Local News

Victim Dies In Macoupin County Fire

A victim has died from a fire in rural Macoupin County.  Macoupin County Dispatch reported a structure fire on Washer Road in rural Macoupin County at 6:06 AM on January 31st.  It was unknown who was inside.  According to Mount Olive Fire Protection District Chief Donnie Nowell, four firefighters on two engines from U-7 Fire department and four firefighters on an engine and tender from Mt. Olive responded to the fire. 

 

Upon arrival, deputies from the Sheriff’s Office found a mobile home heavily consumed by fire.  After extinguishing the fire, a primary search was conducted and firefighters discovered a deceased victim. The coroner and Office of State Fire Marshal were contacted and at this time, the identity of the victim has not been released. Mt. Olive Fire Protection District, Unit 7 Fire Protection District, Gillespie-Benld Area Ambulance Service, and Macoupin County Sherriff’s Office all responded to the fire. Stay tuned to Regional Radio News for more on this story as we receive it. 
 

State Rep. Halbrook Hosting Virtual Town Hall

State Representative Brad Halbrook hosting a virtual Town Hall this evening. 

He adds you can catch the recording on a streaming application for your phone. 

Rep. Halbrook says that he and four other legislators will discuss the Lame Duck Session. 

He adds that the town hall will also cover the Safe T Act. 

Learn more at rephalbrook.com. He appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show.

Turner Named Chair Of Senate Agriculture Committee

 State Senator Doris Turner will serve as chair of the Senate Agriculture Committee in the 103rd General Assembly.

 

“As a lifelong resident of Springfield, I understand the importance the agriculture industry plays in our daily lives,” said Turner (D-Springfield). “Prioritizing farmers, encouraging students to learn about agriculture and uplifting the industry that puts food on our tables is vital.”

 

Turner served on the Senate Agriculture during the 102nd General Assembly. In December, she was awarded the Jim Guilinger Legislative Award from the Illinois Leadership Council for Agricultural Education in Springfield for her efforts in prioritizing the agriculture industry as a state legislator.

 

Turner previously led legislation to add agricultural sciences as a type of course that may be counted toward the requirement for three years of science in order to gain admission to an Illinois public university, and has been a staunch advocate of agricultural education. She believes it is crucial that today’s youth understand the ever-evolving and expanding agricultural industry with the knowledge gained through a current and progressive agricultural education.

 

“I will work to address the issues and concerns that face Illinois’ farming community,” Turner said. “Throughout Central Illinois and across the state, agriculture has a strong economic impact. I look forward to working with my colleagues in the Senate and stakeholders to better the lives of our farmers.”

 

For a full list of Turner’s committee assignments, click here

WTIM School Spotlight: Cowden-Herrick School District - A Story of Two Communities

Cowden-Herrick School District is a cooperative effort between communities. 

 

Superintendent Seth Schuler explains how it works. 

He says the district is there to assist students when it’s time to transition into a higher stage of learning. 

Schuler adds that none of what his district does is possible without an outstanding staff. 

Schuler says that his district received high praise for educating Grades 1-8. 

Schuler appeared as a guest on the WTIM School Spotlight from Cowden-Herrick School District. 

THS All-State Musicians Perform in Peoria

Taylorville High School had four musicians earn the designation of All-State Musician. Erica Edwards, flute and Mylie Corso, oboe in band and Jay Bliler, piano and Kai Albright, baritone saxophone in jazz band. These students represented THS in Peoria at the annual Illinois Music Education Conference All-State Festival January 25-28.

 

Erica Edwards performed in the ILMEA All State Honor Band directed by renowned band conductor Paula Rider. The ensemble performed Pacem by Robert Spittal, Symphony #3 Queen Mosaic: Mvt. 4 Renaissance du Printemps by Robert Buckley, Burning the Wicker Man by Julie Giroux, Downey Overture by Oscar Navarro and Semper Fidelis by John Philip Sousa.

 

Mylie Corso performed with the ILMEA All-State Band directed by Florida A&M University Director of Bands Shebly Chipman. The ensemble performed Eternal Memoir: Saga of the Lucky Dragon by Hirokazu Fukushima, Where Never Lark or Eagle Flew by James Curnow, Overcome by Bill Locklear and The Victors March by Karl L. King. Jay Bliler and Kai Albright performed with the ILMEA All-State Jazz Band directed by DownBeat Magazine Jazz Education Hall of Fame member Jose Antonio Diaz. The ensemble performed Giddyup! By Rick Hirsch, Cubauza by Michael Philip Mossman, That’s Conrad by Jose Diaz and Blues for Stephanie by John Clayton Jr.

 

These four THS musicians earned the All-State designation through an audition process held statewide back in October 2022. Over 7000 students audition from around the state and around 1200 earn the All-State designation and get to perform at the ILMEA All-State Festival.

Pana Woman Sentenced For Retail Theft

A Pana, Illinois resident was sentenced to prison for retail theft with a prior forgery conviction.  43-year-old Sarah Carnahan of Pana was sentenced to two years in the Illinois Department of Corrections for the offense of retail theft with a prior forgery conviction, a Class 4 felony with a sentencing range of 1-3 years in prison.  She also must pay a total of $3,240 in fines and court costs. 

 

On March 13, 2022, Carnahan took possession of miscellaneous items offered for sale at Walmart in Shelbyville, having a total value of less than $300 without paying the full retail value of the merchandise. An employee of Walmart witnessed Carnahan acting suspicious with two other suspects and alerted the Shelbyville Police Department.  Officer Eric Culberson responded to Walmart.  The Walmart employee then witnessed Carnahan take possession of a backpack offered for sale, place sunglasses and shoes inside, and cover the backpack with her coat.  Carnahan then exited the store.  The Walmart employee asked Carnahan to stop and she ignored him.  Officer Culberson then announced himself and Carnahan sprinted towards her vehicle.  Once apprehended, she confessed to the theft. The approximate value of the stolen items was $150. 
 
Carnahan has a prior 2019 conviction for the offense of forgery for which she received probation in Christian County.  

 

The case was investigated by the Shelbyville Police Department.

Cowden Resident Sentenced For Five Years In IDOC

A Cowden resident has been sentenced to five years in prison for unlawful possession of a stun gun, unlawful possession of methamphetamine, and theft by deception.  Shelby County State’s Attorney Nichole Kroncke announced that 24-year-old Shenandoah Depew of Cowden was sentenced. 

 

The incident took place on April 30th, 2021, as a former deputy employed by the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office executed a traffic stop on a vehicle driven by Depew as she exited McDonald’s parking lot in Shelbyville.  According to police, the deputy directed her to exit the vehicle to effect an arrest on an active arrest warrant.  Depew refused to exit the vehicle, stating the warrant was wrongfully issued and concealed the key to the vehicle in he bra.  A rubber tube containing meth was located during a search and a stun gun.  Depew had a revoked FOID card. 

 

On June 23rd, 2021, Depew knowingly and by deception obtained control over home furnishings offered for sale by Short Furniture, Shelbyville.  The value exceeded $500, a class 3 Felony with a sentencing range of 2-5 years in prison.  Depew purchased furnishings exceeding $3,000 by utilizing a check on a closed account.  The case was investigated by the Shelbyville Police Department.  Depew was sentenced to probation for a felony retail theft in a 2020 Coles County Case.  This is her first prison sentence. 

Taylorville Memorial Foundation Offers Scholarships

There are three scholarship opportunities available through Taylorville Memorial Foundation for 2023.  Local students are encouraged to apply for these various scholarships. The three scholarships are the Carolyn M. Butterfield Trust Nursing Scholarship, the John H. Butterfield Agriscience and Nutrition Scholarship, and the D.r George Ferry Memorial Scholarship. 

 

The Carolyn M. Butterfield Trust Nursing Scholarship is awarded to a student who has graduated from a Christian County High School and is enrolled in a two or four-year college or university.  Applicants must be in or have completed their first year in a nursing program.  The deadline is June 1st. 

 

The John H. Butterfield Agriscience and Nutrition Scholarship is awarded to a student who has graduated from a central Illinois High School with priority for a  Christian County resident.  The applicant should have completed the first year in an agriscience or food nutrition program at a two or four-year college or university.  The deadline is June 1st.  

 

The Dr. George Ferry Memorial Scholarship is awarded each sprin to two Taylorville High School graduates who plan to pursue a health care career.  Raedena Ryan, executive director of the Taylorville Memorial Foundation, says that George Ferry contributed a lifetime of service, dedication, and commitment to his family, his practice, his community, and Taylorville Memorial Hospital. 

 

To view scholarship requirements and find scholarship applications, visit memorial.health/tmf. Completed application packets can be mailed to the Foundation at 201 East Pleasant Street, Taylorville, IL 62568 or email to tmhfoundation@mhsil.com.  For more information, contact the Foundation at 217-707-5271. 
 

Christian County Sheriff Details Sheriff's Association Scholarship

Here’s another reminder for High School seniors to submit applications for scholarships through the Illinois Sheriff’s Association. 

That’s Christian County Sheriff Bruce Kettelkamp. 

 

He says the deadline is March 15th. 

Every applicant must submit an essay on top of their other materials. Sheriff Kettelkamp says that a committee of retired teachers will pick a $500 scholarship winner. 

 

He shared a passage from last year’s winner. 

The Sheriff’s Association will announce the winners in April. Learn more at ilsheriff.org/youth-2.

 

Sheriff Kettelkamp appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show. 

'Soup'-er Bowl Sunday in Windsor, Feb. 12

Superbowl Sunday will features parties everywhere with drinks and food galore. 

 

Stacy Cole wants to invite you to the Windsor Souper Bowl Sunday – a fundraiser where you watch the Superbowl while enjoying soup. 

The event starts at 10:30 a.m. Sunday, February 12th, at the Windsor Community Center. Learn more at lakeshelbyville.com/calendar. 

 

Cole appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show from studios in downtown Shelbyville.

New General Assembly Means New Legislative Districts

With the new General Assembly taking their spots January 11th, the districts have officially shifted due to Census data. 

 

State Representative Brad Halbrook explains how this impacts Central Illinoisans. 

Learn more at rephalbrook.com. He appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show from studios in downtown Shelbyville. 

Craig's Sporting Goods Conviently Located Near Lake Shelbyville

Craig’s Sporting Goods and Family Fun Center in Shelbyville has everything you need for outdoor excursions. 

 

Owner Cheryl Schultz wants you to check out the location convniently located near Lake Shelbyville. 

Schultz likes to give away free stuff. She gave away over $2,500 in merchandise over the weekend. 

 

Learn more on the Craig’s Sporting Goods and Family Fun Center in Shelbyville Facebook page. 

Shelby County Board To Hold Special Meeting To Appoint New State's Attorney

Shelby County Board will meet on January 30th at 7 PM in courtroom A for a special Shelby County Board meeting. The main priority of the meeting will be to fill the position of Shelby County State’s Attorney.  Former Shelby County State’s Attorney Nicole Kroncke announced her resignation in late December Kroncke says that she has accepted a position with the Illinois State’s Attorneys Appellate Prosecutor’s Office, Special Prosecution Unit beginning February 1, 2023.

 

The board will vote on the recommendation for the Republican Central Committee for a new Shelby County State’s Attorney and also request a Judge to take action to fill the position until a new State’s Attorney can take the position full-time. The board will also vote to rescind action taken to approve AFSCME agreement proposal passed by the board and vote to approve the agreement proposal that has been agreed upon by the Shelby County Treasurer. 

4-H Inviting Youth to Join the Ride

Mid-winter is still a great time to sign up for 4-H. 

 

University of Illinois Christian County Youth Development Educator Sara Marten invites all kids ages 8 to 18 to join. 

Marten says 4-H’ers are preparing for the fair season this summer. Public Speaking is already ramping up. 

She invites family members or to observe the project presentations whenever they may happen. 

This is also a good time to think about signing your kid up for Summer Camp. Marten says everyone, not just 4-H members, are welcome to register. 

Learn more at extension.illinois.edu. Marten appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show.

LLCC Taylorville Accepting Enrollment for Summer and College Now

Summer Quarter registration is open for Lincoln Land Community College in Taylorville. 

