Shelbyville Mayor Jeff Johnson was a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show live from our downtown studios on Friday. Host Jim Finks asked Johnson about the new Lake Trails subdivision coming to Shelbyville. Johnson said how work is hopefully going to begin soon on the subdivision, and how that will help bring businesses to Shelbyville.
Johnson did say that although the developer is hoping to get work started soon, there are still some things in the way of that happening. Johnson pointed out however that the community is working together to try to get the project off the ground.
Johnson also talked about upcoming expansion of the Dacey Trail, mentioning how the town received a grant to continue the trail around the courthouse, as well as down North Morgan. The town is hoping to have something ready for bid soon, so that construction on the project can begin next spring.
Executive Director of the Pana Community Hospital Foundation Kim Rodgers was a recent guest on the WTIM Morning Show. Rodgers talked about the fundraising efforts the hospital has been putting up for a new 3D imaging machine, giving details on one of those upcoming fundraising events.
Rodgers was asked about how you have to be creative to continue to come up with different and engaging fundraising ideas. Rodgers highlighted some of the difficulties that lie with coming up with new fundraising ideas.
For more information on the Pana Community Hospital Foundation, you can contact Kim Rodgers at 562-6271.
Pastor and Coordinator of the Missions for Taylorville Program Bill Kerns was a recent guest on the WTIM Morning Show. Kerns talked about how getting new people involved in the Missions for Taylorville program is invigorating, not only for those new people, but for the people already involved in the organization as well.
Kerns stressed how important it is to attend the Missions for Taylorville meetings, but also mentioned that if you don’t, you’re still welcome to help.
For more information on Missions for Taylorville, or for the volunteer form, visit missionsfortaylorville.org.
Scott Stallman, Associate Vice President for Education Outreach at Lincoln Land Community College was a recent guest on the WTIM Morning Show. Stallman discussed some of the community education offerings at LLCC.
Stallman mentioned how no prior experience is necessary for the class, just a desire to have fun. Stallman also said how one of the benefits of these community outreach classes, is the ability to meet new people with similar interests.
For more information on any of the LLCC community education offerings, call their help line at 786-2432, or if you’d like to sign up for a class, call their registration line at 786-2292.
State Representative Avery Bourne was a guest on the WTIM Morning Show recently. One of the topics discussed was the temporary college funding bill that was recently passed. Bourne talked about how that bill may finally show that there is enough push in the state legislature to get a budget passed.
Bourne mentioned how the dire position that Chicago State University among others was in was a large reason why the college funding bill was finally voted on. She also mentioned how school funding is playing a big part in motivating Springfield on passing a state budget.
Representative Bourne mentioned how there has been talk in Springfield over whether school funding for the new budget will come as a standalone issue, or if school funding reform will be included in the new budget. Bourne said how that issue is yet to be determined.
Taylorville Mayor Greg Brotherton was a guest on the WTIM morning show recently. One thing that Mayor Brotherton talked about was the recent closure of the Taylorville library due to mold issues. Brotherton said that it’s unfortunate that the closure needs to happen, but the Library is doing what it needs to do to solve the issue.
Mayor Brotherton also talked about the upcoming Day of Prayer and Mayor’s Prayer Breakfast. Brotherton noted how it’s a wonderful event for all denominations.
The Prayer breakfast again will be going on May 5th at 7 AM at the Taylorville Christian Church.
Maria Shafer, President of the group W.H.A.T. was a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show live from our downtown studios on Friday. Shafer told host Jim Finks a little bit about the group, and what their goal is in the community.
W.H.A.T. host several events around the community. Shafer told Finks about some of those events.
For more details on the golf outing or to sign up, contact the Fox Prairie Golf Course at 459-2805.
Shelbyville Mayor Jeff Johnson was a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show live from our downtown studios on Friday. Host Jim Finks asked Johnson about some of the good things going on in Shelbyville. Johnson talked about how many companies are expanding their presence in Shelbyville, and how that is going to help the community.
The expansion isn’t limited however to just large companies. Johnson mentioned how Shelbyville also has small businesses growing as well.
Johnson also mentioned that there are several other businesses that are also going to be coming to Shelbyville in the near future.
David Cruitt, Chairman of the Shelby Count y Board was a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show live from our downtown studios on Friday. Host Jim Finks asked Cruitt about the Eagle Creek Resort. Cruitt told Finks about some of the problems the Resort has encountered.
Cruitt did say that although the Resort has been in a state of disrepair for the past several years, there is an ongoing effort to restore the building for future use.
The Shelby County Board is hopeful that once the site is restored, that the state will put the site up for bid for potential developers.
Illinois State Comptroller Leslie Geissler Munger Thursday afternoon announced that
the Illinois Student Assistance Commission sent 164 million dollars in MAP Grant vouchers to her office and she turned around the payments immediately.
As a result, Munger says colleges and universities will receive payment to assist the 125,000 college students who rely upon that funding to further their education.
Munger added that this is not a long term solution. The MAP Grant funding that was signed into law earlier this week covers only half of what students were promised this year. Munger applauded the General Assembly and Governor for a strong first step, but she says it's critical that they pass a comprehensive balanced budget.
The Taylorville Fire Department responded to a structural fire caused by lightning late Tuesday afternoon. The home, located at 2408 East Lakeshore Drive received heavy interior and exterior damage. The fire was contained to the roof and inside storage areas on the second floor.
The talking points volleyed back and forth between Governor Bruce Rauner and House Speaker Mike Madigan have been repetitive at times and have left little room for optimism. But in the days after a deal was hammered out to get state funds to cash starved Illinois colleges and universities, the forgotten word of optimism has resurfaced at the Capitol and at least for the moment, the tone has changed. In a visit to Auburn High School, Governor Rauner said he not only wants a deal on what's left of the current fiscal year but the coming months as well...
Rauner says leaderless talks among lawmakers are starting to bear fruit......
If lawmakers have to go to special session, Rauner says he'll cover the 40-thousand dollar a day tab out of his own pocket.
Can a state budget deal be reached this summer? Governor Bruce Rauner says that he has hope that one can be completed by the end of May. And if it would take a special session that he would consider a rather unconventional way of making sure taxpayers aren’t picking up the bill.
Rauner adds that he wants to see the fiscal year budgets for both this current year and the coming FY 17 to get done at the same time.
Senator Dick Durbin is teaming up with California colleague Barbara Boxer on new climate change legislation. While such efforts usually focus on the believed causes of climate change or global warming, Durbin says new legislation would deal with the effects...
The bill calls for the Treasury Department to issue up to $200 million annually in "Climate Change Bonds." Durbin notes Americans concerned about the issue will have a chance to put their money where their mouth is...
The bonds would be similar to ones used during World War II that helped finance the successful war effort.
State Comptroller Leslie Munger has news that should be music to the ears of anxious college students who depend on Monetary Award Program grants. Munger has revealed she received $164 million dollars worth of MAP grant vouchers from the Illinois Student Assistance Commission. Munger says she turned around the payments immediately. 125,000 Illinois college students depend upon help from the MAP grant program to help funding their education. Munger notes the recent higher ed funding deal reached between Governor Rauner and lawmakers isn't a long term solution. The MAP grant funding provided by the deal only represents half of what students were promised this year.
Kim Rodgers, executive director of the Pana Community Hospital Foundation, was a guest on the Thursday NEWSTALK WTIM Morning Show, to talk about ongoing fund raising efforts for a new 3-D Imaging Machine for the hospital. Rodgers said the new machine will benefit patients and doctors alike.
And, Rodgers says this is just one example of how the Pana community has rallied behind the hospital over these many decades.
For more information on the Pana Community Hospital Foundation, contact Rodgers at 562-6340.
Lisa Robinson, Nutrition and Wellness Educator for the University of Illinois Extension Unit 18 which includes the Regional Radio listening area, was a guest on the NEWSTALK WTIM Morning Show Thursday. Robinson gave listeners her background on how she came to Illinois.
And, Robinson says she gets the most questions about things like salt.
Robinson can be reached thru the University of Illinois Extension Christian County office.
The Taylorville Sertoma Club is pledging up to $5000 to help complete the building fund campaign for the Taylorville Food Pantry.
Larry Peterson, president of the local club, says that the Food Pantry has always been a preferred charity for their club.
Peterson added that for years, they have donated selections of frozen meats at different times during the year. When the building campaign was announced, the club knew they wanted to see the new building constructed as soon as possible.
The Reverend Rodney Blomquist, chair of the Taylorville Ministerial Association Food Pantry building fund raising committee, said if the Sertoma $5000 matching challenge is met, then construction could begin this year. The Sertoma Club will match donations up to $5000 received from April 29 through June 30, 2016.
Donations, in any amount, are welcome from service clubs, community organizations, businesses, or individuals. Contributions should be mailed to Building Fund, Taylorville Food Pantry, 223 W. Franklin, Taylorville, IL. 62568.
# # #
Picture: Pastor Blomquist and Larry Peterson holding sign soon to be placed at site of new Food Pantry.
Tornado Warnings were issued for several counties in the Regional Radio listening area early Wednesday evening, as one touchdown and one funnel cloud were reported to the National Weather Service in the Raymond-Nokomis area.
A tornado touched down east of Raymond, and remained on the ground moving towards Morrisonville, between 6:45 and 7:15 Wednesday night, prompting tornado warnings for Montgomery and Christian Counties thru the 7 o'clock hour.
And, a funnel cloud from another severe thunderstorm was spotted west of Nokomis around 7:05.
Christian County Emergency Management Agency Director Mike Crews told Regional Radio News during our live severe weather coverage last night, that the spotters were out with no damage reported.
And, Crews said that his agency asked for the tornado sirens to be activated in the City of Taylorville because of the threat.
Shelby County Emergency Management Agency Director Jared Rowcliffe told Regional Radio News Wednesday night, that he did not receive any reports of damage from the severe weather that went thru his county.
And, likewise for Montgomery County Emergency Management Agency Director Diana Holmes, who told us that their county—including Raymond—did not suffer any damage.
We were unable to reach Fayette County Emergency Management Agency Director Kendra Craig after Wednesday night's severe weather went thru her county.
Heroin addiction and use continues to climb in Illinois and experts say that it cuts across all economic and social barriers. Now a group comprised of doctors, law enforcement and recovering heroin addicts is asking for a law curb addition to prescription pain pills. Pending legislation in the Illinois House would require crush proof pills to be covered by insurance plans in Illinois. Dr. Michael Rock says that when pills produced with O.A.D.P.s, a formulation that prevents pills easily being crushed, are given to patients they can stop many addicts from using the pills to get high.
Cinda Edwards, Sangamon County Coroner says in there is a clear need to mitigate heroin and opioid overdose deaths. Edwards says those abuse deterrent properties helps to stand in the way of potential deaths.
Dr. Michael Rock says adding deterrents to the pills can impact the cycle of abuse and addiction.
A Northern Illinois school district’s superintendent is responding to critics who question the wisdom of a 10-year contract with the teachers union.
Former Palatine School Board President Tim Millar told the Chicago Tribune, “it’s insane” the school board approved the contract because the board can’t anticipate district finances in 10 years.
Palatine area Community Consolidated School District 15 Superintendent Scott Thompson says the contract is a long-term stability package for the community. Millar also questioned having former teachers union president Lisa Nuss in charge of the district’s human resources department. Thompson says Millar’s comments suggest higher-level control has been taken away.
Thompson says contract terms have been ratified but the entire document is not ready to be released. The school district is working feverishly, Thompson says, to finalize the language before the public gets a copy.
Despite the terms being ratified, the contract hasn’t been released to the public. Superintendent Scott Thompson says language is still being finalized.
Republican state Rep. Jeanne Ives says a bill stuck in a legislative committee would have required proposed contracts to be posted online in advance of being approved. Ives says taxpayers deserve to know what’s in a contract, especially with the uncertainty of state funding.
Ives says she will try to attach her measure to additional legislation from the Senate.
The Washington D.C. based Tax Foundation is raising the alarm about a proposed graduated income tax for Illinois.
