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Local News Archives for 2014-08

Staunton Infrastructure Grant

A 625,000 grant has been awarded to the city of Staunton for infrastructure upgrades that will pave the way for a local business, TDS Transport Inc., to expand and create new jobs.

State Senator Andy Manar was joined by Adam Pollet, director of the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity; Staunton Mayor Craig Neuhaus; and Tom Schmidt, president of TDS Transport Inc., on Monday to announce the award and plans that will lead to the business' expansion.

The funds mad available through the U.S. Department of Housing and Development will allow the city of Staunton to install water and sewer lines and bulld a street in a location adjacent to TDS Transport Inc.

TDS Transport provides specialized transportation services to the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Department of Homeland Security and companies across the country. Headquartered in Staunton and with offices in New York, Indian and Pennsylvania, the company employs 53 workers and expects to add 13 full-time jobs upon completion of the infrastructure imporvement.

Meth Lab Found In A Rural Church

(Hillsboro)--Two people were arrested in connection to a meth lab at a church in rural Hillsboro. According to the Montgomery County Sheriff's Office, deputies were called on Tuesday about a suspected meth lab located at the Waveland Church in Hillsboro. 53 year old Judith Hemken of Litchfield, and 26 year old Tiffany Burton of Hillsboro were taken into custody.

An investigation by the Montgomery County Sheriff's Office and by the South Central Illinois Drug Task Force led to the seizure of a meth lab inside the church. During the dismantling of the lab, a fire started from the lithium and the moisture of a sink drain. The fire was contained, and no injuries were reported.

Hemken and Burton were taken to the Montgomery County Jail and have been charged with participation of meth manufacturing in a church. Hemken's bond has been set at 200 thousand dollars; Burton's bond has been set at 100 thousand dollars.

Macoupin County Real Estate Taxes

Macoupin County Treasurer Anne Boehm is reminding taxpayers that Tuesday, September 2nd is the due date for the payment of the second installment of real estate taxes in Macoupin County.

The taxes may be paid in the County Treasurer's office, at banks within Macoupin County, with the exception of Carlinville Banks, or by mail. Credit card payments may be made online at

Delinquent taxes will be advertised in local papers the week of October 20th and all delinquent taxes will be sold on November 10th. Taxpayers should contact the Treasurer's office at 217-854-4014 ext 709 if they have any questions.

Single Vehicle Accident Injures Four

(Hillsboro)--Four people were injured in a single vehicle accident Tuesday afternoon on Seven Sisters Avenue in Irving Township. According to the Montgomery County Sheriff's Office, a pick up truck driven by 16 year old Jarod Oakley of Irving was westbound on Seven Sisters Avenue when his truck left the road, traveling through a ditch, striking a tree. Oakley had to be extricated from the vehicle and was airlifted to Memorial Medical Center in Springfield for treatment.

Passengers in the accident were 14 year old Isabel Ysunza, 17 year old Joshua Blankenship, and 16 year old Balin Robbins all from Hillsboro. Ysunza was reportedly trapped underneath the rear of the vehicle and was also extricated. Ysunza and Blankenship were airlifted to Memorial Medical Center in Springfield for treatment. Robbins was also extricated from the pick up. He was airlifted to Cardinal Glennon Children's Hospital for treatment.

The accident remains under investigation.

Macoupin Drive Thru Flu Vaccine Clinic

Residents of Macoupin County are asked to help local agencies test their emergency disaster plan by attending the September 6th flu clinic hosted by the Macoupin County Public Health Department.

Those attending should report to the Macoupin County Fair Grounds between 8am and 11am on Saturday, September 6th. They will then complete required paperwork. The paperwork will be checked for all signatures and participants will be asked to show either their Medicare or Medicaid card or make a $30 payment Participants will then proceed to the final station to receive their flu vaccine.

For this clinic only, particiapants will remain in their cars at all times. Therefore, you are asked to wear short sleeve clothing. Cars with more than two persons should arrive in a four door car.

Only flu vaccines will be given and only to adults (persons age 18 and older). Additional clinics will be annnounced to offer flu vaccines for children along with pneumonia vaccines for appropriate persons.

Blackburn Rededicates Bothwell Auditorium

Lisa Madigan, Illinois Attorney General, will address the Blackburn College Community as they celebrate the completion of a $2.5 millon renovation of Bothwell Conservatory of Music and Auditorium during the All College Convocation August 20, at 4:00pm in Bothwell Auditorium.

Renovations and technology upgrades were made possible by funding from the Illinois College Capital Fund. Bothwell Auditorium and the associated classroom space, constructed in 1970, were completely renovated with state-of-the-art lighting and sound system installations, new seating, flooring, acoustic wall covering and stage curtains. The auditorium is the college's performance venue and provides valuable instructional opportunities for the growing Performing Arts Department.

The venue is also used by The Summer Repertory Theatre at Blackburn College, an independent, non-profit organization that stages several performances during the year, involving actors and crew members from Carlinville and the surrounding communities.

Stolen Car Found In Hillsboro

(Hillsboro)--A 19 year old Pana man was arrested in Hillsboro for the possession of a stolen car. According to Hillsboro Police, 19 year old Devon Gatons of Pana was arrested Saturday morning. Reportedly, a Hillsboro Police Officer spotted a vehicle that was reported stolen. Gatons was stopped on Smith Road near Hayes Abrasives.

Gatons was taken to Montgomery County Jail on charges of possession of a stolen vehicle. A passenger, 35 year old Rebecca Brooks of Nokomis, was released at the scene.