Director of the Taylorville location Dee Krueger says that the location is adding a success coach. 

Krueger encourages high school students to check out College Now. 

You can even receive college credit for classes in the trades. 

Learn more at llcc.edu. Krueger appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show.

Christian County Sheriff One of Dozens Declaring Assault Weapons Ban Unconstitutional

When the General Assembly passed an Assault Weapons ban in the early January Lame Duck session, over 80 sheriff’s joined together claiming they won’t enforce the law. 

 

One of them, Christian County Sheriff Bruce Kettelkamp, doesn’t mince words. 

The ban prohibits the sale of firearms holding more than 15 rounds, or a long-barrel rifle holding more than ten rounds. If purchased before the bill became law, all owners must register the weapon with their FOID card. 

 

Sheriff Kettelkamp claims there’s no need for this law in Christian County. He says he sees very little gun violence in his jurisdiction. 

Sheriff Kettelkamp says that he believes the law only hurts lawful gun owners. 

He adds that his office will still enforce certain gun laws. 

The Protect Illinois Communities Act is facing legal challenges with over 800 plaintiffs joining in the lawsuit against the new law. 

 

Governor JB Pritzker has called the statewide resistance, “Political Grandstanding.”

 

Sheriff Kettelkamp appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show.

Christian County Ag Group Accepting Applications from High School Seniors for Ag Scholarships

The Christian County Ag Group is again accepting applications from Christian County high school seniors who will be going to college this fall and majoring in an agriculture-related field.

This year, over 33-hundred dollars in scholarship money is available, thanks to a memorial gift from the family of the late Mark Roth who chaired the Christian County Soil and Water Conservation District.

The on-line application form is available HERE.

 

 

Taylorville Kiwanis Hear from Shelby Electric Co-op CEO About Rural Fiber at Weekly Meeting

The Taylorville Kiwanis Club heard about rural wireless and fiber internet from the CEO of Shelby Electric Cooperative at their weekly meeting at the Taylorville Moose Lodge on Tuesday.

 

Josh Shallenberger spoke to Kiwanis members about Shelby Electric’s Power-Net division that provides wireless internet to over 1500 rural homes and businesses in a multi-county area.

 

Shallenberger then showed maps and a proposal to apply for federal and state grants that would allow their Power-Net division to provide what’s called “Fiber to the Premise” or F-T-T-P fiber internet to their service area.  Their efforts to secure funding go back to 2020 and continued thru 2022.  Cost for the project as of March 2022 was some 12-point-8 million dollars.

 

He asked for the Kiwanis Club and other community groups, to submit letters of support for their efforts to bring fiber internet to rural customers in Shelby Electric’s service area.   He added it’s vital for continued economic development growth.

 

The Taylorville Kiwanis Club is part of a 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 Moose Lodge.  For information on the club, go to taylorvillekiwanis.com. 

Late-January Winter Storm Serves Safety Reminders

While the worst of Wednesday’s winter storm is over, it serves as a good reminder to give snow plows plenty of space. 

Illinois Transportation Secretary Omer Osman says when winter conditions hit Central Illinois, workers of IDOT will be out in full force before, during, and after the storm. He adds this requires the public’s cooperation. 

 

Illinois State Police Director Brenden Kelly advises against traveling in winter conditions. He says even going the speed limit can be too fast for some winter storms. He adds that you should give yourself extra time to get where you’re going and give other drivers extra space. 

 

If you must travel, IDOT recommends checking current road conditions at GettingAroundIllinois.com, or follow IDOT on Facebook or Twitter. 

How To Spot Symptoms Of PTSD

PTSD or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder affects more than just veterans. Over 12 million people every year are diagnosed with PTSD. According to the VA 6 out of 100 people will be diagnosed with PTSD in their life. Dr. Ari Lakritz, a clinical psychologist at OSF Healthcare in Alton says that PTSD describes the development of symptoms following a traumatic event, either firsthand or secondhand. PTSD diagnosis can often begin with a triggering event. 

 

 

Those with PTSD may often be easily startled, irritable, and have trouble concentrating. PTSD can appear right away or months later. Treatment can vary widely depending on the person’s needs. Two evidenced-based methods he sees are cognitive processing therapy and prolonged exposure therapy.  

 

Cognitive processing therapy has people challenge or modify their beliefs about trauma.

 

 

Prolonged exposure therapy is different and helps build up exposure to your triggers. Spending time with animals or picking up a new hobby are also options.

 

 

If you feel you have PTSD, make an appointment with a mental health provider. 

IAAF Announces 112th Miss Illinois County Fair Queen

The Illinois Association of Agricultural Fairs held its 112th annual convention at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Springfield last weekend. 

 

Every year, the IAAF names the Miss Illinois County Fair Queen. 

 

This year, 20-year-old Paige Van Dyke of Lewisville took home the 63rd Miss Illinois County Fair Queen crown. She majoring in ag communications with a minor in special education at Oklahoma State University. 

 

Edgar County’s Caroline Smith earned the title of first runner up. Union County’s Avery Osman earned second runner up. 

 

Finalists included Allison Stewart of Macon County, Mackenzie Moyer of Macoupin County, Faith Maxwell of Pana Tri-County, Lauren Phillips of Christian County, and 11 others. 

Christian County Sheriff Offers Scholarship

The Illinois Sheriff’s Association announced that it is awarding over $58,000 in college scholarships throughout the state of Illinois to those students who wish to pursue higher education during the 2023-2024 academic year.  Scholarships will be applied to tuition, books, and fees only.  The student must be enrolled full-time at a certified institution of higher learning within Illinois, full-time online learning is also acceptable.

 

Christian County Sheriff Bruce Kettelkamp says that he will be awarding one $500 scholarship. Applicants must be permanent Illinois residents, scholarships must be utilized at a school of higher learning within Illinois, and students must be full-time during the 2023-2024 school year.

 

Applications are available at the Christian County Sheriff’s Office, or on the ISA Website at https://www.ilsheriff.org/youth-2/ Students must complete the application, answer the essay question, and return all documentation to the Sheriff’s Office by March 15th.  

 

For more information, contact the Christian County Sheriff’s Office, the high school advising center, or your college financial aid office. 

Rejected Vanity Plates for 2022

You can’t have whatever you want for a vanity plate. 

 

Illinois Secretary of State Alexi Giannoulias says the state can and will reject inappropriate vanity plate requests. 

 

In 2022, the Secretary of State’s office rejected nearly 400 requests for vanity and personalized license plates, shot down because the requests were lewd or offensive in nature, or because they were difficult to read. 

 

Secretary Giannoulias says they love creativity, but a small percentage failed to meet the standards of good taste and decency. He adds his office rejected those plates because they violate the state’s vehicle code. 

A small panel in the office’s Vehicle Services Department reviews the license plate requests to prevent offensive language. 

Rejected requests included things like SUCKER, BITEU, DUCKYOU, and other more offensive or illegible plates. 

Shelby Electric Reporting Power Outages Wednesday Morning

In the wake of the snowstorm plowing through central Illinois, Shelby Electric is reporting power outages this morning.  Over 350 people are without power this morning including a big chunk in Pana. Shelby Electric says they are working on restoring power as fast as they can and they have crews working on it this morning. 
 

WTIM School Spotlight: Shelbyville School District Uses Everything it Can to Provide the Best Education Possible

Shelbyville School District believes community support provides a better education experience.

 

Superintendent Shane Schuricht explains how the community benefits the students. 

High School Math Teacher Rachel Banfield says that supplying students opportunities helps give students that experience. 

Middle School Science Teacher Lucas Quast believes non-sports extracurricular activities are just as important as sports. 

Greg Harkins, Physical Education Teacher at Main Street Elementary School, says Shelbyville has the advantage of utilizing a vast outdoor scene to teach students. 

Harkins, Quast, Banfield, and Schuricht appeared as guests on the WTIM School Spotlight from Shelbyville School District. 

Laker Day Fast Approaching

Lake Land College will host Laker Visit Day from 9 a.m. to noon February 20 in the Luther Student Center, giving potential students the opportunity to learn about The Laker Advantage and how it can guide them on the path to success.

 

Attendees will tour campus with a student ambassador, who will share information from a student perspective. Participants will also meet with faculty to learn more about specific programs.

 

Representatives from many services, including Counseling Services, Career Services, Student Accommodations & Mental Health Initiatives, TRIO Student Support Services, Health Services, and more will be available to provide information and answer attendees’ questions.

 

A parent/guardian session will be offered as well to provide information relevant to potential parents or guardians of future Lakers.

 

Associate Dean of enrollment Pam Hartke said.“Attending this event is a great way for anyone who is interested to get a feel for the college and how many excellent resources we offer, I highly encourage anyone who is considering attending or even taking a few classes to come to this event.”

 

For more information or to register, visit lakelandcollege.edu/visit. 

CAT and ERT Arrest Three for Drug Activity

Community Action Team and Emergency Response Team of Christian County executed two search warrants early Monday morning. 

 

Taylorville Police Chief Dwayne Wheeler says the teams responded to separate locations. One on the 900 block of West Vandeveer and another at a retail thrift store on the 100 block of North Washington Street. 

 

Chief Wheeler says the warrants resulted in the arrest of 50 year-old Suzanne Austine of Taylorville for delivery of meth, 38 year-old Jerry Riggs of Taylorville for delivery of meth, possession of meth, and possession with intent to deliver, and Austin Garrett for possession of cannabis between 500 and 2,000 grams with intent to deliver. 

 

He adds that the CAT worked on this investigation for three months and built enough probably cause to obtain the warrants, which State’s Attorney John McWard requested. 

 

Chief Wheeler thanks the citizens who assisted the investigation, and all the agencies that helped. This includes Kincaid Police, Stonington Police, Edinburg Police, Assumption Police, and his own department. 

Senator Turner Hoping For Valentines Cards For Long Time Care Residents

Even though it’s still a few weeks away, State Senator Doris Turner is getting ready for Valentine’s Day.  State Senator Turner is collecting store-bought or handmade cards to deliver to long-term care facility residents for Valentine’s Day. “Seniors are a big part of our community and writing them a note can remind them they’re appreciated,” said Turner (D-Springfield). “Taking time out of our days to do a little act of kindness can go a long way to make someone feel loved this Valentine’s Day.”

 

Turner is collecting store-bought and handmade cards for local seniors. People are encouraged to write kind notes and drop them off or mail them to her district offices, located at 401 S. Spring St. Section F, Room B Springfield, IL 62706, or 1210 S. Jasper St. Decatur, IL 62321. She is collecting cards until Feb. 10 and then will deliver them to local long-term care facilities.

 

People with questions can reach out to Turner’s Springfield office at 217-782-0228 or Decatur office at 217-706-5311.

Villas of Holly Brook in Shelbyville Offers Entertainment Galore

Villas of Holly Brook in Shelbyville offers entertainment to residents.

 

President Nicole Perry says that is a community effort. 

Even the children like to visit the Villas. 

The Villas of Holly Brook love to host theme nights. 

Residents even have access to a movie theater. 

Learn more at the Villas of Holly Brook Facebook. Perry appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show from studios in downtown Shelbyville. 

Keepers of the Arts in Shelbyville Wants to Keep You Informed on Arts Events

The Shelbyville Keepers of the Arts wants to inform residents of area events. 

That’s Carol Kessler, President of the Keepers of the Arts. She’s excited to announce there is now a music studio in the space above Flourishes in downtown Shelbyville. 

Kessler says that the Keepers are celebrating Shelbyville this year. 

Kessler invites you to check out the Keepers of the Arts location. 

Learn more on the Keepers of the Arts at Flourishes Gallery and Studios Facebook.

 

Kessler appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show from studios in downtown Shelbyville.

Taylorville Park Board Holds Monthly Meeting

The Taylorville Park Board met on Monday evening in the Manners Park Dining Hall for their first monthly meeting of 2023. After the opening call to order, pledge and roll call, the board approved minutes from the December 27th board meeting and approved the Treasurer’s Report. 

 

Under new business, the board discussed the process for Annual Employee Reviews. The board determined that the reviews will be voluntary and must be turned in by January 31st to be reviewed.

