Daily Archive : Monday January 28, 2013

News

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    Kenneth S. Davis

    Two charged in downtown Naperville bar fight

    Two people were arrested and two others cited early Sunday morning after a fight at a downtown Naperville bar, authorities said Monday. The dispute occurred at 12:44 a.m. at Rizzo's, 6 W. Jefferson Ave., when a man grabbed a female by the throat on the restaurant/bar's second floor dance floor and tried to choke her, according to Naperville Police Sgt. Lou Cammiso.

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    Agency seeks Lake County volunteer

    The Agency on Aging of Northeastern Illinois seeks a Lake County resident or person employed in Lake County to represent the county on its advisory council.

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    State Senate President John Cullerton

    Cullerton wants votes on pensions and gay marriage

    Illinois Senate President John Cullerton said Monday that he'll push forward with a pension overhaul "as quickly as possible" and that the timing is right to legalize gay marriage and possibly expand gambling, previewing what could be a packed spring legislative session. Cullerton, who spoke to the City Club of Chicago, stressed the need for addressing Illinois' pension crisis, particularly after...

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    Why U-46 students may soon have school on Veterans Day

    U-46 is considering getting a waiver from the state to take Veterans Day off the list of holidays for which students can stay home. About a dozen veterans showed up to the Elgin Area School District U-46 school board meeting urging board members to keep kids in school on the holiday celebrating their service.

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    Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois Durbin and seven other senators announced plans Monday for immigration reform.

    Local groups herald senators' bipartisan immigration proposal

    A bipartisan group of U.S. Senators including Dick Durbin unveil an immigration reform proposal in Washington Monday. Back in Illinois, immigration reform groups are heralding the news, and say they plan to concentrate their immediate efforts describing current policies' hardship on families.

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    Terrie McCain of Round Lake voices his concerns after Round Lake Area Unit District 116 board members discussed their plan to restructure seven elementary schools in an effort to improve student academic achievement Monday night.

    Round Lake District 116 board votes to revamp grade-school learning

    Round Lake Area Unit District 116 board members have approved a tentative plan to significantly change how elementary school students are educated in an effort to improve academic performance. The move is supposed to result in improvements such as frequent monitoring of student progressm responsive approaches for struggling children, a clear mission guiding daily activities and strong leadership.

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    Schaumburg police facing drug conspiracy charges are, from left, Matthew Hudak, Terrance O'Brien and John Cichy.

    Drug charges dropped in cases worked by accused Schaumburg cops

    The fallout from the arrests of three undercover Schaumburg police officers accused of drug conspiracy continued today with Cook County prosecutors dismissing charges in three out of 15 drug cases that will be closed because of the officers' involvement. Prosecutors made the right decision in dismissing the cases, said Cook County Assistant Public Defender Joe Gump, who represented the public...

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    A statue of a Boy Scout stands in front of the National Scouting Museum in Irving, Texas. The Boy Scouts of America announced it is considering a dramatic retreat from its controversial policy of excluding gays as leaders and youth members.

    Suburban scoutmasters await decision on gays

    The Boy Scouts of America may soon give sponsors of troops the authority to decide whether to accept gays as scouts and leaders. Mike Ellman, assistant scoutmaster for Boy Scout Troop 100 in Naperville, said it's "ridiculous" to turn away competent leaders and aspiring Scouts because of their sexual orientation. Other local scoutmasters are taking a wait-and-see approach. “This is a...

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    President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama, daughters Malia, right, and Sasha walk across the square from the White House to St. John's Episcopal Church for Easter service in Washington.

    What will Michelle Obama do with 4 more years?

    Michelle Obama has a new look, both in person and online, and with the president's re-election, she has four more years as first lady, too. That's got many people wondering: What will she do with them?Take on a new cause? Travel more? Trace the path of another first lady and keep the Obama political brand alive by running for office? The answers are to be determined.

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    Gunmen rob Illinois churchgoers during service

    Police in East St. Louis are looking for three masked gunmen who walked into a church and robbed the people attending service.

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    16 sick in 5 states including Illinois linked to ground beef recall

    Federal health officials say at least 16 people in five states including Illinois have been sickened by salmonella food poisoning linked to ground beef.

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    10 Wisconsin students could be charged for drug sales

    Ten former students at a Brown County high school could face charges related to selling prescription drugs to classmates. A Green Bay Press-Gazette report says the Pulaski School District recently expelled nine students from Pulaski High School, and a tenth left the district. School authorities say the students were selling prescription drugs, most prescribed for attention-deficit disorder.

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    The Hoffman Estates village board didn't accept any bid Monday night for a fireworks vendor for this year's Northwest Fourth Fest at the Sears Centre Arena, as a result of complaints about last year's show.

    Hoffman Estates fussier about Fourth Fest fireworks this time

    One of four bids for this year's fireworks display at the Northwest Fourth Fest was $6,000 less than the others, but the Hoffman Estates village board agreed to move the measure forward without recommending any of them. Board members expressed concerns about the number of shells that each of the four bidders proposed to fire off at the festival. “I've heard nothing but grief about (last...

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    Illinois State Superintendent of Education Christopher Koch awards the Academic Excellence Award on Monday to River Trails Elementary District 26 schools Euclid Elementary School, represented by Lynn Fisher, and Indian Grove Elementary School, represented by Laura Gammons and Dane Delli. The awards were passed out at the John Jay Elementary School in Mount Prospect.

    Northwest suburban schools on Illinois Honor Roll

    The State Board of Education named 26 Northwest suburban elementary schools to the Illinois Honor Roll on Monday — half of them from one district alone. School districts receiving the honor included Wheeling Township District 21, Arlington Heights District 25, River Trails District 26, Schaumburg Township District 54, Mount Prospect District 57, Elk Grove Township District 59 and Des...

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    Proposal would keep U-46 fees flat next year

    Members of the Elgin Area School District U-46 board of education heard a proposal Monday to keep instructional fees flat next year for students in elementary school and make superficial changes to the fee structure in the middle and high chools. By rolling the locker combination lock fee into the instructional fee for older students, the district will ask parents for one payment, instead of two.

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    Aldermen say St. Charles taverns still spark too much crime

    St. Charles aldermen told downtown bar owners they still aren't doing a good enough job cleaning up problems with public intoxication and fighting. Earlier closing times are once again on the table if the next tavern update doesn't show better results.

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    David R. Schnittker

    Villa Park man charged in train station robbery

    A man claiming to be an undercover police officer robbed a man of $20 while patting him down at the Villa Park train station over the weekend, police said Monday. David Schnittker, 21, of the 400 block of North Douglas Avenue in Villa Park, was charged with aggravated robbery.

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    Jobless could become business owners in Wheeling

    Wheeling will be the launching pad for a plan to turn unemployed people into entrepreneurs, according to a presentation heard by the village board Monday night.

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    Frank Bart, left, and Mark F. Knigge, right, are candidates in the race for Wauconda Mayor in the 2013 Election.

    Wauconda mayoral hopeful attacks cops’ paychecks

    One of Wauconda's mayoral candidates is critical of the salaries earned by the town's police officers, calling the pay levels "unsustainable." When specifically asked if he thinks cops are overpaid, however, challenger Frank Bart wouldn't give a direct answer. Mayor Mark Knigge defended officers' paychecks.

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    President Barack Obama meets with police chiefs and county sheriffs Monday to discuss gun violence. From left are Minneapolis Police Chief Janee Harteau and Hennepin County (Minn.) Sheriff Richard W. Stanek.

    Police push for background checks on gun purchases

    Law enforcement leaders who met with President Barack Obama Monday urged him to focus on strengthening gun purchase background checks and mental health systems, but did not unify behind his more controversial gun control efforts.

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    Karen Lewis, president of the Chicago Teachers Union

    Union leader says Chicago schools have fake fiscal crisis

    The Chicago Teachers Union says an audited budget for the last school year showing an extra $344 million indicates the city's school district has manufactured a fiscal crisis. However, Chicago Public Schools officials say the money is budgeted for the current school year.

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    Relatives hold photographs of Pamella Lopes, who died in a nightclub fire, as they stand a public square near the nightclub in Santa Maria, Brazil, Monday.

