Local News

Area Arrests

Police were called to the Roller Rink in Taylorville Saturday night just before 9 on reports of underage drinking. Employees of the facility told the police that two female juveniles had admitted to drinking. The girls were arrested on charges of illegal consumption of alcohol.

40 year-old  Starla D. Hostetler of Pana was arrested on a bond forfeiture warrant for an unspecified statute. 

18 year-old Heather R. Beck of Tower Hill was arrested for theft. 

35 year-old Robert W. Oliver of Taylorville was arrested for sex offender presence. 

32 year-old Keri C. Ellis of Taylorville was arrested on a bond forfeiture warrant for fraudulent practice. 

63 year-old Gary W. Allen of Taylorville was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol. 

20 year-old Allister D. Billings of Taylorville was arrested for obstructing justice. 

 50 year-old Susan M. Henderson of Oklahoma and 46 year-old Scott P. Foster of Oklahoma, OK were both  arrested for cannabis trafficking, possession of cannabis more than 5000 grams, manufacturing and delivering cannabis more than 5000 grams, and unlawful use of a weapon. 

Travis M. Gregg, 27, of Pana was arrested for criminal trespassing, possession control, and illegal possession of a weapon. 

Julie C. Paulis, 33, of Springfield was arrested for telephone harassment. 

Debbie R. Horn, 42, of Taylorville was arrested for possession control. 

Brandon M. Stone, 29, of Taylorville was arrested for sonsumption of liquor. 


Tires Slashed in Pana

Pana Police are investigation a series of tire damage incidents on S. Locust Street last Thursday. Pana residents Andrew M. Golden, Donald H. Rakers, Zack Coleman, and Teri A Cravens all reported damage to their tires. The vehicles were parked in a City Parking lot on S. Locust at the time. If you know who may be responsible for these vandalisms you are urged to call Pana Police

Crime Stoppers Seeking Information About an Aggravated Battery and Arson

This week CRIME STOPPERS is seeking information about an aggravated battery and an arson that occurred in Taylorville.

Sometime just before 6:00 am on Friday January 20, 2012, an unknown male subject struck a female subject from behind while she was at her residence, located at1203 West Spresser Street.  The suspect then left the scene walking in an unknown direction.  The male suspect was described as about 6’0” with a shaved head and wearing dark clothing.  On Tuesday January 24, 2012 at 6:50 am, a fire broke out at the same location.  The fire has been ruled an arson. The total amount of damage is not known at this time.  It is believed that the 2 incidents may be related. 

Please call CRIME STOPPERS if you have any information about this crime or any other crimes or wanted persons. CRIME STOPPERS will pay cash rewards up to $1,000.00 for information that leads to an arrest and you DO NOT have to give your name. CRIME STOPPERS will pay double the normal reward for information leading to an arrest for the crime of the week.

You can contact CRIME STOPPERS at 824-9100, at our website ChristianCountyCrimeStoppers.org, or by texting CRIMES (274637) keyword CCCS and then your tip.  As always you will remain anonymous.


Obama Chrysler On eBay For One-Million Dollars

A pricey piece of pre-presidential history is up for grabs on eBay.  Lisa Czibor is auctioning the 2005 Chrysler 300C sedan President Obama drove while he was still the senator from Illinois.

Quinn: Schools Should Cover Pension Costs

Governor Quinn is hinting at having school districts pick up more of the state's burden for teacher pension costs.  Mercer County School District Superintendent Alan Boucher says that could just about kill their budget.

Funding Must Support Dropout Age Boost

Governor Quinn wants to boost the student dropout age from 17 to 18, but one education official says there's more to it than meets the eye.  Sangamon County Regional Superintendent Jeff Vose says Quinn must consider how to pay for it.

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The State's Regional Offices of Education coordinate Truancy Programs across the state.  Vose says they assisted about 15-thousand-800 truant students during the 2010-2011 school year.  Sixty of those were in Sangamon County. 

U.S Army Corps of Engineers at Lake Shelbyville Needing Volunteers

Do you love the outdoors and would like to give back to Lake Shelbyville by keeping it a beautiful place to visit?  If so, then the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers at Lake Shelbyville would like for you to become a volunteer.   The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is looking for motivated volunteers to adopt flowerbeds, trails, clean facilities and pick up litter within the campgrounds at Lake Shelbyville. In return for the valuable service, volunteers may receive free camping for every four hours of volunteer service within a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers managed campground at Lake Shelbyville. 

Several flowerbeds are available for adoption.  Some are conveniently located at the Lake Shelbyville Visitor Center and the others are located in Bo Wood and Coon Creek Recreation Areas     Groups or individuals can adopt a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers hiking trail or section of a trail.  This is a great opportunity for scout troops and organized school or community groups.      

Individuals or groups can also volunteer to pick up litter behind campsites in the campgrounds managed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.  This can be done on days that are convenient for the volunteer including weekends and can be considered as community service.       If you are interested in any of these volunteer projects at Lake Shelbyville, please contact Park Ranger Annie Hickman at 217-774-3951 ext. 7007 or by e-mail at anna.e.hickman@usace.army.mil.


Deer Car Collisions Still a Problem

Police reports continue to show deer-car collisions are still a problem.  Christian County Sheriff Bruce Kettelkamp says there are various devices people use to try to diminish the danger, but the best strategy is to just slow down:

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Police reports lately have shown several deer-car collisions in the county each week.

Mayor Gives Tenaska Update

Christian County residents are still hoping the Tenaska Plant will be a go.  Taylorville Mayor Greg Brotherton says Mary Renner of Christian County Economic Development is keeping him up to date on the progress:

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The proposed $3.5 billion cutting edge clean coal gasification plant would be built near Taylorville, bringing hundreds of jobs to the area.

Henry Says Bring Your Information

If you’re just now getting around to getting your 2010 taxes filed, Lori Henry of H and R Block has some advice about what paperwork you will need:

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Lori says if you are expecting your tax refund this weekend, you may have to wait.  Some technical issues with a new IRS filing system may delay some returns.  Those who filed electronically between January 17th and 24th are likely to receive their refunds by February 7th.  Those filing electronically before January 17th may also see some delays.  Henry says the IRS is apologizing for the expected delays.

You can call H and R Block if you need help.  They have offices in Taylorville, Pana, Nokomis and Shelbyville.

Illinois Leading The Charge For Renewable Energy

Illinois is among the top states in the nation when it comes to renewable energy.  Kevin Borgia, with the Illinois Wind Energy Coalition, says recent growth will have a strong impact in Southern Illinois.

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Borgia says increased renewable energy could also translate to stable energy costs for homeowners and businesses. That means it could ward off more potential rate hikes.  Illinois added more turbines than any other state last year and ranks fourth in the nation when it comes to overall wind energy.

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Kevin Borgia, with the Illinois Wind Energy Coalition, says recent growth is having a positive economic impact on the state.

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Kevin Borgia, with the Illinois Wind Energy Coalition, says that's great news for the environment.


Damp winter weather last Thursday night did not stop over 370 Christian County residents from coming to the Central Illinois Food Bank - Mobile Food Pantry, held at the Taylorville Fire Department.  Central Illinois Food Bank Bo width=ard President Amy Hagen says they weren’t sure how the event would work out:

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Ten Thousand pounds of food was brought in from the Food Bank Warehouse in Springfield. Viddy's Cab Service of Taylorville provided rides to people FREE of charge to and from the Mobile Food Pantry. The Mobile Food Pantry was held from 5-7 pm, and was on a first come first serve basis.  This is the 6th mobile food pantry in Christian County since 2010.

City Hopes For Money From Magazine Contest

Whether you know it or not, the City of Taylorville is in the middle of a heated competition.  Reader’s Digest Magazine is running a contest which could mean money for the city’s coffers.  Mayor Greg Brotherton says a lot of votes are still needed:

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If you’d like to vote, go to readersdigest.com backslash America.

New Steakhouse in Taylorville

If your mouth is watering for a juicy steak, you have a new option in Taylorville to satisfy your craving.  Chris’ Steakhouse recently opened in the former Gambino’s location.  Owner Chris Orange says opening a steakhouse is something he’s always wanted to do:

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Orange says he has a special way of preparing the steaks:

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Chris’ Steakhouse is at 923 W. Spresser in Taylorville.

Monicals 10th anniversary

It may be hard to believe, but a Shelbyville restaurant is celebrating a milestone, according to Tad Mayhall of the Shelbyville Chamber of Commerce:

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Monicals is at 1900 W. Main in Shelbyville.

Area Arrests

Travis M. Gregg, 27, of Pana was arrested for criminal trespassing, possession control, and illegal possession of a weapon. 

Julie C. Paulis, 33, of Springfield was arrested for telephone harassment. 

Debbie R. Horn, 42, of Taylorville was arrested for possession control. 

Brandon M. Stone, 29, of Taylorville was arrested for sonsumption of liquor. 


Chili Fundraiser for Fred Ronnow

If you’re planning a Superbowl party for this weekend, you may be serving chili fries, chili dogs, or chili dip, and the Friends of Fred can help. A fundraiser for Fred Ronnow, President and CEO of the Greater Taylorville Chamber of Commerce will take place Friday.

Chili by the quart will be sold from the old Palmer Bank Building on Wbester Street from 4:30 until 7:00pm. The chili will be brewed using the popular Chillifest recipe. Curb service will be offered so you won’t have to got out of your car. They are asking 10$ a quart, with the proceeds going to Fred and his family to help with costs accumulated during his illness. You can also drop off a donation at Palmer Bank or mail it.

Again, that event is at the OLD Palmer Bank location, next to Taco Bell, this Friday from 4:30 to 7:00pm

Taylorville Police Still Looking for Robbers

arrests in the case of a robbery that took place last month. It was shortly before 7:00pm on December 4th when police were dispatched to 403 E. Park Street after a 911 call. The female told officers that three men, two of whom were armed, had forced their way into their home and demanded her medication. The men then fled the residence with the medication and an undetermined amount of cash. The Taylorville Police Department is asking that anyone having information concerning this incident to please call the department at 824-2211, or Christian County Crimestoppers at 824-9100

Autopsy Shows Cause of Death in Accident

Preliminary autopsy results show a Taylorville man died of blunt force injuries in an accident early Saturday morning.   According to Christian County Coroner Amy Winans, 59 year-old Michael S. Coleman was pronounced dead at the scene of the three vehicle accident.  Reports indicate Coleman crossed the center line into the path of a pick-up truck driven by 20 year-old Dylan Flowers.  The two vehicles were then struck by a bus driven by 55 year-old Christine M. Smith. 

Flowers was reportedly taken to a Springfield hospital for treatment of what were described as non-life threatening injuries.  Smith was apparently uninjured.

Toxicology reports are still pending.  The Illinois State Police are investigating the crash

Taylorville Tornado Wrestling Team Defeats Clinton

The Taylorville Tornado wrestling team continued their dominance with a convincing victory over Clinton on Thursday. The Tornadoes ran their overall record to 16 wins against 1 loss with a 66 to 14 score over the Clinton Maroons. Winners for the Tornadoes were:


Caleb Dean at 106 lbs by forfeit

Nick Flannell at 113 lbs by fall at 3:24

Kidd Morrison at 120 lbs by forfeit

Jake Smothers at 126 lbs by fall at 2:48

Keane Rogers at 138 lbs by fall at 2:53

Aaron Herkert at 152 lbs by fall at 4:58

Brock Letcher at 170 lbs by forfeit

Dalton Stokes at 182 lbs by fall at 1:06

Heath Garner at 195 lbs by fall at 2:56

Kyle Tex at 220 lbs by fall at :57

Blake Hooper at heavyweight by forfeit


Stay tuned for more wrestling results from the young, upcoming Taylorville Tornado wrestling team.

Quinn: Boost Dropout Age To 18

Governor Quinn is answering President Obama's call to boost the student dropout age from 17 to 18.  His spokesperson Annie Thompson says it's part of his plan to improve education for all students in the state.

Social Media Protection From Employers

Some Illinois employers are asking potential hires for the passwords to their social networking sites but one lawmaker says that's just not right.  Representative LaShawn Ford says your Facebook and Twitter accounts should be your own personal property.

Christian County Sheriff's Office Warns About Scams

The Christian County Sheriff’s Office would like to warn you about a growing problem throughout the United States: Financial Exploitation scams.

Recently, another area resident was contacted by a man identifying himself as a representative of Publishers Clearing House. The individual, who spoke with a Jamaican accent, told the recipient that they had won a prize and that in order to complete the process they would need to send money to an account. Afterwards, the prize money would then be deposited into their account.  When the initial approach did not work, the caller became belligerent and threatening. Fortunately the recipient did not fall for this scam and alerted the Sheriff’s Office.

Last year we there were several scams involving Western Union. You’re reminded to be cautious if you are solicited via phone, or email, to send money. These scams are generally directed towards elderly victims. Scammers often cite bad phone connections in foreign countries as to the reason why their voices don’t seem right. If you are unsure, please contact this office or your local law enforcement agency.

Anyone with information pertaining to any crime is requested to contact the Christian County Sheriff’s Office (824-4961), their local law enforcement agency or Christian County Crime Stoppers at (1-800-568-TIPS) or (824-9100)

Former Speed Shop Building in Taylorville Being Demolished


The building that housed various motorcycle speed shops over the years in Taylorville is being demolished.

The building, located in the 800 block of West Springfield Road on Illinois Route 29 across from Taylorville High School, began its demolition on Friday.

Joe Coleman Salvage of Pana is doing the work.

Taylorvile Girls Basketball

As heard on WTIM the Taylorville girls beat Decatur eisenhour with a score of 61 to 55.

Shelbyville Basketball

As heard on WRAN Shelbyville lost to Unity with a score of 63 to 52.

New Lead Paint Changes

Anyone who does paid renovations on structures built before 1978 must be certified by the U.S Environmental Protection Agency before they can work.  Melanie Arnold with the state's Department of Public Health says workers must take certain steps to protect people from lead poisoning.

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Lead poisoning can cause health problems such as kidney disease, high blood pressure and birth defects.  All painters, contractors, property managers and other repair workers have to take an eight hour training course in order to get certified.  The IDPH is holding informational meetings across the state to help workers learn more about the law and take steps toward certification.  For meeting dates and times contact the Lead Program at 217-782-3517.

College Illinois Tuition Program Rebounding

State Representative Jim Durkin says the Illinois Student Assistance Commission has stopped the bleeding to the College Illinois program.  He says he's introducing legislation to help protect it from further troubles.

The National Barber College Held Ribbon Cutting Ceremony Thursday

 width=The National Barber College, at 137 E Main Cross inTaylorville, welcomed the Greater Taylorville Chamber of Commerce for a ribbon cutting ceremony Thursday. Debra Turvey, owner and instructor, opened the doors in late December, bringing an opportunity for future employment to Taylorville and the surrounding communities. Debra commented that barber shops are making a comeback and that many small communities lost their barber shops years ago. Through the National Barber College you will be equipped to pass the State of Illinois Boards that are a requirement. If you are interested in becoming a barber, contact Debra at 217-414-5416.

The National Barber College will be offering free haircuts during the months of January and February. Not only does this save you money, but this gives the students the hands on experience they will need to have in order to get started.

Local Area Accidents

50 year old Carol A. Fesser, of Taylorville, was traveling south on Campbell approaching the stop sign at Franklin.  Fesser reportedly said she saw a vehicle traveling east but did not see 68 year old Lon W. MCCloske traveling west on Franklin before she proceeded into the intersection.  McCloske told deputies he saw Fesser, and tried to avoid the crash but could not.  No injuries were reported. 

24 year old Kyle S. Hancock, of Nokomis, was traveling south on county hwy. #1 at about 278 north.  He reportedly lost control on the ice covered roadway and drove off into the east ditch, hitting  a large power pole.  There was no damage to the utility pole.  Hancock had damage to the driver door and driver side of his 1992 Honda Civic.

19 year old Taylor R. Kocerek was driving north on county hwy. #5 about 1750 north.  A deer entered the roadway from the west and crossed in front of Kocerek.  Kocerek apparently hit the deer in the roadway, drove away from the scene and came to the Christian County Sheriff's Department to make the report.  Kocerek was not injured.

A Cargo trailer full of scrap metal overturned Monday in the 100 block of N. Hickory Street in Pana after an apparent trailer hitch malfunction. According to reports, the accident caused damage to the street and curbing and to a yard. 49-year-old Michael A. Yucas of Springfield was cited for spilling a load on a highway. 

Arson, Assault: Related?

It’s either quite a coincidence, or two incidents are related. Either way, police can use your help. It began just before 6:00am last Friday, when Taylorville police were summoned to 1203 W. Spresser. 49-year-old Julie E. Payne told them she’d been hit in the head by a man described as being 6feet tall, muscular, dressed in a mask, and coveralls. Payne was taken to Taylorville Memorial Hospital where she was treated and released. Then Tuesday just before 7:00am authorities were called again on reports of a fire at the same address. According to the police department, no one was home at the time. The Illinois State Fire Marshall’s office was called in and preliminary indications are that the fire was an act of arson.

Police are still trying to determine if the two incidents are connected. If you know anything about these events, you’re asked to contact the Taylorville Police Department or Christian County Crimstoppers.

