LOCAL NEWS

Local News

January 16, 2018

 

(OLNEY)  An arctic high pressure over the Upper Plains will move southward today and into the Mid Mississippi river valley – this will provide us with bitter cold conditions for a couple of more days & nights, plus an upper level disturbance could give us a few flurries later today & tonight – then as that high drifts to our southeast, we’ll get a southerly wind flow with warmer air moving in Thursday thru Sunday – in fact, we’ll be in the 50’s with rain chances by Sunday afternoon – then normal next week – listen for updates.

 

(NEWTON)  The National Weather Service still has a Wind Chill Advisory in effect for all surrounding counties until 12:00 noon today – in fact, our local and area wind chill values will not rise much above zero today, tonight, and thru much of tomorrow – although the winds are light, the snow cover and the bitterly cold arctic air all combine to keep the wind chill readings at or below zero – those outdoors are reminded that frostbite and hypothermia can occur if precautions are not taken – however, it will all be a thing of the past with a weather warm up just days away – stay tuned to a NOAA Weather Alert Radio for updates.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  While most area and regional highways are mostly clear now, with the exception of a few patchy ice spots due to the blowing snow, we remind you that nearly all county, township, & rural roads plus many of our local city & village streets, are snow packed & very slick – in fact, folks are being advised to avoid travel on all secondary roads until later this week – if traveling statewide, drivers can used IDOT’s newly designed website with updated information on road conditions around the state – that’s available on computers & mobile devices, at  www.GettingAroundIllinois.com  – folks can still call IDOT’s toll-free road condition hotline at  1-800-452-4368  :  and by the way, for a list of cancellations that we’ve received, go to our websites and simply click on the “weather” tab and scroll down, or click on the “snowflake” in the upper right hand corner of your computer monitor or smart phone and see what’s be cancelled and/or closed – that’s at  www.freedom929.com, www.1035theeagle.com, www.wvlnam.com, or www.wowaradio.com.

 

(OLNEY)  The USDA last week announced the individuals who will serve on the Illinois USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) state committee – it’s these men & women who are responsible for the oversight of farm programs and county committee operations, resolving appeals from the agriculture community, and helping to keep statewide producers informed about FSA programs – each committee in each state has five members, including one chairperson and four other members – those appointed in Illinois includes Committee Chair Jim Reed from DeLand, plus the other committee members Martin R. Barbre from Carmi, Troy Uphoff from Findlay, Melanie DeSutter from Woodhull, and Ron Moore from Roseville.

 

(NEWTON)  Congressman John Shimkus is once again asking constituents to participate in his annual “Valentines for Heroes” program where the lawmaker’s district offices will collect valentines for distribution throughout the downstate region to Veterans and those currently serving in the military – valentines will be accepted until February 9th, three weeks from this Friday, and then they’ll be distributed to local VA and military facilities before Valentine’s Day – valentines should be submitted without any address to a specific person, without any last names signed and no address, and without sealing them in their individual envelope – the valentines can be dropped off at the Congressman’s downstate offices, either at 101 North Fourth Street, Suite 303, in Effingham, or at City Hall Room 12, 110 East Locust Street, in Harrisburg – if any questions, call the Congressman’s Maryville office at  618-288-7190.

 

(OLNEY)  The USDA last week released its Illinois Crop Production 2017 Summary  :  the planted area for corn was at 11.20 million acres, down 3% from 2016 – the corn for grain was harvested on 10.95 million acres, down 4% – the corn yield came in at 201 bushels per acre, up 4 bushels from 2016 and a record high yield in Illinois – the state’s corn production came in at 2.2 billion bushels, down 2% from last year, but the fourth highest production on record  :  the planted area for soybeans was at 10.6 million acres, up 5% from 2016 – the harvest area for beans was 10.55 million acres, also up 5% from the previous year – the soybean yield at 58 bushels per acre was down 1 bushel from 2016 – the state’s bean production was at a record high 612 million bushels, up 3% from the previous year  :  the planted area for grain sorghum was down 6% from 2016 – the sorghum yield at 83 bushels per acre was down 10 bushels from the year before – the sorghum production was 16% lower than the previous year  :  the harvested area for all hay was at 490,000 acres, up 2% from 2016 – hay production in 2017 was at 1.63 million tons, 9% above the year before.

