LOCAL NEWS

Local News

March 17, 2015

 

(OLNEY)  As a strong cold front drops southward across the Midwest, cooler air with near normal temps will be in place for the next several days – meanwhile, a brewing storm system will move in with our next rain chance tomorrow night and thru the day on Thursday, but no heavy amounts are expected – then we’re back to a dry sky for the upcoming weekend although a little cooler on Sunday – stay tuned for updates.

 

(NEWTON)  Some Illinois lawmakers want to limit video gambling machines in the state – currently there are over 19,000 machines located throughout the state at various types of stores and businesses, all after the gaming machines were legalized six years ago in 2009 – the lawmakers want to limit which establishments can have the video gaming machines, which mostly are found at convenience gas stations and golf courses.

 

(OLNEY)  A one-time employee in the Williamson County Court Clerk’s Office accused of stealing has been sentenced – prosecutors say Cheryl Cundiff, along with two other defendants, stole at least $80,000 from the Clerk’s Office by taking cash payments from people bonding out of jail – sentenced to four years of probation, the three crooks must repay the money to the county over the span of their probation.

 

(OLNEY)  A decision is expected by the end of the week on where the Illinois High School Association will hold the Boys State Basketball Tournaments in the future – Peoria and Champaign-Urbana have both put in bids for all four classes while Hoffman Estates only wants the 3A/4A Tournaments – Peoria has been the home site since 1996, however the most popular site was in Champaign-Urbana all the years up to 1995.

 

(NEWTON)  The Jasper County School Board met last night in regular session – the Board  :  agreed to renew the Athletic Training Services contract with Richland Memorial Hospital  :  approved the South East Purchasing Cooperative agreement with the $100 fee  :  approved the Childcare Occupations Course for the NCHS Family & Consumer Science Department  :  noted the Board’s Organizational Meeting will be April 27th after the April 7th School Board election  :  agreed to ratify a previous suspension and agreed to expel a student for the rest of this school year  :  discussed possible budget reductions for the 2015-2016 school year  :  then made various personnel moves and cuts as the result of budget reductions for the next school year after a 97-minute closed session with all the dismissals effective at the end of this school year – on a 5 to 1 vote, approved the honorable dismissal of four teachers (Michelle Probst, Stephanie Klingler, Jamie Mahaffey, and Mallory Weber) – approved the honorable dismissal of one other (Jordan Michels) – approved a reduction in teaching responsibilities for one (Christina Wise) – agreed to discontinue six extra duty / stipend assignments (Assistant Football Coach & Assistant Track Coach Brock Tarr, Assistant Girls Tennis Coach Sandy Webb, NCHS Assistant Scholastic Bowl Coach Kevin Volk, NCHS Assistant Boys Basketball Coach Brian Kusnerick, Letterman’s Club Sponsor Jason Fulton, and 5th/6th Grade Basketball Coach Blake Davidson) – agreed that two would be reassigned next year (Tina Shipman from Head JCJH Volleyball Coach to JCJH Assistant Volleyball Coach and Sarah Will from Head JCJH Girls Track Coach to Assistant JCJH Track Coach) – agreed to discontinue extra duty for one support staff employee (5th/6th Grade Cheerleading Sponsor Jeanie Weddell) – agreed to discontinue extra-curricular assignments for those not employed by the District (Assistant Boys Tennis Coach Eric Schmidt, 5th/6th Grade Volleyball Coach Michelle Schafer, & Letterwoman’s Club Sponsor Jackie Schackmann) – agreed to dismiss ten aides (Angie Probst, Emily Myers, Lynn Slough, Kristi Finley, Becky Oldham, Gine Niemerg, Joni Millman, Kimberlin Wallace, Gayle Glumac, and Darla Mahaffey) – agreed to dismiss two cooks (Vellena Schmidt & Gina Correll) – agreed to dismiss three chaperones (Laura Miller, Karen Bolander, & Marcea Maxon) – agreed to dismiss three secretaries (Sheryl Brinson, Amy Frohning, & LeAnn Bradley) – agreed to dismiss three custodians (Lee Bergbower, Carol Weiscope, & Jackie Menke) – agreed to dismiss one other employee (Tara Gallion) – agreed to reduce the responsibilities for one educational support staff employee (Darla Johnson)  :  the Board did approve the District’s Administrative Assignments for the 2015-2016 school year – NCHS Principal Beth Probst – JCJH Principal / Athletic Director / Assistant Superintendent Travis Wyatt – Newton Elementary Principal Craig Carr – Ste. Marie Principal / District Curriculum Director Kathy Johnson – Special Needs Administrator Kim Kessler – and part-time Newton Elementary Assistant Principal Amy Tarr  :  the next regular meeting for the Jasper County School Board is Monday, April 20th.