Mobile Food Pantry Thursday Night

The Central Illinois Food Bank’s Mobile Food Pantry was in Taylorville Thursday night. Amy Hagen of the Food Bank says they got some unexpected help:

Aviation Display at Taylorville Municipal Airport

If you’re interested in the history of aviation, you’re in luck. The Taylorville Municipal Airport houses an extensive collection charting back to the Wright Brothers. Local aviation expert John McClure, who has donated the collection to the airport, says he’s especially proud of one display:

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You can stop by the airport anytime if you’d like to see the display. No appointment is necessary and there is no charge. The collection also boasts scale model plants, tanks, and ships.  

Girls Night Out in Shelbyville Tuesday

Tuesday will be Girls Night out in Shelbyville, according to Tad Mayhall of the Shelbyville Chamber of Commerce:

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Call the Shelbyville Chamber of Commerce for details at 774-2221.

Area Arrests

Wednesday morning, Taylorville cops were called to the 400 block of S. Madison Street on reports of two women fighting. After a brief investigation, 33-year-old Tenika Hervey of Taylorville was arrested, then processed and released on a notice to appear.

 Taylorville police arrested two men Tuesday night just before 10:00 when they were dispatched to the 1100 block of E. Ash Street on reports of someone removing items from a building. 18-year-old Mackenzie J. Brion of Taylorville and 18-year-old James M. Johnson of Taylorville were both arrested on theft charges. They were processed and released on notices to appear.

Regan W. Anderson, 19, of TAylorville was arrested for criminal trespassing. 

Jesse W. Mollett, 23, of Kincaid was arrested for criminal trespassing. 

Tiffany J. Enlow, 19, of Kincaid was arrested for criminal trespassing. 

Michael A. Blake, 23, of Palmer was arrested for criminal trespassing. 

Debbie R. Horn, 42, was arrested for possession control. 


Shelbyville Rams

As heard on WRAN, in their first day in conference play, they defeated Sullivan with a score of 62-54.

Number Of Abortions In Illinois Drops

Fewer people are having abortions in Illinois.  The latest abortion rate numbers from 2010 show the abortion rate is at a 37-year low.  Carole Brite, with Planned Parenthood Illinois, says the drop seems to coincide with fewer babies being born. 

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Data released by the Illinois Department of Public Health shows only about 42-thousand abortions were recorded last year, which is the lowest number since abortions became legal in 1973.  Brite says more women are choosing to use contraceptions these days, which could also contribute to the decreased abortion rate.  

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Carole Brite, President and CEO of Planned Parenthood Illinois, says the introduction of more effective contraceptions may be behind the decrease.

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Carole Brite, President and CEO of Planned Parenthood Illinois, says the drop is a good sign. 

Earthquake Drill Coming Up

There's still time to sign up for the "Great Central U.S. Shakeout" coming up on February 7th.  Illinois Emergency Management Spokesperson Patti Thompson says it seems unlikely for an earthquake to hit Illinois but the state is not exempt. 

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Thompson says the vibrations from an earthquake in the Central U.S could be felt for thousands of miles.  Those who choose to participate in the shakedown event will receive information on how to take cover if an earthquake hits.  To register, check out Shakeout.org/CentralUS.

Nursing Homes To Take Financial Hit

Many of the state's nursing homes will lose money this year, thanks to a new law that forces them to pay a bed tax.  Kirk Riva, with the Life Services Network says his clients will lose millions in revenue.

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Riva says the six dollar and seven cent per bed tax is very significant, especially for small, non-profit nursing homes.  He says if the facilities don't raise rates they'll have to lay off staff and cut programs, which will impact the residents' quality of life.  Riva says 42-percent of the state's nursing homes will take a financial hit. 

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The nursing homes aren't allowed to pass the tax onto residents but Kirk Riva, with Life Services Network, says the residents will feel the pinch some way or another. 

Lawmakers Look To Reduce All-Time High Prison Population

More people are gettinglocked up in Illinois and now lawmakers must find a way to cut the costs,.  John Maki, with the John Howard Association, says the answer is to only imprison violent offenders and seek diversionary programs for others.

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The Inmate population is at an all-time high with corrections facilities at 144-percent over capacity.  Representative Art Turner has proposed a bill that would begin to address the issue.

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John Maki with the John Howard Association says reform has been a long time coming.

Drop In Higher Education Funding

Higher education spending is up by 12-percent in Illinois but Illinois State University's Jim Palmer says but that number can be deceiving.

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The number is based on a recent report conducted by the university.  It concludes higher education spending across the nation has dropped by about six-billion dollars over the past year.  Palmer says if lost stimulus dollars aren't taken into account, the overall decrease in funding is only four billion dollars. 

Kraft Can't Find Qualified Workers

Senator Dick Durbin says one Central Illinois food processing plant is having a hard time finding qualified workers.  

Car Rear Ended Tuesday

Taylorville Police were summoned to the scene of an accident Tuesday afternoon near the intersection of Springfield Rd. and Knute Rockne Drive. According to reports, 27-year-old Dyan L. Gouff of Springfield was stopped at the intersection when her vehicle was rear ended by 41-year-old Pamela S. Mathews of Taylorville. Mathews reportedly told police she couldn’t stop in time.

Fursteneau says Schools Have a Plan for Maintenance

The Taylorville School District has a plan for dealing with building maintenance.  Superintendent Dr. Greg Fursteneau says it’s not always easy, but they do their best to stick to the plan:

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Superintendent Fursteneau says the Science Wing building will be the last roofing project to be undertaken for a while.

Laurie Henry: Not Many Tax Changes This Year

Even though we’re still seeing cold weather, we know that April 15th isn’t that far away, and we begin to think about taxes.  Laurie Henry of H and R Block says for a variety of reasons, there aren’t too many changes in the tax code this year:

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Laurie Henry and her husband Steve own the H and R Block franchises in Taylorville, Pana, Shelbyville and Nokomis.

Mayor Says New Vehicles Necessary

At a Taylorville City Council meeting last week, aldermen approved the purchase of two new police cars and two new trucks for the city.  Taylorville Mayor Greg Brotherton says even when the budget is tight, certain expenditures have to be made:

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The city purchased the new vehicles from the Bob Ridings dealership in Taylorville.

Earn an Extra 100-dollars Per Acre

Here's a question for farmers....How would an extra 100-dollars per acre sound to you?  Jared White has more on how that can be a reality just by growing a common weed....

Area Arrests

Taylorville police snagged a local man wanted in a neighboring county. According to reports, Tuesday night just after 6:00 officers made contact with a subject who turned out to be wanted in Sangamon County. They arrested 23-tyear-old Colt A. Stephens of Morrisonville. He was taken to the Christian County Jail and held there in lieu of bond.

A call about a possible burglary ended in two arrests. Police were called to 105 W. Main in Taylorville Tuesday night just before 11:00. After a quick investigation, they arrested 19-year-old Jesi J. McCauley of Taylorville on charges of disorderly conduct and possession of drug paraphernalia. 19-year-old Kevin M. Hobbs of Morrisonville was charged with disorderly conduct.

Lindzi M. King, 22, of Moweaqua was arrested for possession of cannabis, possession of drug paraphernalia, possession control. 

David A. Kibler, 28, of Taylorville was arrested on an original arrest warrant for unspecified statute. 

Michael B. Weber, 24, of Edinburg was arrested on a bond forfeiture warrant for driving under the inflence of alcohol. 




The Taylorville Tornado wrestling team tallied 2 more victories to keep their momentum going. The Tornadoes recently clobbered Carlinville 76 to 4 and Decatur Eisenhower 72 to 7 and ran their record to a very impressive 15 wins against only 1 loss.

Local Girl Basketball Scores

As heard on WMKR, Central A&M fell to Sullivan with a score of 64-54.

As heard on WTIM, Taylorville fell to Jacksonville with a score of 53-50. 

New Program Coordinator for Faith in Action

 width=Faith in Action is announcing  the appointment of Barbara Sheets to the position of Faith in Action Program Coordinator.  She began working in the Faith in Action office on January 16, 2012.  Lori Holthaus has been the Faith in Action Program Coordinator for 13 years and recently retired from the position to devote her full time efforts to her position as Pana Community Hospital’s Social Services Manager.     

Barbara is currently the Associate Pastor at the Church of the Nazarene on 6th Street in Pana where her husband, Walter Sheets, is currently serving as Senior Pastor. 

The Program Director of Faith in Action is responsible for overseeing the program’s services, volunteer orientation and training, marketing of services to the community, and works directly with the Faith in Action Advisory Board. 

The Faith in Action office is located on the first floor of Pana Community Hospital and is open five days a week from 9:00-11:00 am. 

Services provided by Faith in Action include  transportation, weekly visits, errand running, light housekeeping and home repair and caregiver relief.  There is no charge for the services provided by Faith in Action caregivers. 



Conceal Carry Fight Continues

Gun advocates are hoping this is the year Illinois allows residents to carry guns legally.  Todd Vandermyde with the National Rifle Association says he's hoping several pending lawsuits change the minds of conceal carry opponents.

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The state Supreme Court heard oral arguments last week in the Wilson versus Cook County case.  Plaintiffs want the court to reverse the Cook County ban on semi-automatic rifles, shotguns, and handguns.  Vandermyde calls it too "broad-based" because it includes several rural hunting areas.  Illinois is the only state in the nation that doesn't allow some form of concealed carry.

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Todd Vandermyde, with the National Rifle Association, says there are several pending lawsuits that could fall in their favor.

Ron Kindred on Updating the Locks and Dams on the Mississippi River

Updating the locks and dams on the Mississpipi River has been a topic of discussion for several years now. No one knows this better than Ron Kindred - central Illinois farmer and a Board Member of the American Soybean Association.

In fact - ASA has been working very hard to get something done to improve the infrastructure of the river system because of the importance of moving soybeans - and other commodities - to the gulf for export.

Kindred says it's been a long and ongoing process to get funding authorized.

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Kindred says current lock system is well past it's lifespan, and failure to improve it ultimately comes back to the producers bottom line.

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And Kindred worries about the future of the U.S. economy as a whole should the lock system ultimately fail.

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Kindred says the most frustrating part is there is a trust fund that was set up to pay for all of the renovations, upgrades and dredging - and it was accompanied by legislation to protect the fund -  however only about half of that fund is being used for its intended purpose.

ASA Board Member Ron Kindred lives and farms near Atlanta, Illinois in Logan County.


Taylorville Park Distrcit Having Personnel Committee Meeting

The Taylorville Park District President and Board of Trustees will meet for a personnel committee meeting on Thursday, January 26 and Monday, January 30 at 6:00 p.m. at the Manners Park Administrative office board room.  The Taylorville Park District will hold a closed meeting under to consider the selection through interviews of applicants to fill a vacancy position with the park district.

Taylorville Public Library Will Hold a Public Forum

The Taylorville Public Library will hold a public forum Thursday night. According to a press release, the library is looking for input from the public as work continues toward the library’s Long Range Plan, which is required by the State.

There is a survey available at the library. The names of those who fill out and reutrne the survey will be included in a prize drawing. The Public Forum will be Thursday night at 7:00 at the Taylorville Public Library. Refreshments will be provided.

The Long Range Committee includes Board President Joe Meeks, along with Jill Pearce, Marie Bard, Judy Moulton, Mike Repscher, Ed Wunderlick and Dorothy Siles.

The new Long Range plan will take effect May 1st. Call the Library if you have questions at 824-4736.

Area Arrests

A Taylorville man was arrested Monday afternoon on charges related to an apparent sex offender violation. 20-year-old Wade Justin Dupoy of Taylorville was apparently wanted on a warrant out of Moutrie County. Dupoy was taken to the Christian County Jail and held there in lieu of bond.  

Jail Work Release Program

The Christian County Sheriff’s Office now has a work release program, according to Sheriff Bruce Kettelkamp:

 [audio:sheriffworkrelease012512.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Sheriff Kettelkamp says they’re able to offer the program partly because of his Staff:

 [audio:sheriffworkrelease2012512.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Sheriff Kettelkamp says the work release program also helps inmates develop a better work ethic.

More About the New Company in Town: Viddy's

A new company in Taylorville has pledge to do business locally. Viddy’s Cab and limo just recent opened. Chris Peters of Viddy’s says they make it priority to keep it local:

 [audio:viddys1012512.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Peters says there is a lot of information at their website:

 [audio:viddys2012512.mp3]comment here[/audio]

If you’re interested in a ride, call Viddy’s at 820-9121. Viddy’s is located at 1104 W. Spresser in Taylorville.  

Deer Harvest Down Slightly

It was a good year for deer hunters but Chris McCloud, with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources says it wasn't quite as good as last year. 

[audio:deerharvest012412.mp3]comment here[/audio]

The hunters harvested 181-thousand deer during the firearm, archery, and other seasons.  That's compared to 182-thousand last year.  McCloud says a team will analyze the results and determine if changes need to be made for the 2012-2013 hunting season. 

Parents Speak Out Against Facility Closure

Parents of the developmentally disabled are speaking out against Governor Quinn's plan to shut down the Jacksonville Developmental Center.  Rita Burke, with the Illinois League of Advocates for the Developmentally Disabled, says Quinn is pulling the life line on the state's most vulnerable people.

[audio:jdcclosure012412.mp3]comment here[/audio]

The Jacksonville Developmental Center isn't the only facility on the chopping block.  Quinn also plans to close three more facilities, including the Tinley Park Mental Health Center .  A total of 600 people will be moved into community care settings over the next two and a half years.  Quinn says the Jacksonville and Tinley Park closures will save just over 20-million dollars.  The move will put more than 550 people out of work.

2012 County Fair Queen Pageant

Some area County Fair Queens were recognized over the weekend.

The 2012 Miss Illinois County Fair Queen pageant took place in Springfield over the weekend.  Brittani Schisler, Miss Lake County Fair Queen, of Fox Lake was crowned by the retiring 2011 Queen Jackie Driscoll.  Schisler as the new Miss Illinois County Fair Queen will be the official hostess at both the Illinois State Fair and DuQuoin.  She was presented with a $1,000 scholarship from Prairie Farms.                

Miss Montgomery County Fair Queen Lauren Murphy of Harvel was named first runner-up.
The judges selected Miss Effingham County Fair Melissa Mellendorf of Montrose as second runner up.

70 queens from across the state took part in this year's event. 

Other area queens selected as top finalists were:  Miss Moultrie-Douglas Fair, Rachel Craddock; Miss Champaign County Fair, Korynn Kirby; Miss Sangamon County Fair,  Cara Workman; and Miss Edgar County Fair, Jessica Richardson.

The Miss Illinois County Fair Queen Pageant was held over the weekend as part of the annual convention of the Illinois Association of Agricultural Fairs at the Crowne Plaza in Springfield.

Miss Christian County, Bethany Brown, was not a finalist.

Local Area Car Accidents

43 year old Melissa M. Zini, of Taylorville, was traveling west on 1500 N. Rd. about 800 East.  A deer entered the roadway from the north.  Zini hit the deer, which ran off the south side of the roadway.  Zini came to the Christian County Sheriff's Department to report the crash. No injuries were reported. 

18 year old William A. Stryker, of Moweaqua, was traveling south on U.S. 51 approaching 400 North Rd.  Stryker reportedly lost control of his 2002 Chevrolet Blazer due to ice on the roadway and slid into the west ditch, and came to rest on the driver side.  No injuries were reported. 

On Saturday, Deputy McWard was dispatched to Co. Rd. #1 at 192 North for a single vehicle in the ditch.  When he arrived on the scene, he found the 2009 Ford in the ditch with the owner, Brett Walker present.  Walker stated he hit ice and lost control.  The vehicle was towed.  No injuries were reported. 

A two-vehicle accident Saturday afternoon is being blamed on failure to stop at a stop sign. According to Taylorvile police reports 35-year-old Walter H. Cunnington of Taylorville was headed west on East Park Street. Meanwhile, 45-year-old Mara L. Bertinetti of Taylorville was heading north on Shawnee Street. Bertinetti allegedly failed to stop, striking Cunnington’s vehicle on the front driver’s side. Bertinetti said she didn’t see the other vehicle. No injuries were reported.

Taylorville Public Library Working on Next Long Range Plan

Members of the Taylorville Public Library’s Long Range Planning Committee announced their efforts to update the plan to take effect May 1, 2012. A current long range plan is required by the Illinois State Library to fulfill the minimum standards for public libraries.

Public libraries are constantly trying to keep pace with changing technology consumer habits. Amidst these challenges, the constant will be that the Taylorville Public Library will go on serving as a valuable asset to the community by providing open access to information and ideas.

Public input is vital to a successful planning process. Community members are encouraged to complete a library survey available for an entry into a prize drawing. Prizes will be drawn at an informal brainstorming session to be hosted by the committee on Thursday, January 26 at 7:00pm with refreshments provided. For more information call 824-4736 or visit www.taylorville.lib.il.us

Area Arrests

The Christian County Sheriff's Department recorded the following arrests:

Randy E. Prince, 59, of Taylorville was arrested for possession of drug paraphernalia. 

Matthew T. Norris, 25, of Edinburg was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol. 

Joseph P. Kerr, 26, of Tower Hill was arrested on an original arrest warrant for knowingly damaging property. 

Aaron M. Steele, 22, of Riverton was arrested on an original arrest warrant for manufacturing, delivering cannabis. 

