Headlines for Thursday, January 6th

Fairfield Community High School Theater leaders have announced the cast list for the spring production of “Mamma Mia!” Directors Colin McDuffee and Donna Reever say 15 students auditioned on November 30th and December 1st, performing a song and a monolog. Rehearsals for the production are set to begin this month, and show performances are set for April 1st and 2nd. Cast members include Ella Mayes (Donna Sheridan); Madeline Foster (Sophie Sheridan); Maverick Lyons (Sam Carmichael); Connor Atteberry (Sky); Cale Simpson (Harry Bright); Gabe Todd (Bill Austin); Riley Hedden (Tanya Cresham); Avery Stence (Rosie Mulligan); McKenna Fraley (Ali); Madeline Edwards (Lisa); Trenton Mason (Pepper); and Mae Gruen, Riley Hollinger, Jesse Crawford, and Katelyn Crawford as the Ensemble.

FCHS says all gate proceeds for the boys basketball matchup tomorrow night against Lawrenceville will go to the family of Deputy Sean Riley, and Peoples National Bank has committed to match the donation. In addition, everyone in attendance is encouraged to wear blue.

Fairfield police arrested 23-year-old Brody J. Roberts early yesterday morning in the 600 block of West King Street. He was wanted on a Wayne County warrant for criminal damage to property. Roberts was taken to the Jefferson County line and remanded to a Jefferson County deputy, who took him to the Jefferson County Jail. Roberts was held, pending the posting of $750 bond.

Wayne County Treasurer Donna Masterson reminds county taxpayers of upcoming property tax dates. 735 certified delinquent letters are set to be mailed tomorrow, and publication will be on the 20th. Installment due dates have passed, but people can still make late payments. The tax sale will be on February 9th. Anyone with questions can call Masterson’s office at 842-5087.

The Illinois Department of Children and Family Services is mourning the loss of an investigator who was stabbed to death Tuesday afternoon. 36-year-old Deidre Silas was responding to a report of children in danger at a home in Thayer when she was killed. At least six kids were in the home but were not injured. 32-year-old Benjamin Reed, who reportedly lived at the residence, has been arrested and charged with first-degree murder.

Illinois lawmakers passed a bill yesterday to redraw judicial subcircuit maps in Cook County and some collar counties, while creating new subcircuits in several additional counties in central and northern Illinois. The bill passed both the House and Senate along party lines. Democrats say the idea has been on the table since the General Assembly passed a law mandating redrawing existing subcircuits after the 2020 Census. They say the bill does not add any new judges to the trial court system, but it changes the way some are elected.

The Greater Fairfield Area Chamber of Commerce says it is accepting nominations for the annual Business of the Year and Community Service awards through February 4th. Nominations can be made by calling the Chamber at 842-6116, writing it at 121 East Main Street, through the Fairfield IL Chamber of Commerce Facebook page, emailing chamber@fairfieldilcitygov.us, or in person at the Chamber office. The Annual Chamber Dinner is scheduled for March 1st.

The Fairfield Fire Department has released details on a Monday morning fire at a residence at 501 West College Street owned by Shirley Wilkerson. At approximately 11:36, firemen were dispatched for smoke coming from the residence, and they arrived on-scene two minutes later. They entered the home to find a fire in the living room area and safely evacuated one adult and three children. Wayne County Ambulance personnel checked the occupants and released them on-scene

Portions on the listening area south of Wayne County, including White and Hamilton counties, are under a winter weather advisory today until 4 p.m. Snow accumulation of one to three inches is possible, and the highest amounts are anticipated to be across western Kentucky. People should plan on slippery road conditions, which could impact commutes.

The Wayne City Village Board met Monday night and approved the purchase of a gas, water, and sewer program to input forms and maps electronically for the village. The board discussed residents in one area of Wayne City who keep flushing inappropriate items and damaging sewer pumps. It decided to send a new letter stressing the importance of the issue one final time before other action is taken, such as potential charges for the repairs or other financial moves.

The Wayne County Health Department announced 39 new cases of COVID-19 from Friday through Sunday, bringing its total to 3,646; 199 people were in isolation. Wabash County added 117 cases in the past week and sat at 2,547; eight people were hospitalized, and 129 were in isolation. White County reported 39 new cases yesterday morning, and Jefferson County reported 85. The state Department of Public Health announced 32,279 new cases and 79 additional deaths. Statewide totals sat at 2,295,445 cases and 28,156 deaths. The Southern Region had a seven-day positivity rate of 12.9 percent on the 2nd, up from 12 percent on the 1st.

Karl Setzer with Agrivisor says he expects more volatility in 2022 in commodity markets, especially in the first three-to-six months in relation to South America, South American weather, and other outside markets. He says the market is also awaiting the next World Ag Supply and Demand Estimates report, which is set to be released on Wednesday.

Illinois Attorney General Kwame Raoul is highlighting several new state laws. One lets victims of human trafficking take advantage of the state’s Address Confidentiality Program, providing them with further protection. That was previously only available to domestic violence survivors. Another increases the amount of money available to victims of a violent crime to cover things like medical bills and lost wages.

River stages as of this morning:  the Little Wabash east of Fairfield stands at 23.59 feet, above the 17 ft. flood stage. Meanwhile, the Skillet Fork at Wayne City has a reading of 6.11 feet (flood stage is 15 ft.). The Little Wabash below Clay City is at 15.83 feet (flood stage is 18 ft.). Bonpas Creek at Browns reads 9.89 feet, and the Little Wabash at Main Street in Carmi reads 24.48 feet. The Wabash River at Mt. Carmel sits at 19.86 feet.

Today’s crude oil price is $70.75, up $0.75 from yesterday. The February crude oil price is $78.03, up $1.27 from yesterday morning.