LOCAL NEWS

Local News

March 14, 2017

 

(OLNEY)  As a deep upper trough over the Upper Midwest continues to pour cold air into our downstate region today thru tomorrow, a high pressure ridge will move in by tomorrow afternoon, bringing us the start of a slight warm up for the weekend – an approaching cold front could bring some rain Thursday night into Friday, but the weekend is shaping up to be dry – maybe more rain next Monday – stay tuned for updates.

 

(OLNEY)  The National Weather Service has issued a Freeze Warning for Richland, Jasper, and all surrounding counties, in effect now thru 10:00 Thursday morning – while low temperatures dipped well below the freezing mark this morning, the same is expected again tonight and tomorrow night – residents should take the needed precautions to protect sensitive vegetation that has sprouted early in our region.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – a bill has been introduced in Springfield to raise Illinois’ minimum wage to $15 by the year 2022 – the legislation would include an incremental rate increase over a five year period with the first hike from the current $8.25 an hour to $9 by the end of 2018 – new laws have been cited in New York and California to gradually raise the wage there to $15 – look for a lot of debate this spring.

 

(OLNEY)  The Army Corps of Engineers has finished cleaning up three Dakota Access Pipeline protest camps that were on federal land in North Dakota – at least 835 industrial-size trash bins were filled and removed from the site where hundreds of protesters camped out for several weeks – the estimated cost to taxpayers is more than $1.1 million – a judge last week rejected a request from two Indian tribes to stop construction of the final segment of the pipeline that will move oil from North Dakota to Patoka, Illinois.

 

(OLNEY)  The Olney City Council met last night in regular session – the Council  :  amended the budget and approved the $2,200 purchase of new banners for the City of Olney  :  approved a Tourism Grant of up to $2,000 for the White Squirrel Cruisers Car Club 30th Annual Car Show later this year  :  concurred with the bids submitted to IDOT for the improvement, widening, and repaving work to the south end of Whittle Avenue  :  approved the Summer Recreation Fees with no changes from last year  :  approved the two year lease agreement between the City of Olney and the Olney Little League, including the use of the Concession Stand at the Ball Diamond Complex  :  approved two Free Swim Days for the Musgrove Aquatic Center, one for the RCRC Duck Race date & the other for July 4th  :  approved an agreement with the law firm Bruckert, Gruenke, & Long, P.C. for legal services dealing with TIF issues and contracts  :  approved five raffle licenses as requested  :  discussed the 2018 fiscal budget by reviewing the City of Olney’s Water, Sewer, and Tourism Funds  :  and took no action after an executive session to discuss personnel, real estate, and collective negotiations  :  the Olney City Council’s next regular meeting will be Monday, March 27th.

 

(NEWTON)  Illinois State Police District 12 Commander, Captain Cory Ristvedt, has released activity and enforcement figures for the month of February – Troopers answered 150 calls for service & initiated 1,714 incidents in the field – the enforcement figures included 892 citations & 845 written warnings – the stats included 422 tickets for speeding, 122 seat belt citations, 41 criminal arrests, 15 DUI’s, and 2 child restraint citations – Troopers assisted 142 motorists, conducted 329 motor carrier inspections, and investigated 51 traffic crashes, two of which involved fatalities – during February, there were 427 citations and 307 written warnings for the “Fatal Four” violations, those that are most associated with fatal traffic wrecks, including failure to wear a seat belt, DUI, speeding, and distracted driving – the ten District 12 counties include Jasper, Richland, Lawrence, Crawford, Clark, Cumberland, Effingham, Fayette, Clay, and Marion.

 

(OLNEY)  The Southeastern Illinois Friends of NRA is gearing up for its first annual banquet, auction, and raffle this coming Thursday evening, March 16th, at The Holiday in Olney, starting at 5:30 – while all Friends of NRA events provide participants an opportunity to support the charitable goals of the National Rifle Association Foundation & enjoy the fellowship of other law abiding gun owners, the NRA Foundation raises tax deductible contributions in support of a wide range of firearm related public interest activities – for more go online at  www.friendsofnra.org  – for last minute ticket details, call Jeff  at  618-395-8491.