    No alarm, only 1 exit in Brazil nightclub fire

    There was no fire alarm, no sprinklers, no fire escape. In violation of state safety codes, fire extinguishers were not spaced every 1,500 square feet, and there was only one exit. As the city buried its young Monday following Sunday's nightclub blaze that killed 231 people, questions were raised about whether Brazil is up to the task of ensuring the safety in venues for the World Cup next year,...

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    Leonardo Adames

    Man charged in Palatine retirement home break-in

    An Inverness man was arrested early Sunday after he broke into a Palatine retirement home, ripped a television off the wall and used it to bust out a window on a car parked outside, police said. When officers apprehended Leonardo Adames, the 33-year-old suspect claimed his friends left him at the facility after a night of clubbing and that he didn't remember anything else, Cmdr. Kurt Schroeder...

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    Army Sgt. Brendan Marrocco of Staten Island, N.Y., wearing a prosthetic arm, poses for a photo at the 9/11 Memorial in New York last July 4. Marrocco, 26, the first soldier to survive losing all four limbs in the Iraq war, has received a double-arm transplant in Baltimore.

    Soldier who lost 4 limbs has double-arm transplant

    The first soldier to survive after losing all four limbs in the Iraq war has received a double-arm transplant.Brendan Marrocco had the operation on Dec. 18 at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, his father said Monday. The 26-year-old Marrocco, who is from New York City, was injured by a roadside bomb in 2009.

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    Ex-Chicago police officer charged with corruption

    A former Chicago police officer is accused of attempting to extort a tow truck owner and selling firearms to the man, who is a felon. Ali Haleem is the 11th person charged as part of Operation Tow Scam, a federal probe of bribery and extortion involving Chicago police officers and towing truck operators that began in 2008.

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    Tammy Duckworth

    Suburban delegation reacts to immigration reform proposal
    A bipartisan group of U.S. Senators including Dick Durbin unveil an immigration reform proposal in Washington Monday. Back in Illinois, immigration reform groups are heralding the news, and say they plan to concentrate their immediate efforts describing current policies' hardship on families. Republicans, who have some work to do among Latino voters, hope that as a party, they can reach some...

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    Chicago police, elected officials, clergy, and community members show some of the recovered firearms from the 574 seized to date beginning Jan. 1. Police say the homicide rate is a reflection of the city’s gang problem and a proliferation of guns.

    Violent weekend puts city homicides at 40

    A bloody weekend in which seven people were killed and six wounded has put an abrupt end — at least for now — to hopes that Chicago was at least putting a lid on its frightening homicide rate. With a few days left in the month, the nation's third-largest city now finds itself on the cusp of its deadliest January in more than a decade.

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    New Lake County rules define ‘aggressive’ dogs

    The designation of "animal aggressive" for dogs that seriously injure or kill other animals allows Lake County authorities to impound the dog while an investigation is conducted. The new category applies to dogs that without justification cause serious injury or death to another owned animal and provides a clear direction of the steps that ensue.

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    Daily Herald File Photo Privatization, even if it’s temporary such as the 75-year deal with the Chicago Skyway, has its risks but it’s also a way to find capital with limited government dollars.

    To privatize or not to privatize? Some say it’s only way Illiana gets built

    Should the state trust a private firm to build the Illiana Expressway? Experts give the pros and cons at a Northwestern University forum. "Public-private partnerships are not free," investment banker Tom Lanctot said.

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    George Pradel

    Pradel says teamwork pulled Naperville from hard times

    A second consecutive year of increased sales tax revenues and a 9 percent spike in real estate transfer tax revenues have Naperville officials feeling confident about the city's economic future. Mayor George Pradel delivered his 18th annual State of the City address Monday at the recently renovated Chicago Naperville Marriott Hotel and said the teamwork that has helped the city attain new heights...

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    New Carol Stream Library Director Susan Westgate, whose first day was Monday, says she wants to change the negative perception some may have of the library.

    New library director begins work in Carol Stream

    The Carol Stream Public Library recently turned 50, but it's likely the past six months have been among its most tumultuous. In that time, the sharply divided library board of trustees fired its director, put a 7.5-acre vacant piece of land once intended for a new library on the market, and censured a longtime trustee. It's quite a time for Susan Westgate to start her new job.

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    Grayslake North grad to work for Yankees

    A 2009 graduate of Grayslake North High School has been hired in an off-field role for the New York Yankees.

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    Profiles in Excellence celebration in North Chicago

    Profiles in Excellence pays tribute to African-American educators from 3 to 5 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 3 at the Greenbelt Cultural Center, 1215 Green Bay Road in North Chicago.

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    St. Charles assessor hopeful sues to get back on ballot

    A man who was booted off the April 2013 ballot for St. Charles Township Assessor has sued to be reinstated, arguing that he would have been a township resident for over a year when the election was held. Gary Fritz was kicked off the ballot after an electoral board ruled that he was ineligible because he signed his statement of candidacy on Dec. 21, 2012, and courts have ruled that candidates...

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    Dist. 118 kindergarten registration to begins

    Kindergarten preregistration at the three elementary schools in Wauconda Unit District 118 is set for Wednesday, March 13 from 6 to 7:30 p.m.

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    Sullivan fitness rooms moving

    The cardio and weight training rooms at the Vernon Hills Park District's Sullivan Community Center will close permanently on Saturday, Feb. 2, with the equipment being moved to the new Lakeview Fitness Center, the former YMCA, at 700 Lakeview Parkway.

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    Woman gets 50 years in prison for murder

    A 59-year-old Chicago grandmother was sentenced to 50 years in prison in the stabbing death of a neighbor in a crime she says she doesn't remember.

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    Tri-Cities police reports
    A vehicle was stolen in the 1300 block of Wintergreen Terrace at an unknown time, according to a Batavia police report. The owner did not know it was gone until Aurora police found it abandoned after a traffic accident at 4:25 a.m. Sunday.

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    Susan V. Patton

    3 charged with hate crime outside St. Charles bar

    St. Charles police have arrested and charged three people with felonies of aggravated battery, hate crime and mob action after a confrontation at a bar on Jan. 6 escalated into a fight in the 2000 block of Route 38. Christopher Miner, 30, Susan Patton, 31, and Stephan Bolt, 31, are accused of kicking and punching two men while calling them anti-gay slurs.

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    Lt. Gov. Sheila Simon

    Simon creates firearms working group

    Lt. Gov. Sheila Simon wants new members of the Illinois General Assembly from both parties and from across the state to learn about different perspectives on gun ownership. Simon said Monday that she has about a dozen freshman representatives and senators who have said they will be members of her new Firearms Working Group.

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    Questions and answers on Illinois insurance exchange plans

    Here are some fast facts about how buying health insurance will change in Illinois as President Barack Obama's health overhaul takes effect and the first insurance exchange starts operating later this year.

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    Radio host indicted in $10 million fraud case

    A suburban lawyer who hosts a national radio talk show has been indicted for defrauding lenders out of nearly $10 million, authorities said. The U.S. atorney's office in Chicago announced the charges against Warren Ballentine on Monday.

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    Grainger Foundation pledges $100 million to U of I

    A $100 million donation to the University of Illinois College of Engineering will be used to recruit and retain top professors and to finance research in bioengineering and other areas, university officials said Monday.

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    Dist. 15 to send second survey on scheduling proposal

    Palatine Township Elementary District 15 officials are preparing to send a modified survey seeking input on a proposed scheduling change that's drawn sharp criticism from some parents, Superintendent Scott Thompson said.

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    Des Plaines board removes candidate’s name from ballot

    The Des Plaines Electoral Board on Monday removed Gregory Sarlo's name from the April 9 ballot, determining he fell just short of the number signatures needed to run for city alderman. Of the 72 signatures on Sarlo's nominating petition, 19 were found to be invalid, leaving him seven signatures shy of meeting the 60 required, the board ruled, finding in favor of objector Brian Burkross.

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    Des Plaines fundraiser for veteran’s monument

    Pillars of Honor is conducting a Veteran Valentine Challenge to raise funds to keep its Traveling World War II Memorial in circulation. Donations made will be matched dollar-for-dollar up to $5,000 through Valentine's Day.