 

(OLNEY)  A reminder to area voters that Absentee Voting for the April 7th Consolidated Election is now being conducted in County Clerk offices around the state (at the Richland County Courthouse in Olney or the Jasper County Office Building in Newton) – for those who’ll be out of their home county on election day and wish to vote, Absentee Voting is available now thru April 6th at their County Clerk’s office – no appointment is needed – to Absentee Vote by mail, call the County Clerk’s office to request an application – the signed application must be returned to the Clerk’s office before a ballot can be mailed – the last day for the Clerk’s office to receive an application for a ballot is March 30th, one week from next Monday – call or stop by your Clerk’s office for details – open Monday thru Friday, from 8:00 to 4:00, each day.

 

(NEWTON)  During this St. Patrick’s Day 2015, folks are reminded to celebrate wisely – the Illinois State Police, IDOT, and local law enforcement agencies are out in extra force looking for those driving impaired by alcohol and/or drugs – those planning to celebrate in public today or tonight should have designated drivers or other alternate ways of getting home – the extra patrols continue from the weekend thru tonight.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Farm Bureau is sponsoring a Farmer’s Share Breakfast this Saturday morning from 7:30 to 10:00 at the Olney City Park Community Building – since the USDA has determined that farmers & ranchers receive only 15.9 cents for every food dollar, and since every food cost increase does not translate into a higher portion of income for farmers, the Farmer’s Share Breakfast will represent the actual cost of the breakfast, at only 25 cents each – the tickets are currently on sale at the Richland County Farm Bureau office or available at the door, however supplies are limited to the first 300 tickets purchased – for details or more information, call or stop by the Farm Bureau office in Olney (393-4116).

 

(NEWTON)  The Jasper County Extension will help co-sponsor another Department of Natural Resources hunter safety course this weekend – recommended for those age 10 & older, the 10-hour course includes instruction in wildlife management, firearms safety, hunter ethics, first aid, and hunting regulations – the safety course will start this Friday night, March 20th, from 6:00 to 9:00, and continue Saturday from 8:30 to 4:00, all at the Latona Christian Church, south of Wheeler – space is limited, so call to sign up as soon as possible – reservations are required in advance by calling the Jasper County Extension at 618-783-2521 or register online on the Jasper County Extension website at www.web.extension.illinois.edu/cefj/.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The Newton Community High School Chorus presents the musical “Mary Poppins” next week in the NCHS Auditorium – the performances are scheduled for next Thursday night thru Sunday afternoon, March 26th thru 29th – tickets are currently available at the High School office in Newton – all ages are invited


    Tickets for the spring production of “Mary Poppins” at Olney Central College are on sale from 10:00 to 2:00 today and each weekday at the OCC ticket booth in the lobby of the Dr. John D. Stull Performing Arts Center at Olney Central College – the Theatre’s first of seven performances will be this coming Friday night


    The Claremont Community Center will have its carry-out chowder this Saturday with serving from 11:00 until sold out – it’s bulk chowder at $15 per gallon, plus homemade pies also for sale – no glass containers


    The East Fork Bassmasters will be serving their famous “fish sandwiches” this Friday at the Olney IGA – starting at 11:00, the serving will continue until they’re sold out – so get their early this Friday


    TrustBank in Olney will host a special program about Social Security this Thursday evening at 5:30 at the Chamber of Commerce Office in Olney – to RSVP, call the RCM Branch at 618-395-4311


    The RMH Auxiliary will finish up its Longaberger Fundraiser this morning from 8:00 to 10:00 in the Heim Room – all proceeds go to Auxiliary projects at Richland Memorial Hospital in Olney

 

 

 

March 16, 2015

 

(OLNEY)  There will be an ample amount of sunshine today with warmer air moving in as well over the Midwest – however, an approaching cold front will sweep thru the area tonight, and while we stay dry, the temperatures though will return to near normal for midweek – another weather disturbance will then bring us a chance of rain Wednesday night thru Thursday – then a dry weekend coming up – listen for updates.

