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Daily Archive : Friday December 14, 2012



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    Thieves stole a fresh-cut Christmas tree out of the bed of a pickup truck on the 1700 block of North Rose Street between 7:30 p.m. Dec. 8 and 5:30 a.m. Dec. 9. The tree was to be set up in the American Legion hall, reports added. Value was estimated at $60.

    Adam Hearn

    Lombard man gets 6˝ years in BlackFinn stabbing

    A Lombard man was sentenced to 6˝ years in prison Friday for the March 2011 stabbing of a bouncer at Naperville's BlackFinn American Saloon. Adam Hearn, 33, was convicted in October of armed violence after DuPage County Judge George Bakalis acquitted him of attempted murder and armed violence charges. Hearn knifed Sean Brutto during a melee that erupted when Hearn and his date were caught smoking...

    In this photo provided by the Newtown Bee, Connecticut State Police lead children from the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., following a reported shooting there Friday, Dec. 14, 2012.

    Man kills 26 at Connecticut school, including 20 kids

    A man killed his mother at home and then opened fire Friday inside the elementary school where she taught, massacring 26 people, including 20 children, as youngsters cowered in fear to the sound of gunshots echoing through the building and screams coming over the intercom. "Our hearts are broken today," a tearful President Barack Obama said.

    Fire crews work at the scene of a house fire on the 200 block of Knoxboro Lane near Barrington around 7 p.m. Friday. The attached garage sustained major damage, and the vehicles inside appeared to be a total loss.

    Firewall saves Barrington-area house

    A "fire wall" built between a two-story house and its attached garage may have helped prevent a fire that started in the garage from spreading in an unincorporated area near Barrington early Friday evening, authorities said. A small breezeway between the garage and the house includes the feature, and was able to limit the fire damage to the garage. "That's the best feature of the house," said...


    Elgin approves 2013 budget, property tax decrease

    The Elgin City Council approved the city's 2013 budget despite Councilman John Prigge's objecton that the budget unfairly supports the interests of a few groups at the expense of the majority of residents.

    A Free Syrian Army fighter fires at Syrian Army positions Friday in Tal Sheer, Aleppo province, Syria.

    U.S. troops to deploy at Syrian border

    INCIRLIK AIR BASE, TURKEY — The United States authorized on Friday the deployment of 400 troops for two Patriot missile-defense batteries along Turkey’s border with Syria, a move that could put American forces near the front lines of the Arab country’s escalating civil war.


    Waukegan man shot and killed in robbery attempt

    An intended robbery victim was shot and killed at his Waukegan apartment Thursday night when he tried to wrestle a gun away from an intruder, authorities said Friday. Randy Hardy, 46, was killed at 6:45 p.m. Thursday in the attempted robbery at the apartment complex on the 1600 block of Berwick Boulevard. Three people between the ages of 18 and 21 are in police custody and being questioned, with...

    President Barack Obama wipes his eye Friday as he speaks about the elementary school shooting in Newtown, Conn.

    Connecticut school shootings renew calls for stricter gun control

    The 20-year-old gunman who opened fire in a Connecticut elementary school Friday morning carried the kind of semiautomatic weapons that have become the bloody hallmark of the American gun massacre — and perpetual exhibits in the cyclical and never resolved debate about gun control that follows every similar killing spree.

    A woman comforts a young girl during a vigil service Friday for victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting, at St. Rose of Lima Roman Catholic Church in Newtown, Conn.

    How to help kids cope with news of school shootings

    What should parents do to help their children cope with the Connecticut school shootings? “Turn off the television,” said David Finkelhor, director of the Crimes Against Children Research Center at the University of New Hampshire. If weekend plans include decorating a Christmas tree, having a play date or attending a holiday concert, those things should go on.

    Marijuana plants flourish under the lights at a grow house in Denver.

    Obama: Pot use ‘not a priority’ where it’s now legal

    President Barack Obama said federal law enforcement authorities have "bigger fish to fry" than prosecution of marijuana users in the two states where voters decriminalized recreational use in last month's election.

    Deon Sams

    Former Maywood cop charged in Villa Park sex assault

    A former Maywood police officer stands accused of picking up a woman while on duty and later sexually assaulting her at a Villa Park hotel. Deon Sams, 38, of 212 Orchard in Bolingbrook, has been charged with two felony counts of criminal sexual assault and one felony count of official misconduct in connection with the March attack. He was being held Friday at the DuPage County jail.

    Herbert Burgess

    Defense presents its case in Mount Prospect man’s sex assault trial

    Seven defense witnesses, including two police detectives who previously testified for the prosecution, took the witness stand Friday as day four of Herbert Burgess's trial on charges he wrongfully detained and sexually assaulted a teenage boy drew to a close.


    Youth, adult dodgeball tournaments in Schaumburg

    The National Amateur Dodgeball Association (NADA) and dodgeball enthusiasts will take over the Sport Center, 1141 W. Irving Park Road in Schaumburg, on Jan. 2 and 5 during the Winter Nationals Indoor Dodgeball Championships. The youth competition is set for Jan. 2 for boys and girls in grades 4 to 12. Check-in will begin at 3:30 p.m. with matches following at 4 p.m.

    Noah Strandberg, 3, of Warrenville, high-fives Northern Illinois University mascot Victor E. Huskie on Friday in downtown Naperville. A group of NIU students traveled throughout the suburbs and city promoting the football team’s Jan. 1 trip to the Orange Bowl and handing out 2,000 oranges to fans.

    NIU students promote Orange Bowl game in suburbs, city

    Just moments after 10 students from Northern Illinois University stepped off their bus Friday in downtown Naperville, a car horn blared. "Go Huskies!" the driver shouted. And the students, flanked by mascot Victor E. Huskie, cheered and waved in return. Their stop outside Dean's Clothing at Main Street and Jackson Avenue was part of a marathon stunt that lasted more than 12 hours to support the...

