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Local News

  • Monday at 9 a.m.: Frank Watson stepping down

    State Sen. Frank Watson announced on Monday morning that he will be resigning from the Illinois Senate.

    Watson, a Greenville resident who has served as the Senate minority leader in recent years, continues to recover from a stroke he suffered last October.

    Watson said Monday morning that he is resigning for several reasons, including his need to continue rehabilitation and his desire to spend more time with his family, which includes wife Susan, two children and a grandson.

    For the complete story, see this Thursday's issue of The Leader-Union.

  • VCC warden placed on leave

    The warden of Vandalia Correctional Center has been placed on administrative leave.

    Derek Schnapp, spokesperson for the Illinois Department of Corrections, confirmed late Wednesday afternoon that Vandalia Correctional Center Warden Steve Mensing had been placed on administrative leave.

    Schnapp declined to release the reason for the disciplinary action against Mensing, citing the IDOC policy on personnel matters.

    Schnapp said that Mensing will continue to be paid while on administrative leave.

  • Deem, McCarty receive Abe Awards

    Rodney Deem and Tom McCarty were named the 2009 recipients of the Vandalia Chamber of Commerce's Abe Awards at the chamber's annual banquet on Thursday evening.

    Also at the banquet, the chamber's 2008 president, Doug Knebel, handed over the reins of the organization to the 2009 president, Joanna Helm.

    The complete story will appear in Thursday's issue of The Leader-Union.

     

  • Two meetings on consolidation of St. Elmo and Brownstown school districts held
  • York makes first appearance in court with new attorney

    A rural Ramsey man who pleaded guilty late last year to the murder of his unborn child will likely have to wait two months to argue for a reduced sentence.

    Michael York of rural Ramsey made his first appearance in court with his new attorney on Tuesday, about six weeks after he made known that he wants a reduction in his sentence.

  • Tonight's consolidation meeting in Brownstown still on

    Note from Brownstown and St. Elmo school district officials:

    Tonight’s Consolidation Informational Meeting will still be held at the Brownstown Elementary Cafeteria at 6:00 p.m. for anyone who wishes to travel this evening. The same meeting format will be held Thursday evening at St. Elmo High School Cafeteria at 7:00 p.m. Please note that there will be other meetings scheduled between now and the April elections for those who do not wish to journey out.

  • Winter storm hits Fayette County

    Fayette County received its biggest snowfall in recent years via winter storms on Monday and Tuesday.

    The storm meant work for some people, including Marlin Filer, shown here using a road grader to clear streets in downtown Vandalia.

    For others, the storm brought enjoyment. Two photos here show sisters Haley and Sarah Bigelow sledding on Tuesday afternoon at the former Washington School, and a third photo shows Cheslea Kozak (left) and Carley Rathbone sledding on the Evans Scout House grounds on Randolph Street in Vandalia.

  • Four towns will have mayoral races

    Residents in four Fayette County communities will have a choice when voting for mayor in April.

    As the filing period for the April 7 consolidated election ended on Monday, races for mayor (or village president) formed in Vandalia, Brownstown, St. Elmo and Farina.

    VANDALIA

    Mayor Rick Gottman has two challengers as he seeks a third term in office. Also filing for the mayoral race were John David Wehrle Jr. and Neil F. Clark.

    City Clerk Peggy Bowen and City Treasurer Marjorie Blythe are both unopposed in running for their fourth terms in office.

  • Main Street's 'Nite at the Races' is Feb. 7

    The Vandalia Main Street Program will hold its fifth annual "Nite at the Races" on Saturday, Feb. 7, at the Vandalia Country & Golf Club.

    A social hour at 6 p.m. is followed by eight consecutive horse races, with the first getting under way at 7 p.m.

    Tickets are $15 per person in advance and $20 at the door. Prizes will be awarded for best-decorated tables, best-dressed jockey and ladies with fancy hats. The evening concludes with a live auction.

    For tickets, contact the Main Street office, 283-8751.

  • Agendas set for St. Elmo-Brownstown consolidation hearings

    The St. Elmo and Brownstown school district officials have set the agendas for the public hearings being held this week on the proposed consolidation.

    The first hearing will be held at 6 p.m. on Wednesday in the Brownstown Elementary School cafeteria, and the second will be held at 7 p.m. on Thursday in the St. Elmo Junior-Senior High School cafeteria.

    The agenda for both meetings is as follows:

    1) Roll Call.

    2) Opening statements by Dean Buzzard, co-chairman of the Committee of Ten formed for the consolidation.