to take the same position with the Los Angeles Dodgers.  St. Louis also promoted Blaise Ilsley to bullpen coach after spending the last five years in the same spot with Triple-A Memphis. 

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Bulls Host Magic Tonight

The Bulls welcome the Orlando Magic to United Center this evening. Chciago is 2-and-1 following Saturday's 89-82 loss to New Orleans. The Magic come in at 2-and-0 on the young season.

NBA
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New York Knicks 110, Philadelphia 76ers 88
Miami Heat 124, Phoenix Suns 99
Minnesota Timberwolves 107, Brooklyn Nets 96
Memphis Grizzlies 103, Utah Jazz 94
San Antonio Spurs 101, Indiana Pacers 79
Dallas Mavericks 114, Portland Trail Blazers 91
Sacramento Kings 94, Golden State Warriors 92
Cleveland Cavaliers 108, Los Angeles Clippers 101

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Bears, Packers, Rams Notes; MNF Recap

>>Schedule Gets Rough For Bears

The Chicago Bears breezed through the first half of their schedule. Now, it's time to buckle down.

The Bears are in good shape at the moment leading the NFC North at 7-1, but the schedule is about to take a tougher turn.

Houston visits Sunday night in a matchup of 2 of the league's best teams, and then comes a game at San Francisco next week.

To that, coach Lovie Smith says, bring it on.

He says the Bears "embrace this national stage" and insists they haven't peaked.

They sure looked good dismantling Tennessee, scoring their most points since 1980 on their way to a 51-20 win that saw Charles Tillman force four fumbles.

>>Bears Gather Following Dominating Win

(Lake Forest, IL) -- The Bears are collecting themselves following Sunday's dominant victory over the Titans in Nashville. Chicago moved to 7-and-1 on the year by blowing away the Titans, 51-20. The Bears will gear up this week for Sunday's cruicial Sunday night battle with the 7-and-1 Houston Texans at Solider Field.

>>Rams Get Back To Work

(Earth City, MO) -- The Rams are back to work today in preparation for Sunday's game at San Francisco. St. Louis enjoyed the bye this past weekend following a 45-7 loss to the Patriots in London on October 28th. The Rams expect wide receiever Danny Amendola to return from his shoulder injury this week.

>>Colts Gear Up For Jags

(Indianapolis, IN) -- The Colts have just two more days to prepare for Thursday night's battle against the Jaguars in Jacksonville. Indianapolis moved to 5-and-3 Sunday with a 23-20 win over the Dolphins. The Jags announced yesterday that running back Maurice Jones-Drew would not return from injury in time to play Thursday.

>>Packers Have Bye Week

(Green Bay, WI) -- The Packers have this week off due to their bye. Green Bay has won three in-a-row following a 31-17 home win over on Sunday. The Packers are now 6-and-3 on the season, a game-and-a-half behind NFC North-leading Chicago. Minnesota sits in third place at 5-and-4, while Detroit is last at 4-and-4.

>>Saints Shut Down Eagles

(New Orleans, LA) -- Drew Brees passed for 239 yards and two touchdowns as the Saints shut down the sloppy Eagles, 28-13. Jimmy Graham and Marques Colston had touchdown grabs for the Saints, who improved to 3-and-5. Patrick Robinson returned an interception 99 yards for a score and the Saints' defense had seven sacks in the victory. Michael Vick threw for 272 yards, a touchdown and an interception for Philadelphia, which dropped to 3-and-5. LeSean McCoy rushed for 119 yards, while Desean Jackson had a 77-yard touchdown catch in the loss.

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Illini QB Taking A Beating This Season

Illinois has given up more sacks than any other Big Ten team this fall and quarterback Nathan Scheelhaase has paid the price.

Most of the 32 sacks have come against Scheelhaase. And the junior has missed several games with injuries.

Illinois coach Tim Beckman said Monday that Illinois limited its offense to protect his quarterback.

The Illini (2-7, 0-5 Big Ten) have particularly cut back on what was already a limited downfield passing attack. Illinois averaged just 51. Yards a completion in last Saturday's 52-22 loss at Ohio State. It was the Illini's sixth-straight defeat.

Scheelhaase says he thinks he's healthy enough to run whatever plays the offense needs him to run. And he hopes to rev up the downfield attack Saturday against Minnesota (5-4, 1-4).

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Illinois Cities Begin Buying Road Salt

With the weather changing across Illinois municipalities are starting to think about buying road salt.

State highway experts are expecting municipalities to buy less salt this year after last season's mild winter. Champaign County Highway Department Superintendent Tracy Wingler says "there's an abundance of salt."

Champaign County used about 1,100 tons of salt last year. But the year before, which was a heavier winter, the county used about 4,800 tons of salt. The county bought about one-third the amount of salt it usually purchases.

Champaign County and the cities of Champaign and Urbana buy the salt through a state program that allows them flexibility in purchasing.

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Illinois Families Reminded To Change Smoke Alarm Batteries

Illinois state fire officials remind residents to change their smoke alarm batteries this weekend.

The Office of the Illinois State Fire Marshal says residents should change smoke alarm batteries at the same time as they set their clocks back to standard time. That's this Sunday. Fire experts say it's crucial that residents do this twice a year to make sure smoke alarms are working properly.

Illinois fire officials say families should have smoke alarms on every floor of their home. They also suggest changing batteries in flashlights, radios and carbon monoxide detectors.

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Illinois Shows Strong Effort To Get Voters To Polls

From door-knocking to arranging Election Day transportation, Illinois is showing intense efforts to get voters to the polls.

Tuesday's election in President Barack Obama's home state features at least six U.S. House races that are expected to be close, a matchup that will determine if an indicted former state lawmaker can go back to Springfield and a proposed amendment to the Illinois Constitution.

National Republicans have sent two busloads of workers from Washington to help with voter efforts and the party is relying on technology to help watch polls on Tuesday. Democrats in Illinois are focused on congressional races and sending Illinoisans to nearby battleground states to help in the presidential contest.

Advocacy groups are making scores of calls. That includes the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights.

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Baby Hospitalized After Being Shaken Dies

A Peoria Heights infant who was rushed to the hospital after he was allegedly shaken by his father has died.

Six-week-old Asa Knowles was pronounced dead late Saturday night at Children's Hospital of Illinois. An autopsy has been scheduled for Monday.

The boy was taken to an area hospital Tuesday. His father, Zachary Knowles told authorities the infant became unresponsive after he was bouncing him to calm him down.

The father was charged with aggravated battery to a child and other charges. On Sunday morning, police said the charges had not been upgraded and that the father remained in custody.

In 2008, Zachary Knowles was arrested for fracturing the skull of the 18-month-old son of his girlfriend and later convicted of domestic battery.

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Dozens Fall Ill After Eating At Peoria Banquet

Dozens of people have gotten sick after eating at a banquet this week at a Peoria steakhouse.

A Peoria City/County Health Department investigation found a norovirus sickened almost 40 people who attended the event at Alexander's Steakhouse. Health administrator Greg Chance says those who were ill had vomiting, diarrhea and abdominal pain. Chance says they attended an end-of-season event for a high school soccer team.

Chance says the restaurant has been "very cooperative." He says an inspection of the restaurant's food service "revealed no significant findings." Chance calls it an "isolated incident." He says only a few of the ill individuals sought medical attention and all are recovering.

Samples from the restaurants were sent to a Springfield for testing.

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Millions Awarded For University of Illinois Research Center

A research center that will be based at the University of Illinois has been awarded $30 million over the next five years.

It's called the SONIC center and will focus on building complicated systems out of next-generation circuit technology.

The multidisciplinary center will involve researchers from seven other universities. They are Stanford, Michigan, Princeton, Carnegie-Mellon and the University of California campuses at Berkeley, San Diego and Santa Barbara.

The SONIC center in Illinois is 1 of 6 new centers that will be part of the Semiconductor Research Corp.'s Focus Center Research Program, which gets under way Jan. 1.

About $12.5 million of the award money will go to the Illinois campus.

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Former Congresswoman: More Women Should Get Into Politics

Former Illinois Congresswoman Debbie Halvorson says more women should be in politics. Her new book out this week is called "Playing Ball with the Big Boys and Why the Big Girls Better Get in the Game."

[audio:rddHalvorson1.mp3] [/audio]

Halvorson says more women should be in politics. In her new she talks about why women should speak up.

[audio:rddHalvorson2.mp3] [/audio]

Democrat Halvorson also talks about losing a primary to Congressman Jesse Jackson, Jr. earlier this year. She wishes him well as he comes to grips with his bipolar disorder diagnosis, but she says that's not an excuse for how he runs his office. Halvorson's new book can be purchased online at PlayingBallWithTheBigBoys.com.