    Metra commuters exiting the outbound train from Chicago at the Arlington Heights station Friday will see increases in 10-ride passes effective in February.

    Metra raises fares for passengers using 10-ride passes

    Despite objections, Metra leaders raised fares on 10-ride passes by 11 percent Friday, effective Feb. 1, 2013. The hike follows on the heels of a 30 percent increase in 10-ride passes instituted this February. "I have not seen sufficient justification for a fare increase," said Director Mike McCoy, who represents Kane County. He cast the one vote against the change.

    This is a sketch of what a proposed development in Buffalo Grove might look like.

    Buffalo Grove group seeks referendum on project

    A Buffalo Grove citizens group opposed to a massive downtown redevelopment proposal is asking the village board to put the question of its final approval to voters and then to abide by the outcome. If the proposal turns out to be something trustees themselves find fault with, a referendum would be an unnecessary expense, Save Buffalo Grove member Marilyn Weisberg said Friday.

    Mundelein High School sophomores Mariah Ruff, left, and Jazmine Rivera label boxes of fluorescent bulbs Friday at ReStore in Gurnee.

    Mundelein students volunteer at Habitat for Humanity store

    Mundelein High School's Black Student Union club volunteered Friday at ReStore, a retail shop benefitting Habitat for Humanity of Lake County. Next year, they'll help build a house with the group. "We take for granted what we have," junior Lexus Valentine said. "We don't think about having heat at home, and some people don't have it. Some people don't have homes."


    Flat tax levy for Round Lake Beach

    The Round Lake Beach village board this past week approved a tax levy, the amount to be collected in taxes in 2013, that is virtually the same as those adopted the past two years.


    Cook Library board meeting

    The Cook Memorial Public Library board will meet Tuesday to discuss Director Stephen Kershner's salary and other business.


    Four arrests at Gurnee Mills

    Four Wisconsin residents were arrested Thursday by police during an operation aimed at shoplifters at Gurnee Mills mall, authorities said.


    Pom, cheer competition

    Dozens of middle school pom and cheer teams from throughout the region will take part in the Hawthorn Spirit Invitational on Sunday, Dec. 16 at Hawthorn Middle School South, 600 N. Aspen Drive, Vernon Hills. The pom competition begins at 9:30 a.m. and the cheer section begins at 2 p.m.

    This July 2006 photo shows Nicholas Wieme at the Quarry Twin Theater in Pipestone, Minn. Wieme, a 23-year-old aspiring comedian, was attempting to take a photograph from atop the historic InterContinental Hotel in Chicago when he fell 22 feet down the building’s smokestack and later died.

    Autopsy rules Chicago smokestack death an accident

    The Cook County medical examiner released autopsy results Friday for Nicholas Wieme, a native of Pipestone, Minn., who was living in Chicago. Wieme died from injuries suffered from a fall down a chimney atop the InterContinental Hotel.


    Former Addison man sentenced to 50 years for child porn

    A former Addison man already serving time in a state prison for sexually assaulting a child has been sentenced to 50 years in federal prison for producing and receiving child pornography. Donald Anderson, 47, was sentenced this week to the maximum terms of 30 years for producing child pornography and 20 years for receiving child pornography, officials announced Friday.


    City opens dedicated bicycle lanes in Loop

    Downtown Chicago has its first two-way bike route with dedicated traffic signals. The bike lanes opened on Friday along Dearborn Street through the city's Loop neighborhood.


    Chicago man dies in police custody

    Investigators in Chicago are trying to figure out what caused a 38-year-old man to die after police twice shocked him with a stun gun. Police said Phillip Coleman was arrested Wednesday on charges that accused him of beating his 69-year-old mother.

    State Treasurer Dan Rutherford says lawmakers need to address the state’s pension problems and curtail spending. State lawmakers are due in Springfield in early January.

    Moody’s revises state’s credit outlook to negative

    Moody's Investors Services has revised Illinois' credit outlook from stable to negative, citing the state's pension funding shortfall and money management practices. Illinois Treasurer Dan Rutherford said Friday the move will affect taxpayers. "We're just basically making it harder and harder for tomorrow's generation," Rutherford said.

    State Reps. Daniel Biss and Elaine Nekritz talk about pension reform with the Daily Herald Editorial Board on Friday.

    Lawmakers want pension deal done by early January

    Top Democrats leading a push to cut teachers' retirement benefits said they have to try to get it done by early January in part because so many new lawmakers are soon going to Springfield that they'd have to educate from scratch. State Rep. Elaine Nekritz, a Northbrook Democrat, told the Daily Herald editorial board Friday that getting all of them up to speed on the debate over the state's...

    Chris Clark Streamwood fire chief

    Streamwood gets grant to hire 3 firefighters

    The Streamwood Fire Department will hire three new firefighters as a result of receiving a grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, an agency of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. The awarding of the $627,000 grant was announced Thursday by U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin.


    District 33 school board to address contract stalemate

    With teacher contract talks at a standstill in West Chicago Elementary District 33 and teachers threatening to strike as early as Jan. 7, the school board will hold a town-hall meeting Dec. 19 to discuss its offer with residents and answer questions. The session is scheduled for 7 p.m. at West Chicago Middle School, 238 E. Hazel St.

    Parents leave a staging area after being reunited with their children following a shooting at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., about 60 miles (96 kilometers) northeast of New York City, Friday, Dec. 14, 2012. An official with knowledge of Friday’s shooting said 27 people were dead, including 18 children. It was the worst school shooting in the country’s history.

    Images: Photos from Newtown, Connecticut
    A man opened fire Friday inside the Connecticut elementary school where his mother worked as a teacher, killing 26 people, including 20 children."Our hearts are broken today," a tearful President Barack Obama, struggling to maintain composure as he spoke about the incident.