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    Sen. Marco Rubio, a Florida Republican, wrote Sunday that the existing system of permitting illegal immigrants to stay in the U.S. amounts to “de facto amnesty,” and he called for “commonsense reform.”

    Senators pledge action on immigration reform

    Key Democratic and Republican senators are pledging to get a wide-ranging immigration bill through the Senate by summer even as they point to numerous pitfalls ahead. The group of eight senators unveiled proposals Monday to secure the border, allow more guest workers, require tougher verification measures by employers and create a path to citizenship for 11 million illegal immigrants already in...

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    Schaumburg Township Democrats to appeal removal from ballot

    Five Schaumburg Township Democrats removed last week from the April 9 ballot will appeal the ruling to a Cook County circuit court judge. "The voters of Schaumburg Township deserve a real election with real choices on April 9," party official Mike Cudzik wrote in a statement announcing the appeal.

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    Talk with the Editor: Building the suburbs' best calendar

    In this Talk with the Editor, John Lampinen introduces dailyherald.com's new events calendar and vows to make it the best in the suburbs.

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    Thoreson Saline

    Wheaton names newcomer to fill vacant council seat

    A candidate running in an uncontested race to represent Wheaton's east side has been named to fill a vacant seat on the city council. The council unanimously approved the appointment of W. Thoreson "Thor" Saline to an at-large seat. The position has been vacant since November, when Jeanne Ives resigned after her election in the 42nd state House District race.

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    Aladdin Mediterranean Grill has opened at Algonquin Commons.

    New eatery, kids’ clothing store open in Algonquin Commons

    The New Year is bringing with it changes at the Algonquin Commons shopping center along the Randall Road corridor. There are several new businesses coming to the outdoor mall — which already has more than 70 businesses — while an old favorite is closing.

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    Students stock inventory at the District 54 food pantry at Mead Junior High in Schaumburg.

    Rotary working to make sure kids have enough to eat

    A food pantry started at Mead Junior High by the Schaumburg/Hoffman Estates Rotary has been so successful, the club is going to start another one at Keller Junior High in the fall. It's all part of Rotary's efforts to make sure low-income students have enough to eat. Mead Principal Pete Hannigan said the Mead pantry is easy for parents to access. “The on-site food pantry took away the...

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    George Carr, a trustee with the Serra Club of DuPage County, stands in front of St. Michael Catholic Church in Wheaton, where he is a member and helps promote the club’s mission to encourage people to consider religious vocations.

    Serra Club of DuPage offers religious life as a career option

    The number of young men entering seminary to study for priesthood have inched up in recent years. The difficult economy may have something to do with it, but so do the efforts of organizations like the Serra Club of DuPage, which encourages people to consider vocations to the religious life. “We encourage an awareness of (religious) vocations,” said George Carr of Wheaton, who with...

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    Lisle Mayor Joe Broda is singing the praises of the village’s business development.

    Broda sings Lisle’s praises as business destination

    Mayor Joe Broda, the longest continuously serving public official in Lisle's history, reflected on the village's major accomplishments and outlined his goals for the coming year during his recent State of the Village address. Broda, who is running unopposed for re-election. Speaking to about 100 members of the Lisle Area Chamber of Commerce, Broda was introduced by chamber President and CEO Tom...

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    Preckwinkle endorses Hutchinson in 2nd District

    Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle says she's endorsing state Sen. Toi Hutchinson in the race to replace former Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr.

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    Lake County Health Department receives state mental health grant

    The state of Illinois has awarded a five-year grant of approximately $4.5 million to the Lake County Health Department /Community Health Center.

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    Tim Allen

    Winfield warned again about meeting procedure

    For the second time in five months, the Winfield village board has been chastised by the DuPage County state's attorney's office for violating the Open Meetings Act. The state's attorney's office has been monitoring the board's actions since it determined in September that village trustees violated the law during an Aug. 23 executive session.

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    South Elgin firefighters remove some of the burned contents Monday from a home on the 900 block of Kane Street in South Elgin.

    Dog’s grab for pizza may have started S. Elgin fire

    A dog jumping for a pizza box on the stove may have led to a Monday morning kitchen fire that left a South Elgin family with heavy damage to their duplex home. A fire official said the dog jumped up for a pizza box that was on the stove, knocking the burner switch into the "on" position. "Nobody was home so it extended up to the cabinets and into the kitchen," South Elgin and Countryside Fire...

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    South Shore service resumes following derailment

    Northern Indiana's South Shore commuter rail line has resumed service following a derailment that halted most train service for hours.

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    Schaumburg District 54 schools win excellence awards

    Thirteen schools in Schaumburg Township Elementary District 54 have received an Academic Excellence Award from the Illinois State Board of Education in recognition of their exemplary performance on the Illinois Standards Achievement Test from 2010 to 2012.

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    Venezuela VP reads typed Chavez letter at summit

    Venezuela's vice president read a letter from Hugo Chavez at a summit in Chile Monday, exhorting the region's leaders to show unity while criticizing the U.S. embargo on Cuba. The typewritten speech, about a dozen pages long, said the assumption of Cuban President Raul Castro as the rotating president of the CELAC group of Latin American and Caribbean leaders is a huge victory against U.S.

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    Australian radio show behind royal hoax canceled

    The Australian radio show behind a hoax phone call to the London hospital where the pregnant Duchess of Cambridge was being treated has been officially canceled. The show and the two DJs behind the prank in December were widely condemned after the death of a nurse who answered the phone and helped the DJs get confidential information about the former Kate Middleton's health.

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    A woman cries over the coffin of her boyfriend at a gymnasium where bodies were brought for identification in Santa Maria city, Rio Grande do Sul state, Brazil, Sunday. They were both at the Kiss nightclub when flames raced through the crowded club in southern Brazil early Sunday, killing more than 230 people as panicked partygoers gasped for breath in the smoke-filled air, stampeding toward a single exit partially blocked by those already dead.

    Arrests made in Brazil fire as funerals begin

    Brazilian police say they've made three arrests and are seeking a fourth person in connection with a nightclub fire that killed more than 230 people. Inspector Ranolfo Vieira Junior said at a Monday news conference that the arrests are for investigative purposes. More than 230 people died early Sunday during the fire at a university party in southern Brazil. Police have said they think a band's...

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    Swiss Jews fault president on Holocaust statement

    Swiss Jewish groups are faulting the country's president for failing to address the neutral country's failings during World War II in a statement marking the annual Holocaust remembrance day.

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    Sarai Sierra, of New York City, has reportedly gone missing during a solo trip to Turkey. She last contacted her family Monday, Jan. 21, the day she was to fly from Istanbul to New York.

    Istanbul police try to trace missing U.S. woman

    Police in Istanbul were scanning security camera footage Monday to try to trace a New York City woman who went missing while vacationing alone in the city, an official said. Sarai Sierra, 33, was last in touch her family on Jan. 21, the day she was supposed to fly home after two weeks in Turkey.

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    Russia is preparing to put lawyer Sergei Magnitsky on trial, even though he is dead, in the latest twist in a case that has severely strained U.S.-Russian relations. Magnitsky, a lawyer for the Hermitage Capital fund, died in jail in 2009 after accusing Russian officials of colluding in stealing $230 million from the state. He was arrested on suspicion of tax evasion by the same Interior Ministry officials he accused.

    Russia tries whistleblower, despite his death

    Russia is preparing to put lawyer Sergei Magnitsky on trial, even though he died in 2009, in the latest twist in a case that has become a byword for rampant Russian corruption and has severely strained U.S.-Russian relations.

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    Ex-Detroit mayor leaves prison after weekend stay

    Former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick has been released from a city lockup where he spent the weekend for violating parole in the 2008 criminal conviction that booted him from office. Kilpatrick left the Michigan Corrections Department facility in Detroit Monday morning. He had been locked up there since Friday afternoon.

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    2 guards killed in attack on Algerian gas pipeline

    A security official says gunmen attacked a gas pipeline in northern Algeria and killed two guards but were driven off. The gunmen fired homemade mortars late Sunday at the Ain Chikh pipeline near Djebahia, 75 miles southeast of the capital, Algiers.

