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Early Sunday Morning Fire at Locals Bar in Pawnee

A fire occurred at Local's Bar and Restaurant in Pawnee early Sunday morning. The bar went up in flames early in the morning before bar co-owner, Jarrad Smith got a call around 5am. 
 
Multiple fire agencies that included Pawnee, Mt. Auburn, Rochester, and Divernon responded to the scene of the blaze.
 
More details will be released as they become available to Regional Radio News. 

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Heavy Spring Rains Causes Problems for Lake Shelbyville Tourists This Holiday Weekend

 

This spring's heavy rains have affected a popular tourist attaction this Memorial Day weekend.

Lake Shelbyville has seen its lake level rise considerably as a result of spring rains, and as a result, the 9th Street Beach just north of the Shelbyville Dam, is completely under water.

 

 

 

Additionally, high water boat ramps are open rather than the normal boat ramps that boaters take to get on and off the lake.  The high water boat ramps were installed a few years ago, after heavy spring rains completely closed all the normal ramps that are used.  This had a major effect on tourism at the Lake, which caused lake officials to construct the high water ramps.

More rain is expected in Central Illinois thru the Memorial Day holiday weekend, which will only add to Lake Shelbyville's pool level.

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Representative Avery Bourne Challenges Students to Read Throughout the Summer

School is ending for area students, and summer break is kicking into full swing. One area lawmaker wants children to read throughout the summer while still enjoying their break. This is the third year that 95th District Representative Avery Bourne has challenged her district’s elementary school students to dive into a good book over summer break, and she will be hosting ice cream parties at the end of the summer for those that participate in the challenge.

 

Bourne says reading has a huge impact on a child’s future.

 

 

Bourne says she’s excited to continue helping educate her district’s youth throughout the hot summer months.

 

 

Bourne says reading logs have gone out to area schools to be passed out to students. If your child did not receive a log, you can visit Bourne’s office in Litchfield to receive a copy or there is a downloadable form on her website. You can visit her website by clicking here.

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Perdue Not In Agreement with Trump on USDA Budget

USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue does not agree with the White House on some key spending cuts in the president’s so far, unpopular USDA budget request. Those differences quickly became apparent at a House Appropriations hearing. Perdue faced a barrage of budget criticism from Democrats and Republicans on everything from cutting food stamps to eliminating international hunger programs and paring crop insurance. But that was expected at his first hearing before House Ag appropriators.

 

What wasn’t, were some of the Secretary’s responses, even as he insisted, he was representing the administration’s budget request. Connecticut’s Rosa DeLauro asked Perdue if he stood by his earlier statement defending SNAP, even as the White House proposed cutting food stamps almost 200-billion over 10-years by shifting costs to the states and tightening eligibility requirements…

 

 

Perdue insists FY ’18 SNAP is “fully funded,” while the White House proposes legislation to shift some costs to the states in later years. On ending the taxpayer-funded Food for Peace Program that buys U.S.-produced food to donate overseas, and make cash donations instead, an idea Chairman Robert Aderholt complained, makes no sense and went nowhere when the Obama White House proposed it…

 

 

On urging the White House to get behind efforts to end the Cuba trade embargo…

 

 

Perdue did stand by the White House on cuts to rural housing, infrastructure, agency staffing and a ten-year, 29-billion dollar cut in producer crop insurance subsidies…

 

 

But even in disagreeing, Perdue was agreeable, reflecting his long political experience as a governor and state lawmaker in softening disputes, diffusing controversy, and perhaps helping a controversial president advance a very tough proposition. That proposition would be shrinking the federal government.

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Luke Bryan to Perform in Christian County

A country music superstar will be performing later this year in Christian County. Luke Bryan will perform in Edinburg on October 6th at 6 p.m. as part of his Farm Tour 2017. The show will be at Ayers Family Farm at 2535 North 800 East Road, and is one of six stops on his farm tour in the early fall.

 

Tickets for the concert will be 49 dollars in advance and 60 dollars at the gate. There will also be a five dollar charge for parking in advance, or 10 dollars the day of. Once the concert is sold out, no tickets will be sold at the door. Tickets go on sale on Tuesday, May 30th.

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*UPDATE* Enhanced Risk of Severe Weather Saturday Evening

 

 

As most are planning for a fun-filled holiday weekend, be alert that Mother Nature may have other plans. Most of the Regional Radio listening area is under an enhanced risk for severe weather on Saturday with some of the southern edge of the area under a moderate risk for severe storms.

 

Christian County Emergency Management Agency Director Mike Crews wants residents to keep an eye to the sky over the weekend. He says the sirens don’t necessarily mean a tornado is coming, but that you need to take some action for the incoming weather.

 

 

Crews says the best thing people can do is stay updated on the latest weather forecast.

 

 

Severe storms are likely on Saturday evening between 6 pm and midnight along and south of I-74. The primary hazards will be damaging wind gusts of 60-80 mph along with large hail 1-3 inches in diameter. Tornadoes are also possible. Areas along and south of Jacksonville to Springfield, as well as to the Charleston/Mattoon areas have an enhanced risk of severe storms.

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CNB Bank and Trust Partners With Cardinals For Local Charities

CNB Bank and Trust is once again partnering with the St. Louis Cardinals to get you to the ballgame while benefitting area charities. This is the fourth year the bank has partnered with the Cardinals, and local proceeds will go towards the Shadow Home in Taylorville.

 

CNB Marketing Director Shelley Singleton says the tickets are only $25 each for the game over the Fourth of July weekend against the Washington Nationals. She says the bank is excited to once again pass along this great deal to Cardinal fans and also talks about the rings being given to those in attendance that night.

 

 

Singleton says there are many reasons to buy tickets to the game.

 

 

For more information or to purchase tickets, you can visit cnbil.com or visit the Taylorville branch of CNB Bank and Trust.

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"Thrill of a Lifetime" for Area Veterans on Land of Lincoln Honor Flight

Five area veterans got the opportunity to take the Land of Lincoln Honor Flight to Washington D.C. on Tuesday. Alan Collebrusco of Taylorville, and Ron Chaney, Ed Henne, and Ken Rigan all of Shelbyville, and Ron Clutter of Assumption all took part in the day-long trip. Participants got to visit the war memorials in D.C., the Lincoln Memorial, Arlington National Cemetery and more in their visit to the nation’s capital.

 

Shelbyville veteran Ed Henne called the trip a thrill of a lifetime.

 

 

Kenneth Rigan, also of Shelbyville the trip from beginning to end was excellently planned and executed.