 

(NEWTON)  Here’s some State DNR reminders  :  Illinois fishing, hunting, and sportsmen’s combination licenses and stamps for 2017 are available from DNR Direct license and permit vendors or online thru the IDNR website – the new license year begins in less than three weeks on April 1st  :  the Illinois Fishing Information guide is now available at many DNR license & permit vendor locations, plus online – the regulations in the guide are effective April 1st thru March 31st, 2018  :  and the Illinois Spring Youth Turkey Season is now open two weekends this spring, in both the South & North Zones – that’s March 25th & 26th and April 1st & 2nd – the youth permits are now available over the counter from DNR license & permit vendors  :  for all things outdoors in Illinois, check the DNR website at  www.dnr.illinois.gov.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Republican Central Committee is gearing up for its 28th Annual Lincoln Day Dinner, coming up this Saturday, on March 18th, at the Ole Tyme Steakhause in Olney – with the doors open at 5:00 that evening and the dinner/program starting at 6:00, it will be a great chance to come out to meet and hear from our local and statewide Republicans and elected officials – the $15 tickets are available from any Richland County Precinct Committeeman or email at  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  The Red Cross has an emergency appeal in place, asking all eligible and/or first-time donors to get out and give blood at their next opportunity – upcoming blood drives include  :  today at the YMCA in Mattoon from 2:00 to 6:00  :  also today at the Moose Lodge in Vandalia from 12:00 to 6:00  :  tomorrow at the Blood Donation Center in Effingham from 11:30 to 6:00  :  also tomorrow at the Altamont Elementary School from 2:30 to 6:30  :  Friday at the Clay City High School from 1:00 to 6:00  :  Friday at the Hutsonville High School from 1:30 to 5:30  :  all blood types and platelets are very much needed.

 

(OLNEY)  Tonight is the first of four consecutive Tuesday night agriculture safety courses offered by The Young Leaders of the Richland, Lawrence, and Clay County Farm Bureaus – tonight’s free session is at the Cargill Grain Facility & Warehouse in Flora, starting at 6:30 – area students can register by calling either of the three Farm Bureau Offices in Olney (393-4116), Lawrenceville (943-2610), or Louisville (665-3300).

 

REMINDERS  :
    The Holiday in Olney will host a two-day Craft Show this weekend, both Saturday and Sunday, from 9:00 to 5:00 each day – there will be plenty of booths to visit, including wood crafts, jewelry, wooden flowers, spices, signature home style items, and much, much more – all are invited to attend both days


    The St. Thomas School Music Program has a fundraising Sounds of Swing Concert and Dinner event this Saturday night at the Parish Center in Newton – doors open at 5:30, dinner is at 6:00, & the swing music starts at 7:00 – the cost is $17 per person – call the St. Thomas School at  618-783-3517  for reservations


    The Claremont Community Center will have its annual Carry-Out Chowder this Saturday with serving from 11:00 until sold out at the Community Building in Claremont – along with homemade pies for sale, the bulk chowder will be available for $15 per gallon – remember, no glass containers – all are invited


    The Noble - Wakefield Volunteer Fire Department has its Ham & Bean Feed this Saturday at the Lions Club Building in Noble, with serving from 10:30 to 2:00 – also a raffle with plenty of prizes – all invited


    The Prairie Licking Fire Protection District will host its annual “pancake breakfast” this Saturday with serving from 6:30 to 12:30 – that’s at the Fire House in Annapolis – carry-outs available – all are invited


    The new Lavender Ridge Memory Care facility on North East Street in Olney, will have an informational meeting this coming Thursday evening from 6:30 to 7:30 – all are invited out to tour the new facility


    It’s another community day at Monical’s Pizza – customers can fill out a fundraising form before they pay and 20% of the receipt will be donated to the Richland Memorial Hospital Relay For Life team – for carry-out orders, just mention the fundraiser while ordering – that’s today thru tonight at Monical’s in Olney


    Don’t forget to go to the Governor’s Facebook Page & vote for the Richland County Elementary School in Olney, all part of the Governor’s statewide #GovClassroomVisit tour program – the voting deadline is at 5:00 this Friday afternoon – four other schools are involved to see which one is visited first by the Governor

 

 

 

March 13, 2017

 

(OLNEY)  As a surface low moves eastward thru the Midwest today, we’ll see a good chance of getting up to 1 inch of snow here in the area along & south of  Interstate 70 – then some rain and/or flurries will linger thru this evening – colder air will filter in for a dry Tuesday thru Thursday this week – then our next storm system moves thru Friday and Saturday with a warming trend expected as well – stay tuned for updates.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – Illinois lawmakers are considering expanding the services subject to sales tax – the current list includes eight service categories, ranging from landscaping to hair removal – the services would be taxed at 6.25% and could raise an estimated $291 million per year – while some lawmakers say the idea should also include an income tax hike, members of the statewide business community all object.