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    In this from video obtained from the Sham News Network, which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, a pair of what activists say are tanks from President Bashar Assad regime in sit in a street in the Daraya neighborhood of Damascus, Syria, just before one of them fires a shot Friday. Troops battled rebels around Damascus in an effort to dislodge opposition fighters who have set up enclaves around the capital, including Daraya and Zabadani.

    Al-Qaida-linked group claims deadly Syria blast

    An al-Qaida-linked group fighting alongside Syrian rebels claimed responsibility Monday for a suicide car bombing that reportedly killed dozens of President Bashar Assad's loyalists last week.

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    Smoke rises after Egyptian protesters clash with police, unseen, in Port Said, Egypt, Sunday. Violence erupted briefly when some in the crowd fired guns and police responded with volleys of tear gas, witnesses said. State television reported 110 were injured.

    Egypt: Opposition rejects president’s dialogue

    Egypt's main opposition coalition has rejected the Islamist president's call for dialogue to resolve the country's political crisis, unless their conditions are met. Monday's announcement was made by reform leader Mohamed ElBaradei and other top figures in the National Salvation Front.

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    2 rescued after small plane crash on Hudson River

    Two people were rescued Sunday when their single-engine plane crashed and sank into the icy Hudson River off Yonkers, authorities said. The small plane was carrying a man and a woman on a sightseeing trip, and crashed about 5:20 p.m., Yonkers Police Lt. Phil Collins said. The two were wearing life vests and were able to get out of the plane before it sank, Collins said.

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    From left, first-grader Alana Schmidt, along with fifth-graders Lexi Lowe and Allison Campbell work with first-grade teacher Teri Runions, far right, to create blocks of pop art during Team Days at Illiopolis Elementary School in Illiopolis.

    Team Days bring kids together

    Like nearly all other school districts in the state, Sangamon Valley is feeling the pinch of shortfalls in funding, so when the art teacher at Illiopolis Elementary School moved on, the position wasn't filled. Core subjects like reading and math are important, but so is art, said Principal Debby Hawkins.

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    2 dead, 6 sickened in Chicago apartment building

    Authorities in Chicago are trying to determine if carbon monoxide killed two women and sent six other people to the hospital.

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    Toddler found wandering alone outside in Racine

    Sheriff's deputies say a toddler who was found wandering alone outside in Racine has been taken to a hospital as a precaution.

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    SW Indiana township tests aid applicants for drugs

    A southwestern Indiana township has begun giving drug tests to applicants for emergency assistance and denying aid for positive results.

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    Brazil blaze recalls pain for U.S. fire survivors

    Argentina, a year later. Thailand in 2008. Russia in 2009. For survivors of a 2003 nightclub fire in the state of Rhode Island that was one of the deadliest in U.S. history, the fire in Brazil that killed hundreds Sunday is the latest in a series of reminders that no matter how far away, those who ignore the lessons of their tragedy can pay a horrible cost.

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    Dawn Patrol: Winter warm-up on the way; Hawks keep perfect start

    Ice turns to thunderstorm as temperatures rise; Quinn signs bill giving undocumented immigrants access to licenses; suburbanites audition for America's Got Talent'; weather doesn't deter hardy' ski jumping fans; Hawks keep historic streak alive with win over Detroit; Two suburban skaters place in top 3 at National Championship.

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    Michael Drysch, center, a 50-year-old computer technician from McHenry celebrates after making a half-court shot to win $75,000 and a hug from LeBron James, during the second half between the Miami Heat and the Detroit Pistons, Friday in Miami. As part of a contest sponsored by James’ foundation, Drysch hit a one-handed hook shot from midcourt between periods in the game.

    Weekend in Review: $75,000 shot with LeBron; skater earns silver
    What you may have missed over the weekend: McHenry man talks about winning $75,000 with half-court shot; Blackhawks win their sixth straight; Quinn signs bill OKing licenses for illegal immigrants; suburbanites try out for "America's Got Talent"; 230 die in nightclub fire in Brazil; 'Argo' wins top honor at SAG Awards; and Elk Grove Village skater takes second at nationals.

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    Sandra Rogers

    New trial starts for woman convicted in hammer attack

    After spending most of the last 10 years behind bars on charges she attacked her ex-husband and his new wife with a sledgehammer in their Lincolnshire home, Sandra Rogers has a chance to prove her innocence starting Monday. Rogers' defense plans to blame the 2003 attack on her daughter, who was a teenager at the time.

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    Maybe your Metra conductor deserves a raise, especially if he holds the train for you, but what about that auditor?

    Why Metra approved raises for some employees

    Leaving the past behind is costing Metra a pretty penny. It's not just about paying the management consultants - it's about paying for the changes the consultants recommend - like raises for employees that will cost about $3.6 million. We dig into more details of significant pay raises that were approved last week amidst economic austerity elsewhere.

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    Elgin Police Det. Bill Wood has been the school resource officer at Elgin High School for the past four years. He's an avid supporter of specialized training to prepare lone officers to respond in critical instances where there is no time to wait for backup.

    Suburban schools not ready for armed teachers

    In the days following last month's mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, concerned parents started calling local educators to see what more could be done to keep their kids safe. Suburban school officials say they have no plans to arm their faculties. “The carrying, storage and use of firearms are not in the realm of expertise of educational professionals,” said Gary Chester,...

Sports

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    Girls basketball/Top 20
    Montini (25-1), Rolling Meadows (22-1) and Neuqua Valley (23-2) held the top 3 spots in this week's Daily Herald girls basketball Top 20 rankings.

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    Northwestern head coach Bill Carmody points at one of his players during the first half of their against Nebraska Saturday.

    Illinois: A sorry state of basketball

    Scot Gregor examines yet another year of lackluster college basketball in the state, as Illinois, DePaul, Northwestern, Loyola and UIC have all tailed off following promising starts. When the NCAA Tournament comes calling in March, will the Land of Lincoln be shut out again?

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    Michael Frolik, seen at right in practice with Marian Hossa, is willing to play any role Quenneville wants — including kill penalties.

    Frolik, Kruger hit penalty-killing niche

    When Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville was putting together his forward combinations for the penalty killing unit, there was something about Michal Frolik and Marcus Kruger he liked. So far Quenneville's instincts have been right on. Frolik and Kruger were instrumental in Sunday's overtime win over Detroit, leading a 6-for-6 penalty killing charge as the Hawks won for a franchise record sixth straight time to start the season.

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    The Bulls’ Jimmy Butler shoots over Charlotte’s Jeffery Taylor on his way to a career-high 19 points Monday night.

    Butler still delivers, this time off Bulls’ bench

    Anybody who has watched this event probably doesn’t see it as much of a reward, but Carlos Boozer spent time after a 93-85 victory over Charlotte talking up the rookie-sophomore game during NBA all-star weekend. “Quick shoutout: Get Jimmy Butler in the rookie-sophomore game,” Boozer said following Monday’s game at the United Center. “He deserves to be there. Can you guys write about that, do my man a favor?

  •  
    President Barack Obama caused some sports controversy when he talked about concussions and football.

    President Obama fears effects of football

    President Obama is a big football fan but told The New Republic that if he had a son he would have to consider not letting him play this vicious game. "It'll be a little less competition for Jack Harbaugh when he gets older," cracked 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh on Monday, referring to his 4-month old son.

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    Monday’s girls gymnastics scoreboard
    Here are the varsity girls gymnastics results from Monday's events, as reported to the Daily Herald.

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    Monday’s girls bowling scoreboard
    Here are the varsity girls bowling results from Monday's events, as reported to the Daily Herald.

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    Monday’s girls basketball scoreboard
    Here are the results from Monday's varsity girls basketball results as reported to the Daily Herald.

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    Monday’s boys swimming scoreboard
    Here are varsity boys swimming results from Monday's meets, as reported to the Daily Herald.

  •  

    Monday’s boys basketball scoreboard
    Here are the results from Monday's varsity boys basketball results as reported to the Daily Herald.

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    Lisle earns share of IEC title

    Kelly Urban scored 13 points and Kristina Fernette had 7 points and 14 rebounds, as Lisle clinched at least a share of the Interstate Eight Conference championship with a 37-28 win at Coal City on Monday. The Lions (21-5, 10-0) can clinch the outright title at home Thursday with a win over Peotone, which remained a game behind Lisle with a 59-49 win over Plano Monday.

