Illinois Budget 3.03.09

Staff Writer
Mount Shasta Herald

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.

Contacts:

Casey Laughman: (217) 816-3343, claughman@gatehousemedia.com

GATEHOUSE NEWSROOM

Tom Sudore: How to use Facebook for your newspaper.

Part I:

http://ghnewsroom.com/article/facebook-your-newsroom-faq-how-tos-and-resources-facebook-pages

Part II:

http://ghnewsroom.com/article/facebook-your-newsroom-setting-page-facebook

Video: Take a tour of the news service’s niche gallery

http://ghnewsroom.com/article/video-take-tour-news-services-niche-gallery

TODAY’S SPOTLIGHT:

Change in DUI law has drivers’ attention

ROCKFORD – It’s still too soon to tell whether the state’s new Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device law will reduce the number of violations for driving under the influence, but it is having a noticeable effect on drivers being ticketed. Winnebago County Sheriff’s Deputy Chief Scott Meyers says first-time offenders, the targets of the law, are markedly more upset these days about getting a DUI. By Corina Curry of the Rockford Register Star.

http://www.gatehousenewsservice.com/regional_news/midwest/illinois/x1959834969

ILLINOIS NEWS

http://www.gatehousenewsservice.com/regional_news/midwest/illinois/news

State Briefs. News from around the state.

http://www.gatehousenewsservice.com/regional_news/midwest/illinois/x1362395218

CASINO DRINKS: Faced with money losses in a tight economy, Illinois riverboat casinos want the lure of free drinks to keep the turnstiles ticking. But first, they need the help of state lawmakers. Senate Bill 2164 would allow casinos to give away free drinks, and a group of anti-gambling and anti-alcohol activists says that would be a dangerous combination. By Andrew Thomason of the State Capitol bureau. Will be posted this evening.

STATE CAPITOL Q&A: A closer look at the thousands of bills state lawmakers have filed this spring for consideration, including the many "shell bills" whose destiny will be determined later. By Ryan Keith of the State Capitol bureau.

http://www.gatehousenewsservice.com/regional_news/midwest/illinois/x1237133675

HOUSE SESSION: The Illinois House is in session. Story tentative, depending on action taken.

ILLINOIS BUSINESS

http://www.gatehousenewsservice.com/regional_news/midwest/illinois_business

Three-wheeled vehicle a new kind of hybrid

WASHINGTON, Ill. – Not every vehicle sold at on area car dealership comes with four wheels. The three-wheeled TriFun represents a whole new approach for the John Bearce Suzuki dealership in Washington, said general manager Tom Hobbs. By Steve Tarter of the Peoria Journal Star.

http://www.gatehousenewsservice.com/news/business/x1237132785

Endowments, charity funds feel pinch in economic downturn

JACKSONVILLE – As treasurer of a student-run investment fund, Illinois College student Myles McCabe says he’s learned a lesson in the school of hard knocks. The Warren Billhartz Student Investment Fund at IC has lost more than 9 percent since the first of the year. IC’s student-run fund is one of many endowment and charitable funds that, according to John Stremsterfer, executive director of the Sangamon County Community Foundation, are fielding the same kinds of anxious calls from donors as are individual investment advisers. By Tim Landis of the State Journal-Register. To localize: How are local endowment and charity funds faring during the economic downturn?

http://www.gatehousenewsservice.com/news/business/x1362394548

Illinois’ economy not as bad as country’s

SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois economy isn’t sliding as fast as the rest of the country, and a repeat of The Great Depression is not likely. A trio of University of Illinois economists weighed in Monday with their analysis of the recession and its effect on the state, as well assurances recession is not likely to turn into a repeat of the 1930s. By Tim Landis of the State Journal-Register.

http://www.gatehousenewsservice.com/regional_news/midwest/illinois/x1362394551

ILLINOIS LIFESTYLES

http://www.gatehousenewsservice.com/regional_news/midwest/illinois_lifestyle

Some seek answers from psychics during economic uncertainty

PEORIA HEIGHTS – Wall Street is tanking. Unemployment is soaring. Banks are foreclosing. Layoffs seem to happen somewhere close by every day. In the midst of these troubling, uncertain times, Peoria resident John Porter, who prefers the word "intuitive" over "psychic" as the descriptive title of his calling, is offering his own mystical brand of hope. By Scott Hilyard of the Peoria Journal Star.

http://www.gatehousenewsservice.com/regional_news/midwest/illinois/x844652723

Couple’s green home goal is lowering environmental damage

PEORIA – Cecile Arquette and her husband Steven Marx are on a green trajectory. Both have doctoral degrees, and research is an ingrained lifelong process. They’ve already researched and implemented the easy green options. Now they are pushing the limits. They want to quantify their carbon footprint. By Clare Howard of the Peoria Journal Star.

http://www.gatehousenewsservice.com/lifestyle/home_and_garden/x844652726

Childhood in Peoria is author's inspiration

PEORIA – Kate and Sarah Klise are living proof that one's childhood can have an impact on the future. Kate is the writer and Sarah illustrates their publications, which include award-winning children's books. During her visit to Peoria last week as part of the Big Read Peoria Reads activities, Kate Klise told an audience at Lakeview Library, "My childhood has always informed my writing." By Catharine Schaidle of the Peoria Journal Star.

http://www.gatehousenewsservice.com/regional_news/midwest/illinois/x1362394645

Hartsburg native finds model career

HARTSBURG – When a stranger approaches a 17-year-old female and tells her she should be a model, the statement may hald the potential to make the young lady uncomfortable. For Hartsburg native Natalie Jeckel McGee, it was just what she needed to hear. By Joshua Niziolkiewicz of the Lincoln Courier.

http://www.gatehousenewsservice.com/regional_news/midwest/illinois/x844652729

ILLINOIS OPINIONS

http://www.gatehousenewsservice.com/regional_news/midwest/illinois/opinions

BRITT: Toon on Blago and his book.

http://www.gatehousenewsservice.com/opinions/cartoons/x844653574

Phil Luciano: 'Octo-mom' needs dose of reality

Everyone has an opinion about "The Octo-mom," Nadya Suleman. Some think she's crazy. Others think she's selfish. But, perhaps most important to her children, she is unrealistic. Incredibly unrealistic.

http://www.gatehousenewsservice.com/regional_news/midwest/illinois/x1362394499

Editorial: Board of Ed needs more independence

In his 2004 State of the State speech, then-Gov. Rod Blagojevich pronounced the Illinois State Board of Education a “Soviet-style bureaucracy” in desperate need of reform. The legislature subsequently turned over control of ISBE to him. A bill passed by the House recently would restore some semblance of independence to the board. We urge the Senate and Gov. Pat Quinn to give it serious consideration. An editorial from the State Journal-Register.

http://www.gatehousenewsservice.com/regional_news/midwest/illinois/x1362394492

Editorial: Respecting the wishes of a fallen soldier's family

"War is hell," Civil War-era Gen. William Tucumseh Sherman famously observed. Nowadays, though, most Americans have not a clue about that unless they're actually serving in the field in Iraq or Afghanistan. Nearly all of what the folks back home see is sanitized, well-removed from the true effects of combat. That is why there is value in a recent Defense Department decision to overturn an 18-year ban on the media taking photos and videos of the flag-draped coffins of military personnel killed overseas being returned to the United States at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware. An editorial from the Peoria Journal Star.

http://www.gatehousenewsservice.com/opinions/editorials/x844652589

ILLINOIS SPORTS

http://www.gatehousenewsservice.com/regional_news/midwest/illinois/sports

ILLINI:

Basketball feature and notebook. Topics TBD. By John Supinie. Will be posted this evening.