Daniel S. Brest, 25, of Kincaid was arrested for domestic battery. 

Levi J. Ginger, 25, of Tower Hill was arrested on a bond forfeiture warrant for burglary. 


Pana Landlord Reports Damage

A Pana landlord is reported damage to rental property. According to Pana Police reports, Mathew D. Swisher told officers about damage to garage door at 215 N. John Street in Pana. The case is under investigation.  

Goss's Wilt Affected Illinois Corn More Than Ever

In the 2011 season, Goss’s wilt affected more corn acres in Illinois than ever observed before.  Jared White has more...

[audio:123122011TheYearOfGosssWiltWRAP.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Goss's Wilt Affected Illinois Corn More Than Ever

In the 2011 season, Goss’s wilt affected more corn acres in Illinois than ever observed before.  Jared White has more...

[audio:123122011TheYearOfGosssWiltWRAP.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Mayor Says AFSCME Cooperative with City

Taylorville City Employees will be seeing a modest raise on their paychecks this year. Taylorville Mayor Greg Brotherton says a recent round of negotiations was a success:

 [audio:mayorafscme012412.mp3]comment here[/audio]

The Mayor says there is still no agreement with the police union:

 [audio:mayorafscme20122412.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Mayor Brotherton, a form city police officer and onetime Chief, says negotiations with the police union continue.

Barbecue, Blues and Cruise in Planning Stage

Taylorville Main Street is planning for this summer’s Barbecue Blues and Cruise event. President of Taylorville Main Street, Steve Craggs, says there will be some differences in the cooking competition this year:

 [audio:craggsonbbq1012412.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Craggs says they’re not ready to reveal too much information about this year’s musical lineup:

 [audio:craggsonbbq2012412.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Taylorville Main Street’s Barbecue Blues and Cruise will take place this summer at the Christian County Fairgrounds.  

Pork Prices Good for Consumers

The fact that the price is down on pork is a good news/bad news situation. It’s bad for pork producers who see less money in their pockets, but it’s good for consumers who are seeing substation savings, according to Anne Lupton:

 [audio:luptonsaysporkischeap012412.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Anne Lipton is an Ag Educator for the University of Illinois Extension.

Shelbyville Basketball

As heard on WRAN, Shelbyville defeated Sullivan with a score of 48-43.

State Launches Contest To Stop Cyber Bullying

Kids navigate the cyber world better than most adults and baby boomers and now the state wants to hear their ideas on how to stop cyber bullying.  State Board of Education spokesperson Mary Fergus says the kids' input may be the best way to stop online bullying. 

[audio:onlinebullying1012312.mp3]comment here[/audio]

The state is launching a new contest to give students an outlet to submit their ideas.  They can enter posters, videos, slideshows, or even podcasts describing ways bystanders can intervene in bullying.  For more details, check out Isbe.net.  

[audio:onlinebullying2012312.mp3]comment here[/audio]

The state is soliciting ideas from school kids on how to stop online bullying.  State Board of Education spokesperson Mary Fergus says the kids can offer a perspective that adults aren't privy to. 

Tougher Penalties For Handicapped Parking Abuse

People who use someone else's placard to park in a handicapped space could face stiff penalties.  Secretary of State Jesse White says it could mean a suspension of your license.  

Simon: Community Colleges Must Work Together

A new report indicates Illinois community college students aren't being adequately prepared for graduation but Lieutenant Governor Sheila Simon says there's hope for improvement.

[audio:simoncommcollege012312.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Simon says she'd like to see the community colleges create a stronger method of communication so they can draw off each other's strengths.   She says if the colleges worked together it could improve student success rates.  Right now, only about one out of five community college students graduate with a degree in three years or less.  Simon says that's unacceptable. 

Attorney Hired After Nursing Home Death

The family of an elderly man found dead in a creek wants answers.  They've hired an attorney to find out what happened to 77-year old Aubrey Giles who disappeared from a Belleville nursing home before he was found a few days later.  They're attorney, Staci Yandle, says she's serving as an advisor until the families decides if they want to pursue a civil lawsuit.

[audio:elderlydeath1012312.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Giles suffered from dementia and heart disease.  He had lived at Midwest Rehabilitation and Respiratory Care for seven years.  The nursing home was recently bought by Midwest Rehab, but only a few years ago had one of the worst records for state violations.  

[audio:elderlydeath2012312.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Staci Yandle, attorney for the Giles family, says the family hasn't decided whether they're going  pursue any legal action.

WTIM Celebrated its 60th Anniversary

WTIM celebrated its 60th anniversary Friday.  The station came on the air as WTIM 1410 AM on January 20th 1952.  On Friday’s WTIM Open Line Randy Miller, longtime owner of the station, sat in and took calls and comments from listeners.  One of the callers was Senior Citizens Advocate Mac McGwire:

[audio:anniversary1012312.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Another comment came in from Taylorville City Aldertman Earl Walters:

[audio:anniversary2012312.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Miller bought the stand alone station in 1992, and has since added several other stations, including the new Groovy 93.5 just recently.

Some Don't Wear Seat Belts: Sheriff

Most people know that it’s against the law not to wear a seat belt, and statistics show that more drivers than ever are wearing them, but Christian County Sheriff Bruce Kettelkamp says some people just haven’t get the message yet:

 [audio:sheriffseatbelt012312.mp3]comment here[/audio]

The Sheriff says at a recent school assembly on driving safety in Edinburg, those in attendance were impressed by some of the material presented:

 [audio:sheriffseatbelt2012312.mp3]comment here[/audio]

As of January 1st, back seat passengers are also now required to be buckled up.

Zumba the Lastest Exercise Craze

It’s harder to stay in shape during the winter months, but the Wellness Center at Pana Community Hospital might be able to help. Nancy Alexander, the Coordinator for the Wellness Center, says many people are getting involved in Zumba:

 [audio:pchzumba012312.mp3]comment here[/audio]

The Wellness Center offers a variety of exercise and nutrition programs.

Holzinger: Webinars Coming Up

Technology has spawned another new term: webinar, Andrew Holzinger of the University of Illinois Extension explains:  

 [audio:holzingerwebinar012312.mp3]comment here[/audio]

For details, call the local Extension Office at 287-7246.

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Hold Eagle Day at Lake Shelbyville

Over the last few years, Bald Eagle sightings have been on the rise at Lake Shelbyville, along with an increase in public interest.  The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is holding Eagle Day at the Lake Shelbyville Visitor Center on Saturday, February 18, 2012 from Noon until 4:00 p.m.


The Illinois Raptor Center will be presenting a Birds of Prey program that will feature a live Bald Eagle and a Golden Eagle along with other birds of prey at 2:00 p.m.  This is an excellent program and you will be able to see the eagles and other birds up close, so be sure to arrive early to get the best seats available. 


From Noon to 4:00 p.m. park rangers will have spotting scopes and binoculars available so you can view the birds that should be active on Lake Shelbyville, including Bald Eagles and waterfowl that are migrating through the area.  There will also be crafts and activities for children of all ages to enjoy.


 For more information on this event contact the Lake Shelbyville Interpretive Services and Outreach Department by email lakeshelbyville@usace.army.mil or by calling 217-774-3951 Ext. 2.     

Shelby County Health Deparment Sponsors Immunization Clinic

The Shelby County Health Department has an immunization clinic at Shelby County Health Department Wednesday, February 1st, from 8:30AM-11:30AM. The clinic is open to all children ages 2 months to 18 years. Vaccines offered are Polio, Hepatitis B, Menactra (Meningitis vaccine), DTaP, TD, Tdap, Varicella (chickenpox), MMR, Prevnar (pneumonia), Pediarix (DTaP-HEPB-IPV Combo), Rotarix, Pentacel, Hepatitis A, and Gardasil (Human Papillomavirus vaccine). Boosters of MMR, DTaP, and Polio are required after four years of age or prior to kindergarten entrance. The administration fee is $10.00 for each immunization. Make all checks payable to the Shelby County Health Department or IPA Medicaid Card is accepted. No one is denied if unable to pay.

If you are bringing children that attend school outside of Shelby County or are new to the school system in Shelby County, you must bring their past immunization records for the nurse to evaluate. Pre-registration before the day of the clinic is necessary to assure appointment time and vaccine availability. Clinic size is limited. All consents must be signed by parent or legal guardian and are valid for 30 days. If you have any questions concerning your child and immunization requirements, call the Shelby County Health Department at 774-9555.

Lawmaker Wants To Ground State Planes

One lawmaker says Governor Quinn should give up his airplanes and hop aboard an Amtrak train.  Decatur Representative Bill Mitchell says it may put more restraints on the governor's time but that's nothing in comparison to what the state owes its vendors. 

Taylorville Park Board OK's Random Drug Tests for Employees at Monthly Board Meeting; Hears Christmas In the Park Report


The Taylorville Park Board met for their regular monthly meeting on Monday night at the Park Board office. Park Board attorney Bob Broverman asked board members to amend the personnel manual, to allow the Park District to perform at-random drug tests at anytime for employees. The board OK’d the new policy.

Taylorville Park District park and finance director Kelly Bland reported that last month’s Christmas in the Park only showed a net loss after expenses of just under 16-hundred dollars.

[audio:BlandaudioJan2312.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Park Board members were pleased that the event almost broke even and attracted hundreds of people to Manners Park and the community.

Quotes for repairing the golf course event tent’s walls, were tabled for more discussion.

And, after their 30-minute regular session, the Taylorville Park Board went into executive session to review park superintendent applications.

Police Release Name of Accident Victim

The Illinois State Police have released the name of a Morrisonville man killed in an accident Thursday afternoon on Route 29 near the Taylorville Prison. 36-year-old Reynaldo “Rey” Tapia III was killed when he struck a semi-truck head on. Tapia was reportedly pronounced dead at the scene. The driver of the semi, 56-year-old E. Michael Johnson of Lincoln, was treated at Taylorville Memorial Hospital for minor injuries. Route 29 was closed near the prison for close to six hours as police reconstructed the accident.

Taylorville Boys Basketball

As heard on WTIM, the Taylorville boys fell to Glenwood with a score of 59-34.


The red hot Taylorville Tornado wrestling team continued their winning ways on Thursday as they rolled over CS8 opponent Southeast High School. By the time the dust settled in the dual meet, the Tornados walked away with a 52 to 16 victory. The latest win moved their record to an amazing 13 and 1 on the season. Winners for the Tornado Wrestling team were:


Caleb Dean at 106 lbs – winner by fall 1:51

Nick Flannell at 113 lbs – winner by fall 1:21

Kidd Morrison at 120 lbs – winner by decision 6-4 (ot)

Jake Smothers at 126 lbs – winner by fall 1:03

Hugh Mahr at 132 lbs – winner by fall 4:37

Jake Hamell at 138 lbs – winner by decision 4-2

Aaron Herkert at 152 lbs – winner by major decision 14-2

Brock Letcher at 170 lbs – winner by fall 3:18

Dalton Stokes at 182 lbs – winner by decision 5-0

Heath Garner at 195 lbs – winner by decision 7-1

Kyle Tex at 220 lbs – winner by fall 1:06

Claiming "False Promises," Illinois Sues Westwood College

Illinois is suing a national for profit college, claiming it lied to students over its criminal justice program. 

[audio:collegescam1012012.mp3]comment here[/audio]

State Attorney General Lisa Madigan says Westwood College should have told students their program wasn't accepted by most law enforcement agencies.  She also says Westwood's 70-thousand-dollar price tag for classes is much higher than private colleges and community colleges.  A Westwood spokesperson says there are plenty of graduates working in the justice field in Illinois.  The spokesperson also says  they're cooperating with Madigan on any issues.  Westwood has campuses in Illinois, Texas, Colorado, California and Georgia.  It also has an online program.

[audio:collegescam2012012.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan says Illinois State and Chicago police only hire people with degrees from regionally accredited colleges.

[audio:collegescam3012012.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Madigan says Westwood did all it could to keep students from leaving the college.

Bed Tax Will Hurt Small Nursing Homes

A statewide "bed tax" on nursing homes could have a negative impact on some facilities.  Pat Comstock, with the Healthcare Council of Illinois, says federal rules could mean a loss in revenue for some nursing homes.

 [audio:bedtax012012.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Nursing homes with a higher concentration of Medicaid patients, however, will be rewarded if the "bed tax" takes effect.  The tax will impose a six-dollar and seven-cent tax per bed, per day on long-term facilities.  It's currently under federal review and is expected to be instated soon.

Beverage Association Opposes O'Fallon Policy

The Illinois Beverage Association is striking back after O'Fallon city officials proposed a policy encouraging park-goers not to drink energy drinks. Tim Bramlet, with  the IBA, says energy drinks should not be treated like a controlled substance.

[audio:energydrinks012012.mp3]comment here[/audio]

The policy suggests those participating in and attending sporting events refrain from high caffeine usage.  It also urges them to stop using tobacco, alcohol, performance enhancers and other drugs.  Bramlet says energy drinks are safe and should not be lumped together with dangerous substances.

[audio:energydrinks2012012.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Tim Bramlet, with the IBA. says energy drinks are lower in caffeine than other common drinks.

Topinka: We Can Climb Out Of Debt

It'll be a long, tough challenge but Illinois Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka says the state can pull its way out of debt. 

[audio:topinkadebt012012.mp3]comment here[/audio]

The state still has about eight and a half million dollars in debt. Topinka says lawmakers must stay focused and say "No" to any new programs.  Democratic leaders are talking about borrowing again but Topinka says that will just put the state in a deeper hole.  And that means taxpayers will be ultimately be hit with the bill. 

Area Arrests

Wednesday night a Taylorville Police Officer who was questioning a man about a hit and run incident at the Cork and Keg Tavern in Taylorville suddenly saw the suspect approaching. According to reports, the suspect ran when he saw the officer. After a short chase, 26-year-old Christopher George Coy of Lincoln was taken into custody. He was processed and lodged in the Christian County Jail.

Late last Saturday evening, Taylorville Police were dispatched to Sonny’s Place on reports of theft. After a quick investigation, police arrested 34-year-old Christopher Silva of Decatur for allegedly stealing a purse.

Early Thursday morning, police were summoned to an address in the 700 block of N. Chestnut on reports of domestic violence possibly involving a knife. Officers found a woman with a cut on her forehead and a man locked in a bedroom. According to reports, the man refuse to show his hands to police as he was coming out of the bedroom, so a taser was used to subdue him. 44-year-old Ryan A. Kauzlarich was arrested on charges of domestic battery, and was taken to the Christian County Jail.

Tracy R. Hager, 41, of Herrick was arrested on a bond forfeiture warrant for unspecified statute. 

Emmanuel M. Dunklin, 27, of Decatur was arrested on an original arrest warrant for residential burglary. 


A male juvenile was ticket after an incident Wednesday. According to reports, a citizen called police to complain of a pickup track passing a stopped school bus. After getting a description of the vehicle, cops tracked down the 17-yer-old drive. He was cited for passing a school bus.

Fender Bender in Pana

A parking lot was the scene of an accident in Pana Wednesday. According to reports, 89-year-old John F. Broux of Pana took a turn too sharply, striking a parked vehicle driven by 26-year-old Justin A. Dudra of Oconee. Both vehicles sustained damage.

Mobile Food Pantry in Taylorville Next Week

The Christian County Mobile Food Pantry will be in Taylorville next week. Families and individuals in need of assistance should bring bags, baskets or boxes to the Taylorville Fire Station Thursday January 26th at 5pm. The good are distributed on a first come first served basis. Snow date for the event is Thursday February 2nd.

IDOT Schedules Public Hearing for Improvement of IL 29

The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) will hold an open house public hearing for the following two projects on protected corridors: proposed upgrade of IL 29, from a two-lane to a four-lane facility, spanning from just south of Berry to just over a mile south of Edinburg; and for the proposed upgrade of US 51, from a two-lane to four-lane expressway, ranging from a mile and a half south of Assumption to just south of Shelby County Line.  The meeting will be held from 4 to 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2012 at Calvary Baptist Church located ethane Avenue in Taylorville.  This hearing will be conducted on an informal basis therefore no formal presentation is planned. Representatives of the Illinois Department of Transportation will be available to answer individual questions and receive comment.

Dark Horse Riding Center Opens

A new business has opened near Edinburg. Dark Horse Riding center opened last month, and Andrea Ebert says they have a lot to offer:

 [audio:darkhorse012012.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Dark Horse Riding Center is located about a half mile South of Edinburg just off Rte. 29.

Sheriff Talks About Edinburg Visit

Lessons about driving safety start early, and school kids are constantly reminded to wear their seatbelts and to promote safe driving. Christian County Sheriff Bruce Kettelkamp says he was recently in the Village of Edinburg to speak with students:

 [audio:sheriffvisitsedinburg012012.mp3]comment here[/audio]

The Sheriff reminded the students that even back seat passengers are now required to wear a seat belt.

Main Street Plans for Spring Events

Springtime will be here before you know it, and many outdoor activities will take place. A lot of planning is underway for many upcoming events. Steve Craggs, President of the Taylorville Main Street organization, says they are working now on the Farmer’s Market which coincides with some Easter events:

 [audio:craggseasterevents012012.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Becky Edwards is the Executive Director of Taylorville Main Street.  