 

(NEWTON)  Area rivers are mostly still bank full as the rural flooding will continue this week – the list includes the Wabash, the Embarras, the Little Wabash, and the Fox Rivers, plus many of their tributaries as well – everyone’s reminded to stay out of those flooded backwaters, especially on area and regional roads.

 

(OLNEY)  Those who still don’t have health insurance in Illinois can fix that problem during a special enrollment period that starts this week – the window goes from now to April 30th, according to officials with “Get Covered Illinois” – to qualify, consumers need at attest that they paid the tax penalty for being uninsured when they filed their 2015 taxes – for more details, go online at www.getcoveredillinois.gov.

 

(NEWTON)  Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner is proposing to raise the eligibility requirements for the state’s Early Intervention Program – currently, the state funds children who are 30% developmentally delayed, and the Governor wants to drop funding to the 50% mark – officials say the move could mean about half of the children taking part in the program, more than 10,000 youngsters altogether, would be knocked off the list.

 

(OLNEY)  The Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services is under the gun – it’s been found that over $12 million was recently paid to thousands of deceased Medicaid recipients in Illinois – a recent 2013 audit found the huge error, although according to a press release from the IDHFS, the list of mistakes are blamed on delays in information transfer and on the department’s outdated computer system.

 

(OLNEY)  Back here at home – State Representative David Reis says the clock is ticking on the fiscal year 2015 budget crisis situation – the decision by the General Assembly and Illinois’ former Governor to pass and sign the previous unbalanced state budget continues to endanger many Illinois residents – the list includes those paid from, or dependent on, the budget lines where not enough money was set aside to fully fund them thru the end of the fiscal year on June 30th – plus, the state’s slow economic growth continues to be a concern, especially with the state’s budget deficit looming ever bigger day after day – Representative Reis continues to urge his fellow lawmakers of action that’s needed now, not later, to help the situation.

 

(NEWTON)  At last Thursday’s special meeting in Newton, the Jasper County School Board heard from several people in regards to the potential budget reductions within the Jasper County School District – the Board reviewed information that the District will have a negative fund balance at the end of this month of March, with an $1.2 million deficit in operational expenditures, and as a result, various budget reductions are being recommended – the Board took no other action after a nearly 2 hour closed session to discuss personnel, including the appointment, employment, compensation, discipline, performance, or dismissal of specific employees – the Jasper County School Board will have its regular monthly meeting at 6:30 tonight in Newton – a public hearing will be held to start tonight’s meeting in regards to the potential honorable dismissal of professional educator licenses (“PEL”) employees – tonight’s meeting is open to the public.

 

(OLNEY)  One regional medical marijuana cultivation center in downstate Illinois is hiring, while another downstate facility is being stopped from construction – the Ataraxia Company, based in Albion, has posted an application for employment on its website, looking to hire up to 30 employees to staff a planned 50,000 square foot facility – in fact, a Job Fair is scheduled for April 1st to help find workers – meanwhile, a Madison County judge has issued a temporary restraining order against the Progressive Treatment Solutions Farm facility in East St. Louis, saying the State Ag Department violated its rules in issuing the license – on another note, there’s still no decision on a cultivation center to be awarded to a site among the area counties within State Police District 12, which includes Richland, Jasper, Lawrence, Crawford, Clay, and 5 others.

 

(NEWTON)  The Illinois Treasurer’s office is set to start its Online Auction for Unclaimed Property – beginning at 10:00 this morning, the auction will continue until 10:00 on Friday morning, March 20th – those interested must go online to register to become an active bidder, plus a full list of the auction items are on the website – logon at www.illinoistreasurer.gov and click on the Unclaimed Property Auction link.

 

(OLNEY)  Most all roads in Richland County are still under a weight limit restriction until further notice – with the exception of the designated truck route between Noble and Wakefield, all Richland County maintained roads are under a 10 ton weight limit – plus most all township roads are still under a 5 ton or 8 ton weight limit as well – motorists must observe all weight limit signs posted on each respective road – if any questions, contact the Richland County Highway Department or the respective Road Commissioner.

