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Editorials

  • Attend E911 hearing

    At the general election about a month from now, Fayette County residents will be asked for the third time to approve a telephone surcharge to fund emergency phone service. We’re hoping that the third time is a charm.

    We’ve given residents information prior to the first two votes on the issue, and we will be doing that again prior to the Nov. 4 election.

    But we’re hoping that residents also take the initiative to gather information on their own and ask questions.

  • Restore the funds

    The Illinois Senate on Tuesday passed a resolution that could restore funds to keep the doors open at 14 historic sites – including the Vandalia Statehouse – and 11 state parks in the state.

    The 40-15 Senate vote means that body joins the Illinois House in supporting restored funding for those sites. Tuesday's Senate bill would funnel more than $220 million toward parks, historic sites and social service programs.

    Now, it's Gov. Rod Blagojevich who stands in the way of keeping the sites open to the public.

  • Corn Day offers many activities

    As area farmers prepare for harvest, our community is preparing for this Saturday’s annual Corn Day celebration.

    Sponsored by Vandalia Main Street, the event features a variety of activities – some to celebrate the prominent role that corn plays in our area’s economy and some just for fun.

    The activities get under way at 7 a.m. with a community-wide yard sale promotion. (See the ad elsewhere in this issue of The Leader-Union for the addresses of more than 50 yard sales included in the event. Many also have ads in the classified section of today's paper.)

  • Congrats to new HOF members!

    Congratulations to the Vandalia Community High School wrestling teams from 1996-97 and 1997-98, which were inducted last Friday into the VCHS Sports Hall of Fame.

    Those two teams both compiled sterling records and went on to place fourth at the state team wrestling tournament.

    Also to be congratulated are VCHS homecoming royalty, Lexie Schukar and Wayne Stock, who were crowned queen and king at Saturday’s homecoming dance.

  • Safety is priority as harvest begins

    In normal years, area farmers would be well into the job of harvesting their crops by now. They’d be in the fields from dawn to dusk, stretching themselves and their equipment to the limit, and generally pushing the envelope in a profession that is one of the most dangerous around.

    But this is not a normal year.

  • House, Senate must reverse misguided cuts

    After a couple of weeks of feeling the sting of the public’s frustration, members of the Illinois House of Representatives this week have an opportunity to correct the misguided budget cuts mandated by Gov. Rod Blagojevich.

    As they gather in Springfield, state House members must come up with an alternative budget plan that makes more sense than the random cuts the governor required of state agency heads in late August. Then, they must convince their counterparts in the state Senate to follow suit.

  • State shoots self in the foot by closing sites

    Just when you think that things can't get any worse in our state capital...

    The Illinois Historic Preservation Agency, responding to budget cuts implemented by Gov. Rod Blagojevich, announced on Thursday the closure of 24 state historic sites and state parks. On that list is the Vandalia Statehouse.

    The news of those closures comes as a major blow to our state, which is getting ready to celebrate the 200th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln's birthday, as well as to our community.

  • Both sides win

    The agreement inked last week between the Vandalia Board of Education and the Vandalia Unit Teachers' Association marks a successful conclusion to an important negotiation process.

  • Party-lines votes not always the best

    It's not been unusual for the Fayette County Board to have tie votes on various matters, such as appointments, with board members voting along party lines. The current board chairman, Steve Knebel, said he would like to see that pattern change.

    Prior to the boards appointment of Mary Sue Ruot as the circuit clerk through the end of November, Knebel noted that he was going against the recommendation of numerous fellow Republicans in recommending Ruot.

    I know how its been done in the past. I know a lot of things have gone politically. I dont agree with that, Knebel said.

  • Neighbors lend a hand in Bluff City cleanup

    The Good Samaritans began appearing shortly after the freight-train noise of last Tuesdays storm headed for the county line. And they didn't leave until the cleanup was complete.

    That very localized, but potent, storm roared through Vandalia, hit Bluff City with a vengeance and moved on to the east. In its wake, it left a path of downed trees and thankfully generally minor damage to houses.