Tax Foundation Vice President of State Projects Joseph Henchman says they don’t often hold press conferences in state capitals about their reports, but …
The report says if Illinois moves to a graduated rate, the state’s business competitiveness would go from the middle of the pack to near the bottom compared to other states.
Voices for Illinois Children’s, Emily Miller supports the graduated tax. Miller says the proposal provides tax cuts for 99 percent of Illinoisans while at the same time will bring in $1.9 billion of more revenue.
The Tax Foundation says a graduated tax would remove Illinois’ flat rate, something they say is Illinois’ last saving grace for small business.
They won’t go as far as to call it a bait and switch, but the Tax Foundation says a constitutional change would give lawmakers too much tax rate leway.
Miller says it will allow lawmakers to increase tax rates on higher earners. Right now, Miller says, the flat tax means rates would have to change for everyone.
Henchman says if the state’s constitution is changed to allow for a graduated tax, rates could be set at whatever the legislature determines.
Henchman says the proposed graduated tax would hit small businesses hard and would lower the state’s competitiveness in their Business Tax Climate Index.
The proposal remains in the House and requires a constitutional amendment.
The man that held the title of Speaker of the House and 2nd in line to the White House was deemed a serial child molester today by a Federal Judge. Dennis Hastert sat in court today – listening to victim testimony about how he sexually abused them while a coach and teacher at Yorkville High School. Hastert had run afoul of federal banking laws when paying “hush money” to one of his victims. He wasn’t standing trial for child molestation because of the statute of limitations, but is facing 15 months in federal prison. US Attorney Zach Fardon say there are no winners on a day like this, but he’s proud of the work law enforcement did once Hastert reached out the FBI claiming that he was the victim.
Hastert will also face 2 years of supervised release and pay a $250,000 fine that will go to a victim services charity. A bombshell during the testimony was that one of Hastert’s victims was Scott Cross, the brother of state politician Tom Cross. Tom Cross had looked up to Hastert as a political mentor. Scott told of when Hastert molested him in the high school locker room.
US Attorney Zach Fardon says that hopefully today's victims of sexual abuse will see what happened in this cast and be moved to tell someone about it. He says it’s clear no matter how powerful someone is, the truth should come out.
Jack Myers of the Social Security Administration, was a guest on Wednesday morning's NEWSTALK WTIM Morning Show, and shared with listeners a service the U-S Department of the Treasury provides people who want to invest for retirement on their own without using a financial advisor.
You can go to myra-dot-gov for more information.
And, Myers said that people getting ready to retire, can still work and draw Social Security depending on their age and when they were born.
Find out more on the Social Security Administration at socialsecurity-dot-gov.
Carol Chandler of Quad County Home Health and Hospice, and president of Pana Faith-in-Action, was a guest on the NEWSTALK WTIM Morning Show Wednesday morning to promote the upcoming National Day of Prayer service that will be held Thursday, May 5th at 5 in the afternoon in the Kitchell Park Chautauqua in Pana.
Chandler said the Faith-in-Action board wanted to make this event a major focus for the community.
Chandler said several people from various facets of the Pana community will be involved in this year's National Day of Prayer service.
For more information on the May 5th Pana National Day of Prayer service, you can contact Chandler at 562-6380.
The Christian County YMCA launched its annual campaign this week to ensure that everyone in Christian County has access to vital community programs and resources that support youth development, healthy living and social responsibility.
Every day, the Christian County YMCA serves as a gathering place for the community. Kids pour in after school to play, do homework and participate in programs. Seniors meet for water exercise, walking and to connect with one another. Adults and families use the facility for recreation and exercise. To ensure that the Y can continue to provide Christian County residents with life enhancing services, the Christian County YMCA has launched its 31st Annual Strong Kids Sustaining Drive with a goal of raising $40,000.
Executive Director Chris Weittenhiller said the Y is dedicated to nurturing the potential of every child and teen, improving the nation’s health and well-being, and providing support to the local community.
The Christian County YMCA has a policy stating they will not deny services to anyone based on an inability to pay. In 2015 the YMCA provided more than $94,000 in in financial assistance to those who cannot afford to pay for YMCA membership, programs or services, positively impacting 621 individuals in Christian County. The Financial Assistance program is funded by this Sustaining Drive, generous support from the United Way of Christian County and the YMCA Golf Outing which is scheduled for June 10th at Lake Shore Golf Course.
The 2016 campaign has been organized and lead by Sustaining Drive Chairpersons Wayne and Judy Swigert who started the planning process with YMCA staff on March 31st. Collectively they were able to recruit 8 team captains, who each formed a team of campaign volunteers. In total, over 50 volunteers will be helping the YMCA raise funds over the next month to ensure everyone has access to the YMCA.
For more information on the Y's Sustaining Drive, contact Weittenhiller at 287-7271.
Apparently it’s not cheap to hire an athletic director at the University of Illinois. The U of I is expecting to pay close to $200,000 for the search that concluded more than a month ago. The Champaign News Gazette reported the figures Monday. The University spent $11,000 to hold offsite interviews in Indianapolis. But a search firm, Korn Ferry Executive Search will bring in the most money – they are being paid a flat fee of $140,000 and on top of that will receive expenses. The U of I wound up hiring a former Illini football player and alum Josh Whitman.
An effort to get the state’s largest labor union and the Governor together on a new contract has spilled over to hearings at the Labor Relations Board. ASFCME and the Governors’ staff appeared Monday during a hearing on the impasse. An administrative law judge will now issue a decision on whether or not the two parties are really at a standstill. If the judge decides in favor of Rauner he will then be free to dictate the terms of the next union contract to AFSCME members.
The bill that came together late last week to fund parts of higher education is now law. Governor Bruce Rauner signed the bill Monday that will partially fund universities, junior colleges and MAP grants. Rauner says in an email statement that the law is a “first step towards compromise”. Comptroller Leslie Munger said late last week she would have her office prioritize getting those bills paid.
A search to end the mounting suicides of veteran’s will be the focus of a task force next month. Vets’ are committing suicide at a rate of 22 a day and now agencies in Illinois are trying to do what they can to stem the losses. US Marine Alex Brackett wants more ways for those returning home from service to find a way to connect back to their local communities.
The meetings will be held throughout the state. State Rep. Stephanie Kifowit of Aurora wants a number of state agencies to help veterans in need.
State Representative Avery Bourne was a guest on the NEWSTALK WTIM Morning Show Tuesday. She shared how the temporary college funding bill made it thru the General Assembly, after talks had brown down to get it passed.
Bourne added that last week's compromise on the temporary college funding bill, may be a sign that things are changing in Springfield and that a 2017 budget could get passed by the end of May.
The Illinois Legislature is scheduled to be back in session next week after a one week hiatus.
Westwood One talk show host Jim Bohannon, who is heard weeknights from 9 til midnight on NEWSTALK WTIM, was a guest on the WTIM Morning Show today. Bohannon said the Republican Presidential Primary has been like a Super Bowl for political junkies like him, and that it's continuing to play out. Bohannon says he doesn't know if the deal between Ted Cruz and John Kasich to help each other thru the remaining primaries, will block Donald Trump from the nomination.
On the Democratic side, Bohannon says Bernie Sanders is staying in the race all the way to the Convention, to keep Hillary Clinton as far to the left as possible.
Hear Jim's show weeknights from 9 til midnight on NEWSTALK WTIM.
The National Weather Service has issued a severe thunderstorm watch for the entire Regional Radio listening area, until 7 o'clock tonight.
The Weather Service says SCATTERED THUNDERSTORMS WILL BE POSSIBLE THIS AFTERNOON ALONG A
COLD FRONT NEAR I-74 PRESSING SOUTHWARD. IT APPEARS THE BETTER
THREAT FOR ORGANIZED SEVERE WEATHER WILL BE SOUTH OF OUR AREA. THE
THUNDERSTORM CHANCES WILL CONTINUE TONIGHT ACROSS THE AREA. A FEW
OF THE STORMS WILL BE CAPABLE OF PRODUCING SMALL HAIL LATE
Stay tuned to Regional Radio for the latest weather watches and warnings.
The Christian County CEO Board of Directors are very proud of the accomplishments of this first CEO class and are pleased to introduce four of the eight new Christian County businesses.
At MH Photography you will find a never ending supply of creativity. Myah Herbord of Pana is excited to follow her passion and announce the opening of MH Photography. Myah began taking professional photos two years ago and through CEO a business was born. MH Photography features reasonable pricing and a family friendly environment. Seniors, newborns, and families are Myah’s specialty. Contact Myah at email@example.com or MH Photography on Facebook.
Turning old things into new is a favorite hobby of Ben Robinson. Through CEO Ben is opening Ben’s Tinkering in Taylorville, a multi-faceted business. Ben’s Tinkering provides 3D printing services, hydrographics for small items and repurposed-custom items. Ben plans on having cell phone accessories made from a 3D printer available for sale. Contact Ben at firstname.lastname@example.org or Ben’s Tinkering on Facebook.
Sophie Tremblay of Taylorville finds her new business relaxing. Sophie finds making Enchanted Moments aromatherapy bath essentials helps her wind down from a long day. Enchanted Moments will offer varieties of bath essentials; including bath bombs, bath salts, body scrubs, bubble bars, face masks, and soaps. Customers will find the products affordable. Sophie can be contacted at email@example.com, or by phone at (217)761-6546 or find Enchanted Moments on Facebook.
Kyle Kuntzman of Taylorville shares his love and passion for sports led him to Just Jerseys. NFL, MLB and NBA jerseys are available at an affordable price. Kyle says sales the first couple of weeks have been strong and customers are impressed with the quality. Kyle can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or Just Jerseys on Facebook.
The Christian County CEO Trade Show is scheduled for Thursday, May 19th from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at Lincoln Land Community College-Taylorville. The Trade Show is free to attend, open to the public, and a chance to interact with the newest business owners of Christian County.
Pastor Bill Kerns, coordinator for the Missions for Taylorville program, was a guest on the NEWSTALK WTIM Morning Show this week. Kerns shared a history of the program which started in 2010 to assist needy homeowners with repairs.
Kerns said this year, the Missions for Taylorville program volunteers will be working on homes in the community on June Eleventh and September 10th. More help is needed and always appreciated.
Application forms for both volunteers and homeowners can be found at missionsfortaylorville-dot-org.
It was a short monthly meeting of the Taylorville Park Board in the Manners Park Office Monday night.
The board approved the budget for Fiscal Year 2017 that began March First, totaling some 753-thousand dollars. Park Board attorney Quinn Broverman broke the numbers down.
Board president Marlane Miller brought up an incident she witnessed at Jaynes Park last Saturday, and said as a result access to the park from Franklin Street over a curb into the grass, needs to be blocked.
After a short discussion, the Park Board voted unanimously to erect the metal poles and chains in the area where the trucks crossed the curb last Saturday.
It was reported at Monday night's Taylorville Park Board meeting, that their annual I-M-R-F employer contribution rate was going down to 6-point-7-5 percent.
Department heads reported that a lot of mowing has been going on due to recent rains, the Manners Park pool is being readied for another season, and that Manners Park has been abuzz with activity from a variety of organizations including Kids are Kids, and University of Illinois Extension Conservation Day. Recreation Director Bailey Hancock said that over 400 children attended the Conservation Day and the day went very well.
Hancock added that Red Bland Little League games began last Saturday, and that this summer's Camps are also full.
The Taylorville Park Board ended their meeting Monday night, with a short executive session to discuss pending litigation.
THERE WERE ABOUT FOUR AND A HALF DAYS SUITABLE FOR FIELDWORK THIS PAST WEEK…GIVING FARMERS SOME NICE LONG DAYS IN THE FIELDS SAYS CROP STATISTICIAN MARK SCHLEUSENER.
TWO PERCENT OF SOYBEANS, ONE PERCENT OF SORGHUM AND 82 PERCENT OF OATS HAVE BEEN PLANTED. TWO PERCENT OF WINTER WHEAT HAS HEADED. AVERAGE STATEWIDE TOPSOIL MOISTURE STANDS AT EIGHT PERCENT SHORT…75 PERCENT ADEQUATE AND 17 PERCENT SURPLUS.
