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Local News Archives for 2016-10

Rotary Halloween Parade

The 77th Annual Carlinville Rotary Halloween Parade will be held Saturday, October 29 at 6:15pm.

This year' theme is "The Wonderful World of Disney". Grand Marshals of the parade are Debbie Kish Starr and Jim Starr.

The parade will form on the west side of the Carlinville Plaza and follow Rt. 4 down North Broad to the Square and onto East Main where it will disassemble on North East Street west of the courthouse. Costume judging will be held at City Hall.

Woman Dies in Car Accident Friday Afternoon


A 25-year old woman is dead after an accident occurred on Route 48 in Christian County on Friday afternoon.

According to the state police, a vehicle driven by a 27-year old man from Normal was traveling north on Route 48 when he turned into the southbound lanes and struck a vehicle, being driven by a 28-year old Taylorville man. The passenger of the vehicle that was struck, a 25-year old female whose identity has not been released, was taken to a local hospital where she was pronounced dead.

The driver of the vehicle she was in was taken to a local hospital for injuries, while the driver of the other vehicle was airlifted to a hospital.

Sutton Ambulance, Dunn's Ambulance and Arch Air Medical Services all assisted at the scene.

Missing 14-Year Old Girl Found in Garage


A 14-year old girl from Christian County who was reported missing last week has been found.

Thanks to an observant citizen and a quick call to Christian County Sheriff Bruce Kettelkamp, Tera Evanchak was found at approximately 6 p.m. Friday, October 14. Tera was seen coming from a house and going into a garage. She was found by Christian County Sheriff's Deputies hiding in the corner of the garage.

The garage is located approximately three blocks from Tera's residence in Langleyville. From evidence found inside the garage, it appeared that she had been staying inside the garage since her disappearance the evening of October 9.

Woman Injured in Friday Accident on I-55


One person was hurt in an accident that occurred Friday, October 14 involving two semis.

According to the state police, a semi driven by Jasmin Puscul, 28, of Chicago, was northbound in I-55 when she attempted to avoid striking the rear of another semi, driven by Eugene Miller, 36, of Jasper, Indiana. Traffic was slowed because of an incident that occurred near milepost 95. Puscul's attempt to avoid Miller's semi was unsuccessful as she struck the rear of the vehicle. Her semi then rolled onto its side into the ditch.

The right lane of I-55 northbound near mile marker 95 was closed for several hours while emergency crews cleared the wreckage. Puscul was transported to a local hospital for treatment.

Hillsboro Amends Mayor Pro-Tem Ordinance


At the Hillsboro City Council meeting Tuesday, October 11, the council addressed an ordinance that defines which commissioner would take over as Mayor Pro-Tem in the event that the Mayor is unable to perform his or her duties.

Under the ordinance, the Commissioner of Streets and Public Improvements serves as the Mayor Pro-Tem. However, as Mayor Brian Sullivan stated, in the past, the Commissioner of Finance has more commonly held the position.

"The finance commissioner has the best handle on the stability of the city and what's going on within the city. They also have certain powers that no other commissioner has, like signing checks and certain things like that that the mayor does. It makes the most sense for that person to step into it."

Commissioner Don Downs expressed his opposition, citing logistical reasons.

"What if the finance commissioner at some point and time worked on the other side of St. Louis? I'm just trying to make it to where it's more functional."

Mayor Sullivan said he understood Downs's concerns, and if the council would rather it be done another way, they could explore that. The council voted on the Mayor's appointment, and the motion passed 3 to 1 with Commissioner Downs being the lone "no" vote.

Montgomery County Board Renews Health Insurance


For the second consecutive month, health insurance for Montgomery County employees was a much debated topic at the county board meeting Tuesday morning.

At the meeting, Personnel Committee Chairman Mary Bathurst informed the board that the committee had received an amended offer from Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois, the county's current health insurance provider. Blue Cross Blue Shield had originally presented an offer prior to the board voting to open up bids from the market at the September meeting. The current premium to the county from the company is $1,253,427. After opening up bids, Blue Cross Blue Shield improved their offer to $1,219,380.

Bathurst said that while the change wasn't earth-shattering, it was still an improvement. She then made the motion to have the board approve the new offer so that county employees could be covered in time for the renewal date of December 1. Her reasoning behind the motion was inspired by the impression she received from county employeese after informing them of the process of opening up the market prior to Blue Cross submitting an amended offer.

"In talking to the employees," Bathurst said, "as an individual myself, I was coming to the conclusion that certainty of the numbers was better than not knowing anything and having two weeks to deal with it."

An emotional Finance Committee Chairman Megan Beeler, who had been working with the personnel committee as a joint effort to obtain the best plan, expressed her opposition to the motion, stating that she felt it was the duty of the board to seek out every option.