 

(OLNEY)  Mark your calendars for Tuesday night, January 30th, two weeks from tonight – that’s the night for the 2018 Richland County Relay for Life “Kick Off” Meeting, which will be held that evening at 6:00 at The Holiday Restaurant & Motel in Olney – we hope that you will help out this year in beating our biggest rival  :  cancer  :  the meeting will include details about the 2018 Relay for Life in Richland County, plus teams can be signed up that night and fundraising supplies will be available – those planning to attend are asked to RSVP to Sarah at  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  or call her at  218-343-1833  by January 22nd – all are invited out to the Richland County Relay for Life “Kick Off” Meeting coming up on January 30th in Olney – let’s team up together and make an all-out effort in 2018 in our local and area fight against cancer.

 

(NEWTON)  The Winter Jasper County Solid Waste Program continues now thru the end of March – the dumpster at the Rose Hill site will be available tomorrow morning from 7:30 until 12:00, or if the dumpster is filled before 10:30, another dumpster will be brought to that location – the Newton / Jasper County Highway Garage location will be open Saturday and every Saturday this month from 7:00 to 3:30 accepting appliances (with requirements) plus the county’s drop-off recycling container also available.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON/NOBLE)  A reminder that Republic Services will be out trying to haul trash today, but doing so a day or two later than the normal route, due obviously to the extreme weather & road conditions –this is for all Republic customers in the Olney, Noble, Newton, & surrounding area – the patience of all area Republic customers is appreciated  :  Olney’s recycling collection is running on schedule with no delay.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  All blood donors are encouraged to get out and give blood at their next opportunity – here’s the list of upcoming blood drives in our area  :  both tomorrow and Thursday at the Blood Donation Center in Effingham from 12:15 to 6:45 each day  :  on Friday at the Clay City Banking Company from 2:00 to 6:00  :  all blood types and platelets are very much needed to help replenish low blood supplies.

 

(NEWTON/OLNEY)  There are two meetings on schedule for tonight  :  the Illinois Eastern Community Colleges Board of Trustees has its regular monthly meeting tonight at 7:00 at Lincoln Trail College east & north of Robinson  :  the Newton City Council has its regular bi-monthly meeting tonight at 6:00 at the Newton City Hall  :  both of the regular meetings are open to the public at their respective locations.

 

REMINDERS  :
    A fundraising “fish fry” is coming up this Saturday evening at the Claremont Community Club, serving from 5:00 to 7:30 – the cost is $10 per plate – the menu includes fish, baked beans, cole slaw, bread, & dessert – all proceeds go to help with the cost of a mission trip to the Dominican Republic for a local family


    The Olney FFA Alumni has its “pancake & sausage breakfast” this Saturday morning in the RCHS Cafeteria, serving from 6:30 to 12:00 noon – tickets at the door – $6 for adults, $4 for children age 12 & under – proceeds for college scholarships, leadership camps, conferences, & conventions for FFA members

 

 

 

January 15, 2018

 

(OLNEY)  A cold front will move thru Illinois by later this afternoon as the snow will end and more arctic air will move in for tonight, tomorrow, and Wednesday – meanwhile, an upper level disturbance continues to pivot over Illinois, giving us snow flurries on-and-off this afternoon thru tomorrow night – we’ll stay cold until a high pressure brings us warmer air for the weekend ahead – look for rain Saturday night into Sunday - stay tuned for continued weather updates.

 