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Medicare Part D Open Enrollment Going On Now

Medicare Part D open enrollment is going on now.

Seniors have a little over a month to enroll or change their plan through Medicare Part D. Jack Meyers with Social Security explains this is the chance seniors have to enroll into Medicare Part D, or to change their plan. Meyers notes, anyone on Medicare can join Medicare Part D, which is the prescription drug coverage of Medicare.

[audio:11512openenroll1.mp3] [/audio]

Meyers has a recommendation to those who may be new to Medicare, and may soon be faced with this decision. He recommends enrolling right away, because if you wait to enroll, there is a chance you have to pay penalty costs because of other drug coverages.

[audio:11512openenroll2.mp3] [/audio]

For seniors already enrolled into Medicare Part D, it is also recommended you take a look at your plan and compare with other plans to see if they could better meet your needs. Meyers explains this would be a good idea for seniors who have had their prescriptions changed, or seniors who may not be happy with their current plan.

[audio:11512openenroll3.mp3] [/audio]

Enrollment is open until December 7. There are several ways seniors can receive information and help in determining what their futures with Medicare Part D should be. The first is to contact the Senior Health Insurance Program, or SHIP, by calling at 1-800-548-9034. SHIP can give you unbiased information about all the options you have. Other information can be gathered by calling Medicare directly at 1-800-633-4227. You can also stop in or call your local senior center and receive guidance as well.

Social Security also has a few programs that can help seniors financially in covering some of their Medicare Part D costs. Tune into Regional Radio News tomorrow for information on those programs.

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Lincoln Looking Into Bike Trails For Future

The early stages of a plan to incorporate a bike path in Logan County is underway.

Lincoln and Logan County are a part of the Regional Planning Commission. Mayor of the City of Lincoln, Keith Snyder explains the Commission recently was awarded a grant through the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) to begin planning for a future bike path. Mayor Snyder says Lincoln has looked into bike trails in the past, but never taken an extensive look at having a bike trail.

[audio:11512biketrail1.mp3] [/audio]

The city has several unmarked bike trails currently, but there are no marked trails. The Mayor notes that Route 66, which runs North to South through Logan County, has a bike trail that stretches from Chicago to St. Louis, but Logan County is a hole in that trail. He feels this would be a great opportunity to fix that, and establish other trails through the city as well.

[audio:11512biketrail2.mp3] [/audio]

Establishing a bike trail that could ultimately run all through Logan County and connect with other bike trails of surrounding counties could take anywhere from ten to twenty years to become a reality. Mayor Snyder hopes to have some short term goals in their plans that they could easily accomplish.

[audio:11512biketrail3.mp3] [/audio]

While a cost for all this is not really able to be established yet, the Mayor notes they will seek out grants that could make the cost more manageable, and at the same time, allow the city and county to begin these trails. Mayor Snyder adds, other avenues they could explore, would be implementing bike lanes on streets that are being redone and things like that.

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Local Artist Hoping To Stir Up Enthusiasm For Local Art Work

One local artist has her eye on sprucing up the community through art work.

Local artist Sharon Snyder recently completed a sculpture of a bird, which she calls 'Archie', which is now display at the Clinton City Hall. Having been rejuvenated by that effort, she is hoping to drum up some support from local art enthusiasts to continue in that effort.

[audio:11512localart1.mp3] [/audio]

Having taken on the piece of art at Clinton's City Hall, Snyder explains helping out can be a great way to make yourself feel good. She says whatever it is you enjoy doing, it feels good to make a difference and do something positive for your community.

[audio:11512localart2.mp3] [/audio]

Snyder says she is looking for ideas from community members as much as she has ideas on her own. She hopes to make herself approachable to talk to and bounce ideas off.

If you are interested in talking with her about any ideas or ways to get involved, you can contact Sharon Snyder at sharondipity77@gmail.com.

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Johnson Captures Win At Texas, Increases Points Lead

Jimmie Johnson took advantage of a late caution and passed Brad Keselowski with less than two laps to go to win Sunday's race at Texas Motor Speedway.  It was the second straight win for Johnson and helped him increase his lead over Keselowski in the Chase for the Sprint Cup to seven points.  The Chase heads to Phoenix next week before wrapping up at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 18th.

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Alabama Stays Atop BCS Rankings

The Alabama Crimson Tide are once again the number-one team in the BCS Standings.  The Kansas State Wildcats also stayed put in the standings at number-two.  The Oregon Ducks jumped the Notre Dame Fighting Irish for third.  The Georgia Bulldogs round out the top-five.  It's the first time in 40 consecutive weeks that Boise State is not in the top-25 of the BCS Standings.  UCLA shot up to number-18, while Rutgers, Northwestern and Toledo also moved into the top-25.  The top two teams in the final standings will meet on January 7th, 2013 in the BCS National Championship Game.

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McGwire To Take Over As Dodgers Hitting Coach

Mark McGwire is going to become the next hitting coach for the Los Angeles Dodgers.  The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports McGwire has declined the Cardinals' extension to stay in St. Louis.  The 49-year-old has been the hitting coach for St. Louis the past three seasons.

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Hornets Top Bulls

Greivis Vasquez scored 18 points and the New Orleans Hornets beat the Chicago Bulls 89-82 on Saturday night even though they were missing Anthony Davis.

Robin Lopez and Jason Smith scored 16 apiece. Ryan Anderson added 12 points and 13 rebounds, and the Hornets hit 20 of 23 free throws to get the win even though Davis was nursing a mild concussion.

Luol Deng had 19 points and eight rebounds for Chicago. Nate Robinson scored 15, and Marco Belinelli added 13 against his former team, but the Bulls shot 33% in this one after hitting just under 64% of their shots the previous night in an easy win over Cleveland.

The Hornets trailed by seven in the second quarter and led by 10 in the third but had to hang on down the stretch, with Robinson making it as tough as he could on them.

NBA SUNDAY SCORES
------
New York Knicks 100, Philadelphia 76ers 84
Toronto Raptors 105, Minnesota Timberwolves 86
Orlando Magic 115, Phoenix Suns 94
Atlanta Hawks 104, Oklahoma City Thunder 95
Los Angeles Lakers 108, Detroit Pistons 79

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Illini Cruise In Exhibition

Tracy Abrams scored 17 points and Nnanna Egwu had 10 rebounds to lead Illinois past West Chester 75-66 in the Illini's final exhibition game.

Trailing 11-12 seven minutes into the first half Sunday, Illinois made five straight free throws that led a 14-0 run. Illinois kept the lead from there and closed out the first half 44-20.

Graduate student-transfer Sam McLaurin had 11 points and nine rebounds while guards Abrams, D.J. Richardson and Brandon Paul had two assists each.

Illinois contained the lead throughout the second half, although West Chester posted 46 points and closed it to a 10-point gap with one minute remaining.

The Illini committed 21 turnovers.

Jon Breeden led West Chester with 12 points.

The Illini open their season Friday against Colgate.

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Bears Blast Titans; Colts, Packers Win

>>Bears Blast Titans

(Nashville, TN) -- Jay Cutler threw for 229 yards and three touchdowns to Brandon Marshall as the Bears blasted the Titans 51-20. Marshall ended with nine catches for 122 yards, while Matt Forte had 12 carries for 103 yards and a score for the Bears, who have won six in-a-row to improve to 7-and-1 on the season. Charles Tillman racked up nine tackles and four forced fumbles in the victory. Matt Hasselbeck finished 20-of-35 for 194 yards with a TD and an interception for the Titans, who fell to 3-and-6 with their second straight loss. Chris Johnson rushed for 141 yards and a score but lost two fumbles in the setback.

>>Colts Clip Dolphins

(Indianapolis, IN) -- Andrew Luck threw for a NFL rookie-record 433 yards to go with two touchdowns as the Colts defeated the Dolphins, 23-20. T.Y. Hilton made six catches for 102 yards and a touchdown, while Reggie Wayne made seven catches for 78 yards and a TD. Indianapolis is 5-and-3 and 4-and-1 at home. Fellow rookie Ryan Tannehill threw for 290 yards and a score for Miami, which dipped to 4-and-4. Reggie Bush rushed for 41 yards and a touchdown in defeat. Brian Hartline made eight grabs for 107 yards.

>>Packers Hand Cards Fifth Straight Loss

(Green Bay, WI) -- Aaron Rodgers threw for 218 yards and four touchdowns as the Packers beat the Cardinals 31-17 at Lambeau Field. Randall Cobb had a pair of TD catches, while Tom Crabtree added a 72-yard touchdown grab for the Packers, who have won four in-a-row to improve to 6-and-3 on the season. James Jones also found the end zone in the victory. The Pack have their bye this week.

