Daily Archive : Wednesday July 17, 2013


    Toni Preckwinkle

    Cook County adds to list of banned guns

    The Cook County Board today voted to ban the sale of guns to people under 21, restrict how people with children at home store their ammunition and add firearms to its list of banned so-called assault weapons.

    Buffalo Grove is afraid that with a smoking ban, people at concerts would go around the fence and stand too close to Lake-Cook Road in order to smoke.

    No total smoking ban for Buffalo Grove Days

    Buffalo Grove will stick with the current smoking policy for Buffalo Grove Days, at least this year. Weeks after Trustee Michael Terson made an impassioned case for a complete smoking ban at the fest, held over the long Labor Day weekend, the board decided not to change the current rules.


    Residential recycling contract talks begin in Naperville

    Larger recycling carts and a goal of diverting more waste from landfills likely are on the horizon for Naperville, but city council members first want to discuss the best way to contract for recycling pickup services. Talks began Tuesday, when Public Works Director Dick Dublinski presented a proposal to extend the city’s recycling contract with Resource Management until 2021 and to begin using...

    From left, Krissy Altersohn, of Geneva, Ashley McLeod, of St. Charles, and Lindsey Pazerunas, of Inverness, show each other some love before their final practice.

    Down syndrome no barrier to running Sunday’s half-marathon

    Allie Reninger has endured multiple surgeries, including repairs to her knees, hips and even her spine, and didn’t walk until she was 5. But Reninger, who has Down syndrome, will run in Sunday's Rock n' Roll three-mile mini-marathon along with many of her friends from the suburbs.

    Rosan Acosta, who is homeless in Arlington Heights, talks about having her bicycle and belongings torched by an arsonist in an Arlington Heights parking garage.

    Homeless woman doing OK after belongings torched

    Rosan Acosta misses her bicycle most of all. The homeless Arlington Hts. woman lost her belongings Tuesday when someone set them on fire in a parking garage, while she was staying cool in the library. "I'm just playing it by ear," she said Wednesday, taking her loss in stride.


    Palatine commission again supports controversial housing project

    The Palatine Plan Commission on Tuesday again voted 7 to 1 in favor of recommending the Catherine Alice Gardens permanent supportive housing development for people with disabilities.

    A previous Shakespeare in the Park performance drew more than 500 people to Geneva's Island Park.

    'The Comedy of Errors' in Geneva's Island Park

    Comedy and confusion reign supreme in this year's Shakespeare in the Park performance in Geneva. The Midsummer Theater Troupe will perform “The Comedy of Errors” at 6 p.m. Saturday, July 20, in Island Park. “What makes this play so funny is the mistaken identities. It creates confusion, havoc and mayhem in the town,” says troop member Kristen Duerdoth.

    The Kane County Fair opens at the Kane County Fair Grounds in St. Charles on Wednesday. Discounted ride wristbands, coupons for entrance fees and other promotions are available on the fair’s $START_URL$website;http://kanecountyfair.com/$STOP_URL$.

    Kane County Fair kicks off its 145th year

    A father and son duo stand just outside the pigpens in the swine building at the Kane County Fairgrounds, squirting down their five Barrow hogs to keep them cool in the sweltering heat. This is Clay Cargola’s second year showing the family’s pigs from their Sugar Grove farm. His dad, Tony, is there to help his son at the 145th Kane County Fair, which opened its 5-day run at noon Wednesday in...

    Construction began with a groundbreaking Wednesday on the Naperville Park District's first staffed nature center, a 5,000-square-foot facility that will focus on water at the site where the east and west branches of the DuPage River converge — Knoch Knolls park.

    Nature center coming to Naperville's Knoch Knolls

    Knoch Knolls park in south Naperville is on track to welcome the Naperville Park District's first staffed nature center by the autumn of 2014. Park district officials, city and state leaders and descendants of original Knoch Knolls land owners Win and Irene Knoch gathered Wednesday for a groundbreaking at the future site of the nature center.

    Vernon Hills Police dispatcher Sarah Silliman works in the Vernon Hills dispatch center.

    Lincolnshire to outsource police dispatch to Vernon Hills

    As of Oct. 1, calls for police service in Lincolnshire will be answered by dispatchers in Vernon Hills. Lincolnshire decided to outsource the service as a cost-saving measure.

    A legislative deal in Congress would offer students lower interest rates on loans for school through the 2015 academic year, but then rates were expected to climb above where they were when students left campus this spring.

    AP sources: Senators reach deal on student loans

    Heading off a costly rate increase for returning college students, a bipartisan group of senators reached a deal Wednesday that would offer students better rates this fall but perhaps assign higher rates in coming years.

    A passerby pauses for a drink from an open hydrant on the corner beside the Jackie Robinson Community Garden, Wednesday in New York.

    Heat blankets much of US as summer sizzles

    From South Dakota to Massachusetts temperatures surged to potentially dangerous levels Wednesday as the largest heat wave of the summer stretched out and stagnated, with relief in many parts of the country still days away.

    Illinois House Republican Tom Cross of Oswego won’t run for attorney general.

    Cross won’t run for attorney general

    Illinois House Republican Leader Tom Cross of Oswego won’t run for attorney general, saying Democrat Lisa Madigan’s re-election plans have changed the “dynamic” of the race.

    Former Metra CEO Alex Clifford speaks Wednesday to his attorney Michael Shakman before answering a question during the RTA board.

    Metra ex-CEO, chairman agree only that someone’s lying

    Someone’s lying was the only thing Metra leaders and their ex-CEO Alex Clifford agreed upon in contradictory testimony about conflicts of interest and political gravy trains during a RTA hearing Wednesday. “I refused to accede to the requests of some very powerful politicians in Illinois,” a defiant Clifford said. "What we heard today was a whole lot of hooey," Chairman Brad O'Halloran said.

    Rose Milo of Algonquin watches re-enactor Ken Gough of Elgin use an 1854 Wheeler and Wilson lockstitch sewing machine in an 1860s era cabin during a Civil War encampment at the 2008 Heritage Fest in West Dundee. This year, East Dundee and West Dundee will co-host the fest.

    East and West Dundee partner for Heritage Fest

    Although East Dundee and West Dundee lie just a river apart from each other, the communities haven't been as close as officials would have liked. That appears to be changing, though, as authorities from both towns are jointly holding Heritage Fest in September. In previous years, the festival has been a West Dundee affair only, but things started to change on election night in April.

    From left to right, Deputy Attorney General James Cole; Robert S. Litt, general counsel in the Office of Director of National Intelligence; and National Security Agency Deputy Director John C. Inglis testify at a House Judiciary hearing on domestic spying on Capitol Hill Wednesday.

    NSA spying under fire: ‘You’ve got a problem’

    In a heated confrontation over domestic spying, members of Congress said Wednesday they never intended to allow the National Security Agency to build a database of every phone call in America. And they threatened to curtail the government’s surveillance authority.

    Office Dennis Vafier of the Alexandria Police Dept., uses a laptop in his squad car to scan vehicle license plates during his patrols, Tuesday, July 16, 2013 in Alexandria, Va. Local police departments across the country have amassed millions of digital records on the location and movements of vehicles with a license plate using automated scanners.

    Driving somewhere? There’s a gov’t record of that

    A rapidly growing network of police cameras is capturing, storing and sharing data on license plates, making it possible to stitch together people’s movements whether they are stuck in a commute, making tracks to the beach or up to no good.

    Independence Grove Forest Preserve near Libertyville was closed Wednesday and will remain closed until further notice following a bomb threat received Tuesday night. Lake County Forest Preserve District Ranger Police said the park will not reopen until a complete investigation of the threat is completed.

    Independence Grove Forest Preserve still closed due to bomb scare

    Independence Grove Forest Preserve in Libertyville will remain closed until further notice following a bomb threat that shut down activities Tuesday night, officials said. One of the Lake County Forest Preserve District’s largest and most popular facilities remained closed Wednesday as authorities led by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, with assistance from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco,...