ADDITIONALLY, SOYBEAN PLANTING HAS BEGUN.
68 PERCENT OF THE WINTER WHEAT CROP IS RATED IN GOOD TO EXCELLENT CONDITION. THE AVERAGE TOPSOIL MOISTURE SUPPLY IS RATED AS EIGHT PERCENT SHORT…75 PERCENT ADEQUATE AND 17 PERCENT SURPLUS.
GOVERNOR BRUCE RAUNER IS SIGNING A 600 MILLION DOLLAR HIGHER EDUCATION FUNDING BILL INTO LAW.
GOVERNOR RAUNER SAYS THE BILL IS A FIRST STEP TOWARD COMPROMISE BETWEEN REPUBLICANS AND DEMOCRATS. IT SENDS OUT MONEY TO STRUGGLING COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES TO GET THEM THROUGH THE NEXT FEW MONTHS AND ALSO INCLUDES SOME MAP GRANT FUNDING. WAUKEGAN REPRESENTATIVE RITA MAYFIELD REMINDED DURING DEBATE THAT THIS IS ONLY A TEMPORARY FIX.
THE MOST IMMEDIATE RELIEF IS PROBABLY TO CHICAGO STATE UNIVERSITY WHICH WAS SLATED TO CLOSE THIS MONTH BUT WILL NOW BE ABLE TO REMAIN OPEN.
SCHOOLS HAVE NOT RECEIVED STATE FUNDING DURING THE 10 MONTH BUDGET STALEMATE AND SENATOR CHAPIN ROSE OF CHAMPAIGN SAYS MORE STILL NEEDS TO BE DONE.
GOVERNOR RAUNER SAYS THIS IS THE FIRST STEP TOWARDS COMPROMISE BUT THAT REFORMS ARE STILL NEEDED TO HELP GROW THE STATE ECONOMY.
Higher education and low income students were able to breathe a little easier on Friday when the state lawmakers passed $550 billion bill to partially fund them. But after nearly a year without a state budget and a mounting stack of overdue bills many in social services are wondering where their money is or when it’s coming. Senator Toi (Toy) Hutchinson a Chicago Heights Democrat wants something done to help those programs that are hanging on by a string.
The House and Senate are taking another break; the two chambers won’t be back in session till May.
Until recently many wouldn’t have spent much time wondering about the safety of their drinking water. That discussion is now happening in many homes because of recent problems in Flint Michigan. US Senator Dick Durbin says the ongoing crisis in Flint pushed him and others in the Senate to find a way to improve water systems. That’s the where he says the True LEADership Act can help a $70 billion bill that he says would be $70 billion well spent. Dr. Peter Kiefer a SIU School of Medicine Pediatrician says there are 3 main ways to ingest lead – contact with contaminated soil, lead paint and water. According to him children are at the most risk for lead poisoning.
Durbin also wants a standard of testing and agreed upon levels of how much lead in one’s blood is an acceptable amount. He says the Department of Housing and Urban Development uses a standard above what the Centers for Disease Control recommends. That leaves individuals and children vulnerable.
Central Illinois Congressman Darin LaHood was asked about several resolutions passed this week concerning the Internal Revenue Service.
Five such resolutions took place on Capitol Hill. LaHood has been an outspoken advocate of reforming the IRS, and just recently grilled its top man on cybersecurity issues.
One of the resolutions specifically focuses on prohibiting IRS employees who were fired for misconduct from being rehired by the IRS.
Another resolution would prohibit the use of funds by the IRS to target U.S. citizens for exercising any right guaranteed under the First Amendment. Another measure would stop the IRS from hiring any new employees until it can certify that no employees are delinquent on their own taxes.
The house also passed a resolution ending bonuses until the IRS improves its customer service record, and a fifth measure would delete the IRS slush fund and re-assert Congressional powers over fees collected by the IRS.
The 4th annual Christian County Conservation Day was held Thursday morning at Manners Park in Taylorville. The event featured 16 different stations manned entirely by volunteers, to teach over 400 3rd and 4th graders from Christian County schools, about conservation and the environment.
Melissa Febus (FEE-bus), Ag in the Classroom Coordinator for Christian County, told Regional Radio News during our live broadcast from the event, that 16 presenters volunteered their time for the day.
Febus said last week's event offered various learning activities for students.
And, Febus complimented the Manners Park staff for their cooperation.
NEWSTALK WTIM's local farm broadcaster Jared White provided live coverage from this year's Christian County Conservation Day Thursday morning.
Taylorville Mayor Greg Brotherton visited the NEWSTALK WTIM Morning Show yesterday. Mayor Brotherton told WTIM listeners that the city is nearing the completion of its Fiscal Year 2017 budget process, with the city's budget in good shape.
And the Taylorville mayor added that as a result of numerous conversations with the State of Illinois on its past due water bill for the Taylorville Prison, some monies have arrived, but more is still owed.
It's not known when the City of Taylorville will be paid the remaining past due balance by the State, on the Prison water bill.
John Heck from McMillan Landscape and Garden Center in Taylorville, was a guest on the NEWSTALK WTIM Morning Show Monday. Heck says most sizes of flowering trees that they offer, can be planted by the do-it-yourself'er.
And, Heck says homeowners should look up when planting trees.
McMillan Landscape and Garden Center is on South Spresser across from the Taylorville airport.
Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner applauded Friday's passage of the stop gap funding bill for Illinois state community colleges and universities.
In a written statement, the Governor said, quote:
"By passing this bipartisan agreement, lawmakers in both chambers put aside political differences to provide emergency assistance for higher education, ensuring universities and community colleges remain open and low-income students can pay for school."
The Governor went on to say that he's hopeful that the General Assembly will build on the bipartisan momentum in the weeks ahead to negotiate a balanced budget with reform for Fiscal Years 2016 and 2017.
Illinois State Comptroller Leslie Munger in a written statement, said that it was heartening that the Governor and legislative leaders have come together to authorize funding college funding. Munger directed her staff to begin processing payments immediately, giving top priority to students and the institutions that are suffering the most.
Munger added that she hopes that the spirit of cooperation she saw in the passage of the college funding, will continue and lead to a comprehensive balanced budget.
HIGHER EDUCATION WILL BE GETTING A LITTLE RELIEF…AND LAWMAKERS SAY SOMETHING NEEDS TO BE DONE TO HELP HUMAN SERVICE PROGRAMS AS WELL.
THE SOCIAL SERVICE PROGRAMS THAT SERVE THE NEEDIEST OF ILLINOISANS HAVE TAKEN A BIG HIT DURING THE BUDGET IMPASSE…AND NEED SOME SORT OF A REPRIEVE SAYS CHICAGO HEIGHTS SENATOR TOI (toy) HUTCHINSON.
COLLEGES GOT A BIT OF A REPRIEVE…AND NOW IT’S SOCIAL SERVICES’ TURN SAYS SENATOR KIMBERLY LIGHTFORD OF WESTCHESTER. SHE NOTES THE SENATE OKAYED A 450 MILLION DOLLAR FUNDING BILL TO HELP KEEP PROGRAMS RUNNING UNTIL A FULL BUDGET IS PASSED.
MUCH LIKE THE HIGHER EDUCATION BILL…THE MONEY WOULD COME FROM A SPECIAL FUND.
ILLINOIS LAWMAKERS ARE SENDING THE GOVERNOR A FUNDING BILL DESIGNED TO GET ILLINOIS COLLEGES THROUGH THE NEXT COUPLE OF MONTHS.
THE 600 MILLION DOLLARS APPROPRIATED IN THE LEGISLATION COMES FROM AN UNUSED SPECIAL FUND. IT PROVIDES MONEY FOR COMMUNITY COLLEGES, UNIVERSITIES AND STUDENT MAP GRANTS AS WELL AS THE ILLINOIS MATH AND SCIENCE ACADEMY. SENATE MINORITY LEADER CHRISTINE RADOGNO SAYS THE PLAN IS A SOLID PIECE OF BIPARTISANSHIP.
THE BILL HAD NEAR UNANIMOUS SUPPORT…AND GOVERNOR RAUNER IS EXPECTED TO SIGN IT INTO LAW.
WHILE THE FUNDING IS ONLY A PORTION OF WHAT SCHOOLS NORMALLY RECEIVE FROM THE STATE, SENATOR DONNE TROTTER SAYS THEY HAVE TO DO WHAT THEY CAN.
THE MONEY WILL COME FROM AN UNUSED SPECIAL STATE FUND. GOVERNOR RAUNER PRAISED LAWMAKERS FOR COMING TOGETHER TO PROVIDE SOME RELIEF FOR THE STATE’S HIGHER EDUCATION SYSTEM AND IS EXPECTED TO SIGN IT INTO LAW.
The 4th annual Christian County Conservation Day was held Thursday morning at Manners Park in Taylorville. The event featured 16 different stations manned entirely by volunteers, to teach over 400 3rd and 4th graders from Christian County schools, about conservation and the environment.
Amanda Cole, Unit 18 Director for University of Illinois Extension, told Regional Radio News during our live broadcast from the event, that local events such as this reduce costs for county schools.
Cole added that events such as this gets children to appreciate the world around them.
NEWSTALK WTIM's local farm broadcaster Jared White provided live coverage from this year's Christian County Conservation Day Thursday morning.
The Taylorville Park Board holds their regular monthly meeting Monday night at 7 at the Manners Park office. Major items on the agenda include an ordinance adopting the annual fiscal year budget starting March First, 2016; reports from department heads; payment of bills; and an executive session with possible action items. Regional Radio News will be there and we'll have a full report on air and on line after the meeting.
The 4th annual Christian County Conservation Day was held Thursday morning at Manners Park in Taylorville. The event featured 16 different stations manned entirely by volunteers, to teach over 400 3rd and 4th graders from Christian County schools, about conservation and the environment.
Manners Park Recreation Director Bailey Hancock told Regional Radio News during our live broadcast from the event, that the entire park was used for this year's event.
Hancock added she has a great staff to maintain the various Taylorville parks.
NEWSTALK WTIM's local farm broadcaster Jared White provided live coverage from this year's Christian County Conservation Day Thursday morning.
Lincoln Land Community College is offering a new certificate program in audio production. The certificate is targeted to students interested in designing and implementing audio production in the home studio environment, as well as lives sound applications of audio production in the professional world. Jason Waddell, Associate Professor of Music at Lincoln Land Community College told Regional Radio News how the certificate program is tied in with current courses offered at LLCC.
Waddell also talked about some of the software students in the program will be using.
Registration for summer and fall classes is now open. For more information on the new audio production certificate program, contact Waddell at 786.2319.
The 4th annual Christian County Conservation Day was held Thursday morning at Manners Park in Taylorville. The event featured 16 different stations manned entirely by volunteers, to teach over 400 3rd and 4th graders from Christian County schools, about conservation and the environment.
University of Illinois Christian County Extension Unit 18 Educator Gary Letterly told Regional Radio News during our live broadcast from the event, that students came from schools across Christian County.
Letterly said students learned everything from bats to recycling.
Letterly said that University of Illinois Extension and other agencies all have a mission to educate the public, and that's why they were part of the event.
And, different stations linked various subject matter about conservation.
NEWSTALK WTIM's local farm broadcaster Jared White, provided live coverage from the event.
Krista Lisser, Public Relations Manager for the Central Illinois Food Bank was a guest on the WTIM morning show Wednesday morning. Lisser talked about how although there are more people suffering from hunger in higher populated areas, it’s the rural towns where the Food Bank sees higher percentages of people suffering from hunger.
Lisser talked about how the Central Illinois Food Bank does distribute food to the needy directly, but the majority of the food is directed to local pantries, who then distribute the food to the needy.
To donate or volunteer with the Central Illinois Food Bank, visit them online at centralilfoodbank.org.
16 students representing the Shelby Electric Cooperative participated in the Illinois Electric and Telephone Cooperatives Youth Day event last week, where students from around the state had the opportunity to visit the state capitol, and meet with legislators and ask them questions on key issues. Member Services and Key Accounts Manager for Shelby Electric Cooperative Heidi Hall told regional radio news more about the event.
