>>Pension Costs Draining Schools, Agencies
(Springfield, IL) -- Education programs in Illinois face 400-million in cuts because of rising pension costs. Governor Pat Quinn's office also says budgets for services such as courts and state agencies are expected to have a reduction of about 265 million. Budget officials say it's premature to say if the state will layoff workers. They do say pension reform is needed to get the state on the right track.
>>Harmony Drops Out Of School Board Race
(Springfield, IL) -- Brian Harmony is no longer running for the Springfield School Board in Subdistrict 2. He fell three votes short of getting on the ballot after a check of petition signatures found 13 of his 60 were invalid. Harmony says signatories provided wrong information like incorrect addresses. He conceded yesterday to opponent Adam Lopez.
>>Trial Moved For Accused In Gee Family Murder Case
(Lincoln, IL) -- The trial of one of two brothers accused of slaying five family members in 2009 is being moved to Peoria County. A McLean County Circuit Judge approved the request of the attorney for Christopher Harris to change the venue out of concern the jury pool was too tainted from extensive media coverage. Their argument was so many people knew the Gee family victims and others in the grisly murder case. Forty-six-year-old Rick Gee, his 39-year-old wife Ruth, and three of their children were found bludgeoned to death in their Beason home.
>>Norfolk Southern Moving Railyard In Consolidation Plan
(Springfield, IL) -- Norfolk Southern Railway is expected to move its rail yard, and about a dozen jobs, out of Springfield as part of a consolidation plan. Spokespersons say when it would happen depends on how long it takes to move train traffic to the 10th Street tracks. The Federal Railroad Administration last month approved consolidation of freight and Amtrak traffic from the Union Pacific line on Third Street on the 10th Street corridor now used by Norfolk Southern. City officials say the public benefits from the move.