    In this magazine cover image released by Wenner Media, Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev appears on the cover of the Aug. 1, 2013 issue of “Rolling Stone.”

    Bomber as rock star? Rolling Stone cover outrage

    The close-up of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev on the cover of Rolling Stone to hit shelves Friday looks more like a young Bob Dylan or Jim Morrison than the 19-year-old who pleaded not guilty a little more than a week ago in the Boston Marathon bombing, his arm in a cast and his face swollen in court. Has the magazine, with its roundly condemned cover, offered the world its first rock star of an alleged...

    An Indian cook distributes free school lunches to children at a government run school in Patna, India, Wednesday. On Tuesday, at least 22 children died and more than two dozen others were sick after eating a free school lunch that was tainted with insecticide.

    22 children die after eating school lunch in India

    The children started falling violently ill soon after they ate the free school lunch of rice, lentils, soybeans and potatoes.The food, part of a program that gives poor Indian students at least one hot meal a day, was tainted with insecticide, and soon 22 of the students were dead and dozens were hospitalized, officials said Wednesday.

    Pop star Elton John, right, and his longtime partner David Furnish were the most prominent of hundreds of same-sex couples planning to form civil partnerships in England and Wales on Wednesday, the first day that such ceremonies become possible.

    Gay marriage: Britain, France in surprise contrast

    Britain has legalized gay marriage after Queen Elizabeth II gave her royal stamp of approval. House of Commons Speaker John Bercow told lawmakers that the royal assent had been given Wednesday — the day after the bill to legalize same-sex marriage in England and Wales cleared Parliament.

    Cuba said the equipment found buried under sacks of sugar on a North Korean ship seized as it tried to cross the Panama Canal was obsolete weaponry from the mid-20th century that it had sent to be repaired.

    N. Korea arms seizure could hurt U.S.-Cuba detente

    Cuba’s admission that it was secretly sending aging weapons systems to North Korea has turned the global spotlight on a little-known link in a secretive network of rusting freighters and charter jets that moves weapons to and from North Korea despite U.N. sanctions.


    Big plans for Round Lake-area sanitary district site

    Lake County public works officials plan to spend $7.5 million to improve the outdated Round Lake Sanitary District site. Improvements include demolition of old filtration beds and construction of a new pump station. As part of the project, Round Lake Beach officials plan to install a new recycling drop-off center there.


    Elk Grove Village’s bond rating drops

    Moody’s Investment Services has downgraded Elk Grove Village’s bond rating from the highest AAA rating, which the village has enjoyed for three years, to the second-highest AA1. The downgrading of bond ratings could result in increases in local property taxes and affect interest rates when the village needs to borrow funds.

    A banner seeking information about the hit-and-run crash that killed Gabriella Drozdz can be seen at Route 22 and Buesching Road in Lake Zurich. The crash occurred July 22, 2011, as Drozdz walked along Church Street to Alpine Fest at Lion Fred Blau Park.

    Lake Zurich police: We still want driver who killed teenager

    Lake Zurich police again are seeking the public’s help in locating the driver in a hit-and-run crash that killed a teenage girl while she walked to Alpine Fest two years ago. Police Cmdr. David Bradstreet said two large banners will go up off north- and southbound Church Street calling attention to the crash that claimed the life of Gabriella Drozdz, 18, and injured two other teenage girls about...

    Mike Lehman, director of operations and head golf professional at Bowes Creek Country Club in Elgin, instructs Trey Morris and Damarion Benton, both of Elgin, when they received their clubs from The Sports Shed for the PGA Medalist Golf Camp.

    Elgin, Boys and Girls Club partner for golf program

    The city of Elgin is teaming up with the Boys and Girls Club of Elgin and the nonprofit Sports Shed, to offer a summer mentoring program for teens. Over a period of five weeks, PGA pros and apprentices will work with 15 kids, coaching them on the game of golf and pairing each session with a life lesson. Partnerships like these are helping Elgin to not only offer more resources to the community,...

    South Barrington is prepared to approve a $2.08 million construction contract Thursday for the expansion of village hall. The work would begin in August and finish in March 2014.

    South Barrington ready for village hall expansion

    South Barrington trustees will meet Thursday night to discuss and vote on a proposed construction contract for the long-planned expansion of village hall. Village Administrator Mark Masciola said the proposed $2.08 million contract with Leopardo Companies Inc. of Hoffman Estates is consistent with long-held cost estimates for the project.


    Tri-Cities police reports
    Chauncey Womack, 42, of Aurora, was charged with criminal trespassing at 2:50 p.m. Tuesday at St. Paul Lutheran Church and School, 85 S. Constitution Drive, Aurora, according to a sheriff’s report.

    Los Burritos Mexicanos in Lombard was at the center of an E. coli investigation after an outbreak last month. The restaurant on East St. Charles Road has since reopened.

    Lombard man sues restaurant after E. coli outbreak

    Another lawsuit has been filed against a Lombard restaurant that was at the center of an E. coli investigation after an outbreak in June. Quinten Hayley, 20, of Lombard, lodged the complaint in DuPage County court Tuesday against Los Burritos Mexicanos, 1015 E. St. Charles Road.


    Rolling Meadows man charged with molesting 5-year-old

    Police charged a 45-year-old Rolling Meadows man with predatory criminal sexual assault after a five-year-old girl claimed he molested her and threatened to kill her if she told. Cook County Judge Jill Cerone Marisie set bail at $250,000 Wednesday for Javier Martinez-Lopez who could face from six to 30 years in prison if convicted.


    Investigation continues into cause of Inverness mansion fire

    The State Fire Marshal’s Office and Palatine Rural Fire Protection District continue to investigate what caused the three-alarm fire Tuesday afternoon at an Inverness mansion.

    Kevin Curtis

    Waukegan transient faces murder charge

    A 26-year-old man has been charged with first-degree murder in the stabbing death of a family friend at a Waukegan hotel, police said. Kevin C. Curtis, 26, a transient living in Waukegan and Kenosha, is due to appear in bond court this afternoon for killing Jacob Blum, 19, Waukegan Police Sgt. Dave DeBaufer said Wednesday.


    Mt. Prospect OKs funds for backyard drainage program

    The Mount Prospect village board agreed Tuesday to spend $85,000 this year for its Backyard Drainage Program aimed at reducing flooding in the rear yards of private homes. The village has received requests from owners of more than 200 residential properties interested in taking advantage for the program.


    North Barrington mulls assault weapons ban tonight

    North Barrington’s village board has called an emergency special meeting for 7:30 p.m. today to consider an ordinance banning assault weapons in the village.

    In this Thursday, June 21, 2012 file photo, former Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels speaks after being named as the next president of Purdue University by the school’s trustees in West Lafayette, Ind. Emails obtained by The Associated Press show Daniels went out of his way during his second term as governor to destroy what he considered liberal breeding grounds at Indiana’s public universities.

    Purdue President Daniels denies trying to quash academic freedom

    Purdue University President Mitch Daniels fended off calls for his ouster Wednesday and denied trying to quash academic freedom while serving as Indiana’s governor, a day after an Associated Press report cited emails in which he opposed use of a book by historian and antiwar activist Howard Zinn. “This terrible anti-American academic has finally passed away,” Daniels wrote, referring to Zinn, in...


    4 DuPage businesses cited for selling tobacco to minors

    Four businesses in unincorporated DuPage County were cited for selling cigarettes to minors this fiscal year, sheriff's officials said Wednesday.


    Elmhurst man pleads guilty to Federal Reserve theft

    An Elmhurst resident faces up to a year in prison and six-figure fine after pleading guilty to stealing confidential files from the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago Wednesday.


    District 62 town hall meeting

    House District 62 state Rep. Sam Yingling hosts a town-hall meeting Thursday, July 18, in Round Lake Beach to discuss issues facing the state.


    Come enjoy Gospelfest

    The Lake County Forest Preserve District will host a Gospelfest musical celebration on Sunday, July 21.