Accident Kills Staunton Resident

A Staunton resident was killed and another person was injured in a single vehicle accident Saturday night northeast of Gillespie.

According to the Macoupin County Coroner's Office, 18 year old Christopher Mitchell of Staunton was pronounced dead at the scene of the accident at 8:28pm by Chief Deputy Coroner Anthony Kravanya.

The accident occured on Henderson Road near Sunset Road in Cahokia Township.

Another person in the vehicle reportedly sustained serious injuries and was taken to St. Francis Hospital in Litchfield and later transferred to a Springfield hospital. Their identity has not been released at this time.

Fatal Accident Near Assumption

(Taylorville)--A 24 year old Moweaqua man was killed in a single vehicle accident Wednesday afternoon in Assumption Township. According to the Christian County Sheriff's Office, 911 received a call about the accident south of Assumption. 24 year old Brandon Kraus of Moweaqua was westbound on Township Road 900 North when he lost control of his 1998 Chevrolet Blazer.

The vehicle overturned, resulting in Kraus and passenger 23 year old Allannah Wilderman of Pana being ejected from the vehicle. Kraus was pronounced dead at the scene by the Christian County Coroner's Office. Wilderman was taken by ambulance to Pana Community Hospital, then airlifted to Memorial Medical Center in Springfield for treatment.

The accident is under investigation.

Macoupin Property Tax Sale

Macoupin County has completed tax deed proceedings on real estate properties that were delinquent for 2010 and prior real estate taxes. The County, as Trustee, will now offer for sale the real estate obtained to the public. They will offer approximately 131 items through a sealed bid auction sale. All sealed bids must be in the Macoupin County Treasurer's Office no later than the close of business on September 5, 2014.

The required minimum bid is $665.00 per item. All items will be sold to the highest sealed bid received on or before September 5, 2014. Complete bidder's packets and sale catalogs are now available at the Macoupin County Treasurer's Office or online at

Rappe Resigns From Hillsboro City Council

(Hillsboro)--The resignation of Hillsboro Commissioner Mike Rappe was accepted during the Hillsboro City Council meeting Tuesday night. In his letter, Rappe thanked the city council and its workers for all of their help. Rappe recently was appointed to the County Board and Review.

Kyle Putnam from Patton and Company gave the cities annual audit report. According to Putnam, the city did a good job of holding its own. She said that revenues were stagnant from previous years. However, water and sewer rates remained steady. In a positive, Putnam added that the city received close to twelve thousand dollars in video gaming revenue.

The Hillsboro City Council also had a long discussion regarding a dog problem and loitering problem in the city. The council agreed to look into the issues.

Police Chase Leads To Arrest

(Litchfield)--An Arizona man was arrested following a chase with authorities. According to Illinois State Police, 29 year old Micheal Broersma of Peoria, Arizona was driving at 1980 Corvette near Litchfield last Tuesday. Illinois State Police Troopers, and the Litchfield Police Department attempted to stop Broersma, but were unable.

A chase ensued, with speeds reaching up to 100 miles per hour. Broersma lost control and crashed near a curve heading into Staunton. The vehicle caught on fire. Broersma was taken to St. Francis Hospital for treatment of injuries. During testing at the hospital, Broersma escaped the hospital into the woods east of the facility. He then went through a bean field. Broersma was taken into custody a short time later.

He was cited with felony counts of escaping a police officer, aggravated fleeing of a police officer, speeding of more than thirty five miles per hour over the posted speed limit, and with reckless driving.

Macoupin County 4-H at State Fair

More than 2,500 different 4-H members are at the Illinois State Fair to present their award-winning project work from August 8 until August 11 at three separate locations on the fairgrounds.

Macoupin County will be represented by forty-nine 4-H members and they will be exhibiting projects such as Sewing and Textiles, Fashion Revue, Cooking, Health, Photography, Visual Arts, Electricity, Robotics, Natural Resources, Horticulture, Woodworking and Interior Design.

The public is invited to view the exhibits from 9am until 4pm daily August 8 through August 11 in the Exposition Buuilding, the 4-H tents in Happy Hollow and the Illinois Building.

An additional 1,500 4-H youth will exhibit livestock throughout the 10 days of the state fair.

Fatal Accident at Southwestern High School

A construction worker was killed Monday when he fell from the gym roof at Southwestern High School.

According to Macoupin County Coroner, Brad Targhetta, 33 year old Jason Dye of Beecher City, IL, was pronounced dead at the scene at 12:07pm.

Reportedly, the man was working on the roof when the fall occured. He worked for Midstate Construction and Roofing Company of Beecher City.

The Department of Labor/OSHA is investigating the incident.

Medora Ambulance and the Macoupin County Sheriff's Office also responded to the scene.


MJM Electric Cooperative's board of directors has selected Laura Cutler as the Cooperative's new president and CEO.

Since 2010, Cutler has been working for the Cooperative. She began as MJM's office manager and most recently held the title of director of finance and administration. During her time at MJM, Cutler has played a vital role in modernizing the office and helping it become more effcient. She led projects for the Cooperative such as converting to an updated billing and accounting system, streamlining payment transactions, becoming able to accept credit/debit cards, and more. Recently, Cutler received her National Rural Electric Cooperative Association supervisor certification, and she has been trained in the subjects of capital credits, human resources/benefits, and the duties of a chief financial officer.

Previously, Cutler worked for 16 years as the accountant for Shelby Electric Cooperative.


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