 

The board then heard from Acting Maintenance Superintendent Ben Dempsey. He said that there were many repairs done in the dining hall after cold weather on Christmas Eve caused damage. 

 

 

The board discussed purchasing a Genie lift and whether they wanted to buy new or used. 

 

 

The Genie is expected to be delivered in September. 

 

The board then heard from Secretary MaryAnn Becker who gave her report, including an update on the new computers purchased for her and Recreation Director Bailey Hancock.

 

 

The board also approved the Payment of Bills from the Finance Committee.

 

The next Park Board meeting is set for February 27th.

Winter Storm Watch Will Be In Effect Tuesday And Wednesday

A Winter Storm Watch will be in effect for a majority of the Regional Radio News Audience.  It is in effect from Tuesday Evening through Wednesday Afternoon.  Heavy snow is possible. Forecasts are expecting 4-6 inches with higher amounts possible.  The Christian County Emergency Management Agency is asking you to plan more time on your commutes and plan on dangerous road conditions.  Locations south of I-70 could receive lower accumulations due to a mix of rain and snow if the storm tracks further north. Continue to monitor Regional Radio News and have a weather radio available especially for Wednesday morning. 

Suspect In Custody After Cemetery Destruction

A suspect is in custody after Tolly Cemetery in Moweaqua received heavy damage from a vehicle. The incident occurred on Friday and Shelby County Sheriff's Office has arrested a suspect. The Shelby County Sheriff's Office thanked Flat Branch Commissioner Brandon Etherton and the community who made several calls concerning the incident. 

 

 

May be an image of nature

 

Two Arrested In Connection To Kincaid/Tovey Burglaries

Kincaid Police have arrested two in connection to multiple burglaries in Kincaid and Tovey. 20-year-old Jaquel D. Pearsall and 20-year-old Mysean D. Burden, both from Springfield were arrested late last week for burglary of a motor vehicle.  Kincaid Police thanked the Springfield Police Department, Sangamon County Sheriff’s Office, the US Marshals, and Taylorville Police for their assistance in locating the suspects.  

Illinois Sheriff's Association Announces Scholarships

The Illinois Sheriff’s Association announced that it is awarding over $58,000 in college scholarships throughout the state of Illinois to those students who wish to pursue higher education during the 2023-2024 academic year.  Scholarships will be applied to tuition, books, and fees only.  The student must be enrolled full-time at a certified institution of higher learning within Illinois, full-time online learning is also acceptable.

 

Shelby County Sheriff, Brian McReynolds says that he will be awarding one $500 scholarship. Applicants must be permanent Illinois residents, scholarships must be utilized at a school of higher learning within Illinois, and students must be full-time during the 2023-2024 school year.

 

Applications are available at the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office at 151 North Morgan Street in Shelbyville, or on the ISA Website at https://www.ilsheriff.org/youth-2/ Students must complete the application, answer the essay question, and return all documentation to the Sheriff’s Office by March 15th.  

 

For more information, contact the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office, the high school advising center, or college financial aid office. 

Judge Announces Candidacy For Fourth Circuit

Associate Judge Douglas Gruenke has announced he will run for the office of Circuit Judge of the Illinois Fourth Judicial Circuit.  The vacancy was created after Michael McHaney was elected to the Fifth District Appellate Court. Gruenke will run in the Republican primary in 2024.  He was appointed as an associate Judge in the Fourth Judicial Circuit in 2021, after serving as the Clinton County State’s Attorney.  

 

Gruenke has presided over court proceedings in all nine counties in the Fourth Judicial Circuit.  “Having the opportunity to conduct court in all nine counties in our circuit has allowed me to meet many wonderful and hardworking people from every corner of the circuit.  It would be a privilege to receive their support for Circuit Judge.”

 

Judge Gruenke is a graduate of Wesclin High School in Trenton, Illinois, he graduated from SIUE and SIU School of Law.  He and his wife call New Baden home near Mascoutah and he has served in many facilities in and around Clinton County.  The Illinois Fourth Judicial Circuit is comprised of Christian, Clinton, Effingham, Fayette, Jasper, Marion, Montgomery, and Shelby Counties. 

Keepers of the Arts Teaching Shelby County History

Keepers of the Arts plans on teaching people history this Spring. 

 

Caroll Kessler, President, says the Keepers of the Arts are teaming up with the Historical and Genealogy Society. 

You can learn more at the Keepers of the Arts at Flourishes Gallery Facebook. Kessler appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show from studios in downtown Shelbyville.

City of Taylorville Hiring Two-Part Time Positions

You could be the City of Taylorville’s newest employee. 

That’s Taylorville Mayor Bruce Barry. He invites you to check out the Taylorville City website, taylorville.net. 

Mayor Barry appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show.

CCYMCA is Hiring

Christian County YMCA is hiring! 

 

Here’s Director Bruce Blanshan.

Blanshan says he’s doing his best to keep employees happy and well rewarded. 

You can learn more at ccymca.org. Blanshan appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show.

Composting: An Easy Way to Reduce Waste

Composting can help you reduce waste while improving soil health. 

 

Master Gardener Kathi Knope says it’s pretty easy to start.

She says you can hold the worms in any container with some depth. 

Learn more at extension.illinois.edu. Knope appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show.

Villas of Holly Brook Shelbyville More Than Assisted Living

Villas of Holly Brook in Shelbyville is more than a community. 

 

Nicole Perry, Executive Director, says that it’s a family. 

Perry adds that Villas of Hollybrook is a skilled care living facility. 

Learn more at the Villas of Holly Brook Facebook. Perry appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show from studios in downtown Shelbyville. 

Cruisin' 98.3 WSVZ Names "The Guess Who" Concert Winner

Cruisin’ 98.3 WSVZ gave away two tickets to see “The Guess Who” when they visit the Effingham Performance Center Sunday, January 29th. 

 

The Winner – Kevin Herron of Findlay. 

Herron shares his favorite “The Guess Who” Song.

Congratulations to Kevin. Cruisin’ 98.3 WSVZ will have another concert giveaway this Spring. 

Shelby County Teacher Arrested On Child Pornography Charges

A Shelbyville teacher has been arrested on multiple charges including possession of child pornography and indecent solicitation of a child.  The Illinois State Police have arrested 29-year-old Hayden Miller, who was employed as a teacher by Shelbyville Community School District.

 

The arrest warrant was issued by Coles County and Miller was taken into custody on January 19th and is currently being held at the Shelby County Jail awaiting extradition to Coles County.

 

The ISP DCI is asking parents of youth who have had inappropriate interactions with Miller to call ISP Zone 5 at 217-278-5000 or the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office at 217-774-3941. 

Macon County Conservation Offering Winter Programming for Children

Macon County Conservation District hopes to keep kids engaged. 

 

Alysia Callison, Program Services Director, says that their home-school programs provide an opportunity to teach children outdoors. 

While you’re visiting the Rock Springs Nature Center, you can pick up the Winter Activities Take Home Kit. 

If you miss January’s kit -  the conservation district offers another kit in February. 

Also, Callison doesn’t want you to miss out on their Maple Syrup creation program next month. 

Again, it’s maconcountyconservation.org/events for more information. Callison appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show.

WTIM School Spotlight: Nokomis School District Takes a Proactive in Approach to Emotional Learning

Nokomis School District wants to negate learning loss of the pandemic. 

 

Superintendent Dr. Scott Doerr says that most of that learning loss is mostly emotional. 

Dr. Doerr thanks his staff for their hard work. 

Elementary School Counselor Darci Harrison describes how she’s helping students adjust to life after a pandemic. 

Jennifer Endsley, Junior High English Teacher, says a change in schedule, and an attitude shift towards giving back to the community, gave students a boost. 

Endlsey, Harrison, and Dr. Doerr appeared as guests on the WTIM School Spotlight from Nokomis School District. 

Taylorville Man Arrested Again On Child Porn Charges

A Taylorville man has been once again arrested for child pornography. 49-year-old Todd England of Taylorville was taken into custody for possession and receipt of child pornography by members of the Taylorville Police Department and Homeland Security Investigators.  England is currently on Federal Supervised Release in the Central District of Illinois for an arrest for child pornography in 2019. England had received probation on that charge. 

 

Taylorville Police thanked Homeland Security for their help in the investigation along with Federal Probation, and the US Attorney’s Office.  

Pana Man Arrested On Child Pornography Charges

A Pana man has been arrested on 11 counts of child pornography.  Billy J. Hulfachor has been arrested and charged with the counts by Christian County State's Attorney John McWard.  Hulfachor is facing a $1,000,000 bond and has his first appearance in court on Friday morning. 

 

According to records, Hulfachor is on the sexual predator list. Hulfachor was previously charged and convicted with aggravated criminal sexual abuse of someone under the age of 13.  He was previously charged in Sangamon County. 

No Narcotics Or Hazardous Material Identified In Graham Correctional Center Incident

All tests came back negative for narcotics and hazardous materials after an incident at Graham Correctional Center.  The incident involved individuals in custody who appeared to be under the influence of an unknown substance. According to Naomi Puzzello, Public Information Officer, with the Illinois Department of Corrections, Multiple staff members had been exposed to the substance and were sent to a local hospital.  The affected individuals in custody received treatment in the facility’s healthcare unit and the Illinois State Police Hazmat Team investigated.  

 

ISP conducted preliminary tests on suspicious substances found on site and the tests all came back negative for narcotics or hazardous materials.  ISP is conducting additional testing on clothing items. The substances were identified as nonhazardous and should not have necessitated the use of NARCAN or required hospitalization.  The nasal spray was acetaminophen and the powder was baby powder.  According to Puzzello, IDOC works diligently to ensure the safety of both incarcerated individuals and employees and worked swiftly to ensure everyone had access to the care they requested.  Everyone involved in this incident has been discharged from the hospital. 

 

The incident is still under investigation. 

Registration Open Now for Starved Rock Bald Eagle Watching Trips

It’s your chance to see bald eagles in their natural habitat. 

 

Macon County Conservation District Program Services Director Alysia Callison says you can tag along for a trip to Starved Rock State Park for the next three weekends. 

She says that you’ll have a chance to check out the Lock and Dam Museum along the way. 

Callison asks that you dress for the conditions. 

Registration for each trip ends the Friday before the Saturday trip. You’ll leave Rock Springs Conservation Center at 9 a.m. The trip is $30 a person. 

Learn more at maconcountyconservation.org/events. Callison appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show.

The Importance Of The Gallbladder

When people think of overall health, gallbladders probably aren’t at the top of the list for many people, but when the gallbladder does have an issue, it can be fairly significant. Dr. Andrei Froehling, an OSF Healthcare general surgeon says that the gallbladder helps digest fatty foods. 

 

 

According to the National Institutes of Health, people over the age of 40, are overweight, have chronic diseases like diabetes, or eat high in fat and cholesterol diets are most at risk for developing gallbladder problems.  Women have a higher risk than men, as estrogen has been shown to increase bile cholesterol.  Gallbladder problems can present in a variety of ways, so it is important to be able to recognize symptoms.

 

 

If someone is experiencing a more chronic gallbladder issue they may experience nausea, vomiting, or increased bloating and flatulence.  Oftentimes, doctors say these symptoms will show up at night. Most people assume they are nothing to be concerned with and think they either have an upset stomach or other gastrointestinal issues but it could be something more serious.

 

 

A common problem that can arise is gallstones.  These are collections of cholesterol, bile pigment, or a combination of the two.  These can form in the gallbladder or within the bile ducts of the liver. Pain can radiate to the shoulder, or cause chest pain and might mimic a heart attack.   

 

 

Doctors urge patients to treat and detect gallbladder issues early.  That can be done by something as simple as just changing your diet.  Talk to your primary care physician if you have any questions. 

Christian County YMCA Packing 2023 with Programming

Christian County YMCA offering a load of programming to start 2023. 

 

Director Bruce Blanshan invites teens to check the ‘Y’ out. 

The ‘Y’ also tries to keep younger kids involved, too. 

As a member, adults have access to a range of exercise programs. 

You can’t forget about swim lessons for all ages. 

Learn more at ccymca.org. Blanshan appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show.

Dudley Smith Farm Winter Meeting Approaching

The Dudley Smith Farm Winter Meeting is fast approaching.

