LOCAL NEWS

Local News

November 30, 2017

 

(OLNEY)  A short wave weather trough interacting with an approaching cold front has triggered some widespread light rain across our downstate area which will end by mid-morning – then the cold front moves thru and we’ll have mid-to-late afternoon sunshine – an extended period of mild & dry weather is expected tomorrow thru Sunday before we get more rain Monday & Tuesday of next week – stay tuned for updates.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – new money General Obligation bonds for 2018 worth $750 million has been issued by the State – the bond proceeds will be used to fund major capital construction projects around the state and also finance information technology projects as well – Wednesday’s bond issue has an all-in borrowing cost for a combined series of 4.29 percent and is fully tax-exempt from federal taxation.

 

(OLNEY)  The start of the Illinois Bicentennial is only five days away and each day leading up to the kick off, the office of the Governor will share a winning entry in the Something to Learn About Illinois History video contest – yesterday’s video was by Will Elliott of Lake Forest High School, telling the incredible story of John G. Shedd, a retail clerk at Marshall Field who rose thru the ranks to succeed Field himself as President of the company – various events leading up to the Bicentennial Birthday Party on December 3rd, 2018, will continue throughout the next year – for more details, go online at  www.Illinois200.com.

 

(NEWTON)  Secretary of State and State Librarian Jesse White yesterday awarded poets as this year’s winners of the Gwendolyn Brooks Poetry Award in the 13th annual Illinois Emerging Writers Competition – Anita Olivia Koester of Chicago was awarded 1st place, while Faisal Mohyuddin of Chicago was 2nd – the 3rd place award went to Bryce Berkowitz of Carbondale – the winning poems are available for reading on the Secretary’s website online,   www.cyberdriveillinois.com/departments/library/center_for_the_book/.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County School Board met last night in special session in Olney – the Board  :  reviewed the results of the Richland County FACTS (Facility Advisory Citizens for Tomorrow’s Students) Committee report, which was presented at the Board’s regular monthly meeting on November 14th – the Committee’s series of five community engagement sessions over the past eight months gathered input from the community about a long-range facility plan for the Richland County School District – the highlights of the FACTS Committee include  :  the priority area of the long-range facility plan is the Richland County High School, which is the oldest building within the District (opened in 1952 / the Elementary School opened in 2000 / the Middle School had a complete renovation in 2009) – in addition to being the oldest building, RCHS also scores much lower on an assessment of educational adequacy conducted by the District’s architectural firm  :  secondly, a general renovation plan of the Richland County High School was suggested by the FACTS Committee – the plan was developed thru the five engagement sessions held in Olney as various options were reviewed – the estimated cost of the RCHS renovation work is $25 million  :  and lastly, the Committee suggested the use of a 1% county-wide sales tax to fund the long-range facility plan – this would prevent an increase in the property tax rate on the School District’s annual tax levy  :  the Board also reviewed information that the annual revenue generated in Richland County by the proposed 1% sales tax would be an estimated $1.2 million – items that would be exempt from the county-wide sales tax would be licensed & titled vehicles, boats, and RV’s, plus unprepared food intended for home consumption, over the counter & prescription drugs, and farm equipment & agricultural inputs, such as seed & fertilizer  :  no action was taken last night – the School Board’s next regular monthly meeting is on December 21st.

 

(XENIA)  Darren Bailey has formally filed his papers to be a candidate for State Representative in the 109th District – the Clay County farmer says he was truly humbled to be standing in line in Springfield to officially file the necessary paperwork to become a candidate for the Illinois House – Bailey’s been meeting voters & passing petitions over the past few months – the owner of Bailey Farms, Darren, and his wife Cindy, have four children and four grandchildren – the 109th District includes all or parts of nine downstate counties, including Clay, Effingham, Jasper, Richland, Lawrence, Wabash, Edwards, Wayne, and White.

 

(NEWTON)  The Jasper County Board of Review has started its duties for the 2017 assessment year – all complaints must be filed or postmarked on or before December 22nd, 2017, in the Jasper County Office Building, at 204 West Washington Street, in Newton – office hours are mornings from 9:00 to 12:00 noon, Monday thru Friday – afternoons by appointment only – call the Assessment Office at  618-783-8042.

 

(NEWTON)  Applications are still being accepted by the Embarras River Basin Agency for winter heating assistance thru the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) – while the signup continues for senior citizens & people with disabilities, also for disconnected households & families with children ages 5 or under, the signup will be open to all applicants beginning tomorrow, December 1st – potential applicants should contact their local ERBA office in Richland, Jasper, Lawrence, Crawford, Cumberland, Clark, Coles, Edgar, or Douglas Counties for an appointment & details – logon at  www.liheapIllinois.com.