State Senator Andy Manar as well as Representative Avery Bourne were two of the legislators who met with the students. Hall told Regional Radio News how the students got to also meet several more of their area representatives, and ask them questions mostly regarding the state budget impasse.
The students also got to see several different attractions in downtown Springfield, including the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum, the old State Capital, as well as the Illinois Supreme Court.
Michelle Wicker, mother of Kenneth Alcala, one of 9 students enrolled in the Christian County CEO Program was a guest on the WTIM Morning Show this morning. Although most of the time parents end up selling the idea of the CEO Program to their children, Wicker told us how it was actually Kenneth who told her about it.
The CEO Program has so far had a significant impact on the students who have taken place in it. Wicker said how for Kenneth, that impact has had a more personal touch, as well as telling us about some of the business ideas Kenneth has come up with.
The program seeks to teach students about all of the values necessary for successful business ownership and entrepreneurial experience. For more information on the Christian County CEO Program visit Christian County CEO dot com.
Missions for Taylorville are looking for volunteers to help maintain and repair residences in Taylorville. Missions for Taylorville Coordinator Pastor Bill Kerns told Regional Radio News what the Missions for Taylorville organization is all about.
Kerns said that although Missions for Taylorville primarily focuses on light maintenance of people’s homes, there is still a demand for skilled volunteers.
Missions for Taylorville’s next planning meeting will be this Thursday at 7 PM at Krieger’s. To volunteer you can pick up the forms at First Presbyterian, First United Methodist, Trinity Lutheran, Bethel Baptist, St. Mary’s Catholic, Taylorville Christian, First Baptist, AME Chapel, or Davis Memorial Christian Church.
Wyatt Hohenstein, Account Manager with Jenner Ag in Taylorville was a guest on the WTIM morning show this morning. Hohenstein shared some of his background and what he’s done during his time at Jenner Ag.
Recently Jenner Ag has expanded into the farm machinery and farm implements dealer world. Hohenstein talked about how this is a new endeavor for Jenner Ag, done in an attempt to build new customer bases and relationships.
Hohenstein mentioned how reaching out to individual customers as opposed to corporations has been an enjoyable experience, allowing him to build new relationships within the community.
The Christian County Board held two meetings last night. The first meeting was a “Committee of the Whole” meeting where the issue of the music that plays from the county courthouse was discussed. Anybody in favor of or against the music had several minutes to speak before the board to state their arguments as to whether the music should or shouldn’t be played at the Courthouse. After, the County Board would take into consideration all arguments and then discuss the sound system from the courthouse as it applied to the time and days the music played, as well as who will operate and oversee the sound system. Taylorville resident and former business owner Chris Biondolino spoke before the county board where he explained why he was against the music being played at the courthouse.
Ed Downs from the Downtown Taylorville Committee also had a chance to address the board. Downs stated that he was in favor of the music being played, and mentioned how the vast majority of the response to the music has been positive.
Ultimately the Christian County Board motioned that the music being played from the speakers at the Courthouse would only be played Monday through Saturday from 9AM until 4PM, with any special events that don’t fall within these times, needing to get approval from the County Board to use the speakers. The County Board also motioned for County Board Chairman Paul Schmitz to have control over the music.
The second meeting of the County Board of the night was the usual County Board meeting. Most of the meeting was simply reviewing and motioning on several items that had been discussed in meetings held since the last County Board meeting, such as opening of a line of credit for the county to temporarily fund the 9-1-1 system until state reimbursements are received. One topic that generated heated discussion was a motion to give several elected officials in the county a raise. The controversy came due to the county currently having a $700,000 budget deficit. County Board Member Ashley Linton commented saying how the County Board needs to take responsibility for that deficit.
The motion did carry to raise the salaries of those county employees. Several other motions were discussed and carried, with the County Board Meeting adjourning at approximately 7:30.
The Taylorville Kiwanis Club held their weekly meeting on Tuesday at the Taylorville Memorial Hospital auditorium.
The local club welcomed several who visited the Taylorville Kiwanis club from 2 Kiwanis Clubs in Decatur. From the Decatur Golden Kiwanis Club came members John Alley, Sharon Cunningham, Dan Sebok, and Gary Goecken. From the Decatur Early Bird Kiwanis Club were Rich Barnett who is the club president, along with Dave Zindel, Chris Phelps, and Chuck Zueck.
Illinois Department of Natural Resources Director and former Illinois State Representative Wayne Rosenthal (center in above picture) was guest speaker at the weekly Taylorville Kiwanis Club meeting. Rosenthal told stories about being a Brigadier General, including a story about a war type simulation flying F4s where he had to eject out of his jet in Gulf Port, MS. Rosenthal said his motto was “Regardless of how bad it is, it could always be worse.”
He also reviewed his history of being a Illinois Representative, and learning the value of working together to accomplish a mission, come to an agreement or at least agree to disagree.
Rosenthal then talked about his position as Director of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. He said his biggest asset is being able to manage people and as he said “how to fix things!”
Rosenthal was introduced by Kiwanis member Will Perkins (right). Bill Kerns (left) presided over the meeting as president of the Kiwanis Club.
The Taylorville Kiwanis Club is part of global organization of volunteers dedicated to improving the world one child and one community at a time. Weekly meetings are held Tuesdays at noon at the Taylorville Memorial Hospital auditorium. For information on the club, go to taylorvillekiwanis.com.
The Greater Taylorville Chamber of Commerce Chillifest Committee held their organizational meeting this week to begin the planning for the 31st annual event October First and 2nd on the Taylorville square.
Chamber C-E-O Patty Hornbuckle told Regional Radio News that a lot of crowd favorites will return for another year.
And, Hornbuckle added the Committee is working on more kids' events for 2016.
The Committee will be meeting monthly for the next several months, then weekly a month before the early October event.
A missing Taylorville teen has been found. The Taylorville Police Department reported to Regional Radio News that 17 year old Rachel Barrish was found Tuesday morning during a traffic stop conducted by Pennsylvania State Police in western Pennsylvania, and is currently in their custody. 44 year old Billie J. Baker, formerly of Taylorville was arrested on an outstanding arrest warrant as well as potential charges by the Pennsylvania State Police. Barrish had been missing for several months, with Taylorville Police stating that they believed that Barrish had run away from home. Arrangements are being made for her return to her family in Taylorville. The investigation into the particulars of the case is still ongoing.
The Christian County Board holds 2 meetings tonight.
The first is a "Committee of the Whole" meeting in the County Board room to discuss the ongoing concerns some County Board members have about the sound system installed some months ago in the Courthouse Clock Tower. The Board wants to discuss the hours and days the music will play, and who will operate and oversee the sound system.
That sound system has been a source of controversy the past several months. While it was donated to the County and installed in the Courthouse Clock Tower, the music playing from it, days and hours it plays, is controlled by the Downtown Taylorville Committee.
Again that "Committee of the Whole" meeting is at 5:30 tonight.
The regular Christian County Board meeting is tonight at 6:30. Major items on the agenda include acting on any items that come out of the 5:30 "Committee of the Whole" meeting, as well as discussing elected officials' salaries, appointments and re-appointments.
Stay tuned to Regional Radio and taylorvilledailynews.com for complete coverage of both meetings.
The Peabody Coal Company filed for bankruptcy last week. Peabody Coal built what ultimately became one of the largest underground mines in the free world, Peabody Mine #10, between Kincaid and Pawnee on the Christian-Sangamon County Line. Executive Director of the Christian County Coal Mine Museum Chuck Martin recently told Regional Radio News a little bit about the history of that mine.
The mine was one of the first “mine to mouth” coal mines. Martin explained what that meant.
For more information on Peabody Mine #10, Martin urged everyone to visit the Christian County Coal Mine Museum located at 118 S. Main St in Taylorville.
The Taylorville City Council met in regular session last night. The meeting began with the voting of approving minutes of several meetings held throughout the past two weeks, with all minutes passing without much discussion. The city council also oversaw the swearing in of three new firefighters to the Taylorville Fire Department. These new officers, Cole Judy, Jacob Kileen, and Nick Zeppet, all swore their Oaths of Office in front of a crowd that included other members of the Taylorville Fire Department, the City Council, Taylorville residents, as well as members of the local media. One topic that generated some discussion during the meeting was the Plan Commission Recommendation of a zoning ordinance for a Firing Range to be located at 115 N Webster. Although the ordinance passed 7-1, Alderman Budd stated that he disagreed that Taylorville needs the firing range.
Another discussed item of the night was the refinancing of several outstanding bonds that the city owes. Mayor Brotherton explained that by refinancing the debt, the city of Taylorville will save over $200,000. Alderman Jones asked if the city would be taking the savings on the payment that the city would have paid otherwise, and apply that total to the principle balance, saving the city even more money overall.
The City Council voted on a motion to allow Taylorville Fire Chief Mike Crews to budget an amount towards the purchase of a new ambulance. Alderman Walters stressed that it was for a new ambulance to replace the existing unit.
The Council discussed and voted on several more motions throughout the meeting, including a motion to bid and advertise a laborer position in the street department, motions to approve several events happening throughout the summer, as well as a motion forward the FY2016/2017 Lake Budget to the finance committee with an additional $50,000 for an additional line item for possible repair of the bike trail trestle. One item of note was the motion to purchase a piece of equipment for the water department, which came to a total of over $86,000. Alderman Vota explained that even though it’s a rather large sum of money for a piece of equipment, the total cost is well worth it in terms of employee safety.
St. Louis Dairy Council Representative Joyce Fikri was a guest on the WTIM Morning Show Monday Morning. Fikri talked about some of the many reasons why we need dairy products in our diets. One of those reasons was the large amounts of protein in dairy products, and why that can help with your diet.
Fikri talked about how it’s important to use the dairy you buy, and to be careful not to let any of it go to waste.
Some of those hints included using milk in your oatmeal instead of water, as well as swapping out the water in a smoothie you make in the morning in favor of milk. For more information on the St. Louis Dairy Council, or for facts on dairy products as well as other information, visit online at stldairycouncil.org.
The Christian County Farm Bureau will be hosting “A Day on the Farm”, a series of tours of local farms in June. Christian County Farm Bureau Manager Melissa McMillan told Regional Radio News Recently what the tours will be all about.
McMillian talked a little bit about how the choice in farms for the tour was to provide a variety of different farming methods than the conventional methods.
The tour is open to everyone who’d like to attend. Stop by 400 West Market Street by May 31st to register or for more information. Seats will be on a first come first pay basis.
Sandy Sullivan, New Loan Officer at Nokomis Savings Bank was a guest on the WTIM Morning show Monday morning. Sullivan spoke a little bit on how her time as an employee at WTIM lead to a position at Landmark Automotive in Taylorville, and how that job switch lead to her discovering a love for finance, that ultimately led to her current position at Nokomis Savings Bank.
Sullivan talked a little bit about her position at Nokomis Savings bank, and said exactly what the job of a New Loan Officer is.
For more information or to talk to Sandy Sullivan about a loan, contact Nokomis Savings Bank at 563-7711, or visit online at nokomissavings.com
Shannon Shallenberger, Principle of Main Street School in Shelbyville was a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show live from our downtown studios on Friday. Host Jim Finks asked Shallenberger about some of the things happening at Main Street School. Shallenberger talked about the preschool screening and what the process is for those screenings.
Shallenberger talked about how the screenings are a team effort, and that even if you missed the initial screening, you can still make an appointment to have your child screened and registered for the fall.
For more information on the Shelbyville School district, call 774-4626, or visit online at shelbyville.k12.il.us.
Vonda McConnell, Office Manager for the Greater Shelbyville Chamber of Commerce was a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show live from our downtown Shelbyville studios on Friday. Host Jim Finks asked McConnell about the Festival of Lights program in Shelbyville, and how it might potentially end. McConnell said how it’s unfortunate how it’s essentially a year round job to maintain the display, done by two people. McConnell also stated that she feels that the people who have been maintaining the display so far have done a great job.
McConnell did say that although there have been many ideas to help save the Festival, the Shelbyville Chamber of Commerce does not handle the festival directly.
