Local News

HSHS Welcomes General Surgeon To Taylorville

HSHS Medical Group welcomes a new general surgeon to Taylorville. Dr. Aftab Jafri, a general surgeon, now sees patients in Taylorville. Dr. Jafri’s office is located at HSHS Medical Group General Surgery Specialty Clinic, at 1304 West Burnett Drive. He also sees patients in Decatur. Dr. Jafri says that he has wanted to be a doctor for most of his life.



Dr. Jafri says it was seeing those patients suffering that made him want to help people. Dr. Jafri is very excited to be helping and seeing patients in Taylorville.


Dr. Jafri went on to say a little about what he does as a surgeon.


For more information about Dr. Jafri and other HSHS Medical Group specialists visit HSHSMedicalgroup.org or for referral information call 329-1000.



The Little Theater On The Square To Show Elf The Musical

John Stephens is the Executive Producer at The Little Theater on the Square in Sullivan and he said that they have a lot of pretty exciting things coming up including Elf – The Musical.



If you’re interested in getting tickets for Elf – The Musical, you can call the box office at 728-7375.



Stephens also discussed a project that currently he’s currently writing called, “Icons of Music – Diva’s Through the Decades.”



Stephens was a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.


November Is National Adoption Month

November marks National Adoption Month. Jen Florent, who is the public information officer with the Illinois department of children and family services. Jen says that adoption is important because there are so many children looking for homes.


The “What’s Your Connection” adoption campaign helps you to tell your story, and what your connection is through adoption. Florent says a lot more people have a connection to adoption than many may realize.



Florent says that every little bit helps and even just talking about adoption, gets other people talking and thinking and it could just help a child in need.


There are over 3,300 children looking for adoption homes in Illinois. For more information on adoption call 1-800-572-2390.


Congressman Rodney Davis Talks Gun Violence, The FEC, And Impeachment

Congressman Rodney Davis has some concerns about the current state of the FEC (Federal Election Commission). Congressman Davis wants to make certain that everyone who runs for office is following the rules.



Congressman Davis and a few other members of Congress were recently honored by the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence for authoring a bill to encourage retailers to sell gun safes and lock boxes. Congressman Davis said that passing the bill was a good common sense thing to do.



Congressman Davis said that Democrats in Washington promised to address the serious issues facing this country and instead of working to address the student loan crisis, the rising cost of health care, and the rising cost of prescription drugs, they decided to nationalize elections and impeach the President.



Congressman Davis was a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.


Dinner Seasoned With Love Is Having Their Annual Thanksgiving Meal This Saturday

Dinner Seasoned with Love is having their traditional Thanksgiving Dinner this coming Saturday from 11:30-12:30 at Calvary Baptist Church in Taylorville and Suzy Traughber, President of Dinner Seasoned with Love said that everyone is welcome to attend.



Dinner Seasoned with Love has been around since November of 2006 when they had their first meal. Traughber went on to say that Dinner Seasoned with Love was started to share the gospel.



Traughber said that Dinner Seasoned with Love is always looking for donations, but donations are especially welcome this time of year.


Traughber was a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.


Vandalia To Host Old State Capital Building Tours

There is history to be found all over the state of Illinois if you know where to look. The Vandalia Historic Society celebrates their past by holding Candlelight Christmas Tours. Site Representative Kim Lake explains what the event is. 

This is more than just walking around. Lake says there will be an opportunity to have some refreshments and dive into the history of the Vandalia Statehouse.  


The Historic Society puts a lot of effort into bringing the history of the building to life. According to Lake, there is some history involving President Abraham Lincoln.



For more information on the event, contact the Vandalia Historic Society at 618-283-1161, or visit their Facebook page.


Chris Miller With The National Weather Service Discusses The Recent Severe Weather In Central Illinois

The weather so far this year has been extremely unusual, but according to Chris Miller the Warning Coordination Meteorologist at the National Weather Service Central Illinois office says that it’s becoming more and more typical.



Miller went on to say that the jet stream is what drives our weather and that the month of October was a time of transition.



According to Miller, the precipitation that we’ve been seeing over the past few years along with the drastic weather changes points to one thing, climate change.


Miller was a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.


Senate Passes Daylight Saving Time Bill

The Senate approved legislation today that will make daylight saving time last year-round. The bill which was sponsored by State Senator Andy Manar is named Senate Bill 533. The bill would go into effect March of 2020 with the time change and than stay permanently. The idea for the bill change came from a class of students from Carlinville High School. Senator Manar says that he was happy to see the Government process work so well.