    Woman in Arlington Heights fire killed self, authorities say

    A woman who died in a burning Arlington Heights apartment early Thursday morning committed suicide, authorities said Friday. The 36-year-old woman specifically died as a result of carbon monoxide intoxication, inhalation of smoke and soot and multiple incised wounds, according to the Cook County medical examiner's office.

    There will be expanded hours next year at the Sugar Grove library.

    Sugar Grove library to expand hours next year

    Sugar Grove library trustees have voted to expand the library's hours from 41 to 50 hours a week. The changes will take effect on Jan. 2 and also will include special drive-up hours on Mondays.


    Life, marriage require us to change, adapt

    Our Ken Potts says life continually challenges us with the need to adapt and change. This is true not only for individuals, but for marriages as well.

    The Robert Morris University football players run on the field on Sept. 3, 2011, for their first home game at Morris Field in Arlington Heights.

    Dist. 214, Robert Morris to upgrade stadium together

    District 214 and Robert Morris University have agreed to partner to upgrade the stadium at the Forest View Educational Center in Arlington Heights. "I am pleased with the (214) administration's ability to find creative ways to upgrade facilities at minimal cost to the taxpayers," said Board President James Perkins. "This is another great example of a collaboration resulting in a mutually...


    Electric car chargers now at Harper

    Drivers of electric vehicles now have a spot to charge their cars on the Harper College campus — part of an ongoing campus effort to become more environmentally friendly. A new two-vehicle charging unit has been installed in Parking Lot 14 near the Wojcik Conference Center on the main campus, 1200 W. Algonquin Road, Palatine.

    Voters in Wheaton Warrenville Unit District 200 may get a chance to vote in April on whether to fund plans to replace the aging Jefferson Early Childhood Center with a new building for the district’s youngest learners.

    District 200 nearing verdict on Jefferson referendum push

    Wheaton Warrenville Unit District 200 officials have slightly downsized a plan to replace the Jefferson Early Childhood Center in response to a community survey and recommendations from staff. After meeting with district and Jefferson officials, Chicago-based Legat Architects shaved off about 3,700 square feet from the proposed design for what now would be a 59,000-square-foot building on a...

    William Airey

    Lawsuit claims Moose CEO committed sex abuse in 1980

    A South Carolina man has filed a lawsuit in Ohio, claiming he was sexually abused in the 1980s by Moose International CEO William Airey. Airey, 71, of Aurora, has not been charged with any criminal action, although the suit claims he was investigated twice by Moose officials. Jason Peck seeks damages for emotional distress for abuse he said happened during two Moose related functions in Ohio and...

    Melissa Ziel, Gail Borden Public Library’s business librarian and e-book coordinator, demonstrates how to use the new 3M Cloud Library station, which allows people to download e-books wirelessly. The stations are located at the main library and the Rakow branch. $PHOTOCREDIT_ON$Laura Stoecker/$PHOTOCREDIT_OFF$

    Elgin library expands e-book technology

    Patrons of the Gail Borden Public Library in Elgin now can use new e-book wireless stations and soon will be able to get e-readers on loan from the library. Two 3M Cloud Library stations, one each at the main library and the Rakow branch, allow patrons to download e-books on iPhones and Android smartphones and Nook Color e-readers, said Denise Raleigh, division chief of public relations and...


    DNA test ordered in 1996 Highland Park slaying

    Lake County prosecutors and defense attorney for Louis Rozo requested DNA testing on any material found under the fingernails of a Highland Park murder victim Rozo was convicted of killing in 1996.


    CFO, new principal for Elk Grove HS named

    Cathy Johnson, chief financial officer at Morton High School District 201, will become associate superintendent for finance and operations at District 214, while Paul Kelly, social science/world language division head at John Hersey High School, has been named the new Elk Grove High School principal.

    Venezuela’s Vice President Nicolas Maduro, center, addresses the nation on live television flanked by Oil Minister Rafael Ramirez, left, and National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello at Miraflores presidential palace in Caracas, Venezuela, Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2012. Over the weekend, President Hugo Chavez named Maduro as his chosen political heir.

    Some Venezuelans see ‘Chavismo’ struggles brewing

    CARACAS, Venezuela — Hugo Chavez’s most influential allies are projecting an image of unity while the president recovers from cancer surgery in Cuba, standing side-by-side and pledging to uphold his socialist movement no matter what happens.

    Some climate change doubters said they believe their own eyes as they’ve watched thermometers rise, New York City subway tunnels flood, polar ice melt and Midwestern farm fields dry up.

    AP-GfK Poll: Science doubters say world is warming

    Nearly 4 out of 5 Americans now think temperatures are rising and that global warming will be a serious problem for the United States if nothing is done about it, a new Associated Press-GfK poll finds. Concern is growing faster among people who don't often trust scientists on the environment. Some of those doubters said they believe their own eyes as they've watched thermometers rise, New York...

    Herman Nackaerts, Deputy Director General and Head of the Department of Safeguards of the International Atomic Energy Agency, IAEA, talks to media after his arrival from Iran at Vienna’s Schwechat airport, Austria, on Friday, Dec. 14, 2012. Nackaerts says his team made headway during talks in Tehran meant to restart an investigation of suspicions the Islamic Republic may have secretly worked on a nuclear arms program. He says that means the U.N. nuclear agency expects to resume its probe early next year.

    UN nuke agency: progress on Iran nuclear program

    VIENNA — A senior U.N. official announced progress Friday in long-stalled efforts to resume a probe of suspicions that Iran may have worked to develop nuclear arms, saying the investigation could be restarted by early next year.

    The Red Gate bridge, here nearing completion a couple of months ago, will open to vehicular traffic Saturday.

    St. Charles ready to open Red Gate bridge over Fox River

    The No. 1 priority in St. Charles for the past three years will be checked off the list Saturday as the city opens the Red Gate bridge to automobile traffic. Residents of the city have paid, and will continue to pay, an extra tax for the project for several years. The fruit of that tax is a new crossing over the Fox River that is supposed to help ease congestion on the city's Main Street.