    Construction coming to Route 22

    A section of eastbound Route 22 in Lincolnshire will be down to one lane starting Thursday, officials announced.


    Woodlands Academy open house

    Woodlands Academy of the Sacred Heart hosts a community open house about its campus expansion plans from 7 to 8 p.m. Thursday, July 18. The open house will be at the Academy, 760 E. Westleigh Road, Lake Forest.

    Pat Hughes and Daniel Gerardi of Arlington Heights, in the press box at Wrigley Field.

    Hersey sophomore ready to take over the airwaves

    How many high school sophomores know what they want to do in life? Daniel Gerardi does, and his teachers and coaches at Hersey High School are giving him every oppportunity to ply his sports broadcasting trade, now.

    Barrington Hills residents gather outside East Dundee village hall after the board, much to their chagrin, approved a redevelopment agreement and industrial subdivision plan for Insurance Auto Auctions. At left, a police officer stands with three representatives from Insurance Auto Auctions.

    E. Dundee police chief explains police escort

    Earlier this week, the East Dundee village board signed off on a redevelopment agreement and industrial subdivision plan that lets Insurance Auto Auctions open a new location in the village. While trustees say the plan will bring jobs and revenue to the village, people in neighboring Barrington Hills fear the company will pollute their groundwater from fluids that leak from the vehicles.

    Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan at a news conference Wednesday declined to discuss what conversations, if any, she had with her politically powerful father before deciding not to run for governor.

    Madigan won’t discuss dad’s role in 2014 decision

    Attorney General Lisa Madigan is declining to discuss what conversations — if any — she had with her politically powerful father before deciding not to run for Illinois governor.


    Utility bill class in Hanover Pk.

    The Citizens Utility Board will be in Hanover Park July 29 to explain the latest utility issues and scams impacting consumers, and analyze electric, natural gas and phone bills at a free clinic.


    Community Church of Rolling Meadows to host Cornfest, Craft Fair Aug. 3

    The Community Church of Rolling Meadows will host its 57th annual Cornfest and Craft Fair from 11 a.m.-7 p.m. (craft fair from 10 a.m.-6 p.m.) on Saturday, Aug. 3. Admission to grounds is free.

    Nathan C. Lake

    Hampshire man charged in sexual abuse of St. Charles teen

    A 22-year-old Hampshire man was arrested Tuesday on charges that he sexually abused a 16-year-old from St. Charles in January. Nathan C. Lake is charged with aggravated criminal sexual abuse, indecent solicitation, attempted child abuduction and traveling to meet a minor and was being held on $100,000 bail, according to police and court records.

    Clark Weaver

    Probation in $50,000 St. Charles marijuana bust

    A 21-year-old St. Charles man was sentenced to 30 months probation after pleading guilty to possession of more than four pounds of marijuana. Clark Weaver was arrested in October 2012 after a search warrant turned up an estimated $50,000 in marijuana and candies laced with drugs, records show.

    Todd Thompson

    Police: Gurnee man tried to meet teen for sex

    A 35-year-old Gurnee man was charged with four counts of indecent solicitation of a child after arranging to have sex with what he thought was a teenage girl he met on Craigslist, authorities said Wednesday. Todd Thompson, 35, of the 16000 Block of Washington Street, posted an advertisement on the website for a companion, but began communications June 9 with what he thought was a 14-year-old...


    Other jurors distance themselves from Juror B37
    Four of the six jurors from the murder trial of neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman have distanced themselves from statements another juror made in a televised interview. “The opinions of Juror B37, expressed on the Anderson Cooper show were her own, and not in any way representative of the jurors listed below,” said the statement, signed by Jurors B51, B76, E6 and E40.

    Food pantry volunteers sort and date and check all donated nonperishable food before it is stored. Every Tuesday morning, fresh produce and bakery items from local stores are quality checked and distributed with bagged groceries.

    LCC Food Pantry fights hunger, helps neighbors in need

    Serving the communities of Arlington Heights, Des Plaines, Elk Grove Village, Mount Prospect and Rolling Meadows for 37 years, the Lutheran Church of the Cross (LCC) Food Pantry’s mission is to: Improve the health and quality of life of impoverished families and the homeless by providing a variety of nutritious groceries year-round until there is no longer a need for its services.

    In this Tuesday, March 19, 2013 file photo, Pope Francis is driven through the crowd in his popemobile in St. Peter’s Square. The Vatican said Wednesday, July 17, 2013 that Pope Francis is forgoing the bulletproof popemobile for his upcoming trip to Brazil and that he will use the same open-topped car he uses for zooming around St. Peter’s Square.

    Pope nixes popemobile for Rio trip

    Pope Francis is forgoing the bulletproof popemobile for his upcoming trip to Brazil for the Catholic Church’s youth festival, further evidence that he has no qualms about tweaking the Vatican’s security operations for the sake of getting closer to the faithful. “It’s in continuity with what he does here,” Rev. Federico Lombardi said. “He feels good about being in close communication with the...

    U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry speaks during a joint news conference with Jordan’s Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh on Wednesday, July 17, 2013 at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the Jordanian capital, Amman. Kerry won Arab League backing Wednesday for his effort to restart Israeli-Palestinian peace talks, raising hopes for a quick resumption in the stalled negotiations.

    Kerry wins Arab backing on Mideast peace effort

    U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on Wednesday won Arab League backing for his effort to restart Israeli-Palestinian peace talks. The Arab delegates said they supported Kerry’s initiative. “The Arab delegates believe Kerry’s ideas proposed to the committee today constitute a good ground and suitable environment for restarting the negotiations, especially the new and important political, economic...

    A man places a candle after he prayed for former South African President Nelson Mandela inside the St. George’s Cathedral in Cape Town, South Africa, Wednesday, July 17, 2013.

    Mandela makes ‘dramatic’ progress, says daughter

    Nelson Mandela has made “dramatic progress,” and may be going home “anytime soon,” said his daughter Zindzi on the eve of his 95th birthday. “I visited him yesterday and he was watching television with headphones,” said Zindzi Mandela in an interview with Britain’s Sky TV. “He gave us a huge smile and raised his hand ... He responds with his eyes and his hands.”

    The Orchard Evangelical Free Church in Arlington Heights has yet to submit formal plans to the village for their proposal to tear down neighboring homes it owns to expand parking. The proposal has stirred outspoken opposition from the church's neighbors.

    Neighborhood opposition quiets as church expansion plans fail to materialize

    After several months of bringing their concerns to the Arlington Heights village board about a possible church parking lot expansion in their neighborhood, members of the Hickory Meadows Community Group say they are backing off the issue, for now, because the church has yet to submit a formal plan.

    The band 7th Heaven will be on the main stage Sunday night.

    Des Plaines Summer Fling is July 19-21

    The Des Plaines Summer Fling is back for 2013, with carnival rides, live music, food booths and more along Ellinwood Street between River Road and Lee Street July 19-21.

    This July 20, 2012 file photo shows police outside of the Century 16 movie theater where suspect James Holmes killed 12 people and wounded 70 during the screening of a Batman movie. Eight months later, Colorado became the only state outside the Democratic Party’s coastal bases to pass sweeping gun control laws.

    Year after Colo. theater attack, gun debate rages

    Colorado’s latest batch of gun control laws — coming after a gunman’s deadly rampage at a suburban Denver movie theater a year ago — has sparked a struggle over guns that shows little signs of fading. Gun rights advocates are trying to recall two state senators who backed the package, and dozens of GOP county sheriffs are suing to overturn it. “This is going to remain a political hot potato for...

    Kiyomi Negi of the Tsukasa Taiko Japanese Drummers performs at the Mitsuwa Marketplace summer festival in Arlington Heights.

    Dancing, drumming highlight traditional Japanese summer fest

    The traditional Japanese summer festival, or "Bon dancing festival," is coming back to Mitsuwa Marketplace in Arlington Hts. on Aug. 3. The fest features tradition Japanese entertainment, food and drink.