For more information on the Shelbyville Festival of Lights, contact Bill Bly at 259-2361, Nathan Nichols at 820-5715, or Janet Nichols at 825-5480.
Rob McCall, Undersheriff of Shelby County, was a guest on the NEWSTALK WTIM Morning Show live from our downtown Shelbyville studios on Friday. Host Jim Finks asked McCall about the Shelby County Sheriffs website, and about some of the things you can find on the site.
Another topic that was discussed was the Crime Stoppers program. McCall told us how the organization is run by a civilian board, with the sheriff’s department providing a law enforcement coordinator to coordinate the efforts between the media, law enforcement agencies, the public, as well as the Crime Stoppers board. McCall explained how you can report a crime to the Crime Stoppers program.
For more information on the Shelby County Sheriff’s department or the Crime Stoppers program, visit online at scso87.org or shelbycountycrimestoppers.com.
Lake Land College is offering three opportunities this summer for educators to learn more about the agricultural industry. Ag Institutes are designed for K-12 educators to learn more about the wide impact agriculture has on our daily lives. Participants will get a chance to gain firsthand knowledge they can share with their students by touring agricultural businesses and farms, meeting with industry professionals, as well as engaging in other hands-on activities. The first portion of Ag Institute will meet June 6-8th from 8AM to 5PM. The second portion will meet June 13-15th from 8AM-5PM. Lunch will be provided for both portions. The third portion of Ag Institute will be a two day intensive institute, which will include an overnight trip to the St. Louis area for a tour of the Missouri Botanical Gardens, local greenhouses, tours of Monsanto, Purina Mills, as well as a visit to the Lock Dam and Danforth Center. Materials, transportation, lunch, and entrance fees will be provided, with hotel and evening meals provided by the participants. For more information or to register, call 234-5087, or go to lakelandcollege.edu/as/ag/institute.
Governor Bruce Rauner announced yesterday that the U.S. Small Business Administration had approved the state’s request for assistance to help people and businesses in Christian and Iroquois counties recover from severe storms and floods that occurred in the area in late December. Patti Thompson, Communications Manager for the Illinois Emergency Management Agency told Regional Radio News what that means for people and businesses in Christian County.
Thompson also said that although the request for assistance was approved for Christian and Iroquois counties, people and businesses from the surrounding counties can still apply for an SBA loan.
To be eligible for an SBA declaration, counties must meet certain requirements. Thompson shared with Regional Radio News, why Christian County met those requirements.
To apply for an SBA loan, an individual or business will have to visit a Disaster Loan Outreach Center. The location of these centers hasn’t currently been determined, but will be announced by the Small Business Administration in the near future.
The Newstalk WTIM People's Bank and Trust Taylorville Students of the Month for April were presented their awards recently. The program recognizes one outstanding student from each of the four classes.
April Students of the Month are senior Donovan Miller, junior Sheyenne Johnson, sophmore Kaylene Phelps, and freshman Cyndee Larson. Lindsay Lopian of People's Bank and Trust was in attendance when the students recieved their plaques.
The New Country WSVS and Family Drug Shelbyville Students of the Month for April were presented their awards recently. The program recognizes one outstanding student from each of the four classes.
The April Students of the Month are senior Jenny Karraker, junior Kary Langan, sophomore Emmalee Storm, and freshman Boone Frederick.Margaret Nees from Family Drug was in attendance when the students received their plaques.
Los Rancheros Mexican Restaurant in Taylorville will be celebrating their 3rd anniversary on April 25th. Los Rancheros General Manager Nester Lopez recently told Regional Radio News what Los Rancheros will be doing to help celebrate the anniversary, and thank the customers who’ve supported them.
Lopez also said that those specials aren’t just for Taylorville residents. Anybody from any of the surrounding communities are welcome to stop by Los Rancheros’ Taylorville location at 201 West Bidwell St on April 25th to join in the celebration.
Taylorville Resident, Activist, and Abuse Survivor Erin Domonosky was a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show Thursday morning. Domonosky told WTIM how she became involved in the Prairie Center Against Sexual Assault’s Walk a Mile In Her Shoes event, as well as promoting April being sexual abuse and prevention awareness month.
Domonsky talked about how speaking at the Walk a Mile In Her Shoes event helped her overcome her experience. She also gave us a little insight into what the event is about, and who it’s designed to help.
The event will take place this Saturday in Springfield. For more information you can call the Prairie Center Against Sexual Assault at 744-2560 or visit online at prairie c-a-s-a dot org.
CEO of The Greater Taylorville Chamber of Commerce Patty Hornbuckle was a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show Thursday morning. One thing that Hornbuckle announced was a special deal concerning the upcoming Chamber of Commerce Banquet Cash Raffle tickets.
Hornbuckle also mentioned how the Chamber of Commerce Banquet will also hold the Awards of Excellence for the community. Some of those awards include the outstanding citizen of the year, boss of the year, and the volunteer of the year. Hornbuckle also told us a little bit about another upcoming event.
Hornbuckle welcomed new members to the chamber of commerce. Those members are Walgreens, as well as Jenner Ag.
Landmark Automotive Group of Springfield has acquired the GMC franchise in Taylorville.
A joint announcement released to Regional Radio News from Landmark CEO Sean Grant and Gordon GMC president Craig Richardson, indicated the sale was completed early this month. Terms were not disclosed.
Gordon's dealer owner Craig Richardson tells Regional Radio News that he will continue a used-car dealership at their existing location, 525 West Spresser Street.
Landmark also has the Chevrolet-GMC-Cadillac dealership at 1531 W. Springfield Road in Taylorville. The acquisition from Gordon includes GMC franchise rights, new car sales, warranty work, service and parts, according to the announcement released by both owners.
The Taylorville Police Department is asking for the public’s help in their efforts to stop the production and distribution of methamphetamine in Taylorville. Members of the Taylorville Police Department had received information regarding a suspect wanted on numerous warrants and charges for retail theft as well as theft of motor fuel at an abandoned trailer in Hillcrest Trailer Park. While at the scene officers detected a strong chemical odor coming from inside the abandoned trailer consistent with the production of methamphetamine. Upon further investigation, components of a methamphetamine lab were discovered inside the abandoned trailer. Christian County Solid Waste assisted in the clean-up of the methamphetamine lab. Two suspects were taken into custody without incident, and have been lodged in the Christian County Correctional Center. The Taylorville Police Department asks anyone with any information relating to the unlawful manufacture or distribution of methamphetamine, or any illegal substance, to contact the Taylorville Police Department at 217-824-2211, or Crimestoppers at 1-800-568-TIPS.
There’s a new exhibit at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum. The exhibit titled “Unfinished Work” will open to the general public this Friday. Spokesman for the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum Christopher Wills told Regional Radio News what that exhibit is all about.
The exhibit will feature many items from Lincoln’s life, most of which have ever been put on display before at the museum. The display will be divided into several categories such as his time as President as well as his assassination. Wills told Regional Radio News about some of the unique items that will be on display.
For more information on the Unfinished Work exhibit, visit the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum online at PresidentLincoln.Illinois.gov.
Superintendent of the Taylorville Community School District Dr. Greggory Fuerstenau was a guest on the WTIM morning show this morning. Dr. Fuerstenau had previously stated that without receiving any state aid funding, the Taylorville Community School District would run out of funds in February. Dr. Fuerstenau informed us about why that would happen.
The state’s budget impasse and school funding issue has been a frustrating set of problems. Dr. Fuerstenau stated how he feels that it’s time for those in Springfield to sit down and solve those problems.
Dr. Fuerstenau also mentioned how the Taylorville School District is focusing on living within its funding means, and said how the state has to figure out a different way of governing within the state as well as improving the state economy.
The Lake Land College Foundation will be hosting the 19th annual golf classic at Meadowview Golf Course in Mattoon on May 27th with registration beginning at 11, with a shotgun start at noon. The fee is $125 per golfer, or $500 per team of four, and that fee includes lunch, 18 holes of golf, cart rental, refreshments, and dinner, with all proceeds will benefit the Lake Land College Foundation. Organizations and individuals who don’t wish to golf can still support the foundation with a $100 donation to the golf classic as a tee sponsor. Prizes will be awarded for low-net and low-gross scores for all male teams, all female teams, and mixed teams. The winners and raffle prizes will be announced at the dinner following the tournament. For more information or to sign up for the event, call 234-5363, or visit lakelandcollege.edu/foundation/golf.
Kirch and Laura Robinson, Parents of Ben Robinson, a Taylorville High School Senior who is one of nine students participating in the Christian County CEO program, were guests on the WTIM morning show Tuesday morning. The Robinson’s talked about how their son Ben jumped at the chance to participate in the CEO Program.
Ben has had a very positive reaction to CEO program, a fact that his parents say wasn’t surprising considering the guidance the program provides.
The program seeks to teach students about all of the values necessary for successful business ownership and entrepreneurial experience. For more information on the Christian County CEO Program visit christiancountyceo.com.
Rachel Miller, Facility Rehab Director at Meadow Manor Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Taylorville was a guest on the WTIM morning show Tuesday morning. Meadow Manor has recently been rated as a 5 star facility. Miller explained exactly what that means.
Meadow Manor is currently the only 5 star rated facility in Taylorville. Miller spoke of the services that Meadow Manor provides, that helps give it that 5 star rating.
For more information on the Meadow Manor Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Taylorville, give them a call at 824-2277 or on the web at meadownursingandrehab.com.
State Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) was a guest on the WTIM morning show Tuesday Morning. One of the items discussed was Senator Manar’s continued work on the State’s school funding issue. Manar mentioned how local communities are putting pressure on the State government to get the issue of school funding resolved.
Although Senator Manar calls for bi-partisan agreement on the school funding issue, he did say how he disagrees with how the governor’s proposed budget allocates educational funds.
Manar said the problem isn’t insurmountable, but it will take a lot of work from both sides of the isle to get a better spending plan.
The Taylorville Library Board called an emergency meeting for tonight regarding a shutdown of the library over mold issues. President of the Board of Trustees for the Taylorville Public Library Gary Merker told Regional Radio News just what brought those mold issues about.
There isn’t a definitive timeframe for when the Library hopes to open its doors to the public again; however Merker did say that the Library wants the process to happen as soon as possible.
Merker stated how the Library made the decision to close so soon because the Library wants to correct this problem as soon as it can.
Over 350 FFA members, County Farm Bureau Managers, as well as FFA advisors from 74 Illinois counties attended the 2016 Illinois Farm Bureau and Affiliates Youth Conference April 4th and 5th at the Embassy Suites in East Peoria. The theme of this year’s conference offered FFA members in their junior year of high school an opportunity for career and personal development. This year’s attendees got the opportunity to visit with representatives about scholarships, internships, leadership programs, and career opportunities from community colleges, universities, agriculture commodity groups, and the Illinois Farm Bureau along with its family of companies at an opportunity fair. The conference also provided a series of breakout sessions that outlines opportunities in agriculture, and provided information about the Illinois Farm Bureau and its family of companies. For more information on the Illinois Farm Bureau and its affiliated companies’ Youth Education program, please visit youth ed dot org.
The Taylorville School Board met in regular session last night. There were several items on the agenda; however one issue that was discussed at length was the continued school funding issue in the State of Illinois. Superintendent Dr. Greggory Fuerstenau mentioned how with the current state budget impasse, the Taylorville School District could see its state aid funding end in July. Dr. Fuerstenau also commented on what that might mean for the Taylorville School District.
Dr. Fuerstenau mentioned that part of the difficulties of this would be that the school is already working on its FY17 budget. Without knowing the figures that the school district would receive in state aid funding, the district doesn’t know exactly what its revenue would be for the coming school year. The question has been asked as to just how far the Taylorville School District can go without receiving any state aid. Dr. Fuerstenau answered that question by saying how the Taylorville School District can survive longer than some, but the real question is whether or not School Districts will receive aid to replenish the money spent to stay open.
