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Today's News

  • Two given 14-year prison terms

    For the second time within a month, a Fayette County man has been sentenced to 14 years in prison for a sex crime.

    Edward Cunningham, 30, of Vandalia, was given a 14-year sentence on Tuesday by Fayette County Resident Circuit Judge S. Gene Schwarm.

    Cunningham was found guilty of aggravated criminal sexual abuse at a jury trial last November.

  • Grace period for voter registration ends Tuesday

    Last Tuesday was the voter registration deadline for the Feb. 5 primary election. But, anyone who needs to register still has time to do so.

    Fayette County Clerk and Recorder Terri D. Braun, the countys election official, said on Tuesday that a state grace period essentially extends the time allowed for voter registration.

    However, Braun emphasized, those who register or the states grace period which began on Wednesday and runs through next Tuesday must cast their primary election votes in her office. Brauns office is on the first floor of the Fayette County Courthouse.

  • Route 51 hearings are next Thursday

    The Illinois Department of Transportation will hold three public hearings in January on the continued four-lane expansion of U.S. Route 51, with two of those meetings being held in Fayette County.

    IDOT will hold one public meeting from 1-4 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 24, in the multi-purpose room at the Kaskakia College Vandalia Campus, and a second meeting that day from 5:30-8 p.m. at Ramsey High School.

    A third hearing will be held from 5-8 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 23, in Centralia City Council chambers.

  • Federal funds used to buy new radio equipment for sheriff's office

    Fayette County will be taking another look into Enhanced 911 emergency phone service for residents of the county. But the possible introduction of that service is not the main reason for the replacement of the communications system at the Fayette County Sheriff's Office.

    Rather, the new equipment is being purchased because of the age and condition of the existing equipment.

    U.S. Congressman John Shimkus (R-Ill.-19th District) came to Vandalia last Friday to present Sheriff Aaron Lay and several members of the county board with a check for $211,500.

  • Vandalia Schools to get more funds from the state

    Though it still must be signed by the governor, legislation approved last week by Illinois legislators would mark the first increase in the states per-pupil education funding since 1985.

    That $400 increase per student per year brings the states annual base funding level to $5,734 per student. For the Vandalia Community School District, that means an increase in state funding of about $250,000, according to Superintendent Rich Well.

  • Lady Vandals hold off Hillsboro

    The basketball gods seemed to be smiling on the Vandalia girls basketball team Monday night.

    Just 48 hours after draining victory in the championship of the Sandoval Invitational, the unthinkable seemed possible - an easy road victory at Hillsboro.

    It would have been just what the doctor ordered for the visibly weary Lady Vandals, who enjoyed a 31-16 lead early in the third quarter. But it turns out it was too good to be true.

    The Lady Hiltoppers used a 3-point barrage to storm back from a 15-point third-quarter deficit, taking a 39-38 with 2:18 to go.

  • Earnest wins big-time bowling tournament

    Note to anyone bowling against Jessica Earnest in the near future - do not try to play the intimidation card.

    Especially if you're a dude.

    One of Earnest's male counterparts attempted to do so recently at the Third Annual Chris Barnes Youth Classic, held in Irving, Texas, over Thanksgiving weekend.

    "He kept saying, 'I'm coming after you,'" Earnest recalled. "I just kept telling him to bring it on."

  • Vandals play well in defeat to rivals

    Sometimes, you just have to give credit where credit is due - even if that credit is being heaped upon a bitter rival.

    The Vandalia boys basketball team could not have played any harder than it did Friday night. The Vandals kept their opponents guessing by switching up defenses and did exactly what they wanted to do on the offensive end of the court.

    Still, it wasn't enough to upset a talented Greenville squad on its home court in a 57-44 loss.

  • Smith has perfect game for Blackburn

    It was a perfect performance from the field.

    Blackburn College's Ryan Smith, a Vandalia grad, scored 14 points in Blackburn's 76-53 loss to Fontbonne University recently. Smith hit 7-of-7 from the field. He also pulled down two rebounds in the contest. Smith also had eight points, three steals and two rebounds in Blackburn's 81-52 loss to Webster University.

  • Vandal wrestlers dominate on 'Senior Night'

    The timing of the Vandalia wrestling team's "Senior Night" was a bit unconventional.

    The results were not.

    The Vandals celebrated "Senior Night" in their patented dominating fashion, kicking off the Thursday evening's triangular with a surprisingly easy win over SCC rival Litchfield, 63-3, before easing by Class 2A Highland, 53-15.