>>SUNDAY'S SCOREBOARD

NFL
------
Baltimore Ravens 25, Cleveland Browns 15
Denver Broncos 31, Cincinnati Bengals 23
Carolina Panthers 21, Washington Redskins 13
Detroit Lions 31, Jacksonville Jaguars 14
Houston Texans 21, Buffalo Bills 9
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 42, Oakland Raiders 32
Seattle Seahawks 30, Minnesota Vikings 20
Pittsburgh Steelers 24, New York Giants 20
Atlanta Falcons 19, Dallas Cowboys 13

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Northern Iowa Shuts Out Western Illinois

Sawyer Kollmorgen threw three touchdown passes and the Northern Iowa defense held Western Illinois to just 172 total yards for a 40-0 victory on Saturday.

Northern Iowa (3-6, 2-4 Missouri Valley) also rushed for 303 yards. David Johnson picked up 149 with a TD.

Northern Iowa's defense stymied Western Illinois (3-6, 1-5) by coming up with four sacks and picking off two passes, one that was returned by Garrett Scott for a 20-yard TD.

Hayden Northern completed 9 of 18 passes for 97 yards to lead Western Illinois, and Jean-Marc Charles recovered a fumble.

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Illinois State Tops Indiana State

Darrelynn Dunn rushed for 100 yards and a touchdown and Tyrone Walker had seven catches for 120 yards and a score as Illinois State defeated Indiana State 17-10 on Saturday.

The Redbirds (8-2, 5-2 Missouri Valley) won their seventh straight road game.

Shakir Bell rushed for 115 yards on 22 carries, and Mike Perish was 20 of 40 passing for 182 yards and a TD for the Sycamores (7-3, 5-2).

The game was scoreless until Nick Aussieker's 36-yard field goal for Illinois State with 6:52 remaining in the third quarter. Walker had his touchdown catch, a 4-yarder, later in the quarter, and Dunn made it 17-0 on a 3-yard run with 2:52 left in the game.

Indiana State scored all of its points in the final 31 seconds. Perish hit Michael Mardis with a 6-yard TD, and after an onside kick recovery, Tann Fritschle made it a one-score game with a 33-yard field goal with six seconds remaining. The Sycamores recovered another onside kick, but it was negated by an offside penalty.

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No. 6 Ohio State Rolls Illinois

Carlos Hyde rushed for 137 yards and three touchdowns and Braxton Miller passed for two scores and ran for another to lead No. 6 Ohio State past Illinois 52-22 on Saturday.

The Buckeyes (10-0, 6-0 Big Ten) maintained the upper hand in the Leaders Division heading into a bye week. They have games remaining at Wisconsin on Nov. 17 and against rival Michigan at home a week later.

Miller, considered a Heisman Trophy hopeful, had 18 carries for 73 yards, and completed 12 of 20 passes for 226 yards.

It was the sixth consecutive loss for the Illini (2-7, 0-5) and their 11th consecutive Big Ten loss.

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State Amendment Would Require Three-Fifths Majority To Enhance State Employee Benefits

As voters head out to vote this Tuesday, there is a question on the ballot people across Illinois will be voting on.

The referendum question on each ballot this Tuesday deals with an amendment to increase state employee pension benefits. State Representative Chapin Rose says the proposed amendment is very long, and very confusing. He explains the basic premise of the proposal is to require a three-fifths majority to increase state employee pension benefits.

[audio:11612amendment2.mp3] [/audio]

On top of the language being already confusing to the general public, there are becoming two schools of thought on how this would be implemented. Rep. Rose says one retired University of Illinois Law Professor says this could change current retirees benefits, while the state's employees union says this will only effect future retirees. Rep. Rose notes the idea of it is to be prospective.

[audio:11612amendment3.mp3] [/audio]

Rep. Rose feels this whole pension situation has sprouted because of several past problems within the state. He explains it's a very precarious situation because ofthe current state of Illinois' pension system, and now advocates against the amendment don't want it passed because they want their employees to have their benefits increased.

[audio:11612amendment4.mp3] [/audio]

Rep. Rose says the wording on this amendment could have been clearer, but he feels in short, this amendment is a way to handcuff the legislator.

Rep. Rose adds he would like to see an amendment where the state would be required to make all their pension payments, and not skip any. He also feels this amendment could be a good thing for Illinois.

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Weekend Report

November 3, 2012

 

Jail Population: 76

Summons Served: 6

Warrant Arrests: 1

 

November 4, 2012

 

Jail Population: 79

Summons Served: 3

Warrant Arrests: 2

 

November 5, 2012

 

Jail Population: 77

Summons Served: 0

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

Investigation into the scene of an accident which occurred at approximately 12:30 a.m. on Saturday, November 4, revealed that a vehicle driven by Jeffrey Freden, 34, Bellflower, was traveling home when he went off the roadway on State Route 54 eastbound, east of County Highway 3. He struck the ditch and rolled his vehicle that came to a rest tight side up. No injuries were reported and the vehicle was towed from the scene. Freden was issued citations for Driving Under Influence, Improper Lane Usage, Leaving the Scene Of A Property Damage Accident, and Failure To Reduce Speed/Accident. Freden posted the necessary bond and was released.

 

Anthony Buttrum, 38, Decatur, was issued a citation for Driving While License Suspended. Buttrum posted the necessary bond and was released.

 

Eva Thrasher, 42, Urbana, was issued a citation for Operating Uninsured Vehicle. Thrasher posted her IL Driver’s License as bond and was released.

 

Dennis Cordes, 68, Maroa, was issued a citation for Operating Uninsured Vehicle. Cordes posted his IL Driver’s License as bond and was released.

 

 

ALL SUSPECTS ARE PRESUMED INNOCENT UNTIL FOUND GUILTY IN A COURT OF LAW.

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Clinton Police Weekend Report

CITATIONS

11/4/12

BRANDON L. E. BROWN 21, BLOOMINGTON SPEEDING 72 MPH IN A 55 MPH ZONE, OPERATING UNINSURED MOTOR VEHICLE. NOTICE TO APPEAR ISSUED

 

ON 11/3/12 CLINTON POLICE ARRESTED BRITTNAY N. LOCKWOOD 28, CLINTON ON A DEWITT COUNTY WARRANT. LOCKWOOD WAS TRANSPORTED TO THE DEWITT COUNTY JAIL AND RELEASED TO CORRECTIONS.

 

ON 11/4/12 CLINTON POLICE ARRESTED JAMES D. RUPPE 27, SHELBYVILLE ON A SHELBY COUNTY WARRANT. RUPPE WAS TRANSPORTED TO THE DEWITT COUNTY JAIL AND RELEASED TO CORRECTIONS.

 

ON 11/4/12 CLINTON POLICE ARRESTED GARY L. GREGORY 21, BLOOMINGTON ON A MACON COUNTY WARRANT AND A SHELBY COUNTY WARRANT. GREGORY WAS TRANSPORTED TO THE DEWITT COUNTY JAIL AND RELEASED TO CORRECTIONS.

 

ON 11/4/12 CLINTON POLICE ARRESTED JAMES H. ALTSHUE 18, BLOOMINGTON FOR NO VALID DRIVERS LICENSE, POSSESSION OF MARIJUANA AND POSSESSION OF DRUG PARAPHERNALIA AND A 16 YEAR OLD JUVENILE WAS TAKEN INTO CUSTODY FOR POSSESSION OF MARIJUANA AND POSSESSION OF DRUG PARAPHERNALIA. ALTSHUE WAS TRANSPORTED TO THE DEWITT COUNTY JAIL AND RELEASED TO CORRECTIONS AND THE JUVENILE WAS TRANSPORTED TO THE CLINTON POLICE DEPARTMENT AND RELEASED TO THEIR PARENT PENDING FORMAL CHARGES IN COURT.

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Friday's National Scoreboard

NBA
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Orlando Magic 102, Denver Nuggets 89
Charlotte Bobcats 90, Indiana Pacers 89
Chicago Bulls 115, Cleveland Cavaliers 86
Houston Rockets 109, Atlanta Hawks 102
Milwaukee Bucks 99, Boston Celtics 88
Oklahoma City Thunder 106, Portland Trail Blazers 92
Minnesota Timberwolves 92, Sacramento Kings 80
New Orleans Hornets 88, Utah Jazz 86
New York Knicks 104, Miami Heat 84
Phoenix Suns 92, Detroit Pistons 89
Los Angeles Clippers 105, Los Angeles Lakers 95
Memphis Grizzlies 104, Golden State Warriors 94

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MLB, MLBPA Donating $1-Million To Sandy Relief

Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association are donating $1-million to Hurricane Sandy relief efforts.  MLB and MLBPA are supporting Feeding America, the American Red Cross and the Salvation Army.  The announcement comes one day after the Yankees committed half a million dollars to help the Tri-State area recover from the devastating storm.