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    Amelia Rafferty of Elk Grove performs her routine on the uneven parallel bars at the Prospect regional on Monday.

    Scala, Prospect claim 5th straight regional crown

    Six teams went above the 140.0 mark at the Mid-Suburban League conference meet last Friday, including Prospect (143.675) and Schaumburg (140.175). The scores got a bit tighter on Monday at the Prospect regional.Junior Gianna Scala gave host Prospect a lift by taking first in the all-around (37.7) leading the Knights to their fifth consecutive regional title with 139.85 points.

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    Leddy starting season off strong, despite injury

    Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville was praising Nick Leddy even before the 21-year-old defenseman scored in overtime Sunday to beat Detroit. Leddy has 5 points in six games and has been more consistent playing on the third paring with Wade Brookbank and Michael Rozsival.

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    Bulls’ recovering Rose has ‘already done a lot’ in practice

    As anniversaries go, this wasn't one to celebrate, but it's nice for Bulls fans to know nine months have passed since Derrick Rose suffered a torn ACL in his left knee late in a playoff game against Philadelphia last April 28.

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    Wheaton Academy hosted Walther Lutheran Monday night for girls basketball

    Images: Wheaton Academy vs. Walther Lutheran, girls basketball
    Wheaton Academy hosted Walther Lutheran Monday night for girls basketball

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    Ryan Roach and his mother Kim, left, and John Repplinger and his mother Justine. The boys are cousins and both guards on Lake Zurich’s boys basketball team; the moms are twins.

    Lake Zurich’s cousin guard combo is a package deal

    Ryan Roach and John Repplinger are both guards for Lake Zurich this year. They work well together on the court and are more than just cousins, they are also best friends who play other sports together as well and plan to be roommates in college.

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    Huntley wins 20th of season

    The Huntley girls basketball team notched its 20th win of the season Monday night, beating Wheeling 46-36 in a nonconference game at Wheeling.

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    Lloyd Jones, pictured with St. Charles East assistant girls basketball coach Sarah Seward, is a fixture at St. Charles East sporting events, especially basketball and volleyball games.

    Meet St. Charles East’s Super Fan

    He may not be St. Charles East's loudest fan but he is undoubtedly one of the school's most loyal supporters. Meet Lloyd Jones St. Charles East Super Fan. Whether it's a Saints home girls volleyball match or boys/girls basketball game, Jones likely can be found sitting in his customary spot along the wall just to the right of the main entrance to the gymnasium.

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    Charlotte Bobcats guard Ben Gordon, right, maintains his balance as Bulls forward Jimmy Butler defends during Monday’s first half at United Center.

    Butler scores 19 in Bulls victory

    Jimmy Butler scored a career-high 19 points and Nate Robinson added 15 as the Bulls defeated the Charlotte Bobcats 93-85 on Monday night at United Center. Luol Deng returned to the Bulls' lineup after missing five games with a hamstring injury, and scored 12 points in 31 minutes.

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    Cary-Grove’s Joslyn Nicholson, left, looks to pass against Stevenson last week.

    Burlington Central’s kiddie corps has exceeded expectations

    It's been well chronicled that Burlington Central girls basketball coach Mark Smith knew he had some talent coming in when he took the Rockets' head coaching job. And Smith knows talent. His daughter, Kelsey, plays at DePaul and as a boys baskeball coach for several seasons at St. Charles North, as well as a former high school and college player himself, Smith knows good players when he sees them. But even Smith admits being surprised at how well his freshman-laden team has done this season. At 19-4 overall and having secured their first Big Northern East championship since 2006-07, the Rockets also cracked the Daily Herald Top 20 this week for the first time this season, and they're the No. 1 seed in the upcoming Class 3A regional that they will host. Central has not won a girls basketball regional since 1990 and has only three regional banners in program history.

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    Extra motivation helped Terrazas when he needed it

    Vince Terrazas had extra motivation when he took the mat for the championship at 145 pounds at the DuPage Valley Conference tournament over the weekend.

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    Chicago Bears safety Chris Harris (46) celebrates with Anthony Adams (95) after Harris’ interception late in the NFL football game against the New York Jets on Sunday, Dec. 26, 2010, in Chicago. The Bears won 38-34.

    Bears bring Harris back to coach

    Chris Harris is back with the Bears for a third stint, but this time it's as a defensive quality control coach, not a player. Harris, 30, was drafted by the Bears in the sixth round in 2005 and had two tours of duty in Chicago, where he spent four of his eight NFL seasons.

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    Former Bear Plank to speak at Hampshire

    Former Chicago Bears great Doug Plank will be giving a presentation on college recruiting on Wednesday, Feb. 6 at Hampshire High School.Plank is now a national keynote speaker for Recruiting Realities and will give a presentation entitled “It’s a Game ... Know the Rules.” The presentation is intended to be a reality check for the families of student-athletes looking to get their degree and play at the college level.During his NFL career Plank, who went to Ohio State, was regarded as one of the hardest-hitting safeties in NFL history. The famed “46 defense” created by former Bears assistant coach Buddy Ryan was named after Plank’s No. 46 jersey. Plank also has an extensive background in radio and TV with Fox Sports and Westwood One. He is also currently the head coach of the Orlando Predators of the Arena Football League.“It may not be what some parents want to hear, but it is definitely what they need to hear,” Plank says of his presentation. “I’m primarily trying to get families to be realistic about the opportunities that are available and to get them to understand it’s about getting your education not about hitting the ball, kicking the ball, throwing the ball. It’s about finding the right match academically. There are a lot of student-athletes out there and less than one percent are going to a Division I school. However, you’ve got 99 percent of kids out there that can play at the college level in divisions other than DI. The key is finding the right school and financial package.”Parents will have the opportunity to hear the truth about college recruiting, the role of their high school coach, the impact of today’s social media and where parents fit into the process.Plank’s presentation will begin at 7 p.m. in the high school auditorium.For more on Plank’s presentation, log on to www.recruitingrealities.com.Hampshire baseball clinic: The Hampshire High School baseball program will hold an indoor evaluation clinic for 6th-8th graders on Saturday, Feb. 9 at the high school. Former Hampshire star Jacob Goebbert, currently a Houston Astros prospect, and Miami Marlins prospect Jake Smolinski will lead the evaluation committee along with a Major League Baseball scouting cross checker. Evaluations will be in arm strength, catching POP times, hitting and pitching. Check-in is at 8 a.m. and the clinic is from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. For further information contact John Sarna at john.sarna@d300.org. Each player will receive a T-shirt jersey with number along with a written evaluation.

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    Libertyville’s Buesing prepares to head (farther) north

    When he leaves work each day, Libertyville cross country coach Mark Buesing crosses the state border to his home in Bristol, Wis. In three months, the science teacher will really be crossing the border. Buesing is traveling to Greenland for two weeks in April to participate in NASA's Operation IceBridge, a six-year mission to map polar ice in unprecedented detail to better understand processes that connect the polar regions with the global climate system.

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    Fremd’s Farina fields a future at Illinois

    Leigh Farina has been the Fremd starting shortstop for two seasons. She still has two seasons left to play for coach Jim Weaver's varsity squad. But the next two years Farina will have a different title in front of her name Illinois recruit.

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    Mike North video: Do you watch the Pro Bowl?

    Mike North isn't a big fan of the Pro Bowl, but sponsors and players seem to like it. Surprisingly, it has a decent amount of viewers so keep the event going.

Business

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    U.S. stocks fell Monday, following the longest rally for the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index since 2004, as a drop in pending home sales overshadowed a rise in durable-goods orders while investors watched earnings.

    US stocks mixed after uneven economic signals

    U.S. stocks meandered between small gains and losses Monday, cooling off after a rally that had pushed the Standard & Poor's 500 index above 1,500 for the first time since December 2007. Encouraging news about manufacturing provided an early boost, but stocks fell later after a report on the pace of home sales fell short of expectations.

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    Motorola Solutions in Schaumburg has been named to the Global 100 list of the world's most sustainable corporations.

