Headlines for Sunday, November 8, 2015

An Effingham doctor has been sentenced to two years in federal prison as a result of drug convictions. 61-year-old Naeem Mahmood Kohli operated the Kohli Neurology and Sleep Center. He was found guilty January 27th on seven counts of illegally dispensing Schedule II Controlled Substances to patients who suffered from drug addiction. Kohli was also ordered to pay $10,500 in fines, forfeit his office building as well as $34, 419.72 in cash, and complete three years of supervised release.

The Illinois Department of Public Health announced this week it has approved 3,300 patients to use medical marijuana in the state’s pilot program. That includes 20 children. The department began mailing official identification cards to registered patients and caregivers Friday. Program Director Joseph Wright says sales should begin soon and a date would be announced. Qualifying patients pay an annual fee of $100 for a marijuana card and need a doctor’s written certification. Illinois is among 23 states that allow medical use of marijuana.

Beginning January 1, 2016, it will be against the law to leave pets outside in extreme temperatures in Illinois. Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner signed legislation which makes it against the law to leave pets in hot and cold weather that will cause them injury or death. If a pet is hurt or dies as a result of being left in extreme weather, a pet owner can now be charged with a Class A misdemeanor punishable by up to a $2500 fine or up to one year in jail if they are found guilty.

Animals Requesting Friends is reminding Wayne County residents that if your pet doesn’t have proper shelter and you’re a low-income pet guardian or free-roaming cat caregiver in Wayne County, a straw-stuffed dog house can be provided for your pet from ARF’s “Roof Over Your Woof” program. ARF’s dog houses are custom built at Southern Illinois Lumber Company in Fairfield and will require a $50 refundable deposit upon delivery. For dog house or straw delivery, call 842-2241. To contribute to the program or sponsor a dog house from Southern Illinois Lumber, please mail your donation to ARF, P.O. Box 324, Fairfield, IL 62837 or visit www.arfcares.org. ARF is a not-for-profit 501c3, all volunteer organization. Your donation is tax deductible.

The Fairfield Rural Fire Department will have a pork chop dinner today at the Mill Shoals station from 11:00 a.m.- 1:00 p.m. The menu will also consist of green beans, scalloped potatoes, roll and dessert. Cost is by donation and all proceeds will be used for new firefighting equipment.