 

Producers can improve herd management by learning latest research on cover crop performance, grazing farms, soil health, and drainage practices during the 2023 Dudley Smith Farm Winter Meeting. The meeting begins at 9:30 a.m. Feb. 7 at the University of Illinois Extension Christian County Office in Taylorville. 

 

Register before Feb. 2 at go.illinois.edu/DSFWinter23. Lunch will be provided. Dudley Smith Farm coordinator Ed Ballard will welcome participants and introduce the day's programs. Evan Schulte, beef producer from Salem, will discuss profitable forage and conservation grazing systems. 

 

Andrew Margenot, University of Illinois crop science assistant professor, will present updated recommendations for phosphorus and potassium tests for Illinois fields. Kristin Greer, U of I crop sciences senior research specialist, will demonstrate new crop rotations for the farm's drainage research.

 

If an accommodation is needed in order to participate, contact Christian County Extension at 217-287-7246. Early requests are strongly encouraged to allow sufficient time to meet your access needs.

Taylorville City Council Approves Committee Reports at Bi-Monthly Meeting

Taylorville City Council met for their second January meeting Tuesday night. 

 

Taylorville Mayor Bruce Barry says that the Aldermen approved Committee Reports. Under Emergency Services, the City Council voted to allow the Fire Department to enroll in the First Net Program to alert citizens in an emergency. 

Mayor Barry says that the council took action on tax issues that allow the city to expand. 

The city approved the Solar Power Purchase Agreement with Renewable Energy Evolution to place solar power panels on the Fire Department roof. This is the same company that placed solar panels powering the water treatment plant. By the way, Mayor Barry says that project is coming along. 

Residents of the 600 to 800 blocks of East Vine Street and North Shawnee Street should rejoice when they hear the city is investing up to $9,500 to investigate drainage problems. 

The next city council meeting is February 6th. Mayor Barry appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show.

Social Security Covers Attorney Fees Related to Social Security

Social Security can assist your attorney fees. 

That’s Public Affairs Specialist Jack Meyers. He says that attorney fee coverage is increasing. 

It’s pretty rare that Social Security raises the coverage amount. 

He invites you to check out ssa.gov for more information. 

Meyers appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show.

Lake Shelbyville Office of Tourism Ready for 2023

The Lake Shelbyville Office of Tourism working on their new visitor’s guide. 

Director Freddie Fry is proud of the photography in the guide. 

Fry says that the guide is just one example of how the office of tourism guides visitors. 

She invites you to check out their event calendar if you want to shake the mid-winter blues.

Learn more at lakeshelbyville.com. Fry appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show.

WTIM School Spotlight: Central A&M Hoping For Successful 2023

Central A&M School District has big goals for 2023. Superintendent Dr. DeAnn Heck says they are making improvements. 

High School Principal Charlie Brown is excited for the upcoming year. 

Middle School Principal Alexis Black says that some of those improvements involve new curriculum the middle school is trying this year. 

Elementary School Principal Courtney Hiler is proud of their programs. 

Hiler, Black, Brown, and Dr. Heck appeared as guests on the WTIM School Spotlight from Central A&M School District. 

Consider Your Seed Options Now

While it’s still cold and dark outside, the Master Gardeners consider this the perfect time to prepare for the upcoming gardening season. 

 

Gwen Podeschi says that this is a great chance to take a look at seed catalogs to see what you want to plant. 

She says she enjoys looking at heirloom plant seeds. 

Podeschi suggests taking your time to consider all the angles. 

On that note, she asks you to consider joining the Master Gardeners for a couple of programs this month. 

Learn more at extension.illinois.edu. Podeschi appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show.

Christian County Board Meets; Approves New Board Member, Approves Animal Control Gate

Christian County Board met on Tuesday evening for their January board meeting. The board approved the hiring of Miranda Langen to Ward 4 to replace Matt Wells, who resigned in December. Bryan Sharp, Christian County Board Chair spoke on the recommendation.

 

 

Langen says she is excited to be on the board and is eager to get a younger vibe on the board. 

 

 

Dr. Chad Anderson was introduced as the new Health Department Director.  Committee reports were discussed.  One of the big motions that was discussed was a new electrical gate that would be installed at Animal Control.  Sherri Craggs, Director of Animal Control, says that the process is long and unsafe right now, as officers, once they find an animal have to take the animal, go get a key, go to animal control, then go drop off the key then they can go back to their patrol.  Craggs says that it is wasting a lot of time that could be saved if the deputies had a keyless entry or a pin code to get in. 

 

The board discussed the motion heavily as the finance committee had taken an earlier no decision on it during the committee report. Mike Specha says that the board had an excess in the budget and it should be fine for it to go through.

 

 

The concern of course was that the gate could also freeze and cause delays for people trying to get in. The board continued to discuss it. When the vote came, the board tied 8-8.  After some discussion over proper procedure, the board voted again, and this time the motion passed 10-6. 

 

The board heard from Jeff Stoner with the EMA who announced he was updating the official information book. 

 

 

The next board meeting is set for Tuesday, February 21st, 2023.

Taylorville School Board Takes Action on North School Gym After Dec. 24th Flooding

Taylorville School Board of Education met for the first time in 2023 at the district office.


Under New Business, extreme cold Dec. 24th burst pipes in the North School gym.  Water flooded the lobby and the gymnasium, causing significant damage to the floors. 

 

Superintendent Dr. Chris Doughery says the damage is internal, and the gym floor requires a complete replacement. 

The board accepted a bid from Stalker Sports Floors for approximately $190,000.

 

This happened under the board's emergency plan, which Dr. Dougherty presented in open session. 

 

Taylorville FFA students Liam Steward, Ethan Belcher, Steven Franklin, and Tucker Winans presented the Tower Plot project. The first-year project reported a profit selling their crop. Profit pays for a variety of FFA programs including the National FFA Convention trip.

 

Advisor Jacob Winans says there's a lot to look forward to.

Advisor Sue Schafer explains how this helps students. 

The board approved the consent agenda, and went over Old Business. This included the second reading and adoption of the IASB Press Plus Policy Updates. 

 

The board members considered Closed Session Minutes for the past six months, and approved the destruction of tapes from Closed Sessions 18 months and older.

 

Maintenance Director Steve Walters gave an update for construction on the Fine Arts and Sports Complex, which will start in March. This could make parking tricky. 

The board did not enter Closed Session. The next School Board meeting is February 21st. 

Christian County Coroner Releases 2022 Numbers

The Christian County Coroner’s Office has released its 2022 statistics.

 

Christian County Coroner Amy Calvert-Winans reported in 2022 the Christian County Coroner’s Office handled 346 deaths. This compares to 383 in 2021.

 

The most notable number of 2022 was that the coroner’s office approved and issued 237 cremations permits. This is up from 211 in 2021. All deaths that occur in Christian County that request cremation must be approved by the coroner of that county.

 

There were five suicides investigated during the calendar year and eight deaths ruled accidental. In 2021, 22 accidental deaths were reported and seven suicides.  

 

“We are still seeing more people dying in their homes who are not under a doctor’s care, or have not been to a doctor lately,” Calvert-Winans said.

 

This results in either obtaining past medical records and or performing autopsies to finalize cause of death.

 

Of the 346 investigated by the Christian County Coroner’s Office, here is a breakdown of the findings:

 

Year

2022

2021

2020

Natural Causes

332

352

322

Accidental

8

22

13

Homicide

0

1

0

Undetermined

1

1

0

Suicide

5

7

4

Cremation Permits*

237

211

184

Total Deaths

346

383

349

 

Cremation Permits not included in total death totals 

 

 

CCYMA Lose to Win Registration Still Open

The Christian County YMCA is still taking applicants for its Lose to Win program. 

That’s director Bruce Blanshan. He adds that you would start midway through the program, but there’s still a lot of time remaining. 

While the Lose to Win program is open to everyone, Blanshan suggests joining the YMCA to reap the rewards.

Blanshan just asks you to give the ‘Y’ a call to participate in the Lose to Win program.

Learn more at ccymca.org. Blanshan appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show.

Golden Apple Extending Accelerator Program Deadline

Golden Apple, a program helping inspire and mentor teachers, has been working hard to address the teacher shortage in Illinois. They have extended their deadline for the Accelerators program to January 31st, 2023. Golden Apple is working on meeting the teacher shortage crisis by helping provide a path to teaching for non-educators with bachelor’s degrees who want to teach.  

 

Illinois has an ongoing teacher shortage as does most states in the US. According to a recent report by the Illinois Association of Regional Superintendents, 88% of school districts reported having a teacher shortage in 2021.  This is up 77% from 2020. 

 

The Accelerators program is a 15-month teacher residency and licensure program that helps speed up the process of getting teachers in areas of need throughout the state.  This program is geared towards those with bachelor’s degrees and they take courses at a partner university .  Accelerators also receive a value of up to $25,000 for education, the majority of which will be paid directly to the institution of higher education. 

 

Golden Apple is also looking for applications for its Scholar’s program.  This program helps high school seniors, as well as freshman and sophomore college students in Illinois who have the determination and drive to teach.  Applications to the Scholars program will be accepted through April 1st, 2023.  

 

Applicants are encouraged to apply at www.goldenapple.org/accelerators and www.goldenapple.org/scholars. 

Gardening with Native Plants

Planting native species is a rewarding experience. 

 

That’s according to Master Gardener Kathi Knope. She encourages you to do your reading. 

She has a couple of recommendations for resources to guide you on your native plants journey. 

Fellow Master Gardner Gwen Podeschi suggests that what you want to plant depends on your definition of a native plant. 

Podeschi and Knope say you could take a look at the Native Plants Society in Springfield for ideas. 

Learn more at extension.illinois.edu. Podeschi and Knope appeared as guests on the WTIM Morning Show.    

Taylorville School Board January Meeting Preview

Taylorville School Board gathers at 6 p.m. Tuesday evening at the District Office Building across from the High School. 

 

The board will hear from visitors, review communications, and approve the Consent Agenda, which includes meeting minutes, approval of CLAIMS, the Treasurer’s Report, overnight trips, and any personnel. 

 

For Old Business, the board will recap its committee reports and conduct a second reading and adoption of the IASB Press Pluss Policy Updates. 

 

Under New Business, the board will consider action on the North School Gym water damage emergency plan, consider the Closed Session Minutes for the past six months, consider the destruction of closed session audio tapes for meetings 18 months and beyond, and hear from the Superintendent.

 

The board may go into a Closed Session. Stay tuned to Regional Radio News for more on this meeting as it develops. 

Christian County Board To Meet Tuesday Evening

There will be a Christian County Board Meeting on Tuesday evening at 6:30 at the Christian County Court House. The County Board will look to fill the resignation of Matt Wells and introduce Dr. Chad Anderson as the new Health Department Director.  The board will hear from the various committees.  The board will discuss zoning, solid waste, highway, animal control, and courthouse and building business. 

 

The board will look at a black diamond solar permit update and hear from the EMA.  The board will go over some ARPA fund requests and discuss updates on the Carbon Capture and Storage, and Wind permit moratorium updates. Finishing up committee reports, the board will examine the future of solid waste and take a look at future planning. 

 

Under new business, the board will resolve a Pana Zoning issue update, a residency exemption for the health department director, and take a look at the EMA Newly Elected Official information with Jeff Stoner. Stay tuned to Regional Radio News for a complete update, following the conclusion of the meeting. 

LLCC Looking For Volunteer Tutors

There will be an informational meeting for interested individuals through LLCC that will help with those who want to become volunteer tutors with the college’s adult education program.  The meeting will be held on January 19th, from 5-5:30 at the Taylorville Public Library at 121 West Vine Street. The session will provide details on the program, training, and requirements.  Volunteers are needed to help adults improve their reading, math, and writing skills.

 

Volunteers must be at least 18 years old with reading and/or math abilities.  Volunteers do not need a teaching degree. LLCC will provide all the training and materials the tutors need, including the books tutors will use with students and a handbook.

 

The time commitment is a minimum of one hour a week, although it can be two or three hours per week.  Times are flexible based on each tutor’s availability.  Tutors primarily work with students Monday through Friday but that can be flexible.  The volunteer tutoring program is made possible through a grant awarded by the Illinois State Library, a division of the Office of the Illinois Secretary of State, using funds designated for literacy.

