Five communities in Shelby County have joined together to undertake a county wide “Main Street Makeover” this weekend. The event is designed to help clean up and increase the curb appeal of the downtown areas in those participating communities, in an effort to make Shelby County a more attractive county for residents, visitors, and potential businesses.
Anna Kiley, Economic Development Director for Shelby County said the communities are doing everything they can to improve the exterior appearance of the businesses in the participating communities, to help entice customers out of their cars and into the businesses.
The event is utilizing volunteers to help make the event happen. Several businesses have stepped up to assist with the volunteers, from helping with the work, to providing food and beverages to help fuel the volunteer effort.
Kiley wanted to thank those involved for making the event happen, saying even businesses who don’t benefit directly from the makeover are stepping up to help out.
Shelby County Partners group is sponsoring the event.
Shelbyville Memorial Hospital recently became HSHS Good Shepherd Hospital, and part of the reasoning behind the merger was to give the hospital the ability to expand their services and improve the level of care for their patients.
Glenda Plunkett with HSHS Good Shepherd hospital said the merger have already resulted in lives being saved in Shelby County, as well as bringing in new technologies to the hospital.
The telemedicine program lets doctors all across the country have 24/7 access to patients at HSHS Good Sphered Hospital who need it. Plunkett said the first time they utilized the program, the doctor although from California, had a Shelbyville connection.
Plunkett appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show live from our Downtown Shelbyville Studios.
The Shelbyville School District are looking forward at what they can offer students in the future. The district recently had three board members re-elected, and have a slate of projects lined up to help improve the facilities in the district for the staff and students in Shelbyville.
Denise Bence, Superintendent with the Shelbyville School District appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show live from our Downtown Shelbyville Studios, and said she's happy with the school district's board of education, and thinks they have great people in place.
The end of the school year is on the horizon, and the Shelbyville School District has several projects ready to go, such as new siding on the temporary buildings at the Main Street School. Bense discussed one project that she's excited about, due to the effort put forth from the Shelbyville students. The auditorium at Shelbyville High will be getting some renovations, with the curtains set to be the first upgrade.
Bence said the students helped with the fund raising to replace the curtains, and have several other projects in mind to help make Shelbyville High School a better place to learn.
Last year the Illinois Legislature passed the Illinois Criminal Justice Reform act, which went into effect January 1st. The act expands the required training for those training to be law enforcement officers throughout the state.
Shelby County Under-sheriff Rob McCall appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show live from our Downtown Shelbyville studios to discuss how the act has affected law enforcement in Shelby County. The act has meant better trained officers, who can serve the public better.
Many have a misunderstanding of what the police academy is really like. This act added mandatory training for officers in areas the public might not expect, such as more civil rights training.
McCall said the majority of the police academy is much different than the stereotypical view of the academy, with a majority of the training taking place in the classroom.
Congressmen Rodney Davis, Darin LaHood and State Representative Tim Butler toured Route 66 communities in Central Illinois Wednesday. Davis talks about federal legislation preparing for the 100th Anniversary of Route 66 in 2026.
Davis referred to State Representative Avery Bourne who joined Davis earlier in the week for another Route 66 tour. Butler introduced legislation establishing a state Illinois Route 66 Centennial Commission.
Area superintendents from northwest Illinois are gathering this week to provide a common voice. All are in the same boat, expressing concern about delayed payments—mainly from categorical funds like transportation—which really impact rural school districts that have large geographic areas to cover. Scott Petrie is superintendent of the Mercer County School District and they’re currently owed $800,000 from the state.
Petrie along with other superintendents throughout northwest Illinois participated in a joint press conference on Thursday with first year State Representative Tony McCombie of Savanna.
The odds of Comptroller Susana Mendoza making the cut on the Rauner family greeting card list shrink by the day. Mendoza continues to call for Governor Bruce Rauner and lawmakers to reach a budget agreement before the state gets hit with additional credit downgrades. She continues to make hay out of analysis from a political website on Rauner's claims he he has delivered a balanced budget proposal.
Some analysts maintain the Governor provided a budget that would be balanced if certain conditions were met.
It's a jittery time in America with talk of growing nuclear capability for North Korea. Congressman Rodney Davis says President Trump is on target with recent moves involving the world's two biggest hot spots of the moment.
Davis says swift action by President Trump and the military after Syria's chemical attack on civilians sent a clear message to the world that America will not tolerate the use of chemical weapons.
The Greater Taylorville Chamber of Commerce just wrapped up another successful Business After Hours event. This month's event was a bit of a last minute addition as the Chamber had to move the event to Alexander Lumber from the original location of Lifes Journey Senior Living due to unfinished renovations at Lifes Journey.
Patty Hornbuckle, CEO of the Greater Taylorville Chamber of Commerce said even with the short time frame to put the event together, it went on without a hitch.
Hornbuckle spoke highly of Alexander Lumber, saying if you haven't been there recently, make a point to go in.
Hornbuckle appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.
Students wishing to get a better idea of what the college life is like and start to get an idea of what they'd like to do in life can get the opportunity to do just that with the Illini Summer Academy. During the Academy, students will have the chance to live on the University of Illinois Campus and study one of the offered subjects in the program.
Alicia Gullidge, 4-H Youth and Program Coordinator with the Christian County Extension Office appeared on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show and discussed the program, saying it's a way to give youth a first hand look at the college life.
The event takes place in June, and the deadline to register is in May. The Academy gives students the opportunity to get a glimpse at a number of different career options.