(NEWTON)  The National Weather Service has a Winter Weather Advisory is effect for Jasper, Richland, and most all surrounding counties until 12:00 noon today with an accumulation of at least 1 to 2 inches of snow this morning, maybe a little more towards the I-70 corridor – the snow will be reduced to flurries this afternoon – then a Wind Chill Advisory takes effect for the same area at 6:00 tonight and continues until 12:00 noon tomorrow (Tuesday) – with a strong west / northwest wind at 15 to 25 miles-per-hour gusting even higher, our regional wind chill values will be at or below zero thru the overnight hours – authorities are urging folks not to travel unless necessary – listen to a NOAA Weather Alert Radio for updates.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  We remind you that all of the cancellations that we receive will be immediately posted on our websites online – simply click on the “weather” tab and scroll down to the list of closings and/or cancellations – that’s at  www.freedom929.comwww.1035theeagle.com,  or  www.wvlnam.com  – also, if traveling the Illinois Department of Transportation has its newly designed website available with updated information on road conditions around the state – available on computers and mobile devices, the website includes the ability to identify and zoom in to specific locations, travel routes, and/or destinations from anywhere within the state – that’s online at  www.GettingAroundIllinois.com – folks can also check out the latest road conditions for Illinois by calling the IDOT road-line, at  1-800-452-4368.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  The Illinois Association of Agricultural Fairs (IAAF) is gearing up for its 108th Annual Convention & Trade Show, scheduled to start later this week and run over the weekend – that’s this coming Thursday thru Sunday, January 19th thru 21st, in Springfield – the event is held for the 104 Illinois County Fairs, the Illinois & Du Quoin State Fairs, & the approximately 290 Associate Members, to get together in one place to interchange & share new & creative “fair ideas” – the annual convention also includes a talent contest, a trade show, and the Miss Illinois County Fair Queen Pageant – current Queen Claudia VanOpdorp, Miss Henry County Fair Queen, from Annawan, will oversee the 2018 Pageant, which will include participation by Miss Richland County Fair Queen Kylar Craig, Miss Jasper County Fair Queen Kennedy Parr, and most all other regional Fair Queens from our downstate area – both the Richland County Farm & Fair Association and the Jasper County Fair Board will be represented at the annual event as well.

 

(NEWTON/OLNEY)  The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is reminding regional farmers that while they can apply for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) throughout the year, one application deadline is fast approaching – January 19th, 2018, this coming Friday – farmers are encouraged to submit an application if they are interested in program benefits from the voluntary conservation program – for more details, producers can call or stop by their local NRCS field office or go online for details at  www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/main/il/programs/financial/eqip/.

 

(NEWTON)  The Winter Jasper County Solid Waste Program continues now thru the end of March – the dumpster at the Rose Hill site will be available Wednesday morning from 7:30 until 12:00, or if the dumpster is filled before 10:30, another dumpster will be brought to that location – the Newton / Jasper County Highway Garage location will be open Saturday and every Saturday this month from 7:00 to 3:30 accepting appliances (with requirements) plus the county’s drop-off recycling container also available.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Farm Bureau has several events coming up  :  a Country Crop Insurance Meeting will be held Tuesday evening, January 30th, at The Holiday, starting at 6:00  :  on the following night, Wednesday, January 31st, a two hour On the Road Trucking Seminar will be held beginning at 6:00, also at The Holiday – with the focus on old and new trucking laws, the event is free but advance registration is requested by calling the Richland County Farm Bureau office at  393-4116  by January 24th  :  and on Thursday night, February 1st, a Farm Estate Planning meeting will be held at The Holiday offering farm families the chance to learn how to develop a farm succession plan for their family farm – reservations are requested for the free event, which includes dinner  :  call the Farm Bureau office in Olney at  393-4116.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  All blood donors are encouraged to get out and give blood at their next opportunity – here’s the list of upcoming blood drives in our area  :  today at the Red Brush Christian Church along U.S. Route 45 north of Louisville from 1:30 to 6:30  :  both Wednesday and Thursday at the Blood Donation Center in Effingham from 12:15 to 6:45  :  all blood types and platelets are very much needed.

 

REMINDERS  :
    A fundraising “fish fry” is coming up this Saturday evening at the Claremont Community Club, serving from 5:00 to 7:30 – the cost is $10 per plate – the menu includes fish, baked beans, cole slaw, bread, & dessert – all proceeds go to help with the cost of a mission trip to the Dominican Republic for a local family


    The Olney FFA Alumni has its “pancake & sausage breakfast” this Saturday morning in the RCHS Cafeteria, serving from 6:30 to 12:00 noon – tickets at the door – $6 for adults, $4 for children age 12 & under – proceeds for college scholarships, leadership camps, conferences, & conventions for FFA members


    Integrated Therapy Services in Newton will have its Parent Educational & Support Group meeting tomorrow night at 6:30 at 102 North Jackson Street in Newton – Debi O’Brien, from Equine LEAD, will be the guest speaker – light snacks & drinks provided – it’s a free event, however donations accepted for support – those planning to attend can RSVP to  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  or call  783-PLAY


    The Carle Richland Memorial Hospital Auxiliary has a fundraising “uniform” sale today in the hospital’s private dining rooms, from now until 3:00 – proceeds to help with Auxiliary projects at the hospital

 

 

 

January 13, 2018

 

(OLNEY)  The National Weather Service has issued a Hazardous Weather Outlook for the weekend, calling for cold but dry weather conditions today thru tomorrow afternoon – then another clipper system will move thru with more snow chances Sunday night into Monday morning – while only light snow accumulations are expected, more cold arctic air will move in to dominate most all of next week – wind chill values will stay well below 20 degrees for the next several days and nights – stay tuned for continued weather updates.