 

(OLNEY)  It’s Moonlight Madness in Olney coming up this Friday night, December 1st – most all of the local downtown businesses will stay open late for your shopping needs as the participating stores will be open from 5:00 until 10:00 – for a list of those businesses taking part and the various specials available, check out the Olney Chamber of Commerce’s Facebook Event Page online – all this Friday night in Olney.

 

(NEWTON)  The City of Newton’s Street Department continues to vacuum leaves along the city streets, but time is starting to run out – leaves only will be vacuumed, no twigs and no tree limbs, and the leaves must be on the roadside of the ditch near the street or at the edge of the street as no leaves should be in the street as not to interfere with traffic – residents can call  618-783-8511  and leave a message with address and phone number if there are leaves to be vacuumed – do so quickly as the days are limited for vacuuming.

 

(OLNEY)  Area hunters are reminded to be safe while in the woods this weekend – the final four days of the 2017 Firearm Deer Season are today, tomorrow, Saturday, and Sunday in all area & downstate counties – hunting is allowed a half hour before sunrise to a half hour after sunset, again each day now thru Sunday.

 

(NEWTON/OLNEY)  All area blood donors are encouraged to get out and give blood at their next chance – here’s the list of all upcoming regional blood drives  :  today at the Blood Donation Center in Effingham from 12:15 to 6:45  :  tomorrow at the Richland County High School in Olney from 8:00 to 1:00  :  also tomorrow at the Sandoval High School from 11:00 to 3:30  :  all blood types & platelets are much needed.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The Richland County High School will present three performances this weekend of “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” in the Sliva Auditorium at RCHS – that’s this Friday night & Saturday night, December 1st & 2nd, each night at 6:30 – then the final show Sunday afternoon, December 3rd, at 2:00 – tickets are available at all local banks, plus at the door – all ages are encouraged to check it out


    The Olney Public Library will host a special Children’s Program, “The Magic of Christmas” this coming Saturday afternoon, starting at 2:30 – Santa Claus will be there to visit – all area children are invited


    Hospice of Southeastern Illinois has its Annual Cookie Walk & Festival of Trees this Saturday morning at the Trinity Lutheran Church in Olney from 9:00 to 12 noon – it will feature homemade cookies, candies, pies, cakes, breads, and more, plus the “Festival of Trees” silent auction – proceeds will benefit Hospice of Southeastern Illinois – to help out by donating baked goods or more, call the HSI office at  618-392-2745


    The Sailor Springs American Legion Post #230, just off the Clay City / Dieterich Blacktop, will have sausage, biscuits, & gravy at 6:00 Saturday morning, followed by a lunch of vegetable soup, chili, sloppy joes, & desserts – also, raffle tickets on sale to win a freezer with a $250 gift certificate and cash


    The American Legion Post #30 will host another Friday night “Fish Fry” this weekend with serving from 5:30 until sold out – that’s at 227 East Main Street in Olney – the $6 tickets will be on sale at the door


    Don’t forget to check out the Christmas Lights Display, lit up each night thru December 31st, in the Olney City Park – from dusk to 9:30 each night – donations accepted by the Bucket Brigade appreciated

 

 

 

November 29, 2017

 

(OLNEY)  As a cold front drops into the Ohio River Valley this morning, a cooler airmass will settle across Illinois today with a lot of downstate clouds – yet another cold front will move thru tonight, bringing with it rain chances late tonight into tomorrow morning before ending – then some sunshine by mid-afternoon and dry for the weekend ahead – it turns colder after some rain next Monday and Tuesday – listen for updates.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – just weeks after lawmakers approved the spending and tax package that ended Illinois’ budget stalemate, an effort is continuing to undo a part of the agreement – a Chicago lawmaker has filed legislation to cut one of the fees in the package that affects local governments throughout the state – House Bill 4101 proposes to cut in half a state fee imposed on municipalities for collecting a number of locally imposed taxes, particularly for communities that collect a higher sales tax than the standard state rate of 6.25% – the House Revenue Committee took no action on the bill after a hearing was held yesterday.

 

(OLNEY)  The Southern Illinois University chancellor wants to eliminate academic departments and department heads as the downstate campus continues to see dropping enrollment and finances – the move would save SIU at Carbondale some $2.3 million annually – opponents of the plan say the reorganization effort would result in unneeded complications while some faculty members support the plan, saying the downsizing effort in long overdue – if approved, the changes are to be implemented by July 2018.