For a complete list of offered subjects with the Illini Summer Academy, as well as to register your child, contact your local extension office.
The Sangamon County Coroner’s office has recently confirmed carfentanil in two toxicology reports from overdose cases in the county. According to information from the Forensic division of NMS Labs, Carfentanil is a drug used to immobilize large animals, and is not approved for human use. It is estimated to be approximately 10,000 times more potent than morphine and 100 times more potent than fentanyl. In mid-2016 carfentanil appeared in the illicit drug market, usually mixed with heroin, fentanyl or another opioid compound. Its effects include analgesia and central nervous system depression.
There have been reports of numerous fatalities across the US from this drug, and the lifesaving administration of Narcan to a person overdosing on an opiate will most likely be ineffective if Carfentanil is present in their system. The Sangamon County Coroner’s office has had approximately 18 deaths this year due to opiate overdoses. They are constantly aware and concerned with both illicit and prescription opiate use.
Farmers have been a bit worried about getting into the field because of rains throughout the Midwest. It looks like those will clear out for the week, mostly, and even if they don't, there isn't much to worry about, yet.
Farmers have been itching to go to the field. They want to plant corn in the Midwest. There's also some rumblings about delayed planting. That's a little hard to swallow in mid-April says University of Illinois agricultural economist Todd Hubbs.
Hubbs is an agricultural economist at the University of Illinois. He's looked at the stats and the historical record. He says it is pretty concise…tape
It's a correlation that won't happen for about a month if it happens at all…tape
That’s University of Illinois agricultural economist Todd Hubbs.
Governor Bruce Rauner is moving. The move is connected to the repair and renovation of the Governor’s mansion in Springfield. So that has Rauner shifting residences to the state fairgrounds where he will now live in the house that’s for the state’s director of Agriculture.
The work on the Governor’s mansion is expected to last about year and cost about $15 million. The repairs are being funded by private donations.
A 30,000 gallon LP tank hit by lightning in western Illinois. It happened Wednesday morning as a storm rolled through the Gold Star FS plant—east of Aledo. Aledo Fire Chief Dennis Litwiler says thankfully, there were no injuries or major damage.
A portion of Illinois Route 17 was shut down for two hours as emergency responders handled the situation. The lightning strike caused a pressure relief valve to release and Litwiler says there’s no way to shut that off without emptying the tank.
State lawmakers have a little over a month to put together a budget deal. But the prospects for a compromise aren’t too promising says Kevin Semlow—Director of State Legislation for the Illinois Farm Bureau.
And Semlow says the debate continues to be “make cuts” or “raise taxes”.
State lawmakers return from a two-week break next Monday and will be in session through the end of May.
Another new business is opening in Taylorville. Southern Ledge Pools and Patios opens for business soon and will be offering services with your pools and outdoor patio needs.
Teresa Wiltsie, President of Southern Ledge Pools and Patios spoke with Regional Radio News and said the company will be able to help you with your outdoor pools and patios, whether it’s installing an above or in ground pool, or servicing your pools.
Southern Ledge isn’t just limited to pools. If you’d like a unique patio, whether that means an outdoor pizza oven or complete outdoor kitchen, Southern Ledge can handle it.
Wiltsie said to expect Southern Ledge’s pricing to be very competitive with similar businesses in Springfield and Decatur, and will also offer delivery of necessary chemicals for your pool.
Southern Ledge will have a storefront location at 306 East Main Cross in Taylorville, and will have various displays and pictures of what they offer available. Wiltsie also said if Southern Ledge doesn’t have something that a customer may want, they will work to bring that item to their store.
April is Autism Awareness Month and a group in Central Illinois is working to help families with a child or family member with the condition. The Autism Society of Central Illinois works to increase awareness of the disorder, as well as providing activities and events to help families cope.
Tom Becker with the Autism Society of Central Illinois appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show and said the ASCM works to improve the lives of families dealing with autism, and highlighted an upcoming fundraiser event the group is putting on.
Dealing with autism is a constant and never-ending battle for families, where families are constantly managing and trying to find ways to mitigate the disease.
If you would like to learn more about Autism as well as the Autism Society of Central Illinois, as well as donate to the group, and find a complete list of upcoming events, visit them online at autismcil.org.
The Friends of the Taylorville Public Library are inviting the public to attend a presentation and book signing with Claudia Quigg Thursday at 7pm at the Taylorville Public Library. Quigg is the founder of Baby TALK, and serves as an adjunct assistant professor at Millikin University.
Quigg writes a weekly newspaper column titled “Let’s Talk Kids”, records a weekly Illinois NPR segment, and has published three books for parents. She has stated that her goal in writing is to affirm parent’s best instincts with their children.
Her presentation and book signing will take place in the Community Room of the library, and will feature excerpts from her three books, with a preview of her forthcoming fourth book as well.
Many people looking to invest their money are looking to do so in emerging, overseas markets where stocks are trading much lower than in the United States, but have potential for huge growth. Some of these markets include China and India, where investors are looking for the best value stocks they can find.
WTIM Investment Professional Steve Henry said the term “emerging” is a bit of a misnomer, as many of these markets have already emerged, but still offer the possibility of large returns on relatively small investments.
Another market that Henry suggests people may want to look at is Russia. Russia is in the process of coming out of a recession, and could offer large returns in the future.
WTIM Investment Professional Steve Henry appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.