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Bulls Blast Cavs

Carlos Boozer collected 19 points, seven rebounds and six assists as the Bulls blasted the Cavaliers, 115-86.  Rip Hamilton also netted 19 points to help the Bulls move to 2-and-0.  Nate Robinson finished with 16 points and 12 assists off the bench in the victory.  Kyrie Irving ended with 15 points to pace the Cavaliers.  Alonzo Gee and Anderson Varejao each had 12 points in the loss.

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Central Illinois IHSA Second Round Play-Off Schedule

Second Round
Game 17 — #1 Maple Park (Kaneland) (10-0) at #9 New Lenox (Lincoln-Way West) (7-3) (map), Sat., Nov. 3, 1:00 pm

Game 18 — #13 Tinley Park (H.S.) (6-4) vs. #12 Joliet (Catholic Academy) (6-4) at Joliet (Memorial Stadium) (map), Sat., Nov. 3, 1:00 pm

Game 19 — #7 Woodstock (North) (7-3) at #2 Woodstock (Marian) (10-0) (map), Sat., Nov. 3, 6:00 pm

Game 20 — #6 Sycamore (H.S.) (7-3) at #3 Lombard (Montini) (8-2) (map), Sat., Nov. 3, 1:00 pm

 

Game 21 — Washington 30, Normal (University) 6

Game 22 — #3 Urbana (H.S.) (9-1) at #2 Morris (9-1) (map), Sat., Nov. 3, 4:00 pm

Game 23 — #4 Chatham (Glenwood) (8-2) at #1 Jerseyville (Jersey) (10-0) (map), Sat., Nov. 3, 2:00 pm

Game 24 — #3 Springfield (Sacred Heart-Griffin) (9-1) at #7 Jacksonville (H.S.) (6-4) (map), Sat., Nov. 3, 1:00 pm


  Second Round
Game 17 — #1 Elmwood [E.-Brimfield Coop] (10-0) at #9 Winnebago (8-2) (map), Sat., Nov. 3, 2:00 pm

Game 18 — #4 Aurora (A. Christian) (9-1) at #12 Elmhurst (Immaculate Conception) (7-3) (map), Sat., Nov. 3, 1:00 pm

Game 19 — #7 Monmouth (M.-Roseville) (8-2) at #2 Sterling (Newman Central Catholic) (10-0) (map), Sat., Nov. 3, 2:00 pm

Game 20 — #3 St. Joseph (S.J.-Ogden) (9-1) at #11 Wilmington (8-2) (map), Sat., Nov. 3, 6:00 pm

 

Game 21 — #1 Williamsville (10-0) at #5 Monticello (8-2) (map), Sat., Nov. 3, 1:30 pm

Game 22 — #3 Pleasant Plains (9-1) at #2 Tolono (Unity) (9-1) (map), Sat., Nov. 3, 1:00 pm

Game 23 — #4 Vienna [V.-Goreville Coop] (7-3) at #1 Greenville (9-1) (map), Sat., Nov. 3, 2:00 pm

Game 24 — #2 Benton (9-1) at #6 Carterville (7-3) (map), Sat., Nov. 3, 12:00 noon

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Daylight Savings Time Reminder

Tonight we can make up that hour of sleep we lost last spring! Remember to turn your clocks back an hour tonight!

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SIU School of Medicine Flu Update

Influenza is more than just an inconvenience. Flu can be a significant health threat for individuals of all ages, especially seniors and children who have other medical conditions.
 
Influenza sends more than 200,000 Americans to the hospital each year and it is among the leading causes of death for senior citizens. But getting a flu vaccination can help prevent it. Dr. Janak Koirala, professor of infectious diseases at SIU School of Medicine in Springfield, explains who should be vaccinated.
 
[audio:siuflu1.mp3] [/audio]

Dr. Koirala says if someone gets very ill from influenza, they should go to their primary care physician or the emergency department. Individuals who have the flu should be vigilant about hand washing and stay home from work or school so they do not cause others to get sick. For information about getting a flu vaccination, contact your primary care physician, local public health department or pharmacy.

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Student Demographics Changing in Illinois

STUDENT DEMOGRAPHICS ARE CHANGING IN ILLINOIS.
 
NEW DATA FROM THE STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION SHOWS TOTAL ENROLLMENT IN ILLINOIS SCHOOLS IS AROUND TWO MILLION STUDENTS. BOARD CHAIRMAN GERY (gary) CHICO SAYS THE MAKE-UP OF THE STUDENT BODY REFLECTS A MORE DIVERSE STATE POPULATION.
 
[audio:demo.mp3] [/audio]
 
THE NUMBER OF KIDS WHO SPEAK ENGLISH AS THEIR SECOND LANGUAGE IS ALSO INCREASING…STANDING AT NINE POINT FOUR PERCENT OF STUDENTS THIS YEAR. 49 PERCENT OF STUDENTS IN ILLINOIS COME FROM LOW INCOME FAMILIES.

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The University of Illinois To Build Solar Energy Complex

The University of Illinois plans to build a solar-energy complex that could eventually supply about 2% of the campus' power.

The university says it would have to spend about $15.5 million on the solar-energy farm over its first 10 years but would then be able to use energy that would all but cost-free.

The News-Gazette newspaper in Champaign reports http://bit.ly/VirC2L that university trustees are expected to consider the plan at their meeting Thursday.

If trustees OK the plan the complex would be built and for its first 10 years operated by a California company, Phoenix Solar Inc. The university would buy the energy the first 10 years, but be able to use it without cost after that.

Construction is expected to be completed and the complex operating next fall.

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Quinn Sends Help For Hurricane Relief

GOVERNOR PAT QUINN IS SENDING AN ILLINOIS TEAM TO HELP WITH HURRICANE RESPONSE EFFORTS IN NEW YORK.
 
13 LOCAL EMERGENCY MANAGERS…AND TWO STATE EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT WORKERS ARE HEADED OUT EAST FOR TWO WEEKS. IEMA DIRECTOR JONATHON MONKEN SAYS IT GIVES ILLINOIS RESPONDERS A CHANCE TO HELP OUT.
 
[audio:ny.mp3] [/audio]
 
MONKEN SAYS THE WORKERS WILL BE RELIEVING EXHAUSTED NEW YORK EMERGENCY OPERATIONS CENTER PERSONNEL.

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Weekly Weather Update

The month of October saw below normal temperatures and this weekend will see more highs in 40s and 50s and a slight chance of rain. State Climatologist Jim Angel has more.
 
[audio:wx112.mp3] [/audio]

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The University of Illinois Plans to Build Solar-Energy Complex

The University of Illinois plans to build a solar-energy complex that could eventually supply about 2% of the campus' power.

The university says it would have to spend about $15.5 million on the solar-energy farm over its first 10 years but would then be able to use energy that would all but cost-free.

The News-Gazette newspaper in Champaign reports http://bit.ly/VirC2L that university trustees are expected to consider the plan at their meeting Thursday.

If trustees OK the plan the complex would be built and for its first 10 years operated by a California company, Phoenix Solar Inc. The university would buy the energy the first 10 years, but be able to use it without cost after that.

Construction is expected to be completed and the complex operating next fall.

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Fish Weathered Drought In Central Illinois Lakes

Fish populations in central Illinois lakes appear to be strong despite the drought that lowered water levels and heated lakes and ponds, causing serious fish kills.

That's the preliminary conclusion of fall lake surveys in the central part of the state.

Illinois Department of Natural Resources fisheries biologist Dan Stephenson says all the lakes he surveys have looked excellent, especially for largemouth bass.

Other surveyors have found the same, even in lakes hardest hit by drought and fish kills, likePowerton and Spring Lakes.

The surveys are conducted by biologists using specially equipped boats that generate an electric field to temporarily stun fish for capture. The fish are then weighed and measured to determine the health and age of the population.

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Illinois Bishop Warns Voters Of 'Grave Sin'

An Illinois bishop has ordered priests in his diocese to read a letter from the pulpit this weekend critical of President Barack Obama and Senate Democrats.

Catholic Diocese of Peoria Bishop Daniel Jenky's letter cites the president's unwillingness to consider Catholic objections to a requirement that insurance companies provide birth control to employees of religious organizations.

The letter says voters who enable "the destruction of innocent human life in the womb" are "guilty of grave sin."

