Illinois Budget 1.29.09
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.
Casey Laughman: (217) 816-3343, firstname.lastname@example.org
See the GateHouse photos of the week at http://ghnewsroom.com/article/best-gatehouse-photos-week-jan-20-27
IMPEACHMENT TRIAL: The state Senate held closing arguments in the impeachment trial of Gov. Rod Blagojevich. Blagojevich presented his own closing argument. Will be updated throughout the day. With the daily Impeachment Watch box. A separate impeachment budget will be sent out after proceedings conclude.
State Briefs. News from around the state. Will be posted this evening.
IMPEACHMENT: A separate impeachment budget will be sent out after proceedings conclude.
Coffee shop gives shot in the arm to neighborhood
ROCKFORD – The coffee flowed, as did a few tears, as hundreds of people gathered to celebrate the opening of coffee bar Katie’s Cup in the city’s Midtown District Wednesday morning. A new business opening in the faltering economy is reason enough to celebrate. But the Katie’s Cup/Lantow Lofts project also represents the hope of a reinvigorated neighborhood. By Melissa Westphal of the Rockford Register Star.
Springfield to be affected by latest round of Starbucks closings
SPRINGFIELD – Starbucks is about to give local coffee drinkers another jolt. A company statement Wednesday says Springfield will be included in a new round of 300 store closings worldwide, though specific locations would not be released until workers are notified. By Tim Landis of the State Journal-Register.
Students send Valentine’s wishes to injured soldiers
DUNLAP – Hate to give away a punch line, but Kay Michelet, 8, a second-grader at Wilder-Waite Grade School, wrote the following joke in the Valentine's card she penned Wednesday for a wounded soldier or Marine. "Q. What is a dolfins fastest way to get food?" Punch line later. Kay and the rest of the second-graders in Judy McCauley's class all put their creative minds to work Wednesday afternoon with their contribution to a Dunlap School District project to deliver Valentine's cards to wounded servicemen and women recuperating in military hospitals around the world. By Scott Hilyard of the Peoria Journal Star.
Jay Ungar and Molly Mason play the sound of history
SPRINGFIELD – Jay Ungar is perhaps best known for writing a piece of music many people might not realize was composed within the last 30 years. It’s a plaintive fiddle tune immortalized as the main theme music in Ken Burns’ PBS documentary “The Civil War.” Ungar and his wife and performing partner, Molly Mason, will take the Sangamon Auditorium stage on Saturday to celebrate “An Early Birthday Party for A. Lincoln.” By Brian Mackey of the State Journal-Register.
Slipknot enjoys scaring people
PEORIA – They wear menacing masks whenever performing or giving interviews. Their fans are known as "maggots." Their shows have become known as a couple of hours of anarchy, with sweaty mosh pits of thrashing fans, band members stalking the stage with baseball bats - pure metal mayhem. Chris Fehn, one of Slipknot's two percussionists, likes the idea that some people might be a little unsettled by the band's antics. Slipknot performs Monday at the Peoria Civic Center. By Danielle Hatch of the Peoria Journal Star.
Danielle Hatch: No 'Bachelor' for Peoria native
Natalie Getz doesn't regret her time on "The Bachelor," - even her elimination episode, which included a date that started sweet but turned sour, leading to an emotional exit interview in the limo as she was whisked away from the mansion. The 2000 graduate of Morton High School was eliminated in week three of the show’s current season.
BRITT: Toons on the economy and the Blagojevich impeachment. Will be posted this evening.
BRITT VIDEO: Blagojevich vs. Lincoln.
Kevin Haas: Blagojevich talks and talks, says nothing
Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich has been on a media crusade to prove his innocence. He wants to deny criminal complaints that he took bids on Barack Obama’s vacant Senate seat. The media blitz won’t stop Blago from getting impeached, but it should help solicit interest in his future book, “If I Bid It.”
Phil Luciano: Loophole in DUI law is the problem
I have heard great cries of injustice regarding the Pekin cop who got out of a DUI. Certainly, we want no favoritism shown to the men in blue. Yet, if we look closely at the case, maybe we should bemoan not the lack of prosecution but a loophole in DUI laws.
Pam Adams: New commentary amid blackface, old stereotypes
Aunt Jemima. Uncle Mose. Sambo. Pickaninny. Amos 'n Andy. Certain younger generations may not view Andrea Ellen Reed's haunting photographs at the Peoria Art Guild through the lens of other equally haunting times. And so, they may start the journey through Reed's photographic essay in blackface somewhere in the middle or near the end, rather than at the beginning.
Illinois plays at Minnesota. Tipoff 8 p.m. Early story to be sent by 10:30 p.m., story with quotes and report card by 11:15 p.m. By John Supinie.