The American Petroleum Institute is concerned about the future of the Renewable Fuel Standard, a federal program requiring transportation fuel sold in the United States to contain a minimum volume of renewable fuels that was enacted in 2005. The API says the standard creates an unnecessary burden on the American consumer, and wants to see the federal government revisit the issue.
Frank Macchiarola with the American Petroleum Institute appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show to discuss the Renewable Fuels Standard, and said the standard could have potential costs impacts to consumers at the gas station. The API would like to see policy makers in Washington re-visit the Renewable Fuels Standard.
Macchiarola pointed out that several other industries are concerned about the future of the Renewable Fuels Standard, such as various groups in the agriculture industry.
Macchiarola did say that generally the agriculture industry has been a supporter of the Renewable Fuels Standard, and that he would like to see more discussion within the ag community about the possible pros and cons of the mandate.
Democratic gubernatorial candidate JB Pritzker visited with representatives of the Illinois Coalition for Community Services at Springfield's Pilgrim Rest Missionary Baptist Church to discuss the impact of a lack of a state budget. Pritzker said Governor Rauner's turnaround agenda isn't turning around the state's fortunes.
While House Speaker Mike Madigan is absorbing much of the blame, Pritzker says Madigan has a track record of getting budgets done when the Governor isn't with the same party.
Illinois Coalition for Community Services provides programs for youth in need at the church.
Attorneys for former Governor Rod Blagojevich are once again seeking to cut his fourteen year prison term. Blagojevich's attorneys argued Tuesday before the Chicago based 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that the Democrat's record of good behavior since entering prison five years ago calls for a shortened sentence. Prosecutors object to the request, noting Blagojevich has never admitted committing major crimes.The three-judge panel will rule in the coming months.
Some warm temperatures for much of Illinois in the middle portion of this week with readings in the 70’s and 80’, but that will change moving toward the weekend. Meteorologist Eric Schmidt is with EJS Weather in Newton.
Schmidt anticipates more wet weather for Saturday for much of central and southern Illinois.
Action on amending the Illinois Livestock Management Facilities Act is on hold for now. Although the legislation was announced earlier this year, movement has stalled at this time says Bill Bodine the associate director of state legislation for the Illinois Farm Bureau.
Bodine says the legislation is not dead it’s just likely being fine-tuned by Koehler before being brought back to committee. The Illinois General Assembly returns to session next week.
The Christian County Board held their regularly scheduled meeting on Tuesday night at the Christian County Board Room in the Christian County Courthouse. The meeting had a notably friendlier tone than March’s County Board Meeting, as the County Board discussed various issues ranging from some needed repairs to several county facilities and buildings, to taking an initial look at the county’s FY18 budget.
County Board Chair Tim Carlson spoke with WTIMTV following the meeting to further discuss these issues. One issue the county is looking to address is problems with the air conditioning units at the Christian County Courthouse. The current units tend to freeze over, which then causes leaks in the States Attorney’s office. The board is looking to make repairs to the unit, and Carlson says with the age of the courthouse, the board will continue to look to make needed repairs moving forward.
The board also took an initial look at the FY18 budget for the county. The county Finance Committee is proposing cuts in various department budgets ranging from 3 to 5 percent in an effort to correct the county’s budget deficit.
The board also reviewed and adopted ordinances to create policies for the use and sale of fireworks in the county. Carlson says the county will now issue permits to those wishing to sell fireworks.
The permits will have a $25 administrative fee payable to the county clerk, as well as a fee of $25 paid and deposited into the county’s general fund.
Officials from Quad County Home Health Care, spoke at Tuesday's Taylorville Kiwanis Club meeting. From the left: Kiwanis program chairperson Patty Hornbuckle; Carol Chandler, director, Quad County Home Health Care; Maureen Tarrant, Home Health/Hospice Nurse, Quad County; Larry Simon, Respatory Therapist, Quad County; Kiwanis president Will Perkins.
QUAD COUNTY HOME HEALTH FEATURED AT TAYLORVILLE KIWANIS MEETING TUESDAY
The Taylorville Kiwanis Club heard about the many services offered by Quad County Home Health Services based at Pana Community Hospital, during its weekly luncheon at the Taylorville Memorial Hospital auditorium.
Carol Chandler, executive director of Quad County Home Health, along with Maureen Tarrant and Larry Simon, spoke about the many services offered. Chandler said their agency serves patients in Christian, Shelby, Fayette and Montgomery Counties with home health care, hospice, and medical equipment. She added that their patients served has tripled in the past 2 years.
Tarrant said the level of health care has changed at home over the years, with more given at home instead of the hospital.
And, Simon reviewed the many medical equipment choices offered by Quad County, including new models of C-PAP machines for those with sleep apnea.
Chandler also shared with Taylorville Kiwanis members, about a new hospice program Quad County offers called “No Veteran Will Die Alone”, which their agency offers personal veteran-to-veteran visits and visits from their music therapist among services offered terminally ill veterans.
Kiwanis members are reminded of annual Kiwanis Prayer Luncheon May 9th, and the May 16th dinner at Kiwanis Park in lieu of the noon meeting that day.
The Taylorville Kiwanis Club is part of global organization of volunteers dedicated to improving the world one child and one community at a time. Weekly meetings are held Tuesdays at noon at the Taylorville Memorial Hospital auditorium. For information on the club, go to taylorvillekiwanis.com.
Due to abuse, the drop-off recycling bin located at Midstate Salvage has been removed. The bins were put in place to give Christian County residents the ability to recycle their items through Midstate, however many ended up using the bins more as a waste bin than as a recycling bin.