Critics say the letter amounts to a violation of IRS guidelines. But diocese chancellor Patricia Gibson says the letter doesn't violate guidelines because it doesn't mention any candidate by name.

Churches are allowed to engage in a wide range of political activities, and the IRS has rarely revoked a church's nonprofit status.

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Sages Season Ends With 14-0 Loss To Williamsville

As heard on 95.9 WEZC Williamsville defeated the Monticello Sages by a score of 14-0. For the Sages, Parker Trice completed five of 16 passes for 60 yards and an interception. He also carried the ball five times for 45 yards. Isaac Bales had three catches for 20 yards. Ryan Donohue carried the ball eight times for 27 yards. The First State Bank of Monticello Player of the Game goes to the Monticello defense.

Williamsville improves to 11-0 on the season and will play Tolono-Unity in 3rd round action of the IHSA State Playoffs.

Monticello season ends with an 8-3 record.

Tune in on November 27th to 95.9 WEZC as the Monticello Sages begin their basketball season against Rantoul at 7:30.

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$42 Million Spent On Six Congressional Races

More than $42 million has been spent on Illinois' top six congressional races in an effort to sway voters.

National political parties and super political action committees have spent almost four times as much compared with two years ago.

Illinois is important in the battle for control of the House, as Republicans try to hold on to seats won in 2010 and Democrats try to pick up 25 seats nationwide to regain control.

Spending was heaviest in the 17th District race between freshman GOP Rep. Bobby Schilling and Democrat Cheri Bustos.

Outside spending reached $8.7 million in the 11th District, $6.6 million in the 12th District, $6.4 million in 10th District $6.3 million in the 13th District and $5.5 million in 8th District.

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Illinois Abortion Foe Makes Quixotic Bid For Congress

Avid abortion foe Angela Michael admits she doesn't have much of a chance of toppling Republican Rep. John Shimkus in an Illinois congressional race. But the activist is using it as a bigger platform for her pet issue.

Michael is a self-described conservative but running for the 15th Congressional District as a Democrat. She's exploiting an opening on the ballot after no Democrat chose to run against Shimkus, a 16-year congressman.

Democratic leaders are ignoring her. Her campaign coffers as of mid-October had less than $500, while Shimkus' war chest was more than $1 million. A Republican has held the seat for all but two years since 1939.

The district encompassing more than 30 counties stretches from Ford County south to Massac County along the Ohio River.

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Illinois Voters Reminded Of Rights

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan is reminding voters of some basic rights ahead of Tuesday's election.

Madigan says voters have the right to vote if they are in line when the polls close at 7 p.m.

If a voter makes a mistake or spoils a paper ballot and the voter hasn't cast the ballot, the voter has the right to a replacement ballot.

Voters have the right to take unpaid time from work to vote - up to two successive hours - as long as they've applied with their employer before Election Day. The employer may choose the time of day.

The attorney general's office has announced they'll have 173 teams of assistant attorneys general and investigators throughout the state on Election Day to monitor the polls.

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Springfield Schools Plan Calls For Job Cuts

The head of Springfield's school system is proposing nearly $8 million in budget cuts, including the elimination of almost 100 teaching jobs.

Springfield School Superintendent Walter Milton released his budget plan Wednesday for the 2013-14 school year, calling for the elimination of a total of 139 positions and the closure of 2 schools. The non-teaching jobs being cut include librarians, administrators and custodians.

School officials say it isn't clear how many of the cuts would be through attrition and how many would involve layoffs.

Milton called the budgeting process "arduous" and says he and his cabinet spent more than 50 hours deliberating over the plan.

The school board still needs to approve the budget plan.

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Peoria Man Convicted For Stealing Christmas Gifts

A Peoria man convicted of stealing Christmas presents from a family with seven children could get up to 30 years in prison.

Jurors deliberated for a few hours before finding 36-year-old Sherman Williams guilty of residential burglary.

Prosecutors say Williams and his three brothers kicked in the back door of a home on Dec. 20 and stole two TVs, two gaming consoles and all of the family's presents. Police recovered the items the next day after officers got a tip and searched the home of 1 of the brothers.

The other three brothers all pleaded guilty and received sentences ranging from 3 1/2 to 7 1/2 years.

Williams faces an extended sentence because of his criminal history, which includes a 2005 drug conviction.

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Sandy Fallout Skips Drought Plagued Midwest

Drought-plagued Midwest farming states got little benefit from the massive storm that pounded the Eastern Seaboard this week, although the nation's worst drought in decades appears to be easing in some areas.

The U.S. Drought Monitor's weekly update posted Thursday shows that 60% of the land in the lower 48 states is experiencing some degree of drought as of Tuesday. That's down nearly 2%age points, taking into account much of Sandy's fallout.

Dry conditions continued easing in Iowa, North Dakota and Illinois, although far too late to help the corn and soybean crops, which are nearly completely harvested.

The federal government says 88% of this year's winter wheat crop had been planted as of Monday. That's 3%age points ahead of the 5-year average.

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Bloomington Zoo Gets Female Snow Leopard

 width=A female snow leopard has taken up residence at Miller Park Zoo in Bloomington.

Thursday the leopard named Hima joins male snow leopard Rilu at the central Illinois zoo. Zoo officials say they hope the pair will breed for the Snow Leopard Species Survival Plan. Hima comes to Bloomington from the Bronx Zoo. She was born at the Granby Zoo in Quebec, Canada.

The endangered species has a captive population of about 150 in North America.

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Bradley To Keep Name 'Braves', May Add Mascot

 width=Bradley University will continue to call its sports teams the Braves and may look to add a mascot to go along with the nickname.

The private university in Peoria surveyed students and alumni and found strong support for the nickname. Most of the 4,100 respondents also favor the addition of an unspecified mascot.

School officials say Bradley stopped using a mascot at some point before 1990 as pressure to drop American Indian mascots increased.

But Bradley, the University of Illinois and 16 other schools were targeted by the NCAA in 2005 over their use of American Indian sports-team names and mascots.

Bradley convinced the NCAA that its use of Braves wasn't hostile toward American Indians, but the school for several years continued to draw scrutiny.

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American Soybean Association Quizzes Presidential Candidates On Agriculture Issues

 width=   width=

Election Day is Tuesday, and one commodity group recently quizzed Presidential candidates Barack Obama and Mitt Romney about several key agricultural issues. Jared White has more...

[audio:103012ASAPresidentialCandidatesWRAP.mp3] [/audio]

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DCRA Play 'Welcome To Big Rock' Opens This Weekend

Tonight begins the the first of a weekend full of performances for a fundraiser for the DeWitt County Restoration Association.

The play "Welcome to Big Rock" is a comedy put together by local play-write Melanie Cheatham. Member of the DCRA, Mark Killough says in the spring, it was decided to do the play for a 4th year. Killough says by mid-summer they had the cast set, and rehearsals began, and this weekend, all their hard work comes to fruition.

[audio:11212dcraplay1.mp3] [/audio]

The play is about a little community who finds out they will be hosting a talent contest to be on TV. Cast member Amy Robinson explains the show highlights the people of the town who think they have talent, but really do not, but there are some diamonds in the rough. She adds last year there was some great talent, and that talent returns once again this year, but notes the male vocals in this years producation are very good.

[audio:11212dcraplay2.mp3] [/audio]

This weekend's show is an effort to help the DCRA in their efforts to restore the Magill Hotel on the downtown Clinton Square. Kilough explains they hope the progress they've made so far in restoring the house will help be the catalyst for other renovations around town. He adds the money from this play will help pay expenses involving the H-VAC system for the retail space.

[audio:11212dcraplay3.mp3] [/audio]

"Welcome To Big Rock" will be performed at the American Legion this weekend. Doors open at 6 tonight and Saturday for cocktail hour, with the play beginning at 7. Doors open at 1 on Sunday and the play begins at 2. Tickets for the dinner theatre for Friday and Saturday cost $40. The 4th will be a dessert-only matinee that costs $25. Tickets can be purchased from all cast members, the Chamber of Commerce or can be ordered online at www.dewittcountyrestoration.org.

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Paker's Jumper Lifts Spurs Past Thunder

Tony Parker hit a jumper as time expired to lift the Spurs past the Thunder, 86-84.  Parker finished with 14 points and 11 assists while Tim Duncan scored 20 points with eight rebounds.  Danny Green added 13 points and five boards for San Antonio, which improved to 2-and-0.  Kevin Durant led the way for the Thunder, who were playing their season opener.  Durant scored 23 points with 14 rebounds and five assists.  Russell Westbrook added 18 points with eight boards and five dimes while Kevin Martin poured in 15 points off the bench.  Oklahoma City shot just under 38-percent from the floor.  It was the Thunder's first game without James Harden, who was traded to the Rockets.