 

(NEWTON)  With the Thanksgiving holiday weekend wrapping up this past Sunday, the Illinois State Police at District 12 Headquarters, based in Effingham, is noting there were no local and/or area deaths in our ten area counties during the heavy travel period this past weekend – District 12 Commander, Captain Cory Ristvedt, says the District 12 Troopers will continue to do their part of education and enforcement to help keep the zero fatality trend going all thru the holidays – the State Police will continue its “Click It or Ticket” program with help from the State Department of Transportation & local law enforcement personnel.

 

(NOBLE)  The Noble Village Board met earlier this week in regular session – the Board  :  approved a $2,000 yearly donation in support of the Richland County Development Corporation  :  agreed to spend $7,614.44 to have Straeffer Pump & Supply, Inc. to repair two pumps to serve as backup for the Village  :  agreed to change the parking in front of the residence at 121 North Noble Avenue from angling to parallel parking per the resident’s request  :  agreed to spend $225 to have the Village’s utility truck tailgate repainted  :  discussed, but took no action to apply for a dilapidated / abandoned properties program grant  :  noted that the Village’s Christmas Party will be held December 14th  :  noted that the Village’s leaf collection is continuing as residents can call Village Hall  :  and noted that the Board’s second meeting in December has been cancelled  :  the Board’s next regular meeting will be held December 11th in Noble.

 

(OLNEY)  Congratulations to the Olney FFA Agricultural Sales team – it was earlier this month that the team of Jessica Shilling, Evan Walker, Madison Michels, and Austin Atwood took part in the District Five Ag Sales Career Development Event held at Rend Lake College & it came away with another 1st place finish – the Olney squad outscored the 2nd place team from Eldorado by one point, 804 to 803 – the team from Vienna finished 3rd with 764 points – the top three teams now advance to the State Agriculture Sales CDE on December 9th in Champaign – the individual results included 1st place to Caitlyn Stanley of Eldorado, 2nd place Austin Atwood of Olney, 3rd place Evan Walker of Olney, 4th place Madison Michels of Olney, and 5th place Kaleb Fulkner of Vienna – best of luck to the Olney FFA team on December 9th.

 

(NEWTON)  The 2017 Holly Jolly Jasper County Christmas kicks off this weekend in Newton with the first of three weekend celebrations this Friday, December 1st – it starts at 5:00 with a Tree Lighting & Special Dedication – then Children’s Craft Activities and plenty of cookies & hot chocolate at the Jasper County Chamber of Commerce Office from 5:00 to 7:00 – plus visits with Santa Claus and a host of Holly Jolly Characters and great shopping, live music, and more all in downtown Newton – also this weekend, it’s the Holiday Shopping Expo from 9:00 to 3:00 Saturday at the Ste. Marie American Legion – the Holly Jolly Craft Show from 9:00 to 3:00 Saturday at the KC Hall in Newton – Cookies with Mrs. Claus from 11:00 to 3:00 Saturday at State Farm in Newton – and the Annual Santa Train visit to Newton from 9:00 to 10:00 Sunday morning – the Holly Jolly Jasper County Christmas kicks off this weekend in Newton.

 

(OLNEY)  The City of Olney is continuing with its leaf collection program – the leaf pick up machines are driving through the city, collecting loose leaf piles, which should be placed as close to the roadway as possible, but not in ditches and not in the streets – if bagging leaves, citizens can place the bags near the roadway and notify the Olney City Hall when the bags are ready for pick up – the City of Olney’s brush dump is open to the public on Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays, & Saturdays, from 10:00 to 4:00, each day.

 

(NEWTON)  The Illinois Farm Service Agency is reminding eligible farmers to cast their votes for the 2017 FSA County Committee elections – all ballots must be returned to the local FSA offices by next Monday, December 4th – terms of the newly elected committee members and their alternates take effect January 1st, 2018 – farmers that did not receive a ballot by mail can pick one up at their local FSA office.

 

(OLNEY)  It’s Moonlight Madness in Olney coming up this Friday night, December 1st – most all of the local downtown businesses will stay open late for your shopping needs as the participating stores will be open from 5:00 until 10:00 – for a list of those businesses taking part and the various specials available, check out the Olney Chamber of Commerce’s Facebook Event Page online – all this Friday night in Olney.

 

(NEWTON/OLNEY)  All area blood donors are encouraged to get out and give blood at their next chance – here’s the list of all upcoming regional blood drives  :  today at the Cumberland High School northwest of Greenup from 1:30 to 6:30  :  also today at the Blood Donation Center in Effingham from 12:15 to 7:15  :  tomorrow at the Blood Donation Center in Effingham from 12:15 to 6:45  :  all blood types are needed.