The Taylorville Tornado wrestling team improved to 12 and 1 on the season with a resounding defeat of Mt. Olive on Wednesday. The Tornadoes defeated the Wildcats by a final score of 78 to 6. Winners for Taylorville were:


The Taylorville Tornado wrestling team improved to 12 and 1 on the season with a resounding defeat of Mt. Olive on Wednesday. The Tornadoes defeated the Wildcats by a final score of 78 to 6. Winners for Taylorville were:

It?s Not Too Late! Apply Now for GTCC College Scholarships

Three local colleges have graciously agreed to fund scholarships through the Greater Taylorville Chamber of Commerce for high school seniors who have maintained a “C” average and meet the entrance requirements for the college to which they are applying. 

   The colleges and the awards they are offering are as follows:

  • Lincoln Land Community College—Tuition and fees for two semesters
  • Richland Community College—Tuition for two semesters
  • University of Illinois at Springfield—Tuition for two semesters

    Applicants may apply for only one award and those who reach the final phase of selection will be interviewed by a panel of judges. In addition to school involvement, the Education Committee will consider the work and home responsibilities being undertaken by all applicants as they review the application forms and interview the candidates.

    Applications are due no later than 4:00 p.m. on Friday, February 10, 2012 at the Greater Taylorville Chamber of Commerce office, located at 108 West Market St. in Taylorville.

    Copies of the one-page application form are available from all Christian County high school guidance counselors, the Greater Taylorville Chamber of Commerce office, or on line at www.taylorvillechamber.com.

     For more information on these scholarships or the GTCC Education Committee, please contact Linda Smith at 217-820-0215.

Wind Farm Plans Must Include Decommissioning

Wind farms are popping up all across the state.  David Loomis with the Center for Renewable Energy at Illinois State University says local governments must also have a long term plan for the turbines once they've become obsolete.


Loomis says most counties have a financing plan with either a letter of credit or an escrow account.  He says decommissioning, siting, and taxing issues will be addressed at a Wind Farms Conference at the Marriott Hotel and Conference Center in Normal on February 8th.  The target audience for the conference is county boards.

Pana Community Hospital Offers Weight Loss Programs

This time of year a lot of people are still thinking about weight loss. Pana Community Hospital’s Wellness Center has held weight loss events now for several years, and Nancy Alexander of PCH says there are a few changes this year:

 [audio:alexanderpch011912.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Call Pana Community Hospital at 562-2131 if you have questions.  

Roadshow in Shelbyville This Week

If you have old jewelry or coins lying around, you may be able to cash in on them. The Ohio Valley Gold and Silver Refinery is holding a roadshow in Shelbyville this week. Patty Jayne says they are at the Shelbyville Lion’s club through Saturday:

 [audio:pattyroadshow011912.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Hours will be from 9am to 6pm through Friday, and 9am to 4pm Saturday, at the Shelbyville Lion’s Club.

Sheriff Puts Inmates to Work

We’ve been reporting on how various government agencies are cutting costs. The Christian County Sheriff’s Department is doing its part. Sheriff Bruce Kettelkamp says at the jail, they’re putting the inmates to work:

 [audio:sheriffputsprisonertowork011812.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Sheriff Kettelkamp says the program is saving the County money.  

Area Arrests

The Christian County Sheriff's Department Department recorded the following arrests:

Jeffery W. Oller, 28, of Taylorville was arrested for domestic battery. 

Dorothy M. Harter, 29, of Illinois was arrested for operating an uninsured vehicle. 

Jacob A. Miller, 30, of Taylorville was arrested on a bond forfeiture warrant for deceptive practice. 

Alicia B. Bess, 26, of Morrisonville was arrested on a bond forfeiture warrant for battery. 

Nicole R. Hunt, 22 of Taylorville was arrested for domestic battery. 

Jody L. Carroll, 36, of Taylorville was arrested for obstructing justice. 

James R. Evrley, 30, of Taylorville was arrested for driving on a suspended and revoked license and obstructing justice. 

Zachary D. Jones, 20, of Taylorville was arrested on a bond forfeiture warrant for unspecified statute. 

Joseph A. Leckner, 20, of Taylorville wa arrested on a bond forfeiture warrant for knowingly damaging property. 

Lacey C. Swinburn, 30, of Taylorville was arrested on a bond forefeiture warrant for driving on a revoked license. 

Jennifer L. Ivy, 32, of Pana was arrested on a bond forfeiture warrant for deceptive practice. 

Jacob C. Noren, 20, of Taylorville was arrested for consumption of liquor. 

Charlene L. Ray, 59. of Taylorville was arrested for possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of cannabis, and possession of methamphetamine. 

Trevor Marquis, 20, of Assumption was arrested for consumption of liquor. 

Accident on Slippery Road

Accident reports continue to trickle in after icy weather last week. Just before 7:00pm last Thursday, a vehicle driven by 19-year-old Cody E. Efferson of Blue Mound reportedly slid into a car driven by 45-year-old Tamara S. Greenlee of Taylorville. The accident occurred at the intersection of Springfield Road and Cheney Street. Efferson blamed the icy roadway for the accident. No injuries were reported, and all three cars were driven from the scene.  

Quinn Urges Families To Apply For EITC

Governor Quinn says he's following the lead of Amos in the Holy Bible and taking care of those who are less fortunate. 

[audio:quinnreligiouszealot011812.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Quinn spoke at the Apostolic Church of God in Chicago on Sunday, urging families to apply for the earned income tax credit.  He signed a new law that will increase the credit next year.  It will put an average of 100 dollars back into the pockets of working people.  Quinn says that extra money will help people pay their bills and put food on their tables.   

Educational Luncheon on Nutritional Supplements at PCH-January 23

 width=Pana Community Hospital is hosting an educational luncheon Monday, January 23rd at 11:30 am in the Community Meeting Room on the lower level of the hospital. 

The featured speaker is Dr. Abbie Ballard, D.C. of Beyers Chiropractic.  The topic for the luncheon is “Vitamin/Mineral Supplements.”  Dr. Ballard will speak on how supplements can help maintain good health, how to pick quality supplements and how supplements can help certain conditions such as diabetes or high cholesterol.  Dr. Ballard will follow up the presentation with a chance for the audience to answer questions.

Nancy Alexander, Health/Wellness Coordinator at the Pana Community Hospital will also be available to answer questions about how the Rehab/Wellness Center can offer opportunities to create a healthy lifestyle in 2012. 

Pana Community Hospital hosts monthly educational luncheons titled “Better Breathers”.  The meetings are open to the public and meets on the last Monday of the month. 

The luncheon is free and provided by LINCARE and Quad County Home Health.  Reservations are not required. 

Anyone needing more information on the Better Breathers luncheon can call Pana Community Hospital at 562-2131.   

Workers Get Second Chance In Illinois

More than 27-thousand ex-felons, veterans, and people on welfare were given a second chance at finding work in Illinois last year.  Greg Rivara, with the state's Department of Employment Security, says it was a win-win situation for both the workers and the employers.

 [audio:2ndchancejobs011812.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Employers that hired the individuals under the Work Opportunity Tax Credit are now eligible to claim their share of 67-million dollars.  Tax incentives range from 24-hundred dollars in one year to 96-hundred dollars over two years, depending on the new hire.

Illinois State Police Make Bust After Pulling Over Vehicle

 width=On January 6 an Illinois State Police (ISP) District 9 Trooper stopped a 2011 Kia Sorrento for speeding.   During the routine traffic stop, the Trooper identified a subject wanted on three warrants and uncovered a fraudulent check scam operation.  After stopping the vehicle on Interstate 55 in Logan County, a check on the passenger (Alex M. Ferguson) revealed he was wanted on no bond felony warrants for forgery in Lake, Macon, and Sangamon Counties.

During a search of the passenger compartment of the vehicle, a laptop computer, printer, numerous blank checks, and several pre-written checks for various recipients and dollar amounts were found.  The checks contained a fictitious company name of "Charles Sykes Service."

ISP Zone 4 Investigations and the United States Secret Service were contacted to assist in the investigation.  In addition, the Jacksonville Police Department was contacted because several fraudulent checks may have been distributed in the Jacksonville area.

As the investigation continues, the ISP and Secret Service are working diligently with local and county authorities to determine if other fraudulent checks have been circulated in their area. Additional charges are pending.  

Podeschi Says: Don't Worry About Trees and Daffodils

So far, this winter has been a mild one, with little snow and fairly warm temperatures. The question is: will the up and down temps cause trouble for your trees and flowers? Master gardener Gwen Podeschi says probably not:

 [audio:podeschitreesandflowers011812.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Podeschi says most plants are accustomed to the climate in Central Illinois.

Lupton: Pork can be Surprising

Many Americans are unsure about where their food comes from. Educating people about that is Anne Lupton’s Job. She is an Ag Literacy Coordinator for the University of Illinois Extension. Lupton says it’s surprising how little people know about pork, one of the Central Illinois’ leading ag products:

 [audio:luptontalkspork011812.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Lupton says she will spend a good portion of January talking about pork.

Slippery Road Blamed for Accident

An accident just after 9:00 Saturday morning caused damage to two vehicles. According to reports, 33-year-old Jennifer L. Puffenberger of Taylorville began to slide on wet streets when she tried to slow down behind a vehicle driven by 30-year-old Timothy E. Mays of Taylorville. She struck the rear of Mays’ vehicle, causing damage to both cars. The accident happened on R. 29 near Trinity Dodge Puffenberger was cited for failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident.

Area Arrests

Friday the 13th was an unlucky day for a Taylorville couple. Taylorville officers were sent to an apartment at 714 E. Park Street on reports of a disturbance. After a short investigation, police arrested 28-year-old Jeffrey W. Oller of Taylorville and 22-year-old Nicole R. Hunt of Taylorville, both on charges of domestic battery. They were both taken to the Christian County Jail.

Taylorville cops arrested an adult and two juveniles early Friday morning on a variety of charges. According to reports, police were notified on some reckless driving going on in the 1500 block of W. Elm Street. The driver of the vehicle, 20-year-old Chester L. Conn of Taylorville, was arrested on reckless driving, driving while suspended, and illegal consumption of alcohol. Two of Conn’s juvenile passengers were also arrested for illegal consumption.

A male juvenile was arrested Friday night after police were dispatched to the alley just off the E. side of the Taylorville Square on reports of fighting. One of the juveniles was arrested on charges of battery. He was released into the custody of his mother.

Mac McGwire: Counterfeiters Shut Down

Online shoppers always have to be wary of the ripoff.  One popular online scam is selling counterfeit merchandise.  Senior Citizen’s Advocate Mac McGwire says this year, the authorities seemed to take the problem a little more seriously:

[audio:maccounerfeit011712.mp3]comment here[/audio]

McGwire says many of the offending websites were shut down by court order just before Cyber Monday.

Billboard Question Comes Before Council Committee

The question of billboards in the city will come before the Taylorville City Council tonight. The Ordinance Committee will meet at 6:00 tonight, followed by a full council meeting at 7:00. Taylorville Mayor Greg Brotherton says he thinks the Council will take a balanced approach to the matter. Bruce Jones is the chairman of the Ordinance Committee. The meetings are being held tonight instead of the usual Monday because of the Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday yesterday.

Fursteneau: 1st Half of the School Year

Taylorville Schools are now in the second half of this year’s term.  Taylorville Schools Superintendent Dr. Greg Fursteneau says the first half of the year went as well as can be expected:

Shelbyville Students of the Month

 width=Druby's Restaurant January Students of the Month are as follows: Senior: Ashley Donnel (Left), Junior:. Alex Matlock, Sophomore:  Kaitlyn Hopper, Freshman:  Ryan Stenger. Druby's owner Rob Bosgraf on right.


Pana High School Students of the Month

 width=Students of the Month for Pana High School are as follows: George Heinz from People's (Left), Erin Holthaus-Freshman, Alexus Anderson-Soph, Jessica Holthaus-Jr, Andrew Deere-Sr, and then Ashely Basso from People's (right).

Omnibus Vote at Taylorville City Council Meetings is Working

Taylorville alderman Earl Walters commented on the use by the City Council, of the omnibus vote on meeting minutes, committee reports, and bills, at the end of Tuesday night’s Council meeting. Walters said that he’s kept track of how many members of the public have attended city council meetings, both before the omnibus vote procedure, and after. Walters told Regional Radio News, that the same number of people have attended Taylorville City Council meetings both before all the minutes and bills were read, as there have been since the reading of minutes and bills have not taken place.

WALTERSCUT1JAN1712[audio:Walterscut1Jan1712.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Walters added that in his over 20 years of serving on the City Council, he’s found that it’s what he called “hot potato” issues, that usually bring out a crowd.

WALTERSCUT2JAN1712[audio:Walterscut2Jan1712.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Taylorville City Council and council committee meetings, are open to the public.


Taylorville Aldermen Act on Several Items in One Hour Meeting Tuesday Night

Taylorville aldermen acted on several items in their one hour meeting Tuesday night at city hall. They voted to annex property belonging to Cheryl Assad at 2020 South Spresser; they voted to ratify the contract with AFSCME Local 3349 calling for a one-percent wage increase and a 500-dollar signing bonus for 2012; they approved the Christian County Multi-Hazard Mitigation Plan as presented; approved the purchase of 2 new police cars, one will be marked and the other unmarked, both from Bob Ridings Ford at a total cost of just over 71-thousand dollars; and they approved granting a temporary easement along Lake Taylorville to Rich Payne as well as a tract swap, so that selected timber along the lake can be logged with the city receiving the proceeds of the timber sales totaling some 22-thousand dollars.

The Taylorville City Council met Tuesday night due to the Monday Martin Luther King holiday. Aldermen in their one hour meeting, passed a motion changing quiet time at the Lake Taylorville lake lots and campgrounds, to begin at eleven in the evening instead of midnight; they approved to begin the process of issuing bonds for the rehabilitation of the Cherokee Street water tower, with total bonds proposed being some one-million dollars; they voted to replace a variable frequency drive on the North High Service Pump at a cost of some 61-hundred dollars; and purchased 2 pickup trucks for the water department, both from Bob Ridings Ford, at a total cost of just over 51-thousand dollars.


Taylorville Council Talks Annexation, "Best City" Votes Tuesday Night

Taylorville aldermen Tuesday night heard a report from city attorney David Fines, on his ongoing efforts to convince businesses in the old Industrial Park on the city’s south side, to annex into the city. Fines said that of the 8 properties the city is trying to convince to annex in, 5 are owned by local businessman Bernie Curvey, and that discussions with Curvey have continued. Fines added he felt that if Curvey’s properties were to be annexed, others would follow. Fines added that both the city and Curvey have agreed to discuss the annexation issue rather than resort to litigation. Some council members opened questioned the benefits of annexing the former Taylorville Industrial Park properties, versus the possible cost for providing city services to some that don’t now have them.

Taylorville mayor Greg Brotherton reported at Tuesday night’s city council meeting, that the City of Taylorville is now in 21st place in the Reader’s Digest “Best City in America” voting on line, with over 175-thousand votes. The top 18 cities on the list at the conclusion of voting, will receive grants from the publication, and the mayor urged all local residents to go to the Reader’s Digest web site and vote as many times as you like. Voting will remain open for 3 weeks.

Taylorville City Council Ordinance Committee Again Tackles Billboard Issue, Tie Vote


(file photo)

The Taylorville City Council met in regular session Tuesday night at the Council Chambers, due to the Monday Martin Luther King holiday. The city council meeting was preceded by a meeting of the Council’s ordinance committee, and one of the items on the agenda was the continuing discussions about allowing additional billboards inside city limits.

A Springfield firm has an option on ground along Illinois Route 48 near the Christian County YMCA, and wants to erect 2 40-foot poles which will each hold 4 billboards. The issue went thru committee before, and after a tie vote, went to the full Council where it was extensively discussed and ultimately sent back to committee.

The committee vote after discussion last night, was again 2 to 2, and the committee is sending the issue back to the full Council to be discussed again at their next meeting.

Ordinance committee chairman Bruce Jones told Regional Radio News why the city council has to act on the request.

JONESCUT1JAN1712[audio:Jonescut1Jan1712.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Jones added that he wants to make sure that the City of Taylorville remains business friendly.

JONESCUT2JAN1712[audio:Jonescut2Jan1712.mp3]comment here[/audio]

So, after the tie vote in the ordinance committee Tuesday night, it appears as though the billboard issue will come before the full Taylorville City Council a 2nd time, at their February 6 meeting.

Christian County Board Approves Several Bids

Christian County Board met in regular session on Tuesday evening and heard committee reports on several items. The Highway, Building and Grounds committee brought several bids to the attention of the board including a bid for $13,200 for the purchase of treated timber bridge planks and $3950 for the purchase of a pipe hook from Kenco for lifting and placing pipe culverts. The board approved the purchase of these items.

The most time consuming discussion of the evening came as the board was discussing the salary increase for the County Board Administrative Coordinator. Jack Pearce Jr., made a motion to increase the pay of the position 5%. The motion was seconded and then the discussion began. There was a lot of confusion over whether the pay increase had already been voted on in previous board meetings. After much discussion, it was determined that the increase had actually been voted on in two previous meetings and that the votes were contradictory to each other. Chairman Schmitz then recommended that the motion on the floor be rescinded and that the members listen to the tapes of the previous meetings to determine exactly what the previous votes were and whether it would be necessary to rescind all votes on the matter and start all over again.