 

 

81 Illinois veterans participated in the Honor Flight on Tuesday, coming from all across the state. The next scheduled Honor Flight is set for June 20th. For more information or to sign up, you can visit the organization’s website by clicking here.

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AFBF Looking Forward to NAFTA Renegotiation

The American Farm Bureau Federation is looking forward to the renegotiation of NAFTA. NAFB's Micheal Clements has more…

 

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Mosquito Season is Here

Headed outside this weekend? With all the wet weather in places the Illinois Department of Public Health wants you to prevent mosquito bites. Melaney Arnold says that recent rains have produced some ideal conditions to breed the irritating insect. To avoid the annoying bites and possible illnesses that go along with them take steps to keep bite free. 



A few other tips, wear long sleeves and pants and spend less time out around dawn and dusk. 

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As Summer Season Approaches, State and Local Police Remind You to Buckle Up

IDOT, state and local police say they are not messing around this summer when it comes to getting people to buckle up.

 

The 14 weeks between Memorial Day and Labor Day are typically the deadliest on Illinois roads says I-DOT's Jessi Hopkins. She explains who they've found to be least likely to wear a seat belt.

 

 

Hopkins says they've also found younger males driving pickup trucks are less likely to buckle up. Police will be holding special seat belt enforcement zones, road side safety checks, and other details to help keep people safe on the roads this summer.

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U of I Extension Offering Classes To Teach Children and Adults About Growing and Using Locally Grown Foods

The University of Illinois Extension Office has been promoting their local food initiative, in an effort to get more people eating and consuming locally grown food. As a part of the initiative, the Extension is offering classes to kids and adults alike to teach them how they can utilize locally grown foods.
 
Lisa Peterson, Nutrition and Wellness Educator with the U of I Extension Office appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show and had more details on some of these classes. The first class the extension is offering aims to teach children about growing and using fresh herbs.
 
 
Another class the extension is offering is aimed more towards adults, and will teach how to grow and preserve fresh strawberries and cucumbers.
 
 
The Extension Office is now able to offer these classes to the public free of charge, due to a grant received through the Lumpkin Family Foundation.

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Taylorville Chamber Community Blood Drive Huge Success Despite The Wet Weather

 
Giving blood can provide vital life saving blood to those in area hospitals who need it. Because of this need, many areas host community blood drives, including the Greater Taylorville Chamber of Commerce, who just recently hosted a community blood drive in the Taylorville Square.
 
Patty Hornbuckle, CEO of the Greater Taylorville Chamber of Commerce appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM morning show to discuss the drive. Despite the rain, the turnout for the blood drive was good. 
 
 
The drive was able to have a record seven first time donors. Hornbuckle also previewed a future blood drive taking place later on this summer.
 
 
Hornbuckle thanked those who attended the blood drive, and said the Chamber will have more information on the upcoming blood drive as it becomes available.

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PHOTO: Former Remmert's Garage Location Torn Down

 

The former Remmert Auto and Tire location in Stonington is being torn down for a new Casey's General Store. The garage has moved two blocks south on Illinois Route 48.

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UPDATE: Brian Ferguson Found Guilty of Arson / Home Invasion

UPDATE: 55-year-old Brian Ferguson, who was accused of invading a former girlfriend’s home and setting it on fire, has been found guilty of home invasion and residential arson. He will now face sentencing on July 6th.

 

The trial for Brian Ferguson, who is accused of invading a former girlfriend’s home and setting it on fire, has officially been sent to the jury.

 

The victim, Jacqueline Anderson, gave her side of the story to the jury Wednesday. She told the court that she had initially ended the relationship in July, but that didn’t stop the defendant. She was scared for her own life, even appeasing the defendant by still seeing him at points between July and the night of the fire. But that couldn’t stop what happened on November 20th.

 

Ferguson also testified on his own behalf. He did not disagree that Anderson had said she wanted space and would call the cops if he kept coming around. He also said that he still regularly saw her, and even maintained a physical relationship up until the moments leading up to the fire.

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Area Man Credits Wife, HSHS Good Shepherd Hospital For Saving His Life During Stroke

 

With May being National Stroke Awareness Month, one area man thanks those at HSHS Good Shepherd Hospital every day for being alive.

 

It was an average summer morning on July 8, 2013 for the Fulk family. Kathy Fulk had just gotten home from her morning run, and her husband Orville had come downstairs to greet her. As they had their morning exchange, Orville started losing feeling in his right arm, and he lost the ability to communicate. He was having a stroke, and luckily, his wife immediately recognized the signs.

 

He was rushed to what was then Shelby Memorial Hospital. After getting his vitals, he received an injection into his brain to break the clot. Fulk describes the next part of his stroke story:

 

 

Orville has no issues to this day other than some weakness in his right arm. He says he knows he could have lost his life that day, but his wife’s quick thinking and the care from HSHS Good Shepherd Hospital didn’t let that happen.

 

 

According to the Center for Disease Control, someone in the United States has a stroke every 40 seconds. But Orville Fulk is as strong as ever.

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Former Congressional Candidate / Rodney Davis Opponent Arrested

A number of Democrats have expressed interest in running against Congressman Rodney Davis next year in the 13th Congressional District. The man who represented Dems last year might be hard pressed to get a rematch with Davis. Former Macon County Board member Mark Wicklund is charged with DUI and hitting a police officer at Decatur Memorial Hospital, where he was being treated after a rollover crash last month. Wicklund is free on $10,000 bond.

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Heavy Spring Rains Leading to Nitrogen Loss for Farmers

Heavy rains in the southern half of the state have farmers dealing with nitrogen loss. Tim Laatsch works for Growmark.



And Laatsch says the soil sample will determine a farmer’s best course of action.



Laatsch farms near Altamont in Effingham County. He says his area of the state has seen rain in “the teens” this spring. 

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Farmer Who Serves in Statehouse Supports Industrial Hemp Bill

A Henry County farmer who also serves in the Illinois General Assembly supports industrial hemp as an alternative crop. State Representative Dan Swanson farms near Alpha.



He says a neighboring state already allows farmers to grow industrial hemp.



A bill awaits a House committee vote following unanimous Senate approval. The measure would allow a farmer to get licensed with the Department of Agriculture to plant and harvest industrial hemp. Swanson says the plant has a short growing season, grows to 15 feet tall, needs little maintenance and starves out other weeds. He says industrial hemp would also give farmers an additional revenue stream to help offset current weak corn and soybean prices.