    J.R.R. Tolkien

    Tolkien class at Wis. university proves popular

    The vast collection of J.R.R. Tolkien manuscripts initially sold senior Joe Kirchoff on Marquette University, so when the school offered its first course devoted exclusively to the English author, Kirchoff wanted in. The only problem: It was full and he wasn't on the literature track. Undaunted, the 22-year-old political science and history major lobbied the English department and others starting...

    This isn’t the one being auctioned, but it it a 1965 Studebaker Wagonaire.

    Studebaker museum to auction off a ‘65 Wagonaire

    SOUTH BEND, Ind. — In the market for an older four-door station wagon that seats eight and don’t mind that it needs a little work? The Studebaker National Museum has just what you are looking for.


    Chicago man held in pregnant Ind. woman’s slaying

    A Chicago man has been arrested in northwest Indiana on charges of killing his pregnant girlfriend. The Times reports that 28-old Isiah Barker was in custody Friday on preliminary charges of murder and feticide. It wasn't clear whether he was being held in Lake County or Illinois.

    North Koreans chant slogans and gesture to show their determination near giant portraits of the late leaders Kim Il Sung, left, and Kim Jong Il during a mass rally organized to celebrate the success of a rocket launch that sent a satellite into space, on Kim Il Sung Square in Pyongyang, North Korea, Friday, Dec. 14, 2012.

    North Korea rocket launch shows young leader as gambler

    PYONGYANG, North Korea — A triumphant North Korea staged a mass rally of soldiers and civilians Friday to glorify the country’s young ruler, who took a big gamble this week in sending a satellite into orbit in defiance of international warnings.


    Kerry, Hagel front-runners to lead State, Defense

    Democratic Sen. John Kerry, who unsuccessfully sought the presidency in 2004 and has pined for the job of top diplomat, vaulted to the head of President Barack Obama's short list of secretary of state candidates after U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice suddenly withdrew from consideration to avoid a contentious confirmation fight with emboldened Republicans.

    Egyptian protesters chant slogans as they attend a demonstration in Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt, Friday, Dec. 14, 2012. Opposing sides in Egypt’s political crisis were staging rival rallies on Friday, the final day before voting starts on a contentious draft constitution that has plunged the country into turmoil and deeply divided the nation.

    Egyptian Islamists, opponents rally before vote

    CAIRO — Muslim clerics urged worshippers to vote “yes,” while thousands of supporters and opponents of a controversial draft constitution filled the streets of Cairo on Friday in dueling protests on the eve of a referendum on the charter that has left the country deeply polarized.

    Syrian Deputy Prime Minister Qadri Jamil smiles as answer to a question during a new conference who in Moscow on Friday, Dec. 14, 2012. Jamil came to meet with Mikhail Bogdanovv and his boss, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. Russia issued a clumsy denial Friday of a statement from its point man on Syria, who said a day earlier that Syrian President Bashar Assad is losing control of the country. The Foreign Ministry insisted it is not changing its stance on the embattled Syrian regime.

    Russia backtracks on statement about Assad’s fall

    MOSCOW — Russia issued a clumsy denial Friday of a statement from its point man on Syria, who said a day earlier that Syrian President Bashar Assad is losing control of the country. The Foreign Ministry insisted it is not changing its stance on the embattled Syrian regime.

    Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, left, talks with Col. Christopher E. Craige, Commander of the 39th Air Base Wing at Incirlik Air Base, Turkey, Friday, Dec. 14, 2012. Panetta stopped to visit troops in Turkey before heading home after spending three days in Afghanistan.

    Pentagon to send missiles, 400 troops to Turkey

    The U.S. will send two batteries of Patriot missiles and 400 troops to Turkey as part of a NATO force meant to protect Turkish territory from potential Syrian missile attack, the Pentagon said Friday.

    A woman holds a candle as she reacts during a vigil in support of Venezuela’s President Hugo Chavez in Caracas, Venezuela, Thursday, Dec. 13, 2012. Chavez is recovering favorably despite suffering complications during cancer surgery in Cuba, his Vice President Nicolas Maduro said Thursday amid uncertainty over the Venezuelan leader’s health crisis and the country’s political future.

    Chavez recovery “favorable” after complications

    CARACAS, Venezuela — President Hugo Chavez is recovering favorably despite suffering complications during cancer surgery in Cuba, his vice president said Thursday amid uncertainty over the Venezuelan leader’s health crisis and the country’s political future.


    Kane prosecutors on bullying: Speak up

    Officials at the Kane County State's Attorney's Office took their anti-bullying program to Batavia High School Thursday, saying there obviously is no magic bullet to stop all bullying, but that telling an adult, teacher or school resource officer and minimizing exposure to bullies are a good start toward changing it.


    Dawn Patrol: Hit-and-run victim honored; teachers threaten strike

    Students in Schaumburg held a memorial service for hit-and-run victim Mikias Tebebu. Teachers in West Chicago filed an intent to strike notice and could walk off the job Jan. 7. And a free car answered a Mundelein family's prayers.


    Schools struggle to collect fee money

    What's a school district to do? More and more families are not paying the fees associated with a suburban high school education, and literally tens of millions of dollars are going uncollected. "It's increasingly difficult for families to prioritize how they spend their money right now," said Chris McClain of Glenbard High School District 87. "It's hard on everyone."

    This is a poinsettia as seen through a macro lens.

    Images: Photo Contest Finalists
    Each week you submit your favorite photo. We pick the best of the bunch and select 12 finlaists. Here are the finalists for the week of December 10th.



    Sonia Limas, an illegal immigrant, makes cookies at her home in Texas. When healthcare reform has been fully implemented, illegal immigrants will make up the nation’s second-largest population of uninsured, or about 25 percent.

