Illinois Budget 11.28.08
Here are the top Illinois stories coming today from GateHouse News Service. Stories are available at www.gatehousenewsservice.com. Please check www.gatehousenewsservice.com/regional_news/midwest/illinois/news in the evening for changes to story lineup, including breaking news.
If your paper has a story, digest item, opinion piece or standalone photo to share, please e-mail it to Illinois@gatehousemedia.com.
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Some GateHouse News Service products, including the weekly lifestyle and sports pages, as well as themed and holiday pages, are being redesigned. The redesign will improve the typography and make style sheets associated with GHNS pages more universal. This change also will aid papers that have been redesigned by the News Division.
GateHouse Niche Division publications also will use a new font set, but the design style will remain. These publications include the Family, Bride, Boomers and Healthy Living magazines, as well as other seasonal publications.
The new style and fonts debut with new pages ready for download the week of Dec. 8. A new font set will be available for download with each redesigned page. Earlier pages will retain links to fonts used on those pages.
If you have questions about the fonts, contact Joe Greco, corporate design director, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Joe Greco: Best of GateHouse book slideshow.
BEST OF GATEHOUSE 2008: Submissions are currently being sought for the Best of GateHouse 2008 editorial awards. See more details at:
Woman has 101 Thanksgivings and counting
ROCKFORD – Fay Harper knows a thing or two about cooking a Thanksgiving dinner — she’s been around for more than 100 of them. By Cathy Bayer of the Rockford Register Star.
DUI INTERLOCK: One of the items spared last week when Gov. Rod Blagojevich used his amendatory veto power on a budget-related measure was a program that starts in 2009 and will require all first-time DUI offenders to get "ignition interlock" devices on their vehicles if they want to keep on driving. But the program isn't getting any general revenue funds from the state budget. Rather, secretary of State Jesse White reshuffled some money in his office to provide initial funding and intends for the program eventually to become self-sustaining through fees that the DUI offenders must pay. An ignition interlock requires the driver to blow into a device; if alcohol is detected, the car won't start. By Adriana Colindres of the State Capitol bureau. For use Sunday, Nov. 30.
Statehouse Insider: Doug Finke is off this week. The Statehouse Insider will return next week.
Student thankful for librarian's quick actions
BELVIDERE – A handwritten message from Jesse Montemayor is one thank-you Janice Rush said she’ll keep. The 9-year-old scrawled out a note inside a store-bought card that read: “Thank you for saving me Mrs. Rush. I don’t know what would I be doing now.” About two weeks ago, Rush used the Heimlich maneuver to keep Jesse from choking on an apple. By Kevin Haas of the Rockford Register Star.
With a click, photographer captures top prize
ROCKFORD – Photographer Brian Hampton sat in an off-road vehicle on an African plain on the tail of a pack of big cats. The moment was over in 4 or 5 seconds. Among the photos Hampton clicked off was one that captured one the most prestigious prizes awarded for photography: grand prize in the Windland Smith Rice International Awards 2008, presented by Nature’s Best magazine. By Kartikay Mehrotra of the Rockford Register Star.
Alpaca farming taking off in central Illinois
HILLSBORO – When Juli Shipman looks out the front window of her rural Hillsboro home, she sees a retirement fund and a way to pay for college for her three children. She never envisioned her future would be tied to four-legged animals named Cocopuff and Skippy. Instead of raising cattle or hogs, Juli, a 42-year-old emergency nurse at Hillsboro Hospital, and her husband, Rodney, are among a small but growing number of alpaca farmers in central Illinois. A smaller cousin of the llama, alpacas are known for luxurious coats yielding a sought-after fiber that can be made into sweaters, scarves, hats and socks. By Steven Spearie of the State Journal-Register.
Wired world makes it hard to leave work
SPRINGFIELD – Are you one of those people who can't leave work at the office? The laptop's always on your lap and your thumbs always gliding across the Blackberry so you can deal with your job even when you're supposed to be off-duty? By Andrea Zimmerman of the State Journal-Register.
Gimmickry or pure genius, these invitations are ripe for holiday giving
Have a bread machine or pasta maker stashed away deep inside a hard-to-reach kitchen cabinet? The novelty of these wonder gadgets of the 1990s may have waned. But every year, more gadgets are invented — and many stand the test of time and make great gift ideas. Compiled by the State Journal-Register.
BRITT: Toon on charity sought by banks and the Big Three.
Wood on Words: Turkey ... Chile ... are we Hungary yet?
As if you haven’t had enough leftovers this week, here are a few items I wasn’t able to squeeze into recent columns.
Elizabeth Davies: Sometimes, wishes take a while to come true
Holiday wishes apparently do come true — if you wait long enough. Last year, I wrote a column about my deepest desires for Christmas. It didn’t make the list, but the one thing I wanted most for Christmas last year was a night by myself in a hotel. As a new mother, I spent what little free time I had daydreaming about ordering room service, watching a movie and sleeping until I couldn’t sleep any more. Unfortunately, everyone thought I was joking and instead spent precious holiday dollars on books and clothes.
Brian Mackey: All I want for Christmas is a good book
Dickens’ “Christmas Books” have led my annual best-of-intentions Christmas reading list for nearly a decade now. But at the risk of disappointing high school English teachers, I’m sorry to say I’ve never made it much beyond the first few pages.
Phil Luciano: Holding out for a bailout
Today, I give thanks for the most American gift of all, the bailout. No other country is so generous in rewarding failure. Taxpayers should be grateful to have earned that distinction. But it's time to spread the green beyond corporations. The government should help the little guy. Or even the not-so-little guy - namely, me.
Editorial: George Ryan should finish his sentence
U.S. Sen.. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., told reporters on Tuesday that he was thinking about asking President Bush to commute the sentence of Illinois’ former governor, George Ryan, who is imprisoned after being convicted of corruption charges. We strongly urge the president to turn down any commutation request. An editorial from the State Journal-Register.
Editorial: Springing Ryan from jail would send wrong signals
Sen. Dick Durbin suggested earlier this week that he's thinking about asking a departing President Bush to commute the prison sentence of former Gov. George Ryan. Should that happen, it would send a terrible message to unscrupulous politicians everywhere, but especially in an Illinois that has far too many of them. An editorial from the Peoria Journal Star.
Editorial: An unsafe toy is no gift; take proper precautions
We would love if all of our readers remembered the true meaning of Christmas — not a consumer orgy but a quiet reflection on what is most valuable in our lives. Is there anything more futile on Black Friday than that last statement? This year, in particular, people feel as if it’s their patriotic duty to overspend and make their personal rebuttal to a Scrooge economy. If you must do that, at least do it safely. An editorial from the Rockford Register Star.
MIKE NADEL: Nadel will be writing from Sunday’s Bears-Vikings game. Column to be posted by 10:30 p.m. and updated if necessary.
INSIDE THE LINES: Peoria Journal Star Sports Editor Bill Liesse takes an irreverent look at this weekend’s NFL games.
GAME COVERAGE: Illinois vs. Kent State. Game coverage, report card. Also, short sidebar serving as Illini preview on Texas A&M/Tulsa. With capsule. Tipoff at 5 p.m. Gamer and report card moving by 9:15 p.m. Capsule and sidebar by 10:15 p.m. By John Supinie.
GAME COVERAGE: Illinois vs. Texas A&M/Tulsa. Game coverage, report card. Time TBD. By John Supinie.
Feature on Bears’ recent success in domes:
Bears Quick Shots: