Today's News

  • Helm, Taylor receive Abe Awards

    Two local residents who have used different avenues to reach out to numerous other people in this area were recognized last Thursday by the Vandalia Chamber of Commerce.

    Saundra Helm, a resident of Vandalia since the mid-1970s, and Ed Taylor Jr., a lifetime resident of the community, each received an Abe Award at the chambers annual banquet at the American Legion Home in Vandalia.

  • Two county residents go to prison for meth

    Two Fayette County residents have been given lengthy prison terms after being convicted of drug offenses in federal court.

    Randy G. Massey, acting U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Illinois, announced at the end of last week that Randy A. Brown and Jackie G. Richards were sentenced for their roles in a drug conspiracy in Fayette, Clinton and Madison counties from may 2004 through November 2006.

  • Election is Tuesday

    While all Fayette County residents will be helping to select the presidential candidates in November, people in three Fayette County Board districts will be picking nominees for the general election.

    The three county board contests are Districts 2, 4 and 5.

    In District 2, incumbent Democrat John C. Daniels Jr. is being challenged by Jon A. Phillips. There is no Republican candidate in District 2 at this time.

  • Helm, Taylor receive Abe Awards

    Saundra Helm and Ed Taylor Jr. were recognized on Thursday night for their service to the community.

    Helm and Taylor are the 2008 recipients of Abe Awards.

    For a story listing their contributions to the community, see Thursdays issue of The Leader-Union.

  • Route 51 hearings need public input

    Though we said it last week, it bears repeating once again that two important hearings regarding the future of U.S. Route 51 will be held this Thursday.

    These hearings will allow area residents to hear information from Illinois Department of Transportation officials and then to share their opinions about the options available for the four-lane expansion of U.S. Route 51 in Fayette County.

    The first will be from 1-4 p.m. in the multi-purpose room at the Kaskaskia College Vandalia Campus. The second will follow from 5:30-8 p.m. at Ramsey High School.

  • Use new school funding wisely

    Though its been passed by legislators and signed by the governor, a bill authorizing an increase in state aid to Illinois school districts has yet to produce any increased cash in local districts coffers.

    But, thankfully, that aid is coming.

    When it arrives, the $400 per student per year hike will represent the first increase in school funding since 1985. For the Vandalia district, that will mean an additional $250,000 to $300,000 per year to educate our children. Our per-pupil annual funding now stands at $5,734.

  • L-U clipping identifies musicians on postcard

    It had been quite a while since I had logged onto eBay, the Web site where you can buy or sell just about anything.

    I collect Vandalia postcards, and one evening as I went on line, I decided to see what Vandalia items eBay had to offer.

    About half way down the list was a postcard of the "Vandalia Band." Knowing this could be Vandalia, Ohio, or Indiana, I was pleasantly surprised to see it for Vandalia, Ill., and the seller had dated it at 1905.

    The leader of the band, who was seated and holding a baton, looked familiar, although I couldnt put a name to his face.

  • City OKs Lincoln storyboards

    The citys plans for streetscape improvements are on hold for the time being, but its efforts to educate local residents and tourists on Vandalias history are not.

    Action taken by the Vandalia City Council Monday paves the way for the creation and installation of Abraham Lincoln storyboards by this summer.

    The council approved an agreement with the Illinois Department of Transportation that allows the city to use federal TEA-21 grant funds, which are funneled through IDOT, for eight of the citys 10 storyboards.

  • EDC committee wants to survey residents

    While its interested in the findings of a commercial recruitment firm hired by the city, a Vandalia Economic Development Commission committee also wants the thoughts of another group as it works to lure new business to town.

    Dale Timmermann, chairman of the EDCs commercial recruitment committee, said at last weeks commission meeting that the committee wants to go through the recommendations of The Buxton Co.

    But the committee also, Timmermann said, would like to do some surveys. One of the groups that we lack feedback from is the community itself.

  • Fayette Water moving forward with Vandalia area expansion

    Fayette Water Co. hopes to complete later this year an expansion project that would provide water for people living north and northwest of Vandalia.

    The rural water group, which wanted to have between 150 and 200 households signed up for that expansion project, had 175 households on board at the start of last week.

    One of the biggest reasons for holding this meeting is because of the people who are still thinking about signing up, Fayette Water Manager and Board Treasurer Randy Wolf said prior to a public meeting last Monday at First Church of God in Vandalia.