    Ariel Castro stands before a judge during his arraignment on an expanded 977-count indictment Wednesday, July 17, 2013, in Cleveland. Castro is charged with kidnapping and raping three women over a decade in his Cleveland home. Castro pleaded not guilty to 512 counts of kidnapping and 446 counts of rape.

    Ohio kidnapping, rape suspect pleads not guilty

    The Cleveland man accused of holding three women captive in his home for over a decade pleaded not guilty Wednesday on an expanded indictment charging him with 512 counts of kidnapping and 446 counts of rape, among other crimes. Ariel Castro, 53, has been jailed since his arrest on May 6 shortly after the women escaped to freedom. His legal team has hinted Castro would plead guilty if the death...


    Asking ‘why?’ can lead to enlightenment

    Have you ever asked yourself the question, “Why? It’s a small but powerful question.One of the invaluable principles of life is asking. We need to ask God for wisdom and we need to ask ourselves a few things as well. Our growth and potential is stimulated by asking ourselves the question, “Why?”says columnist Annettee Budzban.

    In this March 12, 2013, file photo, Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., gestures during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington. Democrats pursuing a far-reaching immigration bill are counting on help from Republican Rep. Paul Ryan.

    Democrats pin immigration hopes on GOP’s Ryan

    Paul Ryan, the House Budget Committee chairman who is frequently mentioned in the GOP lineup of possible 2016 presidential candidates, stands apart from many fellow House Republicans in favoring a way out of the shadows for the 11 million immigrants living in the U.S. in violation of the law. “Paul Ryan says we cannot have a permanent underclass of Americans, that there needs to be a pathway to...

    Police vehicles sit parked outside a hotel in Nuevo Laredo, Mexico, Tuesday, July 16, 2013. Local hotels are housing many of the federal police, state police and members of the armed forces who patrol the northern border city, which is home to the Zetas organized crime group.

    Cartel’s border city home tense following arrest

    The capture of the homegrown boss of Mexico’s most feared drug cartel wasn’t discussed publicly by residents of this northern border city and not a word appeared in the local newspapers a day after the arrest of the Zetas’ Miguel Angel Trevino Morales. After all, this is a town where bodies have swung from a local overpass — nine on one night last year.


    Closures set for Naperville’s Main Street

    Motorists in downtown Naperville should expect delays starting next week when crews close Main Street between Van Buren and Benton avenues to install duct banks needed to increase reliability of electrical service and to prepare for additional development.

    Paul Natkin

    Rock photographer Paul Natkin speaks in Elmhurst

    Photographer Paul Natkin discusses the stories behind some of his most compelling photos of legendary rock stars at 7 p.m. Thursday at the Elmhurst Historical Museum's Education Center.


    New gym for Prairie School in Naperville

    Prairie Elementary School will be getting a new gym under a $1.75 million contract approved Monday by the Naperville Unit District 203 school board.


    Celebrity golf outing Monday in Long Grove

    The Special Kids Network will host its 14th annual Celebrity Golf Tournament Monday, July 22, at Twin Orchard Country Club in Long Grove. Proceeds from this year’s event will benefit Keshet, a charity for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. More than a dozen celebrities are scheduled to attend.

    Virgil Droumev of Arlington Heights is not in favor of an assault weapons ban in his hometown. “I’m not in favor of banning assault weapons because I believe people should have the right to carry weapons to protect themselves. I was in the military and as we well know the bad guys always manage to find the weapons they need. A weapon is just a tool. Why ban it? It’s not going to accomplish anything.”

    As deadline looms, few suburbs ban assault weapons

    With just a few days to go before they’ll no longer have the option, suburban leaders have largely declined to enact assault weapons bans, leaving future decisions on the topic in the hands of county or state leaders. “We think that’s something that should be done on a statewide — and at the very least countywide — level,” Roselle Mayor Gayle Smolinski said. “I think it’s almost unenforceable to...

    Jeff Swanson

    Barrington-Countryside's new administrator explains last job's end

    The Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District's newly hired administrator, Jeff Swanson, resigned from his previous position as chief of the New Lenox Fire Protection District in September 2009 after six weeks on administrative leave for undisclosed reasons. Swanson, 43, explained Tuesday that his departure was the result of a difference in vision with the New Lenox fire district board that...


    Senate deal could affect recess appointment case

    The Senate’s deal to avert a showdown over its internal rules and confirm several long-stalled Obama administration nominees could upend a major case at the Supreme Court, one that would test the president’s power to use recess appointments to fill high-level posts.

    Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky speaks to reporters as lawmakers moved toward resolving their feud over filibusters of White House appointees on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, July 16, 2013.

    Senate nomination pact averts meltdown — for now

    A bipartisan Senate pact has smoothed the confirmation path for a batch of President Barack Obama’s nominations and removed, for now, a Democratic threat to impose procedural changes weakening minority Republicans’ clout. Yet there are no guarantees that the conflict won’t flare anew the next time a White House appointment stirs controversy.

    Cecil Smith

    Sanford, Florida's chief draws on lessons from Elgin

    When Cecil Smith took over as police chief in Sanford, Fla., he relied on what he'd learned during his 25 years in Elgin to deal with the potentially explosive aftermath of the death of teenager Trayvon Martin. It was almost as simple as reaching out to the community. His predecessor “was a guy they'd occasionally see when something major happens,” said Smith, Elgin's deputy chief...

    Marzio Vigliotti exhales as he waits for a co-worker while they assemble a ride at the Kane County Fairgrounds Tuesday in St. Charles. He is from South Africa and will be working the summer months for Fantasy Amusements. He said the rate of exchange makes his pay worth the work in the heat.

    Forecast calls for heat wave to continue

    People should drink plenty of water and find their local cooling center because hazy and hot weather is forecast through the end of the week. Officials from the National Weather Service is predicting highs of 94 degrees today.


    2-year-old missing in Wisconsin

    BALSAM LAKE, Wis. — A search is resuming for a missing toddler in Polk County. Justin Theis tells WCCO radio his 2-year-old son, Isaiah, wandered away from the family’s rural home near Balsam Lake about 6 p.m. Tuesday.


    Elderly grocery store owner refuses robber

    MARSHFIELD, Wis. — A masked robber thought the 96-year-old owner of a neighborhood grocery store in Marshfield would be an easy target for his crime. But, he was so wrong. Margaretta Wolf has owned the store bearing her family name for 54 years. And she wasn’t about to turn over her cash to the armed intruder Monday.


    3rd trial in Indiana family slaying case delayed week

    ROCKPORT, Ind. — New DNA evidence is causing a one-week delay in a southern Indiana man’s third trial on charges that he killed his wife and two young children nearly 13 years ago.


    Indiana man cleared in shooting of home intruder

    LAPORTE, Ind. — A northern Indiana man who police say fatally shot a home intruder won’t face any criminal charges.The LaPorte County prosecutor has ruled that the homeowner acted in self-defense when he shot 22-year-old Jason Rabe of Three Oaks, Mich.


    Illinois drive-in hopes to make digital switch

    NEWTON, Ill. — The owners of a southeastern Illinois drive-in theater say they have to make an expensive conversion from film to digital projection. And they’re trying to raise the money to do it.Larry and Melody McGrath own the Fairview Drive-In in Newton. The town is 90 miles south of Champaign.


    Carbondale lifts ban on Halloween bar business

    CARBONDALE — For the first time in more than a decade, bars in downtown Carbondale will be allowed to open on Halloween. City Council members voted 4-2 on Tuesday to let bars in an area known as “The Strip” operate this year. City officials say they’ll allow the bars to open for business as part of a one-year experiment.


    Fire destroys much of Indiana veterans group post

    BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — Fire destroyed much of a bingo hall and tavern owned by a veterans group in southern Indiana.Flames shot through the roof of AMVETS Post 2000’s bar near Bloomington on Tuesday and that building’s roof collapsed.


    Niabi Zoo to loan out elephants, close exhibit

    COAL VALLEY, Ill. — The only elephants at an Illinois zoo will have to find a new home.The Rock Island County Forest Preserve Commission voted 21-0 on Tuesday to loan the pair of pachyderms at the Niabi Zoo to another facility or a sanctuary. Experts say Sophie and Babe, who are 37 and 40, need a bigger barn and warmer temperatures — particularly as they get older.