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Right to Know Act Awaits Action in House

The Illinois Senate recently passed the Right to Know Act, which is designed to protect the online privacy of Illinoisans while promoting online transparency. Senator Michael Hastings says the most personal of information is at stake, and it's a highly prized asset...



Online companies would have to reveal what they're sharing under the act. Proponents say online personal info has been used to determine insurance rates and verify loans. The bill is being considered in committee in the Illinois House.

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Humor Can Play an Important Part In Overall Health

April was National Humor Month, and one psychologist wants people to consider the role humor plays in their lives, in an effort to reduce stress in their day to day routines. Steve Wilson is founder of the World Laughter Tour and Director of National Humor Month, and says humor plays an important part in health.
 
Wilson gave a background of himself, and the work that he does.
 
 
Wilson discussed some of the health benefits of humor, saying it can help reduce stress, and increase your overall health and well being.
 
 
Wilson appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.

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Social Security Administration Working to Help Veterans With Their Social Security Needs

Memorial Day is just around the corner and the Social Security Administration is doing what they can to help honor veterans, and assist them with their social security needs. The SSA will at times, expedite the process for veterans applying for social security benefits, to help them get the financial help that they need.
 
Jessica Goodman with the Social Security Administration appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show, and says that the SSA wants veterans to know what services social security can provide to them.
 
 
Under the right circumstances, the Social Security Administration will expedite the application process for veterans, so they can receive social security benefits faster.
 
 
Goodman says a usual claim with the Social Security Administration typically takes around six months to process, where as a veteran with a disability will usually take around two months.

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Tornado Wrestling Foundation Hoping Mouse Racing Fundraiser Event Can Help Keep Kid's Focus on Wrestling and School

 
On June 3rd the Tornado Wrestling Foundation will be hosting their 2017 Mouse Races Fundraiser event at the Christian County Fairgrounds. The event is designed to help raise funds for the wrestling programs in Taylorville, from the youth level, all the way to the high school program.
 
Gerry Mahr and Tornado Wrestling Head Coach Lee Mateer, both with the Tornado Wrestling Foundation appeared as guests on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show to discuss the fundraiser. Mateer says the idea behind the Mouse Races Fundraiser was to create a fun fund raising event for the community, saying the event has already outgrown it's previous venue.
 
 
The Tornado Wrestling Foundation plays a large part in funding the wrestling programs at Taylorville Schools. Mahr says the Tornado Wrestling Foundation hasn't set a particular fund raising goal for the event, but would like to raise enough money to let the kids focus on their wrestling and academics.
 
 
Tickets can be purchased in advance for $15, or at the door for $20. Businesses can also sponsor a mouse as well. For more information on tickets or sponsoring a mouse, Mahr says to give him a call at 306-5140. 

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Reception To Be Held for Retiring Miller Media Group Employee May 30

A reception for one of the Miller Media Group long-time account managers is set for Tuesday, May 30th at the Park Street studios in Taylorville.

Judi Humphrey has been an account manager handling advertising accounts in Taylorville, Shelbyville, Pana, Effingham, and St. Elmo, among other communities, since joining the company in 2001.

Humphrey has been instrumental in the company's advertising revenue growth, as well as her involvement in the communities she serves.

She's a member of the Shelbyville Rotary Club as well as being involved over the years in many fund-raising efforts in her communities.

Humphrey is officially retiring June First, and to honor her, the Miller Media Group is holding a public reception to wish Judi well in her retirement.  It'll take place Tuesday, May 30th, from 11am to 1pm at the company's studios at 918 East Park Street in Taylorville.  A light lunch will be served.

Staff members, advertisers and friends of Judi, are invited to congratulate her on 16 years of service, and wish her the best in her retirement.

Humphrey has agreed to stay on past her June First official retirement date, until her successors are named.

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Nokomis Water Shut-Off

The boil order that was in place for the City of Nokomis has been lifted.

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Floral Arrangements and Antique Items Businesses Presented During Christian County CEO Trade Show

Eight students participated in the Christian County CEO program this year, and the businesses they created were presented to the public last Thursday at Lincoln Land Community College's Taylorville campus. This is the third in a series of three stories featuring the businesses of the students.
 
Samantha Hafliger's business involves creating floral arrangements for decorating grave stones. Hafliger says a family history in the business lead to her deciding to pursue her own business in the industry.
 
 
An interests in garage sales and other unique items lead Matthew O'Brian to start “Brian's Salvage.”  Brian's salvage is a mish-mash of different items that O'Brian has collected that he feel has value.
 
 
The Christian County CEO Trade Show was broadcast live on Groovy 97.3 WRAN.

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Downstate Lawmaker Speaks Out Against Raising State Income Tax

A downstate lawmaker speaking out against legislation that raises the state income tax. The State Senate approved Senate Bill 9 on Tuesday by a 32 to 26 vote. State Senator Chuck Weaver of Peoria opposed. 



Senate Bill 9 increases the individual income tax rate to 4.95 percent from 3.75 percent and the corporate income tax rate will increase to 7-percent from 5.25 percent. The legislation also imposes a 6.25-percent tax on tattooing and body piercing and new taxes of 6-percent on satellite and streaming services. 

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Senate Dems Pass Budget, Rauner Veto Pen at the Ready

Senate President John Cullerton appears to have given up for his quest for a Grand Bargain budget deal with Republicans. Democrats went their own way, approving a $37.3 billion spending plan that features a $5.4 billion tax increase. The additional revenue would come from boosting the personal income tax to 4.95 percent and the corporate rate to 7 percent. Sales tax would be added to a number of services. Governor Rauner says he'll fight the budget plan because it lacks a long term property tax freeze.



No Republicans voted for the budget bills Tuesday. 

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Illinois' Crop Protection Industry Has Voice in Washington

Illinois’ crop protection industry has a voice in Washington. It’s through the group CropLife America where Missouri native Kelly Bray serves as senior director of governmental affairs.



Bray says the organization has just launched a new campaign—called “Give a Crop”.



You can learn more about the campaign at “giveacrop.org” Bray says the site also features a popular section called myth vs. fact--comparing conventionally grown food to organically grown food. 

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Cold Air Funnel Spotted Near Stonington Tuesday Afternoon; No Damage Reported

Weather spotters in northern Christian County got a workout Tuesday afternoon, as a cold air funnel was sighted near Stonington.  The funnel triggered the Stonington tornado siren to go off around 5 o'clock, and the Stonington-Owaneco road was blocked for a time.

