Headlines for Monday, May 24th

Fairfield Mayor Mike Dreith says IDOT notified the city late last week that the resurfacing project for Route 15 through Fairfield has been pushed back. The engineer in charge of the work said additional design and acquisitions issues caused the change, and the project is now tentatively set for November bidding, with work starting in 2022.

The Fairfield City Council will meet tomorrow at City Hall, with action beginning at 5:50 with a public hearing for an exchange of real estate. Aldermen are then scheduled to work through a number of business items, such as an ordinance revising the liquor code and appointments to a number of boards, including the Zoning Board and Board of Fire and Police Commissioners. City-Council-5-25-21

The Wayne County Misfits Car Show had 131 entries at its Saturday event at Leo French Park in Fairfield, and several awards were given out in multiple categories. Bob and Carol Spore were two-time winners with their 1964 Plymouth Fury, receiving the Orphan and Mopar awards. Photos from the show can be viewed on the WFIW Facebook page.

The “Remember Our Fallen” ride will stop and eat lunch at Gillard’s Hardware in Grayville at approximately 1 Tuesday. The ride is similar to the “Run for the Wall,” and a group of veterans will ride across the country for awareness of their POW and MIA peers. This will be the first time an event has stopped in Grayville, as the normal stop for such rides is in Mt. Vernon. The public is invited to come by the area around 1 tomorrow to watch the procession from the Interstate off-ramp to the hardware store.

Flora native John Powless, former head coach of the Wisconsin Badgers men’s basketball team and a top-ranked senior tennis player, died last week at the age of 88. Born in Flora in 1932, he held the top spot in the 85 and older category in International Tennis Federation rankings as recently as 2018 and was an inductee to the United States Tennis Hall of Fame.

The Greater Fairfield Area Chamber of Commerce has named Brad Jesop as the winner of the 2021 Outstanding Community Service Award. He and Zurliene Enterprises, the 2021 Business of the Year, will be honored at the annual Chamber Dinner, which has been set for October 4th. Executive Director Marti Garner says the location and speakers are still being finalized.

Illinois State Police say 21-year-old Richmond, Missouri, resident Rachel G. Paul was hospitalized after a single-car accident on Interstate 64 in Wayne County yesterday afternoon. She reportedly struck a guardrail and came to rest in a wooded area of the median. Her vehicle caught fire, but she was able to escape beforehand with non-life-threatening injuries.

The Wayne County Farm Bureau says the Howl at the Moon dueling piano show will stop at the Willow Creek Venue on July 31st, and tickets go on sale June 1st. A table of eight tickets is $200, individual reserve tickets are $30, and VIP reserve tickets are $50. Attendees must be 21, and, once sales begin, tickets can be purchased at the Farm Bureau office from 8 to 4:30 weekdays.

The Egyptian Health Department announced three new cases of COVID-19 in White County yesterday, bringing its total to 1,811. Wayne County did not release an update yesterday, and its last reported total number of cases was 1,788. The state Department of Public Health announced 943 new cases of COVID-19 yesterday and 24 additional deaths. Statewide totals sat at 1,375,508 cases and 22,623 deaths. The Southern Region had a positivity rate of 1.6 percent on May 20th, up from 1.5 percent on the 19th.

Chris Miller, with the National Weather Service, says the group is working to reset its counting data, even as the government resets its counting states with the census. He says they compare their normal data to a 30-year period, and it’s now time to reset the 30-year “normal.” Temperatures in the last 30 years have increased a bit, and Miller points out that is particularly noticeable in the winter.

A bill pending the Illinois Senate would require high school students to be taught about media literacy. Senator Karina Villa of West Chicago is the bill sponsor, and she says the new material would piggyback with a required course in computer literacy. The unit would be developed by each school district and would include lessons on creating media and getting information from multiple sources.

Illinois State Police are investigating an early morning shootout in Red Bud in southwestern Illinois. Police in Red Bud responded to a call of gunfire around 1:40 yesterday morning, and they allege a male suspect shot an officer, and a second officer then shot and fatally wounded the man. The injured officer was shot in the calf and released from the hospital. No further information was released.

River stages as of this morning:  the Little Wabash east of Fairfield stands at 12.41 feet, below the 17 ft. flood stage. Meanwhile, the Skillet Fork at Wayne City has a reading of 5.22 feet (flood stage is 15 ft.). The Little Wabash below Clay City is at 7.83 feet (flood stage is 18 ft.). Bonpas Creek at Browns reads 1.65 feet, and the Little Wabash at Main Street in Carmi reads 9.61 feet. The Wabash River at Mt. Carmel sits at 10.74 feet.

Today’s crude oil price is $56.50, up $1.50 from Friday. The June crude oil price is $64.54, up $2.84 from Friday morning.