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Baseball Notes

>>Ernie Hays Dies At 77

(Maryland Heights, MO) -- Busch Stadium organist Ernie Hayes died Wednesday at his home in Maryland Heights. Hays had been the organist for St. Louis home games since 1971. The beloved figure at Cardinals games was 77 years old.

>>Wong To Represent Cards In Rising Stars Game

(Scottsdale, AZ) -- Second baseman Kolten Wong will represent the Cardinals in the Arizona Fall League's annual Rising Stars Game. It will take place tomorrow night at Salt River Fields in Scottsdale, Arizona. Wong is hitting .321 with one homer and 10 RBI in the AFL. Sam Freeman was also selected to represent the Cards, but is sidelined with tendinitis in his left biceps.

>>Baseball's UFAs Ready For Business

(Undated) -- Baseball's unrestricted free agents will have the chance to listen to offers come midnight Saturday morning. The exclusive rights for teams to talk to their free agents comes to an end at 11:59 p.m. on Friday. Offers must be made to the team's free agents by 5 p.m. Among those without a contract are Texas slugger Josh Hamilton, Angels pitcher Zack Greinke [[ GRAIN-kee ]] and Atlanta speedster Michael Bourn.

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TNF Recap; Rams Stay Quiet At Deadline

>>Chargers Clobber Chiefs In San Diego

(San Diego, CA) -- San Diego scored twice defensively in a 31-13 rout over the Chiefs. Shaun Phillips recovered a fumble in the end zone and Demorrio Williams returned an interception 59 yards for a touchdown as the Chargers forced Kansas City into four total turnovers. Phillip Rivers threw for 220 yards with two touchdowns and an interception as the Bolts improved to 4-and-4. Ryan Mathews ran for 67 yards on 13 carries while Antonio Gates and Malcom Floyd each hauled in a TD grab. Matt Cassel threw the interception while passing for 181 yards. Jamaal Charles was held to 39 yards on 12 carries but added three catches for 27 yards. Dwayne Bowe caught nine balls for 79 yards as KC dropped to 1-and-7.

 width=>>Rams Finish Practice, Have Four Days Off

(Earth City, MO) -- The Rams practiced yesterday in Earth City and now have four days off. The team will gather next Tuesday and continue to prepare for its next game against the 49ers. St. Louis travels to San Francisco a week from Sunday to face the first-place Niners.

>>No Deals For Rams As Deadline Passes

(Earth City, MO) -- The Rams did not make any trades prior to yesterday's deadline. The team had been rumored to be shopping running back Steven Jackson. The NFL moved the trade deadline from Tuesday to yesterday due to the impact of Hurricane Sandy.

>>NFL, Players' Association Pledge $1M To Hurricane Relief

(New York, NY) -- The NFL and the Players' Association are teaming up to help relief efforts in the storm-ravaged Northeast. The two have jointly pledged one-million-dollars to the American Red Cross to aid in the recovery following Hurricane Sandy. The league and its television partners will also air pre-game and in-game messages to promote public donations during this weekend's games.

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Bears Head To Nashville For Week 9; Pack Hosts Arizona

 width=>>Secon-dary To None: Bears DBs Doing Their Part

The Chicago Bears had some question marks in their secondary when the season started. It turns out they had some answers, too.

With the defensive line applying the pressure up front and the guys in the backfield letting little get past them, the Bears lead the NFC North at 6-1.

They keep coming up with big plays. They keep getting recognized for it, too, with Pro Bowl cornerback Charles Tillman being selected NFC Defensive Player of the Month for October.

All he did was return two interceptions for touchdowns, limit Detroit's Calvin Johnson to just three catches for 34 yards and help hold opposing quarterbacks to a league-low 61.9 passer rating while the Bears went 4-0. A month earlier, Bears cornerback Tim Jennings won the award.

>>Streaking Bears Take On Titans

(Nashville, TN) -- The Chicago Bears are on the road Sunday as they take on the Tennessee Titans at LP Field. The Bears are riding a five-game winning streak following last Sunday's 23-22 comeback win over Carolina. Chicago sits atop the NFC North at 6-and-1. The Bears' only loss came in Week Two at Green Bay. The Titans had their two-game winning streak come to a halt with a 19-14 overtime setback against the Colts in Week Eight. Tennessee blew a 13-6 lead in the fourth quarter and fell to 3-and-5 overall. The Titans are 0-and-2 at home against the Bears since relocating from Houston. Matt Hasselbeck is 2-and-2 since replacing injured quarterback Jake Locker.

 width=>>Reeling Cardinals Clash With Packers In Green Bay

(Green Bay, WI) -- The reeling Arizona Cardinals head to Lambeau Field on Sunday to clash with the Green Bay Packers. The Cards became just the third team in NFL history to lose four straight following a 4-and-0 start. Arizona is coming off a 24-3 drubbing by division-rival San Francisco on "Monday Night Football." Green Bay is on a roll of late, winning three in-a-row to improve to 5-and-3 on the season. The Packers are coming off a 24-15 home win over Jacksonville in Week Eight. The Packers won the last regular season meeting with the Cardinals 33-7 in 2009, but then lost to Arizona 51-45 in overtime in the opening round of the playoffs that year.

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Illinois Hopes To Continue Odd Success At Ohio State

 width=It would surprise many to know that llinois has done very, very well in Ohio Stadium over the last 20-plus years.

Yet Ohio State coach Urban Meyer doesn't believe the Illini have his sixth-ranked and unbeaten Buckeyes' number heading into Saturday's home game against the struggling Illini.

Illinois has won 3 of the last five and 7 of 11 meetings in Columbus dating to 1988, including three games in which the Buckeyes were ranked and the Illini weren't.

Meyer is a pragmatist. If one team beats another, he believes the simplest reason is that it had more talent instead of holding some sort of a magical power.

Still, the Buckeyes say they're taking strides to make sure they do not take Illinois lightly.

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Monticello Hosts Williamsville; IHSA Playoff Week 2 Preview

Round two of the IHSA Football State playoffs get underway tonight and continue tomorrow as several area teams look to continue their march towards Champaign.

 width=>>Monticello Hosts Williamsville

The Monticello Sages will have themselves one of their biggest tests of the season tomorrow as they play host to an undefeated Williamsville team. Williamsville's defense features a frontline ofthree 3-year starters, and a defense that allowed just 14 points the entire regular season. The Sages are coming off a 45-26 win at Nokomis last week. The 19-point final margin was not an indicator of how close this game was. At one point, Monticello held a three TD lead that Nokomis was able to trim to 31-26 with just over 4 minutes left in the game. Two late touchdowns, one off a turnover led the Sages to a late surge to survive and move on to another Saturday afternoon.

The Class 3A game Saturday is at 1:30 pm and you can hear the action live on 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com.

Other area matchups for this weekend:

Class 1A

#1 LeRoy (10-0) vs. #9 Flanagan-Cornell (8-2) Sat., Nov. 3, 2:00 pm
Game 22 — #4 Concord Triopia(9-1) vs. #5 Central A & M (9-1)Sat., Nov. 3, 1:30 pm
Game 23 — #7 Villa Grove (9-1) at #2 Maroa-Forsyth (9-1) Sat., Nov. 3, 1:00 pm

Class 2A
#3 Kewanee Wethersfield (9-1) at #2 Tri-Valley (9-1) Sat., Nov. 3, 1:00 pm
#4 Camp Point Central (10-0) vs. #5 Cerro Gordo (10-0) Sat., Nov. 3, 2:00 pm

Class 3A
#3 St. Joseph-Ogden (9-1) at #11 Wilmington (8-2) Sat., Nov. 3, 6:00 pm
#3 Pleasant Plains (9-1) at #2 Tolono Unity (9-1) Sat., Nov. 3, 1:00 pm

Class 4A
#1 Macomb (9-1) vs. #5 Peoria Notre Dame (7-3) at Peoria Stadium Sat., Nov. 3, 7:00 pm
#3 Charleston (9-1) at #2 Rochester (9-1) Sat., Nov. 3, 6:00 pm

Class 5A
#1 Normal U-High (10-0) at #5 Washington (8-2) Fri., Nov. 2, 7:00 pm
#3 Urbana (H.S.) (9-1) at #2 Morris (9-1) Sat., Nov. 3, 4:00 pm
#4 Chatham (Glenwood) (8-2) at #1 Jerseyville (10-0) Sat., Nov. 3, 2:00 pm
#3 Springfield Sacred Heart-Griffin (9-1) at #7 Jacksonville (6-4) Sat., Nov. 3, 1:00 pm

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DeWitt County Sheriff's Report for 11-2

November 2, 2012

 

Jail Population: 74

Summons Served: 2

Warrant Arrests: 0

 

Michelle Edwards, 42, Blue Mound, was issued a citation for Operating Uninsured Vehicle. Edwards posted her IL Driver’s License as bond and was released.