The board also heard a short overview from Jeremy Travelstead, broker from American Central Insurance. It was determined that the retired employees could receive better health coverage, better drug coverage and a lower costs by changing from Blue Cross to Health Alliance.

It was also approved by the board to allow States Attorney Finks to fill a vacancy for an assistant attorney and to allow County Clerk Linda Curtin to hire a temporary employee for six months to fill a vacancy in her department.

Help Emergency Crews this Winter Season

Emergency crews are keeping busy as snow covers the roads causing poor driving conditions.  Monique Bond with the Illinois State Police says you can help ease the burden if you have a small fender bender on the expressway that doesn't require emergency assistance.

[audio:bond1011612.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Drivers have seven days to file an accident report with the ISP. Bond, says drivers should stay focused on the roads.

[audio:bond2011612.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Bond says ramps, curves, and bridges are often more prone to develop black ice, which can be difficult to see.  She says drivers should also avoid abrupt braking and give yourself enough room to stop.  Bond reminds drivers to wear seat belts and look out for maintenance vehicles.

Republican Legislative Call for Repeal on Income Tax

It's been a year since Democrats raised income taxes in Illinois and according to John Tillman, with the Illinois Public Policy Institute, it's been a complete failure.

[audio:goptaxrepeal1011612.mp3]comment here[/audio]

GOP legislative leaders joined Tillman in calling for a repeal of the income tax hike.  They say the repeal will improve the business climate and put people back to work.  And, most importantly, they say it will put money back into the pockets of hardworking people.  Governor Quinn's office disagrees, saying a repeal will put firefighters, teachers, and other vital employees out of work.

[audio:goptaxrepeal2011612.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Republican leaders in Illinois say the tax hike has been a complete failure but Governor Quinn's office disagrees.  Quinn spokesperson Kelly Kraft says the additional revenue has helped fund important services in the state.

AIEC and RECC Representatvies Present Grant to LLCC

Representatives of the Association of Illinois Electric Cooperatives (AIEC) and the Rural Electric Convenience Cooperative (RECC) will present a $40,167 GeoAlliance grant to Lincoln Land Community College officials, to help fund the energy efficient, geothermal heating and cooling system used at the new LLCC-Taylorville Classroom Building. 

Experts will be on hand to explain the technology involved. Geothermal is the greenest system available for heating and cooling, and underscores LLCC’s commitment to green stewardship and reducing energy costs.

The College will be represented by LLCC Trustee and State Representative Wayne Rosenthal; LLCC Vice President for Administrative Services Rich Vertrees; Assistant Vice President for Facilities and Construction Hugh Garvey; John Shafer, architect for the building; and LLCC staff.  

Nancy Nixon, marketing administrator for the AIEC; Dana Smith, director of member and public relations at RECC; and Mel Repscher, RECC director, will present the grant. 

Refreshments will be served. 

Pana Community Hospital Presents Service Awards

Pana Community Hospital recently presented service awards to hospital employees in recognition of the employees’ years of service.  Two employees received 30 year service awards including Susan Beeson of the Nursing Department and Cheryl Gordon of the Cardiopulmonary Department. 

Other employees that received service awards were:

25 years:  Jean Waller-Housekeeping, Becky Cloe-Nursing, Faye Adams-Materials Management and Angela Lynch-Patient Financial Services

20 years:  Marla Myers-Community Medical Clinic, Julie McAdams-Nursing, and Tonya Martincic-Nursing

15 years:  Cindy Miles-Diagnostic Imaging, Barbie Wheeler-Nursing, Debra Jones-Nursing, Laura Hile-Nursing, Kim Collins-Patient Financial Services

10 years:  Trina Casner-Executive Office, Jeff Waddington-Environmental Services, Sue Kirk-Nursing, Tammy Foster-Nursing, Rick Smith-Environmental Services, Deborah Short-Rehab Services, Judy Marley-Quad County Home Health, Janell Foor-Pharmacy, and Annette Sarver-Community Medical Clinic 

5 years:  Julie Wafford-Rehab Services, Amanda Allen-Food Services, Stacy Vail-Rehab Services, Connie Shepherd-Nursing, Dr. Jared Kocher-Community Medical Clinic, Courtney Kocher-Rehab Services, Patra Deere-Rehab Services, and Tammy Inman-Patient Financial Services.

Illinois Given the Worst Credit Rating in the Nation

State Treasurer Dan Rutherford says Illinoisans could be the hook for tens of millions of dollars in interest payments, thanks to the state’s poor credit rating.

 [audio:rutherfordbondrating011612.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Moody’s investors gave the state the worst credit rating tin the nation, citing its failure to deal with unpaid bills and underfunded pension systems. Rutherford blames habitual borrowing for the poor rating. He says he want to work with lay makers to bring the state out of the red by he will not support any additional borrowing. He encourages lawmakers to find ways to cut spending.

Sheriff Gets Revenue for Coutny With Fingerprints

For years, the Christian County Sheriff’s Department did not charge other police agencies for fingerprinting services. This resulted in a high number of requests for the services, since other law enforcement agencies usually do charge. Christian County Sheriff Bruce Kettelkamp says they are now charging a modest fee, and it’s generating money for the county:

 [audio:sherifffingerprints011612.mp3]comment here[/audio]

The Sheriff says the fees generated more than $1800 for the county in 2011.

New CPA in Town

The New Year is bringing chrages to the Taylorville business community. CPA Greg Strter is the new kid in town:

Viddy's Cab and Limo Fees

If you’ve ever taken a cab in the big city, you know that a meter keeps track of the miles and charges you accordingly. Chris Peters, of Viddy’s Cab and Limo in Taylorville says they have a different fee system:

 [audio:viddysprices011612.mp3]comment here[/audio]

If you need a ride, call Viddy’s at 820-9121. They are located at 1104 W. Spresser in Taylorville.

TPD Releases 2011 Year End Report

Taylorville Police spent a lot of time dealing with traffic accidents last year. The Department’s year end reports shows Taylorville officers handled 461 traffic crashes in 2011. Theft was the next big category with theft with officers handling 200 of those cases. The report also lists 180 warrant arrests, 163 criminal damage to property cases, and 103 cases of driving while license suspended or revoked. Alcohol related calls added up to nearly 140 cases. There were 35 aggravated criminal sexual assault cases listed. Altogether the Taylorville Police Department responded to over 15,000 calls in 2011. The averages out to over 40 calls a day.

Slick Roads cause Two Road Accidents

Icy conditions last week contributed to an accident the intersection of Rt. 29 and Cheney Thursday. According to reports, 37-year-old Rebecca S. Roberts of Taylorville began to slide, eventually hitting a car driven by 41-year-old Jill Pearce of Taylorville, then bouncing off and striking a car driven by 49-year-old Linda E. Waddel of Taylorville. Roberts’ vehicle had to be towed from the scene. No injuries were reported.

Slick roads apparently led to a 2-car accident Thursday. 19-year-old Brandy Therese Gomez of Nokomis reported slid into the rear of a vehicle driven by 33-year-old Michelle E. Wicker of Edinburg. No injuries were reported.

Billboard Question Comes Before Council Committee

If you are concerned about the possibility of new billboards being placed in the Taylorville area, you can speak your piece at a meeting of the Taylorville City Council’s Ordinance Committee. They will discuss the matter tomorrow night at 6:00 at the Municipal Building in the Council Chambers. Bruce Jones is Chairman of the Ordinance Committee. The full Council will meet after the committee meeting starting at 7:00. The meetings are being held Tuesday night because of the Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday today.

Tornado Wrestling


The Taylorville Tornado Wrestling team placed 4th at the George Girardi U-High Invitational this past Saturday at Normal U-High. It is the highest finish ever for the Tornado Wrestling squad. 15 teams from all over central Illinois were represented including Peoria, Danville, Decatur, Rantoul, Normal and Taylorville. The Tornados finished 4th with 151 total points, behind Pontiac at 185.5, Peoria High at 165 and Peoria Notre Dame at 163.


Tornado wrestlers that placed are:

Caleb Dean – 5th place – 106 lbs.

Nick Flannell – 2nd place – 113 lbs.

Kidd Morrison – 6th place – 120 lbs.

Jake Smothers – 3rd place – 126 lbs.

Keane Rogers – 4th place – 138 lbs.

Nic Turner – 6th place – 160 lbs.

Brock Letcher – 5th place – 170 lbs.

Dalton Stokes – 3rd place – 182 lbs.

Heath Garner – 4th place – 195 lbs.

Kyle Tex – 3rd place – 220 lbs.

Blake Hooper – 4th place – Heavyweight


Sunday, the wrestling team and some of the dads attended the University of Iowa vs. Northwestern wrestling meet in Iowa City. Coach Mateer was extremely pleased with the trip. The day was hi-lighted when the entire team got to meet wrestling and coaching legend Dan Gable.

Taylorville Basketball

As heard on WTIM the Taylorville Tornadoes lost to Highland with a score of 52 to 50.

Illinois Gas Prices

Illinois, January 16- Average retail gasoline prices in Illinois have risen 2.6 cents per gallon in the past week, averaging $3.56/g yesterday. This compares with the national average that has increased 1.1 cents per gallon in the last week to $3.34/g, according to gasoline price website IllinoisGasPrices.com.

Including the change in gas prices in Illinois during the past week, prices yesterday were 36.3 cents per gallon higher than the same day one year ago and are 26.1 cents per gallon higher than a month ago. The national average has increased 10.3 cents per gallon during the last month and stands 27.2 cents per gallon higher than this day one year ago.

Sign up For Seminars to Learn About Tillage

Time is running out for farmers from across Illinois to sign up for a series of upcoming seminars to learn what's new in tillage.  Jared White has more...

GOP: Freeze Union Pay Raises

House Minority Leader Tom Cross says freezing pay raises for union state workers may be the only way to get control of the budget.

Local Vehicle Accidents

63 year old Rebecca L. Gathard of Edinburg, was traveling west exiting an alley onto Eaton Street, when he failed to yield right of way to 40 year old Kimberly Hart of Edinburg, who was exiting the alley.  Gathard hit the front driverside of Hart 2006 Chrysler Town & Country that was atraveling north on Eaton Street.  Minor injuries were reported. 

39 year old Darin R. Dennison, of Morrisonville, was southbound on 400 east red just south of 600 N. Rd. when a deer entered the roadway.  Dennison struck the deer with his 2002 Saturn SL2, and received front-end damage.  Minor injuries were reported.

29 yearl old Ryan P. Elsila, of Taylorville, was southbound on IL Rt. 29 just north of Sharpsburg, when two deer ran into her path.  Elisla struck both deer with his 2007 Toyota Camry.  He received front end damage.  No injuries were reported. 

44 year old Michaek T. Jacobs, of Kincaid, was traveling northound on hwy. Rt. 29 approximately tw miles south of Owaneco.  She lost control of her vehicle and slid into the ditch on the south side of the road.  Johson was takedn to Pana Community Hospital for minor injuries. 

22 year old Michelle N. Brown, of Taylorville was traveling east on the Langleyville Rd. when she sdrove into the south side ditch, then over corrected and over turned one time.  Her 2002 Pontiac Sunfire came to rest on the roadway.  No injuries were reported. 

Bulls Hold Off Celtics

Derrick Rose scored 25 points and had seven assists to lead the Chicago Bulls past the Boston Celtics, 88-79.  The Bulls held the lead wire-to-wire, leading by as much 20 at one point.  The Celtics cut that lead to one early in the fourth.  Luol Deng dropped 21 with 16 boards and Joakim Noah chipped in 10 points, 12 rebounds and four blocks.  It was Chicago's fourth straight win.  Rajon Rondo netted 14 points and 11 assists in a losing effort as the Celtics lost their third in-a-row.

Police Question Starlin Castro On Alleged Sex Assault

Chicago police are talking to Cubs shortstop Starlin Castro about a woman who claims he sexually assaulted her.  Sources tell the Chicago Sun-Times Castro voluntarily went to police headquarters yesterday morning to discuss the allegations.  A woman claims Castro sexually assaulted her inside his apartment last September.  He hasn't been charged with a crime.

Blackhawks' Carcillo Out For Season With Torn ACL

Chicago Blackhawks forward Dan Carcillo will undergo surgery to repair a torn anterior curciate ligament in his knee and miss the rest of the season.  He was injured in a 4-3 loss to the Edmonton Oilers on January 2nd when he sent Oilers defenseman Tom Gilbert face first into the end boards, sending both men to the ice in pain.  Carcillo needed help off the ice and received a five-minute boarding major, a game misconduct, and a seven-game suspension for his actions.  The 26-year-old had 11 points, 82 penalty minutes and a plus-10 rating in 28 games this season.

Noland Tapped For Pension Reform Group

Pension reform is one of the biggest issues facing lawmakers this year.  Senator Michael Noland is on a task force charged with finding a solution to the pension problems.  He says stakeholders will have to put politics aside and be prepared for compromise. 

[audio:pensiontaskforce011312.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Illinois' pension system is only about 45-percent funded, it's one of the worst in the nation.  Moody's investor's recently lowered the state's credit rating because of the looming pension crisis.  Noland says reform has become mandatory and failure is not an option.

HPV Vaccine Recommended For Boys

It's not uncommon for doctor's to recommend young girls get the HPV vaccination.  But Doctor Kenneth Soyemi with the Illinois Department of Public Health says both boys and girls should take steps to avoid getting the virus.

GOP: Repeal Tax Hike

GOP leaders in the state say the tax increase implemented last year is a failure and they want it repealed.  Senate Minority Leader Christine Radogno says it's taking hard-earned money out of people's pockets. 

 [audio:taxrepealtalk011213.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Radogno teamed with House Minority leader Tom Cross calling for the repeal.  They say the state is in worse shape now than it was before the tax hike, with higher unemployment and a bad business climate.  Governor Quinn's office says the additional revenue has helped fund vital services in the state like education and public safety. 

Girl Recovering After Pit Bull Attack

An eight-year-old girl remains hospitalized after being attacked by a pit bull.  Crawford County Sheriff Todd Liston says it happened Tuesday afternoon when Kelcee Lowrance was getting off the school bus.  He says the dog's owner, 36-year-old Clinton Woosley, saw the dog get loose and go after the girl.

 [audio:pitbullattack011213.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Woosley was able to get control of the dog the second time.  Lowrance was rushed to the hospital by her father, a deputy for the Sheriff's Office.  She was transported to Carle and has undergone surgery to reattach her ear and fix her damaged arm.  Woosley was arrested for reckless conduct.  The dog was destroyed and is now being tested for rabies.

Area Arrests

Pana Police report the arrest of two juveniles. A 14-year-old and a 17-year old were picked up Monday on drug, alcohol, and theft allegations. The information will be sent to the States Attorney’s office.

Pana Police have arrested a local man after an investigation into an apparently altered medical prescription. 46-year-old Michael E. Durbin of Pana was arrested on charges of forgery. He was given a notice to appear in court and released.

Joseph A. Leckner, 20, of Taylorville was arrested on a bond forfeiture warrant for driving with a suspended license. 

Jerome H. Mason, 27, of Taylorville was arrested on a bond forfeiture warrant for domestic battery. 


Kincaid Teacher Incident

There are still more questions than answers concerning a Kincaid Teacher. Unconfirmed allegations of drinking on the job are being leveled against the unnamed educator. The School is not commenting on the allegations. A Kincaid parent tells Regional Radio News that some students claimed the teacher was drinking vodka in class Tuesday morning. Kincaid police were apparently called to the scene by no arrests were made.

No action has been taken by the District, but they say they are aware of the accusations and say it will be dealt with by the School Board.

Schools Deal with Wintry Weather

Winter finally arrived yesterday, causing travel problems and delays. Schools are especially aware of bad weather for a variety of reasons. Taylorville Schools Superintendent Dr. Greg Fursteneau says the weather has been fairly kind to them up to this point:

 [audio:fursteneauwinter011312.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Dr. Fursteneau says heating is always one of the district’s bigger bills.  

Alvarado: Social Security Website Improvements

More and more business is being taken care of online, and Social Security has improved its websites to allow more people to use them. Nikki Alvarado of the Social Security Office in Springfield tells Regional Radio listeners there’s a lot you can do online these days:

 [audio:alvaradoonliness011213.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Call your local Social Security Office to find out more.

Sheriff Says: Slow Down in Winter Weather

The winter weather that arrived this week brought dozens of phone calls to local police agencies as drivers dealt with slippery roads and visibility problems. Christian County Sheriff Bruce Kettelkamp says the best way to navigate the ice roads is to slow down:

Sheriff Says: Slow Down in Winter Weather

The winter weather that arrived this week brought dozens of phone calls to local police agencies as drivers dealt with slippery roads and visibility problems. Christian County Sheriff Bruce Kettelkamp says the best way to navigate the ice roads is to slow down:

Local Basketball Scores

As heard on WTIM, Taylorville fell to Springfield Southeast with a score of 58-33.

As heard on WRAN, Shelbyville fell to Moroa-Forsyth with a score of 43-38.

Healthy Diet Improves ADHD

Researchers say a healthy diet can improve the symptoms of children diagnosed with ADHD.  Doctor J. Gordon Millichap, of Children's Memorial Hospital in Chicago, says it starts with taking a more holistic approach.