    Military units from 26 states train at Fort McCoy

    FORT MCCOY, Wis. — More than 2,000 soldiers, airmen and civilian first responders have descended on Fort McCoy to train for a full-scale emergency. The National Guard Bureau’s annual Patriot training exercise assesses the guard members’ ability to respond to multiple emergencies and assist local and state first responders.


    Wisconsin defense to decide whether Spooner testifies

    MILWAUKEE — It’s unclear whether the Milwaukee man accused of gunning down the teenage neighbor whom he accused of burglary will testify on his own behalf.


    Indiana town struggles with dry wells

    TEMPLETON, Ind. — Several homes in a small northwestern Indiana town have had their water wells go dry, perhaps because of irrigation at a nearby farm.Those living in about a dozen homes in the Benton County town of Templeton have been relying on bottled water and water brought in by a tanker truck since Saturday.


    Judge to ponder stay on Wisconsin abortion law

    MADISON, Wis. — A federal judge is set to consider arguments for lifting a temporary stay on a crucial section of a new Wisconsin abortion law.


    Person of interest identified in Illinois boy’s hit-and-run death

    BELLEVILLE, Ill. — Investigators in southwestern Illinois’ St. Clair County are asking for the public’s help in locating a teenager they consider a person of interest in the hit-and-run death of a 9-year-old boy who was riding his bicycle.


    Man beats Chicago clerk for not carrying XXXL tank tops

    Authorities say a store clerk in Chicago was beaten with a baseball bat after telling an angry patron that the retailer didn’t carry extended-size tank tops.Chicago Police say a man went into a store on the city’s far west side on Tuesday morning and asked if it stocked the sleeveless shirts in size 3XL.

    The Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning is working with Antioch on a Lifestyle Corridor plan to link key destinations and position the village as the crossroads of a regional greenway system.

    Antioch seeks input on Lifestyle Corridor plan

    Antioch is presenting at its summer festival its Lifestyle Corridor plan, a multi-use path system that would incorporate existing trails, sidewalks, on-street paths and new elements through town and beyond. “We hope to get people walking by saying, 'What's going on here?' and getting their input,” said Jason Navota, a principal planner.

    Country musician Ronnie Dunn will perform at the eighth annual Rockin’ for the Troops at Wheaton’s Cantigny Park on July 20.

    Country musician to headline benefit concert at Wheaton’s Cantigny

    Country musician Ronnie Dunn is performing at the eighth annual fundraising concert Rockin' For the Troops at Cantigny Park in Wheaton on July 20. The annual concert raises funds for servicemen and women returning from war areas.

    An aerial view shows a house on Carnoustie Lane in Inverness burning Tuesday afternoon. Nobody was hurt in the fire, though two firefighters were treated for heat exhaustion.

    Dawn Patrol: Big fires in Inverness, Schaumburg

    Fires Tuesday caused more than $1 million damage to a home in Inverness and $600,000 damage to a townhome complex in Schaumburg; bomb threat empties forest preserve near Libertyville; Schaumburg told to drop undercover vice unit; Sugar Grove decides not to sell confiscated guns.

    Joanne Brandt

    Joanne Brandt honored for service to Wauconda

    With her 20-year career as Wauconda's deputy village clerk having drawn to a close, Joanne Brandt was honored with a proclamation and a pair of standing ovations during Tuesday night's village board meeting.


    Naperville grants $7.5 million in incentives for Freedom Plaza

    The developers of Freedom Plaza in north Naperville plan to be moving dirt by early August as they build a 1,000-seat banquet facility and hotel — an amenity the city has sought for years.The city council on Tuesday night unanimously approved $7.5 million in incentives for Lakhany Group Investments LLC, mainly in the form of hotel tax and retail sales tax rebates to be given over the next 20...



    Cougars fall 6-2 to Loons

    In the Kane County debut for Juan Carlos Paniagua, it was another familiar result for the Cougars as the Great Lakes Loons jumped in front early and never looked back in a 6-2 series-opening victory Wednesday night at Fifth Third Bank Ballpark.


    Occasionally, fishing is simply for the birds

    Sure, fishing is mainly about the fish. But bird encounters tend to make for a most memorable fish story.

    Naperville native Candace Parker, who plays for the WNBA’s Los Angeles Sparks, was named Best WNBA player at Wednesday night’s ESPY Awards in Los Angeles.

    Naperville’s Candace Parker among ESPY winners

    Naperville Central graduate Candace Parker was among the ESPY Award winners Wednesday night in Los Angeles. LeBron James and the Miami Heat padded his trophy collection, receiving three at the ESPY Awards, including male athlete of the year, and in the championship performance and NBA player categories, completing a sweep of the three awards he won last year. He shared in the best team award.

    St. Charles East’s Erik Anderson dives back safely to first base before St. Charles North’s Joe Kuczek can tag him out in the fourth inning of the St. Charles East summer tournament semifinals on Wednesday, July 17.

    St. Charles East, Geneva reach title game

    The semifinals of the St. Charles East regional turned into bragging rights for both the Upstate Eight Conference River Division and the Tri-Cities Wednesday in St. Charles.

    Stevenson’s Matt Morrissey, right, makes a catch in front of Maine South’s Danny Allegretti in the 2011 season. Morrissey recently committed to play football at Michigan State.

    Morrissey commits to Michigan State

    Stevenson senior Matt Morrissey is extending a proud family tradition after committing to play football at Michigan State. Exactly what position he'll play and what number he'll wear remains to be seen, but the youngest child of former Bears linebacker Jim Morrissey is pleased to have his decision made.


    Kruppe connects, and Benet edges Glenbard East

    The innings seemed to wilt away in the blazing heat as Benet’s baseball team continued to trail Glenbard East. Then Jon Kruppe stepped to the plate like a breath of fresh air in the top of the fifth. Kruppe’s 2-run go-ahead single sparked Benet to a 6-5 win over the Rams in the IHSBCA Glenbard South regional semifinals Wednesday in Glen Ellyn.


    All this Wrigley whining an unnecessary reminder

    If Bridgeport residents can live near Comiskey Park without complaining, why can't Wrigleyville residents live near Wrigley Field without complaining? Because South Siders are tougher than North Siders, that's why. I mean, they are, aren't they?


    Heat having an effect on angling

    The extreme heat and how it's affecting the fishing on lakes and waterways.

    Dan Vogelbach throws the ball back to home plate during drills at the Kane County Cougars practice on Media Day in Geneva on Tuesday, April 2. The Cougars, who are affiliated with the Chicago Cubs, wore their Cubs jerseys during practice.

    Catching up with Cubs’ prospect Dan Vogelbach

    Kane County Cougars slugger and one of the Cub's top offensive prospects, Dan Vogelbach, sat down for a Q&A after a game.

    St. Louis Cardinals starter Adam Wainwright delivers a pitch during the first inning of a baseball game against the Chicago Cubs in Chicago, Sunday, July 14, 2013. (AP Photo/Paul Beaty)

    Resiliency, rookies keeping Cardinals on top

    Yadier Molina is an MVP candidate, Adam Wainwright is back in ace form and Carlos Beltran is playing like a kid. And that’s only half the six-player All-Star contingent that led the St. Louis Cardinals to the best record in the majors at the break.

    Tiger Woods of the United States plays a shot on the 15th hole during a practice round for the British Open Golf Championship at Muirfield, Scotland, Wednesday July 17, 2013. (AP Photo/Peter Morrison)

    Prepping for British Open unlike any other major

    It’s not unusual for players to take off from their regular tours a week before a major to prepare. What’s different about the British Open — isn’t everything? — is that preparations aren’t limited to the course they will be playing. “You can prepare for the U.S. Open on the range,” Geoff Ogilvy said Wednesday. “But you can only prepare for The Open on the course. And it doesn’t necessarily have to be the course you’re playing."