 

(NEWTON)  The boil water order remains in effect for the portion of Newton along South Van Buren Street, from the Filler Up Buffet to 11674 East 810th Avenue, including GSI – this is due to a water main repair made yesterday – the boil water order is in effect for this area of Newton until further notice.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County School Board will have a special meeting tonight in the District Office Board Room, starting at 6:00 – the only agenda item includes discussion of the FACTS report and any possible recommendations as a result of the various meetings that were held in Olney over the past several months – tonight’s special School Board meeting in Olney is open to the public as anyone can attend.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The Richland County High School will present three performances this weekend of “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” in the Sliva Auditorium at RCHS – that’s this Friday night & Saturday night, December 1st & 2nd, each night at 6:30 – then the final show Sunday afternoon, December 3rd, at 2:00 – tickets are available at all local banks, plus at the door – all ages are encouraged to check it out


    The Olney Public Library will host a special Children’s Program, “The Magic of Christmas” this coming Saturday afternoon, starting at 2:30 – Santa Claus will be there to visit – all area children are invited


    Hospice of Southeastern Illinois has its Annual Cookie Walk & Festival of Trees this Saturday morning at the Trinity Lutheran Church in Olney from 9:00 to 12 noon – it will feature homemade cookies, candies, pies, cakes, breads, and more, plus the “Festival of Trees” silent auction – proceeds will benefit Hospice of Southeastern Illinois – to help out by donating baked goods or more, call the HSI office at  618-392-2745


    The American Legion Post #30 will host another Friday night “Fish Fry” this weekend with serving from 5:30 until sold out – that’s at 227 East Main Street in Olney – the $6 tickets will be on sale at the door


    Don’t forget to check out the Christmas Lights Display, lit up each night thru December 31st, in the Olney City Park – from dusk to 10:00 each night – donations accepted by the Bucket Brigade appreciated

 

 

 

November 28, 2017

 

(OLNEY)  We’ll have one more day of warmer-than-normal conditions before an approaching cold front brings us a wind switch and a little cooler air, but no significant rain – the dry conditions hang around with cooler air in place tomorrow, although another cold front will bring us rain chances thru Thursday morning – then dry for Friday and the weekend ahead – maybe more rain the first of next week – listen for updates.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – hundreds of candidates were in line yesterday outside the Board of Elections in Springfield waiting to file their petitions for the 2018 election – the filing, which could see record spending in the race for Governor, also includes those running for Congress, State Constitutional Officers, other lawmakers, and judges – the filing period in Illinois continues thru next Monday, December 4th.

 

(OLNEY)  Governor Bruce Rauner granted five clemency requests while denying 97 others – it was last week that the Governor reviewed his twenty-first set of petitions since he took office nearly three years ago – a granted clemency request for a pardon with allows the petitioner to seek expungement of their conviction thru the court system – Governor Rauner spent the first two years in office dealing with a 10 year plus backlog of clemency requests that went unconsidered by the Blagojevich and Quinn administrations.

 

(NEWTON)  In yesterday’s USDA Crop Report – farmers continue working on fall tillage and completing harvest activities across the state – last week’s statewide average temperature was 40 degrees, just over 1 degree (1.2) above normal – Illinois’ average rainfall last week was at zero (0.00), just over three quarters of an inch (0.76) below normal – while the topsoil and subsoil moisture levels both averaged around 80% adequate, the state’s winter wheat condition was 62% good to excellent, 27% fair, and 11% poor to very poor  :  farmers in our ten county area report nearly all the local corn & soybean crops have been harvested with the local winter wheat crop mostly in good to excellent condition – farmers are reminded to continue thinking “safety first” as the harvest wraps up, fall tillage finishes, & other pre-winter farm work continues.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Board met in special session last night for less than an hour – the Board  :  approved the Fiscal Year 2018 budget as presented – the County’s new fiscal year begins December 1st, this coming Friday  :  after much discussion, approved the Tax Levy for Fiscal Year 2018 at under a 5% increase, therefore not requiring a Truth in Taxation Hearing  :  approved a three year contract with amendments with the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP)  :  approved a one year policy for Cyber Insurance  :  and approved the remaining county claims to finish up Fiscal Year 2017  :  the Richland County Board’s next regular monthly meeting will be held at the County Jail meeting room on December 14th, at 7:00.