Christian County Emergency Management Agency director Mike Crews told Regional Radio News during a live interview on the Miller Media Group stations Tuesday afternoon during the 5 o'clock hour, that while the funnel did look ominous, it was not dangerous and did not do any damage.

No warnings were issued during the afternoon on Tuesday by the National Weather Service.

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Brian Ferguson Home Invasion / Arson Trial Day One Recap

The trial for a Pana man accused of invading a former girlfriend’s home and setting it on fire began on Tuesday. 55-year-old Brian Ferguson is accused of the crimes that happened on November 20, 2016.

 

Christian County State’s Attorney Mike Havera presented police procedure evidence in day one of the trial. Witnesses called included Pana police officers that responded that night and an Illinois State Fire Marshal Arson Investigator that was assigned to the house fire. He also called witnesses that had interacted with Ferguson in the weeks leading up to the incident.


The state is expected to call one more witness when the case resumes. After that witness, the defense will begin presenting its case. Court will resume for Ferguson at 9 a.m. Wednesday morning.

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Taylorville Kiwanis Present 3 $500 Scholarships to THS Seniors

 

3 winners of 500-dollar scholarships each, were announced at the May 16 Taylorville Kiwanis Club Annual Cookout at Kiwanis Park on Lake Taylorville.

Kiwanis president Will Perkins (left) formally presented the checks to award winners (starting 2nd from left) Alaina Mann, Grace Markwell & Mallory Brotherton.

The scholarships are awarded annually based on an application process, to Taylorville High School seniors that are going to a college or university.

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Taylorville Kiwanis Hear About Hope House at Weekly Luncheon

Several members of the new Hope House Committee, were guests at Tuesday's Taylorville Kiwanis Club meeting to talk about the project to build a house to be used by families that have lost children due to death.  From the left:  Will Perkins, Kiwanis president; Jon Wamsley, committee member; Teresa St. Louis, committee member; Michael St. Louis, committee member who also spoke to the Club; Kiwanis member Dick Wamsley, father of Jon Wamsley and Kiwanis Spiritual Aims Committee chair.

 

HOPE HOUSE FEATURED TOPIC AT KIWANIS WEEKLY LUNCHEON

 

The Taylorville Kiwanis Club heard about the proposed Hope House for families that have had children pass away, during their Tuesday luncheon at the Taylorville Memorial Hospital auditorium.

Michael St. Louis was the guest speaker.  St. Louis is the parent of 2 pre-mature babies that died at birth.  He along with his wife Teresa, and 2 other local families that have lost children, formed the non-profit Hope House of Central Illinois, with the goal of building a home near Taylorville as a retreat for grieving families that have also lost children who have passed away.

St. Louis described the process he and his wife went thru after their 2 children died, trying to find the “new normal” and attempting to put a positive spin on their loss. 

St. Louis told the Kiwanis Club that according to the Illinois Department of Public Health, some 595 children age zero to 24 die within a 100-mile radius of Taylorville each year, which represents over 53-hundred family members and friends affected by the death of a child. 

St. Louis said the proposed Hope House will serve those family members who are trying to find their “new normal”, and that many have already volunteered to help with construction.  Fund raising efforts to purchase property are already underway.  More information can be found on-line at hopehouseofcentralillinois-dot-org.

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.
 

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New Scam Uses Popular Money Sweepstakes In Effort To Get You To Pay Them

 
A new scam is making it's way around the area that the Taylorville Police Department want people to be aware of. This latest scam involves someone calling you and saying they're with Publisher's Clearing House, and need money before they can give you your winnings.
 
Alan Mills with the Taylorville Police Department appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show to inform the public of this scam. Mills said the callers will tell people they need to pay money to cover fees before receiving their winning check.
 
 
Mills wants people to know that if something doesn't seem right with these calls, it's probably not. He understands why people get excited though, but wants them to know that once they pay these callers money, there's not much that can be done.
 
 
If you have any information on this scam or any other scam that's making its way around the area, contact the Taylorville Police Department, so they can make the public aware of the scam.

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Christian County YMCA Annual Golf Outing Helping to Provide Services to Low Income Families

 
The Christian County YMCA is preparing for their 11th annual Golf Outing fundraiser, that helps raise funds to support the YMCA and it's effort to provide services to low income families. The outing takes place on June 9th, and registration is still open for both golfers and sponsors.
 
Chris Weittenhiller, Executive Director of the Christian County YMCA had more details on the golf outing, and when the deadline is to register for the event.
 
 
The financial assistance program at the YMCA allows the YMCA to provide services to families and individuals who couldn't otherwise afford to take part in the programs that the YMCA provides. The Y also receives funding from several other sources that help support the program, however the golf outing provides a fun way for people to enjoy a game of golf, and support a good cause.
 
 
Weittenhiller appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.

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Taylorville Mayor Proclaims May 23rd as "Lincoln Land Community College Day"; Celebrates 50 Years of The College's Service with New Street Name

 
LLCC President, staff and Taylorville city officials gathered at the LLCC-Taylorville location today during the Community Partnership Group Meeting to not only celebrate 50 years of education services, but to receive a proclamation honor from Taylorville Mayor Bruce Barry, and a street name change from Taylorville Alderman Earl Walters. 
 
LLCC President Charlotte Warren (Ph.D.) provided opening remarks to the group on-hand about LLCC's history overall and the services the college has provided to students.
 
 
 
President Warren gave way to Taylorville Mayor Bruce Barry for a proclamation celebrating LLCC and naming May 23rd as "Lincoln Land Community College Day" in the city of Taylorville.
 
 
 
Taylorville Alderman, Earl Walters officially presented a new street sign to LLCC's President Warren with a brand new name of "Lincoln Land Way" to take place of the old "Lee Norse Drive".
 
 
  
 
The Taylorville LLCC outreach center was the final stop for President Warren and staff who have been visiting all the LLCC locations across Illinois.

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Crimestoppers Crime of the Week - May 23, 2017

This week Crimestoppers is seeking information in regards to criminal damage that occurred in Taylorville.

 

Sometime during the early morning hours of Tuesday, May 16, 2017, person or persons unknown used an item to damage a 2011 red Ford that was parked in the parking lot of the Taylorville Christian Church, located at 1124 North Webster Street.  The unknown subject or subjects scratched the letter X, the number 666, and what appeared to be the word “death” onto the vehicle.  The total dollar amount of the 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.  