 

(OLNEY)  The State House of Representatives last week passed legislation that would allow 16 and 17 year olds to register for the state’s First Person Consent Organ / Tissue Donor Registry when they receive their driver’s license or identification card – while this bill now moves to the State Senate for its consideration, it was nearly a month ago that a similar measure was approved by a Senate Committee – under current law in Illinois, an individual must be at least 18 years old to join the registry – however, 47 other states have already made this change – there are some 4,700 people on an organ transplant waiting list in Illinois.

 

(NEWTON)  It’s today that twelve volunteer linemen, supported by Illinois electric cooperatives, are traveling to Bolivia on a three week project to tackle the electrification of at least 62 homes in four remote mountain villages, plus an orphanage – materials, equipment, and additional labor will be provided by the local Cooperativa Rural De Electrificacion (CRE), which is the largest electric cooperative in the world, serving more than 500,000 members – the project was made possible thru the support of 19 Illinois electric cooperatives – this is not the first time a group from Illinois has supported international electrification efforts – two years ago three Illinois linemen constructed and upgraded power lines in Haiti and a year before that, three Illinois linemen traveled to Guatemala to train line crews on safe operating practices.

 

(OLNEY)  The investigation is continuing into a single vehicle traffic accident that occurred at 3:28 early this past Saturday morning on the Clay City / Dieterich Blacktop, about 3 miles north of Sailor Springs, in Clay County – State Police say that 26 year old Eber Misael Perez-Escalante of Clay City was southbound when his pickup truck ran off the roadway and overturned several times – ejected from the vehicle, Perez-Escalante was taken to Clay County Hospital in Flora then airlifted to Deaconess Hospital in Evansville.

 

(NEWTON)  Area residents are being warned about another scam that is circulating in the downstate region – folks are getting calls from scammers claiming to be an agent with the Internal Revenue Service, telling residents that they owe the IRS delinquent funds and that they will be arrested if they don’t pay immediately – the scammers sound official and are using technology that makes their phone numbers appear to be with the IRS on caller-ID – everyone needs to remember that the IRS never calls taxpayers by phone and never contacts taxpayers by email, ONLY BY MAIL – if such a call is received, residents should simply hang up.

 

(OLNEY)  Don’t forget to go to Governor Bruce Rauner’s Facebook Page & vote for the Richland County Elementary School in Olney – it’s all part of the Governor’s statewide #GovClassroomVisit tour program, where over a hundred schools submitted videos showing the innovative ways in which they are learning – the top five schools will be visited by Governor Rauner later this year and it’s up to the public to go online & vote to see what school is visited first – the other four schools are from Homewood, Bloomingdale, Park Ridge, and New Baden – the voting continues until the deadline, at 5:00 pm this Friday – so go to the Governor’s Facebook Page now and vote often for the Richland County Elementary School in Olney.

 

(OLNEY)  The Young Leaders of the Richland, Lawrence, and Clay County Farm Bureaus are offering free agriculture safety courses over the next four consecutive Tuesday nights at four different locations – all area students are encouraged to attend the specials nights – the first session is tomorrow night at the Cargill Facility in Flora starting at 6:30 – students can register by calling the County Farm Bureau Offices in Olney (393-4116), Lawrenceville (943-2610), or Louisville (665-3300) – the Farm Bureau Young Leaders urge all area youth to attend these safety night courses to learn more about staying safe around the farm.

 

(NEWTON)  All incoming freshmen and their parents in Jasper County are invited to a pre-registration event in the Newton Community High School cafeteria this coming Saturday, March 18th – the “Open House” type of event will run from 9:00 until 3:00 on Saturday, so that attendees can drop by anytime –  students can pre-register for their 2017-2018 classes and have the opportunity to ask questions about high school requirements – the process will take about 30 minutes to complete – students and parents are encouraged to read over the “Freshman Course Handbook” this week, before Saturday’s event, by going online to the NCHS website, at  www.newtoneagles.net  and click on the “Resource Center” tab.

 

(OLNEY)  The Rides Mass Transit District is hosting a “Listening Session” tomorrow afternoon in the Olney Central College Banquet Room, starting at 1:00 – this will give the opportunity for interested persons or agencies to comment about the current services provided and to submit proposals to improve the service and/or routes – for more details, call the Main RIDES Office in Harrisburg, at  618-253-8761, ext. 500312  – again, all in the area are encouraged to attend tomorrow in Olney – RIDES wants to hear from everyone.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  The Red Cross has an emergency appeal in place, asking all eligible and/or first-time donors to get out and give blood at their next opportunity – upcoming blood drives include  :  today at the First Christian Church of Noble from 2:30 to 6:30  :  also today at the Richland County Elementary School in Olney from 2:30 to 7:30  :  and also today at the North Clay High School in Louisville from 2:00 to 6:30  :  tomorrow at the YMCA in Mattoon from 2:00 to 6:00  :  also tomorrow at the Moose Lodge in Vandalia from 12:00 to 6:00  :  all blood types and platelets are very much needed to help replenish low supplies.

