Local News

  • School district lowers tax levy

    When the Vandalia School Board voted to put on the April 2019 ballot a sales tax increase vote, school district officials said that if the measure passed, the district would lower property taxes.
    In fact, they said that to show they were serious about that, they would approve a lower levy even before the April vote.
    Last week, they did just that.
    The board approved a tax levy with an aggregate total of $4,473,757, which is $87,292 lower than the previous levy of $4,561,050.

  • Judge wants Beccue murder trial to go in January

    A jury trial for a St. Peter man charged with two counts of first-degree murder is scheduled to begin in Jan. 14, and the presiding judge told prosecutors and Alexander Beccue’s attorney he would like to see the trial held at that time.
    During a pretrial hearing on Tuesday, Fayette County Resident Circuit Judge Don Sheafor told Fayette County State’s Attorney Joshua Morrison, Assistant State’s Attorney Brenda Mathis and Ed Deters, Beccue’s attorney, “I would really like it to go in January.”

  • Christmas Gala, Christmas Open House coming up at Vandalia Statehouse

    The annual Christmas Gala and Christmas Open House at the Vandalia Statehouse have been set for Nov. 30 and Dec. 8.
    The Christmas Gala, sponsored by the Vandalia Historical Society, is from 6-8:30 p.m. next Friday.
    The event includes hors d’oeuvres, desserts, drinks and live music. Cocktail attire is suggested.
    Tickets are $50 each, which includes this year’s edition of the Statehouse’s commemorative Christmas ornament.
    Advance tickets are available on a limited basis by emailing vandaliahistoricalsociety@yahoo.com.

  • ISP running NITE patrols

    Illinois State Police (ISP) District 12 Commander Capt. Cory Ristvedt said that the state police is conducting Nighttime Enforcement patrols in Fayette and Marion counties this month.
    NITE patrols allow the ISP to focus on preventing, detecting, and taking enforcement action in response to impaired driving and occupant restraint violations especially between the hours of 9 p.m. and 6 a.m.

  • Effingham man dies in accident

    An Effingham man who is a former resident of Ramsey died last Thursday from injuries sustained when a tree he was cutting down fell on him.
    Kristopher Hetzer, 39, was pronounced dead at about 1:30 p.m. last Friday by Fayette County Coroner Dave Harris.
    Harris said that the accident occurred east of Ramsey.

  • Calendar

    Wednesday, November 21

    ✔ A Christian Community Coffee Clatch is held from 9-10:30 a.m. at Northside Christian Church, 1845 W. Jackson St., Vandalia. It is open to all adults, with free coffee and pastries.
    ✔ Area schools will dismiss early for school improvement and will be closed on Thursday and Friday.

    Thursday, November 22


  • Grooming, child pornography case now is bench trial

    A jury trial for a Missouri man charged with possession of child pornography and traveling to meet a minor has been delayed because the defendant has changed his mind on who will determine his fate.

  • Small Business Saturday

    A free breakfast will kick off Small Business Saturday in Vandalia this weekend.

  • Plea nets 12 years for drug offense

    A Nevada man accepted a prison sentence of 12 years last Wednesday  upon pleading guilty to possession of a controlled substance.
    Judge Kim Koester accepted the plea agreement for Emigdio Penuelas-Medina, who pleaded guilty to possession of more than 200 grams of a substance containing fentanyl, a synthetic opioid.

  • Water discussions continue

    Now that Vandalia residents have voted down a proposed sales tax increase that would have helped fund a new water plant, the question is, how will the city come up with those funds.
    When Alderman Joel Rebbe posed that question at Monday’s city council meeting, Alderman Dorothy Crawford said, “Water bill and property taxes.
    “We don’t have a choice anymore,” Crawford said.
    Rebbe asked that question during a lengthy discussion on the amount of water processed by the city and the amount billed.