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updated: 1/19/2013 2:05 AM

The Soapbox

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The Daily Herald Editorial Board

Good sign:

Another sign of a recovering economy might be an increase in road improvement projects. Just this week, it was announced $3.65 million in state funds would be used to fund major work on 55th Street, 75th Street, Gary Avenue and Fabyan Parkway.

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Cooperation:

The DuPage roadwork funds from Gov. Pat Quinn come only a few months after he announced a $26 million overpass to take traffic over a dangerous railroad crossing on Route 38 between West Chicago and Geneva. DuPage County Board Chairman Dan Cronin said Quinn "has been very good to DuPage County." We'd agree.

That's messed up:

We have mentioned this before in the Soapbox, but it's worth repeating: It's very discouraging to see parents letting their children drop their garbage on the ground or out of car windows. Really, what kind of example is that setting? Come on, people, we're all in this together. Show some common courtesy.

Strike talk:

Grayslake Elementary District 46 teachers walked off their jobs this week in a contract dispute with the school board over retirement incentives, base salary and extra compensation for job-related advanced degrees. The strike has canceled classes for three days, idling 4,000 students at seven schools. A Thursday bargaining session failed to produce an agreement. Another session is set for Sunday night. We urge both sides arrive prepared to compromise, reach an agreement to quickly get kids back in school.

Requiring responsibility:

A Cook County Board ordinance introduced this week would fine people who don't report it if their firearms are lost, stolen or sold. Too often, guns bought legally are stolen and get into the wrong hands -- or the buyers sell them but claim they were stolen if the guns are later used in a crime. This is a gun-control idea everyone should be able to get behind.

Go for it:

Good luck to area American Idol contestants Mariah Pulice and Andrew Jones. We wish them the same success as past Chicago and suburban singers Jennifer Hudson, Haley Reinhart and Lee DeWyze.

Character counts:

It has been a difficult week in the character counts department with news about the hoax insnarling Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o, the confession of cycling champ Lance Armstrong, and the arrests of three Schaumburg police officers on drug charges. And Dear Abby, bless her heart, is no longer here to help us make sense of our lives.

Slap shots are back:

More than seven months after the Los Angeles Kings won the Stanley Cup, the NHL is back and the Blackhawks hit the ice in L.A. tonight. While there are a lot of hurt feelings among fans, the team's plan to give away 1,000 autographed jerseys, 250 autographed pucks and 100 autographed sticks to fans this season is a good one. Welcome back, Hawks.

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