    Most states opt out of health exchanges

    More than half of the state exchanges to be created under the 2010 U.S. health-care overhaul are expected to be run by the federal government, offering insurers and consumers uniform criteria in at least those areas.

    The Facebook Inc. logo is displayed with the word “unchanged” prior to trading at the Nasdaq MarketSite in New York, U.S., on May 18, 2012.

    Facebook falls as lockup expires

    The stock tumbled 5.1 percent to $26.81 at the close in New York, the biggest drop since Sept. 24. Shares in the operator of the world's largest social-networking service have declined 29 percent since selling at $38 apiece in an initial public offering in May.


    FDA approves new drug for anthrax

    The Food and Drug Administration says raxibacumab will provide an alternative to antibiotic drugs that are currently the standard treatment for anthrax infection.

    Smog covers downtown Los Angeles.

    EPA to tighten standards for soot pollution

    In its first major regulation since the election, the Obama administration will impose a new air quality standard that reduces by 20 percent the maximum amount of soot released into the air from smokestacks, diesel trucks and other sources of pollution.

    Trader Peter Mancuso, center, works Friday on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.

    Stocks end week flat

    Apple, the most valuable company in the U.S., slumped Friday, helping to drag down the stock market. A lack of progress in federal budget talks also discouraged investors.

    Selim Bassoul, CEO of The Middleby Corp.

    Elgin’s Middleby expands operations in Australia

    The Middleby Corp. of Elgin is opening a full-service office in Australia. The expansion is made possible due to the strong mining industry and the growing Australian economy, according to the company.

    A rendering of River Haven Place in East Dundee, which features 68 duplexes and ranch homes for rent. Priority is given to military veterans and their immediate families.

    Veterans housing in East Dundee not attracting veterans

    Although there's an East Dundee subdivision that gives preference to military veterans and their immediate families, it seems interest is coming from everyone but those two groups. River Haven Place is still under construction on the northwest corner of Routes 25 and 72. But of the 30 phone calls that owner's representative, Anna Blair, receives a day on the homes, just one comes from a veteran.

    Associated Press/Nov. 23 A woman browses through a display of jewelry on sale at a J.C. Penney store in Las Vegas. In the midst of the busy holiday shopping season, when retailers can make up to 40 percent of their sales, promotions are actually down 5 percent.

    Holiday shoppers may see big discounts soon

    After a promising start to the holiday shopping season over the Thanksgiving weekend, sales have slowed.


    Tribune said to scrap Huawei Tablet plans

    Developers have failed to create software that runs smoothly on the MediaPad tablets from Huawei Technologies Co., China's largest maker of phone equipment.

    Deerfield-based Walgreen Co., the largest U.S. drugstore chain, was ordered to pay $16.6 million to resolve a lawsuit brought by California cities alleging the retailer tossed pesticides, paint and pharmaceutical waste into local landfills.

    Walgreen to pay $16.6 million in California waste case

    Walgreen Co., the largest U.S. drugstore chain, was ordered to pay $16.6 million to resolve a lawsuit brought by California cities alleging the retailer tossed pesticides, paint and pharmaceutical waste into local landfills. Judge Wynne Carvill in Oakland ordered the payment in a June lawsuit brought by Los Angeles and district attorneys in six California counties who claimed that more than 600 Walgreen stores unlawfully handled and disposed of hazardous materials over a six-year period.

    Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Kroger Co. are among the bidders for assets being sold by Hostess Brands Inc., the bankrupt maker of Wonder bread and Twinkies, said a person familiar with the matter.

    Hostess said to attract first-round bids From Wal-Mart, Kroger

    Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Kroger Co. are among the bidders for assets being sold by Hostess Brands Inc., the bankrupt maker of Wonder bread and Twinkies, said a person familiar with the matter. There are about two dozen bidders, said the person, who asked not to be named because the process is confidential. Last month, financial adviser Joshua Scherer of Perella Weinberg Partners LP said the liquidation sale may generate about $1 billion.

    U.S. factories rebounded in November from Superstorm Sandy, boosting production of cars, equipment and appliances. But after factoring out the impact from the storm, the broader trend in manufacturing remained weak. The Federal Reserve said Friday, Dec. 14, 2012, that factory output increased 1.1 percent in November from October. That offset a 1 percent decline in the previous, which was blamed on the storm.

    U.S. manufacturing output rises 1.1 pct. in November

    U.S. factories rebounded in November from Superstorm Sandy, boosting production of cars, equipment and appliances. But after factoring out the impact from the storm, the broader trend in manufacturing remained weak. The Federal Reserve said Friday that factory output increased 1.1 percent in November from October. That offset a 1 percent decline in the previous, which was blamed on the storm.

    A steep fall in gas costs pushed down a measure of U.S. consumer prices in December, keeping inflation mild. The seasonally adjusted consumer price index dropped 0.3 percent in November from October, the Labor Department said Friday, Dec. 14, 2012. Gas prices fell 7.4 percent, the steepest drop in nearly four years. That offset a 0.2 percent rise in food prices.

    Cheaper gas lowers U.S. consumer prices 0.3 percent

    A steep fall in gas costs pushed down a measure of U.S. consumer prices last month, keeping inflation mild. The seasonally adjusted consumer price index dropped 0.3 percent in November from October, the Labor Department said Friday. Gas prices fell 7.4 percent, the biggest drop in nearly four years. That offset a 0.2 percent rise in food prices. In the past year, consumer prices have risen 1.8 percent, down from October's 12-month increase of 2.2 percent.


    Discovery to buy Nordic TV networks for $1.7B

    The parent company of the Discovery Channel said Friday that it is buying 12 TV networks in Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Finland in a deal worth about $1.7 billion.


    Best Buy shares fall on Schulze bid extension

    Best Buy shares fell on Friday after the struggling electronics retailer said it extended the window for co-founder Richard Schulze to make a buyout bid until after the holiday season.