 

(OLNEY)  As far as our WVLN-WSEI National Weather Service official Weather Station is concerned – we received right at 2 inches of a mixture of ice, sleet, & snow from Thursday thru yesterday morning – the official melt down was fifty-eight hundredths (0.58) of an inch of precipitation – the breakdown included a third of an inch (0.33) in the form of rain before the temperatures dropped late Thursday night – then a tenth of an inch (0.10) of precipitation was in the form of ice and sleet that fell overnight Thursday thru early Friday morning – the final fifteen hundredths (0.15) of an inch of precipitation was in the form of snow yesterday morning, which officially measured one and a half inches (1.5) – the precipitation measurement event lasted from 12:00 noon Thursday until 6:00 Friday evening here at the south edge of Olney.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  We remind you that all of the cancellations that we receive will be immediately posted on our websites online – simply click on the “weather” tab and scroll down to the list of closings and/or cancellations – that’s at  www.freedom929.comwww.1035theeagle.com,  or  www.wvlnam.com  – also, if traveling the Illinois Department of Transportation has its newly designed website available with updated information on road conditions around the state – available on computers and mobile devices, the website includes the ability to identify and zoom in to specific locations, travel routes, and/or destinations from anywhere within the state – that’s online at  www.GettingAroundIllinois.com – folks can also check out the latest road conditions for Illinois by calling the IDOT road-line, at  1-800-452-4368.

 

(OLNEY/NOBLE/NEWTON)  Due to the extreme weather conditions, yesterday’s sanitary hauling by Republic Services in Olney and the surrounding area is being delayed by one day – therefore, the normal trash pickup for Friday will be made next Monday, weather permitting then – if any further delays occur, that information will be announced here on WVLN-WSEI-WIKK – the public’s cooperation in this matter is much appreciated  :  the City of Olney’s curbside recycling is running on schedule with no delay.

 

(OLNEY)  This is the final weekend of the 2017-2018 Deer Hunting season in Illinois – the Second Late Winter Antlerless-Only Deer Season continues today and ends tomorrow – plus the Illinois Archery Deer & Archery Fall Turkey seasons continue today and end tomorrow – and a reminder that the DNR season calendar begins on April 1st as current hunting and fishing licenses are valid until then – current licenses all expire on March 31st this spring – for all things outdoors in Illinois, go online at  www.dnr.illinois.gov.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  All blood donors are encouraged to get out and give blood at their next opportunity – here’s the list of upcoming blood drives in our area  :  today at the Blood Donation Center in Effingham, each day from 7:45 to 2:15  :  tomorrow morning at the St. Joseph Parish Hall in Stringtown from 7:00 to 11:00  :  Monday at the Red Brush Christian Church along U.S. Route 45 north of Louisville from 1:30 to 6:30  :  all blood types and platelets are much needed to help replenish low area blood supplies.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The Trinity Preschool benefit breakfast is coming up this morning at the Trinity Lutheran Church, at the east edge  of Olney, with serving from now until 12:00 noon – includes pancakes, sausage, biscuits, gravy, sweet breads, & drinks – $6 for adults, $3 for children under 12 – the public is invited

 

 

 

January 12, 2018

 

(OLNEY)  As the storm system moves off to the east, the last of our precipitation will end this afternoon with more arctic air moving in – we’ll then stay dry and cold tonight thru tomorrow night before a clipper system rolls thru with more cold air & some snow, maybe an inch or two for our area – the cold air pattern will continue thru most all of next week as well – stay tuned for continued weather details and updates.

