Tuesday, September 1, 2009

FutureGen, DOE Look For Cost Cuts, New Partners - cbs2chicago.com

The plant, intended to prove that a commercial-scale power plant can use coal while safely removing and storing the pollutant carbon dioxide, is planned for a site just outside the town.
FutureGen Chief Executive Officer Mike Mudd said his goal is to increase the number of companies involved from the current nine to 20.

The nine companies involved now are mainly coal miners, including St. Louis-based Peabody Energy Corp., Anglo American of the United Kingdom and Wyoming-based Rio Tinto Energy America.
In June, Columbus, Ohio-based American Electric Power Co. and Atlanta-based Southern Co., two of the country's largest electric utilities, left the Futuregen Alliance

Click on the following for the rest of the story:   FutureGen, DOE Look For Cost Cuts, New Partners - cbs2chicago.com

Senator Durbin letter to Future Gen Alliance

September 1, 2009
Mr. Paul Thompson
Chairman
The FutureGen Alliance

Dear Mr. Thompson:

I want to thank the FutureGen Alliance and your board members for meeting in Mattoon, Illinois this week.  I would also like to congratulate the Alliance and the Department of Energy on the signing of the cooperative agreement.  This board meeting and the cooperative agreement really mark the beginning of the next phase of the FutureGen project at Mattoon, Illinois.

With the Department of Energy filing the Record of Decision and restarting the contract, the Alliance can now turn its attention to the critical next phase of FutureGen.   An aggressive timeline has been set by the Department of Energy for this important project.  In the coming months, we anticipate the completion of all the necessary design and engineering components, as well as a solid cost analysis.

In addition, the Alliance and the Department will undertake an aggressive effort to increase the membership of the FutureGen Alliance.  I look forward to working with all of you as you undertake these important efforts.

I continue to believe that we can address our nation’s energy needs in a cleaner more efficient way and that FutureGen is a critical component of how we can continue to use coal without causing more harm to the environment.

On a personal note, I thank you for your service as chairman of the FutureGen Alliance Board.  Under your leadership, FutureGen at Mattoon, Illinois is closer than ever to reality.

I look forward to working with you and the Alliance to move FutureGen forward.

Sincerely,

Richard J. Durbin
U.S. Senator

Durbin: Accord will allow work to resume on FutureGen - Springfield, IL - The State Journal-Register

 

The U.S. Department of Energy and the FutureGen Alliance have reached a new agreement to resume work on the high-tech coal-gasification plant near Mattoon, said a letter released today from U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin.

Durbin: Accord will allow work to resume on FutureGen - Springfield, IL - The State Journal-Register

Caregiving robots on the way, UIC scientists say -- chicagotribune.com

You may not need nursing home insurance after all. 

Elderly patients who want to stay in their homes instead of having to consider or be put in a nursing home could get help from a robot in the not-too-distant future, according to researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago. A basic prototype of a robotic caregiver for the elderly might be a mere three years away, they say.

Before any robot can be built, the most basic problem of communication, through speech, gestures and touch, must be solved.

the researchers hope to make it affordable.
"If we put the cost at $20,000 to $30,000 -- or much less if we built on a large scale -- and if the robot is in service 5 to 10 years, that would be a good investment,"

Click on the following for more of the story:  Caregiving robots on the way, UIC scientists say -- chicagotribune.com

Daley defends shutting down streets for Oprah bash :: CHICAGO SUN-TIMES :: City Hall

It will require the city to close Michigan Avenue between Wacker and Ohio at 12:01 a.m. Sept. 7 and keep it closed until 5 a.m. Sept. 9th. CTA buses, taxicabs and other traffic will be re-routed.

“This is a great thing we’re doing. I wish we could do this every day in Chicago. How many people it will employ. How much publicity we’ll receive throughout the world. It is unbelievable. You can’t even give us that exposure globally,”

Click on the following for the rest of the details:  Daley defends shutting down streets for Oprah bash :: CHICAGO SUN-TIMES :: City Hall

'Oprah' will shut down Mag Mile | Crain's Chicago Business

By: Lorene Yue Sept. 01, 2009

(Crain’s) — Commuters who traverse Michigan Avenue will see their routes disrupted next week as Oprah Winfrey shuts down part of the Magnificent Mile to tape the season opener of her chat show.