    OfficeMax wins retailer innovation award

    OfficeMax Inc. has received a 2012 Retailer Innovation Award from Store Brands Decisions for one of its new second-generation line of pens from its premium TUL brand.


    Study: Many unknowns but gas could mean Ill. jobs

    The New Albany Shale formation in southern Illinois could produce anywhere from a few thousand jobs to more than 40,000 jobs, but too little is known about the formation to be sure, according to a study paid for by the Illinois Chamber of Commerce.


    United Continental names CEO Smisek as chairman

    Jeff Smisek now has the controls at United Airlines.Smisek, the president CEO of United Continental Holdings Inc., will also become the company's chairman, effective Dec. 31. He is replacing Glenn Tilton.At the time of the 2010 merger of Continental Airlines and United Airlines, Smisek had been chairman and CEO of Continental, and Tilton of United. The merger agreement called for Smisek to become chairman of the combined company after two years.


    Dow Chemical opens new facility in Chicago

    The Dow Chemical Co. has opened a new sales facility in Chicago. The move downtown came after talks between Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Dow officials. Both sides say the facility on North Clark Street should bring in hundreds of new jobs over the next several years. A joint statement on Thursday says Dow didn't receive any special incentives to create the positions in Chicago.

    Senate Privacy, Technology and the Law subcommittee Chairman Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn. presides over the subcommittee’s hearing on “Protecting Mobile Privacy: Your Smartphones, Tablets, Cell Phones and Your Privacy,” on Capitol Hill in Washington.

    Senate takes step toward banning stalking software

    A loophole that permits software companies to sell cyberstalking apps that operate secretly on cellphones could soon be closed by Congress. The software is popular among jealous wives or husbands because it can continuously track the whereabouts of a spouse.The Senate Judiciary Committee approved a bill Thursday that makes it a crime for companies to make and intentionally operate a stalking app. The legislation, sponsored by Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., also would curb the appeal for such inexpensive and easy-to-use programs by requiring companies to disclose their existence on a target's phone.


    Oil rises above $86 as China factory data improves

    The price of oil rose above $86 a barrel Friday, boosted by a survey that showed the recovery in China's manufacturing is gathering strength. Benchmark crude for January delivery was up 90 cents to $86.79 per barrel at late afternoon Bangkok time in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract lost 88 cents to end at $85.89 per barrel in New York on Thursday.

    David Sheehan, representing the trustee for Bernard Madoff’s fraud victims, leaves federal court in New York.

    U.S. Says Madoff’s brother peter should get 10-year prison term

    Bernard Madoff's brother, Peter Madoff, should get a 10-year prison term for his role in perpetuating the multibillion-dollar fraud, U.S. prosecutors said Peter Madoff pleaded guilty in June in federal court in Manhattan to helping his brother pull off the biggest Ponzi scheme in U.S. history, though Peter denied knowing the business was a sham until the firm collapsed.

    People are reflected on the electronic board of a securities firm in Tokyo Thursday.

    World stocks mostly rise as Chinese output grows

    World stocks mostly swung higher Friday after a survey showed China's manufacturing production rose to a 14-month high, offsetting gloom from a sharp drop in Japanese business confidence.European markets were less upbeat after Standard & Poor's lowered its credit outlook on Britain, meaning there is a one in three chance the country could lose its top credit rating over the next year.


    South Korea says Samsung chip plant caused cancer

    A South Korean government agency says working at a Samsung Electronics factory caused the breast cancer of a worker who died earlier this year. Korea Workers' Compensation and Welfare Service said Friday there was a considerable causal relationship between the woman's cancer and her five years of work at a Samsung semiconductor plant in South Korea.


    ECB: ‘Tangible easing’ of crisis, risks remain

    The European Central Bank says there has been a "tangible easing" of stress on banks and markets from the eurozone debt crisis. It says risks remain, however, particularly if governments slow down their efforts to cut debt and deficits and improve growth. The bank is crediting its plan to buy the bonds of heavily indebted countries, which would lower their borrowing costs. European Union efforts to establish stronger banking oversight helped too, the bank said Friday.

    House Speaker John Boehner, a Republican from Ohio, center, speaks while Harry Reid, Democratic Senator from Nevada, left, and Mitch McConnell, Republican Senator from Kentucky, listen after meeting with U.S. President Barack Obama at the White House in Washington, D.C.

    Narrow ‘fiscal cliff’ bargain gains currency

    The White House and congressional Republicans are setting their sights on a more modest `fiscal cliff' deal to extend current tax rates for most Americans, raise rates for top earners but leave other, vexing issues for the new year, as hopes dim for a wide-ranging bargain.

    Mexican-American singer and reality TV star Jenni Rivera

    Owner of Rivera plane being investigated by DEA

    The company that owns a luxury jet that crashed and killed Mexican pop superstar Jenni Rivera is under investigation by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, and the agency seized two of its planes earlier this year as part of the ongoing probe.DEA spokeswoman Lisa Webb Johnson confirmed Thursday the planes owned by Las Vegas-based Starwood Management were seized in Texas and Arizona, but she declined to discuss details of the case.

    In this file photo dated Monday Dec. 3, 2012, participants listen to the speech of Hamdoun Toure, Secretary General of International Telecommunication Union, ITU, seen on screens, at the eleventh day of the World Conference on International Telecommunication in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

    Internet restrictions across the world

    Envoys in Dubai signed a new U.N. telecommunications treaty Friday that a U.S.-led delegation says endorses greater government control of the Internet. The U.S. and more than 20 other countries refused to ratify the accord by the 193-nation International Telecommunications Union.

    The new Google Maps application is demonstrated in New York.

    Google Maps return to iPhone with new mobile app

    Google Maps has found its way back to the iPhone. The world's most popular online mapping system returned late Wednesday with the release of the Google Maps iPhone app. The release comes nearly three months after Apple Inc. replaced Google Maps as the device's built-in navigation system and inserted its own map software into the latest version of its mobile operating system.

