The Commercial-News, Danville, IL

Editorials

May 2, 2014

People begin to speak up

The voices of Illinois voters stand to increase in volume significantly if an effort to pull a big piece of political power out of the hands of the General Assembly works as its supporters hope.

A group called Yes for Independent Maps filed petitions Thursday with the Illinois Board of Elections in Springfield with more than 500,000 signatures — more than twice the number needed — to allow an independent commission to draw boundaries for Illinois House and Senate districts.

The state goes through the process every 10 years, and the party in power at the time — it really doesn’t matter which one it is — can slide boundary lines all over the place until they create legislative districts most beneficial to its members.

What’s nice for the politicians, however, leaves out the most important part of the electoral process — the voters. While the gerrymandered boundaries help the same people be elected time after time, it can fracture common concerns among residents. For example, parts of Vermilion County are in three House districts and two Senate districts. That kind of self-serving political maneuvering muffles what could be a loud, united view from local residents.

Democrats, who happen to be the majority party in the House and Senate, call the ballot effort a “power grab” by Republicans. If roles were reversed, it would the the GOP’s representatives calling it a “power grab” by the Democrats.

Illinois lawmakers don;t want voters involved in their fun in Springfield. They’ve already knocked down an attempt to put the idea of term limits up for a vote, they are creating all sorts of horrific scenarios to build support to expend the state’s “temporary” income tax increase and they simply ignored a proposal to allow voters to decide on a progressive income tax plan.

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Editorials
  • Put full focus on driving Illinois motorists, thanks to a recent state law, should not use a hand-held mobile device such as a cell phone while they drive. However, anyone who has even casually watched traffic pass by knows many drivers ignore the law.Distracted driving can c

    July 27, 2014

  • Two extremes in job market The local employment scene seems a bit schizophrenic lately. Local officials point to a large number of job openings in the area, but at the same time the Danville Metropolitan Statistical Area recorded the highest unemployment rate in June of all 12

    July 25, 2014

  • No news can be good news As the problems at some Department of Veterans Affairs medical centers continue to come to light, we’ve heard no complaints about the VA’s Illiana Health Care System. That’s good news for those who receive treatment there and for those who work there

    July 23, 2014

  • Donate to Salvation Army Believe it or not, one Danville District 118 school will open its doors Monday to begin a new year. Northeast Elementary Magnet School operates on a balanced calendar, and will start classes next week.The remainder of Danville and area schools will b

    July 18, 2014

  • Downtown remains key Members of Downtown Danville Inc. say goodbye soon to the group’s director, Dana Schaumburg, as she steps away to pursue other professional opportunities. Shaumburg has done a nice job with DDI, and everyone wishes her luck.The opening gives DDI memb

    July 13, 2014

  • Laura Lee vital to all Laura Lee Fellowship House marks its 100th year of serving the Danville community this year, and its leaders also must deal with a serious threat to the agency.Tough economic times during the past decade or so have rocked many non-profit agencies. No

    July 11, 2014

  • Demolitions will help all Danville officials recently approved spending more than $200,000 to remove vacant, dilapidated structures. That’s a hefty piece of change, but spending the money now should yield dividends in the future.City officials have fought a battle against dil

    July 9, 2014

  • Celebrate our birthday Flags will fly today, fireworks will explode and freedom will be celebrated as Americans mark their Independence Day, the Fourth of July. For 238 years, we have marked the day with speeches, parades and all sorts of festivities — just as those who si

    July 4, 2014

  • New trail will help many A long-planned recreational trail between Kickapoo State Park just northwest of Danville and the city of Urbana moved significantly closer to reality this week with the state’s announcement it had purchased the final piece of property for the project

    July 3, 2014

  • Jobs mean more than pay Area teenagers might find it more difficult to land summer jobs these days as they compete with adult workers who lack specific skills needed for higher paying positions.The situation outlined in a story on Page 1A of today’s Commercial-News shows jo

    June 29, 2014

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