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Editorials

  • Lincoln events are everywhere

    If you are a history buff, this coming weekend is tailor-made for you. Everywhere you look in Vandalia, something historic or Lincoln-connected is being celebrated.
    First, the third anniversary of the National Road Interpretive Center will be observed from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, with a special program at 4 p.m. If you haven't been to the center, take a few minutes and see all the information and artifacts that are available about the famous road that terminated in Vandalia.

  • Clymer, Ashdown worthy of awards

    As usual, the Vandalia Chamber of Commerce has identified two individuals worthy of recognition as it selected its 2012 Abe Award recipients. They were presented their awards last Thursday at the chamber’s annual banquet.
    Honored this year in the non-chamber-member category was retired Vandalia businessman Abe Clymer. For the chamber-member award, YMCA executive director John Ashdown was selected. Both have made significant contributions to the community and are deserving of the award.

  • Clarify TIF rules

    For years, Vandalia's Tax Increment Financing program has helped fund projects in the community that otherwise probably wouldn't have gotten done.
    And for the majority of those years, business owners have scratched their heads trying to determine the logic behind decisions about which projects were funded and how much they got.

  • Mabry honored for pioneering

    All her life, Laurie Mabry has been a pioneer.
    As a girl growing up in Vandalia, she pushed herself to blaze a path for girls to be able to compete in sports like their male counterparts.
    In college, she welcomed the opportunity to expand even further the competitive outlets available to her.
    But it was as a college coach and administrator that she really pushed the envelope for women. And she was a crucial part of the nationwide effort to institutionalize those gains for collegiate women athletes.

  • Make final push for KC funding

    Though the state has appropriated about $5.6 million for the construction of the second phase of the Kaskaskia College Vandalia Campus, those funds still have not been released.
    With Phase I of the campus now four years old, it’s time for the state to release those funds – which were originally appropriated for Phase I of the project but never released. As a result, the first phase was built with local funds that should’ve been matched by the state.

  • Volunteers needed at the Statehouse

    Last week in this space, we praised those individuals who have volunteered to assist the staff at the Vandalia Statehouse in the past.
    This week, we encourage other local residents to be a part of that volunteer team. In fact, it’s increasingly critical that the volunteer team grows.
    Statehouse Site Superintendent Mary Cole and Paul Imes retired at the end of 2011. Cole was replaced by Steve Riddle, and Imes wasn’t replaced.

  • Job well done by Cole, volunteers

    The bad news is that things are changing at the Vandalia Statehouse. The good news, however, is that things are changing at the Vandalia Statehouse.
    Bottom line, the solid foundation laid in the past by faithful employees and volunteers there will carry us into a future that – though not without challenges – holds much promise.

  • State must deal with economy

    As we prepare to launch into the new year, we typically take a brief look over our shoulder at the waning year and set our sights on better things for the coming 12 months.
    This year, however, one has to work harder than usual to muster much optimism.
    In Illinois – and even in Fayette County – the dark cloud of our state's dire fiscal condition colors the outlook of even the most optimistic among us.

  • Caring & Sharing keeps on giving

    Thirty-five years ago, a group of Fayette County Health Department employees banded together to make Christmas a little brighter for six local families.
    That special holiday program quickly grew into Fayette County Caring & Sharing, which has for several decades provided Christmas baskets for more than 400 less-fortunate families in the county.
    In its early years, all of those Christmas baskets were distributed at Mother of Dolors Catholic Church in Vandalia. Today, that church’s parish center is just one of a handful of distribution sites.

  • Blagojevich pleas too little, too late

    After years of playing with fire in the rough and tumble world of Chicago’s corrupt political machine, Rod Blagojevich finally got burned.
    Right up to the end, it appeared that he felt he could flash his boyish smile, crank up the bravado and walk away unscathed – just like he had from every other tight spot he’d been in. But last Wednesday, things changed.