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Second Annual Taylorville Sports Camp Looks to Connect High School / College and Young Athletes

After having 36 kids participate in the first annual Taylorville Youth Sports Camp, this year’s goal is more than 50 area children having fun and connecting with older athletes at the second annual event. The Youth Sports Camp will be held from June 12th through 16th, and multiple sports will be played throughout the week.

 

Event organizer and former Taylorville cross country runner Tommy O’Brien is now running cross country for Millikin University. He talks about the many games that kids will get to play.

 

 

O’Brien says there are multiple goals for the kids that are a part of the camp.

 

 

Preregistration runs until June 1st and costs $40 per child. After that, the cost is $50 per child. All money raised will be distributed among various youth sports programs in Taylorville. Any child is welcome to come have fun; you do not have to live in Taylorville to participate. Flyers can be picked up and turned in at Taylorville Junior High School. If you would like more information, you can give a call to O’Brien at 217-827-5940 or email him at teobrien@millikin.edu.

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Aerial Photography, Bakery, Handyman Services Presented at Christian County CEO Trade Show

Eight students participated in the Christian County CEO program this year, and the businesses they created were presented to the public last Thursday at the Lincoln Land Community College’s Taylorville campus. This is the second in a series of three stories featuring the businesses of those students.

 

Kyle Woods’ business is called KW Aerial Photography. It uses drone technology to get aerial photos and videos for clients. Woods says he had many ideas going in, but this is the one he decided on.

 

 

Alexis Gipson has always had an interest in baking, which led her to start “Bake Me Away” with the CEO program. Gipson talks about some of the products she offers.

 

 

Zebert Dunaway has been told he’s pretty handy around the house, so he started “Bert’s Odd Jobs.” He says there is a variety of the work he’s willing to provide.

 

 

The Christian County CEO Trade show was broadcast live on Groovy 97.3, WRAN.

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Insurance Policy Discussion, Park Manual Language Covered at Taylorville Park Board Meeting

Insurance policy discussion and park manual language was the main discussion points at the May meeting of the Taylorville Park Board. Topics included whether or not to cover the city pool itself under insurance and how to word an extended leave policy up for approval.

 

The meeting started with resident Jerry Cocagne speaking to the board about why the board dropped him as their insurance agent and why he wasn’t notified.

 

 

Park Board President Marlane Miller said while it was unfortunate that no contact was made and should have been made, the board was saving money and better insured without going through an agent. She also said 90 percent of other park districts using the IParks program have dropped their agents as well.

 

In old business, the board had a vote planned on how to word a new policy regarding extended sick leave in the park district manual. After several minutes of discussion, Miller said what the board seemed to be agreeing upon.

 

 

The board then approved the policy as read. Also brought up was the possibilty of adding insurance for the city pool to its insurance policy. Park District Administrator Mary Anne Becker said the pool itself has never been insured, and most districts don’t insure their pool because they are considered “indestructable”, but also pointed out there are multiple ways the pool could sustain damage. The discussion was tabled until the next meeting which is scheduled for June 26th.

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Taylorville Mayor Bruce Barry Says Recently Approved TIF Districts Will Help Attract Business to Taylorville

 
Taylorville is in the process of attempting to attract new businesses to town, and one aspect of that is the creation of TIF districts to give the area another tool to attract new businesses. The Taylorville City Council recently approved the creation of two TIF districts in the city to help lure businesses to the area.
 
Taylorville Mayor Bruce Barry says the creation of the TIF districts give the city another reason for people to move to the area.
 
 
Barry explained what a TIF district is, and the general areas of where the two TIF districts the city approved will be located.
 
 
Taylorville Mayor Bruce Barry appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.

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Taylorville Memorial Hospital Offering Mental Health First Aid Class to Prepare People to Help Those Dealing With Mental Health Issues

 
May is Mental Health Awareness month and many organizations in the community are trying to help raise awareness of the issue of mental health. Taylorville Memorial Hospital is doing their part by hosting a mental health first aid class to help teach participants how to identify signs of people potentially suffering from a mental health issue, and ways to help that person.
 
Kim Bourne, President and CEO of Taylorville Memorial Hospital appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show and discussed the class. The course will give people the skills to be able to help with a number of different issues.
 
 
Along with the class, TMH works alongside a local organization to help people who are currently going through a mental health crisis get the help that they need.
 
 
Nearly 44 million adults in America experience mental illness in a given year, and one in five adults experience a mental illness. To sign up for the Mental Health First Aid Classes, visit MemorialBehavioralHealth.org to sign up, or call the hospital at 824-1600.

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United Way of Christian County Holds 2018 Allocations Hearings

 
The United Way of Christian County recently held their 2018 member agency allocation hearings to determine what organizations will receive funding through the United Way of Christian County next year. The United Way of Christian County had one agency choose not to reapply, but also added an agency for 2018: Hope House of Central Illinois.
 
Susan Lawrence, Executive Director of the United Way of Christian County explained how the allocation hearing process works, and said although it's a long process, it's one of the organization's favorite times of the year.
 
 
The new agency the United Way added, Hope House of Central Illinois provides support for families experiencing the loss of a child by giving them a place to get away from the stresses of the situation. They plan to build a retreat center in Christian County near Taylorville.
 
 
Lawrence appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.

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Food Delivery Service, E-Recycling Businesses Created by Christian County CEO Students

Eight students participated in the Christian County CEO program this year, and the businesses they created were presented to the public last Thursday at the Lincoln Land Community College’s Taylorville campus. This is the first in a series of three stories featuring the businesses of those students.

 

Rhett Molen has created a online food delivery business called Taylorville Food Delivery dot com. He talks about how customers can place their orders.

 

 

Molen says his brother gave him the idea. His brother lives in Springfield and they have a food delivery service up there.

 

Brendan Watson has started a computer service and electronic recycling business called Title Computer Technologies. Watson talks about what his business provides its customers.

 

 

Watson says he wanted to do something with computers, and he says the profit margins in electronic recycling business right now are “mind-boggling.”

 

The Christian County CEO Trade show was broadcast live on Groovy 97.3, WRAN.

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Taylorville Post Office Has Record Breaking Year For Food Drive

The Taylorville Post Office had a record collection for the National Association of Letter Carriers’ “Stamp Out Hunger” food drive this year. The Taylorville office collected over 20,000 pounds or 10 tons of food for those in the area in need. This was the 25th year the drive has been held nationwide.

 

Brent Cornell is the food drive coordinator at the Taylorville Post Office. He says that handing out bags has played a big role in collection numbers in recent years.