 

(OLNEY)  The Olney City Council met in regular session last night – the Council  :  approved the $11,847 purchase of fourteen SCBA (self-contained breathing apparatus) cylinders for the Olney Fire Department  :  approved the $4,490 low bid from Enlow Welding for the demolition of property at 331 West Lafayette Street  :  accepted the $1,050 high bid to sell the city property at 539 South Shields Street  :  agreed to vacate a portion of the east/west alley in the 100 block of South Camp Street for the new alley extension between West Main Street and West Chestnut Street  :  agreed to donate a surplus 1985 fire truck to the Claremont Bonpas Fire Protection District  :  approved a resolution to support the Illinois Bicentennial Celebration – Richland County will host a Flag Raising Ceremony next Monday, December 4th, at 12:00 noon at the Richland County Courthouse with all the public welcomed to attend  :  and heard various other reports  :  the next regular bi-monthly meeting for the Olney City Council will be December 12th at 7:00.

 

(NEWTON)  Governor Bruce Rauner has signed a bill into law sponsored by State Representative David Reis that helps rural wastewater customers – it was earlier this year that the Ste. Marie lawmaker introduced the bill on behalf of  EJ Water Cooperative and rural customers seeking new wastewater service, mostly to help those in rural areas that are not served by a sanitary district – this is great news for those in rural parts of Illinois who can now get wastewater service along with their clean water service at the same time.

 

(NEWTON)  The Jasper County 5th & 6th Grade Bands, along with the Jasper County Junior High Band, will be hosting their 1st Annual Tablescape Contest and the public is encouraged to stop by the Jasper County Chamber of Commerce office in Newton to check out the beautiful tablescapes displayed from ten local businesses from throughout the community as each table will depict a special theme – the Tablescape Contest is next weekend with the public to decide what business deserves the “People’s Choice Award” – that will be Friday night, December 8th, from 5:00 to 7:00, Saturday afternoon, December 9th, from 12:00 to 3:00, and Sunday afternoon, December 10th, from 2:00 to 6:00 – tickets for admission will only be sold at the Chamber Office, priced at $5 each for Friday and Saturday with the $10 price per person on Sunday to include refreshments and an entry pass for a Christmas House Walk, which will be held from 3:00 to 6:00 next Sunday, December 10th, at four homes in Newton – that will be held after the Newton Community High School Chorus performs their Christmas Program at the St. Thomas Church at 2:00 Sunday afternoon – all proceeds from the busy weekend go to help the bands purchase instruments, new uniforms, and music.

 

(OLNEY)  In news from the North Pole – Santa’s elves made a special delivery in Olney over the weekend, delivering the Letters to Santa Mailbox at Bower Park – while Santa and his elves are busily getting things ready for Christmas, including the naughty and nice lists, and because of his busy schedule over the next few weeks, Santa Claus is encouraging all local children to write letters to him, stating what they would like for Christmas so he can let his elves know what to make – it’s very important that children include their full name and address so Santa Claus can reply – there is no need for a stamp, as Santa has pre-paid all of the postage – simply drop the letters in the Santa Mailbox in Olney’s Bower Park, as soon as possible.

 

(OLNEY)  It’s Moonlight Madness in Olney coming up this Friday night, December 1st – most all of the local downtown businesses will stay open late for your shopping needs as the participating stores will be open from 5:00 until 10:00 – for a list of those businesses taking part and the various specials available, check out the Olney Chamber of Commerce’s Facebook Event Page online – all this Friday night in Olney.

 

(NEWTON/OLNEY)  All area blood donors are encouraged to get out and give blood at their next chance – here’s the list of all upcoming regional blood drives  :  today at the Iuka Grade School from 2:00 to 6:00  :  tomorrow at the Cumberland High School northwest of Greenup from 1:30 to 6:30  :  Thursday at the Blood Donation Center in Effingham from 12:15 to 6:45  :  all blood types and platelets are very much needed.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The Richland County High School will present three performances this weekend of “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” in the Sliva Auditorium at RCHS – that’s this Friday night & Saturday night, December 1st & 2nd, each night at 6:30 – then the final show Sunday afternoon, December 3rd, at 2:00 – tickets are available at all local banks, plus at the door – all ages are encouraged to check it out


    The Olney Public Library will host a special Children’s Program, “The Magic of Christmas” this coming Saturday afternoon, starting at 2:30 – Santa Claus will be there to visit – all area children are invited


    The Sailor Springs American Legion Post #230, just off the Clay City / Dieterich Blacktop, has deer hunting meals this Saturday – it’s sausage, biscuits, & gravy at 6:00am, followed by a lunch of vegetable soup, chili, sloppy joes, & desserts – also, raffle tickets on sale to win a freezer with a $250 gift certificate, plus cash prizes of $100, $75, $50, & $50 – everyone is welcome – for more, call Larry at  618-508-3962