Debbie LeVault, educator with the Christian County Solid Waste Management Department spoke with Regional Radio News and shared that people were putting things such as motor oil and carpeting into the bins.
There are still recycling options for Christian County residents. Midstate will still accept many recyclables with the exception of plastics and glass during their normal business hours. Residents can also sign up for Cleeton Sanitation’s curbside recycling program.
Midstate is open Monday through Friday from 8 until 4, and Saturdays from 8 until Noon.
The Christian County TRIAD program along with the AARP are alerting citizens of the potential for fraudulent phone calls regarding the collection of overdue tax debts to the IRS. The IRS is now using four private debt collection agencies to recover unpaid tax depts, and there is concern that scammers may try to emulate phone numbers and caller ID titles of these agencies.
Richard Peters, Director of the Christian County TRIAD program spoke with Regional Radio News and shared what the procedure is when the IRS refers someone’s debt to a collection agency.
TRIAD and the AARP are concerned that scammers may try to imitate the IRS or these collection agencies in an attempt to scam people out of their money.
Peters said people need to be vigilant, and understand that the collection agencies tasked with collecting tax debts will not call you out of the blue, demanding you purchase something such as a greed dot money card to pay the debt.
The Illinois State Fair is expanding its grandstand lineup. State Fair Manager Kevin Gordon says a longtime country legend is joining the mix with the help of some friends.
Popular acappella group Pentatonix has also been added August 12th. Classic rockers Foghat will play a free concert on the opening night of the fiar August 10th. There will be a hush all over the fairgrounds august 14th as former Herman Hermits frontman Peter Noone will perform a free show. On August 18th, Montgomery Gentry will team up with The Charlie Daniels Band, The Marshall Tucker Band and the Outlaws for the Southern Uprising Tour. August 15th is the lone remaning open date. Tickets for all shows will go on sale April 29th through www.ticketmaster.com.
The Trump Administration could finally have a Secretary of Agriculture in place as early as next week, however one commodity group suggests that's just the beginning of work to be done. NAFB Farm Broadcaster, Jared White, has more.
Farmers throughout Illinois continue to receive letters from solar companies offering cash in exchange for use of their land. And the interest continues to grow, especially during a period of low commodity prices.
Garrett Thalgott, an Illinois Farm Bureau attorney, said the number of solar companies looking for land in Illinois has increased in the last year. The number of farmers receiving offer letters has also increased.
IFB has held informational meetings in 12 counties throughout the state to explain solar agreements. He says landowners should consult their own attorney to handle details of a lease agreement.
A landowner may have a less productive area in mind for a solar panel, but Thalgott says solar contracts have some similarities to windmill land use.
Farmers should also contact the Farm Services Agency if the land is included in a government farm program.
A Springfield native swims with the sharks on ABC and walks away with a boost to his company. Springfield High Grad Adam Havey's company was successful in getting an investment from Barbara Corcoran on Shark Tank to help boost his Guard Llama personal security app and device. It allows a user to contact police without having to call 911. Havey and his co-founder partner were hoping to get 100-thousand dollars in exchange for a 5 percent stake in the company, but Corcoran gave Guard Llama a 100-thousand dollar loan in exchange for an 18 percent stake in the company. Havey did not appear on the episode. Corcoran saw potential in the product with her work in real estate, an area where workers often are concerned about personal safety. Havey explains that the mass shooting at Northern Illinois University in 2008 and a brutal kidnapping, rape and murder of a woman near campus two years later during his time at NIU inspired his invention.
Havey says the fledgling company is taking in about 500-thousand dollars a year in revenue and selling about 100 units a week.
The Taylorville City Council met in their regularly scheduled meeting on Monday night at the Taylorville Municipal Building. It was the final meeting for several city officials, including Mayor Greg Brotherton, who has served as Taylorville Mayor since 2009.
Mayor Brotherton spoke with WTIMTV following the meeting and discussed several items discussed during the meeting, including a possible TIF district that will be discussed at an upcoming committee meeting. Brotherton said a TIF district is simply a tax district where taxes go back into the TIF district.
Brotherton expanded on TIF districts, saying they can potentially help to bring new businesses to town, and give the area an edge over other competing municipalities for those businesses.
There was also several ordinances to purchase new equipment for the city. The new equipment had been a hot topic for the council, on whether or not the city should take out an additional loan to purchase the equipment. Brotherton said sometimes however buying new equipment is just the cost of doing business, and could potentially save the city money over paying additional workers.
Mayor Brotherton also addressed the city of Taylorville, thanking them as well as those he’s worked with on the City Council during his time as mayor. Brotherton also urged those thinking about running for office to do so.
This week Crimestoppers is seeking information in regards to criminal damage that occurred in Taylorville.
Sometime between Wednesday, April 12, 2017 and Thursday, April 13, 2017, person or persons unknown used spray paint to damage a sign at the First United Methodist Church, located at 200 South Walnut Street. The unknown subject or subjects painted a phrase and the number “666” on the sign. The total dollar amount of damage is unknown at this time.
Please contact Crimestoppers if you have any information on this crime or any other crimes or wanted persons. Crimestoppers will pay cash rewards of up to $1,000.00 for information that leads to an arrest and you do not have to give your name. Crimestoppers will pay double the normal reward for information that leads to an arrest for the crime of the week.
You can contact Crimestoppers at 824-9100, at our website Christiancountycrimestoppers.org, or by texting CRIMES (274632) and then your tip. As always, you will remain anonymous.