 

(OLNEY)  There are a couple of municipal meetings scheduled for this Monday night  :  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, starting at 7:00  :  both of tonight’s meetings are open to the public.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The First Presbyterian Church has its annual St. Patrick’s Dinner this Saturday night with serving from 7:00 to 9:00 – it’s a corned beef and cabbage meal with a drink and dessert, plus hot dogs for children – bulk and carry-out orders available – tickets at the door or in advance by calling the church at  392-6101


    The Claremont Community Center will have its annual Carry-Out Chowder this Saturday with serving from 11:00 until sold out at the Community Building in Claremont – along with homemade pies for sale, the bulk chowder will be available for $15 per gallon – remember, no glass containers – all are invited


    The Rides Mass Transit District has another trip coming up this weekend for the residents in Jasper County – it’s this Saturday, a trip to visit Stoll’s Lakeview Restaurant with some local shopping as well – to schedule a ride, call the RIDES office by 3:00 this Thursday afternoon, at  618-544-8800


    The Noble - Wakefield Volunteer Fire Department will have its Ham & Bean Feed this Saturday at the Lions Club Building in Noble, with serving from 10:30 to 2:00 – also hamburgers, pork burgers, vegetable soup, and desserts – the cost is by donation at the door, plus a chance to win with raffle tickets on sale that day or in advance, priced at $1 each or six for $5 – proceeds for new equipment and firemen training


    The Chauncey Community Club has its “pancake & sausage, biscuits & gravy” meal this Saturday, with serving from 7:00 to 12:15 – the cost is by free-will donation at the door – proceeds for the roofing project


    The Sailor Springs Historical Foundation is celebrating St. Patrick’s Day with a traditional meal this Friday night in the Ruritan Building in Sailor Springs with serving from 5:00 to 7:00 – it’s a brisaquette, cabbage, potatoes, & carrots meal, plus apple dessert & drinks, priced at $7 per plate – carry-outs available


    The new Lavender Ridge Memory Care facility, located just east off of North East Street in Olney, will have an informational meeting open to the public this coming Thursday evening from 6:30 to 7:30 – all are invited out to tour the new facility and to get more information with those in charge of the new operation


    The RMH Auxiliary has another Longaberger fundraiser sale this week in the Heim Room near the front entrance at Richland Memorial Hospital in Olney – that’s today from 8:00 to 4:00 and tomorrow morning from 8:00 to 10:00 – new items will be available for order – proceeds for Auxiliary projects at RMH

 

 

 

March 11, 2017

 

(OLNEY)  An upper level weather system moving towards the Lower Midwest will take most of its snowy conditions south of us into the Ohio River Valley today as most areas north of  U.S. Route 50 will stay dry – there could be some light snow and/or rain, but nothing significant – then high pressure keeps us cold & dry Sunday before another front moves thru with first snow, then rain on Monday – we’re back to near normal temperatures for the rest of the work week with a slight warm up and rain next weekend – listen for updates.

 

(OLNEY)  The National Weather Service has a Freeze Warning in effect from now until 12 noon tomorrow for Richland, Jasper, and most all surrounding counties – everyone should take the needed precautions to protect their flowers, crops, and other sensitive vegetation, especially tonight thru tomorrow morning.

 

(OLNEY)  Don’t forget to go to Governor Bruce Rauner’s Facebook Page & vote for the Richland County Elementary School in Olney – the top-vote-getting school among the five finalists will be visited first by the Governor as he conducts his statewide #GovClassroomVisit learning tour later this year – there were over a hundred schools that submitted an initial video showing the Governor’s Administration the innovative ways that they’re learning – along with RCES in Olney, the other four finalists includes schools from Homewood, Bloomingdale, Park Ridge, and New Baden – the voting continues around the clock from now until the final deadline, which is at 5:00 next Friday evening, March 17th – so tell your family & friends to go online now & vote for the Richland County Elementary School in Olney – that’s on the Governor’s Facebook Page.

 

(OLNEY)  The Young Leaders of the Richland, Lawrence, and Clay County Farm Bureaus are offering free agriculture safety courses over the next four consecutive Tuesday nights at four different locations – local and area students are welcome to attend one or all of the specials nights within the three county region – the first session is next Tuesday, March 14th, at the Cargill Facility in Flora, in Clay County, starting at 6:30 – students can register by calling either of the three County Farm Bureau Offices in Olney (618-393-4116), Lawrenceville (618-943-2610), or Louisville (618-665-3300) – Farm Bureau Young Leaders encourage all area youth to attend these safety night courses to learn more about staying safe in and around the farm.