    Motorola Solutions among most sustainable companies

    Motorola Solutions said Monday it has been named to the Global 100 list of the world's most sustainable corporations. It's ranked No. 59 on the Global 100 and is one of 10 U.S. companies to earn a spot on the list this year. In preparing the Global 100 list, media and investment research company Corporate Knights evaluated about 4,000 mid- and large-cap stocks based on publicly available information.

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    Cracker Barrel plans to begin selling its some of its products in grocery stores.

    Cracker Barrel to sell its products in groceries

    Cracker Barrel plans to begin selling its some of its products in grocery stores. The Lebanon-based restaurant chain already sells items like pancake and corn muffin mixes, cobbler filling and syrup in the stores attached to its restaurants and online.But The Tennessean reports that the chain has signed a multiyear licensing agreement with John Morrell Food Group, a Smithfield Foods subsidiary, that will make those products available at grocery stores, mass merchandisers and other retail outlets.

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    The maker of the BlackBerry smartphone is promising a speedy browser, a superb typing experience and the ability to keep work and personal identities separate on the same phone, the fruit of a crucial, long-overdue makeover for the Canadian company.

    Crucial, long-overdue BlackBerry makeover arrives

    The maker of the BlackBerry smartphone is promising a speedy browser, a superb typing experience and the ability to keep work and personal identities separate on the same phone, the fruit of a crucial, long-overdue makeover for the Canadian company.

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    Apple has released a software update for iPhones and iPads that speeds up data downloads on some major overseas telecom networks and a handful of small U.S. carriers.

    Apple updates iPhone, iPad software

    Apple has released a software update for iPhones and iPads that speeds up data downloads on some major overseas telecom networks and a handful of small U.S. carriers.

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    J.C. Penney is still embracing its “fair and square” strategy as the cornerstone of its reinvention plan, and says the promotions will be targeted. But the latest tactic acknowledges that middle-income shoppers can’t be weaned off sales.

    They’re back: J. C. Penney adds sales

    J.C. Penney is bringing back sales. The struggling department store chain this week will begin adding some of the hundreds of sales it ditched last year in hopes of luring back shoppers who were turned off when the discounts disappeared.

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    Continental Tire plans $129 million expansion

    Continental Tire of the Americas plans to invest $129 million at its Mount Vernon plant in an expansion project that will create more than 100 new full-time jobs over the next three years.Company officials say the expansion is needed because of increased demand for Continental and General brand tires.

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    Grainger Foundation pledges $100M to UofI

    The Grainger Foundation of Lake Forest has pledged $100 million to the College of Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

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    Participants leave the Congress Center the last day of the 43rd Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum, WEF, in Davos, Switzerland.

    Davos women diminished as male discussion skips key views

    When it comes to advancing women to the highest levels of business and policy making, "We have to dare the difference and we have to speak about it," International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde told a World Economic Forum session on women leadership. Among the participants on Lagarde's female-dominated panel: Facebook Inc. Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg and Harvard University President Drew Gilpin Faust.

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    Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels

    Nazi Goebbels’ step-grandchildren hidden German billionaires

    In the spring of 1945, Harald Quandt, a 23-year-old officer in the German Luftwaffe, was being held as a prisoner of war by Allied forces in the Libyan port city of Benghazi when he received a farewell letter from his mother, Magda Goebbels -- the wife of Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels. The hand-written note confirmed the devastating news he had heard weeks earlier: his mother had committed suicide with her husband on May 1, after slipping their six children cyanide capsules in Adolf Hitler's underground bunker in Berlin.

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    Two Rolling Meadows shops celebrate openings

    A pair of Rolling Meadows businesses will celebrate grand openings Friday, Feb. 1, according to an announcement from the city of Rolling Meadows and its chamber of commerce. Annie's Resale for the World and Designers Point Kitchen and Bath Design will open in the Plum Grove Center, located on Plum Grove Road between Euclid Avenue and Kirchoff Road.

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    Shawn Georgetti climbs out of his John Deere tractor on his 167-acre family dairy farm in Avella, Pa. With royalties from a Range Resources gas well on his property, Georgetti has been able to buy newer farm equipment that’s bigger, faster, and more fuel-efficient.

    Billions in gas drilling royalties transform lives

    Private landowners are reaping billions of dollars in royalties each year from the boom in natural gas drilling, transforming lives and livelihoods even as the windfall provides only a modest boost to the broader economy. In Pennsylvania alone, royalty payments could top $1.2 billion for 2012, according to an Associated Press analysis that looked at state tax information, production records and estimates from the National Association of Royalty Owners.

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    Davos optimism downplays corruption, other risks

    The political, business and academic elites at the World Economic Forum expressed renewed optimism at the global economy, with more liquidity, more unity in Europe and the fiscal cliff scaled by U.S. politicians. But other risks — especially that of not doing enough to combat persistent corruption — are emerging as new threats to a fragile global economy beset by challenges.

  •  
    Caterpillar's fourth-quarter net income fell by half after it took a big charge for a deal in China that went bad, and because of slower growth in China and economic uncertainty in the U.S. and Europe.

    Caterpillar 4Q earnings fall by half

    Caterpillar's fourth-quarter net income fell by half after it took a big charge for a deal in China that went bad, and because of slower growth in China and economic uncertainty in the U.S. and Europe. Still, its adjusted profit and revenue were better than analysts expected. And while cautious about the global economic outlook, Caterpillar does expect conditions to pick up later in the year, outside of Europe. Shares rose 2.4 percent in premarket trading.

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    A downtown Providence Rhode Island theater is now setting aside a small number of seats — in the back — for those who promise to live-tweet from the performance using a special hash tag.

    Providence theater experiments with 'tweet seats'

    Sarah Bertness slipped into her seat at a recent staging of the musical "Million Dollar Quartet" and, when the lights dimmed, started doing something that's long been taboo inside theaters: typing away at her iPhone. The 26-year-old freelance writer from Providence wasn't being rude. She had a spot in the "tweet seat" section at the Providence Performing Arts Center. The downtown theater is now setting aside a small number of seats — in the back — for those who promise to live-tweet from the performance using a special hash tag.

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    An employee works on wiring harnesses at Stern Pinball Inc., the world’s only maker of arcade-quality pinball games, in Melrose Park.

    U.S. durable goods orders rise 4.6 pct. in December

    U.S. companies placed more orders for long-lasting goods in December from November, helped by large increase in aircraft demand. But businesses pulled back on orders that indicate investment plans. The Commerce Department says orders for durable goods increased 4.6 percent. The increase was driven by a 10 percent gain in aircraft orders.

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    Caterpillar still investigating Chinese accounting discrepancy

    Caterpillar Inc., the world's largest maker of construction and mining equipment, said it's still investigating the accounting discrepancy at a Chinese business that led to a $580 million writedown. The company took an 87-cents-a-share writedown in the fourth quarter after finding a "deliberate, multi-year, coordinated accounting misconduct" at its Zhengzhou Siwei Mechanical & Electrical Manufacturing Co. unit, Caterpillar said today in its fourth-quarter earnings statement. Caterpillar has identified "improper revenue recognition practices."

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    Gloria Steinem wearing a bracelet she created for ImagiNation 365. Steinem, Yoko Ono and Lauren Bush are joining forces to give female empowerment a global boost.

    Ono, Steinem join online campaign to empower women

    The artist, the feminist and the model are joining others worldwide to empower women in the marketplace through ethically-themed fashion. The campaign, called ImagiNation 365, is led by Maiden Nation, an online social platform. Yoko Ono, Gloria Steinem and Lauren Bush contributed by designing pieces of jewelry that express their vision. Other designers live in countries including Poland, Afghanistan, India, Argentina and South Africa. Four are teenagers from Grand Rapids, Mich.

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    Marque Gumbs plead guilty to grand larceny in Manhattan Supreme Court in New York. Gumbs, who worked for Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer, financed his lavish lifestyle by selling toner for copiers and printers that he stole from the hospital.

    A new market, black as ink, in NYC: printer toner

    Manhattan hospital clerk Marque Gumbs was doing so well moonlighting as a peddler of stolen property that he drove a BMW, shopped at designer stores like Burberry and vacationed in Las Vegas and Mexico. But unlike other more common thieves brazenly living beyond their means, his contraband wasn't jewelry or electronics — it was toner for copiers and printers.