 

 

Cornell says one retired letter carrier in particular did great work for this year’s drive.

 

 

The “Stamp Out Hunger” food drive happens the second Saturday in May every year. If you would still like to donate food for the cause, you can bring it in to the post office anytime.

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More Changes Coming for HSHS Good Shepherd Hospital in Shelbyville

HSHS Good Shepherd Hospital in Shelbyville recently made a change in the CEO position. Aaron Puchbauer (poo-bower) has stepped in and become the new President and CEO of the hospital, as the hospital continues it's transition as a new member of the HSHS Health System.
 
Puchbauer explained what attracted him to the position at HSHS Good Shephered in Shelbyville.
 
 
Marilyn Sears, COO of the hospital discussed why the hospital, formerly known as Shelby Memorial Hospital affiliated itself with the HSHS system.
 
 
With the new CEO and HSHS affiliation, many changes are being planned for the hospital, including an event being held at the hospital on June 1st, designed to help people eat better.
 
 
Along with new events, the hospital is investing money into improving the hospital, in order to increase the level of care provided at the hospital.
 
 
Puchbauer and Sears both appeared as guests on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show live from our downtown Shelbyville Studios.

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Area Honor Flight Participants Excited for the Opportunity

One Taylorville, three Shelbyville, and an Assumption veteran will be participating in the upcoming Land of Lincoln honor flight to Washington D.C. Tuesday, and they are looking forward to the experience. Alan Collebrusco of Taylorville, and Ron Chaney, Ed Henne, and Ken Rigan all of Shelbyville, and Ron Clutter of Assumption will be making the journey to D.C. to check out the war memorials, along with other important sites in the nation’s capital.

 

Collebrusco says he looks forward to seeing the World War II memorial.

 

 

Chaney is also excited for the trip. He says a friend told him about the Honor Flight program.

 

 

Their day will start before the sun rises on Tuesday for the flight. 81 veterans, along with a guardian for each, will be participating in the flight. The Land of Lincoln Honor Flight has been serving veterans in Illinois since May of 2009.

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Louisville Slugger Museum Brings Its Act to Springfield

The Louisville Slugger Museum and Factory is bringing an exhibit this weekend to the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum in Springfield. Louisville Slugger Museum Curator Chris Meiman (My-men) says the exhibit today and Sunday (5/20 and 5/21) is a perfect fit with the existing Cards and Cubs rivalry exhibit at the museum. As you might expect, they're bringing some lumber along.



The exhibit has something for every baseball fan of every age, including a mainstay of the Kentucky museum.



While the Louisville Slugger exhibit will remain through the weekend, the Cubs and Cards Rivalry exhibit continues through year's end.

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Southeastern Illinois Farmer Says Industry Needs to Speak Up to State and Federal Lawmakers

A south-eastern Illinois farmer hopes key decision makers are hearing from his industry. Dennis Green farms outside of Lawrenceville—near the Indiana border. He says it’s important for his colleagues to speak up, especially to state and federal lawmakers.



And Green says farmers also need to listen and learn from other farmers on various practices, like no-till. Steve Stallman of Chester knows about that. 



Stallman has received almost a foot of rain in his area of the state, but still has 85-percent of his corn planting complete. 

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Commodity Markets Concerning Many Illinois Farmers

Shaky commodity markets continue to be on the minds of some Illinois farmers as spring planting marches on in many parts of the state. The weak markets concern McHenry County farmer Michelle Aavang.



The northern Illinois farmer has been watching new farm bill discussions and debate closely. But, she says there’s still a long way to go in developing what could serve as a farm safety net for her and other farmers beyond next year. 



Aavang represents DeKalb, Kane, Lake and McHenry Counties on the Illinois Farm Bureau Board of Directors. She, her husband and son raise crops and livestock near the northern Illinois town of Woodstock.

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Taylorville Native Ambassador Family for March of Dimes March for Babies Sunday

Over 100 walkers turned out for the annual March of Dimes March for Babies at Washington Park in Springfield.  The event is held each year to raise money to help the March of Dimes in its efforts to prevent premature births and infant mortality.

Taylorville native Sheri Miller was the 2017 Ambassador Family for the event.  Sheri lost her daughter Alexis 40 minutes after birth in April of 2011, due to the baby having underdeveloped lungs.

Sheri led this year's March for Babies, and said she walked today to remember Lexi and other premature babies that didn't make it.

Sunday's March of Dimes March for Babies raised some 39-thousand dollars.  You can give on-line at teamprincessalexis.org.

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Missions for Taylorville Looking for Volunteers for Upcoming Work Day

Missions for Taylorville is looking to clean up the city, and they need your help. The group is looking for volunteers for its work day coming up on June 3rd. No special skills are required to volunteer. All that is needed is a helping heart and a willingness to take part in creating a more attractive Taylorville.

 

Missions for Taylorville coordinator Bill Kerns says the organization would like for volunteers to sign up early to save everyone valuable time on June 3rd.

 

 

Although signing up beforehand is important, it is not required. Kerns says there will be work for anyone that shows up on the work day.

 

 

Volunteers should meet at the Taylorville Memorial Hospital auditorium on June 3rd at 8:30 a.m. to receive their work assignments. Kerns says that there could be more than 50 projects they look to complete that day.

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Christian County 911 to Conduct Wireline Tests Next Week

Christian County 911 will be testing wireline numbers in the Shelby County area from Monday, May 22 through Friday, May 26th between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m.

 

These tests will determine network accuracy and location detail for each wireline phone prefix within Shelby County. This procedure is required to make a successful test with a minimum of 10% of the wireline numbers. A public safety telecommunicator will make a call to the number and ask that a return call is made using a test code. This will replicate a 911 call enabling a verification of data.

 

On July 3, Christian County 911 will begin providing enhanced 911 services for the Shelby County area, including calls for wireline, wireless and VoIP.

 

If you have any questions or comments, please contact Mickie Ehrhardt, Christian County 911 Administrator at (217) 287-7911.

 

The Christian-Shelby Joint Emergency Telephone System Board meets on the 2nd Monday of each Month at 5:30 p.m. at the Pana Police Department, Pana, IL. The public is welcome to attend.

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Local Students Honored in Art Contest Sponsored by Congressman Rodney Davis

A Taylorville High School senior and junior were honored recently in the 13th District's Congressional Art Competition. JT Boehme, a junior at THS, won first place for the piece called "Processing Nature" shown below.

 

 

Victoria Hart, a senior at THS, received third place for her piece "First Model" below.