Life & Entertainment

    John (Mark Wahlberg) spends time with his talking stuffed bear (voiced by Seth MacFarlane) in “Ted.”

    ‘Ted,’ ‘Girls’ out on DVD

    Seth MacFarlane directed, produced and co-wrote "Ted." a box-office hit now on DVD about a man (Mark Wahlberg) and his brought-to-life stuffed bear. Ted is no family-friendly toy. He's grown-up John's best bud — a foul-mouthed, dope-smoking, sex-crazed creature (voiced by MacFarlane) who is messing with John's love life.

    Adele’s “21,” which recently passed the 10 million mark in sales, was Billboard’s top artist in 2012.

    Adele dominates another year with ‘21’

    It's another year and another Adele domination on the music charts: The British singer is Billboard's top artist of 2012. Billboard said Friday that Adele is the year's biggest artist and her diamond "21" album, released in February 2011, is this year's top album. Adele earned both prizes last year.


    Sally Struthers enters not guilty plea for DUI

    Sally Struthers has entered a not guilty plea on charges she drove drunk in Maine, where she was performing in a musical. The Portland Press Herald reports the 65-year-old Struthers did not appear in York District Court on Thursday, and entered the plea through her lawyer.

    One Direction, from left, Liam Payne, Zayn Malik, Harry Styles, Niall Horan and Louis Tomlinson, has been chosen by MTV as the network’s 2012 Artist of the Year.

    One Direction named MTV’s 2012 Artist of the Year

    They're platinum. They're fascinating. And now One Direction is MTV's 2012 Artist of the Year. MTV says the fivesome is "the clear choice for the top spot" after a year that included two No. 1 albums, hits such as "What Makes You Beautiful" and a sold-out world tour.

    The Rockettes perform their signature number “Parade of the Wooden Soldiers” during the “The Radio City Christmas Spectacular” at Rosemont's Akoo Theatre.

    Suburban dancers live the Rockettes dream

    Rockettes Gabrielle Del Re Ashley and Kristina Larson-Hauk will be home for the holidays this year. Yet it will be something of a busman's holiday for the suburban natives, who will spend most of the next two weeks performing two to three shows a day as part of "The Radio City Christmas Spectacular."


    On stage: Holiday spirit takes the spotlight

    Laugh it up and play holiday Bingo at the Metropolis Performing Arts Centre's latest holiday comedy and with former SNL castmember Chris Kattan at the Improv in Schaumburg. Or, check out the remount of the 1995 TurnAround and Steppenwolf theater production of "Faith Healer."

    “This Is 40”

    ‘This Is 40’ soundtrack full of highlights

    It doesn't matter if you're 40 or a fan of Judd Apatow, the soundtrack for the writer-director's latest film, "This Is 40," is worth checking out. It's a folksy blend of indie tunes, and as the film deals with the challenges of marriage and midlife, there are some heart-wrenching ones in the mix.

    “The Radio City Christmas Spectacular” returns, opening Dec. 14 at the Akoo Theatre in Rosemont.

    Countdown to Christmas: A day-by-day guide to holiday fun

    Shopping, baking and eccentric relatives got you down? Time for a breather. Here's our day-by-day guide to fun, festive entertainment events to get you through the rest of the holiday season.


    These energy-saving tips help get you cooking

    The average kitchen stove and range can use a lot of energy, and you'll certainly see this on your bills after a holiday with heavy cooking schedules. But there are some ways to save energy while using your electric or gas cooking appliances. Here are some super tips.


    Prospective heir has trouble finding late mother’s assets

    Q. My mother passed away three months ago, leaving behind a house with a mortgage that is fully paid and some other assets. The problem is that we never discussed her wishes for her estate because it made us both feel uncomfortable, and I don't even know if she had a written will.


    Is home inspector liable after one year?

    Q. When we bought our house, the home inspector found nothing wrong with the heating system. One month after moving in, we turned on the furnace but got no heat on the second floor. We immediately complained to the inspector.


    ‘Flippers’ will still be in business with FHA extension

    Rehabbers and real estate investors rejoice: You'll still be able to sell houses to first-time buyers who qualify for low down-payment, FHA-insured mortgages next year, even if you've owned the fixed-up property for less than 90 days.


    Book notes
    Author Randy L. Schmidt reads from and discusses his new book, "Yesterday Once More: The Carpenters Reader,"a book looking at 1970s recording artists Karen and Richard Carpenter, at 6 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 16, at the Metropolis Performing Arts Center in Arlington Heights.

    Bill Winterle carries his neighbor’s newspaper to her doorstep while shoveling his driveway during a major winter storm in Havertown, Pa. Make sure packages and newspapers aren’t sitting in your driveway day after day while you’re away for the holidays will help deter thieves.

    Closing up the house for the holidays: a checklist

    The flights have been booked, the suitcases retrieved from the attic and your vacation itinerary has been set. But while your mind may be ready to wander to a faraway land, don't forget about home sweet home just yet. Securing your home and making it look occupied while you're away on a winter vacation will help deter thieves.

    A prank forces oafish Skip (Josh Gad) to leave college and move back in with his dad — who happens to be the president of the United States — in NBC’s new sitcom “1600 Penn.”

    Politics takes back seat to family in NBC’s ‘1600 Penn’

    The first thing the creators of "1600 Penn" want you to know is that — title and setting notwithstanding — their new NBC sitcom isn't about politics. It's about a family. "There are shows that are doing (political comedy) brilliantly, like Veep,' and past shows that have done that dramatically, like West Wing.' This is neither of those shows," says executive producer Josh Gad, who also stars as chaos-inducing first son Skip Gilchrist in the series, which gets a sneak preview on Monday, Dec. 17.

    Designer Christina Lynn Miller decked out the dining room of a traditional English-country-style home.