 

(NEWTON/OLNEY)  The Red Cross has an emergency appeal in place, asking all eligible and/or first-time donors to get out and give blood at their next opportunity – upcoming blood drives include  :  tomorrow morning at the St. Joseph Parish Center in Stringtown from 7:00 to 11:00  :  Monday at the First Christian Church of Noble from 2:30 to 6:30  :  also next Monday at the Richland County Elementary School in Olney from 2:30 to 7:30  :  all blood types and platelets are very much needed to replenish low supplies.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The RMH Auxiliary has another Longaberger fundraiser sale next week in the Heim Room near the front entrance at Richland Memorial Hospital in Olney – that’s Monday from 8:00 to 4:00 and Tuesday morning from 8:00 to 10:00 – new items will be available for order – proceeds for Auxiliary projects at RMH


    A reminder from the City of Olney – city crews will next week begin mowing and spring maintenance at Haven Hill Cemetery, Maple Dale Cemetery, and Haven Hill Memorial Garden – those who’d like to keep any ground decorations should have them picked up by tomorrow, on Sunday, March 12th


    The Jasper County Annual Shrine Dance is tonight with 13 area businesses hosting various bands & food specials starting at 8:00 – a single $10 ticket will get folks a free huggie and allows them entrance to any of the 13 locations taking part – all proceeds to help the children served by Shriners throughout the area


    The Newton Central Christian Church will host a Saturday night prime rib dinner with serving from 5:00 to 8:00 tonight – for details, for carry-outs, or for deliveries, call  618-783-3526  – proceeds will go to the Jasper County Cancer Support Group and help with our local and area fight against cancer


    The West Salem Masonic Lodge 866 will host a fundraising “fish fry” and silent auction this evening with serving to start at 5:00 – that’s at the Fire House in West Salem – all are invited to attend 


    The Olney Extreme 12 & Under Traveling Softball team has a fundraising pork burger & bake sale today at the Olney IGA with serving from 10:30 to 1:30, or until everything is gone – thanks for your support


    Everyone’s reminded to set those clocks forward one hour before going to bed tonight as Daylight Saving Time officially takes affect at 2:00 early tomorrow morning – so move those clocks up one hour tonight

 

 

 

March 10, 2017

 

(OLNEY)  Much cooler temperatures are expected across our downstate area for the next few days & nights – while we’ll stay dry this Friday with plenty of sunshine, the first wave of approaching wintry weather moves thru tomorrow with light amounts of snow expected – then after a dry, but cold day on Sunday, we’ll have a snow/rain mixture on Monday, staying cooler thru most of next week – stay tuned for updates.

 

(OLNEY)  The National Weather Service has issued an extended Freeze Warning with nightly temperatures expected below the freezing mark this weekend – the Freeze Warning, in effect for Richland, Jasper, and all other surrounding counties, runs from 6:00 this evening, all the way thru 12 noon on Sunday – homeowners and others should take the needed precautions to protect their flowers, crops, and other sensitive vegetation.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – Illinois’ unemployment rate held at 5.7% in January and non-farm payrolls increased by over 1,700 jobs, based on preliminary data released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics – the state’s joblessness rate is down from 6.1% in January 2016 – Illinois’ number is higher than the national unemployment rate reported for January 2017, which increased to 4.8% – the three industry sectors with the largest employment gains in January were construction, trade & transportation, and financial activities – the largest payroll declines were in leisure & hospitality, professional & business services, and government.

 