 

(OLNEY)  Area Soil and Water Conservation District offices are taking orders for their spring fish and tree sales – both the Richland County and Clay County offices in Olney and Louisville respectively are taking orders for various types of fish thru the rest of this week, until Friday, March 20th – however, it’s too late to order grass carp – also, orders for various types of trees will be accepted thru the rest of this month, ending on March 31st, two weeks from tomorrow – call or stop by either office during regular office hours.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Farm Bureau Young Leaders will host a “new member” meeting tonight, starting at 6:30 – the Young Leaders group is for anyone age 18 to 35 who has an interest in making a positive impact on agriculture and the community – a meal will also be served for those in attendance – for the meeting location and details, call the Farm Bureau Office in Olney this morning at 618-393-4116.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The Newton Community High School Chorus presents the musical “Mary Poppins” next week in the NCHS Auditorium – the performances are scheduled for next Thursday night thru Sunday afternoon, March 26th thru 29th – tickets are currently available at the High School office in Newton – all ages are invited


    The Noble/Wakefield Volunteer Firemen will host their “ham & bean feed” this Saturday at the Lion’s Club Building in Noble, with serving from 11:00 to 2:00 – they’ll also be serving pork burgers, hamburgers, vegetable soup, & more – the cost is by donations at the door – fundraising raffle tickets also for sale – all proceeds go towards the cost of purchasing new equipment and additional training for the firemen


    Tickets for the spring production of “Mary Poppins” at Olney Central College are on sale from 10:00 to 2:00 today and each weekday at the OCC ticket booth in the lobby of the Dr. John D. Stull Performing Arts Center at Olney Central College – the Theatre’s first of seven performances will be this coming Friday night


    The RMH Auxiliary is having a Longaberger Fundraiser today & tomorrow in the Heim Room – that’s from 8:00 to 4:00 today and tomorrow morning from 8:00 to 10:00 – all proceeds go to Auxiliary projects at Richland Memorial Hospital in Olney – all are encouraged to stop by and help out with a purchase


    The next area blood drive is today at the Noble First Christian Church, just off of U.S. Route 50 – that’s this afternoon from 2:00 to 6:00, with all blood types and blood platelets in need – all donors are welcome

 

 

 

March 14, 2015

 

(OLNEY)  As a low pressure system tracks across  the Ohio River Valley today, a few more showers will hang around until some sunshine returns later on – a high pressure ridge will build into the Midwest by tomorrow, with dry and mild weather conditions on tap tomorrow and Monday – then a dry cold front will move thru with some cooler air returning for St. Patrick’s Day, on Tuesday – listen for weather updates.

 

(OLNEY)  While the Flood Watch for our area was cancelled late last night, our regional rainfall amounts for the past 36 hours are pretty general – here at the WVLN-WSEI NWS Weather Station at the south edge of Olney, we recorded a little over 2 and a quarter inches up until 6:00 this morning for the entire rain event – other area amounts averaged anywhere from 1 inch to nearly 3 inches of rain in a few locations – flooding will continue to be a problem along the Wabash, Embarras, Little Wabash, and Fox River basins over the next several days – everyone’s reminded to stay out of those backwaters, whether on roads or elsewhere.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – park projects across the state are in jeopardy following a recent freeze on state funding – Governor Bruce Rauner indefinitely suspended grants for all park district construction projects this past Thursday because of an estimated $1.6 billion budget deficit – officials say it’s not known as of yet how much federal and other independent grant money is at stake involving the statewide park grants.

 

(OLNEY)  The Illinois Department of Revenue is reminding taxpayers to go electronic this year if possible – IDOR officials remind taxpayers that all electronic filing methods are still available for filing 2014 Form IL-1040, including the FREE! Option MyTax Illinois – plus if any questions, check the IDOR’s website online – the tax filing deadline is fast approaching on April 15th – for more, logon at www.tax.illinois.gov.

 

(OLNEY)  Most all roads in Richland County are under a weight limit restriction until further notice – with the exception of the designated truck route between Noble and Wakefield, all Richland County maintained roads are under a 10 ton weight limit – plus most all township roads are under a 5 ton or 8 ton weight limit as well – motorists must observe all weight limit signs posted on each respective road – for more details or information, contact the Richland County Highway Department or the respective Road Commissioner.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Farm Bureau Young Leaders will host a “new member” meeting this coming Monday evening, starting at 6:30 – the Young Leaders group is for anyone age 18 to 35 who has an interest in making a positive impact on agriculture and the community – this is an informational meeting for those that wish to learn more about what the Young Leaders Committee is all about – a meal will be served – for the meeting location and details, call the Farm Bureau Office in Olney at 393-4116 Monday morning.