    Holiday home, from merry to modern

    You may have grown up seeing nothing but red and green holiday decorations. These days, however, there's no single scheme that's considered suitable. One house can be trimmed like Santa's workshop, while another showcases a sophisticated palette of silver, copper and robin's-egg blue.


    Deck the halls — and everything else — in style

    If there's anything that really helps deck the halls, it's garland. We all know garland looks great circling the stairs and draped along the mantel, but where else can we add garland to punch up the decorations a notch?

    “Whiskey girl” Brooke Miner pours a Southern Hurricane at Toby Keith’s I Love This Bar & Grill in Rosemont.

    Diners and drinks right at home at Toby Keith’s

    The first Illinois location of growing mega-bar chain Toby Keith's I Love This Bar & Grill opened in August at the new MB Financial Park at Rosemont, offering a new hot spot for local country fans. Even if you're not a lover of the music, Toby Keith's is a hopping space where you can order up a beer, watch sports or just check out the crowd.

    Inverness’ Muirfield neighborhood maintains a small-town atmosphere.

    Open space, schools a highlight in Inverness neighborhood

    Karen Goettsche's first transaction as a Realtor 24 years ago was the purchase of a lot in the Muirfield subdivision in Inverness as an investment for her and her husband Jerry. But on second thought: "Wouldn't it be fun to live here," she said.



    Editorial: Go slow on crafting concealed carry law

    Now that a federal court has ruled Illinois' ban on carrying concealed weapons unconstitutional, the legislature and governor must take their time to craft a bill that treats public safety as the number one priority, a Daily Herald editorial says.


    Crashing federal hypocrisy on pot

    Columnist Froma Harrop: The successful ballot measures in Colorado and Washington give the Obama administration another opportunity to find its bearings and stop throwing billions down the hole of marijuana prohibition. That money could be put elsewhere, so we're told.


    America’s reluctant First Father

    Columnist Kathleen Parker: One of my great hopes for a Barack Obama administration — and thus one of my personal disappointments — was that he would use his bully pulpit to emphasize the importance of a two-parent family, and especially of fathers, to children's well-being. Few understand better than the president the value of a present and involved father.


    Nativity display does not discriminate
    Letter to the editor: Harold Knudsen takes issue with another letter writer over the debate involving a nativity scene in the Arlington Heights holiday lights display. "A display of the nativity discriminates against no one, and is supported, in fact guaranteed by the First Amendment," he writes.


    Wellness Place could use your donation
    Letter to the editor: Pamela Reiss, executive director of Wellness Place Cancer Education and Support, asks readers to consider keeping their donations close to home this year. "While donating at the national and global level is wonderful and necessary, many local, community-based charities provide the opportunity for us to see first-hand the impact we can make within our own communities," she writes.


    Wheeling board too reckless with money
    Letter to the editor: Jack Caldwell of Wheeling is critical of the village board's investment on 5.8 acres next to Prairie Park, saying there's no guarantee a developer will come along and the village will recoup its money.


    How will history judge Mulder?
    Letter to the editor: "If history is objective, the metamorphosis of Arlington Heights under the watch of Arlene Mulder as village president will be viewed mixed at best," writes Keith Moens of Arlington Heights.


    Park district ref didn’t convince her
    Letter to the editor: Cherryl Crouch of Arlington Heights says the park district didn't make its case for the tax increase it requested. "It's time for the park district to convince residents that they offer value for the money they currently receive-much less ask for more," she writes.


    Parody of hysteria was hysterical
    A Hawthorn Woods letter to the editor: Loved Charles Falk's recent Fence Post letter "We're on a course to ruination".


    Private, not government, help for hurricane victims
    A Wauconda letter to the editor: Hurricane Sandy was an awful catastrophe that affected thousands of people. Not all of the people were citizens, and I have qualms about that.


    A two-step fiscal solution
    An Arlington Heights letter to the editor: Two suggestions: 1. Stop spending. 2. Cut all programs and entitlements 10 percent across the board, including salaries.


    Don’t give up on Benghazi probe
    A Palatine letter to the editor: It is a fact that as commander in chief he is to protect our land and its citizens against all enemies foreign and domestic. In the case of Benghazi he failed on both counts.


    Walsh selling a lie about lower taxes
    An Arlington Heights letter to the editor: Joe Walsk has forgotten that he voted for this current fiscal cliff legislation that Speaker John Boehner and the president are negotiating.


    Quite a collection of crazy extremists
    A Glendale Heights letter to the editor: Einstein famously said, "The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." So, from this we know that the Republican Party is insane.


    We deserve answers on Benghazi deaths
    A Wheaton letter to the editor: Some historic and tragic battles have become memoralized for all times. Everyone remembers the the Alamo. The names of Jim Bowie and Davy Crockett and William B. Travis will remain for all time a symbol of American bravery and sacrifice.


    Rejection of right-wing extremism
    A Wheaton letter to the editor: When analyzing November's election results, let's be crystal clear. President Obama won handily in both the Electoral College and in the popular vote. In addition, the Democrats added two senatorial seats to its majority and reduced the Republican margin in the House.


    News judgment questionable
    A St. Charles letter to the editor: I am in general a fan of the Daily Herald but in some cases I think the question, "What is more important?" should be considered when deciding what newsworthy information belongs on Page 1.


    Don’t pick on cat foster mom
    A Bartlett letter to the editor: Let me see if I understand this correctly. The Village of South Elgin in its infinite wisdom has decided that a person who has devoted most of her life to abandoned animals is now breaking the law. The great majority of the animals that she has been responsible for have been dumped on her front porch.


    All sides must agree to spend less
    A St. Charles letter to the editor: This country must learn to live within its means. Congress must rise above partisan politics and do what we all must do — not spend more than we make. Will some people feel a financial punch? Of course. But if we don't act, and act now, all of us will suffer.


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