Lacking the infrastructure of traditional suppliers, many local farms that want to connect to restaurants, schools and other big buyers are using the Internet to reach customers. Groups of farms are banding together to form regional food hubs, leveraging online ordering, tracking and marketing tools to cut down on costs and to try to keep local food systems viable for growers and affordable for consumers.
A group of lawmakers is challenging the broad powers enjoyed by Illinois' conservation police officers. At issue is whether the officers can operate on private land without a warrant.
Illinois law lets conservation police enter "all lands and waters" to enforce the Wildlife Code. The idea is, even if you have a huge private forest, youâ€™re not allowed to, say, shoot a deer out of season.
State Rep. Dennis Reboletti, a Republican from Elmhurst, says just about every other type of police officer operates under stricter limits.
Southern Illinois University in Carbondale says it has accounted for most of the more than 250 computers that an audit noted were missing last summer. Â
The (Carbondale) Southern Illinoisan (http://bit.ly/1fvZVIg ) reports that the university's assistant provost and chief information officer says an initial search recovered 76 of the 256 computers that had been listed as missing. David Crain says another search turned up 61 more computers. Â
Crain says that most of the remaining computers were found to have been transferred to surplus. Â
From the moment we're born, we're bombarded with an endless array of words. Long, short, pretty, uglyâ€”but all meaningless. Until weâ€™re taught to read and write. But, even before then, we have to learn the alphabet. It's amazing, truly, how many ways those 26 little letters can be manipulated; the seemingly endless combinations that make up the language we know and take for granted. I love words. I love how they can take simple bedding and turn it into softly ruffled sheets, bathed in sleepy whispers and sweet dreams.
Truckers delivering much-needed heating fuel to homes and businesses throughout the Midwest will remain on the road longer now that the federal government has extended regional emergency declarations.Â
Liquid propane was in short supply in dozens of states during the month of January. Â
Before Tuesday's Committee of the Whole meeting, Springfield City Council held a special meeting to release the full audio from a November 5, 2013 executive session discussion about Oak Ridge Cemetery.
Mayor Michael Houston said release of the audio required majority consent of the council.
The vote came after a Sangamon County Judge John Schmidt ruled the discussion a violation of the Illinois Open Meetings Act.Â The topic of the audio is a plan to seek proposals for private management of the city-owned cemetery. Â The plan has since been abandoned.
During my freshman year of high school, my circle of friends was fairly limited. Â I had three friends who I associated with daily, and I was perfectly content with this. Â In place of expanding my social standing and friend group, I spent a good number of my days walking home after school and doing nothing besides laying in my room listening to music. Â This might sound lonely to some, but I was happy doing it, so I felt no need to change. Â Music was and is one of the greatest companions Iâ€™ve had, and one of the best tools I feel people can use to connect with themselves, and even others.
The director of the state's child welfare agency who pleaded guilty to stealing money from clients of a Chicago social-service agency 20 years ago has resigned from his post. Â
Department of Children and Family Services Director Arthur Bishop submitted a letter of resignation to Gov. Pat Quinn's office Wednesday. The letter notes that his background could be a distraction for Quinn in the upcoming election. Â
UPDATE: Â On Tues., March 4, FEMA denied Illinois' appeal for public assistance for nine counties. Â
This week, Gov. Pat Quinn gave a keynote speech at a forum in Washington, D.C. on natural disasters. The governor says Illinois has suffered a record-number of incidents in recent years. And yet the state has come up short when it's sought help from the federal government. That includes a rejection following the outbreak of 25 tornados in Illinois at the end of last year â€” tornadoes from which the towns of Washington, Gifford, and others are still recovering.
SDAT sees the need for more residential space downtown.Â A recent study confirms that view.Â
"We're really talking about millenials, people in their 20's plus or minus.Â And we're talking about the other end of the spectrum, empty nesters," Action Committee Co-chair Chuck Pell said.Â Students from UIS or SIU could also be another group looking for a downtown living experience.Â
Marissa Meli, 28, and Laura Meli, 27, have been in a relationship for more than eight years, and on Wednesday, Feb. 26, 2014 became the first same-sex couple in Champaign County to get a marriage license.