Another discussed item on the agenda was the hiring of Lacy Glenn as a Guidance Counselor for Taylorville High School. Board Member Katie Fraley asked what Glenn’s qualifications were to make her a good fit for the position. A Taylorville School District employee in attendance answered Fraley’s question mentioning her work as a guidance counselor in another school district, with Dr. Fuerstenau adding in what the school district was looking for for the position.
Other items on the agenda included consideration of the 2016-2017 custodial bills, consideration of the appointment of the school district’s auditor for the fiscal year ending June 30th, 2016, consideration of Taylorville High School 2016-2017 handbook changes, consideration of the Discipline Committee’s 2016-2017 Discipline Code changes, as well as consideration of the Taylorville High School Summer School Program. All considerations passed without much discussion. The meeting adjourned at approximately 7:58PM.
With $19 billion a year spent on taxpayer-funded Medicaid programs and state-employee health insurance plans, Illinois’ governor hopes to root out waste, fraud and abuse.
Gov. Bruce Rauner says the Health Care Fraud Elimination Task Force, which he created through executive order last Tuesday, will investigate best practices from around the country in an effort to find savings and in turn use that money for other vital services. Rauner says while working to find savings, the 12-member taskforce will also work to ensure the highest integrity of the programs.
The governor couldn’t say specifically how much fraud there could be but put the figure in the hundreds of millions of dollars per year. According to the Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability, a recent audit resulted in the removal of thousands of individuals listed as dependents from the state-employee group insurance plan, saving taxpayers an estimated $32 million.
Late last week President Barack Obama took to a room at the University of Chicago Law School to meet with students and plead the case for his Supreme Court nominee to get a hearing in front of the US Senate. US Senator Dick Durbin say that it’s the wrong for the Republicans to be standing in the way of Merrick Garland; he says in 1988 the Senate Democrats gave the Republicans much more consideration when an opening happened during a lame duck year for then President Ronald Regan.
Durbin say that Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is wrong for standing in the way of a Supreme Court nominee. According to Durbin, the President is still very much within his right to have his choice reviewed for the Supreme Court.
Durbin says if a hearing isn’t held and a justice isn’t nominated until after the elections this will be the longest the court will be without a full bench since the Civil War.
The Shelby County Health Department has received its seasonal supply of the flu vaccine. They will have walk-in Influenza and Pneumonia vaccination clinics for all adults ages 19 and up Monday through Friday from 8AM to 11:30, and 1PM until 3:30, as long as the vaccine is available. The Center for Disease control recommends Pneumonia vaccinations for all people 65 and up, and a booster is required if you were vaccinated before the age of 65. Guidelines recommend routine Influenza vaccination for all people 6 months of age and older. The health department is a Medicare participating provider, and will accept Medicare and Medicaid payment in full for Flu and Pneumonia vaccinations. It is asked that you bring your Medicare and/or Medicaid cards to the clinics. If you’re not covered by Medicare or Medicaid, there is a $45 fee for a quadrivalent Flu vaccination, and $105 for a Pneumonia vaccination.
University of Illinois Extension Master Gardeners Gwen Podeski and Linda Smith were guests on the WTIM morning show Monday morning. Podeski mentioned how the cold weather hasn’t been all bad for gardening, mentioning how her daffodils haven’t ever lasted as long as they have this year. Podeski did say however that some plants don’t take well to the colder weather.
Linda Smith mentioned the University of Illinois Extension’s upcoming plant sale, and some of the things that are available in the sale. Podeski also told us how you can get your own plants involved.
That sale takes place on May 7th. For more information call the University of Illinois extension’s Christian County office at 287-7246.
Director of Community Outreach at Lake Land Community College Chris Strohl spoke with the WTIM morning show Monday morning. One of the subjects being talked about was Lake Land Community College’s adult week event. Strohl told WTIM why Lake Land Community College holds an adult week.
Strohl also relayed to WTIM why it is so important to continue to expand your skills into adulthood.
For more information on adult week contact Lake Land Community College by phone at 234-5253 or on the web at lakelandcollege.edu.
Expect there to be heated debate in Springfield about whether K-12 education should be funded before or after the state’s decades-old funding formula is reformed.
Democratic state Sen. Andy Manar plans to file an amendment to Senate Bill 231 on Wednesday that he says will address the state’s school funding formula, which Gov. Bruce Rauner, leading Republicans and Democrats have all said needs to be changed. Manar says the proposal gets rid of the Chicago block grant, brings pension parity for the Chicago Teachers Pension Fund and drives state resources to high-need, high-poverty districts. One thing the bill doesn't include is more time to study the issue. Sen. Manar has said that he doesn’t think more time is needed.
Rauner said changing the formula will be difficult and any reform shouldn’t be a precursor to fully funding school districts for the coming fiscal year.
It’s on to the House with a measure that would stop the state from trying to recoup housing costs from prison inmates.
Senate Bill 2465 passed the Senate Tuesday 32-19. Chief sponsor Democratic state Sen. Daniel Biss said working to recoup the money costs taxpayers not only by using resources in the courts, but also by limiting individuals’ opportunities outside of prison, which in turn could lead them to reoffend and end up back behind bars.
However, Republican state Sen. Chapin Rose said the state should be able to go after white-collar criminals who may have large bank accounts.
Biss responded that there are already financial penalties associated with violating laws. The measure has been referred to the House Rules Committee.
Illinois has a transportation based economy. Roads, bridges, rail, water and air transportation infrastructure are all essential to our economy. Unfortunately the budget problems in the state for years have prevented adequate funds from being allocated to transportation infrastructure and our roads and bridges are crumbling. Don Schaeffer, Exec Vice President of the Midwest Truckers Association says a planning group out of Chicago has proposed a massive funding proposal.
The CMAP plan, according to Schaeffer, calls for huge hikes in the motor fuel tax and other fees that look too aggressive, but it is a starting point for discussion. It also calls for a an amendment to the state constitution to prohibit Springfield from moving funds from motor fuel taxes to pay other bills, as has been the case recently. Meanwhile, the Midwest Truckers Association is working with other group to come up with their own funding proposals.
One idea worth investigating, says Schaeffer, is going from a per gallon fuel tax to a mileage tax. The technology is there to do that, but it would have to be a national system and there is little interest in Washington right now to pursue that option.
Fairgoers won't be able to party all night long, but they may come close at this year's Illinois State Fair. Legendary rock band KISS has been added to the grandstand lineup August 17th. Illinois Agricultural Department spokeswoman Rebecca Clark had this to say about the announcement.
Clark says the addition of Kiss brings some balance to the grandstand lineup....
Dr. Mark Basco, Board Certified General Surgeon was a guest on the NEWSTALK WTIM Morning Show live from our downtown Shelbyville studios on Friday. Host Jim Finks asked Dr Basco about what risk factors for colorectal cancer people have to consider.
Finks mentioned a statistic he had seen where 1 in 5 people who had developed colorectal cancer had family members who had it as well. Dr Basco said that even though the hereditary factor does play a role in developing the disease, you might still be at risk even if there isn’t a family history.
Dr. also urged throughout the interview that anybody who could be at risk for colorectal cancer, to go get screened for the disease.
The US Army Corp of Engineers at Lake Shelbyville will be hosting a Resident Goose Management open house event at the US Army Corp Lake Shelbyville Project Office on April 13th. The event will take place from 4:00PM until 6:00, and will discuss Canadian Goose hunting opportunities, conflicts, and abatement at Lake Shelbyville. The open house meeting format means you can arrive and leave at any time during the event. The US Army Corp of Engineers, Illinois Department of natural Resources, and USDA Wildlife Services personnel will be at the event, at will be available to discuss any issues, concerns, conflicts, and possible solutions on the Canadian Geese at Lake Shelbyville.
Freddie Fry, Director of the Shelbyville County Office of Tourism was a guest on the NEWSTALK WTIM Morning Show live from our downtown Shelbyville studios on Friday. Host Jim Finks asked Fry about the new guide books the Office of Tourism is offering, and just what kind of information can be found in them.
Host Jim Finks brought up the Spores and Mores event coming up on April 22nd and 23rd. Fry told finks a little bit about some of the details of that event.
That event is on Friday, April 22nd at 5:30 PM at the American Legion Hall in Windsor.
Shelby County Coordinator for Dove Inc. Susie Kensil was a guest on the NEWSTALK WTIM Morning show live from our downtown Shelbyville studios on Friday. Host Jim Finks brought up the state’s current budget impasse. Kensil related how Dove Inc. has been able to overcome the problem.
Another thing Kensil touched on was how Dove Inc. is helping people identify if they are victims of domestic abuse in Shelby County.
For more information or to contact Dove Inc.’s Shelbyville office, call 217-428-6616.
The Taylorville Police Department and Christian County Sherrif’s Department are asking for your help in locating a missing Taylorville teen. 17 year old Rachel Barrish was last seen on February 18th at her home in Taylorville. Rachel is 5 foot 7, weighs about 100 pounds, and has brown hair with blue eyes. If you have seen Rachel, or know of her whereabouts, please contact the Taylorville Police Department at 217-824-2211, the Christian County Sherrif’s Office at 217-824-4961, or CrimeStoppers at 1-800-568-TIPS.
The group calling themselves Citizens for Education held their organizational launch Thursday night, holding a presentation in the Taylorville High School cafeteria. The group’s goal is to secure fair and adequate funding for all of Illinois school districts. The presentation featured several guest speakers including State Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill), as well as Melisa Livingston, a member of Citizens for Education as well as the Funding Illinois Future Coalition. Livingston showcased the Citizens for Education website, and showed a particular feature that will help you send an e-mail to your local representative.
State Senator Andy Manar discussed several issues that Illinois has when distributing funds to schools for education. One issue was how school districts with higher incomes receive more money per student than lower income school districts. He mentioned how towns with low income school districts tend to have higher property tax rates than higher income school districts in an attempt to help offset this difference. Manar also pointed out how this doesn’t usually work, citing how East St. Louis had an abnormally high tax rate, and how their school districts spend less per student than a school district in Arlington Heights with a tax rate a fraction of that of East St. Louis. Manar also mentioned how we haven’t changed the way we spend money on our educational systems in quite some time.
Senator Manar also pointed out the spending numbers for Taylorville Community Schools.
Taylorville Community Unit School District #3 Superintendent Dr. Greggory Fuerstenau also spoke at the event. He pointed out how some school districts such as Taylorville have to worry about cutting things that are much more valuable to their students than other districts.
Citizens for Education member Jenny Moats concluded the event by thanking the guests and everybody who attended. To find out more on Citizens for Education, visit online at citizens for education dot org.
The University of Illinois Extension will be offering a webinar about the Task Force on Consolidation and Unfunded Mandates on April 21st. Community and Economic Development Educator at the University of Illinois Extension Chris Casey told Regional Radio News what that webinar is all about.
The webinar will host two guest speakers. Casey told Regional Radio News a little bit about them.
The April 21st webinar will talk about The Task Force on Consolidation and Unfunded Mandates, which met 17 times and approved 27 recommendations for state actions to remove mandates, and/or improve opportunities for residents and local governments to modernize their governmental structure and reduce costs.
If you have any old junk or antiques you’d like to get rid of and would like to possibly do it on television, now is your chance. History Channel’s American Pickers show will be coming through Illinois and plan to film episodes in the state from the end of April to early May. Some items that they commonly look for include vintage bicycles, toys, unusual radios, advertising, and other unique pieces of memorabilia. If you have any sort of collection of unusual items, and are interested in possibly being a part of the show, you can send in your name, phone number, location, and a description of your collection with pictures to American pickers at cineflix dot com, or call 855-OLD-RUST.
Senator Dick Durbin met with Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland Wednesday. He walked away saying he is only more convinced that Garland is good fit for the nation's high court and deserves a confirmation hearing before the Senate...
Garland previously met with Republican U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk of Illinois, who also says the Senate should hold hearings.
Despite the budget problems in Springfield, this year’s State Fairs in Springfield and DuQuoin will go on as usual. Kevin Gordon, who manages both fairs for the IDOA says fair vendors, despite not getting fully paid for last year’s work, understand the problem and plan to return this year.