 

(NEWTON)  All area blood donors and/or first-time donors are urged to get out and give blood at their next opportunity, especially with all blood types & blood platelets in special need – here’s the next upcoming blood drive  : today at Potter’s House Ministry in Newton from 11:00 to 3:00 : tomorrow morning at the St. Joseph Community Club in Stringtown from 7:30 to 11:30 : for more, go to www.redcrossblood.org.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The East Richland High School Choir will be in concert tomorrow afternoon in the Sliva Auditorium at ERHS, beginning at 3:00 – it’s free admission and all are invited out to support the ERHS Choir


      The St. Thomas School “Sounds of Swing” fundraiser is tonight at the Parish Center in Newton – doors open at 5:30, the meal at 6:00, and music from 7:00 to 9:00 – tickets on sale at Peoples State Bank locations


     The First Presbyterian Church in Olney has its St. Patrick’s Dinner tonight – the corned beef & cabbage meal will be served from 5:00 to 7:30, plus hot dogs for children – bulk sales and carry-outs available


    The West Salem Masonic Lodge #866 has a fundraising Fish Dinner & Auction this evening at the West Salem Community Center, with serving from 5:00 until sold out – the silent auction ends at 7:00 – freewill donations taken at the door – proceeds to Rodger & Mary Campbell to help with medical expenses


    The St. Joseph Boosters have their “pasta dinner” this evening in the St. Joseph cafeteria with serving from 4:30 to 7:00 – carry-outs available with tickets at the door – proceeds to support music & athletics

 

 

 

March 13, 2015

 

(OLNEY)  A low pressure system will continue to track northeast across the Midwest today thru tonight, bringing plenty of rain that should end by late Saturday morning – the warm weather hangs around thru the first of next week, then some cooler air for next Tuesday and the rest of next week – listen for updates.

 

(OLNEY)  The National Weather Service has a Flood Watch for Richland, Jasper, & surrounding counties now thru Saturday morning – with moderate to heavy rainfall expected for areas between Interstates 70 and 64, anywhere from 1 to 3 inches are possible with the highest amounts along and south of  Route 50 – with the Little Wabash, the Fox, and the Embarras Rivers already bank full, the new rain will add to the flooding problem – those living and traveling in areas prone to flooding should take precautions and remember, stay out of those backwaters for whatever reason – the flood conditions will hang around thru most of next week.

 

(NEWTON)  The state’s unemployment rate is down slightly – the Illinois Department of Employment Security says the jobless rate dropped a tenth-of-a-percent in January to 6.1 percent – the national rate for January came in at 5.7 percent – we’ll look at the area county numbers coming up later next week.

 

(OLNEY)  Commemorative coins, jewelry, comic books, and much more are among thousands of items being offered for the online auction hosted by the Illinois Treasurer’s Unclaimed Property Division – the online unclaimed property auction is set to start next Monday morning at 10:00, continuing each day thru next Friday – those interested can preview items and register to bid online at www.illinoistreasurer.gov.

 

(NEWTON)  Leading up to next Tuesday’s St. Patrick's Day, those planning to celebrate in public are reminded to make arrangements ahead of time for designated drivers or other alternate ways of getting home if alcohol’s involved – the Illinois State Police and IDOT are teaming up with nearly 200 local law enforcement agencies now thru St. Patrick's Day with extra patrols, looking for those driving impaired.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Board met last night in regular session in Olney – the Board  :  approved the county claims for the month of February worth $106,561 – over a third of the February expenditures was the single purchase of property for animal control at $40,000  :  approved the $5,000 payment to the City of Olney for assistance in applying for a new Enterprise Zone  :  approved the low bids submitted for rock and gravel for road maintenance in Richland County and its townships  :  approved the waiver of performance bond for the St. Joseph Community Club in Stringtown  :  approved a resolution of agreement for federal grant monies to help with the replacement cost of the County Road Bridge just north of Wynoose  :  heard an update from the Public Building Commission, noting that the final plans for courthouse improvements will be in place by July 1st  :  agreed to get more information about an ID Maker/Printer to improve employee identification  :  agreed to look for grant funds for the possible purchase of fencing for the new animal control property  :  approved the appointment of John Benton to the Olney Township Fire District, replacing Ray Steber, who resigned his position  :  approved two appointments to the Richland County Housing Authority – the reappointment of Bridgett Kibler and the appointment of Ed Zuber to replace James Coleman  :  and the Board took no other action after a closed session to discuss personnel and negotiations  :  the Richland County Board’s next regular monthly meeting will be April 9th.