 

 

Another piece by Boehme, "Writer's Block" shown below, was chosen as the Fan Favorite by Davis' Facebook followers.

 

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American Pickers Show Coming Through Illinois in June

Do you have a noteworthy collection? Do you think it could impress Mike and Frank on American Pickers? You could have your shot to show off your collection next month! The History Channel Hit Show will be traveling across Illinois in June, and they are looking for collections to check out along the way!

 

Cat with American Pickers says there are multiple ways to reach out to the show.

 

 

She says the show’s journey through the state will depend on who contacts them about collections.

 

 

Cat says the pair especially like to check out collections with local history ties. She says the sooner the better if you would like to contact the show to come see you this go-around.

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Shelbyville Schools Wrapping Up Another School Year

The school year is wrapping up for many schools around the region, including Shelbyville schools. Although the year is wrapping up, there are still several events and programs that aren't quite done.
 
Denise Bense, Superintendent of the Shelbyville School District says the next big event her office is preparing for is for graduation ceremonies for the Shelbyville High School Seniors.
 
 
Shelbyville athletics are still in action as well, with track and field events still taking place, and the Shelbyville softball team participating in their regional tournament.
 
 
Bense appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show live from our downtown Shelbyville Studios.
 

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CCEDC is One Step Closer to Receiving Federal Funds for Taylorville Industrial Park

The Christian County Economic Development Corporation is one step closer to securing federal funds to go towards the Taylorville Industrial Park. The Economic Development Administration notified the CCEDC on May 11th that they would like to receive a full application for public works funding for the new industrial park. This comes after a pre-application was submitted making a case for funding for Taylorville’s Industrial Park.

 

CCEDC Executive Director Mary Renner says the money being applied for would supplement money already raised.

 

 

Renner says the next step in the process could be lengthy.

 

 

Renner says an important step in this process is identifying companies that will commit to moving to Taylorville within five years if federal funding is awarded. If anyone is interested in learning more, you can call Renner at 638-5032.

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60th Annual Pana Days This Weekend

It’s that time of year again, the 60th annual Pana Days are this weekend at the Tri-County Fairgrounds in Pana. The festival kicked off Thursday night with the carnival opening up to the public. The event also includes craft vendors, food, and numerous events throughout the weekend.

 

Pana Chamber of Commerce President Regina Agney says there is one big change this year that will give area residents more opportunity to swing by.

 

 

Agney talks about some of the events that are happening live on Genuine County WMKR.

 

 

Armbands for carnival rides cost $20 or $1 per ticket. The event being put on by the Pana Chamber of Commerce runs through the weekend.

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USTR Notifies Congress of Intent to Renegotiate NAFTA

The U.S. Trade Representative Thursday notified Congress of the administration's intent to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement. The negotiations can now begin in 90 days, as outlined by law after a notification letter is sent to Congress. In a call with reporters, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said President Donald Trump is fulfilling a key promise by starting the renegotiation process.

 

 

Lighthizer says the USTR office will begin working on negotiation intentions immediately.

 

 

Lighthizer says he spoke with his counterparts in Mexico and Canada, adding all three nations will benefit from the renegotiation.

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Free Fishing Tournament for Kids Coming Up

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers at Lake Shelbyville want kids 13 and under interested in fishing to join them on June 3rd for a free fishing tournament at Opossum Pond. The pond is located near the entrance to the Opossum Creek Recreation Area, and registration will begin at 8:30 a.m. on that Saturday morning. There will be three competing age groups for ages six and under, seven to nine, and 10 to 12, with prizes in each category for “:Most Fish”, “Biggest Fish”, and “Smallest Fish”.

 

Corps of Engineers Park Ranger Sarah Haslett says the tournament is a great way for parents and kids alike to learn how to fish.

 

 

Haslett says there are safety measures that kids are required to follow, and that means the parents will need to make sure to have some extra equipment.

 

 

Haslett asks that all parents pre-register their children if possible. The number to call to pre-register is 217-774-3951, ext. 2.

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USDA Approves Modifications to Margin Protection Plan of Insurance for Crops

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Risk Management Agency this week announced greater crop insurance options for farmers against unexpected decreases in their operating margin. Offered through the federal crop insurance program, margin protection insurance for corn, wheat, rice and soybeans will be available in more states and have updates designed to better clarify the real input costs covered beginning in 2018.

 

The RMA is expanding margin protection for corn and soybeans to Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota and Wisconsin. The expansion also includes a harvest price option, which allows farmers to get the greater price so they can rebound faster. Margin protection insurance is privately-developed and first became available in 2016 to provide coverage based on an expected margin, which is the expected area revenue minus the expected area operating costs, for each applicable crop, type and practice.

 

A producer may choose coverage from 70 percent to 95 percent of their expected margin. The last day to purchase a margin protection policy for corn, soybeans, and spring wheat is September 30, 2017.

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Freshman Lawmaker Blasts State Agency Over Costly Memberships

A Quad City area state lawmaker criticizing costly memberships within the Illinois Department of Innovation and Technology. State Representative Mike Halpin says the agency’s consulting memberships have already cost taxpayers $208,000. He says the Governor needs to take a stand as well. 



Halpin says in April, the memberships made headlines when $71 million was transferred by then Comptroller Leslie Munger out of the General Revenue Fund and deposited into various other funds, some of which went to pay for the agency’s memberships. Halpin was just elected last November. 

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Champaign Area Start-Up Aims to Keep Top Ag Talent in Illinois

The ag industry remains focused on hiring and retaining top talent. That’s the mission of Champaign based Agrible, Inc. They’re home to agronomists, scientists and developers—who work for the grower in the field says the company’s Cynthia Bruno.



Luke Zwilling has been with the start-up since the beginning and says their location provides a great advantage.



The company opened in 2012 and now features a staff of 53 employees.

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Good Crowd Attends Christian County CEO Trade Show

 

A good crowd attended Thursday night's Christian County C-E-O, or "Creating Entrepreneurial Opportunities" Trade Show at Lincoln Land Community College's Taylorville campus.

7 of the 8 students completing this year's C-E-O program, kicked off their new businesses.  One student was absent due to a death in the family.

C-E-O facilitator Dick Adams, completing his 2nd year in the role, told Regional Radio News this year's group of students were great entrepreneurs.

The C-E-O Trade Show was broadcast live on groovy 97-point-3 W-R-A-N.