Shelby Electric Cooperative has been running a program that’s designed to teach kids about energy use in their homes. As part of the program the kids also get to meet “CFL Charlie”, the Cooperative’s mascot.
Heidi Hall with Shelby Electric Cooperative coordinates the program, and shared how the program discusses two main topics with the kids. Electricity safety, and ways to conserve energy.
CFL Charlie gives the kids a curriculum kit that the kids take home, and analyze their own home’s energy use. Once that’s done, CFL Charlie gives the kids a certificate they can take home.
To get your school involved with the program, you can contact Heidi Hall at Shelby Electric Cooperative.
Many parents know of the various college savings programs that are set up with the Illinois Treasurer’s office. The Treasurer wants to expand the ability for parents to save for their children’s future to parents of children with disabilities who rely on things such as social security benefits, and have established the ABLE program to allow them to do so.
Illinois Treasurer Michael Frerichs appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show to discuss the ABLE program. Because the program is so new, Frerichs wanted to inform the public of the program, and what it will allow parents of children with disabilities to do for their kids.
One issue many parents encounter when trying to save for their children is what those savings would do for their children’s social security benefits. Frerichs says this program will allow parents to put away money for their children’s future, without jeopardizing the social security benefits they may already receive.
To find out more about the ABLE program offered through the Illinois Treasurer’s office, visit the office online at IllinoisTreasurer.gov.
The world of mixed martial arts has a local flavor as a Central Illinois native continues to rise through the ranks of refereeing the sport. Taylorville native Bobby Wombacher has refereed events in promotions such as the UFC, and continues to officiate in various events across the country.
Wombacher will be officiating an event in St. Louis on April 22nd, and invited people to attend. As for his officiating background, Wombacher has officiated fights in many notable promotions across the country.
Wombacher said for those looking to break into the sport, the first step is to find a reputable gym which can be a tough task in Illinois.
Wombacher originally tried to break into the sport as a fighter, and traveled to Salt Lake City to join a gym owned by former UFC fighter Jeremy Horn. A notable name in the world of MMA and a Hillsboro native helped spark the decision for Wombacher to make the journey out west to give his MMA dreams a shot.
To keep up to date with upcoming events that Wombacher is taking part in, you can follow his public Facebook page, “MMA Referee Bobby Wombacher”.
Shelby County often sees increased tourism during the summer months due to the many attractions in the area that benefit from the warmer weather. The Shelby County Office of Tourism has information on these different attractions, that can assist any visitor on what to do while in the county.
Freddie Fry with the Shelby County Office of Tourism says this time of year more is going on, and her office can assist visitors to the region. However, they’re not always open, but there are still ways to get information.
Those wanting to know what events are coming up in Shelby County can also visit the office’s website to see their calendar of events.
Fry appeared on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show live from our downtown Shelbyville studios.
Agriculture is a major industry in Illinois, and Ag in the Classroom is working to teach agriculture to students in the state on the importance of the Ag industry in our everyday lives. The Ag Literacy program is working in coordination with Ag in the Classroom to teach students who may not know how they interact with agriculture, the role it plays in society.
Kathleen Agney, Ag Literacy Coordinator for Shelby County, and better known as the Ag in the Classroom Teacher said although agriculture is big business in Shelby County, many students don’t know the reach it has, which is what the Ag Literacy program is looking to teach.
Agney travels to many different schools in the area teaching students about the ways agriculture impacts their lives that they may not know or even think of.
Agney appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show Live from our Downtown Shelbyville Studios.
The weather is getting warmer and many are looking forward to getting out to the various lakes in the area to fish. Many are heading to Lake Shelbyville to do their fishing, however have met mixed results.
Mike Mounts, District Fisheries Biologist with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources said although the number of fish may be down at the lake, the quality of fishing should be there.
Mounts expects the fishing for several different types of fish to either be good, or at least as good as last year. Fisherman have struggled to catch fish early on this year so far however, and the IDNR is unsure why.
Mounts appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show live from our Downtown Shelbyville Studios.
Behind Locked Doors in Taylorville opened for business on Thursday evening with a ribbon cutting ceremony with the Greater Taylorville Chamber of Commerce. Behind Locked Doors is an “escape room” attraction that challenges participants to figure out a series of puzzles in order to be able to “escape” a room.
Tyler Frump is the owner of the business and was excited about it’s opening. She said unfortunately the Taylorville location ended up being the second location of hers to open, however it provides much more freedom for her business.
The attraction can provide fun for the entire family, or serve as a great team building exercise for an office.
Behind Locked Doors costs $20 per person, and is open Friday from 5 until midnight; Saturday from noon to midnight; and Sunday from 1 until 9. They also take by appointment reservations.
The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum no longer features a prominent display of the man who ended Lincoln's life. Last week museum officials removed a statue of assassin John Wilkes Booth. Museum officials say they want to focus on the achievements of Lincoln's life, not the assassination that ended it.
Two Republican State Senators, Kyle McCarter of Lebanon and Dan McConchie of Hawthorn Woods, are teaming up for an alternative to talk of the stalled grand bargain in the Senate. The pair are promoting the multi-point "Taxpayer Bargain" plan for a balanced state budget. McCarter says they stand alone when it comes to offering a budget without a tax hike.
McCarter was referring to Bloomington State Senator Bill Brady's cut oriented budget plan. McCarter may remind you of Han Solo in Star Wars, who was known to say "don't tell me the odds".
