GHNS Illinois Budget (4/1/08)

Staff Writer
Mount Shasta Herald

Here are the top Illinois stories coming today from GateHouse News Service. Stories are available at Please check 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


-    Casey Laughman: (217) 816-3343,

-    Michael Toeset: (630) 835-8870,


Monday’s front page of the day: The State Journal-Register.

Writing coach: Read Casey Laughman’s writing coach blog at Updated every Monday afternoon.


The daily Illinois budget can be found online at Budget updates will be posted there.


Call the Dream Police: It’s Cheap Trick Day

ROCKFORD – To celebrate the first official Cheap Trick Day in Illinois, members of the band got together Tuesday morning for a breakfast organized by state Sen. Dave Syverson. Will be posted this afternoon. 


STATE BRIEFS: News from around the state. Will be posted this evening.

TREASURER EMBEZZLEMENT: State Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias has scheduled an announcement for 3 p.m. today in Chicago to say that a former treasurer's office employee embezzled $750,000 from the state during the Judy Baar Topinka administration. By Doug Finke of the State Capitol bureau.

LEGISLATURE RETURNS. After a two-week spring break, the Illinois General Assembly comes back to Springfield. Sen. Dale Risinger is predicting another long overtime for the legislative session. By Adriana Colindres of the State Capitol bureau.

MCCARRON SENTENTENCE: Karen McCarron will find out today how long she'll be in prison for killing her autistic daughter in 2006. She faces between 20 and 100 years. By Kevin Sampier of the Peoria Journal Star.

With: An inside look at McCarron's life for the past three months. She spends 23 out of 24 hours a day in a small cell.

WILL IT PLAY IN PEORIA?: The Hallmark Channel is coming to Peoria Wednesday to announce a new cable TV station because of one main reason - the city's "unofficial" slogan, which has been successful lately. CNBC recently taped a segment wrapped around the slogan. The slogan means national attention and could help attract conventions. It also could be part of a regional "brand" promoted by the Heartland Partnership. By John Sharp of the Peoria Journal Star.

With: Henry Schliff, CEO of the Hallmark Channel, talks about why his company chose Peoria over L.A. or New York City for the unveiling of this new network.

Man’s encounter with knife-wielding attacker featured on ‘I Survived’

ROCKFORD – A new national television series featuring harrowing tales of survival will highlight a Rockford man in one of its first episodes next week. Jim Green, a lifelong Rockford area resident, will share his story of how he fought off a knife-wielding attacker, left police a clue to help solve the crime and, on the verge of collapse, drove himself to the hospital on “I Survived.” By Corina Curry of the Rockford Register Star.

Rabbi Pickle spreads kosher message

PEORIA -- Mendy Margolin, who is known as Rabbi Pickle, kept the crowd charmed during an hourlong pickle-making seminar in Peoria, walking them through the recipe, telling jokes and sneaking in lessons about living a kosher lifestyle. By Erinn Deshinsky of the Peoria Journal Star.

Hands-only CPR endorsed by heart association

When John Edie’s attempts to find a pulse confirmed that an elderly woman’s heart had stopped in 2005 at Auburn’s Red Bud Festival, he put her on her back, pushed hard on her chest 10 times and didn’t try mouth-to-mouth breathing. By Dean Olsen of the State Journal-Register.

Souped-up Caliber will be sold outside North America

BELVIDERE -- Chrysler LLC officials announced Tuesday morning that dealers will begin selling the muscled-up Dodge Caliber SRT4, which is built in Belvidere, in markets outside of North America. By Alex Gary of the Rockford Register Star.

Caterpillar to invest $1 billion in emerging markets

PEORIA – In the last few weeks, Caterpillar Inc. Chairman Jim Owens has been talking publicly about the company’s plans to increase investments in emerging markets. On Monday in Beijing, China, he put some numbers to those plans. By Paul Gordon of the Peoria Journal Star.

Tentative response to overhaul of financial regulations

SPRINGFIELD – Reaction to the Bush administration’s proposed overhaul of financial regulations — said to be the most sweeping since 1929 and the Great Depression — ranged Monday from wait-and-see among banking and mortgage groups to too little, too late from a central Illinois group that works with low-income homeowners. By Tim Landis of the State Journal-Register.


BRITT: Toon on the Illinois Teachers Retirement System’s connection to the Rezko trial. Will be posted this evening.

Editorial: Keeping firefighters at base is crucial

The 2005 decision by the Base Realignment and Closure Commission to remove the 183rd Fighter Wing’s F-16 jets and 163 jobs from Springfield still stings. Yet there is one aspect of the impending departure of the 183rd for which the fight is only just starting. Unlike the battle to make BRAC change its mind on the 183rd, which many people knew going in would be next to impossible, many are hopeful that this one will succeed. An editorial from the State Journal-Register.

Editorial: Change in reporting attacks on minors long overdue

Public safety, more often than not, is enhanced when an informed public can take steps to protect itself. Police cannot be everywhere, all the time. An editorial from the Peoria Journal Star.


Kirk Wessler: Baseball not meant for March

For about two hours Monday, opening day went according to script. The Budweiser Clydesdales pranced. St. Louis Cardinals Hall of Famers paraded. Albert Pujols homered. And then the wrath of God was visited upon Busch Stadium.

ILLINI: CHAMPAIGN – Illinois quarterback Juice Williams, a junior this fall, is expected to be more of a leader by his coaches. The Illini also know the passing game needs to take another step forward. By John Supinie. Moving this evening.