 

(OLNEY)  The National Weather Service has a Winter Weather Advisory in effect until 12:00 noon today, however the cold wintry weather conditions will last long past that – with about a half inch of ice and sleet mixed has been reported on average throughout the region and an additional 1 to 2 inches of snow may fall now thru noon – slick roads will impact travel today – the blustery north / northwest wind will stay strong the next 48 hours, giving us wind chill values around zero the next few nights – then more snow is possible late Sunday night into Monday – plus the cold air and conditions will continue thru most all of next week – stay tuned for more updates as they become available and listen to a NOAA Weather Alert Radio for more.

 

(OLNEY)  As far as our WVLN-WSEI National Weather Service official Weather Station is concerned – we have a half inch of sleet and ice mixed on the ground here at the south edge of Olney – our official melt down measured at forty-three hundredths (0.43) of an inch of precipitation – the breakdown included a third of an inch (0.33) in the form of rain before the temperatures dropped late last night – the remaining one tenth (0.10) of an inch of precipitation was from the ice and sleet that fell overnight thru early this morning – this measurement was for the time period up to 6:00 this morning here at the south edge of Olney.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  We remind you that all of the cancellations that we receive will be immediately posted on our websites online – simply click on the “weather” tab and scroll down to the list of closings and/or cancellations – that’s at  www.freedom929.comwww.1035theeagle.com,  or  www.wvlnam.com  – also, if traveling the Illinois Department of Transportation has its newly designed website available with updated information on road conditions around the state – available on computers and mobile devices, the website includes the ability to identify and zoom in to specific locations, travel routes, and/or destinations from anywhere within the state – that’s online at  www.GettingAroundIllinois.com – folks can also check out the latest road conditions for Illinois by calling the IDOT road-line, at  1-800-452-4368.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news on this Friday – the state has unveiled a new Advanced Placement (AP) pilot program that will give students at rural Illinois high schools access to online AP classes to better prepare them for college – in fact, the AP pilot program kicked off yesterday with classes for 75 students at ten high schools in rural areas across the state – the list includes downstate schools in Altamont, Georgetown, Moweaqua, and Pope County – the goal of the AP pilot program is to provide the same educational opportunities for students in rural parts of the state compared to students in the urban areas of Illinois.

 

(OLNEY/NOBLE/NEWTON)  Due to the extreme weather conditions, today’s sanitary hauling by Republic Services in Olney and the surrounding area will be delayed by one day – therefore, the normal trash pickup for Friday will be made next Monday, weather permitting then – if any further delays occur, that information will be announced here on WVLN-WSEI-WIKK – the public’s cooperation in this matter is much appreciated  :  the City of Olney’s curbside recycling is running on schedule with no delay.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Board met in regular session for only 15 minutes last night in Olney – the Board  :  approved the county claims for December worth $32,612  :  approved the maintenance resolution for MFT funds for the Richland County Highway Department road system  :  approved a revised & updated Sexual Harassment & Misconduct Policy for Richland County, as required by federal law  :  approved the diesel fuel bids from the Wabash Valley Service Company  :  reviewed proposed plans for a new Animal Control facility – initial plans include a groundbreaking in March or April and the project completion by next fall  :  said “thank you” to the Richland County 4-H’ers for providing pizza for supper  :  and had no executive session  :  the next regular monthly Richland County Board meeting will be February 8th.

 

(NEWTON)  The Jasper County Board met in regular session for less than an hour last night in Newton – the Board  :  approved an updated policy on Sexual Harassment & Misconduct  :  approved a resolution directing all Jasper County employees to take Active Shooter and/or Sexual Harassment and Misconduct training when offered  :  approved a resolution noting that each department is responsible for deciding if its respective building needs repairs – the County Building Committee is responsible for the County Office Building, Courthouse, and Jail  :  discussed, but took no action on a raffle ordinance  :  approved all county claims as presented  :  reviewed all reports submitted by the Health Department, Animal Control, and other offices & departments  :  noted the Highway Department is discussing the possibility of purchasing an emulsion storage tank  :  noted that the county audit is continuing and should be presented in full in May  :  the next regular monthly meeting of the Jasper County Board will be February 8th in Newton.

 

(OLNEY)  Today’s the final day to get or reserve your $10 meal tickets for next week’s Annual Meeting of the Richland County Soil & Water Conservation District, coming up next Thursday night, January 18th, at The Holiday in Olney – with the doors opening at 5:30, the buffet meal will be served at 6:00, and the annual business meeting will follow, which includes the election of Directors and more – there will be entertainment and door prizes – there will be no ticket sales at the door next Thursday night – for more information and/or details about the Annual Meeting, call or stop by the SWCD office today in Olney.

