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THUMBS UP! For keeping things on hold. It's unclear when Macon County officials will take any vote on a $7.5 million "sustainability campus."  The county board says it's working to determine whether the county can afford to build and operate the facility. The idea to put the campus on property purchased for that purpose by benefactor Howard Buffett has been OK'd by the board's Environmental, Education, Health & Welfare Committee. The board says it's waiting on the completion of an audit before taking advantage of Buffett's additional offer of paying for a consultant to determine the financial feasibility of the project. Yes, hazardous waste and chemicals are a public health issue. But the system is designed to make sure an effective plan is implemented. The current plan might be perfect. We have time to find out.

THUMBS UP! To senior advocacy group AARP. The group is backing a proposed Illinois bill that would defend the rights of those in senior care. The bill addresses such issues as staffing mandates, psychotropic drug use and reporting of care violations. The AARP said a study it conducted showed Illinois nursing homes have the worst rate in the nation for patient-to-staff care hours per day, and the second-worst rate in the nation for giving antipsychotic drugs without a psychiatric diagnosis. This is another issue that has to be repaired, and should be improved whether the bill reaches the floor or not. It's going to take two of the things we don't like to give up – money and manpower.

THUMBS DOWN! To allergies. Spring is coming. We promise it is. If you're a person whose nose runs and whose eyes itch, you know what comes along with robins and flowers. We share your frustration, and hope the suffering this year is at a minimum. In the meantime, the lucky ones can practice saying “Gesundheit” and passing Kleenex over.

THUMBS UP! To the Utah Jazz of the National Basketball Association. A player's tense interaction with a fan during a game earlier this week went viral. After the shock of the player's words dissipated, further investigation showed the fan in question had a social media presence (since erased) that included racist posts. The team has banned the fan from returning. As the distance between billionaire owners, millionaire players and working class fans has grown, the performers have found themselves under fire for everything from their play, their salaries and their race or nationality. Our sporting arenas are another place where we need to work more at civility.

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