    Hospice of Southeastern Illinois has its Annual Cookie Walk & Festival of Trees this Saturday morning at the Trinity Lutheran Church in Olney from 9:00 to 12 noon – it will feature homemade cookies, candies, pies, cakes, breads, and more, plus the “Festival of Trees” silent auction – proceeds will benefit Hospice of Southeastern Illinois – to help out by donating baked goods or more, call the HSI office at  618-392-2745


    The American Legion Post #30 will host another Friday night “Fish Fry” this weekend with serving from 5:30 until sold out – that’s at 227 East Main Street in Olney – the $6 tickets will be on sale at the door


    The Pink Warrior Sisters Support Group will have its regular monthly meeting tonight at Monical’s Pizza in Olney, starting at 6:00 – all are invited with special support and concern for those battling cancer


    Don’t forget to check out the Christmas Lights Display, lit up each night thru December 31st, in the Olney City Park – from dusk to 10:00 each night – donations accepted by the Bucket Brigade appreciated

 

 

 

November 27, 2017

 

(OLNEY)  Abnormally warm & dry conditions are on tap for most of this final week of November – a mostly dry cold front will drop thru Illinois tomorrow night, giving us a wind switch and a little cooler air – however, a second cold front moving thru Wednesday night will give us a better rain chance thru Thursday – then we’re back to dry and cool conditions for the first weekend of December – stay tuned for updates.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – although the current weather conditions are anything like winter weather, the Illinois Department of Transportation & the Illinois Emergency Management Agency are encouraging everyone to take time now to prepare for winter weather – as part of  IDOT’s “Winter Weather – Get It Together” safety campaign families are urged to develop emergency kits for all family vehicles, plus IEMA officials want folks to be ready for bad weather conditions – for tips, logon at  www.Ready.Illinois.gov.

 

(OLNEY)  Statewide home sales shifted back into positive territory in October following several months of declines, plus median prices continued to make year-over-year gains, that’s according to Illinois Realtors – the statewide home sales last month totaled 12,796 units sold, up slightly by three tenths of a percentage point (0.3) from October last year – the state’s median price was $185,000 which is up 3.9% from October 2016 – 43 of Illinois’ 102 counties reported sales gains for October 2017 over previous-year numbers.

 

(NEWTON/OLNEY)  The State DNR has released preliminary numbers from Illinois’ first three days of the 2017 Firearm Deer Season – hunters took 51,365 deer compared to 54,452 during the first firearm weekend in 2016 – that’s a nearly 6% drop from last year’s statewide harvest – meanwhile, the numbers were down by just under 3% in our ten county area surrounding Newton & Olney, although the deer harvest stats were down from last year in each of the area counties except for Lawrence County – Wayne County had the highest harvest for the first three days at 977 deer, followed by Clay County at 760, Crawford County at 673, Jasper County at 663, Effingham County at 580, Richland County at 481, Cumberland County at 478, Lawrence County at 394, Edwards County at 273, and Wabash County at 123 – the final four days of the Firearm Deer Season in Illinois is this coming Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

 

(OLNEY)  The Illinois Eastern Community College Board of Trustees met for its regular monthly meeting last week in Olney – the Board  :  approved a salary a 2.5% salary increase for all non-bargaining unit full-time employees  :  certified the District’s Tax Levies for Fiscal Year 2018  :  approved the dates, times, and meeting locations for the 2018 calendar year – the Board will continue to meet on the third Tuesday of each month, with the exception of December  :  approved an emergency heat exchanger repair at Olney Central College  :  approved the holiday calendar for administrative, technical, professional non-faculty, clerical, and maintenance personnel for calendar year 2018 (same as previous years)  :  approved two easements on District property at Frontier Community College in Fairfield  :  approved changes in student fees for the District’s CPR Course & Apprenticeship Program to reflect the actual cost rather than a stated dollar amount  :  approved revised requirements for applicant test scores for the District’s Allied Health Program  :  and in personnel action – accepted the retirement resignations for Workforce Education Instructor William Rogers effective December 1 and for District Office Chief Finance Officer Roger Browning effective May 1, 2018 – accepted the resignation for Wabash Valley College Nursing Instructor Amy Scamman – hired Joseph Brown as Truck Driving Instructor at Wabash Valley College, Brittany Harris as Nursing Instructor at Frontier Community College, Julie Auteberry as TRIO Upward Bound Counselor at Wabash Valley College, and Carrie Thomas as Administrative Assistant for the Workforce Education Program  :  the next regular monthly meeting for the IECC Board of Trustees will be December 12th at 7:00 at Wabash Valley College in Mt. Carmel.