    Sky scouting report

    Sky scout for Thursday...please post to web

    FILE - In this June 26, 2013, file photo, Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz claps his hands before stepping into the batter's box during an interleague baseball game against the Colorado Rockies at Fenway Park in Boston. Baseball's experiment to boost scoring and interest in the then-lagging American League turned 40 this year, and never has the designated hitter been more of a wedge between the two leagues than in 2013, with interleague play all season long and the potential for a pennant-race-altering effect. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola, File)

    DH debate at 40: No sign of slowing down

    The designated hitter turned 40 this year. Fittingly, it’s having sort of a mid-life crisis.Never before has the imbalance between the American and National Leagues regarding Rule 6.10 been more of a potential problem. “A little controversy between the leagues is really not all bad,” Commissioner Bud Selig said before the All-Star game in New York on Tuesday.

    ADDS NAME AND NATIONALITY - Stage winner and overall leader Chris Froome of Britain celebrates on the podium of the seventeenth stage of the Tour de France cycling race an individual time trial over 32 kilometers (20 miles) with start in Embrun and finish in Chorges, France, Wednesday July 17, 2013. (AP Photo/Laurent Rebours)

    Froome focusing on grueling Alps as Paris nears

    Winning more stages in this Tour de France doesn’t interest Chris Froome, who is focused on protecting his overall lead during the next three days of grueling climbing in the Alps. Froome is four days from becoming the second consecutive British rider to win cycling’s premier race, following Sky teammate Bradley Wiggins’ success last year.

    Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel talks with reporters Wednesday during the Southeastern Conference football Media Days in Hoover, Ala.

    Johnny Football draws a crowd at SEC Media Days

    Johnny Manziel strode into Southeastern Conference Media Days and was swarmed by hundreds of reporters and dozens of television cameras. He shook some hands and the cameras flashed as he settled into his seat, the star of the SEC’s latest must-see TV show. If the Texas A&M quarterback was troubled by all the attention, he didn’t show it.


    Big Ten and Lions team for new Detroit bowl game

    The Big Ten and the Detroit Lions have announced a six-year agreement to play a bowl game at Ford Field, and a person familiar with the situation says the Atlantic Coast Conference will provide the opponent. The new bowl will start in 2014 and it has not been named or sponsored.

    R&A Chief Executive Peter Dawson conceded Wednesday that all-male clubs are a bedeviling issue but insisted the British Open venues won’t be pressured into opening their doors to women.

    R&A will look at gender issue after British Open

    Part defiant and part pragmatist, the head of the Royal & Ancient conceded Wednesday that all-male clubs are a bedeviling issue but insisted the British Open venues won’t be pressured into opening their doors to women.


    Mike North video: Is Orioles slugger Chris Davis clean?
    The Chicago Cubs President of Baseball Operations, Theo Epstein, plans on skipping the All Star game. Mike North thinks it's a better move to attend the game because the event is like a convention where major trades could materialize more quickly than just over the phone.


    Blackhawks’ 1961 Stanley Cup banner sells for $38,000

    A 52-year-old original Blackhawks Stanley Cup championship banner has sold at an auction for $37,500.The Southtown Star reports the 12-foot-long banner fetched more than expected during Tuesday night’s five-minute-long auction at Leslie Hindman Auctioneers of Chicago.The banner from 1961 once hung from the rafters at the old Chicago Stadium, before the owner of a suburban Chicago sports bar bought it an auction in 1994 for $15,000. It’s been in hanging in the bar ever since. The Blackhawks won the Stanley Cup in 1961, winning the series over the Detroit Red Wings 4-2. The team was led by Bobby Hull and Stan Mikita. Today a replica of the banner hangs in the United Center.The auction house says the 12-foot-long banner is in good shape, with only a few stains.



    AAR declares 7.5 cent dividend

    AAR Corp. declared a quarterly cash dividend of 7.5 cents per share to its stockholders, payable on or before Aug. 14 to stockholders of record as of the close of business on July 29.


    Harper College launching job placement initiative

    Harper College is moving forward with measures aimed at better connecting graduates with jobs in their areas of study. Members of the Palatine community college’s Job Placement Task Force on Wednesday presented its final report and recommendations following a yearlong process. “We haven’t been on the front end of a lot of students’ education experience helping them really capture why they were here in the first place,” President Ken Ender said.

    Enbridge Inc. hopes to begin construction of the Flanagan South oil pipeline in early August.

    Swift approval sought for Midwest oil pipeline

    As the Keystone XL pipeline remains mired in the national debate over environmental safety and climate change, another company, Enbridge Inc. of Calgary, Alberta, is hoping to begin construction early next month on a 600-mile-long pipeline that would carry tar sands from Flanagan, Ill., about 100 miles southwest of Chicago, to the company’s terminal in Cushing, Okla.

    KFC says it’s opening a location called “KFC eleven” early next month in Louisville, Ky., that will serve flatbread sandwiches, rice bowls, salads and only boneless pieces of its Original Recipe chicken.

    KFC drops bones, Colonel in upmarket restaurant

    KFC is tossing out the bones and the quaint image of founder Col. Harland Sanders as it gets ready to test a slightly more upmarket restaurant.The fried chicken chain says it’s opening a location called “KFC eleven” early next month that will serve flatbread sandwiches, rice bowls, salads and only boneless pieces of its Original Recipe chicken.

    Libertyville Township-based Abbott Laboratories, the largest maker of heart stents and adult nutritional beverages, said second-quarter profit climbed 16 percent as sales increased in emerging markets including Russia and China.

    Abbott Labs 2Q income falls after AbbVie spinoff

    Libertyville Township-based Abbott Laboratories Inc. said Wednesday that its net income fell in the second quarter following the spinoff of its branded drug business, but the results beat Wall Street expectations. Abbott said sales of nutrition and diagnostic products improved, making up for lower sales of generic drugs and medical devices.

    Deerfield-based Mondelez, maker of Oreo cookies, has struggled since separating from Kraft Foods last October.

    Nelson Peltz wants PepsiCo to buy Mondelez

    Activist investor Nelson Peltz says he wants soda-and-snack food giant PepsiCo to buy Deerfield-based Mondelez, the maker of Oreo cookies, and spin off its own underperforming beverage unit. Peltz said he talked about the proposal he called “Plan A” with PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi.

    U.S. stocks rose, after the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index snapped an eight-day rally yesterday, as Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said the central bank’s asset purchases are not on a preset course.

    Stocks edge up as Bernanke reassures on stimulus

    Some soothing words from Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke pushed the stock market to slender gains on Wednesday. Higher earnings for several major companies also helped. Bernanke said that the U.S. central bank had no firm timetable for cutting back on its bond purchases.

    Chairman of the Federal Reserve Ben Bernanke tries a new microphone, left, after the one on the right didn’t work as he testifies before the House Financial Services Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington Wednesday.

    Bernanke says timetable for bond purchases not preset

    Chairman Ben Bernanke said Wednesday that the Federal Reserve’s timetable for reducing its bond purchases is not on a “preset course” and the Fed could increase or decrease the amount based on how the economy performs.


    Lew says delays on rules may again bring bailouts

    U.S. Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew says delays in writing rules to put the financial overhaul law into effect have raised the prospect that taxpayers might again have to bail out big banks that fail.


    China launches crackdown on drug industry

    China announced a crackdown Wednesday on misconduct in its drug market, stepping up pressure on the problem-prone industry while it pursues a bribery investigation of GlaxoSmithKline.

    U.S. builders started work on fewer homes in June, mostly because apartment construction fell sharply. But applications for permits to build single-family houses rose to the highest level in five years, suggesting the housing recovery will continue.

    U.S. builders start work on fewer homes in June

    U.S. builders started work on fewer homes in June, mostly because apartment construction fell sharply. But applications for permits to build single-family houses rose to the highest level in five years, suggesting the housing recovery will continue.

    Mattel said Wednesday its second-quarter net income fell 24 percent, hurt by a continued slide in Barbie sales and a $14 million write-down on the toy maker’s Polly Pocket line.