 

(NEWTON)  The Jasper County Board met last night in Newton – the Board  :  heard from several folks in support of County Engineer Dick Patterson and after an hour long closed session approved a resolution to re-appoint Patterson as Jasper County Engineer on an 11 to 1 vote  :  on a 10 to 2 vote, a second resolution to re-appoint Dick Patterson as County Engineer passed with a change of wording in the contract  :  also on a 10 to 2 vote, the County Engineer’s salary was approved  :  in other business – agreed to replace 3 heart monitors for the Ambulance Service with the total cost at $86,418 which includes $18,000 off for trade-in units  :  agreed to finance the purchase of two bat-wing mowers for the Highway Department at $20,250 per year for three years  :  agreed to bury needed cables from the Courthouse to County Jail with the cost at $10,494  :  agreed to implement a hiring freeze for all County Departments  :  approved the Dundas / West Liberty Sewer ordinance as presented  :  heard a “thank you” from several 4-H’ers for the County’s support in the past  :  and approved an ordinance to allow home baking for not-for-profit groups in Jasper County  :  the Jasper County Board’s next regular monthly meeting will be Thursday, April 9th, at 7:30, in Newton.

 

(OLNEY)  The State Farm Service Agency is urging statewide farmers who want to purchase coverage thru the Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP) to do so before the March 15th sales closing date for spring and summer planted NAP crops – eligible farmers have until the end of this week, today, to file applications & pay service fees by the March 15th deadline – for more, contact your County FSA office.

 

(NEWTON)  The Jasper County Extension will help co-sponsor another Department of Natural Resources hunter safety course later this month – recommended for those age 10 & older, the 10-hour course includes instruction in wildlife management, firearms safety, hunter ethics, game identification, first aid, survival techniques, and hunting regulations – the safety course is scheduled to start a week from tonight, March 20th, from 6:00 to 9:00, and thru the day the following Saturday, March 21st, from 8:30 to 4:00 – all to be hosted by the Latona Christian Church, south of Wheeler – space is limited, so call to sign up as soon as possible – reservations are required in advance by calling the Jasper County Extension at 618-783-2521 or register online on the Jasper County Extension website at www.web.extension.illinois.edu/cefj/.

 

(OLNEY)  Curves International, Inc., is continuing with it’s nationwide 2015 Curves “Food Drive” now thru Saturday, March 21st, a week from tomorrow at participating Curves Centers across the U.S. & Canada – Curves is inviting both non-members and members to take part in the “Food Drive” by bringing in a bag of non-perishable food or a monetary contribution of at least $30 to be donated to a local community food bank – plus, all new members who make a food or monetary donation will receive a $0 enrollment fee when joining Curves – locally, folks can stop by Curves of Olney or go online at www.Curves.com.

 

(NEWTON)  All area blood donors and/or first-time donors are urged to get out and give blood at their next opportunity, especially with all blood types & blood platelets in special need – here’s the next upcoming blood drive  : tomorrow at Potter’s House Ministry in Newton from 11:00 to 3:00 : Sunday morning at the St. Joseph Community Club in Stringtown from 7:30 to 11:30 : for more, go to www.redcrossblood.org.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The East Richland High School Choir will be in concert this Sunday afternoon in the Sliva Auditorium, beginning at 3:00 – it’s free admission and all are invited out to support the ERHS Choir


      The St. Thomas School “Sounds of Swing” fundraiser is tomorrow evening at the Parish Center in Newton – doors open at 5:30, with the meal at 6:00, followed by music from 7:00 to 9:00 – the $17 tickets are on sale at Personal Service Reality, Peoples State Bank locations, and the St. Thomas School


     The First Presbyterian Church in Olney has its annual St. Patrick’s Dinner tomorrow night – the corned beef & cabbage meal, including hot dogs for children, will be served from 5:00 to 7:30 with tickets on sale at the door – bulk and carry-outs available – proceeds to “Build Community of Richland County”


    The West Salem Masonic Lodge #866 has a fundraising Fish Dinner & Auction tomorrow evening at the West Salem Community Center, with serving from 5:00 until sold out – the silent auction ends at 7:00 – freewill donations taken at the door – proceeds to Rodger & Mary Campbell to help with medical expenses