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Sights and Sounds of Citizens for Education Rally in Springfield Wednesday

 

Representatives from the Citizens for Education committee in Taylorville spoke at the Rally and Footrace for Fair School Funding on Wednesday, you can see the full video above.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Christian County 4-H Program Partnering with Christian County YMCA to Offer Local Food Class for Area Youth

 
The Christian County 4-H program is partnering with the Christian County YMCA and their summer program to offer during the summer classes to help teach kids about where the food they eat comes from, and how they can eat and grow food locally.
 
Peggy Hampton, 4-H Youth and Development Educator with the U of I Extension Office  discussed the partnership, including details on when the classes will take place.
 
 
The classes will teach the kids taking the classes about locally grown food, and will give them a chance to grow their own foods as well.
 
 
Parents who are interested in signing their children up for the classes can do so at the Christian County YMCA through their summer program. Hampton appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.

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Ken Hart with People's Bank and Trust Earns Lifetime Achievement Award from the ECIDC

Recently Ken Hart, a local member of the community was given the Greater Taylorville Chamber of Commerce's Lifetime Achievement award. The work Hart has done over the years is continuing to be recognized, as he is also the recipient of the lifetime achievement award from the East Central Illinois Development Corporation.
 
Patty Hornbuckle, CEO of the Greater Taylorville Chamber of Commerce appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show and discussed the award, and the work Hart has done over the years.
 
 
Hornbuckle reflect on some of the work Hart has done over the years, and that the Chamber is fully supportive of Hart and the work he's done.
 
 
Hornbuckle also thanked those who have helped put the basket for Hart together.

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Several Groups Working to Treat Mental Health Issues in Christian County

May is mental health awareness month, and the Christian County Sheriff's Office is working to help fight the issue in Christian County. The County also provides programs such as mental health court to help people who are dealing with legal issues as a result of mental illness.
 
Christian County Sheriff Bruce Kettelkamp appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning show to discuss mental health, and what the county is doing to help those suffering from mental health problems. One thing the county jail does is provides mental health treatment for inmates.
 
 
Kettelkamp is also a part of the mental health court team in Christian County, and spoke highly of the work that the mental health court has done.
 
 
Another point that Kettelkamp wanted to make was that the negative stigma surrounding mental health needs to change, and that those dealing with mental health problems should seek treatment.

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Tornado Wrestling Foundation to Host Mouse Races Fundraiser

Race Day is coming on June 3… Mouse Races that is! The Tornado Wrestling Foundation will be hosting their 2017 Mouse Races Fundraiser at the Christian County Fairgrounds on Saturday June 3. Doors will open at 6 p.m., with races starting at 7. The event will only be for those 21 and older, and will feature complementary beer, a cash bar, and other games that night.

 

Tornado Wrestling Foundation Treasurer Gerry Mahr says Taylorville wrestling coach Lee Mateer brought the idea to town after seeing its success in neighboring communities.

 

 

Mahr says between each race, there will be other ways for people to enjoy themselves or try their luck.

 

 

Tickets can be purchased in advance for $15, or at the door for $20. Businesses can also sponsor a mouse as well. For more information on tickets or sponsoring a mouse, Mahr says to give him a call at 306-5140.

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What is the CEP Program Starting in Taylorville Elementary Schools Next Year?

Last Monday, the Taylorville school board voted to try out the CEP program for Pre-K through 4th grade students in the district. But what is the CEP program, and what are the benefits for the district and the students?

 

CEP stands for Community Eligibility Provision, and it’s a federally funded program to feed all students breakfasts and lunches at no cost to the students and families. Districts can choose to participate at certain schools, or an entire district can participate if they meet the qualifications. There are many districts across the state that have signed up for the program. One of those district’s is the East Alton Elementary School District, about 20 miles northeast of St. Louis. The district has about 550 students in Kindergarten through 5th grade. East Alton has just completed their second cycle in the program. The school district participates in the program district-wide, from Pre-K through 8th grade.

 

Jill Miller is the Curriculum Instruction Coordinator for the East Alton School District, and she coordinates the CEP program in the district. She says one of the benefits for the district is there is a lot less paperwork to deal with on the front end, along with feeding every student in the district.

 

 

The plan in Taylorville is to try the program at the elementary level to start, and possibly add higher grade levels in future years. Taylorville Superintendent Dr. Greg Fuerstenau said told Regional Radio News after the May board meeting that the time had come for the district to make a decision on where to take the breakfast and lunch services going forward.

 

 

 

Miller says a school or district must re-apply for the program every four years. She says the program is a blessing for the district and for the families.

 

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Mexican Customers of U.S. Grains Talk About Importance of Trade

A team of customers of U.S. grains in Mexico is in the United States this week to talk with farmers and lawmakers about the importance of trade between the two countries. NAFB's Micheal Clements has more....
 

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AFBF Welcomes Beef Trade Deal with China

The recent announcement of an agreement to restart U.S. beef exports to China could be worth more than $2 billion to U.S. agriculture. AFBF Senior Director of Congressional Relations Dave Salmonsen says the China beef market is growing, and China is looking to purchase more beef.
 
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Part of the agreement with China includes poultry and biotechnology approvals.
 
                     
 
The target date to complete the agreement is July 17th of this year. Salmonsen says U.S. beef could then be exported to China.
 
         
 
That’s AFBF Senior Director of Congressional Relations Dave Salmonsen.

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Bustos Awaiting Infrastructure Plan From Trump

Western Illinois Congresswoman Cheri Bustos looking for a defined infrastructure plan from President Trump, but says his administration remains too riddled with questions concerning ties to Russia.



Bustos made her remarks on the House Floor Wednesday. 

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Over 1,100 Illinois Farmers Respond to Action Request

A request to support reform the federal government's process to create and enforce environmental regulations stirred some 1,100 farmers into action. Illinois Farm Bureau asked farmers to actively support a so-called "back to basics” effort by new federal Environmental Protection Agency administrator Scott Pruitt. IFB President Rich Guebert explains what it's about.



And as for Springfield, Guebert says farmers await action on a state budget just like many other interests throughout Illinois.



Guebert farms in Ellis Grove in Randolph County. 

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Rauner Offers Pro-Senate, Anti-House Message

Governor Bruce Rauner has good things to say about one chamber of the Illinois General Assembly, the other not so much. On one hand, he says he's cheering on the Senate as the chamber continues to consider the Grand Bargain series of bills.



The temperature in the room cools a little when Rauner offers his opinions on the Illinois House.



The Senate is expected to renew voting on bills tied to the Grand Bargain.

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