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New task force hopes to grow as it fights rising water rates

A new movement to have Water Allocated Through Equitable Rates — WATER — gained about a dozen foot soldiers Wednesday night to try to stop what the group calls “arbitrary and capricious” water rate increases from Chicago. Mokena Trustee Don Labriola, who is trying to …

Boys missing from SW Side found safe

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Two boys who were taken from Chicago’s Southwest Side by their mother were found safe in Wisconsin on Thursday along with their mother and a pet dog, according to police and the boys’ uncle, Patrick Duignan. Speaking Thursday afternoon in front of the family’s home …

Lincoln-Way area branch court moving

Beginning June 1, traffic violators in the Lincoln-Way area will have their cases heard at the former Frankfort Township Hall, 11008 W. U.S. 30 in Frankfort. The Will County Circuit Court branch, which handles minor traffic and ordinance violations, will be moved from CD&Me, 23320 …

Matteson aiming to avoid layoffs in its new budget

Matteson trustees have backed away from a plan to have a balanced budget for the 2014-15 fiscal year, apparently deciding to approve a deficit budget to avoid layoffs. At a workshop session Wednesday night, the village board and Mayor André Ashmore discussed a revised budget …

Frankfort SD 157C has new teacher contract

The Frankfort School District 157C Board has approved a two-year agreement with the Frankfort Teachers’ Association, including pay raises of about 3 percent each year and more cost sharing regarding health insurance coverage. On April 9, 78 percent of teachers voting agreed to the contract, …

Environmental groups  sue to halt Illiana tollway

A pair of environmental groups are suing to halt development on the proposed Illiana Expressway, claiming state authorities haven’t received the necessary approval for the project they claim will expose the region to “environmental devastation.” The groups claim the Illinois Department of Transportation is illegally …

Raises for Will County officials off the table

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Salaries of all elected Will County officials will remain frozen after the county board on Thursday failed to bring the issue to a vote.

Raises had been discussed in the executive committee last week, but when board Speaker Herbert Brooks Jr. made the motion Thursday …

SD 157C names director of  special services

Jennifer Bajda has been hired as director of special services in Frankfort School District 157C, effective July 1. She was chosen from more than 60 applicants and six finalists and replaces Carrie Clodi, who was placed on administrative leave with former Supt. Thomas Hurlburt in …

Raising a pint for kids: Blood drive benefits Down syndrome children

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Easter is going to be a bit different this year for 11-year-old Natalie De Nova.

The Tinley Park girl is scheduled to undergo her seventh heart surgery on Monday, and having a big family gathering Sunday is too risky, her mom, Juliette De Nova, said. …

Alsip cop fundraising with feet to benefit kids with cancer

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For Alsip Police Officer Hector Puente, helping those affected by cancer is a family matter.

Puente is participating in Monday’s Boston Marathon as a charity runner for Cops with Kids with Cancer, a Massachusetts-based nonprofit that raises money to support families with children undergoing treatment. …

Chicago Ridge hasn’t told businesses about plans to buy or move them

Chicago Ridge has plans for the former Yellow Freight terminal that involves buying and possibly relocating existing businesses to create a TIF district that would include multiuse buildings, restaurants, a cinema, hotel, conference center and an indoor water park. Though news of the 100-acre plan …

Ex-volunteer coach accused of having sex with student pleads not guilty

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A former Lincoln-Way Community High School District 210 volunteer gymnastics coach on Thursday pleaded not guilty in Will County Court to allegedly having sex with a student.

Isaac Kruspe, 20, of 11613 Stephanie Lane, Mokena, has been charged with criminal sexual assault of a minor …

President of Ireland plans Gaelic Park visit

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The president of Ireland will visit Gaelic Park next month and will attend Mass there on Mother’s Day, according to a news release from Gaelic Park. It will be the first visit by President Michael D. Higgins to the Irish cultural and athletic center, 6119 …

Out at Homewood-Flossmoor, Anthony Smith awaits IHSA fate

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Homewood-Flossmoor girls basketball coach Anthony Smith didn’t get good news this week when the District 233 school board voted Tuesday night not to bring him back as coach and as a teacher for the 2014-15 school year. Whether Smith coaches anywhere next season is the …

Southland teens volunteer to do good

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Planet Earth was in good hands Saturday as teens all over the world, including hundreds from the Southland, participated in the 26th annual Global Youth Service Day. “It’s about students coming from all over to come together to make a difference,” said Priscilla Steinmetz, co-founder …

Feuding couple leave young son home alone

A feuding Oak Forest couple left their 5-year-old home alone when each fled their apartment Saturday night after an argument, which they concluded hours later by causing a scene at a local bar, according to Oak Forest police.

The incident has been reported to the …