    Mattel 2Q profit falls, Barbie sales slide again

    Vampy teen Monster High dolls are taking a bite out of squeaky-clean Barbie. Mattel said Wednesday its second-quarter net income fell 24 percent, hurt by a continued slide in Barbie sales and a $14 million write-down on the Polly Pocket line. Monster High dolls, which are based on teen characters that are offspring of famous monsters, have been a huge hit for Mattel since they were introduced in 2010.


    Northrop Grumman awarded logistics contract

    Northrop Grumman Corp. has been awarded a $173 million performance-based logistics contract to provide support and sustainment services for the LITENING advanced targeting system.


    Four Advocate hospitals make U.S. News annual list

    Four Advocate Health Care hospitals have been named among the finest in Chicago and Illinois according to U.S. News & World Report’s 2013-2014, Best Hospitals list.


    Wintrust sees 34 percent increase in 2Q income

    Wintrust Financial Corp. said second quarter 2013 income rose 34 percent to $34.3 million or 69 cents per share. The figures were in comparison to $32.1 million or 65 cents per share for the first quarter of 2013 and $25.6 million or 52 cents per diluted common share for the second quarter of 2012.

    House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio speaks Thursday during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington. Boehner stood on the House floor Tuesday and ridiculed Democratic comments that the law has been “wonderful” for the country saying “The law isn’t wonderful, it’s a train wreck. You know it. I know it. And the American people know it. Even the president knows it. That’s why he proposed delaying his mandate on employers.” The House has scheduled votes Wednesday to delay the health care law’s individual and employer mandates, the 38th time the GOP majority has tried to eliminate, defund or scale back the program since Republicans took control of the House in January 2011.

    House GOP seek delay in health care provisions

    House Republicans, politically emboldened by President Barack Obama’s delay of a key requirement of his health care law, are taking another run at scrapping his signature domestic policy. The House has scheduled votes Wednesday to delay the law’s individual and employer mandates, the 38th time the GOP majority has tried to eliminate, defund or scale back the program since Republicans took control of the House in January 2011.

    A customer uses a Bank of America ATM Tuesday in downtown Charlotte, N.C.

    Bank of America’s earnings soar 70 percent

    Bank of America says its second-quarter profits soared, helped largely by cost-cutting. The results beat analysts’ expectations. The bank earned $3.6 billion in the quarter after payments to preferred shareholders. That was up 70 percent from $2.1 billion a year ago. The bank benefited from lower litigation expenses, having already settled several high-profile lawsuits related to its mortgage unit earlier this year.

Life & Entertainment

    New Kids on the Block is set to perform at the Allstate Arena in Rosemont on the same bill with Boyz II Men and 98 Degrees.

    Weekend picks: OMG! NKOTB plays Allstate

    The girls will be screaming Friday when New Kids on the Block headlines The Package Tour, which also features Boyz II Men and 98 Degrees, at Allstate Arena in Rosemont. If you can't stand the heat, head inside for Chris Isaak's concert at the Arcada in St. Charles or Harry Connick Jr.'s performance at Symphony Center in Chicago. Or laugh it up when Jay Pharoah performs celebrity impressions at Zanies in the suburbs.

    A bouquet garni of fresh rosemary, flowering sage and oregano.

    Herb dilemmas solved by the bunch

    Your garden bed is overflowing with chives and the thyme in your windsill containers has gone bonkers. What can you do with your bounty of fresh herbs? Chefs and other experts offer their suggestions.

    Chocolate milk does not have the same antioxidant benefits as dark chocolate.

    Does chocolate milk have antioxidant properties?

    Karen Collins with the American Institute for Cancer Research answers readers' questions about antioxidants in cocoa and chocolate milk and why when we're 50 we can't eat like we're 20.

    Tourists walk by Italian designer Gianni Versace’s mansion on Ocean Drive in the South Beach area of Miami Beach, Fla.

    Versace mansion headed for auction block

    The South Beach, Fla., mansion once owned by Italian designer Gianni Versace and the place he was fatally shot is headed for the auction block. Fisher Auction Company is handling the sale, set for Sept. 17. The 23,000-square-foot oceanfront mansion had previously been listed for $125 million.

    Beth Hendrickson, principal of St. Ann Interparochial School, shows some of the trash bags being sold to raise money for the school in Morganfield, Ky.

    Can trash bags be a moneymaker for schools?

    When Beth Hendrickson first proposed selling garbage bags instead of candy as a school fundraiser, “people laughed at us.” They don’t laugh anymore. Hendrickson, principal of St. Ann Interparochial School in Morganfield, Ky., says the school makes $20,000 a year selling garbage bags. And it’s not just parents of the school’s 230 students who buy them. Local businesses and government offices in Morganfield — population 3,500 — buy garbage bags from the school as well. “Nobody needs candy,” Hendrickson says. “But trash bags — that’s something everybody needs.”

    Pulled pork sandwich with fries and coleslaw, served at JD's Q and Brew, Arlington Heights, is one of the best in the suburbs.

    Our staff weighs in on the burbs' best barbecue

    2013 could go down as the Summer of Barbecue. Slow-cooked spiced, smoked and sauced meats are everywhere ... in new barbecue shacks in Naperville clear up to Gurnee. Daily Herald staffers tell us where they go when they have a hankering for some great 'cue.

    Hugh Jackman returns as Logan/Wolverine in the upcoming film “The Wolverine.”

    Hugh Jackman claws his way into fans’ hearts

    Hugh Jackman is ready to sink his claws into Comic-Con again. The 44-year-old actor is returning to San Diego this week for the 44th annual Comic-Con International pop-culture convention to hype “The Wolverine,” his Japan-set “X-Men” spinoff opening July 25 that marks the actor’s sixth time playing the iconic comic book character that catapulted him to stardom in 2000.

    At 22, chef Alex Ciciora operates The Pizza Via, a mobile wood-fired pizza oven that he takes to company picnics, graduation parties and celebrations of all kinds.

    Chef du Jour: Mobile chefs brings brick-oven pizza to the masses

    Alex Ciciora was the kid you'd see shoveling neighbors' driveways and setting up lemonade stands in summer. Today the Downers Grove chef runs The Pizza Via, a catering business that uses hand-tossed dough and fresh ingredients. “I've always had a bit of an entrepreneurial spirit,” he said.

    British author J.K. Rowling confirmed in a statement released by her publicist that “The Cuckoo’s Calling,” a detective novel which won critical acclaim, was penned under her pseudonym Robert Galbraith.

    Signed copy of J.K. Rowling book could mean big money

    Not many people owned a copy of “The Cuckoo’s Calling” before word leaked out over the weekend that author Robert Galbraith was, in fact, J.K. Rowling. But among those who did, a handful managed to get a signed edition. And that could mean a lot of money. Rowling spokeswoman Nicky Stonehill told The Associated Press that Rowling, the “Harry Potter” author, signed “a few copies” of her detective novel as “Robert Galbraith.”

    MTV announced Wednesday that Justin Timberlake and Macklemore & Ryan Lewis have six MTV Video Music Award nominations each.

    Timberlake, Macklemore lead with 6 MTV VMA nods

    The man in the suit and tie and the duo who buys clothes at thrift shops are the leaders at this year’s MTV Video Music Awards. MTV announced Wednesday that Justin Timberlake and Macklemore & Ryan Lewis have six nominations each. Bruno Mars has four nominations.

    Suburban native William Beckett, formerly the frontman of The Academy Is..., will perform solo at Vans Warped Tour this weekend at the First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre in Tinley Park.

    Warped, Pitchfork give suburban music fans multiple options

    Suburban native William Beckett, formerly of the pop-punk band The Academy Is..., will perform during the annual Vans Warped Tour, one of two big music events coming to the Chicago area this weekend. Plus, we profile Parquet Courts, a New York quartet that has released one of the most buzzed-about albums of the year, “Light Up Gold”, and is preparing to deliver a set at Pitchfork.