[audio:adhd1011212.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Studies have found fish oil supplements reduce symptoms. Other studies suggest those with ADHD should eat lots of vegetables and avoid fast food, red meats and high-fat dairy products.

 [audio:adhd2011212.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Doctor J. Gordon Millichap, of Children's Memorial Hospital in Chicago, says a good diet doesn't cure ADHD, but it helps.

Illinois Hospitals Increasingly Providing Charity Services

Illinois hospitals are giving out more charity and reduced price care in recent years. That's according to a recent survey by the Illinois Hospital Association.  Spokesperson Danny Chun says the findings correspond with the performance of the nation's economy.

[audio:hospitals1011212.mp3]comment here[/audio]

The report puts the amount of charity at 125 percent more than what is was five years ago.  Despite the increased giving, Chun says around one-third of hospitals are suffering some kind of financial insecurity.

[audio:hospitals2011212.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Spokesperson Danny Chun says continued Medicaid and Medicare funding is necessary for hospitals to provide the current level of care.

Debt Collectors Get Top Spot For Complaints

Debt collectors top the list when it comes to consumer complaints in Illinois.  Attorney General Lisa Madigan says debt collectors have limitations nad you should know your rights. 

[audio:madigandebtcollectors011212.mp3]comment here[/audio]

More than 11-hundred complaints were filed with the Attorney General's office in 2011.  Other top complaints include identity theft, problems with home improvement contractors, and problems with phone and cable companies.  

American Farm Bureau Have 93rd Annual Meeting in Honolulu

The president of the nation’s largest farm organization talked to members about the challenges farmers and ranchers will face in the year ahead. AFBF President Bob Stallman spoke at the opening session of the group’s annual meeting in Honolulu. Johnna Miller reports:

Area Arrests

Taylorville Police made an arrest early Tuesday morning. According to reports, they were dispatched to the 400 block of W. Spresser Street in reference to a possible intoxicated driver, possibly involving children. Police arrested 18-year-old Jeremy T. Emery on charges of aggravated DUI and driving on a suspended license. He was taken to the Christian County Jail and held in lieu of bond.

Velory R. French, 32, of Taylorville was arrested on a bond forfeiture warrant for driving on a revoked license. 

Brianne L. Hughes, 21, of Taylorville was arrested on an original arrest warrant for theft. 

Daniel S. Brest, 36, of Kincaid was arrested for domestic battery. 

Sean D. Baker, 20, of Taylorville was arrested on a bond forfeiture warrant for consumption of liquor. 

Skyler J. Gist, 21, of Bulpitt was arrested on a bond forfeiture warrant for consumption of liquor. 

Linda L. Barrett, 40, of Bulpitt was arrested on a bond forfeiture warrant for driving with a suspended license. 

Kevin W. Kirkpatrick, 29, of Harvel was arrested on a bond forfeiture warrant for driving under the influence of alcohol. 

Destiney L. True, 26, of Palmer was arrested for battery and two counts of criminal damage to property. 

Joseph B. Campogni, 36, of Taylorville was arrested on a bond forfeiture warrant for driving with a suspended license. 

Lacey M. Myers, 22, of Bulpitt was arrested on a bond forfeiture warrant for retail theft. 

Jeanette E. Scherer, 28, of Mascoutah, IL was arrested on a bond forfeiture warrant for retail theft. 

Sarah M. Smysor, 20, of Springfield, was arrested on a bond forfeiture warrant for operation an uninsured vehicle. 

Hilda M. Walker, 58, of Decatur was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs. 

Ribbon Cutting for Viddy's Cab and Limo

A ribbon cutting ceremony earlier this week publicized the opening of a new Taylorville company. Viddy’s Cab and Limo is open for business. Chris Peters of Viddy’s says they want to more than just a taxi service:

Heberling Says 4H Event Coming in February

Even though the Fair season is still months away, preparations are ongoing. Jody Heberling, Christian County 4H Coordinator, says they’ll be a weighing in early next month:

 [audio:heberling4h011212.mp3]comment here[/audio]

If you have questions, call 287-7246.

Three Car Accident

Taylorville Police report an accident that happened just before 5:00pm Tuesday. According to police reports, a car driven by 35-year-old Shane Koches of Taylorville struck the rear end of a car driven by 22-year-old Amanda R. Binkley of Taylorville, pushing her into a vehicle driven by 28-year-old Mallory Crites of Taylorville. Koches reportedly told police the sun was in his eyes and he just didn’t see the other vehicle. No injuries are reported.

Taylorville Man Hospitalized After Aggravated Battery Incident

A Taylorville man is hospitalized after an incident late Wednesday. Taylorville Police were dispatched by 911 to an address in the 800 block of Lewis Street on reports of a man bleeding from the head. They reportedly found that 55-year-old Robert J. Dodd of Taylorville had been struck in the head with an unknown object. Dodd told officers he’d be hit by 29-year-old Jason K. Beaty of Taylorville. Witnesses at the scene said Beaty had left the scene on foot.

Dodd was taken to Taylorville Memorial Hospital, and then transferred to Springfield memorial Hospital because of the seriousness of his injuries.

Taylorville Police arrested Beaty without incident at around 5:30 Thursday morning. He was charged with aggravated battery and then taken to the Christian County Jail.

Taylorvile girls Basketball

as heard on WTIM the taylorville girls basketball team topped SHG with a score of 52 to 42.

Viddy's Cab and Limo Have Grand Opening in Taylorville


 width=Viddy's Cab and Limo  at 1104 W Spresser in Taylorville celebrated their grand opening with a ribbon cutting ceremony Tuesday morning. Several local dignitaries were in attendance.

Viddy's Cab and Limo is a new business that will provide local cab service as well as day trips throughout Illinois. Some of the trips already planned by Viddy's include the Cardinal Caravan on January 16th, Conklins Barn Dinner Theatre on the 20th and 28th and casino excursions on the 18th and 31st. Gather up to 6  of your friends and pile into Viddy's luxury hi-top conversion van for trip to the ball game or transportation to the airport.

Viddy's is licensed and insured. If you're not interested in the trips they have planned, plan your own. Their phone number is 217-820-9121.


State FFA Officers are Heading to China

A group of young leaders from around Illinois are gearing up for an eye-opening trip overseas this month.  Jared White has more...

Lake Land College Offers Fishing for Bass Class

Improve your fishing skills and catch more bass! The Lake Land College Office of Community and Professional Programs is offering Fishing for Bass with Dave Shadow. All skill levels are welcome to attend.

The class will be presented by Dave Shadow, national fishing champion, outdoor writer, tournament angler and instructional guide. In Mattoon the class will meet Thursdays, January 26 to February 16, from 6:30-8:30 p.m. on campus in Northeast room 114. In Effingham the class will meet Saturday, February 4 and 11, from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., at the Kluthe Center in room 201.

Cost for all these courses is $50.00. Children ages 12 - 17 should register in the CE section. Adults ages 18 and above should register in the CNC section.

For more information, contact the Office of Community and Professional Programs, at 217-234-5219. To register online using a VISA/MC/Discover, go to www.lakelandcollege.edu/learn, and choose the Recreation, Leisure & Exercise link

EITC Increase To Benefit Working Families

Low-income workers will have a few extra dollars in their pockets come this time next year, thanks to a new bill that increases the Earned Income Tax Credit.  State Representative Barbara Flynn Currie says the idea is to reward hard-working families.

 [audio:eitc1011112.mp3]comment here[/audio]

The EITC will jump from five-percent to seven-point-five-percent next year.  It jumps to ten-percent in 2014.  About two-and-a-half-million families will benefit from the increase.

 [audio:eitc2011112.mp3]comment here[/audio]

State Senator Toi Hutchinson says she understands the struggle of working mothers.

Committee Approves Health Benefits For Civil Union Spouses

Good news for Springfield workers engaged in civil unions.  A committee has reversed a decision not to provide health benefits to their spouses. Bernard Cherkasov, with Equality Illinois says that's a great move.

 [audio:civilunions011112.mp3]comment here[/audio]

The vote to reverse the decision comes after a public outcry against the original decision not to provide the benefits.  The committee originally proposed the benefits would cost 725-thousand dollars.  New estimates come in much lower at just 66-thousand dollars. 

ICC Approves Natural Gas Rate Hikes

Ameren Illinois customers are likely to see an increase on their natural gas bills in the next few weeks.  The Illinois Commerce Commission gave the company the green light to raise rates but Jim Chilsen with the Citizen's Utility Board says this fight isn't over. 

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Chilsen says an appeal will not stop the increase from taking effect.  But if they win, the companies will have to reimburse the customers.  Ameren had asked for a 51-million dollar increase.  The ICC also approved rate hikes for Peoples Gas and North Shore Gas.

Wiseman Touts Casino Night

Big Brothers Big Sisters Capital Region has a fun fundraiser coming up. Vanessa Wiseman says Casino Night is coming up later this month:

 [audio:wisemanbbbscasinonite011112.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Big Brothers Big Sisters biggest Christian County fundraiser, Bow for Kid’s Sake, will be February 24th and 25th at the Olde Bowl in Taylorville. If you have questions call 753-1216.

Fikri on New Year Nutrition

With the second week of the New Year underway, many are finding it hard to stay on their diets. But Joyce Fikri of the St. Louis Dairy Council says good nutrition is important even when you’re trying to lose weight:

 [audio:fikrinewyear011112.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Fikri says those trying to shave off pounds should know there is a large variety of low-fat dairy products available, which provide nutrition but are diet friendly.

Mayor Updates Magazine Contest

We’ve been telling you about a contest being put on by Reader’s Digest Magazine called “We Hear You, America”. City Mayor Greg Brotherton called in on the WTIM Open Line this week to update listeners on the city’s involvement:

 [audio:mayorbroreadersdigest011112.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Go to readerdigest.com/America if you’d like to vote.

Assumption Woman Arrested for Murder Charges

The Christian County Sheriff’s Office announced the arrest of Elisabeth Gunter (44) of Assumption on the charges of Murder, Armed Robbery and Motor Vehicle Theft which occurred in Howell County, Missouri.

Ms. Gunter was arrested on Monday, January 9th, 2012 by the Christian County Sheriff’s Office without incident. The arrest comes after an extensive investigation by the Christian County Sheriff’s Office, Illinois State Police Zone 4 Investigations Unit, Assumption Police Department, Missouri Highway Patrol and the Howell County Sheriff’s Office.

On Tuesday, January 10th, 2012 she appeared in Christian County Court before the Honorable Judge Bradley Paisley. Ms. Gunter signed an extradition waiver releasing her to the custody of Missouri authorities.

Anyone with information pertaining to this, or any other crime, is requested to contact the Christian County Sheriff’s Office (824-4961), their local law enforcement agency or Christian County Crime Stoppers at (1-800-568-TIPS) or (824-9100)

Quinn Favors Gaming In Rockford

Governor Pat Quinn says he's open to putting a casino in Rockford.

 [audio:quinncasino011012.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Quinn says he's working with legislative leaders, lawmakers and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel to work out a plan that everybody likes.  He says there must be strong oversight plus money that goes toward improving education in the state.  Quinn supports adding five casinos across the state but he is opposed to having slot machines at race tracks. 

Quinn Wants People To Walk Across Illinois

Governor Quinn wants people in Illinois to walk 167 miles during the year.  It's part of his Walk Across Illinois initiative to get people focused on living a healthier lifestyle.

Senator Accused Of Submitting Forged Signatures

One watchdog group says State Senator John O. Jones submitted forged signatures to the state board of elections.  Jones denies that claim.

 [audio:jones1011012.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Adam Andrzejewski with the "For the Good of Illinois" PAC didn't actually object to the signatures.  But, he says his job is to expose political corruption no matter what side of the aisle it occurs on.  He also says some of Jones' petitions were circulated in prisons and schools, which is an ethics violation.  He wants the state Inspector General to follow up on those alleged violations.

 [audio:jones2011012.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Jones withdrew from the race after Senator Kyle McCarter successfully challenged Jones' petitions.  McCarter says Jones' withdrawal is good enough for him.

Crime of the Week for January 9th

This week CRIME STOPPERS is seeking information about a vehicle theft that occurred in Taylorville.

Sometime during the overnight hours between Friday January 6, 2012 and Saturday January 7, 2012, person or persons unknown took a vehicle from a residence, located at1504 West Park Avenue.  The vehicle was later recovered in the 1500 block ofWest Elm Street.  Items may have been taken from the garage of the residence during the incident.

Please call CRIME STOPPERS if you have any information about this crime or any other crimes or wanted persons. CRIME STOPPERS will pay cash rewards up to $1,000.00 for information that leads to an arrest and you DO NOT have to give your name. CRIME STOPPERS will pay double the normal reward for information leading to an arrest for the crime of the week 

You can contact CRIME STOPPERS at 824-9100, at our website ChristianCountyCrimeStoppers.org, or by texting CRIMES (274637) keyword CCCS and then your tip.  As always you will remain anonymous.

Heart of America Grazing Conference

Livestock producers from across the Midwest will gather in southern Illinois later this month.  Jared White has more...

Traffic Accident with Taylorville Teen

Thursday night just after 8:00 a vehicle was rear-ended at the intersection of Springfield Rd. and Cheney Streets. According to reports, 39-year-old James R. Hashauer of Taylorville was waiting go traffic when he was apparently rear-ended by a vehicle driven by a Taylorville 16-year-old. Minor damage was reported, but both vehicles could be driven from the scene.

Accident During Rush Hour

An accident Friday evening just after 5:00pm caused damage to three vehicles. According to reports, cars driven by 66-year-old David J. Neville and 17-year-old Samantha J. Manion were stopped waiting for traffic at the intersection of Adams and Shumway in Taylorville when a vehicle driven by 18-year-old Hayden M. Aderman of Taylorville reportedly plowed into the rear of Manion’s vehicle, which then struck the rear of Neville’s vehicle. Aderman’s vehicle had to be towed from the scene. No injuries were reported.

Area Arrests

Friday night just before 9:30, Taylorville Police tried to pull over a brown pickup truck after the driver apparently committed a traffic violation. According to reports, the driver was stopped near the intersection of Cherokee and the alley behind E. Ash Street. The truck then reportedly backed into the patrol unit, and then the driver allegedly jumped out and began running. An officer tackled the suspect. 26-year-old Aaron J. Buckler of Taylorville. He was arrested and taken to the Taylorville Police Department where he was processed and released on $300 cash bond.

Boldig Says Lakeshore Will get Involved in Community

For the last few years, Lakeshore Golf Course in Taylorville has ceased to be the popular destination it once was. But Jeff Boldig of J and D Management says this year will be a different story:

 [audio:boldiglakeshoregolf011012.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Boldig says the golf course will be better than ever by the time spring rolls around.

Marijuana Should Remain Illegal: Mayor

The State of Michigan is considering legalizing marijuana. The wisdom of that came into question on Monday morning’s “WTIM  Open Line”. Among the callers expressing disapproval of the idea was Taylorville Mayor Greg Brotherton:

Villas of Hollybrook Offerings

The popularity of Assisted Living is growing. Lisa Schmitz, of the Villas of Hollybrook in Shelbyville, says they offer flexibility to their clients, depending on their needs:

 [audio:villasofhollybrook010912.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Schmitz says their clients find a variety of activities are available for them:

 [audio:villasofhollybrook2011012.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Villas of Hollybrook is located on Rte. 16 in Shelbyville, across from the Johnstowne Mall.  

MetroEast Mayor Has Home Searched By FBI And IRS Agents

A MetroEast mayor is the target of an FBI investigation but he says he's quote, "clean as a whistle."  Alorton Mayor Randy McCallum's says the FBI and IRS searched his home looking for tax increment financing documents.

[audio:metroeastfbi010912.mp3]comment here[/audio] 

This latest development comes only recently after Alorton Public Safety Director Harry Halter was charged with official misconduct.  Agents removed a computer, weapons, a safe and boxes of paperwork.  When reached by phone FBI officials stated they cannot comment on the case.

Republicans Point To Unfavorable Budget Outlook

Governor Pat Quinn's budget projections for the next three years reveal an expected shortfall of 500 million dollars this year.  Springfield Senator Larry Bomke, says he agrees with Quinn's anticipated budget overall, but wishes there were more cuts.

 [audio:gopbudget1010912.mp3]comment here[/audio]

A report released by Senate Minority Leader Christine Radogno states that Illinois will be in worse shape than before last year's income tax increase if the governor's projections are followed.  Radogno's and Bomke say they anticipate more budget cuts unless the tax increase is made permanent.

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Springfield Senator Larry Bomke says he would like to see budget expenditures return to what they were nearly a decade ago.

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Springfield Senator Larry Bomke says he thinks Quinn is showing the right mentality by including proposed budget cuts for the upcoming years.

Eagle Event Planned This Weekend

Eagle watching is expected to draw thousands of people to the Riverbend over the next couple of months.  There are several meet and greets scheduled in the area but a new event is being added this weekend. 

 [audio:eaglejanuary010912.mp3]comment here[/audio]

The new Audubon Center at Riverlands will host the Alton Eagle Festival from 10am-2pm.  The CVB has recently published a new eagle watching guide, touting the Riverbend's great location for eagle watching, with the confluence of the Mississippi, Missouri and Illinois Rivers.