"The reason for going out for bids was the board's obligation to do our due diligence and to look under every stone for the best break we could get for the county - our obligation to the taxpayer but also our obligation to the county employees. I talked to those employees in the same meetings and, yes, they are concerned with the dates and the uncertainty; but those same employees are also facing the fact that they might not have a paycheck to take home with the rate changes they are facing in these policies. How can we say that we have done everything we could to bring them the best rate possible? How can we tell the taxpayers that we did everything we could - that we looked everywhere we could? We have an obligation. We are elected officials. We have a job to do."

The board deliberated for an hour, causing many of the members to express their feelings, before finally taking a vote. The motion ultimately passed, narrowly, by an 11 to 9 margin.

Bremer Sanctuary to Host 2 October Events


Bremer Sanctuary just outside of Hillsboro has announced a couple of events they will be hosting during the month of October.

First, the public is invited to the annual Owl Prowl and wiener roast at the sanctuary on Thursday, October 13, beginning at 5pm. As soon as darkness falls, resident owls will be called using a recorded barred owl call. Treehouse Rehabilitation Center from Dow will have an owl for release. Those attending are asked to bring their own hot dog or brat and bun of choice, and possibly a desert to share. Bremer Sanctuary volunteers will provide condiments, chips, water and iced tea.

On Saturday, October 29, Bremer will host its annual meeting and potluck dinner. Beginning at 5pm, special guest Mark Glenshaw will speak on his long-term observations of the great horned owl. Glenshaw, an award-winning naturalist, has closely observed an documented the lives of great horned owls in Forest Park in St. Louis since December of 2005.

Bremer Sanctuary is located a half mile north of the Montgomery County Courthouse on North Road. The sanctuary is open to the public year-round from dawn to dusk.

CAH Auxiliary Scholarship

The Carlinville Area Hospital Auxiliary is urging Macoupin County high school students to apply for its Medical Scholarship. The first scholarship was awarded earlier this year and will be awarded again in the spring of 2017 to a deserving senior who plans to enter the medical field at an accredited college or university.

Applications have been sent to every high school in Macoupin County, so they are readily available for students to complete and submit to the Auxiliary no later than March 1, 2017. In addition to the application, the student must a comprehensive list of volunteer and/or community service activities, a typed, one-page essay explaining why he or she wants to pursue a career in the medical field, and two letters of recommendtion. Qualifying candidates also must maintain a grade point average of 3.5 or higher through junior year.

The Medical Scholarship is worth $1,000, with $500 given to the recipient upon acceptance into the accredited college or university and the other $500 sent to the student after the second semester, as long as he or she maintains a 3.0 GPA. The money may be applied to tuition, books, or other related fees.

Voter Registration Deadline October 11


The Montgomery County Clerk's Office reminds citizens that the last day for voter registration or to update registration name or address is Tuesday, October 11. Those wanting to vote in the general election November 8 may register until the deadline.

The County Clerk's Office will open on Saturday, October 8 from 9am to noon at the Historic Courthouse in Hillsboro to register voters and update voter addresses.

To qualify as a voter, one must be a U.S. citizen, be at least 18 years old on or by election day, and be a resident of the precinct for 30 days prior to November 8. Citizens must completely re-register to vote if their name has changed or if they have moved to Montgomery County. If a citizen has moved within the county, they will need to update their registration information.

In addition to the County Clerk's Office, there are deputy registrars available throughout Montgomery County to provide all voter registration services. For more information about the deputy registrars, call 217-532-9530 or stop by the County Clerk's Office on the first floor of the Historic Courthouse.

Early Voting Under Way in Montgomery County


The Montgomery County Clerk's Office has announced that early voting is now open and applications for vote-by-mail ballots may be requested for the November election.

Illinois law's qualification to vote by mail or early is to be an eligible Montgomery County registered voter. Voters may now vote early in person at the county clerk's early voting center, located in the basement of the Historic Courthouse on the Hillsboro Square. Voters who wish to have a ballot mailed to them may mail in a vote-by-mail application, which can be found on the Montgomery County Clerk's website at montgomeryco.com. Voters may also call that clerk's office at 532-9530.

A vote-by-mail ballot may also be requested by sending an email with current name and residential address to sandyleithesier@hotmail.com.

All applications for vote-by-mail ballots must be received by the office by Thursday, November 3. For more information about early voting or the upcoming election, you may contact the County Clerk and Recorder's office at the Historic Courthouse in Hillsboro.

St. Francis of Assisi to be Honored with Dinner


Each year, the Feast Day of St. Francis of Assisi is celebrated on October 4th in rememberance of St. Francis, the patron saint of the Hospital Sisters who founded H.S.H.S. St. Francis Hospital in Litchfield.

The Hospital will honor St. Francis with a free Italian meal held in the hospital cafeteria from 11am to 1pm on Tuesday, October 4th. The menu is based on an Italian theme. The hospital will also provide free calendars and prayer cards on the Day of the Feast to provide the community with more information about St. Francis of Assisi.

The meal is free to anyone who would like to attend. Reservations, however, are requested. To RSVP, call Melissa Leonard at 217-324-8597.

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