The budget plan maintains 100% of General State Aid for elemenetary and secondary education. Medicaid spending for the most vulnerable would also be shielded. State agencies and departments would make 10% across the board cuts. Medicaid and pension reform are other highlights. More details can be found on www.taxpayerbargain.com. McCarter says a similar effort is ready
IDOT's Getting Around Illinois road conditions website has received a major upgrade. The new Getting Around Illinois site is versatile to function with smartphones, tablets and the traditional desktops and laptops. IDOT's Kelsea Gurski says information on road closures, construction and winter driving conditions will come much faster.
Gurski notes the information available to motorists has greatly expanded...
The new Getting Around Illinois site also features a number of cameras and weather stations across the state.
The Central Illinois Food Bank are highlighting a hunger problem that often gets overlooked. With summer vacation for area students quickly approaching, many deal with hunger during the summer months, due to no longer having access to free or reduced price lunches and breakfasts in school.
Krista Lisser, Public Relations Manager with the Central Illinois Food Bank appeared on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show to discuss this issue. The hunger problem even causes many children to be saddened by the onset of summer break.
Many are also starting gardens this time of year, and Lisser said a good way to help your local food bank is to designate a section of your garden, strictly towards growing food to donate.
Lisser said by designating a row or section of your garden strictly for foods to donate to the food bank, you know you will have extra food items available to donate.
Taylorville is now officially the “Chili Capital of Illinois” after a resolution was passed in the Illinois House, which means that the town will have bragging rights for the next year over other towns in the state such as Springfield. Taylorville's claim to the title stems from the various sanctioned chili cook offs hosted in the city limits.
Greater Taylorville Chamber of Commerce CEO Patty Hornbuckle was in Springfield as part of a group that went in to show their support for the House Resolution, and is proud to get the title.
There was some fun banter on the resolution before the resolution was overwhelmingly approved.
Hornbuckle appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.
The Shelbyville Chamber of Commerce’s Business After Hours Event most recently took place at J&R Collision in Shelbyville. With recent hail storms that have struck the Shelbyville area, J&R Collision has been hard at work helping people fix the damage that was done to their vehicles.
Daniel Norton, General Manager at J&R Collision Centers in Shelbyville wanted to thank the community that have come out in full support of the business, especially in recent weeks.
Sometimes damage to a vehicle can be difficult to spot. Norton urged people to bring their vehicles in so they can make sure if damage has been done, and will fix any problems that may arise.
With the weather getting warmer many are getting out and beginning to work on their gardens again. There are some tips to think about with your garden as you do your planting this season, such as keeping an eye on soil temperatures.
Andrew Holsinger, Horticulture Educator at the University of Illinois Extension Office said although many plant traditional gardens, another option you may want to consider is planting a raised bed garden.
One of the benefits a raised bed garden can have is warmer soil temperatures. Warmer temperatures can benefit many different types of plants, and the types of soil you can use in them can have other benefits such as reducing weeds.
Holsinger appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.
This month’s Newstalk WTIM Central Illinois Smiles Family Dentistry “Big Smile for the Community Honoree is Mary-Kate Curtin, who is involved with 4-H, and is a member of the livestock judging team. Curtin said the thing that stands out to her the most about 4-H is the relationships that are built.
Curtin said she’s planning on being involved with 4-H in the future, even though it won’t be as a 4-H Officer.
To nominate someone for the Newstalk WTIM Central Illinois Smiles Family Dentistry “Big Smile for the Community” award, send your nominations to firstname.lastname@example.org
Congressman Rodney Davis is unfazed by poll numbers that show growing support for keeping Obamacare. In a recent appearance on CNN, the Taylorville Republican said the GOP must proceed with addressing a key issue on the healthcare front.
President Trump plans to tackle the health care issue sooner rather than later, saying he wants to resolve the debate before moving on to tax reform.
State Senator Jason Barickman is offering his concept for school funding reform. The pending bill calls for the state to look at each district and their resources separately without a blanket funding formula. Barickman hopes to get legislation moving sooner rather than later.
Barickman calls his K through 12 funding plan an evidence based model, with 27 separate points figuring into each school district's funding formula.
The Governor has been touring the state, spending campaign fund cash to do so, but he says he’s not campaigning.
Bruce Rauner finished his first day of stops around the state in Springfield on Tuesday and said the tour is to get his message directly out to citizens and voters. And that message is, the failure to get a budget done in Illinois is not his fault.
Rauner has yet to formally announce a reelection bid in the Governor’s race but has already donated $50 million of his own money to his campaign fund. And he was using that fund to pay for tour stops.
The effort to legalize marijuana is getting a more official push next week. Supportive lawmakers are going to hold committee hearings next week on how laws are working in other states. But State Rep. Kelly Cassidy says they aren’t in a big rush make Illinois the next state with legal recreational marijuana.
Lawmakers say selling and then taxing pot could bring in more than $350 million in taxes each year for the state. The proposed law would make it legal to posses no more than 28 grams of the drug.
The Pana Fire Department has dealt with a series of fires in the town over the past few months, with the most recent of which being two fires within days of each other that resulted in the deaths of three Pana residents. The department is stressing that the two fatal fires were accidental in nature, and are not connected to a string of arson attacks that have occurred throughout the city.
Pana Fire Chief Rod Bland spoke with Regional Radio News to speak on the fires. He wants to inform the public the rumors that have been going around are not true, and these past two fires are not connected to the arson attacks plaguing the town.