 

(NEWTON)  The Winter Jasper County Solid Waste Program continues now thru the end of March – the Newton / Jasper County Highway Garage location will be open tomorrow and every Saturday in January from 7:00 to 3:30 accepting appliances (with requirements) plus the county’s drop-off recycling container is also available – next week’s dumpster site is at the Rose Hill location – that’s next Wednesday from 7:30 until 12:00, or if the dumpster is filled before 10:30, another dumpster will be brought to that location.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  All blood donors are encouraged to get out and give blood at their next opportunity – here’s the list of upcoming blood drives in our area  :  today & tomorrow at the Blood Donation Center in Effingham, each day from 7:45 to 2:15  :  Sunday morning at the St. Joseph Parish Hall in Stringtown from 7:00 to 11:00  :  Monday at the Red Brush Christian Church along U.S. Route 45 north of Louisville from 1:30 to 6:30  :  next Tuesday at the Cowden-Herrick High School from 1:30 to 5:00  :  all blood types and platelets are much needed to help replenish low area and Midwestern blood supplies for those in need.

 

(CLAY CITY)  As of 8:30 this morning, the boil water order for the Village of Clay City and all of its water customers has been lifted - the boil water order in Clay City is no longer in effect - the Village thanks all customers for their patience.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The Trinity Preschool benefit breakfast is coming up tomorrow morning at the Trinity Lutheran Church, at the east edge  of Olney, with serving from 7:00 to 12:00 noon – includes pancakes, sausage, biscuits, gravy, sweet breads, & drinks – $6 for adults, $3 for children under 12 – the public is invited


    It’s another “taco night” tonight at the Olney VFW from 5:30 to 7:30 – open to the public, call in orders can be made for pick up – all proceeds to help with VFW Auxiliary projects and more

 

 

 

January 11, 2018

 

(OLNEY)  It’s one more abnormally warm day on tap before another shot of arctic air returns, preceded by some potentially nasty winter weather – maybe some rain today before the approaching cold front brings us a chance of rain, freezing rain, sleet, & snow early Friday morning, with a wintry mix thru the day tomorrow as well – colder air returns for the weekend and maybe more snow Sunday night – stay tuned for updates.

 

(OLNEY)  The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Weather Advisory in effect from 6:00 tonight until 6:00 Friday morning for Richland, Jasper, and most surrounding counties – with temperatures falling some 30 to 40 degrees by daybreak, the chance is good for freezing rain, sleet, and snow before the break of dawn tomorrow morning – the ice will obviously result in difficult traveling conditions with a total snow accumulation of 1 to 2 inches and up to a tenth of an inch of ice possible – the weather conditions will not improve much thru the day tomorrow with the colder air and a chance of additional light snow, maybe freezing rain and sleet – drivers should be prepared for slippery roads and limited visibilities over the next 48 hours – wind chill values will be below zero each night thru the weekend and maybe more snow chances Sunday night into Monday morning – stay tuned to a NOAA Weather Alert Radio for continued updates.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  With the potential for bad traveling conditions over the next day or two, the Illinois Department of Transportation is reminding motorists to visit and bookmark its newly designed website for continually updated information on road conditions around the state – available on computers and mobile devices, the website includes the ability to identify and zoom in to specific locations, travel routes, and/or destinations from anywhere within the state – that’s online at  www.GettingAroundIllinois.com – folks can also check out the latest road conditions for Illinois by calling the IDOT road-line, at  1-800-452-4368.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news today – following the reduction of the federal corporate tax rate, State Attorney General Lisa Madigan and a bipartisan coalition of 17 state attorneys general, state agencies, and consumer advocates are calling on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to take immediate steps to ensure that public utility companies do not receive a major windfall at the expense of their customers – the call is also requesting an investigation be opened into whether the current rates for electricity, natural gas, and oil are justified – the coalition is specifically concerned about the impact the new federal tax law has on the level of corporate income tax expenses – a response from the FERC is expected by sometime next week.