    Greek Salad Vinaigrette
    Greek Vinaigrette

    When faced with an abundance of thyme, bake this tender Lemon Thyme Spice Cake.

    Lemon Thyme Spice Cake
    Lemon Thyme Spice Cake

    Chef Alex Ciciora’s pesto pizza.

    Alex’s Pesto
    Basil Pesto:Alex Ciciora

    The black-legged deer tick can transmit B. miyamotoi, Lyme and ehrlichiosis.

    New tick-borne infection similar to Lyme disease

    A new tick-borne illness marked by recurring high fever and described for the first time in U.S. patients just this year may help explain a controversial condition known as chronic Lyme disease. It may be easily confused with other infections transmitted by the eight-legged creatures, which have been steadily expanding their range throughout the northeastern part of the U.S. But the newly identified bacterium is associated with a Lyme-like illness marked by higher fevers that wax and wane.

    Minnesota author and gardener, Joel Karsten, picks tomatoes from his straw bale garden. Karsten is the leading proponent of a straw-bale gardening movement that has become one of this summer’s hottest gardening trends.

    Bad soil? No soil? Try planting in straw bales

    Bad soil? Not enough soil? Maybe even no soil? Skip the ground and try planting fruits and vegetables in straw bales instead, suggests Joel Karsten, author of “Straw Bale Gardens” and guru of one of this year’s gardening trends. The idea behind straw-bale gardening is simple. “It’s basically a different type of container garden,” says Karsten, of Roseville, Minn.

    Turbo (the orange snail voiced by Ryan Reynold), center, leads his race team to victory in the animated comedy "Turbo."

    Does juiced ‘Turbo’ send the wrong message?

    The message of the animated “Turbo” is that no dream is too big, you can do anything if you set your mind to it. Unfortunately, the real embedded lesson of Turbo is that, if you’re too small or weak or otherwise incapable of greatness, you have a shot to win if you’re juiced. Ahhh, the wonders of chemicals and strength enhancers. Barry Bonds and Mark McGwire would approve.

    Dr. Suzan Obagi’s patient before upper-arm-lift surgery, also known as brachioplasty.

    Going under the knife to fix flabby arms

    Many women are opting to go under the knife, and, according to an American Society of Plastic Surgeons report, the number of such surgeries is up more than 4,000 percent since 2000. The report also presented a poll that showed first lady Michelle Obama and actresses Jennifer Aniston and Jessica Biel were the most influential celebrities with great-looking arms.

    Patrick J. Adams and Gabriel Macht are back in the new season of “Suits” on USA — and now you can catch up on older episodes with your iOS device.

    Watch what you missed (almost) instantly

    Did you miss the “Suits” season premiere on Tuesday? Now you can catch up on the train ride to work. Cable subscribers who also own an iPhone or iPad can watch “Suits,” “Graceland” and other USA Network shows with the new USA NOW mobile app.


    Daily Herald File Photo The Glen Ellyn campus of the College of DuPage.

    Editorial: Signs of a new era for Glen Ellyn, College of DuPage
    A Daily Herald editorial acknowledges positive signs that the College of DuPage and the village of Glen Ellyn have developed a cooperative spirit out of their once-dysfunctional relationship.


    Blinded under a hoodie

    Columnist Richard Cohen: In the meantime, the least we can do is talk honestly about the problem. It does no one any good to merely cite the number of stops and frisks made on black males and not cite the murder statistics as well. Citing the former and not the latter is an Orwellian exercise in political correctness.


    In Israel, no silver linings

    Columnist Michael Gerson: America is not abandoning the Middle East, just creating an impression of tired ambivalence. Nearly every Israeli politician, legislator and think-tank scholar seems to be debating if America has really drawn a red line on Iranian nuclear weapons or is leaving some strategic ambiguity — which means the administration is leaving ambiguity.


    Don’t call it marriage for same-sex couples
    A Rolling Meadows letter to the editor: If you need to have this relationship made legal, then call it a civil union, but do not bestow upon that union any benefits or rights that a heterosexual marriage has. It is shameful that the entertainment industry promotes homosexuality in the majority of today’s films and television programs.


    Leading the country not Obama’s strength
    A Mount Prospect letter to the editor: Since 2009 the U.S. has been without a presiding president. Barack Obama won two presidential elections, but in both cases he has not accepted the responsibilities of the office. Everything wrong is blamed on George Bush, the Republicans, the Tea Party, bankers, doctors, businessmen, millionaires earning over $200,000, floods, tornadoes and anything else that can be faulted, except Barack Obama.


    Concealed-carry law makes us safer
    A Gurnee letter to the editor: A big “Thank you!” to our Illinois Legislature and the courts that we now have a concealed carry law in Illinois.


    Understand facts about assault weapons
    A Mundelein letter to the editor: Assault weapon is a term that was advanced by and for the anti-gun movement and the news media in the late 1970s and popularized in the early 1980s. An assault rifle (not a weapon — ever) is a military carbine that is both fully automatic and semiautomatic.


    Inexpensive idea for Lake Arlington trail
    Letter to the editor: Ed Ridchter has an idea for making the Lake Arlington trail safer - have "wheeled" traffic travel in one direction on the trail, and have pedestrian traffic go the opposite direction.


    Fears park district won’t do anything
    Letter to the editor: Philip Pick of Arlington Heights says he thinks the park district can find $800,000 in their budget somewhere to build a second trail at Lake Arlington.


    How about putting bells on all the bikes?
    Letter to the editor: Bonnie Cote of Arlington Hts. got an idea from a little girl on a pink bike riding at Lake Arlington; why not require all bikes to have bells, which riders would ring when they approach a walker?


    Thanks for ‘In God We Trust’ ad
    A Wood Dale letter to the editor: Thank you for publishing the page ad of In God We Trust on July 4. It is refreshing to be reminded of the role God played in the founding of our great and God blessed country.


    Thanks for making Little League fun
    An Algonquin letter to the editor: Thank you to Red Sox coaches in the AAYO Little League, Frank Jefferson, Matt O’Connor, Joe Wagenaar and Lauren Wagenaar. This was my son’s first year trying Little League. Being his first year he was not familiar with the game.


    ‘Help,’ ‘alternatives’ abortion key words
    A Sleepy Hollow letter to the editor: The most important words in Michael Gerson’s column on abortion are, “persuasion and the provision of alternatives.” Recriminalizing abortions will not keep them from happening. Desperate women will seek out illegal providers, just as they did before Roe v. Wade.


    When truth was solid as cast iron
    When truth was solid as cast ironWith the Supreme Court’s recent ruling on same-sex marriage, the tide of history has risen yet again, submerging my knees in brackish water. The whole country has become a swamp. Twice we elected a president whose rhetorical flourishes are derived from a teleprompter, and whose chief talent is the divination and exploitation of the nation’s increasing idiocy.On immigration, politicians from the left and center are tripping over each other, courting the Hispanic vote with their claims of “pragmatism” and “compassion.” They propose to forgive violations of U.S. law by undocumented aliens, in exchange for a fine and a waiting period. Had these violations been committed by citizens, those citizens would be in jail. But rather than being arrested, illegals are offered a “path to citizenship.” The same politicians then insult our intelligence by denying that their plan is any sort of amnesty. And guess what? Half the country perceives no slight whatsoever.Obamacare is an open-and-shut case. The only thing that remains to be seen — 100 days from now, when this bureaucratic Pandora’s box is officially opened — is how many vile, flying creatures come out before the next election.And now the Supreme Court has decreed that same-sex marriage is a sacrosanct civil right. States and churches cannot do anything about it, and if they try, they will be acting as “enemies of humanity.” A majority of five justices has pitted itself against the democratic, sovereign will of 37 states. Why vote? Especially since, next time, I’d be behind a line of illegals.Beyond writing the occasional suicide note to the Daily Herald, I will continue to go to flea markets. I enjoy handling artifacts of a bygone America. I liked how things used to be, when truth and tradition were solid as cast iron.Alexander LeeWest Chicago


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