Manar says that he learned a lot about Daylight Saving Time throughout this process.


So far only Hawaii and Arizona don’t follow daylight saving time. Since time is regulated by federal law, the legislation would have to be passed to exempt Illinois, repeal or amend the Uniform Time Act of 1966. Over 35 states introduced legislation this year to end seasonal time changes. SB533 will now move to the House for consideration. 


Taylorville School Board Meets; Announces Report Card

The Taylorville School Board met Tuesday evening and while school report cards were a huge part of the meeting, the School Board also heard from the FFA who just returned from a trip to Kansas City, Missouri, showing off some of the rewards that the group had won from the trip. 


Some employees were added to some of the sports staffs including bowling, wrestling, and girls basketball. The School Board also announced dates for committee meetings for the strategic planning sessions including November 19th for finance and the building committee.  


The Taylorville School Report Cards were released by the State of Illinois. For the most part, Taylorville did quite well. The Junior High was exemplary after an underperforming in the past. Administrator Anita Brown explains that a lot goes into the rating.



You can view Taylorville’s report card, or any school Illinois by clicking here. Taylorville’s graduation rate is at 88% while the State is at 86%. Superintendent Chris Dougherty also gave her report as well and how proud she was of all the parents who showed up for Parent Teacher Conferences. 


Dr. Dougherty also talked about the recent active shooter drills and how much of a success that was with supervision from both Taylorville Fire and Police Departments.



The school also discussed the 2019 tax levy. A levy is the amount of money a school district certifies or asks, to be raised from local property taxes. Where the extension is the actual dollar amount billed to the property taxpayers in a district as determined by the county clerk. This year’s amount is roughly 13.5 million dollars. The 2019 levy is a 4.99% increase over the 2018 extension. The 2019 extension is estimated to be a $310,329 dollar increase or 2.34% from the 2018 extension.


Taylorville Kiwanis Club Hears About Missions for Taylorville, Inducts New Member at Weekly Luncheon

The Taylorville Kiwanis Club heard about the continuing needs of the Missions for Taylorville organization, and inducted a new member, during their weekly luncheon Tuesday at the club’s new meeting place, the Taylorville Moose Lodge.

Kiwanis member Pastor Bill Kerns spoke representing the Missions for Taylorville organization, an arm of the Taylorville Ministerial Association.  Kerns said the organization’s mission was originally to assist homeowners do home repairs and lawn work twice a year.  That mission was expanded after the December First tornado.

Kerns told the club that after the City of Taylorville designated the organization to donate to in assisting those affected after the tornado, it’s been a whirlwind eleven months.

All told, Missions for Taylorville has collected some 737-thousand dollars in donations from over 17-hundred donors, benefiting several hundred under or uninsured Taylorville residents in rebuilding or repairing their homes.

Kerns emphasized that while the organization has helped many homeowners the past eleven months, there are still 130 homeowners that need their home replaced or repaired, and the current Missions for Taylorville bank balance is some 57-thousand dollars.

Kerns said the group has begun a fund-raising campaign headed by Dick Adams, to raise some 500-thousand dollars to complete the work on those remaining 130 structures.   Kerns stated several times during his remarks, that Missions for Taylorville still needs donations and volunteers to complete their work.

James LeVault, an attorney with the Romano Law Firm in Taylorville, was inducted as the newest member of the Taylorville Kiwanis Club, by past president Michael Evanchak.

The Taylorville Kiwanis Club is part of global organization of volunteers dedicated to improving the world one child and one community at a time.  Weekly meetings are held Tuesdays at noon at their new meeting location, the Taylorville Moose Lodge.  For information on the club, go to taylorvillekiwanis.com.


Taylorville School Board To Meet Tonight

The Taylorville School Board will meet this evening for their November meeting. In old business, the board will discuss the Strategic Planning Update, there will also be a discussion of abating taxes for the 2019 year. Included in tonight's meeting will also be a consideration of worker’s compensation insurance renewal, review of the proposed 2019 tax levy, and a review of the 2019 Illinois District Report Card. The meeting will also have a Superintendent report from Dr. Chris Dougherty, claims, treasurer’s report, consideration of personnel, and an executive session. 


Master Gardening Training Classes Start In January

Gwen Podeschi is a Christian County Master Gardner and she discussed the upcoming Master Gardening training classes that start in January. Podeschi said the classes can either be taken in person or online and if you’re interested, online registration is now open.



There are a number of different classes that you would take when training to become a Master Gardener including classes on basic soils, botany, and pest and disease control to name a few.



