Today's News

  • Banks of the Okaw

    This week’s Mystery Banks Photo: This picture, taken in November 1947, shows four young people from the Vandalia and Shafter areas. The one on the left is a retired farmer from Shafter. The second from the left is a retired farmer and realtor from Vandalia. The third from the left is from Shafter and is the mother of six children. And the fourth from the left is from Vandalia and is the mother of three girls.

  • Lincoln left his mark on Vandalia

    It was late in the afternoon on Nov. 29, 1834, when the stagecoach from Springfield made its grand entrance into Vandalia with galloping horses and horns a blaring.

  • 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.

  • Multiplier is 1

    Fayette County has been issued a tentative property assessment equalization factor of 1.0, according to Brian Hamer, director of the Illinois Department of Revenue.
    The property assessment equalization factor, often called the “multiplier,” is the method used to achieve uniform property assessments among counties, as required by law. This equalization is particularly important because some of the state’s 6,600 local taxing districts overlap into two or more counties (e.g. school districts, junior college districts, fire protection districts).

  • Girl Scout cookie sales in January

    The 2012 Girl Scout Cookie Sale Program is right around the corner.
    Girl Scouts of Southern Illinois (GSSI) will kick off the cookie sale Jan. 6-8 during Cookie Caravan weekend.
    During Cookie Caravan, customers can purchase cookies directly from girls at various locations throughout the region.
    Traditional cookie order-taking will occur Jan. 6-21, with cookies to be delivered in mid-February. Customer demand for Girl Scout Cookies following delivery has been high historically, so additional Cookie Caravans will be held March 2-4 and 9-11.

  • News Briefs

    Unemployment at 9.8% in November

    Unemployment in Fayette County was at 9.8 percent in November, according to the Illinois Department of Employment Security.
    The IDES report shows that the November figure is lower than in November 2010, 10.6 percent.
    Unemployment in Effingham County dropped from 7.5 percent in November 2010 to 7 percent this November. Marion County's November rate was 11 percent, down from 11.3 percent in November of last year.

    Zumba classes in Patoka resume Jan. 3

  • Tony arrives in time to meet Sophia at Christmas

    Last week’s Fayette Faces featured Sophia, a little 5-year-old girl who is now in the worst stage of spinal muscular atrophy, and whose only wish was for a service dog to retrieve objects she dropped and to be her companion, a “buddy.” She asked for an orange dog, because that is her favorite color.
    Also featured was “Tony,” a golden retriever, a family pet that had lost his family and little girl due to circumstances that made them unable to properly care for him. They placed him in caring hands.

  • 14 counts filed against Vandalia man after crime spree

    Sixteen counts of criminal charges have been filed against a Vandalia man who eluded police for more than a day after a crime spree covering a wide area.
    Fayette County State’s Attorney Stephen Friedel filed charges against Kenneth J. Weldon, 30, 330 S. Coles St., Vandalia, on Friday, two days after he was taken into custody south of Mulberry Grove.
    Weldon appeared in court late last week, with his bond set at $300,000.
    The charges filed by Friedel’s office include the following allegations:

  • Riddle succeeding Cole as Statehouse superintendent

    For close to three decades, Mary Cole has been helping to keep alive Vandalia’s history as a former state capital and the birthplace of Abraham Lincoln’s political career. This week, her tenure in that role comes to an end.

  • Vandals 3-0 through first two days of own tourney

    The Vandals are 3-0 through the first two days of the Vandalia Holiday Tournament, and they had a showdown with Pana Wednesday night that decided who would represent Pool B in Thursday's championship game.

    The results of that game and the entire championship day schedule will be available at www.leaderunion.com by Thursday morning.

    In the first three games of the tournament, Vandalia rallied to beat Stew-Stras, 55-46, on Tuesday, while on Monday grinding out a win against St. Elmo, 48-43, and using a fast start to down Shelbyville, 57-37.

    Vandalia vs. Stew-Stras