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Local News

  • Statehouse will close Oct. 1

    Vandalia officials knew to expect cuts at the Vandalia Statehouse after Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich cut about $1.4 billion from the state budget. But it was much worse than city officials could ever have imagined.

    The Illinois Historic Preservation Agency announced on Thursday afternoon that the Statehouse is among 24 historical sites and state parks that will be closed on Oct. 1 as a result of agency cuts by Blagojevich.

    “Our budget for historic sites was cut in half,” said Dave Blanchette of the IHPA, “so we had to decide how to address that.

  • BREAKING NEWS – Vandalia Statehouse will close

    The doors to the Vandalia Statehouse will be closed to tourists in a month.

    A spokesperson for the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency confirmed early Friday morning that the Statehouse is one of 12 state historic sites that are being closed as part of massive cuts implemented by the administration of Gov. Rod Blagojevich.

    The cutbacks include laying off 450 state workers, closing two dozen state parks and cutbacks in the state departments of Children and Family Services, Natural Resources and Human Services.

  • Goggin officially a write-in candidate

    Dan Goggin officially became a write-in state's attorney candidate on Friday.

    Goggin filed the paperwork with Fayette County Clerk and Recorder Terri D. Braun that entitles him to be a write-in candidate.

    He is seeking to defeat two-term incumbent Stephen Friedel, a Democrat.

  • Historic sites cuts listed

    The following cuts at Illinois' state historic sites are as follows:

    • Lincoln’s New Salem, Petersburg: Will open seven days per week starting in spring 2009 using funds from the Illinois Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission. The site is currently open five days per week, and received 432,176 visitors in 2007.

  • Brushing up

    First National Bank of Vandalia, Ramsey and Patoka has decided to follow recommendations from Illinois Historic Preservation Agency architects in making improvements to the exterior of the bank's main branch in downtown Vandalia. Those improvements include the removal of window awnings and painting the upper level of the exterior. Above, Shawn Ritchey (left) and Dwayne Ritchey of Ritchey Painting apply a new coat of paint to the brick exterior and wooden window frames.

  • Discover Fayette County in this week's issue

    Our annual section to showcases Fayette County individuals, organizations and businesses is included in this week's issue of The Leader-Union.

    Featured in this year's section are:

    Ronnie Stevens, Ramsey police officer and fire chief.

    Michel's Feed Store in Vandalia.

    Main Street Flowers and Gifts in St. Elmo.

    Farmer and Fayette County Farm Bureau director Keith Sanders.

    Brownstown native Alex Schwarm, who is making a film about his grandparents, Stanley and Edith Schwarm.

    Words, Wicks and Wood in Vandalia.

  • Committee supports 5 TIF projects

    A committee charged with making recommendations on the distribution of funds generated through Vandalia’s Tax Increment Financing program is supporting TIF aid to five applicants.

    That committee also tabled two applications, including one for assistance to make needed improvements to the Liberty Theater building on South Fourth Street and one for improvements to Vandalia Community High School.

  • Vandalia man gets 12 years for meth offenses

    A Vandalia man has been sentenced to more than 12 years in prison in federal court on methamphetamine charges.

    A. Courtney Cox, a U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Illinois, said on Monday that Brenton D. Bliss, 38, of rural Vandalia, was sentenced in U.S. District Court in East St. Louis to two terms of 151 months in the U.S. Bureau of Prisons. The two prison terms will run concurrently (at the same time).

  • Monday at 4 p.m.-Vandalia man sentenced in federal prison

    Brenton D. Bliss of rural Vandalia was sentenced to 151 months in prison in federal court.

    Bliss was sentenced for conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine and possession of meth with the intent to distribute and on a second county of possession of meth with the intent to deliver.

    For more, see this week's issue of The Leader-Union.

  • Council OKs documents for new elderly housing development

    The Vandalia City Council approved on Monday two documents related to a planned housing development geared toward elder residents of the community.

    The council OK’d a preliminary site plan and a preliminary plat for Glen Haven Subdivision, which is being developed by Kevin and Jessica Satterthwaite off of Locust Street, south of Fillmore Street.