 

For more information visit www.llcc.edu/adult-education or call 217-786-2752.

Ameren Illinois Prepared For Winter

Ameren Illinois wants customers to know they have taken extra steps to make sure they are doing all they can to keep costs down this winter.  Ameren Illinois has natural gas storage capabilities with 12 underground fields located across Illinois to provide ample supplies and price stability throughout the entire heating season. Steve Underwood, Director of Natural Gas Storage Fields for Ameren Illinois says that they are deep underground.

 

 

Underwood says it’s all about being prepared.

 

 

There is a storage field in Hillsboro and it is massive.

 

 

Ameren is also replacing pipelines to modernize gas lines.

 

 

For more information on Ameren Illinois visit www.ameren.com. 

Shelbyville School District Part of Football Conference Merger

The Central Illinois Conference is merging with the Heart of Illinois Conference for high school football only in 2023. 

 

Shelbyville School District, who is part of the Central Illinois Conference, is part of the merger. Athletic Director Sylas Pogue says this is a great opportunity for Shelbyville and the CIC. 

Pogue appeared as a guest on the Shelbyville WTIM Morning Show. 

What is the Lake Shelbyville Office of Tourism?

What is the Lake Shelbyville Office of Tourism?

 

Director Freddie Fry says that its here to inform area residents of local events at no cost to them. 

Fry encourages you to check out their visitors guide, which you can find in the Lake Shelbyville Office of Tourism office in downtown Shelbyville. 

 

Learn more at lakeshelbyville.com. Fry appeared as a guest on the Shelbyville WTIM Morning Show.

Shelbyville Library Shares With Other Libraries

When you visit the Shelbyville Public Library, you are also visiting other area libraries. 

 

Director Monica Cameron says that’s possible with the SHARE Program. 

Cameron adds that this is a great feature for when you are looking for a specific book and the library can’t find it. You can learn more at shelbyvillelibrary.org. Cameron appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show from studios in downtown Shelbyville.

Pana Hospital Offering Home-Bound Meal Program

Pana Community Hospital offers meals to home-bound patients. 

 

Carol Chandler is the Business Development Director.

Chandler says that the Homebound Meals Program is available for anyone with a doctor’s recommendation. She adds that because many recipients are elderly the program takes health precautions seriously. 

Learn more at panahospital.com. Chandler appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show.

Former Congressman Rodney Davis Finds Work

The former five-term congressman from Taylorville, Rodney Davis, has found a new job. 

 

Davis, who lost the June primary to current congresswoman Mary Miller, has been hired by Cozen O’Connor Public Strategies. 

 

Davis joins the firm as a Managing Director, leveraging his experience in public affairs to provide counseling to the firm’s government relations clients. 

 

Davis served in several leadership positions in Congress. Most recently, he served as a Ranking Member on the Committee of House Administration, Ranking Member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Highways and Transit, and Deputy Whip for Republican Whip Steve Scalise. 

 

Cozen O’Connor is a bipartisan government relations practice representing clients before the federal government. 

Lame-Duck Session Recap

The lame-duck session in the General Assembly last week focused heavily on an assault weapons ban. 

University of Illinois Springfield Professor Emeritus Dr. Kent Redfield says the lame-duck session also gave lawmakers to vote on other issues.

One of the more hot-button, but less covered issues, Illinois lawmakers pushed through a reproductive rights bill. Dr. Redfield says that there are some questions about what the state’s role is as one of the few states that allow abortion in the Midwest. 

Dr. Redfield says that the General Assembly established a fund to mandate employers provide five days of paid time off per year. 

He says that as it is, the assault rifle ban is not unconstitutional – unless the U.S. Supreme Court says it is unconstitutional.

Dr. Redfield appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show.

Taylorville Safe Passage Needs Drivers

Taylorville Safe Passage is looking for volunteers. 

That’s co-coordinator of Safe Passage Denise Evans. She says that it’s a pretty easy task. You just have to have a valid driver’s license and insurance. 

Evans says she desperately needs drivers. 

Safe Passage will pay for your gas, and Evans says that driving is rewarding. 

Learn more on the Safe Passage of Taylorville Illinois Facebook. Evans appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show.

Rosenthal Sworn In As 108th District Representative

Representative Wayne Rosenthal has been sworn in as the new representative of the 108th District for the 103rd General Assembly of the State of Illinois.  Rosenthal previously spent time in the house from 2011-2015. Previously, Rosenthal had spent time as the Director of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources from 2015-2019. Rosenthal says he is excited to serve.

 

 

Rosenthal has spent time in the Illinois Air National Guard and the Air Force. He earned a bachelor’s degree in math from Sangamon State University and served on the Lincoln Land Community College Board of Trustees since 2009.

 

Rosenthal and his wife Marcia celebrated their golden wedding anniversary last year and operates his family farm with his three sons.  Rosenthal has three grandsons and three granddaughters.  The 108th House District is made up of all of Menard County, and parts of Christian, Macoupin, Montgomery, and Sangamon Counties.  For more information visit www.reprosenthal.com or contact Rep. Rosenthal at Rosenthal@ilhousegop.org. 

Decatur Man Arrested For Taylorville Break-In

A Decatur man was arrested in Charleston after a Taylorville break-in. On January 8th, 2023 at 4:36 AM, police received a call from a citizen that someone was pounding on their door when they heard a crashing noise. Taylorville Police responded to a house on the 1300 block of Market Street. Officers noticed that the door had been kicked in.  Police secured the residence and saw the garage door was open.  

 

Police discovered that a 2012 Cadillac had been stolen.  The citizen had a doorbell camera that captured the incident.  Taylorville Officers identified 23-year-old Jameer S. Scott from Decatur and contacted other agencies to look for the vehicle.

 

Charleston police would arrest Scott several hours later. The subject was taken to Cole County where he is currently being held. Charleston Police have charges against Scott as well.  Taylorville Police learned that Scott is currently on parole and Christian County States Attorney John McWard has approved several charges against Scott. Scott will be transferred to Christian County Correctional Center.

 

Taylorville Police Department Police Chief Dwayne Wheeler says that he is happy no one was hurt in the incident and that the situation could have been worse. He also urged all patients to be prepared and praised the citizen for having excellent video surveillance and a well-secured door. 

LLCC Hosting Upcoming Information Session

Taylorville area high school students and their parents/guardians are invited to attend an upcoming information session.  Lincoln Land Community College is hosting a College Now program.  The information session will be offered twice on Wednesday, January 18th and Wednesday, February 1st. The sessions will be held at LLCC in Taylorville at 5 PM at 800 South Spresser Street. 

 

The College Now program allows high school students who are at least 16 years old and in good acemic standing to earn college credit by taking afternoon classes at LLCC-Taylorville during their normal school day. 

 

Registration and more information are available at www.llcc.edu/taylorville or by calling 217-786-2754. 

Illinois Deer Donation Program Looking For Donations

Hunters still have time to donate to the Illinois Deer Donation Program.  With the 2022-2023 hunting season coming to an end on January 15th, the University of Illinois is looking for shotgun or muzzleloader hunters in Effingham, Shelby and other counties to take advantage of the late-winter season January 13-15th. 

 

Hunters will not pay processing fees for donated deer taken to meat processors in Mattoon, Moweaqua, Louisville, Sainte Marie, and Mode.  Ground venison is shared with food pantries in 12 counties including Macon, Moultrie, Shelby, and Effingham. 

 

Illinois Deer Donation Program is funded in part by the Health Equity Achieved Together Project, a multi-disciplinary collaboration with the University of Illinois Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education.

 

For more information on the University of Illinois Extension Nutrition program, contact Michelle Fombelle at mfombell@iillinois.edu. 

Multiple Sheriff's Offices Call Assault Rifle Ban Unconstitutional

Multiple central Illinois Sheriff's have said they will not enforce registration of assault rifles after Governor JB Pritzker signed the assault bill into law.  The law bans the sale of assault rifles, but anyone that owns an assault rifle must register their weapon with the state. In press releases sent out by Sheriff’s from over 40 counties including Christian, Sangamon, Montgomery, Macoupin, Shelby, Moultrie, Fayette, and Dewitt have said they will not enforce it. 

 

The press release has been pretty standard among the multiple Sheriff’s Offices. The press release indicates that they believe HB5471 is a clear violation of the 2nd Amendment to the US Constitution. They also indicate that neither they nor their officers will be proactively checking to ensure that lawful gun owners register their weapons with the State, nor will they be arresting or housing law-abiding individuals that have been arrested solely with non-compliance of this act, without a warrant, court order, or circumstance that deems that person a threat to safety. 

 

The Illinois Sheriff's Association supported the decision saying, "The Illinois Sheriffs’ Association (ISA) is extremely disappointed in the passage and enactment of HB 5471, that further regulates and limits the purchase of a variety of weapons for lawful gun owners. The ISA has opposed this legislation throughout its development and remains opposed to the bill as passed by the General Assembly and signed by the Governor.  We, as a representative of chief law enforcement officials throughout Illinois, are very concerned and disturbed by the ongoing and escalating violence throughout our State and Country.  We are always supportive of new tools, techniques and laws that assist us in preventing and holding accountable those that wage efforts of harm and violence on others. However, this new law does not do that.  We will continue to advocate on behalf of Sheriffs and the law-abiding citizens throughout Illinois."

 

Stay tuned to Regional Radio News for more on this story as it develops. To see Christian County's click here

New Minority Floor For General Assembly

There is a new minority floor leader for the General Assembly. 

 

As the 103rd, General Assembly gets underway in Springfield, State Senator Steve McClure (R-Springfield) has been named Floor Leader for the Republican caucus.

 

“It is a tremendous responsibility to be tasked with presenting the Republican perspective during debates in the chamber and an honor to be asked to serve in this important position by my colleagues,” said McClure.

 

In addition to his duties as Floor Leader, Senator McClure has also been named as Assistant Republican Leader to new Minority Leader John Curran. McClure, a native of Springfield, previously served as the Assistant Floor Leader under former Minority Leader Dan McConchie in the 102nd General Assembly.

 

“Senator McClure is a bright and promising rising star in the Illinois Senate,” said Leader Curran. “I have full confidence in his ability to serve as the voice of our caucus on important issues that we will take up in the Senate.”

 

Senator McClure previously represented the 50th District in the Senate. Due to the recent redistricting process, he is now serving as the Senator for the 54th District and was sworn in on January 11th.

 

“It’s a distinct honor to be once again sworn in as a member of the Illinois State Senate. I look forward to continuing my work toward bringing accountability and transparency to state government, helping to keep our communities safe, and working with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to advance common-sense solutions. I am especially excited to spend more time in the new areas that I now have the honor of representing in Springfield.”

 

McClure, a former prosecutor, has focused much of his efforts in the General Assembly on criminal justice and public safety issues, from working to protect DCFS employees to protecting children from convicted predators.

WTIM School Spotlight: Kincaid-South Fork Puts Students First

Kincaid-South Fork School District wants to give students the tools to succeed. 

That’s Superintendent Chris Clark. He attributes a lot of that drive to his teachers. 

Clark is proud of his district’s ability to teach kids technology. 

Kincaid-South Fork is making improvements to its buildings to better serve students. 

Clark appeared as a guest on the WTIM School Spotlight. 

Representative Bourne Thanks Constituents

State Representative Avery Bourne is wrapping up her time in the house and she says that she is honored to have been given the opportunity to represent the people of her district. Below you can find her press release that she issued thanking the constituents of the 95th Legislative District.

 

“As my service in the Illinois House comes to a close, I would like to express my heartfelt thanks.  It has been an honor of a lifetime to serve you and be your voice in Springfield for the past eight years.  Illinoisans have seen many changes big and small over the past 8 years-Speaker Madigan is gone and indicted, leadership term limits have passed in the House, we have stronger ethics laws, a new education funding formula that prioritizes sending taxpayer dollars to students who need it most, and we have begun fixing roads and bridges at the state and local levels.

