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Local News

  • City hires firm to look at river intake

    The city of Vandalia is turning to another engineering firm in yet another attempt to get its raw water intake on the Kaskaskia River fully operational.

    The Vandalia City Council voted on Monday to hire Gonzalez Companies to study the intake, which has been used very little since its installation in May 2005.

    Through that agreement, the engineering firm will complete within 70 days a study on the river intake. The city will pay the firm a maximum of $22,500 for its work.

  • Entries taken for karaoke contest at fair

    Entries are now being accepted for the karaoke contest that will be held next Tuesday evening at the Fayette County Fair.

    The contest, sponsored by WKRV Radio in Vandalia, will be held at 7:30 p.m.

    Cash prizes will be awarded.

    To register, contact WKRV Radio at 283-2325 during normal business hours.

  • Vandalia ready to distribute Looking for Lincoln rubbing kits

    From the time that the state established the Looking for Lincoln Heritage Coalition, Vandalia has always been in the forefront of completing projects designed to tell the story of Abraham Lincoln in Illinois.

    Shortly after the state announced the startup of the coalition, which is made up of communities with Lincoln history, Mayor Rick Gottman formed a local Looking for Lincoln Committee, choosing Bill Donaldson to lead that group.

  • Committee backs TIF funds for Depot project

    A local family hoping to bring back a popular downtown Vandalia restaurant and bar took another step toward that goal on Tuesday.

    John Truitt Jr. of Shobonier heads a family group that wants to purchase The Depot property and rebuild the business that was gutted by fire close to two years ago.

    On Tuesday, Truitt received the backing of city officials and members of the city’s Tax Increment Financing in his attempt to use TIF monies for The Depot project.

  • Kaskaskia College continuing to grow

    In the past nine years, Kaskaskia College has grown more than any other community college. With 62-percent growth since 2001, KC ranks far ahead of even the second-place community college on that list, Joliet Community College, at 39 percent.

    That success has been possible, KC President Dr. James Underwood said at an open forum last week, because the institution has continued is philosophy of being accessible to the people who want to continue their education.

    Underwood said Kaskaskia offers classes at close to 10 sites within its district boundaries.

  • FAYCO facing large cuts

    It was only a couple of months ago that it took a team effort to prevent the closure of the Illinois Department of Human Services office in Vandalia. Now, it is a local organization that receives state funds through DHS that has an uncertain future.

    Bob Lindberg, executive director of FAYCO Enterprises, recently received a letter from the DHS stating that the agency will lose a number of grant programs and see significant reductions in funding for other programs if Gov. Pat Quinn OKs the budget presented by the Illinois General Assembly.

  • City's Motown forum goes off without any criticism

    Anyone who expected Vandalia officials to hear criticism about the $300-million sports and entertainment complex proposed for the city’s west side during a public forum last Thursday were likely surprised.

    That forum, set up by city officials after some residents asked for more information about the project proposed by Motown Technology and Sports Facility Inc., was exactly that – an informational meeting.

  • Downtown project currently ahead of schedule

    Despite all of the rain in recent weeks, the downtown improvement project is moving along at a good pace.

    At Vandalia Main Street’s fourth “Mornings on Main Street” meeting, Lorne Jackson of HMG Engineers told a group of downtown merchants that contractors have been able to stay ahead of the proposed pace.

    “As you can tell, we’ve gone to stage II of the project, between Sixth and Seventha streets,” Jackson said.

  • Ramsey Daze begins on Thursday

    The 21st annual Ramsey Daze celebration is Thursday through Saturday.

    A large carnival set up in Lions Park will be open from 6-10 p.m. the first two nights and from 6-11 p.m. on Saturday.

    Eleven boys and girls are entered in the annual Little Miss and Mister Pageant that starts the weekend celebration at 6 p.m. Thursday, followed by an evening of free music by the “Prairieland Pickers.” Reigning royalty are Brenna Hayes and Mister Zayn Sidener.

    Friday night features the annual garden tractor pull and more free music, all starting at 6 p.m.

  • Traffic study for Motown project OK'd

    If it comes to fruition, the $300-million sports and entertainment complex planned for Vandalia’s west side will obviously create much more traffic in that part of town.

    One of the first steps in that project is taking a close look at the impact of such a complex on traffic in the area of the western Interstate 70 interchange.

    The Vandalia City Council voted on Monday to hire Crawford, Bunte and Brammeier, a traffic and transportation engineering firm, to perform such a study.