    The St. Joseph Boosters have their annual “pasta dinner” featuring the Trupiano family’s famous sauce tomorrow evening in the St. Joseph cafeteria with serving from 4:30 to 7:00 – carry-outs available with tickets at the door – all proceeds to support the music & athletic programs at the St. Joseph School in Olney


    The Trinity Lutheran Church at the east edge of Olney will host a fundraising Country Rhodes fish fry and silent auction this Friday evening with serving from 4:00 to 7:00 – the public can eat-in or drive thru with tickets at the church or in advance at local banks or at the church – proceeds to benefit Fall Kids Mall of Richland County, Build Community of Richland County, and Big Brothers Big Sisters – all are invited


    The ERHS After Prom Committee will be selling 50/50 tickets and hosting a bake sale offering speciality cakes and pies this Friday night during the Olney VFW’s Taco Night – the serving runs from 5:30 to 7:00, or until sold out – the cakes and pies will be sold  whole or by the slice – all proceeds to benefit the 2015 After Prom, providing the youth of Richland County with safe prom night activities

 

 

 

March 12, 2015

 

(OLNEY)  With more patchy fog in our area this morning, we’ll eventually see another sunny day on this Thursday, although another low pressure system is moving towards the Ohio River Valley – this system will bring us more rain chances late tonight, thru the day tomorrow, and now even thru the day Saturday, before ending Saturday night – we’ll dry off  Sunday and stay dry the first part of next week – listen for updates.

 

(OLNEY)  With a flood advisory already in effect for the Little Wabash River from Louisville down to Mt. Erie on south to Golden Gate and Carmi, the approaching storm system is expected to bring rather heavy amounts of rain – the National Weather Service is calling for 1 to 3 inches of rain for areas along and south of Interstate 70, most of which will fall in the 36-hour period late tonight into Saturday morning – already wet soils from the recent snow melt will enhance the threat for localized flooding – all motorists or those in areas that are common to flooding are urged to stay away from roads or areas covered by the backwaters.

 

(NEWTON)  Hundreds of protesters showed their dismay with the Governor’s proposed budget yesterday in Springfield – in fact, dozens of the protesters were escorted from the State House gallery, although none of those that chanted, sang, and held banners were arrested – the protesters say the proposed cuts for social services, child care, and Medicaid would especially affect low-income families throughout the state.

 

(OLNEY)  A new analysis shows that five of the state’s correctional centers do not have enough money to pay their employees for the rest of the fiscal year, which ends June 30th – the numbers reveal the budget issues could affect the paychecks of nearly 5,000 prison workers – the correctional facilities with the budget troubles includes those near Vandalia, Taylorville, Jacksonville, Mt. Sterling, and in Lawrence County.

 

(NEWTON)  The numbers are astounding – the National World War II Museum in New Orleans reports the United States is currently losing approximately 492 World War II Veterans every day, that’s one every three minutes in America – of the over 16 million Americans that served in World War II, the numbers have dropped from nearly 6 million in the year 2000 to now some 855,000 as of today – the estimated number in Illinois is at 29,889 – to learn more, check out the Museum’s website online at www.nnwwiim.org.

 

(OLNEY)  Miss Illinois County Fair Queen Sadie Gassmann of Olney is spending her time during spring break to visit with area groups and organizations, thanking them for their support over the past several months – crowned as 2014 Miss Richland County Fair Queen last July, the 20 year old graduate of East Richland High School has spent the past several weeks preparing for a busy summer, when she will be spending time attending selected county fairs, plus Illinois’ two State Fairs in Springfield and Du Quoin – Gassmann was introduced in the State House of Representatives during Legislative Day at the State Capitol in Springfield last week – before she returns to her Elementary Education classes at SIU Edwardsville next week, we’ll be talking with Miss Illinois County Fair Queen Sadie Gassmann tomorrow morning on WSEI.

 

(NEWTON)  Area residents are reminded to make sure they vote in the upcoming April 7th Consolidated Election – County Clerk’s offices are open from 8:00 to 4:00 each weekday, Monday thru Friday, now conducting Absentee Voting with no appointments necessary – folks can stop by and vote in-person or call and request an application for an Absentee ballot thru the mail – while the final day for ballots to be mailed out is March 30th, two weeks from next Monday, the last day to vote Absentee in-person is Monday, April 6th – also, Grace Period Voting is underway for qualified voters who failed to register or failed to change their address before the close of registration earlier this week – these folks can go to their County Clerk’s office, register to vote, and then cast their votes at that time – if questions, call your County Clerk’s office.

