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Local News

  • City grants Motown 7-month extension

    Two months after the deadline passed for Motown Technology to provide proof of financing for a $300-million sports and entertainment complex in Vandalia, the Vandalia City Council gave the group seven more months to provide that proof.

    The council approved that extension in a 6-1 vote after hearing that Motown has received a letter of intent for the financing of that project.

  • City spending cuts laid out

    A Vandalia City Council committee last week supported revisions to this fiscal year’s budget, and agreed to pass on to the full council a recommendation for a second water rate increase in three months.

    However, the council ­– after meeting in closed session for about an hour – ­voted not to endorse a suggestion for furlough days for city employees.

  • FCH Board puts operator on notice

    After hearing a plea for financial relief from the chairman of the board of the company that operates the hospital, the Fayette County Hospital District Board on Monday agreed to return to that company more than $74,000 each month for five months.

    That $74,000 represents the amount that the operator, Heartland Health System Inc., is obligated to pay the district board each month under its operating agreement. Under the conditions agreed to on Monday, Heartland will use that money to help pay for the non-reimbursed charity care it provides to FCH patients.

  • Motown scheduled to visit on Monday

    The future of a proposed $300-million sports and entertainment complex in Vandalia should be known by the beginning of next week.

    Representatives of Michigan-based Motown Technology & Sports Facility Inc. are scheduled to be at Monday’s meeting of the Vandalia City Council to ask for more time to provide proof of financing for the proposed project.

  • City committee supports budget revisions, water rate increase

    A number of revisions to the city of Vandalia's budget for the current fiscal year will take effect on Tuesday following a committee meeting on Tuesday.

    At a meeting on Tuesday evening, the council’s personnel, finance and insurance committee also recommended that the council vote on an increase in water rates.

    However, that committee ¬ – after meeting in closed session for about an hour ¬– voted not to recommend that the council consider at this time furlough days for city employees.

  • Progress on U.S. Route 51 expansion plans explained

    It will still be some time before Fayette County residents will see U.S. Route 51 being expanded to four lanes, but they do now have a better idea of where the four lanes will run.

    At public meetings last week, Illinois Department of Transportation officials and representatives of Clark Dietz Inc., a Champaign engineering firm partnering with IDOT on the Route 51 expansion, presented preliminary alignments showing the likely paths of the four-lane roadway.

  • City looks at budget-cutting measures

    Vandalia officials were saying through the early part of this year that despite a sagging economy nationally, the city was still seeing strong retail sales tax numbers.

    That picture changed later in the year, however, and it is one of the factors causing city officials to look at some budget-tightening measures in the new fiscal year.

    In fact, they are working with department heads and city aldermen to make some cuts in the current budget year, which ends next April.

  • FCH Auxiliary Crafts Bazaar on Saturday moved to FCH

    The Fayette County Hospital Auxiliary has moved its fall Crafts Bazaar this Saturday to the conference room at Fayette County Hospital.

    The bazaar will be held from 8:30 a.m.-3 p.m.

  • BREAKING NEWS-Mayor's dismissal of police chief stands

    A 3-3 vote by the St. Elmo City Council at a special meeting on Thursday night means that Mayor Larry Tish’s dismissal of Ken Thomason from the chief of police position stands.

    About 240 city residents were on hand for the meeting, which was moved from the Phillips Building to the St. Elmo Elementary School because of the size of the crowd.

    At the close of the meeting, which lasted about an hour, aldermen Chris Worman and Mike McCall, and Tish, voted to uphold Thomason’s dismissal.

  • St. Elmo council uphold mayor's decision

    A 3-3 vote by the St. Elmo City Council at a special meeting on Thursday night means that Mayor Larry Tish’s dismissal of Ken Thomason from the chief of police position stands.

    About 240 city residents were on hand for the meeting, which was moved from the Phillips Building to the St. Elmo Elementary School because of the size of the crowd. About a dozen area police officers checked everyone with handheld metal detectors as they entered the building.