GHNS Illinois Budget (6/18/08)

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,

-    Jean Hodges: (630) 348-3350,


Ethics and Law: Conference call set with Boston lawyer. On Tuesday, June 24 at 11 a.m. (Eastern time), we'll hold a 60-minute conference call with Boston attorney Robert A. Bertsche. See more details at

SUDOKU PUZZLES: Sudoku puzzles are now available on the News Service.

Writing coach: Read Casey Laughman’s writing coach blog at This week’s topic: An example of a narrative done right.


The day water turned to gold

GALESBURG – Lauren Romano had just five minutes to get to work late Tuesday afternoon, but she stopped in Econofoods in the vain hope the supermarket had a few bottles of Galesburg’s hottest commodity. Her shoulders slumped when she reached the end of the beverage aisle. The 11 shelves normally set aside for water were all but barren. By Tom Loewy of the Galesburg Register-Mail.


STATE BRIEFS: News from around the state. POSTED.

FLOOD FIGHT: The following stories on Illinois flooding will be available this evening.

MAINBAR: Where levees on the Illinois side of the Mississippi River stand and what the prognoses are. By Bruce Rushton and Amanda Reavy of the State Journal-Register.


SNY UPDATE: The worst spot on the Sny levee is the same spot that broke during massive flooding in 1993. By Chris Young of the State Journal-Register. POSTED.

HOW’S HULL?: The town of Hull was nearly destroyed by the 1993 flooding. How’s it doing today? By Amanda Reavy of the State Journal-Register. Will be posted this evening.

GUARD HELP: A big chunk of the Illinois National Guard is preparing for

deployment to Afghanistan. Has that meant fewer members available to assist with sandbagging? By John Reynolds of the State Journal-Register. Will be posted this evening.

TRUCKING: A look at what bridge closures, etc., are doing to East-West truck traffic through Illinois, Iowa and Missouri. By Chris Dettro of the State Journal-Register. Will be part of SNY UPDATE; separate story will not move.

GAWKERS: A look at how law enforcement is handling people who show up just to have a look. By John Reynolds of the State Journal-Register. Will be part of SNY UPDATE; separate story will not move.

SPELLING CHAMPS: Lt. Gov. Pat Quinn honors about a dozen of Illinois' top spellers, who recently competed in the national spelling bee. Among those expected is Kyle Hou of the Peoria area, who wound up tied for eighth place, and Ashwin Nair of Springfield. Quinn will have his own mini spelling bee with the youngsters. By Adriana Colindres of the State Capitol bureau. Will be posted this evening.

PONTIAC PRISON: A public hearing has been set for Aug. 12 in Pontiac to solicit comments about Gov. Rod Blagojevich's proposed closure of the prison in Pontiac. The hearing is part of a process that must be followed when a state facility closure is being considered. By Adriana Colindres of the State Capitol bureau. HELD.

Former cop convicted on all counts in rape and stalking trial

BLOOMINGTON – A McLean County jury has found a former Bloomington police sergeant guilty on rape and stalking charges. By Matt Buedel of the Peoria Journal Star. Will be updated.

JFK assassination documentary analyzes conspiracy theories

Christopher Andersen remembers devouring the Warren Commission Report on the assassination of President John F. Kennedy as a 9-year-old. By Jessica Young of Suburban Life Publications.

Tornado-chasing meteorology student gets golden opportunity

When everyone else is hunkering down in the basement with bottled water and flashlights, Luke Madaus is the guy driving toward the tornado. By Elizabeth Davies of the Rockford Register Star.


Horse Cents: Show animals cost a pretty penny

SPRINGFIELD – Horse racing is called “the sport of kings” because of the expense associated with it. Owning a show horse, such as those performing at the Midwest Charity Horse Show this week at the Illinois State Fairgrounds, isn’t nearly as costly. But it’s still not a poor man’s game. By Chris Dettro of the State Journal-Register.

As river level rises, so does price of corn

SPRINGFIELD – Corn prices, already above $7 a bushel, are jumping even more as the result of flooding that has indefinitely shut down barge traffic on the upper Mississippi River. By Tim Landis of the State Journal-Register.

Global sales of Belvidere-built Chryslers hit high note

May marked the best month yet for sales of the Dodge Caliber, Jeep Compass and Jeep Patriot, the three fuel-efficient vehicles assembled at Chrysler LLC’s plant in Belvidere.


Habits of a healthy pregnancy

ROCKFORD – The bump at her waist is the only giveaway that Sandi Ware is expecting again for the third time in two and a half years. Otherwise, the 33-year-old occupational-therapist-turned-full-time-mom is in as good or better shape than anyone else pounding the treadmills at 5:30 a.m. at the YMCA of Rockford River Valley. By Mike DeDoncker of the Rockford Register Star.

Dancing with the Phantoms is a full-time job

WINNEBAGO – Freckles dash across Megan McHugh’s nose, evidence of the hours she has spent in the sun just a few weeks into her summer vacation. For 12 hours a day, seven days a week, McHugh has spent the first month of her summer dancing with the Phantom Regiment color guard.


BRITT: Toon on oil drilling. POSTED.

Michelle Teheux: Interest in election extends across the pond

Of course the question of who the next president of the United States will be interests most Americans. But did you realize that folks outside the U.S. are just as interested?

Bill Ford: A hope of higher ground

Macomb Journal staff writer Bill Ford spent the weekend trying to save his grandparents' home from rising floodwaters in Henderson County. A first-person account of the efforts of workers.


MIKE NADEL: CHICAGO - As the Cubs and White Sox get set to resume their always-crazy intracity rivalry, here's hoping the umpires don't blow a home-run call that ruins an otherwise great game. MLB needs to start using instant replay ASAP. POSTED.