Fires that result in death can be a tough thing for a department to deal with, let alone two of them in several days. Bland says his team is helping each other with the tough situation the department and it’s firefighters are dealing with.
There’s a new boxing gym in Taylorville that is designed to help those diagnosed with Parkinson’s cope with the disease. Rock Steady Boxing utilizes high intensity exercise to help control, and even regress symptoms of Parkinson’s.
Lisa Tarr, owner of Rock Steady Boxing in Taylorville appeared on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show to discuss her business, and how it’s helping those in the community battling the disease. She shared how a 60 minute clip inspired her to open the gym.
The gym utilizes several different exercises and areas of focus to help it’s members manage the disease and live a better life.
While Rock Steady Boxing’s main focus is battling the onset of Parkinson’s, they welcome all to their gym, and offer classes for all ages, taught by certified instructors to improve overall health. You can find Rock Steady Boxing at 213 West Main Cross in Taylorville, online at RockSteadyBoxing.org, or by giving them a call at 820-1799.
Many involved with the Taylorville School district and around Taylorville have been breathing a sigh of relief after the passing of the School Tax Referendum in last week’s local election. The referendum will allow the district to keep staff and school extracurricular programs that were set to be cut if the measure had failed.
Taylorville Superintendent Dr. Gregg Fuerstenau wanted to thank everyone who made the results of the referendum possible.
The district was able to reinstate all programs and staff that had been scheduled to be cut due to the results. The district will have to do some bridging with their budget however, as the money from the referendum won’t come in for several years.
Taylorville Superintendent Dr. Gregg Fuerstenau appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.
March was National Nutritional Month, and many set health goals to live better and be healthier in their lives. Sometimes however those looking to make a change will set goals that are too big or complicated, which can make success in those goals difficult.
Joyce Fikri with the St. Louis Dairy Council joined the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show and had suggestions for smaller changes people can make to eat better.
There are several ways to reduce the calories we eat on a daily basis. These can include limiting fat and sodium intake.
Fikri also suggested adding dairy products to many recipes instead of other, less healthy ingredients.
Christian County is now under the watchful eye of the newly formed Christian County Search and Rescue Team. The team is made up of dedicated firefighters and damage assessment team members is designed to give Christian County the ability to get a jump start on search and rescue operations before calling in additional help.
Christian County Emergency Manager Mike Crews spoke with Regional Radio News about the team and is happy the county was able to put the team together. A missing persons search several months ago in Taylorville identified the need for this kind of team.
Team members received training to help them better understand what may be going through the mind of a lost person, which can in turn, help the team locate that person faster.
The final portion of the team’s training was to locate a fictitious missing person at Lake Taylorville. The team was able to locate the “victim” within 90 minutes, after a search that the instructors had anticipated would last several hours.
WMKR and Peoples Bank and Trust Pana presented awards at the Pana High School to the March students of the Month.
From Left to right are: Sarah VanHuss - Peoples Bank and Trust - Pana, Senior Claudia Magnussen, Junior Danielle Epley, Sophomore Shania Schoonover, Freshman Danielle Bieber and far right Nick Epley from Peoples Bank and Trust Pana.
Christian County Coroner Amy Calvert Winans has informed Regional Radio News of a death investigation conducted following a death in Bulpitt on Monday afternoon.
On Monday at 4:36P.M. 911 received a call from a male subject that his wife was not breathing and unresponsive in the 300 Block of Garrison St, Bulpit. Kincaid police responded to the scene and then ask that the coroner be notified. 75- year- old Nancy Snider of Bulpitt was pronounced dead in her home. The scene was secured by Kincaid Police Department who took the lead on the investigation. Illinois State Police Crime Scene Services responded and processed the scene.
An autopsy was conducted on Tuesday in Bloomington. Autopsy results indicate she died from self-inflicted contact range gunshot wound of the head. The Kincaid Police Department, Christian County Coroner’s Office and Illinois State Police Crime Scene Services are in charge of the investigation.
The Christian County Emergency Management Agency will be hosting a countywide tabletop disaster drill at the Taylorville Memorial Hospital auditorium on Wednesday. The exercise is intended to better prepare all relevant parties in the county for handling the effects of severe weather.
Christian County Emergency Manager Mike Crews spoke with Regional Radio News and said many different agencies in the county will be there, as well as what the groups will be going over.
These kinds of exercises allow all of the various agencies to interact with one another so they know what to expect once severe weather strikes.
Participants will work their way through a simulated disaster within Christian County, and will have representatives from the Illinois Emergency Management Agency and Morgan County Emergency Management to assist with the exercise.
The Illinois State Historical Society's Symposium is right around the corner, and there is still time to register to attend. The event will be held at LLCC's Springfield Campus, and will take a look at various topics on World War One, and on Women's Suffrage.
Gwen Podeschi with the ISHS said the Symposium is focusing on World War One and Women's Suffrage, due to it being the centennial of both the US entering the war, and when Women's Suffrage was passed.
The Symposium will also be taking a look at several sub topics for each subject.
There will also be a play at the Symposium that visitors can attend. Podeschi appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.
State Representative Avery Bourne is hard at work trying to bring a full state budget to Illinois, but is also working on several other items to help improve live for those in her district as well as the state of Illinois. One of the recent bills she's pushed deals with electronic hunting licenses, while another looks to study various ways to burn Illinois coal in Illinois in a cheaper and more environmentally friendly manor.
Bourne shared how one bill would allow hunters in Illinois to simply bring an electronic copy of their hunting licenses with them when they go out, allowing a convenient way to show officials that they're hunting legally.