 

(NEWTON)  The Newton City Council met in regular session last Tuesday night – here’s a look at the unofficial minutes – the Council  :  accepted the $84,534 bid for the City of Newton’s business insurance thru the Illinois Municipal League Risk Management Association for one year  :  approved the amendment for federal participation to provide funds for Newton’s Eagle Trail Phase II project  :  approved a sidewalk agreement for 206 West Reynolds Street from the City’s Beautification Fund  :  approved the Special Event application for the proposed Holly Jolly ice rink to be held December 8th thru 10th  :  noted the City will host a “Bicentennial Flag” raising at City Hall on December 4th at 12 noon  :  noted the leaf collections are continuing  :  and took no action after a 14-minute closed session  :  the next regular meeting for the Newton City Council is December 5th at 6:00.

 

(OLNEY)  Hospice of Southeastern Illinois will host its 28th Annual Cookie Walk & 11th Annual Festival of Trees this coming Saturday morning, December 2nd, at the Trinity Lutheran Church, at the east edge of Olney – running from 9:00 to 12 noon, the event will feature a large assortment of homemade cookies, pies, cakes, candies, breads, and more, plus the “Festival of Trees” silent auction will be held – all proceeds will benefit Hospice of Southeastern Illinois, which provides care & support to terminally ill patients and their families throughout 13 area counties – anyone interested in donating items for the Cookie Walk or for those who’d like more general information, please call the Hospice office in Olney, at  618-392-2745.

 

(NEWTON)  The 2017 Holly Jolly Jasper County Christmas kicks off this coming weekend in Newton – a month-long celebration of Burl Ives’ most beloved Christmas character “Sam the Snowman” – the first of three weekend celebrations is this coming Friday, December 1st – it starts with a Tree Lighting & Special Dedication at 5:00 – then Children’s Craft Activities and plenty of cookies & hot chocolate at the Jasper County Chamber of Commerce Office from 5:00 to 7:00 – not to mention visits with Santa Claus and a host of Holly Jolly Characters – plus great shopping, live music, and more all in downtown Newton – also this weekend, it’s the Holiday Shopping Expo from 9:00 to 3:00 Saturday at the Ste. Marie American Legion – the Holly Jolly Craft Show from 9:00 to 3:00 Saturday at the KC Hall in Newton – Cookies with Mrs. Claus from 11:00 to 3:00 Saturday at State Farm in Newton – and the Annual Santa Train visit to Newton from 9:00 to 10:00 Sunday morning – the Holly Jolly Jasper County Christmas kicks off this weekend in Newton.

 

(OLNEY)  It’s Moonlight Madness in Olney coming up this Friday night, December 1st – most all of the local downtown businesses will stay open late for your shopping needs as the participating stores will be open from 5:00 until 10:00 – for a list of those businesses taking part and the various specials available, check out the Olney Chamber of Commerce’s Facebook Event Page online – all this Friday night in Olney.

 

(NEWTON/OLNEY)  All area blood donors are encouraged to get out and give blood at their next chance – here’s the list of all upcoming regional blood drives  :  today at the Palestine High School from 12:30 to 5:30  :  also today at the Christian Church Annex in Mason from 2:00 to 6:00  :  tomorrow at the Iuka Grade School from 2:00 to 6:00  :  Wednesday at the Cumberland High School northwest of Greenup from 1:30 to 6:30  :  all blood types and platelets are much needed to help replenish low area & regional blood supplies.

 

(OLNEY)  There’s a few meetings coming up tonight in Richland County  :  the Richland County Board will have a special meeting tonight in the County Jail meeting room in Olney, starting at 6:00  :  the Olney City Council meets tonight at the Olney City Hall, beginning at 7:00  :  the Noble Village Board meets tonight at the Village Hall in Noble, also at 7:00  :  all three of the meetings are open to the public.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The Richland County High School will present three performances this weekend of “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” in the Sliva Auditorium at RCHS – that’s this Friday night & Saturday night, December 1st & 2nd, each night at 6:30 – then the final show Sunday afternoon, December 3rd, at 2:00 – tickets are available at all local banks, plus at the door – all ages are encouraged to check it out


    The Olney Public Library will host a special Children’s Program, “The Magic of Christmas” this coming Saturday afternoon, starting at 2:30 – Santa Claus will be there to visit – all area children are invited


    The American Legion Post #30 will host another Friday night “Fish Fry” this weekend with serving from 5:30 until sold out – that’s at 227 East Main Street in Olney – the $6 tickets will be on sale at the door