 

(OLNEY)  The Illinois Department of Natural Resources is extending controlled pheasant hunting seasons at three IDNR sites – hunters can now make reservations for additional hunting opportunities – the three locations include the Eldon Hazlet State Recreation Area along the southeast shore of Carlyle Lake in Clinton County northeast of Carlyle, the Jim Edgar Panther Creek State Fish & Wildlife Area northeast of Virginia or northwest of Springfield in Cass County, and the Wayne Fitzgerrell State Recreation Area along the eastern shore of Rend Lake south of Ina in Franklin & Jefferson Counties – the controlled pheasant hunting at each site has been extended thru January 28th – for more, logon at  www.dnr.illinois.gov.

 

(NEWTON)  State Representative David Reis noted yesterday that a new state audit revealed that Illinois has spent $396 million on taxpayer-funded health insurance for illegal immigrants over an 8 year period – covering All Kids, a program created in the Blagojevich era, provides health care coverage for children, regardless of immigration status – undocumented enrollees are not eligible for federal Medicaid funds, so the entire cost of providing health insurance to illegal immigrants is paid for by Illinois taxpayers – the Ste. Marie native is sponsoring House Bill 4182 that would prohibit illegal immigrants from taking part in most all statewide entitlement programs – while the All Kids program was set to expire July 1st, 2016, the State House approved a three year extension that year on a 77 to 38 vote with Representative Reis voting against the extension – look for plenty of more debate during the upcoming legislative session in Springfield.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Farm Bureau has several events coming up in the weeks ahead  :  a Country Crop Insurance Meeting will be held Tuesday evening, January 30th, at The Holiday, starting at 6:00  :  on the following night, Wednesday, January 31st, a two hour On the Road Trucking Seminar will be held beginning at 6:00, also at The Holiday – with the focus on old and new trucking laws, the event is free but advance registration is requested by calling the Richland County Farm Bureau office at  393-4116  by January 24th  :  and on Thursday night, February 1st, a Farm Estate Planning meeting will be held at The Holiday offering farm families the chance to learn how to develop a farm succession plan for their family farm – reservations are requested for the free event, which includes dinner  :  again, call  618-393-4116.

 

(OLNEY)  A reminder that tickets are now on sale for the 2nd Annual Chocolate Tour, which will be held on Friday, February 9th, from 11:00 to 6:00, in Olney – the $12 per person tickets are available at the Olney & Greater Richland County Chamber of Commerce office or the Olney City Hall during regular office hours – additional information is on the Facebook Event Page : 2nd Annual Olney Chocolate Tour.

 

(NEWTON/OLNEY)  There are two regular monthly meetings coming up tonight  :  the Jasper County Board will have its January meeting tonight at the County Office Building in Newton, starting at 7:00  :  the Richland County Board will have its January meeting tonight in County Jail Meeting Room in Olney, beginning at 7:00 – the Richland County Board’s Finance Committee will meet an hour earlier in the County Jail Meeting Room, starting at 6:00  :  all of the meetings slated for tonight are open to the public.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  All blood donors are encouraged to get out and give blood at their next opportunity – here’s the list of upcoming blood drives in our area  :  today at the Olney VFW from 1:00 to 6:00  :  also today at the Xenia Fire Department from 2:00 to 6:00  :  tomorrow at the Effingham Blood Donation Center from 7:45 to 2:15  :  all blood types & platelets are much needed to help replenish low area blood supplies.

 

(CLAY CITY)  Due to a water main break Wednesday morning, the entire Village of Clay City and all of its water customers are under a boil water order until further notice – again, that boil water order is still in effect for the entire Village of Clay City and its water customers until further notice.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The Trinity Preschool benefit breakfast is coming up this Saturday morning at the Trinity Lutheran Church, at the east edge  of Olney, with serving from 7:00 to 12:00 noon – includes pancakes, sausage, biscuits, gravy, sweet breads, & drinks – $6 for adults, $3 for children under 12 – the public is invited


    It’s another “taco night” tomorrow night at the Olney VFW from 5:30 to 7:30 – open to the public, call in orders can be made for pick up – all proceeds to help with VFW Auxiliary projects and more


    The Jasper County Pregnancy & Infant Loss Support Group will have its monthly meeting this evening at the St. Thomas School in Newton, starting at 6:30 – enter thru the west side, under the big blue awning – anyone can attend – if any questions, email at  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.