Local News

  • Thomason to compete at state pageant

    The IAAF Convention will be held Jan. 19-23 at the Crowne Plaza in Springfield. At this convention, county fair officials can get ideas and book events for their 2012 fair.

  • ISU honoring Dr. Laurie Mabry on Sunday

    Illinois State University will honor a Vandalia woman who served as the university’s director of women’s athletics for more than two decades and coached two of the school’s women’s teams.
    “Laurie Mabry Day” this Sunday at ISU will kick off a year-long celebration of the Redbirds’ women’s athletics.

  • Council OKs TIF grants

    As they approved two Tax Increment Financing grants on Monday, Vandalia’s aldermen continued to ask for some local TIF guidelines.
    The council awarded a $7,575 grant to BTW Inc. for improvements to facilities at 120 N. Sixth St. and a $10,800 grant to Dennis Grubaugh for structural repairs to a building at 511 W. Gallatin St.
    With the funds given to BTW Inc., Brian Westendorf plans to do concrete work, and install new fencing and gates, overhead doors, new metal siding and trim, a new roof, new signage and new electrical wiring.

  • KC begins discussions on Phase II of Vandalia Campus

    When they opened the doors to the Vandalia Campus, about four years ago, Kaskaskia College officials expressed hope of receiving state funds that would double the size of the local campus.
    Last Friday, KC President Jim Underwood and other college officials reported that the receipt of those state funds is pending

  • Gallatin Work Essentially Done

    Mayor Rick Gottman told the Vandalia City Council last week that the streetscape work on Gallatin Street between Seventh and Eighth streets is essentially complete.

    The latest improvements, including a new road surface, period lights, new sidewalks and new curbs and gutters, was funded solely with state grant funds. Fayette County paid for the lowering of the slope on the north entrance to the courthouse and jail parking lot.

  • Man found guilty of sex crimes

    A St. Elmo man was convicted of sex crimes in a jury trial last week in Fayette County Circuit Court.
    The jury deliberated about 90 minutes before returning guilty verdicts against Jeremy Wayne McMillian.
    McMillian, 37, was found guilty of two counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse (sexual conduct and sexual penetration) and one count of criminal sexual assault.
    All three counts allege that McMillian committed the offenses on or about Nov. 13, 2010.

  • County still struggling with finances

    “It’s the same old song and dance,” Fayette County Board Chairman Steve Knebel said at Tuesday’s board meeting while talking about the county’s financial picture.
    The failure of the state to keep up with the payments owed to the county, Knebel said, continues to cause major problems.
    “You know that $355,000 that we set aside in the budget – we’re already into it,” Knebel said.

  • Former St. Elmo librarian arrested for theft

    More than six months after an Illinois State Police investigation into the financial records of the St. Elmo Public Library District, the district’s former librarian has been arrested for theft.
    Terri E. Gillespie, 51, of St. Elmo, turned herself at the Fayette County Jail on Saturday, two days after the office of Fayette County State’s Attorney Stephen Friedel filed theft charges against her.

  • Museum has two new displays

    New exhibits are on display at the Fayette County Museum.
    One display case features Fayette County advertising calendars from 1890-1964. Paper, die-cut and two calendar plates are included.
    Ramsey is represented by two unique calendars from Lindhorst’s Mammoth Store in 1914; J. B. Green & Son in 1903, 1904, 1908 and 1909; and Ramsey National Bank in 1917.
    Brownstown is represented by calendars from D.O. Pitcher in 1912 and 1913, and from Griffith Bros. and Co. in 1939.
    The Civil War is featured in the other two special cases.

  • State Quitline offers help with smoking cessation

    The Fayette County Health Department is recommending assistance for individuals who are trying to quit smoking as a New Year's resolution.
    Those who are trying to call the Tobacco Quitline, 1-866-QUIT-YES.
    Sonsored by the Illinois Department of Public Health and the American Lung Association, the Tobacco Quitline is offered free of charge.
    Those who are trying to quit smoking receive support through the Quitline, and they can learn whether they are eligible to receive free nicotene replacement patches through the Fayette County Health Department.