 

 

ALL SUSPECTS ARE PRESUMED INNOCENT UNTIL FOUND GUILTY IN A COURT OF LAW.

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Clinton Police Report for 11-2

ON 10/31/12 CLINTON POLICE INVESTIGATED A PROPERTY DAMAGE ACCIDENT AT GRANT & VAN BUREN. A VEHICLE DRIVEN BY CHRISTINE L. DAVIS 49, URBANA WAS SOUTHBOUND ON GRANT ST AND WAS STOPPED AT THE STOP LIGHT WAITING TO TURN RIGHT ONTO VAN BUREN. A VEHICLE DRIVEN BY MICHAEL A. HERALD 21, CLINTON WAS STOPPED BEHIND DAVIS AND THOUGHT THAT DAVIS PROCEEDED TO TURN SO HE PROCEEDED AND COLLIDED WITH DAVIS. HERALD WAS ISSUED CITATIONS FOR FAILURE TO REDUCE SPEED TO AVOID AN ACCIDENT AND NO VALID DRIVERS LICENSE. HERALD WAS RELEASED ON A NOTICE TO APPEAR IN COURT.

 

ON 10/31/12 CLINTON POLICE INVESTIGATED A PERSONAL INJURY ACCIDENT AT GRANT & VAN BUREN. A VEHICLE DRIVEN BY JEFFREY L. HOKE 42, CLINTON WAS NORTHBOUND ON GRANT ST. A VEHICLE DRIVEN BY MICHAEL R. GLIDDEN 54, CLINTON WAS SOUTHBOUND ON GRANT STREET AND TURNED LEFT ONTO VAN BUREN IN FRONT OF HOKE. GLIDDEN WAS TRANSPORTED BY CLINTON AMBULANCE SERVICE FOR TREATMENT. GLIDDEN WAS ISSUED A CITATION FOR FAILURE TO YIELD TURNING LEFT. GLIDDEN WAS ISSUED A NOTICE TO APPEAR IN COURT.

 

ON 11/1/12 CLINTON POLICE ARRESTED JOSHUA D. STRAIT 30, CLINTON FOR AGGRAVATED BATTERY AND A 17 YEAR OLD JUVENILE FOR BATTERY. STRAIT WAS TRANSPORTED TO THE DEWITT COUNTY JAIL AND RELEASED TO CORRECTIONS AND THE 17 YEAR OLD WAS RELEASED TO THEIR PARENT PENDING FORMAL CHARGES IN COURT. 

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Gardening Season Coming To Close

 width=The winter months are quickly approaching Central Illinois and that means the leanest months of the year for gardening.
 
Elizabeth Burns, with the Clinton Area Farmers and Artisans' Market, says using some leftover or recycled crops can help to nourish plants for the upcoming spring months. She notes one of the crops that did well, despite the summer's drought were tomatoes.
 
[audio:11212rebuild1.mp3] [/audio]
 
Burns says that people should start planning their gardens for next year. She says that raking leaves into a pile and allowing them to compost makes great fertilizer for a future garden. With Halloween now over, it might also be a good idea to find useful way to utilize those leftover pumpkins and jack-o-lanterns.
 
[audio:11212rebuild2.mp3] [/audio]
 
Burns says that there are some precautions to take when leaving plants out during the cold, winter evenings when the ground freezes.
 
[audio:11212rebuild3.mp3] [/audio]
 
If you want further information about gardening in the winter, you can contact Elizabeth Burns at 217-722-2496.

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Lincoln Heritage Committee of DeWitt County Hosting Special Event Next Week

On Wednesday, November 7th, 7pm, at the Warner Public Library, the Lincoln Heritage Committee of DeWitt County will be hosting a special presentation, Lincoln in DeWitt County, by Bloomington attorney, Guy Fraker. Fraker’s acclaimed newspaper series, Our Link to Lincoln, was printed annually from 2003 to 2006, which followed Lincoln’s circuit-riding days throughout Central Illinois, including DeWitt County.

Based on information uncovered during research for the Our Link to Lincoln series and much more additional research, Fraker has published a 352-page book, Lincoln’s Ladder to the Presidency: the Eighth Judicial Circuit, which is due to be released this month. Fraker’s book emphasizes Lincoln’s days as a circuit-riding lawyer and his crucial ties to Central Illinois. According to Fraker, “All pre-presidential biographies of Lincoln allude to this Circuit experience, but none focuses on the Circuit. The book examines Lincoln and his ever-expanding circle of influence in this significant area of Illinois.” Copies of Lincoln’s Ladder to the Presidency will be available for purchase and signing at the Lincoln in DeWitt County event.

The Lincoln Heritage Committee of DeWitt County invites the public to attend this free event. For more information, contact the Lincoln Heritage Committee of DeWitt County at 217-935-3364 or visit www.lincolnsladder.com.

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University of Illinois Treats Wounded Golden Eagle

 width=Experts at the University of Illinois Wildlife Medical Clinic are treating an injured golden eagle that appears to have lost its way.

The bird was rescued last week near Sadorus, about 10 miles south of Champaign. The eagle has a broken bone in its left wing.

Dr. Julia Whittington says it's rare for the clinic to treat a golden eagle. They're usually found in the western U.S. and typically migrate to Mexico. Whittington says this bird may have gotten lost and been blown off course to Illinois.

She says golden eagles have a brown head with a golden sheen and are larger than the bald eagles typically found in Illinois.

Whittington says it will take four to six weeks for the bird to heal.

(Image Courtesy of Champaign News Gazette)

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LIHEAP Open Enrollment Begins Today

OPEN ENROLLMENT BEGINS TODAY FOR THE STATE’S WINTER HEATING PROGRAM.

ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE AND ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITY SPOKESPERSON MARCELYN LOVE SAYS THE LOW INCOME HOME ENERGY ASSISTANCE PROGRAM, OR LIHEAP, CAN BE A LIFE SAVER WHEN THE TEMPERATURE DROPS…PROVIDING PAYMENTS TO UTILITY COMPANIES TO KEEP THE HEAT ON.

[audio:liheap1.mp3] [/audio]

THE LOW INCOME HOME ENERGY ASSISTANCE PROGRAM PROVIDES DIRECT PAYMENTS TO UTILITIES TO HELP STRUGGLING FAMILIES KEEP THE HEAT ON THIS WINTER. STATE DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE AND ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITY SPOKESPERSON MARCELYN LOVE SAYS IF YOU THINK YOU MIGHT QUALIFY…YOU SHOULD GO AHEAD AND APPLY.

[audio:liheap2.mp3] [/audio]

YOU CAN APPLY FOR A GRANT AT ONE OF SEVERAL LOCAL AGENCIES. VISIT THE WEBSITE: LIHEAP ILLINOIS DOT COM FOR A LIST OF LOCATIONS…OR CALL: 1-877-411-WARM.

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illinoisfarmradio.com Luances New Website

The Miller Media Group, which owns and operates the farm web portal illinoisfarmradio.com, today unveiled its new, improved web site.

The new site is easier to read, and has menu tabs that are easier to access.

The new site also includes a new streaming provider for listening to the morning and noon farm shows, and the over 6 hours a day of agriculture programming.

Desktop computer users can simply click on the "listen live" icon on the right side of the page, to hear live streamed agriculture programming. If you've bookmarked either the web site or the streaming site in the past, please update your bookmarks to the revised web URL and stream address.

Users of iphones and smartphones can also hear illinoisfarmradio.com's live ag programming, simply by downloading the free tunein.com app at their app store, then searching for WHOW.

The updated web site and new streaming platforms are a continuing effort to make current agriculture programming as easy to access as possible, according to Miller Media Group president Randal J. Miller.

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Scovill Zoo To Undergo Winter Changes

 width=The Scovill Zoo in Decatur has closed down for the year, but the staff at the zoo remains busy all through the winter months.

Today the zoo begins demolition of old exhibits to begin a new exhibit they hope to have ready at some point next year. The zoo has been working and planning for a new penguin exhibit at the zoo for the past several years. Assistant Director at the Scovill Zoo, Ken Frye explains they will receive funding help from the Decatur Park District and they've also applied for some grants.

[audio:11112scovillzoo1.mp3] [/audio]

Last winter the zoo upgraded their concession stand, and this year it is the new penguin exhibit they'll work on through the winter. Frye says he has been surprised by the cost of these projects. He notes though they've gotten great support through their gala events and donations from other places.