 

However many of the big challenges for our state remain.  Illinois is one of the highest taxed states in the nation, our pension funds remain in trouble, politicians continue to abuse the public’s trust, and progressive policies have pushed out businesses and families.

 

Though I am leaving my service in the General Assembly, I like you, know theimportance of staying engaged.  Even in these last few days, I’ve spoken out against and voted against radical bills in the Illinois House that increase lawmaker pay, require a gun registry for law abiding gun owners, expand the ability for non-doctors to perform surgical abortions, and take away local control for siting wind and solar projects.  

 

Many of you throughout the years have encouraged me to keep up the fight.  Today, let me do the same.  Please stay vigilant.  Stay engaged.  Get to know your elected officials and share with them how policies impact you, your job, your family, and your community.

 

Getting to know families, small business owners, leaders, and students, and spending time in your communities has been a great honor. Thank you for your generosity in sharing your time, your experience, your support, and your perspective.  I look forward to seeing you in this new year!”

 

Representative Avery Bourne joined the House in February of 2015. 

Pana Community Hospital Promoting Transport Program

Pana Community Hospital’s Transport program can give you a ride to and from your medical provider. 

That’s Business Development Director Carol Chandler. She adds that the service is free for PCH patients. 

Chandler wants you to know the Transport Program is available for more than just medical appointments. 

Those who have used the Transport have found great value in its availability. 

Learn more at panahospital.com. Chandler appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show.

4H Workshop Donates Blankets

The 4-H Youth Leadership Team hosted a Christian County Community Service Workshop on November 21st at the Christian County Extension Office. The Christian County 4-H Youth Leadership Team and 4-H members in the county donated fleece material to make blankets.  Local youth participants helped make tie blankets and we recently donated them to Taylorville Memorial Foundation. The blankets will be given to patients at the hospital.

 

If you are interested in learning more about joining 4-H or the 4-H Youth Leadership Team, please contact Alexis by emailing amcdo6@illinois.edu or calling the Christian County Extension Office at 217-287-7246. 

 

The Illinois Extension leads public outreach for University of Illinois by translating research into action plans that allow Illinois families, businesses, and community leaders to solve problems, make informed decisions, and adapt to changes and opportunities. 

Safe Passage Holding Informational Meeting at 6 P.M.

Taylorville Safe Passage hosting its first public meeting at the Taylorville Municipal Building meeting room at 6 p.m. 

 

Co-Coordinator Denise Evans says that Police Chief Dwayne Wheeler will speak and discuss substance abuse awareness and bullying. 

You might think bullying deserves its own section, and you might be right. However, Evans hopes this discussion will focus on how bullying can lead to substance abuse. 

Evans says that she’s trying her hardest to let everyone know about Safe Passage. 

Safe Passage is always expanding when they are able. A Jacksonville hospital recently reached out to Evans to set up a similar program. 

Again, that informational meeting is at 6 p.m. in the downstairs meeting room of the Taylorville Municipal Building. 

 

Learn more on the Safe Passage of Taylorville Illinois Facebook. Evans appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show.

Senator Turner Hoping To Expand Liquor Delivery

Liquor delivery services would expand under a new measure from State Senator Doris Turner that passed the Senate on Monday.  Senator Turner says bars and restaurants are the backbone of communities and they bring a uniqueness to the neighborhood.  “We are continuously working to strengthen our local economies, and expanding liquor delivery services is a great way to do that.”

 

Senate Bill 1001 would eliminate state and local fees for liquor delivery throughout Illinois.  Additionally, it brings parity for liquor delivery between home-rule and non-home rule municipalities to regulate liquor delivery. 

 

The Turner-backed measure would lower licensing fees for wineries to $750 if renewed online and $900 for initial or non-online certification.  Under a law passed in 2021, the fees were raised to $1,200 if renewed online and $1,500 for initial licenses and non-online.  Senator Turner says it’s a win-win for all. 

 

Senate Bill 1001 passed the Senate with bipartisan support.

Missing Macoupin Man Found

A missing Macoupin man who went missing has been found. 72 year old Craig Winter had a condition that placed him in danger.  Winter has been located in Henderson  county Illinois alive and is being checked by EMT according to the Macoupin County Sheriff's Office. 

Lake Shelbyville Army Corps of Engineers Hiring

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Lake Shelbyville area is hiring. 

 

Natural Resource Specialist Brock Key says that they are looking for college students and recent graduates. 

There are a variety of positions available. 

If you aren’t looking for employment, then the Corps is looking for volunteers. 

Key says that the Corps searches for basic qualifications. 

Learn more when you click on the link in this story at taylorvilledailynews.com. Key appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show.

Illinois House Passes Abortion Legislation

Late last week, the Illinois House of Representatives passed legislation to support abortion rights in the state. In a vote of 67-41, the House passed SB1534.  House Republicans spoke out about the bill concerned over some of the things the bill allows.  Outgoing State Representative Avery Bourne says that the bill goes against what most Illinoisans want. 


 

Representative Bourne says that she is concerned that parents will be left in the unknown when it comes to their children’s health. 

 

 

The concern from Republicans is that it’s not safe despite assurances that it is. 

 

 

The bill will require Illinois insurance plans to cover gender affirming medication to be covered without copay or deductible to any person without age restrictions and no requirement for parental notification.  

 

Representative Kelly Cassidy of Chicago and Planned Parenthood Spokesperson Brigid Leahy say that this is a safe haven. 

 

 

The bill is now with the Senate for approval. 

WTIM School Spotlight: Taylorville Junior High Offering Social Emotional Learning

Taylorville Junior High School teaching children Social Emotional Learning or SEL. 

 

SEL Counselor Ashley Whitehead says it’s about helping children balance their lives. 

SEL Interventionist Doug Bowsher says his job is to teach children how to develop skills benefiting their day-to-day lives. 

Whitehead says that managing a struggling child can come down to showing the child a different outlook. 

Bowsher says that it’s always nice to hear former students tell him how much SEL helped. 

Bowsher and Whithead appeared as guests on the WTIM School Spotlight from the Taylorville School District Office building. 

Suessie's In Taylorville Named Business Of The Month

The Miller Media Group along with BNG Administrative Services are recognizing a local business every month for their “Business of the Month.” This month Suessie’s Resale, at 216 South Main in Taylorville. The business, run by Becky Adcock and her daughter Co-owner Hailey Adcock were recognized for their hard work recently. The ladies were recognized with a certificate from Becky Edwards. Becky says it started off as a consignment shop.


 

Adcock says that she would like to expand in 2023.

 

 

She also says that she was very excited to be named Business of the Month.

 

 

Suessie’s Resale can be found on Facebook at “Suessie’s Resale UBNA.”  Give them a call at  (877) 372-1970.

 

 

 

Macoupin County Sheriff's Office Requesting Help For Missing Man

The Macoupin County Sheriff’s Office is looking for a missing man.


At the request of the Macoupin County Sheriff's Department, the Illinois State Police is activating an Endangered Missing Person Advisory. The Macoupin County Sheriff's Department is requesting your assistance in locating Craig D. Winter. He is a 72-year-old white male. 

 

Mr. Winter is 5 feet 9 inches tall and weighs 140 pounds. He is bald and has blue eyes. He was last seen at 29824 Goshen Rd in Palmyra on Saturday, January 7th. He was driving a Blue 2006 Honda Ridgeline pickup truck with Illinois License plate, 1982412B. 

 

Mr. Winter has a condition that places him in danger. Any person with information regarding the whereabouts of Craig D. Winter should contact the Macoupin County Sheriff's Department at 217-854-3135. Or contact 9-1-1.

Shelby County Community Services Encourages Counseling for Recovering Addicts

Shelby County Community Services has counseling support for a variety of people. 

 

Substance Abuse Coordinator Natalie Inman is focused on counseling for people recovering from addiction. 

Learn more at sccsil.org. Inman appeared as a guest on the Shelbyville WTIM Morning Show.

Greater Shelbyville Chamber of Commerce Accepting Applications

Greater Shelbyville Chamber of Commerce accepting applications for new membership. 

 

Vice President Regina Agney says the Chamber aims to bring more people to Shelbyville. 

Learn more on the Greater Shelbyville Chamber of Commerce Facebook. Agney appeared as a guest on the Shelbyville WTIM Morning Show.

Lake Shelbyville Water Level Update

A Lake Shelbyville water update from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. 

Natural Resource Specialist Brock Key speaking on the Shelbyville WTIM Morning Show Friday. 

WTIM Swap Shop Ends On-Air After Nearly 71 Years; Moving to On-Line Platform Monday

The long-running "Swap Shop" buy, sell, trade, and giveaway program that's been a part of programming on WTIM Taylorville for nearly 71 years, had its final airing on Friday.

 

The program was part of WTIM's programming from the day the station went on the air January 20th, 1952.

 

  The Miller Media Group, owner of WTIM, is moving Swap Shop to an on-line platform starting Monday.  By clicking the "Swap Shop" icon on taylorvilledailynews.com, residents can post their items to buy, sell, trade, or giveaway absolutely free.   Pictures of the items can be included as well.   Ads submitted are subject to approval by station personnel before they go "live" on the web site.

Miller Media Group Announces Co-Employees of Quarter for 4th Quarter 2022

The Miller Media Group in Taylorville named their 4th Quarter 2022 "Co-Employees of the Quarter" on Friday.

 

 

Teresa Nelson has been an advertising account executive with the group for over 12 years, helping local businesses attract customers.

 

 

Avery Cooper has been an on-air announcer and host of the WTIM Morning Show for over 2 years.  He's also the Voice of the Taylorville Lady Tornaodoes.

 

Both received 100-dollar checks from General Manager Kami Payne and are in a drawing this spring for a Florida trip.

Assault Ban Passes The House

The Illinois House passed a ban on assault weapons on Friday morning.  Legislation prohibiting the sale of assault rifles, rapid-fire devices, and magazines over 12 rounds was a big part of the new bill. House Speaker Chris Welch says that a lot of this stems from the deadly fourth of July shooting in Highland Park. 

 

 

The bill passed 64-43.  Downstate Illinois Representative Charles Meier of Okawville says that his constituents are worried about the ban. 

 

 

Advocates say something must be done to stop violence.  They argue that no one is coming to take guns.  If someone has an assault rifle, they are required to have the serial number of that rifle recorded with their FOID card. 

 

The bill now moves to the Senate. 

Litchfield Fire Respond To Garage Fire

A press release courtesy of the Litchfield Fire Department who battled a garage fire yesterday afternoon.

 

On January 5, 2023, at 1301 hours, the Litchfield Fire Department was dispatched by Montgomery County 911 to a report of a Garage on Fire. The First arriving unit found a fully involved garage. The structural components had collapsed prior to arrival and the contents were burning. The water supply was not readily available. A 2.5" handline was deployed to the west end of the building to keep fire from impinging on a stationary, residential propane tank and booster tank water was used.

 

Water tenders arrived from Raymond Harvel, Carlinville, and Hillsboro to maintain a larger water supply. A second 1.75" handline was deployed to the East end for suppression and to protect a forklift not yet involved. Carlinville FD arrived on scene with personnel who were directed to add a third handline branched off of the initial 2.5" using a gated wye appliance. All personnel performing suppression transferred to overhaul when the bulk of the fire was extinguished. After successfully moving enough debris the fire was deemed at a loss and stopped at 1445 hours. All equipment was collected and all units cleared the scene and returned to service.

 

The fire was fought by 8 LFD personnel, staffing 5 apparatus. 

 

Mutual Aid Provided by Raymond Harvel Fire Department (2), Hillsboro Fire Department (2), and Carlinville Fire Department (5). 

 

An investigation into the origin and cause of the fire was conducted and is listed in the investigation report as cause undetermined. 

 

The Litchfield Fire Department reminds everyone that when the weather turns cold, it can bring a chill into our homes. Portable space heaters have become a popular way to supplement central heating or heat one room.  If you plan to use portable electric space heaters, make sure to follow these tips and recommendations:

• Purchase a heater with the seal of a qualified testing laboratory.

•  Keep the heater at least 3 feet away from anything that can burn

• Choose a heater with a thermostat and overheat protection.

• Place the heater on a solid, flat surface.

•  Make sure your heater has an auto shut-off to turn the heater off if it tips over.