Ms. Winfrey’s Harpo Inc. will reimburse the city for the cost of shutting down Michigan Avenue. The total cost wasn’t revealed.

Click on the following for the rest of the story:  'Oprah' will shut down Mag Mile | Crain's Chicago Business

West Dundee may fold on gaming machines :: The Courier News :: Local News

 

The board has said it will not make a final decision on whether to approve video gambling until the comprehensive list of rules and regulations is released. Until that time, business owners in West Dundee are encouraged to wait before purchasing any video gaming machines.

West Dundee may fold on gaming machines :: The Courier News :: Local News

Kane County sets date for public discussion of video gambling :: Beacon News :: Local News

Will Boone County or the City of Belvidere have any such hearings or must we just let the politicians decide? 

The Kane County Video Gaming Task Force will conduct public hearings at the Kane County Government Center on Sept. 22 and 23.

allow comments from Kane County liquor licensees, Kane County social service organizations, the general public and all other interested parties on the recent state legislation that permits video gambling devices in establishments having liquor licenses.

Click on the following for more detailsKane sets date for public discussion of video gambling :: Beacon News :: Local News

Caliber, Patriot shortages hurt Chrysler in Aug. - - BusinessRockford.com

 

the Caliber and Patriot were among the 10 most-bought vehicles through the program, which ended Aug. 24

in Belvidere, workers turned out just 2,153 vehicles total in May, June and July.

Click on the following for the rest of the story:  Caliber, Patriot shortages hurt Chrysler in Aug. - - BusinessRockford.com

Mexico nabs 6 in theft of border-fence steel

fewer people are trying to cross because of a weak U.S. economy and a crackdown on immigration.

The first two men caught cutting into the fence on Monday. An alleged accomplice was detained Tuesday with 11 pieces of fencing. The U.S. Border Patrol alerted police to three more suspects.

Click on the following for more details:  Mexico nabs 6 in theft of border-fence steel

DNA law misses 50,000 felons released in Illinois -- chicagotribune.com

 

An estimated 50,000 felons have been released from Illinois prisons or county probation without submitting DNA samples as required by law, leaving a gaping hole in the 7-year-old program designed to link known criminals to unsolved crimes.

county probation departments did not secure samples from 40,000 additional felons, mostly in Cook County, due to delays in implementing the law.

Despite the glitches, Illinois has been able to collect and store DNA samples from more than 300,000 offenders, and the DNA database has yielded around 9,000 hits of some kind, state police said.

Click on the following for the rest of the details:  DNA law misses 50,000 felons released in Illinois -- chicagotribune.com

Pay up -- or else, Kane told :: Beacon News :: Local News

Update on eviction of Kane County by a different newspaper. 

On Monday, Circuit Judge Michael Colwell refused to grant attorneys for Kane County time to appeal his earlier ruling tied to the disputed sale of the circuit clerk's office's home on Randall Road in St. Charles.In doing so, Colwell also declined to block building owner Rockward Associates from attempting eviction as the county moves to condemn the property.

Click on the following for more details:  Pay up -- or else, Kane told :: Beacon News :: Local News

State commission seeks input on how to grow volunteerism in Illinois | Daily Chronicle

 

Just over one-quarter of Illinoisans volunteer, and the state ranks 31st among rates of volunteerism; it ranked 28th three years ago

To provide feedback on the 2010-2013 state service plan, e-mail Scott McFarland at Scott.McFarland@illinois.gov or send a fax to 217-557-0515. Mailed comments can be sent to Serve Illinois, 535 W. Jefferson, 3rd Floor, Springfield, IL 62702.
To find volunteer opportunities, visit www.serve.illinois.gov

Click on the following for more of the story:  State commission seeks input on how to grow volunteerism in Illinois | Daily Chronicle

Daily Herald | Attorney: Kane County's eviction from former Ward's site will go to court

This is really something—a county not paying rent for a building it is using because it is seeking to buy the building via eminent domain. 

!

Kane County ignored the Monday deadline to decide if it wants to sign a new lease on the old Montgomery Ward property in St. Charles, and officials aren't expecting to leave any time soon

Click on the following for the details:  Daily Herald | Attorney: County's eviction from former Ward's site will go to court