Champaign County Wednesday became the second county in Illinois to begin issuing same-sex marriage licenses before June 1st. Thatâ€™s when a state law says same-sex couples can marry.Â
A federal judge ruled last week that Illinois' same-sex marriage ban isÂ unconstitutional. Urbana residents Marissa and Laura Meli were the first same-sex couple in Champaign County to get a marriage license.
Theyâ€™ve been together for more than eight years, and they tellÂ Sean Powers that theyâ€™ve been waiting for this day for a long time.
Over the next few weeks, you'll be hearing from Congressional candidates running in Illinois' 13th District. There are three Republicans and three Democrats seeking their party's nomination. Â
Attorney Erika Harold (R-Urbana) is making her second run for Congress. Two years ago, she tried to replace former Congressman Tim Johnson on the ballot after Johnson announced plans to retire from politics. But Republican Party chairs instead chose incumbent Rodney Davis.
Harold talks withÂ Sean Powers about her campaign and what she hopes to accomplish.
A southern Illinois lawmaker wants to temporarily cut the tax on propane. Â The Belleville News-Democrat reports the proposal is being introduced by Salem Republican Rep. John Cavaletto.
He wants to lower the tax from 6.25 percent to 1.25 percent. If it's approved, the decrease would take effect June 1 and last through August. Â Â
Cavaletto says the temporary reprieve could mean ``hundreds of dollars in savings for the average homeowner'' if they fill propane tanks before the temperature drops in the fall. Â His says his bill would offer one-time relief. Â
Republican gubernatorial candidate Kirk Dillard got the endorsement of a retired group of teachers Wednesday. But heâ€™s still lagging front-runner Bruce Rauner, who continues to tap his significant personal fortuneÂ for his campaign.
The City of Springfield is putting the final touches on a nearly 600 million-dollar budget.
Aldermen have proposed several changes to the spending plan, which could be adopted tonight at a special council meeting. Â Â Alderman Cory Jobe and others want to move nearly 80-thousand dollars from other areas to pay for a new inspector general position. Â The job would involve investigating possible corruption within city operations.
Mayor Mike Houston says he will work with the position if itâ€™s approved.
War Magic is a local folk band that you probably haven't heart of. The group's been called "dream-folk" and "neo-folk" - and they've only played a handful of shows in town. Alistair Reynolds and Mark Reynolds recently joined us to talk about their project and share some of their unique music:Â
Some of the best Illinois has to offer will be on display this weekend in Springfield.Â It's the annual Illinois Products Expo at the Orr Building on the state fairgrounds.Â More than 70 companies will be represented. Â
Jennifer Tyree,Â Bureau Chief of Marketing and Promotions with the Illinois Department of Agriculture, says it's a variety of offerings.
I used to live right on the busiest street in the world. Maybe, Iâ€™m exaggerating a little bit, but it seemed pretty busy to me. Cars zoomed up and down the street, traveling around the world, and I wasnâ€™t allowed to go past my block on my own, which now seems to be very logical, but at the time it seemed like the most ridiculous rule. On hot summer weeks when I was cooped up to my huge lawn and vast house, my sole escape was Snow Cone Tuesday.
The Illinois House took a key first step in the state budgeting process Tuesday.
It adopted what's called a "revenue estimate" â€” how much money Illinois is expected to be able to spend in the next fiscal year.
The cap, of $34.495 billion, is significant in several ways: It's about a billion less than last year's number, which means lawmakers are going to have extend the tax increase or find other sources of money, or they'll have to make a lot of cuts. On the other hand, it's not as bad as some people had feared.
Most teenagers spend more time on the internet chatting with friends than reading books - let alone poetry. However, the art form has seen a recent resurgence, and in some circles is even considered "hip." In Springfield, 14 area high school students recently competed in the regional version of the Poetry Out Loud contest to recite a wide variety of poems from memory.