Handicapped Parking Crackdown A Success

Secretary of State Jesse White says a recent crackdown on illegal handicapped parking was a success.  He says most of the people ticketed were busted using someone else's placard.

Law Professor Says Pension Reform Constitutional

Two union leaders are considering a legal challenge to the new pension law that strips them of their state pension but law professor Ann Lousin says their case won't stand.

State Police Crack Down on Illegal Parking

Secretary of State Jesse White has announced that the Secretary of State Police issued 187 citations during a statewide crack down on people who illegally park in disability parking spaces at local malls.  The enforcement kicked off on Black Friday, November 25th and continued through the end of December.

Sixty-five people were issued tickets for improper use of a disability parking space or parking in a disability space without a placard or license plate during the holiday season.  One hundred and twenty-two people were cited with misuse of a disability parking placard, or using someone else’s placard.  One hundred and sixteen placards were confiscated and a total of 5,696 placards were checked.

The fine for illegally using a placard or disability license plates without the authorized holder of the placard or disability license plates present is a maximum of $500.  In addition, violators can be subject to a 30-day administrative driver’s license suspension from the Secretary of State for the first offense.  The fine for parking in an accessible parking space without a parking placard or disability license plates can be as much as $350.



Area Arrests

A Taylorville woman keeps finding herself driving down the railroad tracks. Wednesday night just after 9:00, police were called to the area south of ADM on reports of a vehicle on the train tracks. The driver, 78-year-old Helen L. Wattelet of Taylorville was arrested on DIU charges. She was taken to the Taylorville Police Department, where she was released on a notice to appear. But that’s not the end of the story. The next day, around 3:20pm, cops were notified that Wattelet was on the railroad tracks again. She had apparently driven between the crossing arms at the intersection of McAdam Drive and Esther streets, proceeding about a hundred feet down the track before the tires came off the rims. The vehicle sustained minor damage.

Last Tuesday, Taylorville police were summoned to the 500 block of S. Shawnee Street on reports of a man trying to break into an apartment. Police arrested 27-year-old Charles P. Wolfe of Bulpitt on charges of criminal trespass. He was released on a notice to appear.

Jason A. Loucks, 35, of Pickeyville was arrested on a bond forfeiture warrant for possession of drug paraphernalia. 

Justin L. Barnes, 33, of Pana was arested on a bond forfeiture warrant for violating an order of protection. 

Ethan W. Alberts, 25, of Taylorville was arrested on an original warrant for theft. 



Fursteneau Says Money Trickling in

Taylorville Schools are in fairly good financial shape compared to many districts in these tough economic times. Superintendent Dr. Greg Fursteneau says that state money continues to trickle in:

Extension Offers Excursion

With winter here, gardeners may be frustrated by a lack of activity. If that’s the case for you, Andrew Holzinger of the Extension Office tells Regional Radio listeners there’s a trip coming up:

 [audio:exttripholzinger010912.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Again you can find out more by calling 859-9604.

Festival of Lights Big Success in 2011

Now that the dust is settling from the holidays it’s time to see how various activities turn out. Tad Mayhall of the Shelbyville Chamber of Commerce says this year’s Festival of Lights was a big success.



 The Taylorville Community School District Board met Monday night. They heard reports from Mrs. Ganci, the principal of Memorial Elementary School and Mr. Richardson, principal of Taylorville High School. Both reports pertained to the improvement plans of the schools. Mrs. Ganci stated in her report that with 70% free and reduced lunches, along with a 23% mobility factor, the testing numbers for students at Memorial was a little misleading. 1 of 4 students at Memorial School, this year has left and been replaced with other students. Their will be new testing in 2014 that should be more accurate due to fact that the testing will be done 2 times, giving teachers and administrators a better read on the growth of their students.

Mr. Richardson outlined an extensive plan that may need to be implemented if the testing scores for the high school should fall short of the required number. The high school has fallen short for the past 5 years. If they fall short again this year, the improvement plan will need to implemented. The plan consisted of many parts which included involving parents in their child’s education through open houses in the fall, personal contact from teachers and increased activity from the Parent Advisory Board.

The board also heard a review of the District Technology by Mr. Kuntzman. The main part of his report centered around the need to revamp the Elementary and Jr. High Computer labs. The labs are definitely outdated. It would take approximately $149,000 to update the equipment in both the Elementary and Jr. High labs.

The meeting was adjourned shortly after 8 pm.

Blues Best Oilers

Carlo Colaiacovo provided three assists as the Blues rallied from a 3-1 deficit in the third period for a 4-3 win over the Oilers.  David Backes and Alex Pietrangelo each registered a goal and an assist for St. Louis, which has won two straight.  Matt D'Agostini also lit the lamp for the Blues.  Jaroslav Halak made 29 saves in net for the victors.  The Blues wrap up a three-game homestand tomorrow night against the Colorado Avalanche.

Shelbyville Basketball

As heard on 98.3 The Shelbyville Rams top Tremont with a score of 47 to 45.

Jim Wiesemeyer on Farm Bill Draft

The commodity group infighting that surfaced during the drafting of a farm bill proposal for the now-defunct “Super Committee” will make it more difficult to write the legislation in regular order.  That’s according to veteran ag policy-watcher Jim Wiesemeyer, who looks for many of the features of the draft bill to ultimately find their way into law.

 [audio:informaFarmBill1.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Wiesemeyer, senior vice president of policy and trade issues at Informa Economics, says the most significant policy change in the draft farm bill was the re-coupling of government payments to production.

 [audio:informaFarmBill2.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Wiesemeyer predicts budget-cutters will go after crop insurance premium subsidies after they whack the Commodity Title.  He says that’s because producer subsidies account for 60 percent of the nearly 9-billion federal dollars spent annually on crop insurance. 

NCGA Nominating Committee Accepting Applications for the 2013 Corn Board

The NCGA Nominating Committee is now accepting applications from members for the 2013 Corn Board. The Board represents the organization on all matters while directing both policy and supervising day-to-day operations. Board members serve the organization in a variety of ways. They represent the federation of state organizations, supervise the affairs and activities of NCGA in partnership with the chief executive officer and implement NCGA policy established by the Corn Congress. Members also act as spokespeople for the NCGA and enhance the organization's public standing on all organizational and policy issues.

NCGA President, and central Illinois farmer, Garry Niemeyer stressed that every grower, even if he or she is unaware, has a wealth of knowledge and perspective to offer the organization. He also notes that serving fellow farmers through the Corn Board rewards volunteers with training and experience that hone leadership and communications skills. Applications are due Friday, January 13.

There's Still Time to Register for Classes at Lake Land College

If you need to still register for classes at Lake Land College, there’s still time.

Extended registration hours will be held on campus in Mattoon Friday, Jan. 6 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Counselors will be available to assist students at that time, too. Students who need counseling services should report to the Student Services wing of the Luther Student Center.

Classes start Jan. 9 and students may add courses to their schedule through the first two instructional days of the semester or module.  Students may add an evening class prior to the second class meeting.

Walk-in placement testing will be available on Jan. 9 and 10 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. For placement testing, report to the Placement Testing Center located in Webb Hall.

For additional information about the registration process, contact Counseling Services at (217) 234-5232.  For questions about placement testing, call (217) 234-5301. New students can view spring course offerings online at www.lakelandcollege.edu or request a printed schedule at (217) 234-5434.


State Offers Emergency Tips For Disabled

The Illinois Emergency Management Agency is urging people with disabilities to prepare in case disaster strikes.  Spokesperson Patti Thompson says some things get lost in the cracks when it comes to planning for an emergency.

 [audio:iemadisabled010612.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Thompson says it's better to be prepared than not when something uncontrollable occurs.  A booklet is available to help address emergency preparedness issues for people with visual, cognitive or mobility impairments; citizens who are deaf or hard of hearing; those who utilize service animals or life support systems; and senior citizens.  More tips and information is available online at Ready.Illinois.gov . 

Video Poker Machines Expected In Illinois In Fall 2012

Video gaming is supposed to be up and running by fall of this year and the state has signed a contract with Scientific Gaming Corporation to provide software for gaming systems.  Gene O'Shea, with the Illinois Gaming Board, says the software will track all video poker outlets in the state.

 [audio:videogaming1010612.mp3]comment here[/audio]

The contract is worth 69-million dollars over six years.  Illinois businesses that would like to get a video gaming terminal can apply for a license online with the Illinois Gaming Board.

 [audio:videogaming2010612.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Gene O'Shea, with the Illinois Gaming Board, says the software has not been created yet.

New Law Prevents Pension Double Dipping

The days of dipping into more than one pension system are over in Illinois.  House Minority Leader Tom Cross says a new law closes loopholes that allow people to collect two or more pension. 

Pana Man Appointed Chairman of the Downstate Local Records Commission

Illinois Secretary of State and State Archivist Jesse White has announced that Paul C. Schmitz of Pana was appointed chairman of the Downstate Local Records Commission. The appointment was made by Governor Pat Quinn with the advice White, whose office oversees the commission’s activities. 

Schmitz is currently chairman of the Christian County Board.  The position of Downstate Local Records Commission must be filled by a county board chairman.

White and his staff advise the local records commission and provide it with support services. Under state statute, no local unit of government in areas of Illinois outside of Cook County may dispose of a record without first receiving permission of the Downstate Local Records Commission. The Downstate Local Records Commission meets monthly in Springfield to discuss disposal requests and issues related to records retention and accessibility to government records.

Other members of the commission include Macon County State’s Attorney Jack Ahola, Beardstown Mayor Robert Walters, St. Clair County Auditor Patty Sprague, Illinois State Archives Director David Joens and Gary Stockton of the Illinois State Historian’s office. Board members are not paid for their service on the commission.

Shelby County Health Deparment Sponsors Immunization Clinic

The Shelby County Health Department has an immunization clinic at Shelby County Health Department Wednesday, January 18th from 8:30AM-11:30AM. The clinic is open to all children ages 2 months to 18 years. Vaccines offered are Polio, Hepatitis B, Menactra (Meningitis vaccine), DTaP, TD, Tdap, Varicella (chickenpox), MMR, Prevnar (pneumonia), Pediarix (DTaP-HEPB-IPV Combo), Rotarix, Pentacel, Hepatitis A, and Gardasil (Human Papillomavirus vaccine). Boosters of MMR, DTaP, and Polio are required after four years of age or prior to kindergarten entrance. The administration fee is $10.00 for each immunization. Make all checks payable to the Shelby County Health Department or IPA Medicaid Card is accepted. No one is denied if unable to pay.

If you are bringing children that attend school outside of Shelby County or are new to the school system in Shelby County, you must bring their past immunization records for the nurse to evaluate. Pre-registration before the day of the clinic is necessary to assure appointment time and vaccine availability. Clinic size is limited. All consents must be signed by parent or legal guardian and are valid for 30 days. If you have any questions concerning your child and immunization requirements, call the Shelby County Health Department at 774-9555.

Area Arrests

Reports of a domestic disturbance led to the arrest of a local man. According to reports, police were called to the Hannon Trailer Court about a couple in a loud argument. After a brief investigation, they arrested 20-year-old Robert V. McCauley Jr. of Taylorville on charges of illegal consumption of alcohol by a minor. McCauley was taken to the Taylorville Police Department where he was processed and released on a notice to appear.

A concerned citizen apparently alerted police to a drunk driver around 10:30 Tuesday night. According to reports, the citizen told police the woman was last seen headed north on Simpson Street. Cops caught up with the vehicle, and arrested 33-year-old Melissa A. Hall. She was charged with DUI and was processed and released after paying a $100 cash bond and surrendering her driver’s license.

Mayor Encourages Participation in Reader's Digest Contest

At Tuesday night’s Taylorville City Council meeting, Mayor Greg Brotherton took a few minutes to encourage aldermen and the public to participate in a magazine contest:

 [audio:mayorreadersdigest010612.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Again, go to readersdigest.com/America.

Chilli Cook Off in Shelbyville

Those looking for comfort food during this cold time of year should know about a Chilli Cook Off next week in Shelbyville. Tad Mayhall of the Shelbyville Chamber of Commerce says the event is planned for Saturday January 14:

Sheriff Proud of Cost-Cutting Measures

In these cash-strapped times, even government has to find ways to spare the budget. Christian county Sheriff Bruce Kettelkamp says he’s proud of cost-cutting measures undertaken by his deputies:

 [audio:sherrifbudgetsavings010612.mp3]comment here[/audio]

The Sheriff says he’s grateful to the deputies for their hard work and sacrifice.  

Local Basketball Scores

As heard on WTIM, Taylorville fell to Sacred Heart Griffin with a score of 70-45.

As heard on WRAN, Shelbyville defeated Clinton with a score of 46-32.

One Vehicle Accident in Christian County

46 year old Lanny W. Barker, of Taylorville, was traveling north on Cty. Hwy. #22 at 1680 north.  Barker lost control of his 2003 Ford Taurus SE and went off the east shoulder.  The vehicle overturned several times and came to rest on its roof in the field next to the east ditch.  Minor injuries were reported. 

Nokomis Area Fire Protection District Receiving Grant Funding

Congressman John Shimkus has announced funding through the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program to the Nokomis Area Fire Protection District.  The grant program is administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, part of the U. S. Department of Homeland Security.

Nokomis will be receiving $166,250.  The grant is through the Vehicle Acquisition Program, as the district will be purchasing a brush truck.

Fire departments serving less than 20,000 residents are required to provide a five percent non-federal match for these one year grants.  Departments serving between 20,000 and 50,000 residents must provide a ten percent match, and larger departments must provide a 20 percent match.

Rutherford: It Could Be Game Over For Santorum In Illinois

The GOP race to the White House is heating up and after last night's photo finish in Iowa, Rick Santorum told the rest of the bunch that it was "game on."  But Illinois State Treasurer Dan Rutherford, who's heading Mitt Romney's campaign, says Santorum better come suited up.

 [audio:rutherfordromney010511.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Rutherford has already filed the paperwork to ensure Romney makes it on the March primary ballot.  He says other candidates should take Illinois seriously because it will play a major role in deciding who gets the GOP nomination.  That's because Illinois has 54 delegates.

Mount Vernon Senator Withdraws From Race

Mount Vernon Senator John O. Jones is pulling out of the race to keep his seat in the legislature.

 [audio:jonesmccarter010512.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Jones collected more than 12-hundred signatures but about 300 were deemed invalid.  Thanks to new redistricting lines, Jones was squaring off against incumbent GOP Senator Kyle McCarter.  Jones has served in the Illinois legislature since 1995.  He says he's keeping his options open and isn't abandoning his political future. 

Cellphone Ban Inevitable

Senate President John Cullerton says a cell phone ban could be coming down the line for Illinois drivers. 

Two Car Collision in Christian County

24 year old Brittany A. Manley, of Assumption, was southbound on 2600 E. Rd.  She stopped at the stop sign at 250 N. Rd. As she began her left hand turn, 21 year old Rachael M. Marley of Pana, was approaching the same stop sign.  Marley was reportedly traveling too fast to stop, and ran the stop sign.  Marley then struck the left side of Manley's 2005 Pontiac Grand Prix.  No injuries were reported.  Both vehicles received damage and Marley's 1995 Oldsmobile was towed from the scene. 

Deer Accident Ends in Citation

30 year old Ryan A. Ginger, of Nokomis, was west bound on twp. rd. 200 N. Rd.  Ginger swerved to miss a deer and ended up in a ditch on the northside of the road, almost to 1925 E. Rd.  He was issued a citation for failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident. 

Area Arrests

A Taylorville teen apparently wanted on a Sangamon County warrant turned herself in on New Year’s Eve. 19-year-old Amanda M. Huber was arrested and taken to the Christian County Jail.

Monday morning around 9:30, patrolling Taylorville Police Officers noticed a vehicle driven by a man who they believed was wanted in Montgomery County. The car was stopped at the intersection of Madison and Spresser Streets. Police confirmed that 52-year-old Brian E. Stone of Nokomis was wanted on a warrant. They also reported discovered that Stone was driving on a suspended Florida license. Stone was taken to the Christian County Jail.

On New Year’s Day, Taylorville Police encountered a woman they believed was wanted on two warrants. After a short investigation officers arrested 34-year-old Gayle L. Miller of Taylorville. She was taken to the Christian County Jail, where she was held in lieu of bond.

50 year-old Marcy A. Calandro of Taylorville was arrested on a bond forfeiture warrant for operating an uninsured vehicle. 


4H Has Busy Schedule in 2012

With the new year come new events for the Christian County 4H. According to Christian Count 4H Coordinator Jodi Herbling, they’re already thinking about the County Fair season:

 [audio:heberlingupcomingevents010412.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Heberling says the 4H Memorial Camp is at Allerton Park near Monticello.

Golden Circle Nutrition Program

One of the many programs provided by the Christian County Senior Center in Taylorville is the Golden Circle Nutrition Program. Judy Gates of the Senior Center says there are just a few requirements:

Ameren Moves To Implement Smart Grid

Ameren Illinois is taking steps to modernize its electric distributions system.  Spokesperson Leigh Morris says the upgrade is designed to benefit customers and improve service, despite all of the controversy surrounding the so called "Smart Grid."