Another bill would form a group that would take a closer look at how Illinois could burn it's abundant coal resources in a manor that would be both cost effective, and more environmentally friendly.
State Representative Avery Bourne appeared on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.
Blaise Bernardi (center), Outreach Coordinator for the Illinois State Treasurer's Office, was Tuesday's guest speaker at the weekly meeting of the Taylorville Kiwanis Club. President Will Perkins (left) presided at the meeting; Kiwanis program chair for April Patty Hornbuckle is at the right.
The Taylorville Kiwanis Club heard about the many programs offered by the Illinois State Treasurer's Office, at their weekly luncheon on Tuesday at the Taylorville Memorial Hospital auditorium.
Blaise Bernardi, an outreach coordinator with the State Treasurer's Office, spoke about 5 programs among the many that office provides.
The “I-Cash” program administered by the State Treasurer's Office, helps them connect unclaimed property with their rightful owners. Bernadi said that in Christian County alone, there's some 2-point-3 million dollars of unclaimed property, including one item worth some 41-thousand dollars.
Bernardi said the “Bright Start College Savings Plan” administered by the State Treasurer's Office, allows people to save for college tax-free. That program has over 400-thousand active accounts.
He went on to talk about the “Able-Act” account, which allows disabled people to open tax free accounts to protect Social Security and Medicare benefits. Bernardi said people can save up to 100-thousand dollars thru this program without losing Social Security benefits.
The 4th program Bernardi talked about that's offered thru the State Treasurer's Office, is the Ag Invest program, which provides opportunities for qualified farmers to begin or expand farming operations, at low interest rates.
And the last program Bernardi spoke about at the Kiwanis meeting, was the “Illinois Funds and E-Pay” program offered to cities and towns across Illinois, enabling communities to get better returns on invested money.
Kiwanis members are reminded of the annual Kiwanis Park Clean-Up Day this Saturday morning at 9, the Interclub meeting with the Taylorville High School Kiwanis Key Club April 26th, and the May 16th dinner at Kiwanis Park in lieu of the noon meeting that day.
The Taylorville Kiwanis Club is part of global organization of volunteers dedicated to improving the world one child and one community at a time. Weekly meetings are held Tuesdays at noon at the Taylorville Memorial Hospital auditorium. For information on the club, go to taylorvillekiwanis.com.
Taylorville Memorial Hospital is offering a class for those who would like to get a better handle on managing their diabetes. The classes meet once a week for four weeks, and will focus on a variety of subjects on how to better manage diabetes.
Janelle Cornell, Clinical Dietitian with Taylorville Memorial Hospital spoke with Regional Radio News and had more information on the classes. The team at Taylorville Memorial worked hard to bring the classes to Taylorville, and have another round of classes coming up soon.
Those who take the class learn about all sorts of subjects pertaining to diabetes care, including diet, insulin management, and everything in between.
Those interested in taking the class can contact Cornell at Taylorville Memorial Hospital, at 824-1840 for more information.
Although the 2017 planting season has gotten off to a slow start in Illinois, it won't be long before farmers will be hitting it hard and heavy. That of course means big machinery on rural roadways. NAFB Farm Broadcaster Jared White has more on what you should be on the lookout for this spring.
Two years ago Governor Bruce Rauner told the Chicago Tribune Editorial Board that quote "Crisis. Crisis creates leverage.” But now he’s denying that he’s using inadequate funding for state universities and social service agencies as a leverage point for his turn around agenda items.
Rauner continues to say the state needs term limits, fair maps, property tax freezes and other structural reforms to fix the state for the long haul.
You can help in the fight against child abuse. The Illinois Department of Children and Family Services says if you see something, say something. Veronica Reza says that you should report any concerns about child abuse to the child abuse hotline. From there in about 24 hours a social worker will reach out for help. And often the first step isn’t to take a child out of a home.
Some farmers and other landowners welcome a full US Supreme Court now that Neil Gorsuch has been sworn in to take the late Antonin Scalia's seat. Ellen Steen serves as general counsel and secretary of the American Farm Bureau Federation;
The U-S Senate confirmed Gorsuch after a bruising confirmation battle late last week. The American Farm Bureau's Steen expects the high court to continue to hear cases on land use, the power of federal government agencies and property rights.
The Taylorville School Board held their regularly scheduled monthly meeting on Monday night at the Taylorville School Administration building. It was a good night for the board as it was the board’s first meeting since the passing of the Taylorville Schools Tax Referendum, which allowed the board to reinstate all staff and programs that were slated to be cut should the referendum have failed.
Taylorville Schools Superintendent Dr. Gregg Fuerstenau did warn the packed house in attendance that the district wasn’t out of the woods yet, and there was still fighting left to do. Dr. Fuerstenau spoke with WTIMTV following the meeting and explained that even with the increased local revenue, the school still relies on the state for much of it’s funding.
The lawsuit gives the school district one more pressure point towards the state in an attempt to get the funding owed to the school.
The State has also told the district that they will receive a preschool grant for the coming school years. This made it much easier for the school district to reinstate the staff members who were slated to be cut should the local tax referendum have failed.
The board also reinstated the programs that were scheduled to be cut if the tax referendum had failed.
In closing, the Taylorville School Board honored several retiring board members, Rick Bryan, Seth McMillan, and longtime Taylorville educator Katie Fraley. Each member was presented with a plaque thanking them for their service to the district.