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    Oil rises above $96 ahead of US data

    The price of oil rose slightly Monday, a sign of investor confidence in the U.S. economy's recovery ahead of the release of data on jobs, home sales and the country's overall growth. Benchmark oil for March delivery was up 14 cents to $96.02 per barrel at midday Bangkok time in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract fell 7 cents to close at $95.88 on the Nymex on Friday after a report showed a cooling off in new U.S. home sales.

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    Economists growing more upbeat about year ahead

    Economists are increasingly, but still cautiously, optimistic about growth in the year ahead with the hiring expected to pick up in coming months. A quarterly survey by the National Association for Business Economists released Monday shows half of the economists polled now expect real gross domestic product to grow between 2 and 4 percent in 2013. That's up from 36 percent of respondents who felt the same way three months earlier.

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    World stocks drift ahead of U.S. indicators

    World stock markets drifted Monday as investors awaited the release of key data this week for a clearer picture of the strength of the U.S. economic recovery. European stocks barely budged in early trading. Britain's FTSE 100 nudged less than 2 points higher at 6,258.88. Germany's DAX fell 0.1 percent to 7,853.55. France's CAC-40 also slipped about 0.1 percent to 3,775.14.

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    A couple walk by Lexus models displayed at a Toyota Motor Corp. showroom in Tokyo. Now it’s official: Toyota is once again the world’s top automaker.

    Toyota sold nearly 9.75 million vehicles last year

    Now it's official: Toyota is once again the world's top automaker. Toyota Motor Corp. released its tally for global vehicle sales for last year Monday at 9.748 million vehicles — a bigger number than the estimate it gave last month at about 9.7 million vehicles. It was already clear Toyota had dethroned General Motors Co. as the Detroit-based automaker fell short, selling 9.29 million vehicles.

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    The towboat Nature Way Endeavor banks a barge against the western bank of the Mississippi River, Sunday.

    Barge with 80,000 gallons oil hits bridge, leaks

    A barge laden with 80,000 gallons of oil struck a railroad bridge in Vicksburg, Miss., over the weekend, spilling light crude into the Mississippi River and closing the waterway for miles each way, the Coast Guard said. A second barge was damaged. Although an oily sheen was reported up to three miles downriver from Vicksburg, investigators were uncertain how much of the oil had spilled when the bridge was hit early Sunday, Coast Guard spokesman Lt. Ryan Gomez said.

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    Officials inspect an All Nippon Airways Boeing 787 which made an emergency landing at Takamatsu airport in Takamatsu, western Japan.

    Boeing 787 probe shifts to monitoring system maker

    The joint U.S. and Japanese investigation into the Boeing 787's battery problems has shifted from the battery-maker to the manufacturer of a monitoring system. Japan transport ministry official Shigeru Takano said Monday the probe into battery-maker GS Yuasa was over for now as no evidence was found it was the source of the problems. Ministry officials said they will inspect Kanto Aircraft Instrument Co. on Monday as part of the ongoing investigation.

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    From website videos to mentoring, new ideas to consider

    Website videos almost certainly will raise your business' standing on Internet search pages. That's reason enough to finally commit to video as part of your marketing program, but there are other reasons. Small Business Columnist Jim Kendall looks at a few.

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    Tim Condon

    Wings help Uncle Dougie’s fly with boost from investors

    Advertising executive Tim Condon of Elmhurst was hosting a party during the Master’s Golf Tournament in 2010 when a friend brought some chicken wings that literally changed his life.He liked the marinade used on those wings so much that he invested in the company, Uncle Dougie’s, which recently moved from Elgin to Chicago. “I remember asking him, “ok, how did you make them, Larry?’ And he kept saying Uncle Dougie’s. I finally asked again and he said it’s the marinade. You just grill them or throw them in the oven,” Condon said.So he went to a local Jewel store, bought a bottle and “had to find this Dougie guy.”He found Hampshire resident Doug Tomek, who founded Uncle Dougie’s in 1989 and has since dished up marinades, sauces, rubs, salad dressings and drink mixes without preservatives or fillers. The company playfully promotes the products with its “No Crap” symbol.Tomek found it hard for a small business to break through the maze of distributors to get the products out in front. So more investors were included and some of that money was used to relaunch the products, Condon said. So far, the products are used in Lettuce Entertain You restaurants and sold at Jewel, Sunset Foods, Woodman’s and Whole Foods, said Condon, who is also co-founder of Scahfer Condon Carter, an advertising agency in Chicago. While the products could hit the shelves of more stores soon, the men are enjoying their journey together as entrepreneurs, Condon said.“Doug is like a Renaissance Man,” said Condon. “He’s also a musician and enjoys playing the drums and guitar and likes to jam with us. He’s very creative.”Bergeron has influenceRuss Bergeron, CEO of Midwest Real Estate Data LLC in Lisle, has again been selected as one of the top 100 most influential real estate leaders at last week’s Inman Real Estate Connect in New York. The Inman 100 is an annual list of individuals whose actions have helped change the real estate industry in the last year through their leadership, innovation, ingenuity, power and persistence, the organization said.Brown heads to D.C. Greg Brown, CEO of Motorola Solutions in Schaumburg, is expected to head to Washington, D.C., in February to lead President Obama’s Business Roundtable and work on immigration reform. Brown said he’s likely to be involved with that group for the next four to six months. Honduras mission helps hospitalJohn Rapp, vice president of ministries and mission for Hinsdale-based Adventist Midwest Health, said about 30 people representing four of its hospitals traveled to Honduras to provide medical care and assistance to Hospital Adventista Valle de Angeles. Past missions have included Costa Rica, Ecuador and Ghana. FastTrackPam Hollander, senior director of marketing for Northbrook-based Allstate Insurance Co., said the insurance company, the National Association of Basketball Coaches and the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association have created the Allstate NABC Good Works Team and the Allstate WBCA Good Works Team. The awards will recognize college basketball student-athletes who stand out for their charitable achievements and community involvement. Mike Paradise will receive the national 2012 Clyde Hirt Media Award from Hinsdale-based Illinois Harness Horseman’s Association for his contributions to the publicity of Illinois harness horse racing. The award will be presented by the Harness Horsemen’s International at the Dan Patch Awards Banquet, the culminating event at the Harness Congress VI weekend in March.

  •  
    A personal family experience drove Ellen and Robert Simon to start For Papa’s Sake Home Care.

    Personal experience drives Arlington Heights home care firm
    We talk with the owners of an Arlington Heights family owned and locally operated nonmedical home care agency servicing the Northwest suburbs.

Life & Entertainment

  •  

    Once common, rate of hysterecomies declining

    Not until after the surgery did Sandra Nauer realize how sick she'd been. "Oh, my gosh, I had no idea I was in such bad shape," said Nauer, 44, of Galt, Calif. After years of excruciating back pain, fatigue and other symptoms, she had an outpatient hysterectomy on May 22 — and on June 7, she returned to work running her catering business.

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    This file photo provided by the Grayson County, Texas, Sheriffís Office shows Country singer Randy Travis. A prosecutor says the country music star is expected to enter a guilty plea in a drunken-driving case in North Texas.

    Country singer Randy Travis to enter DUI plea

    A prosecutor says country music star Randy Travis is expected to enter a guilty plea in a drunken-driving case in North Texas. Travis will plead guilty to misdemeanor drunken driving, punishable by up to two years in jail and a $4,000 fine, according to the prosecutor.

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    Actors Idina Menzel, left, and Taye Diggs arrive at the 19th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles on Sunday. When the couple arrived home from the awards they found an intruder in the garage. Diggs chased the suspect down and held him until police arrived.

    ‘Private Practice’ actor chases down burglary suspect

    Los Angeles police say actor Taye Diggs chased down and captured a burglary suspect he found rummaging through his garage. It happened after the "Private Practice" star and his wife returned to their Studio City home from the Screen Actors Guild Awards, where Diggs was a presenter.

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    This Jan. 22, 2013 photo shows American gospel singer and author Cissy Houston posing for a portrait in New York. Houston, mother of the late singer Whitney Houston, is releasing a book, “Remembering Whitney,” on Tuesday, Jan. 29.