Meanwhile the proposed State Fair Foundation will not be raising money for operational costs of the two fairs, but will try and raise private funds to maintain and improve infrastructure at the DuQuoin and Springfield grounds.
Kevin Gordon, state fair manager. A 28 year state employee, Gordon had been on the fair staff for sixteen years before being appointed Manager. Meanwhile, several grandstand acts were announced last Friday, and details of more events, including premium books will be announced fairly soon.
CEO of the Greater Taylorville Chamber of Commerce Patty Hornbuckle sat down with the WTIM morning show this morning. She talked about the upcoming 109th Annual Chamber Banquet scheduled this Friday, May 6th, and what exactly is on the agenda for that banquet.
The banquet has been growing, which has led to a change in venue. The event will now take place at the Moose. Patty relayed to WTIM how there isn’t any love lost however between the Chamber and the old venue, Lakeshore Golf Course.
For more information or for a complete list of events, you can contact the Greater Taylorville Chamber of Commerce at 217-824-4919 or online at Taylorville Chamber dot com.
CNB Bank and Trust Assistant Vice President Susie Montgomery as well as Registered Investment Representative Jeff Morris visited the WTIM Morning Show this morning. Jeff Morris told us how a bank having an Investment Representative just makes sense.
Susie relayed how you can get in contact with Jeff Morris should you be looking to speak with an Investment Representative, with Jeff adding that his availability isn’t confined to bank hours.
For more information or to schedule an appointment with Jeff you can contact the CNB Bank and Trust at 217-287-2265.
Executive Vice President of the Illinois Association of Convenience Stores and Illinois Petroleum Marketers Bill Fleishli testified against State Bill 3011 Wednesday in committee. The bill is aimed to raise the legal age to buy cigarettes from 18 to 21 years old. Bill Fleishli related to Regional Radio News just why he thinks that might not be a good idea.
Fleishli also said how he thinks this bill could negatively impact local businesses in the state.
State Representative Avery Bourne (R-Raymond) is co-sponsoring legislation. House Bill 138 would phase out pensions for the General Assembly. Representative Bourne has also refused a legislative pension, and has also sponsored legislation for term limits, and “no budget, no pay.” Legislative analysts have projected that by the end of June, the five pension systems will need about $131 billion to cover the benefits already earned by public workers, with only $46 billion in expected assets to cover the costs.
The annual Central Illinois Junior First Lego League Expo will be held this Sunday, April 10th from 12:30 until 4:30 PM in the Cass Gymnasium at Lincoln Land Community College in Springfield. Guests are invited to view the work of 30 regional teams of children. The event is designed to spark young children’s curiosity, aim it towards discovering how science and technology impacts the world around them. The Junior First Lego League program is open to children ages 6-9, and features scientific challenges to be explored through research, teamwork, critical thinking, and imagination, as adult coaches guide teams of children to work with LEGO elements and motorized moving parts to build models of ideas and concepts. This year’s challenge will be “Waste Wise”, where the teams find out what making trash really means.
The U.S. Army Corp of Engineers has announced the campground opening dates for campgrounds at Lake Shelbyville. Walleye group camp at Lone Point Recreation Area is now open on a first come, first serve basis. Forrest W. “Bo” Wood Area 5 will also be available for first come, first served camping beginning Thursday, April 7th.
Lake Shelbyville will also be hosting a series of special events over the summer. Lake Shelbyville Assistant Operations Manager Philip Manhardt informed Regional Radio News about several of those events.
Reservations for group camping and individual sites at Lake Shelbyville, U.S. Army Corp of Engineers campgrounds can also be made by calling toll free at 1-877-444-6777, or online at recreation.gov. You can also make reservations in person at the campground fee booth when open.
For more information or to get a copy of the Lake Shelbyville Park Information Guide, contact the Lake Shelbyville Project office at 217-774-3951.
It was graduation week this week for the Christian County LEADership program. CEO of the Greater Taylorville Chamber of Commerce Patty Hornbuckle told Regional Radio news exactly what was on the agenda this week for the program’s participants.
Hornbuckle also said exactly why the program is so important to the community.
For more information about the Christian County LEADership program, contact the Greater Taylorville Chamber of Commerce at (217) 824-4919, or University of Illinois Extension, Christian County Office at (217) 287-7246.
A local group calling themselves Citizens for Education, will hold a public meeting Thursday night at 6:30 at the Taylorville High School cafeteria, to continue to focus on changing the current school state aid formula.
Representatives for the Citizens for Education were guests on the WTIM Morning Show as they were represented by Jenny Moats, parent and nurse for Taylorville Community Unit School District #3, and Melisa Livingston, parent and substitute teacher of the district. Moats told the WTIM Morning Show through Superintendent Dr. Gregg Fuerstenau, they have received help from Teresa Ramos of the Funding Illinois Future Coalition.
Livingston stated the purpose of the event is to introduce CFE and their affiliation with Funding Illinois Future. They have also invited two lawmakers in State Representative Avery Bourne (R-Raymond) of the 95th District and State Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) of the 48th District to come speak at the event.
Again, that public meeting is Thursday night at 6:30 at the Taylorville High School cafeteria.
For more information, go to citizensforeducation.org.
Land of Lincoln Honor Flight will take their first flight of the 2016 season on Tuesday, April 19th. The flight will honor veterans of World War 2, as well as the Korean and Vietnam wars. The flight is a day trip to Washington D.C. to visit the World War 2, Korean, and Vietnam War Memorials. Land of Lincoln Honor Flight Board Member Jon Dust told Regional Radio News what you can do to help welcome these Veterans back home from their trip.
For more information visit landoflincolnhonorflight.org.
The Pana Community Hospital Auxiliary held its annual meeting last Tuesday on March 29th. The Auxiliary approved to donate a check in the amount of $25,000 to go towards the hospital’s 3D Mammography campaign, which aims to raise funds for the hospital to purchase a 3D Mammography machine.
The campaign has raised $136,000 so far towards the foundation’s goal of $200,000 that will go towards the cost of the machine.
Volunteer hours were also discussed, with Shirley DeClerk who is in charge of staffing the volunteer desk reporting that volunteers have donated 1,500 hours of their time covering the front desk. Elections were also held to install new officers for the 2016 year.
On Tuesday, April 5th there was a two vehicle accident at the intersection of E. Park and N. Paw Paw streets in Taylorville shortly before 3PM. Police, Fire, and EMS was dispatched to the scene, with injuries being reported. More information to come.
Ed Legg, Senior Vice Commander of the Taylorville American Legion, is being honored by NEWSTALK WTIM and Central Illinois Smiles Family Dentistry, as this month's “Big Smile for the Community” honoree.
Legg told Regional Radio News that he believes the local American Legion organization is important to honor local veterans.
Legg volunteers to be part of Honor Guard at veterans' funerals, and marching in parades.
Legg is also a deacon at the First Presbyterian Church in Taylorville.
And, Legg has been involved since the inception of the “Missions for Taylorville” organization.
NEWSTALK WTIM and Central Illinois Smiles Family Dentistry congratulates Legg for bringing a “Big Smile for the Community.” To nominate someone, send an e-mail to bigsmile-at-randyradio-dot-com.
A transport truck carrying toxic anhydrous ammonia experienced a malfunction while offloading approximately twenty and a half tons of the product into a storage container at around 5:30 AM Tuesday morning in Stewardson. The malfunction resulted in the release of approximately nineteen tons of anhydrous ammonia into the air. About 200 residents were evacuated from affected areas of the community, with responders from local fire departments and law enforcement agencies going door to door to check on the welfare of anybody who may have not been evacuated. Residents were given the all clear to return to their homes at around 8:30 AM. All indications are that the incident was accidental, and no foul play is suspected. Anyone experiencing symptoms of exposure are encouraged to seek medical attention to be evaluated.
Christian County Coroner Amy Winans related to Regional Radio News late this morning the results of a pair of death investigations Tuesday. 13 year old Zachary Aldridge of Watseka died on January 24th at 10AM at Taylorville Memorial Hospital E.R. His cause of death was determined to be from morphine intoxication, and the manner of death was determined to be accidental.
70 year old Marilyn Christopher of Edinburg died January 3rd at Taylorville Memorial Hospital E.R. Her cause of death was determined to be a sudden cardiac death while driving. Her death was determined to be natural.
Gerry Mahr, Executive Director of the Christian County Senior Citizens Center and Judy Gates, Supervisor of the Golden Circle Nutrition Program were guests on the WTIM Morning Show on Monday. The lack of a state budget has impacted non-profit agencies, and Mahr stated it is the social services agencies that are suffering the most. He also stated a budget may not pass until the November election.
Gates says they are doing their best to keep their services going.
For more information on the Senior Citizens Center, you can stop by at 701 West Adams Street or call 824-4263.
The Lake Land College Adult Week Celebration is scheduled for April 18-22, 2016. During the week, Lake Land will hold two events designed exclusively to invite adult students to explore their opportunities. The first event will be held on the campus in Mattoon on Tuesday, April 19 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. The second event will be held at the Kluthe Center for Higher Education and Technology in Effingham on Thursday, April 21 from 4-6:30 p.m. Chris Strohl, Director of Community Outreach for LLC, told Regional Radio News this is an opportunity for adult students to learn more about the college by registering for classes and going on a tour.
The number of adult students has increased over the years at community colleges, as Strohl noted that more than 40 percent of LLC students are 25 or older.
For more information, contact Strohl at 217-234-5429, or visit lakelandcollege.edu.
Trees Forever, Taylorville Park District, and the University of Illinois Christian County Extension will be hosting a two class series workshop on April 19 and 26 from 6-9 p.m. at the Christian County Extension Auditorium. There is no cost to the class, but free will donations for meals are encouraged. Barb Grabner-Kerns, Field Coordinator for Trees Forever told Regional Radio News, the classes are geared towards edible landscape of growing and caring for fruit and nut trees.
Grabner-Kerns added that plantings at Manners Park will follow the classes starting in May or June and possibly into the fall, as the goal is to make the fruit and nut trees available at the park and in your backyard.
Volunteers are asked to register at TreesForever.org/Edible-Landscapes-Workshop. For more information, contact Grabner-Kerns at 561-1062 or by e-mail at email@example.com.
The Taylorville City Council met in regular session on Monday night, and City Attorney Rocci Romano and Alderman Bruce Jones was absent. The council approved many resolutions and ordinances. One of those that spurred the most discussion was the C.E.F.S. Economic Opportunity Corporation/CIPT Public Transportation Coordination Agreement. Alderman Earl Walters stated it took four or five years to bring public transportation to the county. Alderman Martin Vota looked over the agreement and said he had some concerns and wanted to bring it back to committee for further discussion.
Vota announced a motion to table with Alderman Rob Heberling seconded, but the motion to table failed by a 4-3 count. Mayor Greg Brotherton stated it is paid for by monies already spent, and if it wasn’t spent, it would go somewhere else after a period of time.
A motion was brought up to approve the agreement and it passed 4-3.
In other Taylorville City Council action, the council approved an ordinance of the issuance of sewerage revenue bonds of the City in an aggregate principal amount not to exceed some $3 million for the purpose of defraying the cost of acquiring and constructing improvements to the sewerage of the City. The Council also approved an ordinance of the issuance of sewerage revenue bonds of the City in an aggregate principal amount not to exceed some $1 million for the purpose of defraying the cost of acquiring and constructing improvements to the sewerage system of the City.
The council also approved a motion regarding the eight foot sanitary sewer line from manhole on Battery Specialists property to the manhole on the Taylorville Community Unit School District #3 property at the Pepsi Plant, with the City doing the six foot line from the manhole to the Pepsi Plant building not to exceed $20,000. Alderman Earl Walters stated it was an error that the City made by reversing the sewerage flow during project work four years ago.
Alderman Shawn Burtle questioned the insurance policy of the project and Mayor Greg Brotherton said he will look into it.
In other Taylorville City Council action, during the mayor updates, Mayor Brotherton noted he went to the Jasper, Indiana area to look at Little John Digesters for its usage as a pretreatment system for lift stations in an effort to alleviate the odor from waste generated by the prison. Mayor Greg Brotherton said it is like an aerator system and could cost the City about $100,000 for the Prison, Spillway, Pershing, and Northwest Lift Stations.