(OLNEY)  The Illinois Department of Agriculture is now accepting proposals for federal specialty crop grants – the IDOA anticipates Illinois will receive roughly $525,000 from the USDA to distribute to state projects, but the exact dollar amount has yet to be determined – the funds will be used for the production of specialty crops, such as fruits, vegetables, tree nuts, dried fruit, & more – plus other funds are for roadside stands, farmers’ markets, & community-based agriculture programs – grant proposals will be accepted until April 28th – for a proposal packet and more, logon at  www.agr.state.il.us/specialty-crop-grants.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Board met last night for its regular monthly meeting in Olney – the Board  :  approved county claims for the month of February worth $77,526  :  approved late claims for February worth $823  :  approved the rock, gravel, and road oil bids for Richland County as presented  :  accepted the bid for the Bonpas Township Bridge project  :  approved the culvert aid petition for Madison Township  :  accepted the culvert replacement proposal along East Berryville Lane  :  approved the design & inspection services for four township bridges, including those carrying Gadde Bridge Lane over Sugar Creek, Hurricane Lane over Coon Creek, Ebenezer Lane over Bonpas Creek, and Calhoun Lane over Hog Run  :  agreed to develop a Richland County website within the next year to highlight county offices and services available  :  discussed holding an “open house” at the Courthouse on a yet to be set date in May  :  approved the annual agreement with the Greater Wabash Regional Planning Commission for grant writing services  :  approved the yearly Liquor Licenses for the Fox Creek Vineyard and Berryville Vineyard  :  agreed to proceed with a Maintenance Schedule for the Courthouse  :  noted an upcoming County Surplus Sale will be on the county property just south of the current Master’s Hands’ building, just off of West Main Street – starting at 10:00 on the morning of Saturday, March 18th, the sale will feature used highway department items, plus courthouse office equipment and much more  :  said “thank you” to the Berryville Junior Farmers 4-H Club for providing supper to the board  :  and took no other action after a lengthy closed session to discuss negotiations  :  the next regular meeting for the Richland County Board is April 13th.

 

(NEWTON)  The Jasper County Board met last night for its regular monthly meeting in Newton – the Board  :  approved a resolution to appoint Ben Bland as the Joint County Engineer, serving both Jasper and Cumberland Counties – the employment and intergovernmental agreements were also both approved  :  approved the Ambulance Department’s schedule change as presented, which includes personnel hiring, scheduling, and other requirements  :  approved the $689 purchase of a new email server  :  discussed the Jasper County’s 200th birthday coming up next year along with possible grant available to help fund the various year-long activities  :    reviewed the different reports submitted, including Animal Control, Health Department, County Clerk, and others  :  agreed to purchase storage racks and more for the County Clerk’s office worth $5,479  :  and noted a special committee meeting on March 21st to discuss ATV permits  :  the next regular monthly meeting for the Jasper County Board will be Thursday night, April 13th.

 

(OLNEY)  A Richland County school is one of five statewide schools to be chosen for a special honor – Governor Bruce Rauner announced yesterday the finalists of the #GovClassroomVisit learning tour, noting that more than a hundred schools submitted videos to show the Administration the innovative ways they were learning – the finalists of the special statewide program will be posted on the Governor’s Facebook Page for the public to vote on which school the Governor visits first – the five finalist schools include the Richland County Elementary School in Olney, the Maine East High School in Park Ridge, the Stratford Middle School in Bloomingdale, the Elementary School in New Baden, & the Homewood Flossmoor High School in Homewood – the school with the most votes will be the first stop on the #GovClassroomVisit learning tour – voting is now underway and will end at 5:00pm a week from today, on Friday, March 17th.

 

(NEWTON)  The Jasper County Elementary PTO Basket Bingo is tonight in the Newton Community High School Gym – the doors open at 5:30 and the games begin at 6:30 – there will be concessions, a 50/50 drawing, theme baskets, and Newton Eagle apparel for sale – some of the great prizes up for grabs are Holiday World tickets, St. Louis Cardinals tickets, an HP touchscreen laptop, an Ipad mini, a boutique basket, a shop local basket, and much more – everyone is welcome out this Friday night for some great family fun, a chance to win, and to support the PTO and its work for Jasper County students.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Senior Center is hosting another fish fry / salad bar meal today in downtown Olney – open to the public, the cost is $5 per person, with serving from 11:00 to 1:30 – while walk-in’s are welcome and carry-outs will be available, call ahead orders are appreciated at  618-395-3223 – all proceeds will help the Richland County Senior Center’s with its future funding for local programs.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  Registered voters are reminded that Early Voting is now being conducted in County Clerks’ Offices for the upcoming April 4th Consolidated Election – if residents desire to vote early for any or no reason, they can vote in person at the County Clerk’s Offices from 8:00 to 4:00 each Monday thru Friday – no appointments are necessary – the last day for Early Voting is Monday, April 3rd, the day before the April 4th election – for more voting details, contact your Clerk’s Office in Newton, Olney, or elsewhere.