•  Keep space heaters out of the way of foot traffic. Never block an exit.

•  Keep children away from the space heater.

•  Plug the heater directly into the wall outlet. Never use an extension cord.

•  Space heaters should be turned off and unplugged when you leave the room or go to bed.

Coffey Elected To 95th District Vacancy

Republicans have their selection for the 95th District. Mike Coffey Jr. was appointed to fill the 95th District vacancy left by Tim Butler.  Butler resigned in December.  Coffey will be sworn in and take the oath of office next week on the first day of the 103rd General Assembly which is Wednesday< January 11th, 2023. 

 

Sangamon County Republican Central Committee Chair Dianne Barghouti Hardwick thanked Tim Butler for his service to the voters of his district and says that they made an excellent choice with Coffey.  Mike says he is honored to serve the residents of the 95th district.  “As a small business owner, I understand both the opportunities of our great state and the struggles of working families.  I will work hard to build on Tim Butler’s record of dedicated service to our communities and honor the legacy of the hometown of Abraham Lincoln.”

 

Coffey is a lifelong resident of Springfield and owner of the Papa Frank’s restaurant.  He currently serves as the Chairman of the Springfield Metropolitan Exposition and Auditorium Authority (SMEAA) board, which governs the Bank of Springfield Center. 

 

The appointment for Coffey was made by a weighted vote of the 95th District Republican county chairs based on the number of ballots cast in each county in the November election.  Sangamon County held 94% of the vote, Christian County had approximately 5% of the vote, and Macon County had 1%. 

ISP Investigating Fatal Crash On Route 104 Near I-55

A crash on Illinois 104 on Thursday afternoon has taken one life and sent multiple people including children to the hospital with injuries. 33-year-old Cassandra Prindle was traveling westbound in a 2014 Ford Explorer on Illinois Route 104, ¼ mile east of I-55 near Pawnee.  For an unknown reason, Prindle crossed the center line striking 20-year-old Fred Fleck of Sherman who was driving a 2019 International Semi-Truck. Prindle spun into the path of a 42-year-old female in a 2004 Toyota Camry, striking the vehicle nearly head-on.

 

The 42-year-old was pronounced deceased on the scene. The name is being withheld pending next of kin notification. Prindle went to an area hospital with injuries.  There were two minor children also in Prindle’s vehicle and they were also transported to the hospital with injuries. 

 

Prindle was charged with failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident and improper lane usage and the crash is being investigated by ISP, and the ISP Traffic Crash Reconstruction Unit or TCRU. 

Beans - The Magical Fruit

Beans are a magical fruit. 

University of Illinois Extension Nutrition and Wellness Educator Lisa Peterson says that today, January 6th, is National Bean Day. 

 

She says soup or non-traditional chili is a great way to incorporate beans into your diet. 

You can even use beans in your deserts. 

There are ways to reduce the other side of increased bean usage. 

Learn more at extension.illinois.edu. Peterson appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show.

Applications Being Accepted For Scholarship For ICF

Applications are being currently accepted by the Illinois Conservation Foundation for the 2023 Conservation Achievement Scholarship program.  The foundation annually awards scholarships to outstanding high school seniors in Illinois who demonstrate dedication to the preservation, protection, or enhancement of the state’s natural resources.

 

There are four scholarships available worth $2,000 for the current school year.  One of the scholarships is reserved for an applicant who is a dependent of a current employee of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. 

 

Colleen Callahan, chair of the Illinois Conservation Foundation Board of Directors and director of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources says that the ICF Conservation Achievement Scholarship program rewards high school students interested in conservation.  

 

ICF Scholarships have been awarded since 2005 and applicants must be an Illinois resident and a senior in an Illinois high school.  Applications must be received by March 3rd, 2023.  Detailed instructions and the 2023 application form can be accessed through the ICF website at www.ilconservation.org.  Contact the Illinois Conservation Foundation at 217-785-2003 or info@ilconservation.org for more information or to make a donation to support the Conservation Achievement Scholarship program. 

Illinois Reaches 7.5 Million Organ/Tissue Registrants

The State of Illinois has reached 7.5 million registrants for the organ/tissue donor registry. Of the more than 12.8 million people living in Illinois, 10,146,583 qualify to become organ/tissue donors.  Of those 75% have registered as organ/tissue donors. In addition, Secretary of State Jesse White says that more than 270,000 16 and 17 year old’s have registered with the program since 2018.  

 

There are currently 4,000 people statewide who are waiting on the Organ/Tissue Donor Program and 300 die each year waiting for a  transplant. It takes less than a minute to register, and Secretary White would love to see more people register.  He says one person can improve the quality of life for up to 25 people. 

 

Secretary White has headed the state’s Organ/Tissue Donor Registry since 1999.  He has visited hospitals, schools, libraries, driver services facilities as well as other places to promote and register Illinoisans for the donor program. Secretary White’s sister Doris Ivy, received a kidney transplant from an anonymous donor that extended her life for 28 years.

 

Illinoisans can register with the Secretary of State’s Organ/Tissue Donor Registry at www.LifegoesOn.com or by calling 1-800-210-2106. 

Taylorville Food Pantry Assisting Your Resolutions

Taylorville Food Pantry can assist your healthy eating resolution. 

Co-coordinator of the Taylorville Food Pantry Amy Hagen says that the pantry is proud of how many people they serve. 

Central Illinois Food Bank implemented a healthy eating guideline in 2022. This allows the Taylorville Food Pantry to help your healthy eating journey. 

If you would like to volunteer as part of your resolution, Hagen invites you to do so.

Learn more at taylorvillefoodpantry.com. Hagen appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show.

9-8-8 Number Helping Those Who Need Mental Health

Memorial Behavioral Health Counselors are making a difference with the new 9-8-8 lifeline.  Over the past six months, Memorial Behavioral Health counselors answer local calls to the nationwide 9-8-8 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline.  This service, intended as “911 for mental health” was created by the U.S. Congress in 2020 as a successor to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline and was launched across America in 2022.  

 

MBH crisis counselors help answer calls from anyone that has a 217 area code.  The service complements other crisis response programs including the 8th street clinic in Springfield and the Mobile Crisis Response team. Diana Knaebe, President of Memorial Behavioral Health says that the goal of 9-8-8 is to make it easier for people across the country to access mental health resources in times of crisis. 

 

Since 9-8-8 launched in July, MBH has answered 366 calls from local residents, with around half of callers reporting they live in Sangamon County with 184. Christian County reported 6 calls. 138 came from an unknown location.  

 

During the past six months, MBH staff provided 89% of callers with the help they needed over the phone including follow-up calls if desired.  A small percentage of callers sometimes require more intensive services.  Around 6% of callers were referred to the MBH Mobile Crisis Response team.   

Multiple Tornadoes Reported In Central Illinois Tuesday Evening

The National Weather Service reported 7 tornadoes confirmed in Illinois on January 3rd, with 6 of those in the National Weather Service-Lincoln area.  This is the most January tornadoes to occur in an event in the state of Illinois since January 7th, 1989 when 8 tornadoes occurred. 

 

Several funnel clouds and tornadoes were reported in a narrow zone between I-55 and I-57. Heavy rain was reported and a few sub-severe hail reports were received, with one report of 1.5” hail that came in from Farmer City. 

 

An EF-1 tornado touched down in Maroa for 0.89 miles with 110 mph winds.  An EF-0 tornado also touched down 3 miles southwest of Maroa for 0.31 miles. An unknown tornado touched down in Illiopolis. An unknown tornado touched down in Latham and a tornado touched down in Mt. Auburn.

 

The EF-1 tornado in Maroa destroyed a barn and tossed a grain bin across the highway.  A fence was also destroyed.  The EF-0 tornado in Maroa caused damage to an abandoned bowling alley on N. 22nd Street taking off some wall panels. 

 

The tornadoes occurred between 3 PM and 5:30 PM on January 3rd.  

Doctors Urge Everyone To Learn CPR

When Damar Hamlin hit the ground after making a tackle in the Cincinnati Bengals/Buffalo Bills game, CPR was needed to save Hamlin’s life.  CPR is a life saving skill and OSF Healthcare pediatric wellness specialist Jordan Meeks says that it is a critical skill for young people to learn.

 

 

Meeks visits schools across Illinois teaching students hands-only CPR.  Recently she was in a town where first responders might take a little longer to get to an emergency which is why it’s so important to learn CPR.  

 

CPR is used when someone is unconscious and in cardiac arrest.  The first thing to do is call 9-1-1. If you’re by yourself, put the phone on speaker while you help the person out.  Get over the person, interlink your fingers and press hard in the middle of the chest over and over. 

 

 

CPR may also be done with an AED or automated external defibrillator.  An AED is a small device that’s common in schools and workplaces these days.  Meeks explains that two pads are applied to the patient's skin with one near the heart and the other on the person’s side with wires leading to the AED box. 

 

 

AED will continue the cycle of shocks and CPR until the first responders arrive.  Teaching hands-only CPR doesn’t require certification, Meeks says.  Someone can easily learn the tools and pass them on to others. Meeks encourages you to call your local first responders, your local hospital, or the American Red Cross to learn more about mouth-to-mouth resuscitation training. See a full guide for CPR here

 

 

IDOT Improvements Continue Throughout 2023

The Illinois Department of Transportation or IDOT is continuing to push for improvements.  As of September 30th, the Rebuild Illinois plan has made $9.6 billion in improvements on over 4,546 miles of highway, 422 bridges, and 645 additional safety improvements.  

 

Governor Pritzker and IDOT announced aviation improvements as well, as they identified short and long term needs and goals of the state’s airports, marking the first comprehensive study of its kind in more than 25 years. Over 85 public-use airport facilities will be studied to find ways to support local economy, improve quality of life, and boost mobility. In November, IDOT celebrated the opening of a new air traffic control tower at Lewis University Airport, an $8 million project supported by $6 million from Rebuild Illinois.

 

Governor Pritzker says that the sixth and final round of $520 million in Rebuild Illinois grants to advance municipal, township, and county projects across the state.  $1.5 billion has been distributed by IDOT to address local transportation needs in over 2,850 communities, municipalities, and townships.

 

A program called the Safe Routes to School program has provided $12.3 million in grants to 57 projects throughout the state. For more information on this program, please visit the IDOT website at https://idot.illinois.gov/. 

SmallTownTaylorville Recaps 2022

Smalltowntaylorville.com celebrating a fantastic 2022 with hopes for an even better 2023. 

That’s Chairman of the committee Steve Craggs. 

 

Board Member Lee Skinner live streams smalltowntaylorville.com events on Facebook. 

Craggs says 2023 will be the best ever for the committee. 

He’s looking forward to Spring, which will return the Car Show and Cruise and the Farmer’s Market. 

Learn more at smalltowntaylorville.com. Craggs and Skinner appeared as guests on the WTIM Morning Show.

Governor Pritzker Optimistic Of Courts In No Cash Bail Update

Governor JB Pritzker says that he feels comfortable that the no-cash bail portion of the Safe-T Act will be upheld by the Illinois Supreme Court. The pre-trial fairness act was previously ruled unconstitutional by a Kankakee County Judge. The State led by Attorney General Kwame Raoul has appealed to the Illinois Supreme Court. Illinois Governor JB Pritzker says he wants safer neighborhoods.

 

 

The Governor is expressing optimism that the pre-trial fairness act will be allowed to be implemented.  If that doesn’t happen, The Governor says they will continue to focus on public safety.

 

 

Governor Pritzker expects a ruling sometime in the next few months.  The State Supreme Court has issued a stay while the matter is under review. 

January Is Human Trafficking Awareness Month

January is Human Trafficking Awareness month and the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services is partnering with the Power Project to train group home and residential care facility staff across Illinois on how to identify, intervene, and prevent human trafficking among their youth in treatment. Nearly 1,000 congregate care staff in 37 facilities across the state completed sexual exploitation training in 2022. Governor JB Pritzker says that this is something that doesn’t just happen in big cities. 

 

 

Governor JB Pritzker spoke on the topic and urges Illinoisans to be aware of all of the signs.

