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Today's News

  • Second half shutout gives Vandals first loss

    In its second game of the season, Friday night, Vandalia was shut out in the second half by Carlinville, giving the Vandals their first loss of the season, 44-19.

    “We knew they had everybody coming back from last year, and they won the western side of the conference last year. We thought we’d have to come up here and play pretty well,” head coach John Stout said.

  • Pro-business plan is best budget fix

    In his life outside his duties as a state senator, Kyle McCarter is a businessman. And he plans to keep his business ties to remind himself that his votes as a senator have a real-world impact on the state's businesses.

    It's a perspective some of his fellow legislators apparently have forgotten.

  • Local inventors made their mark

    The late Dr. George Ross published a history column in The Centralia Sentinel newspaper, and from time-to-time my friend, Emory Meador, would hand me an envelope stuffed with some of Dr. Ross’ articles that he thought would interest me.

    One of these was a compiled list of 42 Marion County inventors. I came across this list the other day and thought to myself, if Marion County has 42 inventors, then so does Fayette County.

  • Darn Far Ranch provides man with service dog

    Tammie Rogers and her husband, Robert, who live and operate their Darn Far Ranch northwest of Brownstown are doing what they love to do best – working with and training dogs…and the dogs’ humans.

    Sometimes, a really special dog comes along that is needed by a special person. Tammie recently shared this touching story that has a happy, tail-wagging ending. “Bree” is that special dog and Kevin Boston of Greenville the special person.

  • Downtown project still ahead of schedule

    Vandalia’s downtown enhancement project continues to progress ahead of schedule, and – weather permitting – much of the major work could be done by the end of this year.

    “I’d say that we’re every bit of three weeks (ahead of schedule),” Terry Fields of Hank’s Excavating said after Vandalia Main Street’s “Mornings on Main Street” meeting on Wednesday morning.

  • County approves two court filing fee increases

    Several years ago, the Fayette County board turned down a request from the circuit clerk to increase two filing fees collected by her office, saying that the monies generated by those fees were not being used.

    On Tuesday night, as another request was made by the new circuit clerk, the board found out why those increases are needed at this time.

    Board members unanimously approved increasing both the automation and document storage fees to $15 after Circuit Clerk Mary Sue Ruot told them about a mandate passed down by the Illinois Supreme Court.

  • Water, sewer rate hikes recommended

    One year after approving a small sewer rate increase and scaling back the recommended water rate increase, the Vandalia City Council has been asked to increase both rates again this year.

    In presenting the annual city audit, Dale Timmermann of Timmermann & Co. Ltd. recommended a 7.19-percent increase in water rates and a 2.19-percent hike in sewer rates.

    Those recommended increases mirror the percentage increases in water and sewer expenses over the past year, Timmermann said.

  • 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.