Local News

  • St. Elmo mayor fires police chief

    Two days after St. Elmo Mayor Larry Tish locked horns with Police Chief Ken Thomason at a city council meeting, Tish fired the police chief.

    Tish presented Thomason with a letter on Wednesday in which he stated that Thomason's termination was effective immediately.

    As for any explanation of the termination, Tish stated in the letter only that, "It is my opinion that the interests of the municipality demand your removal as chief of police."

  • Friday at 4 p.m. " LaMar among supporters of terminated police chief

    “We need a lot more of those hung up in town,” a female yelled from her vehicle Friday afternoon as she saw Michael L. LaMar holding a “Reinstate the Chief” at the intersection of U.S. Route 40 and Main Street.

    Upon learning that the female wanted one of those signs, LaMar pulled one from the bed of this truck.

  • Woolsey has had success in the service, in local business

    Woolsey Brothers is a name that is well-known, well-respected and trusted in all of Fayette County … and beyond.

    Its farm supply service is known for the integrity, fairness, and dependability that their customers, as well as their employees, have come to expect over the years.

    The continuity of this well-deserved reputation is largely due to Herb Woolsey, although he would modestly decline the credit.

  • Man gets 12 years for attack, robbery

    A Vandalia man who was arrested in April of this year on battery and robbery charges has been sentenced to 12 years in prison last week in Fayette County Circuit Court.

    Judge Dennis Middendorff of Carlyle sentenced John C. Taylor on Friday, Oct. 23, about 10 weeks after Taylor entered an open plea of guilty to a charge of vehicular invasion.

    In handing down the sentence, Middendorff gave Taylor, 37, credit for time he has served in the Fayette County Jail since his arrest in April.

  • Filing for primary election concludes

    When they go to the polls in the spring, Fayette County voters won’t have to spend too much time making decisions.

    That’s because, at least at this time, those individuals running for county offices are unopposed.

    The filing period for the Feb. 2, 2010, primary election ended Monday without any surprises.

  • Two hurt in fire at St. Elmo facility

    Two employees at a natural gas storage facility north of St. Elmo were injured last Wednesday in a fire that caused several explosions.

    The Fayette County Sheriff’s Office was notified just before 1 p.m. of the incident at the Natural Gas Pipeline Co. of America about six miles north of town.

    The fire reportedly was started by welding being done on a product tank. Anywhere from two to four explosions occurred after the fire was started.

  • Family YMCA holds groundbreaking for new facility

    After years of work by several committees to create a community recreation center in Vandalia, about 50 people took part in a groundbreaking ceremony Tuesday that kicks off the construction phase of that dream.

    The Family Y of Fayette County’s new home will be built on a 4-acre tract east of Rock Island Avenue, just across the street from the Kaskaskia College campus. The actual location of the building will be east of Miller Field, which fronts on Rock Island.

  • National Road Center receives $101,750 grant

    A Vandalia representative on the National Road Association of Illinois Board concedes that a recent grant received by the group won’t provide funding for everything it needs. But it comes pretty darn close.

    “We will always have things that we need to take care of or want to add, but this will come pretty close to giving us what we need,” said Mary Truitt.

    Truitt was referring to the $101,750 grant awarded by the Federal Highway Administration for the National Road Interpretive Center in Vandalia.

  • Area Halloween Activities

    Vandalia Lions Club

    Halloween Parade – This Thursday at 7 p.m.


    Vandalia Trick or Treat Night – Saturday, 6-8 p.m.


    Brownstown Trick or Treat – Saturday, 5-7 p.m., with party afterward

    in Brownstown Park.


    St. Elmo Trick or Treat – Saturday, 6-8 p.m.

    Brookstone Estates Safe Trick or Treat – Saturday, 6-8 p.m.


    Deken Park Haunted Trail in St. Elmo – 7-10 p.m. on Friday and 8-11 p.m. on Saturday.

  • A roundabout way of handling traffic

    It’s been a little more than six years since Highland officials let residents of that city know that they planned to handle a congested intersection with a roundabout, instead of stoplights.

    Many of the residents responded with, to say the least, skepticism.

    But once they started using that roundabout, those same residents told city officials that it was the right decision.

    In fact, the roundabout went over so well that the city added a second roundabout late last year, one that replaced stoplights.