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Today's News

  • Study needed for Vandalia's river intake

    An engineering firm that the city of Vandalia hired two months ago to resolve problems with its raw water intake on the Kaskaskia River says it will need to do an additional study before formulating a recommendation.

    Jim Wells of Gonzalez Companies told the city council on Monday that its initial inspection of the intake was delayed by high river levels.

    Once the level of the river dropped, Wells said, the engineers found that up to half of a finger dyke near the intake had been washed away.

  • Ed Mills influenced many as a teacher

    Though teachers and coaches have a unique opportunity to influence young people, few have done the job as well as Edward W. Mills.

    For 65 years, he worked in either a full-time or part-time capacity as a teacher, coach or volunteer at area schools. He began teaching at Vandalia High School in 1946, after serving in World War II. He taught general science and biology, but he also coached a number of sports and served as the basketball scorekeeper for 50 years

  • Greathouse stone survived toppling tree

    “War, like the thunderbolt, follows its laws and turns not aside even if the beautiful, the virtuous and the charitable stand in its path.”

    – Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman

    These are the words that came to mind Friday afternoon when I first saw the fallen "capital" oak, its trunk splintered as it lay on the ground in the Old State Burial Ground in Vandalia, a victim of the strong storms that passed through two weeks ago.

  • Jazz musicians share the gift at concert

    When you’re a jazz fan, you’re accustomed to being a minority. Popular musical tastes run in other directions.

    So it was on Saturday night, when my wife and I attended a jazz concert at Harris-Stowe State University in St. Louis. We were among a decided minority of whites in a predominantly black audience. But it wasn’t uncomfortable in the least.

    In fact, race didn’t seem to matter. What bound us together in color-blind unity was our love of music. And there was plenty of that to love.

  • Faulkners live in the 'House that Love Built'

    Last week, the Faulkner family – Rev. Raymond; his wife, Mollie; and daughter, Pricilla – were introduced, as they shared the story of Rev. Raymond’s decision to design and build a dream home for his wife, doing all the work himself, with the help of only Priscilla.

    Rev. Raymond began the project in 2002, after two years of purchasing and storing all the materials and supplies he would need for the 10-room two-story house, with five bathrooms, a utility room and large balcony.

  • Vernon man pleads to federal meth charges

    A Vernon man has pleaded guilty in federal court to three methamphetamine charges.

    Conrad J. Wynn, 28, pleaded guilty last Thursday to conspiracy to manufacture, distribute and possession with the intent to distribute 50 grams or more of methamphetamine, according to A. Courtney Cox, U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Illinois.

    Wynn also pleaded guilty to a count of possession with the intent to distribute 50 grams or more of methamphetamine and a count of possession of products, chemicals and materials for the purpose of manufacturing methamphetamine.

  • Bond set at $25,000 for two arrested for Brownstown burglaries.

    Bond has been set at $25,000 for two Brownstown men who are charged with breaking into six Brownstown businesses early last week.

    Fayette County State’s Attorney Stephen Friedel last week filed felony burglary charges against Justin Michael Waterman and Gaige S. Jackson.

  • City awarded $400,000 grant for Gallatin work

    The city of Vandalia learned on Wednesday that it had been awarded a grant for work on the downtown enhancement project.

    Mayor Rick Gottman announced at the monthly meeting of the Vandalia Chamber of Commerce that the city will be receiving $400,000 in Motor Fuel Tax funds from the Illinois Department of Transportation’s emergency repair program.

    The grant announcement was made earlier in the day by state Sen. Kyle McCarter (R-Lebanon), who was the guest speaker at Wednesday’s chamber meeting.

  • Quinn wants union's help in resolving prison layoffs issue

    As he met with Gov. Pat Quinn on Saturday, Mayor Rick Gottman had it reiterated to him that the union representing employees in state prisons are the key player in preventing a massive layoff of those workers.

    Gottman had the opportunity to present to Quinn at the DuQuoin State Fair on Saturday his arguments for reversing the plan to lay off about 1,000 Illinois Department of Corrections employees, including 127 workers at Vandalia Correctional Center, at the end of this month.

  • Vandals run all over Wood River

    The Vandalia football season got off to a running start on Friday, as the Vandals defeated East Alton-Wood River, 40-0.

    It was a combination of Vandalia’s defense and running game that led them past the Oilers.

    “I thought the kids came ready to play,” head coach John Stout said. “I though the offensive line did a great job blocking…It’s a good way to get started.”