The classes are taught by University of Illinois trained educators with University of Illinois extension and they all teach to their specialty.



Podeschi was a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.


Central Illinois Receives First Snowstorm Of 2019-2020 Winter Season

A Fall snowstorm dumped over 3 ½ inches in some places in central Illinois snarling traffic, and causing cancellations, closings, and delays. Taylorville reported 3.7 inches of snow, Decatur reported 4.5, Springfield reported 1.3, and Mattoon reported 3.5 inches as well. A jack-knifed semi shut down I-72 for a good portion of Monday evening near South Jacksonville, and ISP reported over 70 vehicle crashes in the Southern Illinois area and over 170 vehicle crashes throughout the state. 


While the snow has tapered off, wind chill values across Central Illinois are supposed to remain frigid today at -7 to 3 degrees throughout the day. Roads today in Central Illinois, especially in the morning, are very slick and ISP is encouraging everyone to slow down and drive safely this morning. Turn your headlights on and give plenty of room between you and the vehicle in front of you. This evening’s weather forecast is calling for more of the same with a low around 11 and wind chills to remain at -1 to 9 degrees overnight. Stay tuned to Regional Radio News for more updates on weather, road conditions, closings, delays, cancellations, and everything else weather-related.


State Representative Avery Bourne Talks Veteran Issues and School Funding

Illinois State Representative Avery Bourne is a Republican member of the Illinois House of Representatives representing the 95th district and she talked about her time on the Veterans Affairs Committee and how it was the model of bipartisanship.


Sometimes when Veterans and their families move they might not have the time to apply for and get occupational licenses. Bourne discussed what the Illinois General Assembly did to help make that process just a little bit easier for Veterans and their families.



Two years ago the Illinois General Assembly passed a bipartisan bill that altered the school funding formula. Representative Bourne supported that measure and she said that we’ve seen a lot of good things happen because of that new law.



Representaive Bourne was a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.


30th Annual Festival Of Trees Announced

The 30th annual Memorial’s Festival of Trees will be held from November 23rd until December 1st at the Orr Building on the Illinois State Fairgrounds. The theme for this year’s event is “Jingle Bells and Seashells” and Program Director, Amanda Johnson says that this theme should whisk you away to beaches despite the cold temps outside.



Johnson says this event is for everyone and could help give you ideas for your own Christmas tree.


With over 200 decorated trees and wreaths, there will be plenty of activities for the whole family including the Gingerbread Village, Little Elves’ Workshop, Candy Cane Express Train, North Pole Toy Shop, the Holiday Kitchen, and of course, Santa.



For more information on the Festival of Trees, you can visit their website at www.memorialsfestivaloftrees.com.


Congressman Rodney Davis Talks About The Work That His Veterans Advisory Council Is Doing

Congressman Rodney Davis has represented the Illinois 13th Congressional District since January of 2013 and he recently announced the opening of a new VA Clinic in Bloomington and he discussed the impact that the new clinic will have for those Veterans in Central Illinois.


Congressman Davis went on to talk about the important work that his Veterans Advisory Council is doing including coming up with the Hire More Heroes Act that changed Obamacare to incentivize small businesses to hire more of our nation’s Veterans.



Finally, Congressman Davis discussed what he hopes that his Veterans Advisory Council can accomplish in the future and what his office has done for Veterans within Illinois’s 13th Congressional District.


Congressman Davis appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.


Lake Land College To Hold Christmas Concert

The Lake Land College Community Choir will present a free holiday concert at 3 PM on Sunday, November 24th in the Lake Land College Theater. Music Instructor Nancy Caldwell, says the choir performs twice a year, but the Christmas concert is everyone’s favorite.



Caldwell says, that after all the rehearsals are complete, it is certainly special to see everyone smiling after the performance.


There will be a reception afterward for everyone.



For more information about the holiday, concert contact Nancy Caldwell at 217-234-5464 or ncaldwell@lakelandcollege.edu.


Accident On Park Street Leading Into Taylorville

Police are urging caution and urging you to go slow throughout the rest of the day, as wind is making for hazardous conditions on the road. With snow still falling, and wind speeds that have the potential to reach 31 miles an hour, Police are asking you to turn on your lights and proceed with caution. A vehicle accident under the train underpass on Park Street leading into the City of Taylorville slowed down traffic on Monday afternoon. No injuries were reported.




