Champaign County officials say they are facing a host of critical repairs and improvements that need to be made at county buildings but have been deferred for years.
In response, they have proposed a 0.25 percent sales tax referendum they say will cost a median-income household only $20 per year.
July was the hottest month in recorded history. And continued increases in temperature and a shift in rain patterns could mean a 15 percent yield loss in the next five to 25 years and up to a 73 average yield loss by the end of the next century if farming patterns don’t change significantly, University of Illinois finance professors Don Fullerton and Julian Reif laid out in a report released from the Institute of Government and Public Affairs last year.
ByNicole Anderson Cobb and Lois Yoksoulian/ For CU-Citizen Access |
A new fertilizer plant slated for Tuscola is further delayed and projected to be more costly than originally touted. This spring Cronus Chemicals quietly announced on its website that the estimated cost is now $1.9 billion – more than 30 percent above the original estimate. The website also says the plant will not be finished until the last quarter of 2019 – or at least 30 months later than the initial completion date.
Ants on the wall, a live cockroach next to a meat grinder, fruit flies “too numerous to count” and a bucket of bloody juice were some of the worst violations over a ten-month period in Champaign County restaurants.
In total, 39 restaurants in Champaign County failed health inspections – several more than once – from June 2015 to April 2016, according to a review of inspection records. An additional 7 restaurants failed and were temporarily closed.
Four others were closed because of non-payment of annual fees or missing paperwork
Keith Rohl remembers the day he was asked to lease the coal rights to his farmland in Homer, Illinois.
It was 2009, a wet year for the crops, when he was lined up at the grain elevator with his neighbors hearing about the proposed Bulldog Mine for the first time.
“The neighbors were all talking about, ‘You sell your coal rights, and you get to farm your land on top. You’re going to have all kinds of money and everything.’ And I thought ‘Boy, that sounds great to me, and I was ready to sign up,’ ” he said.
A new trade deal aimed at cutting thousands of taxes and opening markets with 11 Pacific Rim nations has drawn heavy lobbying from some of America’s largest agribusinesses.
The deal – known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership – was reached in early October. It is designed to ease the flow of goods between partner nations by lowering restrictive trade policies and regulations.