Alderman Martin Vota questioned why the bike trail trestle is still closed. Brotherton stated the City of Pana doesn’t have money to fix the trestle, nor do they have the money to hire an engineer. Brotherton noted it’s a possibility to contact IDOT to find out what rules and what leverage to force the City of Pana to do something about fixing the trestle, and may look at other solutions. A motion was also approved to extend the Boyd Dappert Youth Reservation Lease under the existing terms of the Lease Agreement for one year beginning October 3, 2016 to October 3, 2017. The council approved the payment of bills totaling some $400,000 and the meeting adjourned at 7:33 p.m.
According to Sangamon County Coroner, Cinda Edwards, 65 year-old Linda Warmoth-Shelton of Rochester was pronounced deceased at 12:16 Monday morning at Memorial Medical Center. Her car collided with a train at 11th and Division Streets late Sunday night. An autopsy is scheduled in Springfield on Tuesday morning. The Springfield Police Department is handling the crash investigation. There is no further information at this time.
According to Christian County Coroner, Amy Calvert Winans, she conducted two inquests on Wednesday, March 30.
96 year-old Jane Jones of Pana died as a result of sudden fatal cardiac arrhythmia and collapse due to arteriosclerotic cardiovascular disease. Her death was ruled natural. She died on January 4, 2016 in her residence. The Christian County Sheriff’s Office handled the investigation.
46 year-old William Wombles of Taylorville came to his death as a result of methanol intoxication. The coroner’s jury ruled his death to be suicide. Mr. Wombles died on February 13, 2016 at his residence. The Taylorville Police Department handled the investigation.
High winds on Saturday and Sunday caused power outages to customers in the Regional Radio listening area.
The highest winds occurred on Saturday as the National Weather Service in Lincoln forecasted 46 miles per hour wind gusts for the entire Regional Radio listening area on Saturday and remained into the next day. According to the National Weather Service, the Taylorville Municipal Airport recorded a wind gust of 37 miles per hour at 4:35 p.m. on Sunday. Galesburg had the highest wind gust in the region, as a 57 m.p.h. wind gust was recorded at 4:25 p.m. on Sunday.
The Effingham County Cultural Center and Museum Association and Lake Land College will be partnering to offer the 2nd Annual Celebration of Lincoln and His Times. The presentation will take place on the second floor of the Effingham County Courthouse Museum on Thursday, April 14 at 7 p.m. This event is free and open to the public. Doors will open at 6 p.m. to allow attendees the chance to look at the various displays, especially the Lincoln displays. Karen *Kull, Director of the Lake Land College Kluthe Center in Effingham, told Regional Radio News, this year’s program topic is “The Election of 1860”.
Kull mentioned the museum will be displaying a rocking chair that is a replica of the one that Abraham Lincoln was assassinated in, and that survived the Great Chicago Fire of 1871.
For more information, contact Kull at 217-540-3500 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Citizens for Education will be having a launch event in the Taylorville High School cafeteria on Thursday, April 7 at 6:30 p.m., and one downstate lawmaker will be in attendance to give a presentation. State Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) of the 48th District, told Regional Radio News, the meeting is important as there are organizations forming across the state that demanding action to fix the inequitable school funding formula.
Manar has been traveling across the state, giving presentations about the school funding formula. He recently went to the northern part of Chicago and noted school districts in that area have had sizeable reductions.
Manar further stated he commends those that have formed Citizens for Education, and being part of the statewide coalition of Funding Illinois Future.
The National Weather Service Office in Lincoln has released their weather summary for the month of March. The central and southeastern Illinois region witnessed temperatures that were 5-8 degrees above normal, in which caused the growing season to start earlier than usual. Meteorologist Kirk *Huettl, of the National Weather Service in Lincoln, told Regional Radio News that March was like December of last year where it was mild and wet.
The region saw its first taste of severe weather as a low pressure system tracked across central Illinois on March 15, causing supercell thunderstorms to rotate, spawning four tornadoes, with two of them being EF-2 in Peoria and Springfield. Another band of scattered showers and strong storms impacted the region on March 30-31. Huettl says cooler temperatures will reside in early April, then shifting over to warmer temperatures later in the month.
To view the March weather summary, go to weather.gov/lincoln.
Jared Rowcliffe, Shelby County Emergency Management Agency Coordinator, was one of the guests on the WTIM Morning Show on Friday hosted by Jim Finks from the downtown Shelbyville studios. Rowcliffe described there is a grant process that had to be done for the Enhanced 911 system for both Christian and Shelby County. Rowcliffe reported they were done with the grant process before the deadline on Thursday.
Rowcliffe noted there will be 73 different agencies that will be served by the enhanced 911 system between the two counties.
Vonda McConnell, Office Manager for the Greater Shelbyville Chamber of Commerce, was a guest on the WTIM Morning Show from our downtown Shelbyville studios on Friday. The show was hosted by Jim Finks. McConnell described the advantages of being a member of the chamber. Advantages include ribbon cuttings, media exposure, social media, and a weekly e-blast. McConnell stated one thing that stands out to her is constant contact, which has an average of 25%, yet McConnell says they exceed the average.
More information can be found at shelbyvilleillinois.net.
Phil Manhart, Assistant Manager for Lake Shelbyville and Jeremy Logan, Natural Resources Specialist were guests on the WTIM Morning Show on Friday hosted by Jim Finks. One of the topics of discussion was the opening of the campground sites. Manhart said they have five campgrounds and over 600 sites at the lake.
Manhart says cleaning the camp sites is a year-round process.
More information can be found at lakeshelbyville.com.
The Christian County Emergency Management Agency hosted the Elected Officials Training Summit in the Janice Hopper Memorial Auditorium at Taylorville Memorial Hospital. Keynote speakers were Tazewell County Emergency Manager, Dawn Cook and Decatur City Manager, Tim Gleason. Gleason was the City Manager for the community of Washington during the EF-4 tornado outbreak on November 17, 2013. Christian County EMA Director, Mike Crews, told Regional Radio News the Trainers Summit was received well from those in attendance.
Crews said the biggest takeaway from the meeting was the state declaration process.
There were some who were unable to make it and Crews says those who were unable to attend should stop by and caught get up to speed on the FEMA reimbursement process.
Crews reviewed the book, Emergency Preparedness for the Christian County Elected Official, that he authored which contained a summary of the Christian County Operations Plans.
At the Christian County Courthouse on Friday morning, former Kincaid Police Chief, Richard S. Adams, plead guilty to a Class A misdemeanor charge of theft. The Class 3 felony of official misconduct was dismissed in exchange for the guilty plea. He was sentenced to two years of conditional discharge, and was also ordered to pay fines and restitution. He will also have to do 120 hours of community service work.
Adams’ case goes back to 2014 when he was arrested for knowingly using village employees to make repairs to his residence on their village time. Adams was represented by Defense Attorney Aaron Calvert, while Special Prosecutor Charles Zalar presided over the case.
Williamson County native, Judge James “Randy” Moore emerged as the top vote getter by a slight margin during the recent Primary election on March 15. He garnered more than 100,000 votes district-wide, as he is looking forward to traveling the massive district to get out his message of commonsense jurisprudence. Moore says what he brings to the court is the life experience of having children and grandchildren.
Moore further stated a judge makes decisions based from legal training and life experience.
Moore is currently serving as the assigned Justice to the 5th District Appellate Court in Mt. Vernon. The Judge announced his campaign on October 13 for the vacancy created by the retirement of Justice James Wexstten.
Illinois Fifth Judicial Circuit encompasses 37 counties in central and southern Illinois, including Christian, Shelby, Effingham, Montgomery, and Fayette.
Governor Bruce Rauner announced today (Friday) that he has submitted a request for U.S. Small Business Administration Assistance to help people and businesses in Christian and Iroquois counties recover from the severe storms and flooding that impacted the area in late December. Patti Thompson, Communications Manager for the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA), told Regional Radio News, it may be as soon as next week if the request is approved for people and businesses to apply for low-interest, long-term loans.
Thompson noted IEMA will work with FEMA to review additional local government expenses related to the disaster that were recently submitted by eight counties.
The eight counties are Alexander, Calhoun, Cass, Clark, Madison, Monroe, Randolph and St. Clair. The state of Illinois requested federal assistance through FEMA to help people recover from the floods, but that request was denied on March 10.
Patty Hornbuckle, President of the Greater Taylorville Chamber of Commerce, was a guest during “Chamber Chat” on the WTIM Morning Show on Thursday. Hornbuckle and Chris Casey of the University of Illinois Extension were the facilitators of the LEADership Academy. Hornbuckle stated due to the winter storm on February 24, they visited two local businesses which were MBM in Taylorville and GSI in Assumption.
Hornbuckle says those that completed the academy learned the business, political, and community perspectives of Christian County.
A graduation ceremony was held for those that were in the LEADership Academy on Wednesday.
Terri Miller, Publicity and Promotions Specialist of the University of Illinois Extension Unit 18 office, was a guest on the WTIM Morning Show on Thursday. One of the topics Miller talked about was the upcoming Natural Landscapes Symposium that will take place on Saturday April 23 from 8 a.m. to noon at the Montgomery County Extension Office in Hillsboro. Miller says the focus will be on pollinators such as bees, butterflies, and moths.
More information can be found at web.extension.illinois.edu/cjmm/.
Scott Stallman, Associate Vice President of Education and Outreach at Lincoln Land Community College, was a guest on the WTIM Morning Show on Thursday. Community colleges such as LLCC have grown over the years and are affordable. Stallman noted how community tax payer dollars plays a vital role in making education less expensive.
More information about Lincoln Land Community College can be found at llcc.edu.
The Taylorville Community Unit School District #3 will be holding kindergarten registration for the 2016-17 school year on Monday, April 11th from 3:30-7 p.m. at North and Stonington Elementary schools only. Parents are encouraged to register at the school their child will be attending next year. If you currently live in the boundaries of Stonington Elementary School, which includes in town and country residences, your kindergarten child will attend Stonington Elementary. If you live in Taylorville, lake area, Bertinetti, Taylorville country addresses, Mt. Auburn, and Mt. Auburn country addresses, you will register at North.
North Elementary School Principal, Brandi Bruley, told Regional Radio News, if a parent is unsure of which school their child will attend, they can contact any of the elementary school offices or the superintendent’s office.
If parents reside in the Taylorville School District and have a child (or children) who will be 5 years old on or before September 1, 2014, you are encouraged to register. The district will need a copy of the child’s physical/immunization record, a certified birth certificate, and a proof of residency. If you have any of this information available, you are encouraged to bring it to registration. The registration fee can be paid in August, and registration forms will be available at each school.
The Kincaid Baptist Church has established a disaster relief fund under the direction of Reverend Louis Kunz, to provide relief and recovery assistance to the remaining damaged homes. John McClure, who instigated the Kincaid Disaster Relief Fund, told Regional Radio News he decided to start up the fund after FEMA denied the state’s request for federal assistance.
Funds raised from the effort will be managed by the Kincaid Baptist Church Ministry and are 100% tax deductible. The Ministry will only pay contractors for the supplies, as the citizens affected by the flood do not receive money. All donations will go to repairing damages to the homes caused by the flood. Their goal of the fundraising effort is $50,000.
For more information, you can contact Kunz at 217-638-4458 or by e-mail at: email@example.com.
The First National Bank in Taylorville on 322 West Main Cross Street is celebrating their 60th year of business today (Friday). The bank opened up their doors in 1956. Linda Crawford, President of the First National Bank in Taylorville, told Regional Radio News that the bank has went through so many changes in the last 60 years.
The 60th Anniversary could not have come at a better time as Crawford has announced that mobile banking is now in service for their customers. She also mentioned mobile banking is for everyone, especially for those in the younger generation.
Crawford added the app can be found through Apple, Google Play, and Windows. She further stated she thanks all the customers for their continued support and their business.
For more information, you can go to fnbtaylorville.com, or you can call 824-2241, or stop by the customer service area in the bank.