 [audio:amerensmartgrid010412.mp3]comment here[/audio]

The company laid out its action plan in paperwork filed with the Illinois Commerce Commission.  The ICC has until October to review the plan and make a decision.  If all goes well, Morris says new rates will go into effect at that point.  Customers can see how the new rates will impact them after February 1st by logging onto IllinoisRateFacts.com.

Gaming Expansion Still Alive

The hopes of adding more gaming across the state are still alive.  Senate President John Cullerton says the Governor's plan isn't that far off from what the legislature supports. 

Cullerton Open To Ideas On Corporate Taxes

House Republicans are suggesting a plan to repeal the state's corporate income tax hike.  Senate President John Cullerton says the state can't afford to lose the money the state makes on the taxes but he's open to ideas on how to make the tax code more fair. 

[audio:taxrepeal010412.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Cullerton says there's room for change and he's willing to look at other states and hear ideas on how to make the tax structure more fair.  When it all boils down to it, Cullerton says Illinois has a very friendly business climate.  He emphasizes the fact that Illinois has lower income tax rates than neighboring states. 

USDA Taking Inventory Of Illinois Wineries

The Illinois Grape Growers and Vintners Association is taking inventory of the wineries across the state.  Megan Pressnall says the idea is to improve the quality of wines produced in Illinois.

Central Illinois Girl Scouts Start Cookie Activity

The Girl Scouts of Central Illinois kick off  annual Girl Scout Cookie Activity on January 13. Girl Scouts throughout the region will take orders from family, friends, and neighbors through February 5, 2012.

This year’s sale offers eight cookie varieties - Thin Mints, Caramel DeLites, Shortbreads, Lemonades, Peanut Butter Patties, Peanut Butter Sandwiches, Shout Outs, and Thanks-A-Lots. Every year, thousands of girls gain valuable knowledge while providing the community with a special treat. Operation Cookie Share – returns this year! Girl Scouts  will once again offer Operation Cookie Share as part of the Cookie Sale. Operation Cookie Share allows customers to not only support their local Girl Scouts, but also show their support for our military. When customers are asked if they would like to purchase cookies, they will also have the option to purchase additional boxes for military troops.

This is the third year for the program, which has resulted in a total 145,164 boxes being delivered to military troops. Operation Cookie Share will run from pre-sales ordering throughout Cookie Booth season. Operation Cookie Share is held in sponsorship with the Adopt-a-Soldier program sponsored by State Farm’s military affinity group (MAG), an employee resource group that supports the military and theirfamilies.

American Farm Bureau Federation Set to Meet for Annual Meeting

American Farm Bureau Federation President Bob Stallman wants delegates at the group’s upcoming annual meeting in Honolulu to provide clear direction on farm policy.  The delegates are expected to engage in a spirited debate on a safety net recommendation for the 2012 Farm Bill that omits any reference to direct and counter-cyclical payments.    

Instead, Stallman says they’ll be asked to endorse a catastrophic revenue loss program…

[audio:stallman1.mp3]comment here[/audio]

The program currently envisioned involves taxpayers picking up most of the cost of revenue-based crop insurance policies for farmers that would cover losses of more than 30 percent.  According to the AFBF leader.

 [audio:stallman2.mp3]comment here[/audio]

The Systemic Risk Reduction proposal enjoys broad but not unanimous support within the nation’s largest farm organization.  Some Farm Bureau members in the southern U.S. argue that moving to revenue protection would leave them without an effective safety net.   

New Laws for the State of Illinois This Year

New laws to crack down on repeat methamphetamine offenders and to strengthen the Illinois DNA database are among the measures initiated by Attorney General Lisa Madigan in the 2011 legislative session that took effect Jan. 1.

House Bill 1908 requires that repeat meth offenders must have a prescription to purchase or possess products containing pseudoephedrine, a key meth ingredient. The law targets the rise of “small-batch” cooks who obtain small, legal amounts of ingredients to make meth for their own use or a quick sale.

House Bill 3238 will significantly strengthen the state’s DNA database by requiring all sex offenders registered in Illinois to provide DNA specimen, regardless of their conviction date or the state in which they were convicted. It also requires DNA collection from offenders arrested for the most serious violent crimes after they are indicted or after a court finding of probable cause. The law will strengthen authorities’ ability to identify and convict offenders of egregious crimes and increase their ability to avoid wrongful convictions.

House Bill 3237 amends the Prevailing Wage Act to make violations a felony and to prohibit those with criminal convictions from working on taxpayer-funded public projects for a period of four years. The new changes should increase enforcement and, as a result, bring about greater compliance and help to prevent fraud on public bodies.

Senate Bill 2027 broadens the definition of the crime of forgery to include various ways a document can be altered to ensure individuals who create such documents cannot escape criminal liability.


Stallman Discusses Web Based Learning

During the winter, travel can become hazardous, but it need not affect your education. Scott Stallman of Lincoln Land Community College in Taylorville says there are many advantages to taking classes online:

 [audio:stallmanwebclasses010412.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Stallman says you can call the Lincoln Land Easter Region Education Center at 287-7081.

Wiseman Touts Bowling Event

For Big Brothers Big Sisters Capital Region, one of the biggest fundraisers of the year is coming up. Vanessa Wiseman of Big Brothers Big Sisters says they’ll be bowling for dollars coming up in February:

 [audio:wisemanbbbsbowling010412.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Again, Bow for Kid’s Sake will take place February 25th and 26th at the Olde Bowl in Taylorville.  

Christain County Soil and Water Conservation Disitrct Holding Director Election

The Christian County Soil and Water Conservation District will be holding their Director Election on Thursday, January 19. The election is for all owners and occupiers of lands lying within the boundaries of the Christian County Soil and water Conservation District. The election will be held at the Soil and Water Conservation District office located at the USDA Service Center, 951-2 West Spresser Street, Taylorville, Illinois. There will be three directors elected for a two-year term. Election hours are 7:00am to 5:30pm.

Taylorville Community Credit Union Recognized as a 5-Star Rated Facility

Bauer Financial Inc. out of Florida, the nation’s leading bank and credit union research firm, has recognized the Taylorville Community Credit Union as a “Superior 5-star” rated credit union. The 5-star rating denotes that TCCU is one of the best in the country in terms of its overall financial performance. In fact, TCCU has earned the designation for 66 consecutive quarters, putting it into an even more elite group of “Exceptional Performance Institutions”. The Taylorville Community credit Union was established in 1956. It has branches in Taylorville, Litchfield, and Hillsboro.

Area Arrests

Taylorville Police were summoned to 314 N. Simpson Street last Thursday evening after an apparent domestic disturbance. Ron Faber reported told police his girlfriend was wanted on a warrant. After a quick investigation, officers arrested 26-year-old Crystal L. Johnson of Taylorville on a Macon County failure to appear warrant on a shoplifting charge. Johnson was taken to the Christian County Jail, where she was held in lieu of bond.

Taylorville Police were called to the Wal-Mart Store an hour before midnight on New Year’s Eve on reports of some stolen booze. Acting on information from store employees, police arrested 20-year-old Kyle Shoemaker of Taylorville on burglary and alcohol violation charges. Three juveniles who were reportedly with Shoemaker were also arrested on charges of illegal possession of alcohol.

The New Year started off on the wrong foot for a Taylorville Man. AT 2:00am on New Year’s Day, cops were called to 48 Houston Street on reports of a disturbance. After an investigation, 41-year-old Ronnie D. Sampson of Taylorville was arrested on charges of domestic battery.

New President & CEO for Pana Community Hospital

 width=Roland Carlson, President and CEO of Pana Community Hospital along with Dave Slater, Chairman of the Board of Directors, and Joyce Morgan, Vice Chairman of the Board officially welcomed Trina Casner to the new position of President  & CEO effective January 1.

In April of 2011, Carlson announced he would be retiring at the end of the year.  Carlson has served as President  & CEO of the hospital since July of 2000.  Many improvements to the hospital have occurred under Carlson’s leadership including the medical mall expansion, “facelift” changes throughout the hospital and hospital grounds, large equipment purchases (including a new CT Scanner and Digital Mammography), and design, implementation and completion of the Rehab/Wellness Center.  Most recently, years of planning have resulted in the hospital implementing a new computer system called “McKesson Paragon”.

Carlson and his wife, Rosemary, a former teacher at Pana High School have shared that they plan to continue to make Pana their home.  Mr. Carlson has stated that Pana Community Hospital has been the best job he has had in his entire career in hospital management and thanks the board members, medical staff, administrative team members and all the PCH employees for making his time at Pana Community Hospital memorable and rewarding.

Crime Stoppers is Seeking Information About Series of Thefts

This week Christian County CRIME STOPPERS is seeking information about a series of thefts that occurred in Taylorville.

Over the past few weeks there have still been several thefts from vehicle that have occurred in Taylorville and in Christian County.  Crime stoppers would like to remind the public to make sure to secure your vehicles when at your residence or while parked at a public place.  Also make sure to remove any items of value from the vehicle when unattended and keep them out of sight while inside the vehicle.

Please call CRIME STOPPERS if you have information about any crimes or wanted persons. CRIME STOPPERS will pay cash rewards up to $1,000.00 for information that leads to an arrest and you DO NOT have to give your name. CRIME STOPPERS will pay double the normal reward for information leading to an arrest for the crime of the week.

You can contact CRIME STOPPERS at 824-9100, at our website ChristianCountyCrimeStoppers.org, or by texting CRIMES (274637) keyword CCCS and then your tip.  As always you will remain anonymous.


Furstenau says LLCC Plan Allows Off-campus Time for Students

An agreement by the Taylorville School District and Lincoln Land Community College would mean students might be attending High School and taking college courses at the same time.  Dr. Greg Furstenau, Superintendent of Taylorville Schools, says that means exceptions to the High School’s policy:

 [audio:furstenau1010312.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Dr. Furstenau says Taylorville students will be back in class Wednesday after Christmas Vacation.


Lisa Sims Talks About Relay for Life

Some events take a lot of planning and preparation.  One of those events is the American Cancer Society’s annual Relay for Life.  Lisa Sims, one of the organizers of the event, says there are a lot of details to attend to, but it’s a labor of love:

 [audio:sims010312.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Sims says this will be the 5th year she has been associated with Relay for Life.

Weitenhiller Says YMCA Pool is Available

One of the tough things about wintertime is that you can’t indulge in too many outdoor activities.  One activity that usually takes place in the summertime is swimming, and Chris Weitenhiller of the Christian County YMCA says they have the indoor Aquatic Center for those who want to swim even in January:

[audio:weitenhillerpool010312.mp3]comment here[/audio]

The Christian County YMCA is located at 900 McAdam drive in Taylorville.

Record Crop Prices for 2011

2011 was a year for record crop prices, however one expert believes a correction could be in store for 2012.  Jared White has more... 

 [audio:1227112012CropPriceOutlookWRAP.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Listen for Jared White’s WTIM morning and afternoon farm shows at 6:20 am and 12:20 pm every weekday.

Gun Sales are up in Illinois

Gun sales are up in Southern Illinois. The area is known as a hotspot for hunters. In fact hunting brings in millions of dollars of revenue for the region. One gun shop representative says hunting season always brings in big business, but come spring and summer sales, will drop drastically. Sales aren’t just up in Illinois. More than one and a half million background checks have been performed in the U.S. this month. A background check is required on everyone who wants to purchase a gun, including current gun owners. Those who aren’t licensed must attend a gun safety course and get a FOID card.

Sears and Kmart Staying in Illinois

So far, 11 Illinois Sears and Kmart stores are safe from the chopping block. Sears Holdings released a partial list of the roughly 100 stores that will be closing due to poor fourth quarter sales. Governor Pat Quinn announced publicly that he hoped all of the Illinois stores would remain open. Sears Holdings announced the store closures on the heels of a major tax deal it cut with the state to keep its headquarters in Hoffman Sates. That ensures more than six thousand jobs stay in Illinois.

Woman Accused of Cyber Stalking

A Champaign woman is accused of cyber stalking. Parkland College Police say Silver Damsen sent multiple emails to a male staff member at the college, even after authorities asked her to stop. Police didn’t say whether Damsen knows the staff member personally. Damsen has been arrested and is charged with one count of felony cyber stalking. She pleaded not guilty of the charge against her. Her next court appearance will be on Valentine’s Day.

A Man Threatens a County Judge

A Mascoutah man says he’s guilty of threatening a St. Clair County judge. Richard Swing delivered a letter to the judge’s home on July 24th, threating to expose the judge to ridicule, hatred, and contempt if he didn’t misdemeanor and was sentenced to two years confidential discharge. He was originally charged with felony intimidation but a plea deal at the judge’s request helped reduce the charge. Swing was also ordered to get mental health treatment. He is prohibited from making contact with the judge or the judge’s family and must stay at least 500 feet away from the judge’s home.

Taylorville Aldermen Annex Property, Delay Action on Campground Firewood

The Taylorville City Council Tuesday night OK’d the annexation of property into the city, owned by Cheryl Assad at 2020 South Spresser, and delayed action on firewood at the lake campground. They also approved several pay orders relating to the lift station rehab and storm sewer projects.

Taylorville Swears In New Police Officer at Tuesday Night Meeting


Taylorville aldermen Tuesday night held a short but productive City Council meeting. One of the first items of business was the swearing in of a new police officer. Josh Ushman was sworn in by Taylorville city clerk Pam Peabody, with Ushman’s mother Janet holding the Bible during the ceremony.

Taylorville Mayor Discusses City Plans for 2012 and Industrial Park At Tuesday Night Meeting

 width=Taylorville aldermen conducted the city’s business in just 18 minutes in their first meeting of the month and of the year Tuesday night. The meeting was held one day later due to Monday being a legal holiday.

Taylorville mayor Greg Brotherton asked the various aldermanic committees to focus on goals for 2012, and added that the various entities involved in the Taylorville Industrial Park need a plan of action put together in the coming year. The mayor shared those thoughts with Regional Radio News after the meeting.

[audio:BrothertonJan312cut1.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Brotherton added that there’s no other entity more interested in getting the new Taylorville Industrial Park ready for occupancy, than the City.

[audio:BrothertonJan312cut2.mp3]comment here[/audio]

With the Taylorville Sanitary District holding the jurisdiction over the sewers in the city of Taylorville, and no sanitary sewer serving the new Industrial Park, Brotherton says the 2 entities need to work together to come up with a solution that will benefit everyone.

[audio:BrothertonJan312cut3.mp3]comment here[/audio]

Brotherton also encouraged aldermen and residents to vote for Taylorville on the Reader’s Digest web site. The magazine is holding a contest giving cash prizes to the top 18 cities that vote on the web site, with voting closing in a couple of weeks, and Taylorville currently is number 24 out of over 2-thousand cities in the voting.

Taylorville girls basketball

As heard on WTIM the Taylorville girls took on Southeast and lost with a score of 56 to 53.

New Bus Safety and Safety Belt Laws Come into Effect in the New Year

Two important pieces of legislation supported this year by Secretary of State Jesse White will take effect as new laws January 1st and include measures that improve school bus safety as well as increase safety belt usage.

Public Act 97-0466 allows a school bus company that has a reasonable suspicion to believe that their school bus driver is under the influence of alcohol or drugs to require the driver to submit to alcohol and drug testing before driving a school bus.  The Secretary of State’s office will then suspend for three years the school bus permit of a driver who refuses to submit to a test or fails to obtain a zero tolerance for the presence of alcohol, drugs or intoxicating compounds. 

Public Act 97-0016 requires safety belt use for all backseat passengers.  Prior to this change, only front seat passengers were required to where a safety belt under the state’s primary safety belt law.

Illinois State Police with Begin Enforcing New Motor Vehicle Laws

Beginning January 1  Illinois State Police (ISP) will begin enforcing new motor vehicle laws that passed in 2011, as the push to decrease traffic fatalities remains a top priority for law enforcement officials across Illinois.

The ISP’s Fatal Four most common traffic violations – Speeding, DUI, seat belts, and distracted driving, remain a top priority for ISP Troopers to enforce, and will be further enhanced with new laws that take effect on January 1, 2012.

The Illinois State Police continues to support safety education programs and initiatives which have had a direct impact on public safety and have reduced the number of traffic crash fatalities on Illinois roadways.  As of December 29, preliminary data indicates Illinois has experienced 821 traffic crash fatalities in 2011, which are 26 fatalities less than the same time period in 2010.

Seat Belts for All Occupants.  Illinois State Police will enforce a new seat belt law that requires all passengers of a motor vehicle to be properly restrained when the vehicle is operated on a street or highway.

Enforcement of Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration Regulation.

This new regulation prohibits the use of a hand-held mobile device by anyone driving a Commercial Motor Vehicle (CMV).  The regulation also prohibits Motor Carriers from requiring drivers to use a hand-held device while operating a CMV on a highway


Truck Speed Limits.  In July 2011, Governor Pat Quinn signed into law Public Act 97-0202 which amended the Illinois Vehicle Code’s Speed Restrictions.  The new law will take effect on January 3, 2012, and increases the speed limit for second division vehicles traveling on four-lane highways where the speed limit is 65 miles per hour.



ISP Districts will be coordinating enforcement efforts statewide and have identified problem areas and roads to target for the New Year holiday weekend.  Roadside safety check patrols are already underway, and law enforcement officials will be enforcing the laws to ensure that motorists arrive at their final destinations safely.



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