    Whitney Houston’s mother has words for Bobby Brown

    Cissy Houston has a few words, and a few more, for Bobby Brown. In "Remembering Whitney," the mother of the late Whitney Houston writes that from the start she had doubted whether Brown was right for her daughter. "I do believe her life would have turned out differently," Houston writes.

  •  
    A woman smokes a cigarette during a break from work in downtown Chicago. New research published in the New England Journal of Medicine finds that women who smoke today have a much greater risk of dying from lung cancer than they did decades ago compared to those who never smoked.

    Women catch up to men on lung cancer risks

    U.S. women who smoke today have a much greater risk of dying from lung cancer than they did decades ago, partly because they are starting younger and smoking more — that is, they are lighting up like men, new research shows. Lung cancer risk leveled off in the 1980s for men but is still rising for women. "It's a massive failure in prevention," said one study leader, Dr. Michael Thun of the American Cancer Society.

  •  
    Barbara Walters has the chickenpox and remains hospitalized more than a week after falling and hitting her head at a pre-inaugural party in Washington on Jan. 19.

    Barbara Walters hospitalized with chicken pox

    Barbara Walters would probably like to hit the reset button on 2013. She's got the chickenpox and remains hospitalized more than a week after going in after falling and hitting her head at a pre-inaugural party in Washington on Jan. 19.

  •  
    With its two-hour season premiere Monday, “Dallas” carries on in familiar fashion, even though Larry Hagman, who played J.R. Ewing, died of cancer at 81 the day after Thanksgiving.

    ‘Dallas’ returns with J.R. Ewing’s final schemes

    "Dallas" viewers, however braced they are for J.R. Ewing's demise, will have to reckon with the loss of arguably TV's greatest villain, and bid farewell to the actor, Larry Hagman. This double loss would be a burden for any show. "Dallas," returning at 8 p.m. Monday, comes fully loaded. "I think viewers want closure," said Linda Gray. "They want to mourn Larry Hagman and J.R. Ewing." But all that comes later.

  •  
    Whether Beyoncé actually sang at the inauguration of President Barack Obama is a tempest in a teapot, but dig deeper and it reveals something about American society at this moment. In small ways, we seem to be constantly learning that the things we see and experience aren’t exactly what they’re billed to be — and that we may not care all that much.

    After Beyonce, a question: Can reality compete?

    In America these days, in countless tiny ways, much of what we see and experience isn't exactly what it seems. We know it, too. And often we don't care. Whether Beyoncé actually sang at last week's presidential inauguration — the jury's still out, and she's kept silent — is, on the surface, the textbook teapot tempest. Dig deeper, though, and the conversation — or lack of it — reveals something important about society at this moment. The big question is no longer whether reality matters. More to the point is this: Can reality compete?

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    Illness forces Morrissey to reschedule U.S. shows

    A spokeswoman for Morrissey says the former Smiths frontman and solo artist postponed several shows after being diagnosed with a bleeding ulcer. He missed a show last Saturday in Chicago.

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    Chris Brown is under investigation for an alleged assault in a West Hollywood parking lot, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said early Monday. Deputies responding to a report of six men fighting Sunday night found the scene clear, but were told by witnesses that there had been a brief fight over a parking space.

    Chris Brown investigated for possible assault

    Grammy-winning singer Chris Brown is under investigation for an alleged assault in a West Hollywood parking lot, the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department said early Monday. Deputies responding to a report of six men fighting Sunday night found the scene clear, but were told by witnesses that there had been a brief fight over a parking space.

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    What to do when your boss is the bully

    A reader asks what to do about a boss who is constantly leveling insults at work. Dr. Anthony Komaroff says when the insulting happens occasionally, it's easy to dismiss him or her as obnoxious, brush off the incident and move on. But when this kind of treatment is ongoing, moving on isn't as easy. Stopping these insults may not be within your power, especially when the perpetrator is your boss. But you can control how you react.

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    Registered nurse Rosemary Jones with the Jackson, Miss., Health Department gives a flu shot to Bill Staples. Federal officials estimate that this year’s flu vaccine is only about 60 percent effective.

    Changing flu virus spurs work on better vaccine

    The flu shot, it might be said, is the black sheep of the vaccine family. In good years, people ignore it because they think the flu is no big deal. In bad years — like this one — they complain that it doesn't work well enough. But the biggest problem, says Dr. Gregory Poland, a leading vaccine researcher, is that scientists are still scrambling to understand the elusive virus and come up with a better alternative.

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    Dr. Doug Scharre, left, and Dr. Punit Agrawal, center, prepare Kathleen Sanford's deep brain stimulation device for monitoring.

    Researchers test brain pacemakers in fight against Alzheimer's

    It has the makings of a science fiction movie: Zap someone's brain with mild jolts of electricity to try to stave off the creeping memory loss of Alzheimer's disease. And it's not easy. Holes are drilled into the patient's skull so tiny wires can be implanted into just the right spot.

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    Drinking too much cannot only affect your health, but your appearance as well. A new app can show you how you might look in the future with your current drinking habits.

    Your health: A sobering picture
    Wonder what you might look like down the road if you don't cut back on your alcohol intake? There's an app for that! And learn what superfoods are best when you reach 50 and beyond.

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    Many car enthusiasts displayed their work at the third annual Custom Rides Car Show and Expo in Tinley Park.

    Car enthusiasts find a fix with indoor winter show

    Midwest winters can drag on, leaving cruising enthusiasts hungering eagerly for spring. To help tide their motoring appetites, there are a few special events each season, like the Custom Rides Car Show and Expo, held last weekend at the Tinley Park Convention Center.

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    Two overweight women hold a conversation in New York. A new poll suggests that while more than 7 in 10 Americans can correctly tick off heart disease and diabetes as obesity’s most serious consequences, few Americans are aware of the lesser-known health consequences — such as worsening some types of cancer, arthritis, sleep apnea and even infertility.

    Few Americans know obesity risks, poll finds

    Heart disease and diabetes get all the attention, but what about the many other ways obesity can damage your health? Carrying too many pounds may lead to or worsen some types of cancer, arthritis, sleep apnea, even infertility. But a new poll suggests few Americans realize the links.

Discuss

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    Editorial: Sincere budget work needed in Senate

    While there's merit to U.S. Rep. Randy Hultgren's proposal to required the Senate to pass a budget or forfeit their paychecks, what's needed is real effort in Congress, a Daily Herald editorial says.

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    Editorial: Sincere budget work needed in Senate

    While there's merit to U.S. Rep. Randy Hultgren's proposal to required the Senate to pass a budget or forfeit their paychecks, what's needed is real effort in Congress, a Daily Herald editorial says.

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    The sirens of the Pentagon

    Columnist Kathleen Parker: Ground combat is one area in which women, through quirks of biology and human nature, are not equal to men — a difference that should be celebrated rather than rationalized as incorrect.

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    Obama unbound

    Columnist Charles Krauthammer: President Obama's mission is to redeem and resurrect the 50-year pre-Reagan liberal ascendancy. Accordingly, his second inaugural address, ideologically unapologetic and aggressive, is his historical marker, his self-proclamation as the Reagan of the left. If he succeeds in these next four years, he will have earned the title.

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    The thinking gets better, the second term around

    Columnist Froma Harrop: President Obama's vow to pursue a liberal agenda in the second term is, contrary to conventional discourse, a good way to work across the aisle. The debates over health care and raising the debt ceiling got so nasty, in part, because Obama wouldn't draw lines and defend them. Republicans couldn't tell how far he'd compromise, fueling hopes on the fringes.

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    Too much was spent on inauguration
    An Arlington Heights letter to the editor: After watching the highlights on Tuesday I was so upset over how many big-name entertainers were present during the celebration and parties, all I could see were dollar signs.

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    Defined benefit plans cannot be sustained
    A letter to the editor: It is virtually impossible for governments to ensure there will be enough money in defined benefit plans to make guaranteed payments to retirees. That's why this system is so problematic. Who should make up the shortfall when the retirement funds lose money due to stock market corrections?

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    Dillard’s record on ethics is solid
    A Hinsdale letter to the editor: Contrary to the views of the "ax-to-grind" letter writer, anytime a Democrat works with me on a Republican principle such as ethics, I may not "endorse" them but I will commend them.

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