    The Pink Warrior Sisters Support Group will have its regular monthly meeting tomorrow night at 6:00 at Monical’s Pizza in Olney – all are invited with special support and concern for those battling with cancer


    The Olney Chamber of Commerce will host a special Get Covered Illinois event tomorrow morning from 9:00 to 11:00 at its office at 216 East Main Street – a Get Covered Illinois representative will be on hand to provide information and help with the 2018 Open Enrollment process, which continues thru December 15th – all are invited to stop by with any questions or to get more information – that’s tomorrow morning


    Don’t forget to check out the Christmas Lights Display, lit up each night thru December 31st, in the Olney City Park – from dusk to 10:00 each night – donations accepted by the Bucket Brigade appreciated

 

 

 

November 25, 2017

 

(OLNEY)  With another cold front moving thru our downstate region last night, switching that wind from the northwest, we’ll have a little cooler sky on tap today with sunshine – but another high pressure ridge will keep up dry with more sunshine tomorrow thru the first half of next week – plus warmer air moves in on Monday before our next rain chance by Wednesday of next week – stay tuned for continued updates.

 

(NEWTON)  The State Attorney General’s Office has released its annual Safe Shopping Guide highlighting hazardous toys, children’s products, and household items that have been recalled over the past year to help Illinois families ensure a safe holiday shopping season – the 2017 Safe Shopping Guide includes detailed descriptions & photographs and describes the 68 recalls of children’s products over the past ten months – to check it out, go online at  www.illinoisattorneygeneral.gov/consumers/2017_Safe_Shopping_Guide.pdf.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  With the holiday shopping season here once again, authorities are warning area residents of more scams  :  phone calls are being made to grandparents from scammers claiming to be a grandchild in need of money due to vehicle repairs, jail bonds, or other reasons – the scammer usually wants money wired to them as soon as possible  :  another scam involves a caller identifying themself as being with the U.S. Marshall’s Service, seeking payment for a bogus fine for allegedly being absent from a federal grand jury summons  :  and yet another scam is from a bogus utility company demanding payment on a delinquent account and threatening jail time if not immediately paid  :  residents are reminded to never give out personal information to anyone – if they claim to be family, ask questions or get a call back number for verification – if questions, simply hang up on the caller and contact your local law enforcement agency.

 

(OLNEY)  With the Thanksgiving holiday weekend generally one of the busiest travel periods of the year, the Illinois State Police reminds all motorists to drive safely – all are encouraged to keep their eyes on the road, watch the speed limits, buckle up everyone in the vehicle, and refrain from drinking alcohol prior to driving – the State Police are conducting their “Click It or Ticket” program now thru Monday as Troopers are out in extra force conducting roadside safety checks, saturation patrols, and more throughout Illinois.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  Today is Small Business Saturday – a day to celebrate and support small businesses and all they do for their communities – please join all of us at WVLN-WSEI in supporting our local small businesses – we encouraged everyone to pledge to “Shop Small” this weekend & throughout the next year.

 

(OLNEY)  The Annual Olney Christmas Parade, sponsored by the Olney Rotary Club, is tonight with judging from 5:00 to 5:30 and lineup at the Immanuel United Methodist Church on North East Street – starting at 6:30, the parade will go south from the church on East Street, then west on Main Street, south at Whittle Avenue, and end – in an effort to make the parade safe, the City of Olney has implemented a Temporary “No Parking” Order along the parade route from 3:00 to 9:00 this afternoon & tonight – this includes both sides of North East Street, Main Street, and Whittle Avenue, down to West North Avenue.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  All area blood donors are encouraged to get out and give blood at their next chance – here’s the list of all upcoming regional blood drives  :  today at the Blood Donation Center in Effingham from 7:45 to 2:15  :  next Monday at the Palestine High School from 12:30 to 5:30  :  also next Monday at the Christian Church Annex in Mason from 2:00 to 6:00  :  all blood types and platelets are much needed.

 

REMINDERS  :
    A “Craft Show” is this weekend at The Holiday in Olney – that’s from 9:00 to 5:00 both today and tomorrow – all kinds of crafts and other holiday items available – that’s all at The Holiday in Olney


    It’s Mingle & Jingle Holiday Shopping today from 9:00 to 2:30 at Havoline Hall, on the west side of the square in Lawrenceville – all kinds of items on sale, plus register for door prizes – all proceeds will be donated to the Lawrence County Cancer Resource Center & Wig Shoppe – all are invited to check it out


    Don’t forget to check out the Christmas Lights Display, lit up each night thru December 31st, in the Olney City Park – from dusk to 10:00 each night – donations accepted by the Bucket Brigade appreciated