 

(NEWTON/OLNEY)  The Red Cross has an emergency appeal in place, asking all eligible and/or first-time donors to get out and give blood at their next opportunity – upcoming blood drives include  :  today at the Effingham Blood Donation Center from 7:00 to 2:00  :  Sunday morning at the St. Joseph Parish Center in Stringtown from 7:00 to 11:00  :  Monday at the Noble First Christian Church from 2:30 to 6:30  :  also next Monday at the Richland County Elementary School in Olney from 2:30 to 7:30  :  all blood types needed.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The Jasper County Annual Shrine Dance is this Saturday night with 13 area businesses hosting various bands & food specials starting at 8:00 – a single $10 ticket will get folks a free huggie and allows them entrance to any of the 13 locations taking part – all proceeds to help the children served by Shriners


    The Newton Central Christian Church will host a Saturday night prime rib dinner with serving from 5:00 to 8:00 – for details, for carry-outs, or for deliveries, call  618-783-3526  – proceeds will go to the Jasper County Cancer Support Group and help with our local and area fight against cancer


    The West Salem Masonic Lodge 866 will host a fundraising “fish fry” and silent auction tomorrow evening with serving to start at 5:00 – that’s at the Fire House in West Salem – all are invited to attend


    The Knights of Columbus Friday night “fish fry” is tonight at the Olney City Park Community Building with serving from 5:30 to 7:30 – carry-outs available – all are invited to wear “orange” to show awareness of Multiple Sclerosis – the local Join the Movement committee will be serving – all are invited


    It’s another Friday night fish fry at the Claremont Fire House with serving from 4:30 to 7:00 with plenty of fish, a baked potato bar, and all-you-can-eat ice cream – pay at the door – carry-outs available – all sponsored by the Claremont-Bonpas Volunteer Firemen – all ages are invited out this Friday night

 

    And everyone’s reminded to set those clocks forward one hour before going to bed this Saturday night as Daylight Saving Time officially takes affect at 2:00 this Sunday morning – it’s all to make better use of the natural daylight over the next seven-plus months – so move those clocks up one hour tomorrow night

 

 

 

March 9, 2017

 

(OLNEY)  A weak cool front that pushed south across Illinois last night has settled in the downstate area – meanwhile an approaching surface low from the southwest will bring us our next chance of rain, with some storms possible later on tonight – after a dry & cooler Friday, another weather system moves in with some snow showers Saturday morning – then after a dry Sunday, it’s more precip on Monday – listen for updates.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – a judge has ruled that the Illinois Comptroller can direct which accounts should be used to pay state employees – that decision is against Governor Bruce Rauner, who said workers should be paid from the state’s general revenue fund – Comptroller Susana Mendoza says the employees should be paid from the state’s CMS garage and maintenance funds, where some $93 million is available.

 

(OLNEY)  The first woman to be promoted to Brigadier General in the Illinois National Guard is retiring – Alicia Tate-Nadeau is stepping down after her 32 years in the military while serving in a variety of positions around the world – the Illinois native made the history books in 2015 when promoted to Brigadier General – she will now be joining the Reserve Officer Training Corps at Southwestern Oklahoma State University.

 

(NEWTON)  Governor Bruce Rauner is being urged to restore the state’s Commission on Discrimination and Hate Crimes to combat a troubling increase in hate crimes around Illinois – in fact, several officials around the state are encouraging the Governor to immediately appoint a diverse group of individuals to fill the 20 vacant positions on the Commission, which is mandated to coordinate efforts to battle unlawful acts.

 

(OLNEY)  The Rides Mass Transit District will be hosting a “Listening Session” next Tuesday afternoon, March 14th, in the Olney Central College Banquet Room, starting at 1:00 – this will give the opportunity for interested persons or agencies to comment about the current services provided and to submit proposals to improve the service and/or routes – those interested can submit orally, or in writing, any comments – this can be done in person next Tuesday afternoon, by call the Main RIDES Office at  618-253-8761, extension 500312, or by mailing to RIDES Mass Transit District, at 30 Veterans Drive, in Harrisburg, Illinois, zip code 62946 – again, all in the area are encouraged to comment – RIDES wants to hear from everyone.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  Registered voters are reminded that Early Voting is now being conducted in County Clerks’ Offices for the upcoming April 4th Consolidated Election – if residents desire to vote early for any or no reason, they can vote in person at the County Clerk’s Offices from 8:00 to 4:00 each Monday thru Friday – no appointments are necessary – the last day for Early Voting is Monday, April 3rd, the day before the April 4th election – for more voting details, contact your Clerk’s Office in Newton, Olney, or elsewhere.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Elementary School has its Pre-K and Kindergarten Screenings coming up later this month – that’s three weeks from today, on Thursday, March 30th, from 12:00 to 6:00, and the following Friday, March 31st, from 8:00 to 2:00, all by appointments only – it’s for children at least 3 years old in the Richland County School District – representatives from ERBA Head Start and KidZone programs will also be present – for more details or for that needed appointment, call Sherry at RCES  :  395-8540.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  Area residents should stay vigilant in the fight against circulating scams – remember that the State Police and Ameren Illinois will never call, threatening jail time or utility shut-offs due to what the scammer claims are criminal investigations and/or unpaid utility bills – if you or others you know get such a call and are threatened in this way, remember IT IS A SCAM – do not give out personal information and do not make plans for a quick payment as requested – simply hang up and call your local authorities.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Republican Central Committee is gearing up for its 28th Annual Lincoln Day Dinner, coming up a week from this Saturday, on March 18th, at the Ole Tyme Steakhause in Olney – with the doors open at 5:00 that evening and the dinner/program starting at 6:00, it will be a great chance to come out to meet and hear from our local and statewide Republicans and elected officials – the $15 tickets are available from any Richland County Precinct Committeeman or email at  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Soil & Water Conservation District will have its annual “fish sale” on March 28th – orders are being taken now for the various species available at the office during regular hours thru March 24th – although grass carp orders are needed by the close of office hours tomorrow, March 10th – call or stop by the Richland County Soil & Water Conservation District office in Olney.