 

(OLNEY)  The State Farm Service Agency is urging statewide farmers who want to purchase coverage thru the Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP) to do so before the March 15th sales closing date for spring and summer planted NAP crops – eligible farmers have until the end of this week, tomorrow, to file applications & pay service fees by the March 15th deadline – for more, contact your County FSA office.

 

(OLNEY)  A few reminders from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources  :  over the counter sales of county permits for the Spring Youth Wild Turkey Season continues – the Southern Zone Season for the counties of Crawford, Jasper, Effingham, Fayette, Richland, and all others south is March 28th and 29th – the Northern Zone Season for the counties of Clark, Cumberland, Shelby, Coles and all others north is April 4th and 5th  :  it’s another Super Saturday this weekend at the Illinois State Museum from 11:00 to 3:00 – ideal for children ages 3 to 8, this Saturday explore the lives of women who left their mark on natural art, science, and anthropology  :  get ready for the 2015 Spring Trout Fishing Season in Illinois, which begins Saturday morning, April 4th at various sites in Illinois – unless exempt, anglers must have a valid state fishing license & an inland trout stamp  :  for all things outdoors in Illinois, logon at www.dnr.illinois.gov.

 

(NEWTON)  There are two area meetings on tap tonight  :  the Jasper County Board meets tonight at the Jasper County Office Building in Newton, starting at 7:30  :  the Richland County Board meets tonight in the County Jail meeting room, beginning at 7:00 – the Board’s Finance Committee will meet an hour earlier at 6:00, also in the County Jail meeting room  :  all the meetings tonight are open to the public.

 

(OLNEY)  Most all roads in Richland County are under a weight limit restriction until further notice – with the exception of the designated truck route between Noble and Wakefield, all Richland County maintained roads are under a 10 ton weight limit – plus most all township roads are under a 5 ton or 8 ton weight limit as well – motorists must observe all weight limit signs posted on each respective road – for more details or information, contact the Richland County Highway Department or the respective Road Commissioner.

 

(NEWTON)  All area blood donors and/or first-time donors are urged to get out and give blood at their next opportunity, especially with all blood types & blood platelets in special need – here’s the next upcoming blood drive   :  today at the Olney VFW from 1:00 to 6:00  :  tomorrow at the Charleston High School from 9:00 to 3:00  :  Saturday at Potter’s House Ministry in Newton from 11:00 to 3:00  :  Sunday morning at the St. Joseph Community Club in Stringtown from 7:30 to 11:30  :  for more logon at www.redcrossblood.org.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The Newton Elementary Leadership Team is now taking orders for its “pork loin fundraiser” for Easter – the pickup will be Friday, April 3rd, at either 12 noon or 5:00, at the Elementary School in Newton – loins are $25 for a half or $40 for a whole and pay when placing an order – call the Elementary School in Newton at 618-783-8464 to place an order, or contact any NES employee – proceeds to the NES Leadership Fund


    The East Richland High School Choir will be in concert this Sunday afternoon in the Sliva Auditorium, beginning at 3:00 – it’s free admission and all are invited out to support the ERHS Choir


    The St. Joseph Boosters have their annual “pasta dinner” featuring the Trupiano family’s famous sauce this Saturday evening in the St. Joseph cafeteria with serving from 4:30 to 7:00 – carry-outs available with tickets at the door – all proceeds to support the music & athletic programs at the St. Joseph School in Olney


    The Rides Mass Transit District will have another special trip this Saturday for Jasper County residents – that’s to shop, eat, and socialize with a trip to Effingham as Senior Citizens can ride free with their RMTD card – however, seat reservations are needed by 3:00 today – call toll-free, at 866-389-7536


    The ERHS After Prom Committee will be selling 50/50 tickets and hosting a bake sale offering speciality cakes and pies this Friday night during the Olney VFW’s Taco Night – the serving runs from 5:30 to 7:00, or until sold out – the cakes and pies will be sold  whole or by the slice – all proceeds to benefit the 2015 After Prom, providing the youth of Richland County with safe prom night activities


    The local Grief Support Group will meet tonight at the First Presbyterian Church in Olney, starting at 6:30 – anyone can attend – for more information or details, call 618-534-8892


    The Embarras River Basin Agency in Newton will be distributing Federal Surplus commodities this afternoon from 4:00 to 6:00 – normal requirements apply – bring bags for pick up