Multiple Vehicle Accidents; ISP Encouraging Limited Travel

Illinois State Police are warning of multiple vehicle accidents on I-55, I-74, and multiple other roads. There are especially a large number of vehicles in Logan County on I-55 between mile marker 142 and mile marker 123. Road conditions are worsening so ISP is encouraging you to please leave plenty of room between you and the car in front of you, turn your headlights on, and even avoid travel if at all possible. Road conditions are not expected to improve till late afternoon. 


Nursing Pipeline Preparatory Class Finding Success

St. John’s College of Nursing hosted the first Nursing Pipeline Preparatory Class last week.  The class is comprised of 16 freshman high school students from Springfield area High Schools. The nursing pipeline preparatory class or NP3 class was developed by Dr. Charlene Aaron chancellor of St. John’s College of Nursing.  She wanted to help prepare high school students better for college.


Dr. Aaron said this gives kids a chance to see what these programs all entail.


The class still has yet to study wound care, suturing, and the cardiac system. Dr. Aaron says that the nice thing about having Freshmen come is that they will bring them back every year to keep the classes coming in. 



For more information on the NP3 program, call 217-525-5628 or email. NP3outreach@sjcs.edu.


Family Drug's Traci Cutler Discusses Medicare Part D

Traci Cutler is a Patient Advocate at Family Drug in Shelbyville and she explained what it is that she does for her customers every single day.


Trying to understand Medicare can be difficult. Cutler explained how Medicare works and all the different parts to it.



Finally, Cutler went into more detail about Medicare Part D and why it’s so important to get signed up for it when your Medicare begins.


Cutler appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.


Veteran's Honored Across Central Illinois

Veteran’s Day celebrations will be taking place all throughout Central Illinois today. The Holiday, which occurs on November 11th every year in the US, is commemorated on that day because it is the 11th hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month of 1918 that signaled the end of World War One or at that time “The Great War” known as armistice day. The holiday was changed from Armistice Day to Veterans Day in 1954 by President Dwight D. Eisenhower. For a while, Veteran’s Day was moved to the fourth Monday in October, but in 1971, President Gerald Ford moved it back to November 11th. Over 18.2 million living veterans served during at least one war as of 2018. 9 percent of veterans are women. 7 million veterans served during the Vietnam War and 3 million have served in support of the War on Terrorism. Of the 16 million Americans who served during World War II, about 495,000 are still alive. In Taylorville, the American Legion will be hosting a commemoration. Dave Hendricks says the festivities kick off at 10 AM with Mayor Barry speaking, and the Taylorville Municipal band will play. 



Bob Ridings in Pana will be doing a free luncheon and oil change on Veterans Day. General Manager Darren Seaton says it’s the least they can do.



Seaton says this is the second year that they are doing this and that they are proud of all Veterans and want to say thank you.



Regional Radio News wants to salute both past and present Veterans for their service to this country.


U of I Extension's Andrew Holsinger Discusses How You Can Get Your Plants Ready For Winter

Andrew Holsinger is the Horticulture Educator at University of Illinois Extension and he talked about the importance of getting your plants ready for the upcoming winter.


Holsinger went on to discuss what U of I Extension has done to replace the trees that were damaged in the December 1st, 2018 tornado.



Finally, Holsinger discussed the different types of barriers that you can use to protect your young plants from Deer, Rabbits, and other critters.



Holsinger appeared as a guest on the Newstalk WTIM Morning Show.


Army Corps Of Engineers To Hold Meeting Tuesday Evening

The US Army Corps of Engineers will be holding a special public meeting at 6 PM, Tuesday evening, at the Lake Shelbyville Visitor Center. This meeting will be held to discuss the current water control plan for Lake Shelbyville, the water control operations, and dam safety. There will also be a presentation from the engineering staff for the US Army Corps of Engineers from the St. Louis District Office, to present information about water control operations, procedures, and dam safety. 


The Lake Shelbyville Visitor Center is located east of the Lake Shelbyville Main Dam at 1989 State Highway 16 in Shelbyville. For additional information on the special meeting, contact the project office at 217-774-3951 or email lakeshelbyville@usace.army.mil.


Winter Weather Advisory In Effect for Monday; Up to 2 Inches of Snow Expected

From the National Weather Service in Lincoln:



* WHAT...Snow expected. Total snow accumulations of up to two

* WHERE...Portions of central and west central Illinois.

* WHEN...From 6 AM to 2 PM CST Monday.

* IMPACTS...Plan on slippery road conditions as temperatures fall
  Monday morning.


Slow down and use caution while traveling.

The latest road conditions for Illinois can be obtained on the
Internet at www.gettingaroundillinois.com.



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