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Local News

  • Motown visit postponed again

    The fate of the plan to build a $300-million sports and entertainment complex will now not be known until early December.

    Director of Economic Development and Tourism JoAnn Givens told the Vandalia City Council on Monday night that Kenneth Bardwell, chairman and chief executive officer of Motown Technology and Sports Facility Inc., plans to visit with city officials on Dec. 7.

    At the council meeting on that date, Bardwell will present a request for an extension on the deadline for providing proof to the city that Motown has obtained the financing for the project.

  • A team effort to battle the flu bug

    Rumors that there have been cases of H1N1 flu in Fayette County are just not true, according to local health officials.

    “We have had no confirmed cases (of H1N1),” said Kendra Craig of the Fayette County Health Department.

    But the FCHD, along with local school officials, are working to prevent and treat cases of both H1N1 and regular flu as flu season gets under way.

  • School district has good audit, but still has some challenges

    The Vandalia Board of Education heard some good news on the financial and educational fronts Tuesday night. But those positive reports were balanced by several challenges that still face the district.

    On the positive side, the board heard an upbeat audit report from Joe Barth of the accounting firm of Luallen, Cearlock, Barth & Burnam. Barth noted the district’s “strong fund balances,” and said that the district “is on the right track” financially.

  • Funk, Taylor are grand marshals for Lions' parade

    As it organizes its Halloween parade each year, the Vandalia Lions Club honors an individual who has made a commitment to community service. This year, the club is honoring two men, both of whom have never seen the parade

    Lifelong Vandalia residents Don Funk and Ed Taylor have never seen the Lions’ parade because they’ve been part of the club leadership organizing and pulling off the Halloween event.

  • Motown officials to visit in November

    Representatives of the Michigan group that wants to build a $300-million sports and entertainment complex in Vandalia plan to come to town next month to request an extension on a deadline for presenting financial information.

    Mayor Rick Gottman said Wednesday morning that he was told on Tuesday that Motown Technology & Sports Facility Inc. plan to attend one of the two city council meetings in November.

  • IDOT considering roundabout for Veterans and Sunset

    The Illinois Department of Transportation is studying the feasibility of a traffic roundabout at Veterans Avenue and Sunset Drive, city officials reported last week. Traffic often gets clogged at the intersection, Mayor Rick Gottman said. “It could make it more flowable,” he said. “[IDOT] has to do a lot of surveying, studies, public hearings. The idea is very much in the infancy stage now.” The circular road junction – popularized in Europe – is designed to slow traffic and redirect drivers in a one-way stream around a central island.

  • Workers finishing up second block of downtown project

    At least one block of downtown Vandalia that has been left dark because of the streetscape project should be illuminated in the near future.

    At Vandalia Main Street’s “Mornings on Main Street” meeting on Tuesday, Lorne Jackson of HMG Engineers told city officials and downtown merchants that the general contractor, Hank’s Excavating of Belleville, is waiting for a key piece of lighting equipment.

  • McCarter will seek election to Senate

    The man who eight months ago was appointed to fill Frank Watson’s vacated state senate seat, last week announced his intentions to run for a full term in that office.

    State Sen. Kyle McCarter, R-Lebanon, was in Vandalia last Wednesday to announce his re-election plans from the steps of the Vandalia Statehouse. He also spoke that day in Decatur, Greenville and Highland.

  • National Road Center receives grant

    The Federal Highway Administration has announced that a grant of $101,750 has been awarded to the National Road Interpretive Center in Vandalia, Illinois. The project will allow the Illinois National Road Association to develop a prime Interpretive Center that will house exhibit materials, an interpretive guide and planning materials.

  • Judge puts state layoffs on hold

    Just two days before Gov. Pat Quinn’s plan to layoff more than 2,600 state employees – including 127 at Vandalia Correctional Center – was to kick in, a Southern Illinois judge put that plan on hold.

    Judge Todd Lambert issues in Johnson County Circuit Court on Monday a preliminary injunction that provides more time for the governor and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, the union representing the majority of Illinois Department of Corrections employees, for bargaining on three AFSCME grievances.