 

 

A trafficked child might have an adult control them by speaking for them, seem out of place given the time of day or night, look discheveled or dressed in clothes that they could not afford to buy, they could show signs of physical abuse such as bruising or red marks, not possess any identification, or be performing inappropriate work for their age. 

 

Often, victims of human trafficking do not seek help as they are fearful, ashamed, distrust law enforcement, or become dependent on the perpetrator.  The Illinois Safe Children Act assures that children who are coerced into trafficking are innocent and immune from criminal prosecution.  

 

Anyone who believes a child might have been trafficked or is in danger, should immediately call 9-1-1 and the DCFS Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-25-ABUSE (1-800-252-2873). 

Rep. Halbrook Overviews Lame Duck Session

Illinois lawmakers are in Springfield for the lame duck session before the new legislature begins January 11th. 

 

State Representative Brad Halbrook provides an overview.

Rep. Halbrook says that lame duck is an opportunity for outgoing lawmakers to vote one last time. 

He adds that democrat lawmakers have their sights on a piece of legislation banning assault rifles in Illinois. 

Rep. Halbook believes this piece of legislation is widely unpopular. 

Learn more at rephalbrook.com. He appeared as a guest on the WTIM Morning Show.

New State Laws In 2023

More than 180 new laws went into effect on January 1st in Illinois and some of the new laws you need to be aware of. The SAFE-T Act has taken center stage as that is still being discussed in the court but other ones that you should be aware of as well.   There will be a new student school helpline that you can call, called the Student Confidential Reporting Act, which alows officials to receive reports and other information on students that may potentially harm themselves. 

 

New smoke detector laws require that all new smoke detectors must be the ten year sealed alarms. Anyone in violation of these laws will have 90 days to change their smoke detectors or risk being fined up to $100 or up to $1,500.  There are new penalties for school zone driving violations.  If you go around a school bus, or if you are speeding in excess of 20 mph or more in a school zone you could face community service. 

 

Chicago Sky, Chicago Fire, and Chicago Red Stars license plates will now be available, but you will not be able to get St. Louis Rams license plates anymore as the team has moved to Los Angeles. Latex gloves will be banned in food service establishments with health care workers set to ban latex in 2024.  

 

Minimum wage rose from $12 to $13/hr.  If tips are earned, the rate will increase to $7.80 but workers must still earn the minimum wage after receiving tips or the employer is required to make up the difference. By 2025, the minimum wage will be $15/hr. 

 

There are a bunch of new state figures including the State Snake, Sweet Corn Appreciation day, a new State Rock, and an official State Theater. The new State Snake is the Eastern Milksnake, August 1st has been designated as “Sweet Corn Appreciation Day” and Dolostone has been designated as the official Illinois State Rock.  The official State Theater is located within the New Salem historic site also called the Theatre in the Park. 

 

To see a full list of the 180 laws that have been passed, click here.

Taylorville Food Pantry and Central IL Food Bank Reflect on 2022 - Focus Shifts to 2023

Taylorville Food Pantry and Central Illinois Food Bank hoping for a prosperous 2023. 

 

Food pantry co-coordinator Amy Hagen looks back on a successful 2022. 

CIFB Public Relations Manager Tim Kirsininkis says the food bank made huge strides last year. 

Hagen says the food pantry is making progress on its space expansion. 

Kirsininkis says that the food bank wants to continue its momentum into this new year. The Food Bank will offer displays to educate patrons on healthy eating. 

Learn more at centralilfoodbank.org or taylorvillefoodpantry.com. Kirsininkis and Hagen appeared as guests on the WTIM Morning Show.

Taylorville City Council Meets For First Meeting of 2023

The Taylorville City Council met on Tuesday evening at City Hall for their regular city council meeting. The board approved minutes from the public hearing held on December 19th and for the regular council meeting held on December 19th. The board unanimously approved an ordinance approving and authorizing the execution of a professional services agreement for the second amendment to the Taylorville Business Development District (BDD) agreement. 

 

The board also passed a motion to direct the Mayor to sign a change order from Henson Robinson Company for the Taylorville Municipal Building Roof Repair in the amount of $6,295. Alderman Jim Olive explained to the board what this entails.

 

 

The board heard an update from City Attorney Rocci Romano and then Mayor Bruce Barry gave his update.

 

 

Alderman Larry Budd proposed pulling $315.11 from the total payment of bills as that was to replace broken glasses for a police officer and not included as being covered in their current contract.

 

 

After some discussion, it was decided that the city would pay for the glasses and the motion to approve payment of bills passed for the amount of $765,919.88.

 

After the meeting, Alderman Kathy Driskell shared what she is looking forward to in 2023 for the city of Taylorville.

 

 

The next city council meeting is set for January 17th.

Taylorville Kiwanis Hear Reports from Committee Chairs on Children, Youth Programs at Weekly Meeting

The Taylorville Kiwanis Club held their monthly business meeting with committee chairs reviewing local efforts for children and youth, at their weekly meeting at the Taylorville Moose Lodge on Tuesday.

 

The on-going “2 for 2” Kiwanis membership drive was reviewed, as was a questionnaire distributed and completed by Kiwanis members during the meeting reviewing how the club can better serve children and youth in the Taylorville community.

 

Kiwanis Park Committee co-chair Larry Kemner reported that a new sign at the park has been installed with revised instructions on how to book the Park’s Pavilion.  Kemner added the annual Spring Clean-up of the park by Kiwanis members will be held again this year, and 2 new grills will be installed at the pavilion.  

 

Fund Raising Committee chair Will Perkins reported on the results of several recent committee meetings, with the committee announcing Tuesday that a first-ever Cash Drawing fund-raiser will take place this spring.  First prize will be 5-thousand dollars, with 200 tickets of one-hundred dollars each sold.   If all tickets aren’t sold, the fund-raiser becomes a 50-50.   More details will be forthcoming.  

 

Perkins, who is also Kiwanis Student Leadership Committee chair, told Kiwanis members that both the Taylorville Kiwanis Junior Builder’s Club, and the High School Key Club, will be presenting programs at upcoming weekly club meetings.  

 

Kiwanis Interclub Committee chair Blain Cornwell reported that the annual interclub with the Kiwanis High School Key Club will take place this winter.  Several members of the Kiwanis Club bring pizzas and feed the Key Club members during the meeting.

 

The Taylorville Kiwanis Club is part of a 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 Moose Lodge.  For information on the club, go to taylorvillekiwanis.com.   

Severe Thunderstorms, Tornadoes Reported Late Tuesday Afternoon

Central Illinois experienced severe weather including some cited tornadoes, late Tuesday afternoon just as darkness was setting in during the 4 and 5 o’clock hours.

 

Christian County Emergency Management Agency Director Jeff Stoner told Regional Radio News late Tuesday afternoon that so far, no damage reports have come in.

 

 

The National Weather Service in Lincoln also reported trained spotters tracked a tornado for a time in western Macon County near Harristown, and in eastern DeWitt County, during the 5 o’clock hour.  All tornado warnings were allowed to expire by 5:30 Tuesday afternoon as the thunderstorms that created the tornadoes decreased in intensity.

Attorney General Appealing SAFE-T Act Ruling

Attorney General Kwame Raoul issued a statement on Saturday concerning the Illinois Supreme Court delaying the SAFE-T Act start date of January 1st. Attorney General Raoul says that his office has filed an appeal with the Illinois Supreme Court as only the Supreme Court’s ruling will be binding in court. 

 

“As we have stated previously, my office filed an appeal with the Illinois Supreme Court because in this matter, only the Supreme Court’s final decision on the merits will be binding on all Illinois courts. It is important to note that the order issued today by the court is not a decision on the merits of the constitutionality of the SAFE-T Act, and I appreciate the court’s interest in expediting the appeal. We look forward to mounting a robust defense of the constitutionality of the law and ensuring that it goes into effect across the state.” 

 

 

Most of the issues with the SAFE-T Act have been over no cash bail in courts.  A lot of the other rulings from the SAFE-T Act such as more training for police officers, and body cameras for all officers has been approved.

Shelby County Sheriff Safety Reminders For New Year

Some safety reminders for the time of year from the Shelby County Sheriff Brian McReynolds. 

 

First up, Sheriff McReynolds says to slow down.

He adds that you should be cautious of deer. 

If you hit a deer, Sheriff McReynolds doesn’t want you to worry. He asks that you call the Sheriff’s Office. 

On the topic of crime safety, Sheriff McReynolds tells Shelby County residents to continue to call in crimes if they see them. Shelby County participated in the lawsuit that suspended the no-cash-bail portion of the Safe T Act. 

Sheriff McReynolds appeared as a guest on the Shelbyville WTIM Morning Show.

Caffeine And The Effects On Pregnancy

If you are pregnant and looking for a New Year’s resolution, some doctors suggest taking a look at the amount of caffeine you’re consuming.  Children who were exposed to small amounts of caffeine before birth were shorter on average than those who were not, according to a recent study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. 

 

Gaps in height weren’t significant, but were detected at age 4-8 according to researchers.  The findings were reported even in children of pregnant women who consumed less than 50 mg of caffeine per day on average, which is well below the current guidelines. Pregnant women should consume less than 200 mg of caffeine a day according to the American Academy of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. 

 

Dr. Jamie Plett, an OB/GYN with OSF Healthcare says that a mug of filtered coffee has about 140 mg.  

 

 

When it comes to growth in children there are other factors at play including gender, health conditions, nutrition, and environmental conditions. 

 

 

According to researchers, there is no way to know fi the difference in height would continue into adulthood.  If it did, there would be concerns of heart disease, obesity, and diabetes, which is often associated with smaller stature.  Dr. Plett says she talks to her peatients about caffeine intake and staying around that 200 mg mark. 

 

 

Dr. Plett encourages parents to not overthink any study and to talk with their doctor if they have any questions or concerns. 

 

 

As with any major lifestyle or dietary change, remember to talk with your healthcare provider first, as changes can affect your mood or medical conditions.

Rep. Halbrook Overviews Illinois Law Changes for 2023

The new year means new laws. 

 

State Representative Brad Halbrook says Amendment One on your November ballot passed. 

Rep. Halbrook says that the no-cash-bail portion of the Safe T Act is largely in limbo. 

Minimum wage earners will see a bump in pay. 

You might see an increase in gas prices. Gov. JB Pritzker signed a bill suspending a gas tax in early 2022. That tax will resume this year. 

Learn more at rephalbrook.com. He appeared as a guest on the Shelbyville WTIM Morning Show.

Christian County Sheriff's Office Offers Update On Missing Mt Auburn Man

The Christian County Sheriff’s Office has released an update on a missing Mt. Auburn man.

 

On November 22, 2022, a male subject from rural Mt. Auburn was reported missing to the Christian County Sheriff’s Office. The 52-year-old male, Gregory A. Mendenhall, left his mother’s residence on November 1, 2022. Mendenhall left the residence driving a red 2007 Chevrolet pickup with Illinois license plate of 7215F-B. Family members advised Mendenhall has autism and his destination is unknown.

 

On December 27, 2022, the Christian County Sheriff’s Office discovered that Mendenhall had been a patient at a hospital in Kerrville, Texas. He had already been released from the hospital and his whereabouts are unknown at this time.

 

Please help us in locating Mr. Mendenhall. If anyone sees this vehicle, or learns any information, please contact the Christian County Sheriff’s Office at (217)824-4961.

Taylorville City Council To Meet This Evening

A short Taylorville City Council meeting is scheduled for this evening at City Hall. The board will review an ordinance approving and authorizing the execution of a professional services agreement for the second amendment to the Taylorville BDD agreement.  The Mayor will also look to sign a change order for the roof repair.  

 

The board will hear from the City Attorney and Taylorville Mayor Bruce Barry. There are no committee reports to review. The board will also hear any public comments. Stay tuned to Regional Radio News for more on this story following the conclusion of this meeting. 

Taylorville Police Hunting Suspect In Break-in

TPD needs your assistance in trying to identify this subject.  On 12-25-2022 at approximately 0359AM, Annie’s Gaming was broken into.  The subject was unable to take any amount of currency. He caused significant damage which we are waiting for a total amount.

 

If you know this individual or a possible suspect please contact TPD or Crime Stoppers.

 

 

 

 

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