[audio:11112scovillzoo2.mp3] [/audio]

Despite a tight budget for this year, the zoo will have to hire a new zoo keeper. Frye says their primary job will be to take care of the penguins with some other responsibilities sprinkled in as well. He notes the budget for this new hire was anticipated many years ago.

[audio:11112scovillzoo3.mp3] [/audio]

Frye hopes the new penguin exhibit will be up and going by mid-spring. The type of penguins the zoo will be bringing in are not the traditional cold weather penguins, so they will be able to withstand an Illinois summer.

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Heyworth Schools Embracing Technology Changes In Education

 width=Technology continues to change the way students in the world today learn, both in school and away from school, and one local school district is embracing that change.

Heyworth schools for a few years now have begun to incorporate technology into their classrooms to allow their students the opportunities to learn through technology. Superintendent of Heyworth Schools, Dr. Ty Wolf explains the teachers have been working to incorporate personal electronic devices into their lesson plans.

[audio:11112heyworthtechnology1.mp3] [/audio]

To make learning through technology better, the Heyworth district will be upgrading their bandwidth capabilities. Dr. Wolf says with these upgrades, it will allow for smoother access to online resources.

[audio:11112heyworthtechnology2.mp3] [/audio]

Currently in Heyworth's grade school, they have incorporated the Smart Boards for the younger kids to utilize. Dr. Wolf explains at the high school they have two mobile labs which is used quite extensively.

[audio:11112heyworthtechnology3.mp3] [/audio]

Perhaps the next step in using technology as a learning tool for Heyworth students will be to get a tablet in each student's hands. Dr. Wolf explains right now that is what he and his administrators are looking into. With a new set of standards coming in a few short years, he says that will be something they will seriously consider.

[audio:11112heyworthtechnology4.mp3] [/audio]

Dr. Wolf says this incorporation of technology is not only going to help students in their learning experience, but it will help them in their learning of the technology for every day life.

Dr. Wolf explains each year they dedicate a certain amount of their budget to purchase some of their upgrades. He also notes their educational foundation has provided some support for some of their goals.

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Chiefs, Chargers Take Thursday Night Spotlight

AFC West rivals meet up in this week's Thursday night game as the Kansas City Chiefs take on the San Diego Chargers at Qualcomm Stadium.  Matt Cassel will start at quarterback for the Chiefs with Brady Quinn out with a concussion.  Cassel returns under center after a concussion of his own in Week Five against Baltimore.  Kansas City has lost four straight to fall to 1-and-6.  The Chargers are looking to snap a three-game skid following Sunday's 7-6 setback at Cleveland.  The Bolts have lost four of their last five games overall to slip to 3-and-4, one game behind first-place Denver in the division.  San Diego beat Kansas City 37-20 at Arrowhead Stadium in Week Four.

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NFL Trade Deadline Full of Rumors

The NFL trade window comes to a close this afternoon at 4 p.m. Eastern.  The trade deadline was pushed back from Tuesday to today due to Hurricane Sandy.  Among those rumored to be on the move are longtime Rams running back Steven Jackson.  St. Louis head coach has turned down any rumors of Jackson's potential departure.  Also rumored for a change of scenery is Carolina running back DeAngelo Williams, who is still under a four-year, $43-million deal.  Fellow Panther, wideout Steve Smith may also pack his bags.  The "Star-Ledger" reports Jets quarterback Tim Tebow will likely stay put in New York despite rumors of a trade to Jacksonville.

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Packers Notes

 width=>>Nelson Misses Practice

(Green Bay, WI) -- Packers wide receiver Jordy Nelson missed practice yesterday due to a hamstring injury. The ailment kept Nelson out of last week's win over the Jaguars. Nelson isn't expected to work out until tomorrow and it's unclear if he will play in Sunday's game against the Cardinals.

>>Jennings To Have Surgery This Week

(Green Bay, WI) -- The Packers announced yesterday that wide receiver Greg Jennings will have surgery on his torn abdominal muscle in Philadelphia later this week. Jennings' originally-scheduled date was postponed due to superstorm Sandy. Jennings has appeared in only three games.

>>Packers' House Wins Weekly Honor

(New York, NY) -- Packers cornerback Davon House was named NFC Special Teams Player of the Week yesterday. House blocked a punt that resulted in a touchdown in last week's win over the Jaguars. He became the first Packer to block a punt since September 2003.

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Bears Offense Predictable Focusing On Marshall

 width=The Chicago Bears' offense has been anything but a balancing act.

The Bears know they'll have to do more than have quarterback Jay Cutler throw to wide receiver Brandon Marshall repeatedly if they're going to handle a handful of strong defenses in the second half of the season, starting with Tennessee on Sunday.

Still, they're not necessarily willing to abandon their offensive star.

When the Bears acquired Marshall in the offseason, the plan wasn't to use him as a decoy. They've followed through on that as the only game in which Marshall caught fewer than five passes was in a loss to Green Bay when he had two receptions for 24 yards.

However, it hasn't exactly been a rush to the end zone even if Marshall and Cutler are piling up statistics.

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Bulls Promote Pippen; Sign Gibson To Extension

 width=>>Bulls Name Pippen Senior Advisor

The Chicago Bulls have appointed Hall of Famer Scottie Pippen senior adviser to president and chief operating officer Michael Reinsdorf.

Pippen has been serving as a team ambassador. In a statement issued Wednesday, Reinsdorf says the new title will "better reflect his role with the Bulls." He says Pippen has a "great rapport" with the players and that his "generous personality and sense of humor" allows him to "connect with our partners, fans and front office."

Along with Michael Jordan, Pippen helped lead the Bulls to six NBA championships in the 1990s.

>>Bulls' Gibson Was Not Expecting Extension

Taj Gibson has agreed to a 4-year, $38 million contract extension with the Chicago Bulls, just before the NBA deadline.

Gibson broke the news Wednesday night following a season-opening win over Sacramento, after emerging from a meeting with executive vice president of basketball operations John Paxson and general manager Gar Forman. The new deal kicks in after the season, and it locks in 1 of Chicago's key players for the long term.

It was a stunning turn considering Gibson said before the game that he didn't expect an agreement to be reached and that he was turning down Chicago's offer.

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Bulls Down Kings In Opener

 width=>>Bulls Best Kings

(Chicago, IL) -- Joakim Noah posted 23 points and 10 rebounds to pace the Bulls to a 93-87 season-opening win over the Kings. Richard Hamilton added 19 points while Luol Deng chipped in with 12 rebounds in the win. Carlos Boozer turned in 18 points and eight rebounds for Chicago. Tyreke Evans tallied a team-high 21 points to go with eight boards in defeat. Marcus Thornton scored 15 points off the bench for Sacramento. Rookie Thomas Robinson scored three points and hauled in three rebounds in 22 minutes off the pine for the Kings.

NBA
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Philadelphia 76ers 84, Denver Nuggets 75
Indiana Pacers 90, Toronto Raptors 88
Houston Rockets 105, Detroit Pistons 96
San Antonio Spurs 99, New Orleans Hornets 95
Utah Jazz 113, Dallas Mavericks 94
Golden State Warriors 87, Phoenix Suns 85
Portland Trail Blazers 116, Los Angeles Lakers 106
Los Angeles Clippers 101, Memphis Grizzlies 92

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Monticello Looks To Restore Partially Destroyed Bridge

Image Courtesy of Piatt County Journal Republican

The Monticello community is hoping to rebuild a historic portion of the town that was destroyed earlier this year.

An old railroad right of-way, which became part of a hiking and biking trail west of Monticello was partially destroyed this summer due to a fireworks incident. Mayor of the city of Monticello, Chris Corrie explains that was a well used trail, which was a big loss for the community.

[audio:11212rebuild1.mp3] [/audio]

 width=While some parts of the bridge were destroyed, most of it was preserved. Mayor Corrie explains the cost is estimated at $75-thousand. Monticello is working to get that portion of their trail restored because of the amount of usage it gets.

[audio:11212rebuild2.mp3] [/audio]

Fortunately for residents of Monticello and Piatt County that enjoy utilizing that trail, the Mayor says it is still able to be hiked and biked on. Mayor Corrie explains the city was planning on using the $75-thousand to repave that part of the trail. Now that money is going to reconstruction costs.

[audio:11212rebuild1.mp3] [/audio]

The construction has begun at the site, and according to Mayor Corrie crews hope to have construction done by the middle of this month at the latest. He notes it could be done sooner.


(Top Image Courtesy of Piatt County Journal Republican)

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