 

(NEWTON)  The Jasper County Elementary PTO Basket Bingo is tomorrow night in the Newton Community High School Gym – the doors open at 5:30 and the games begin at 6:30 – there will be concessions, a 50/50 drawing, theme baskets, and Newton Eagle apparel for sale – some of the great prizes up for grabs are Holiday World tickets, St. Louis Cardinals tickets, an HP touchscreen laptop, an Ipad mini, a boutique basket, a shop local basket, and much more – everyone is welcome out this Friday night for some great family fun, a chance to win, and to support the PTO and its work for Jasper County students.

 

(OLNEY)  In an attempt to get their doors back opened five days a week, the Richland County Senior Center is hosting another fried fish / salad bar meal tomorrow in downtown Olney – open to the public at the cost at $5 per person, it’s serving from 11:00 to 1:30 – while walk-in’s are welcome and carry-outs will be available, call ahead orders are appreciated at  618-395-3223 – all proceeds will help the Richland County Senior Center’s with its future funding to help keep the doors and programs open to local seniors.

 

(NEWTON/OLNEY)  The Red Cross has an emergency appeal in place, asking all eligible and/or first-time donors to get out and give blood at their next opportunity – upcoming blood drives include   :  today at the Olney VFW from 1:00 to 6:00  :  tomorrow at the Effingham Blood Donation Center from 7:00 to 2:00  :  Sunday morning at the St. Joseph Parish Center in Stringtown from 7:00 to 11:00  :  Monday at the Noble First Christian Church from 2:30 to 6:30  :  and also next Monday at the Richland County Elementary School in Olney from 2:30 to 7:30  :  all blood types and platelets are needed to replenish low supplies.

 

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

 

REMINDERS  :
    The RMH Auxiliary has another Longaberger fundraiser sale next week in the Heim Room near the front entrance at Richland Memorial Hospital in Olney – that’s Monday from 8:00 to 4:00 and Tuesday morning from 8:00 to 10:00 – new items will be available for order – proceeds for Auxiliary projects at RMH


    The Jasper County Annual Shrine Dance is this Saturday night with 13 area businesses hosting various bands & food specials starting at 8:00 – a single $10 ticket will get folks a free huggie and allows them entrance to any of the 13 locations taking part – all proceeds to help the children served by Shriners


    The Newton Central Christian Church will host a Saturday night prime rib dinner with serving from 5:00 to 8:00 – for details, for carry-outs, or for deliveries, call  618-783-3526  – proceeds will go to the Jasper County Cancer Support Group and help with our local and area fight against cancer


    The West Salem Masonic Lodge 866 will host a fundraising “fish fry” and silent auction this Saturday evening with serving to start at 5:00 – that’s at the Fire House in West Salem – all are invited to attend


    Rides Mass Transit is offering another trip for Jasper County residents – it’s a trip to Effingham this Friday night for fish supper at Ryan’s Restaurant – call the Newton RIDES office to schedule a ride by 3:00 today, on this Thursday, at  618-544-8800  – information about pick up times and more will be provided


    The Knights of Columbus Friday night “fish fry” is tomorrow night at the Olney City Park Community Building with serving from 5:30 to 7:30 – carry-outs available – all are invited to wear “orange” to show awareness of Multiple Sclerosis – the local Join the Movement committee will be serving – all are invited


    Tickets for the production of “The Little Mermaid” at Olney Central College are now on sale at the ticket box office, Monday thru Friday from 10:00 to 2:00 each day – or online at  www.iecc.edu/occtheater