UPDATE: Champaign County Board approves a new district map — again.

UPDATE: The Champaign County Board approved a revised district map Thursday night. County board members voted along party lines to approve a map submitted by the board’s Democratic majority. It uses newly released Census data to revise a map approved last May. Republican Jim Goss criticized Democrats for calling their proposal an “equity” map — […]

The U.S. agriculture secretary says Mexico’s GMO ban won’t hurt corn exports

Mexico is phasing out genetically modified corn for human consumption by 2024. But U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said he’s been assured by his Mexican counterpart that the ban won’t shut off the biggest international customer for U.S. corn. U.S. farmers rely heavily on genetically modified crops. The crops contain altered DNA to withstand viruses […]

217 Today: Thursday, Oct. 21, 2021

Thursday, Oct. 21, 2021 Today’s headlines: After passing a major criminal justice reform law earlier this year, Democrats in Springfield are pushing for more progressive ideas, like allowing prisoners to vote and expanding parole. But Republicans are pushing back. From now through next Friday, Champaign County residents who have failed to pay fines related to […]

The FDA authorizes Moderna and J&J COVID vaccine boosters

WASHINGTON — The Food and Drug Administration authorized booster doses of the COVID-19 vaccines made by Moderna and Johnson & Johnson following unanimous votes by a committee of independent advisers backing the boosters last week. In a related decision, the FDA also authorized boosters that differ from the vaccine originally used to immunize a person […]

Urbana schools take COVID-19 tests to classrooms

URBANA – In three Urbana elementary schools, most students take COVID-19 tests once a week. And they barely have to step out of their classrooms. The schools are part of a pilot program Urbana School District #116 started this fall. “It’s been working really well,” says district Chief Information Officer John Gutzmer. “We’ve been able […]

GOP pushes public safety reform during light legislative week

SPRINGFIELD – The legislative action was light during the General Assembly’s first week of fall session, and lawmakers in both chambers left town a day early after leadership canceled the Thursday session. That means bigger items, such as a vote on congressional maps and potential changes to the Health Care Right of Conscience Act and […]