CHICAGO (AP) - Tens of thousands of Illinois households have been cut off of federal food stamps as a state agency transitions to a new computer system that handles such benefits. The Chicago Tribune reports that problems come after the Illinois Department of Human Services rolled out the second phase of a new computer system. A certain number of people who receive food stamps lose benefits each month because of missed deadlines or ineligibility, but that number grew significantly in November.
CHICAGO (AP) - A Chicago program is aiming to redefine stereotypical images of masculinity in hopes of combatting violence. The Chicago Tribune reports that "What's Up With Manhood?" was created by the nonprofit Options for Youth. Organizers say they hope to promote healthy relationships and choices, and instill a sense of responsibility.
HUDSON, Ill. (AP) - A Canadian company that plans to make grain-handling equipment in a central Illinois village has closed on a building that will house its new plant. Brandt Group of Companies closed Friday on a former Kongskilde Industries plant in Hudson, paving the way for it to begin hiring the first of what could eventually number 500 workers. Brandt's chairman says the plant in the community just north of Normal is essentially ready to go.
CHICAGO (AP) - A top member of the Cook County prosecutor's office has resigned after an internal review found he referred business to his old law firm and it billed the county more than the county's standard legal services rate. Chaka Patterson resigned Friday. County records show Patterson hired his former employer, Jones Day, to handle two cases and it billed the county at rates up to $500 an hour. The county's standard rate is $185 an hour.
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