Headlines for Tuesday, June 28th

Edwards County Treasurer Debbie Smith says 2022 Mobile Home Taxes are due July 29th; a late fee of $25 will be added to any unpaid taxes on July 30th, and an additional $25 fee will be added every month the tax is delinquent. Payment will be accepted in Smith’s office in the Edwards County Courthouse, by mail to 50 East Main Suite 11 in Albion, or in the drop box on the northeast corner of the courthouse. When using the drop box, people should be sure to include their name and phone number. Anyone with questions can call Smith’s office at 445-3581.

Illinois State Police District 19 Commander Captain Nathan Douglas has announced the ISP will conduct Alcohol Countermeasure Enforcement patrols in Wayne County next month. The patrols will allow the ISP to focus on preventing, detecting, and taking enforcement action in response to violations associated with impaired driving and illegal transportation or consumption of alcohol or drugs. Captain Douglas has also announced the ISP will conduct Roadside Safety Checks in Hamilton County next month.

No injuries were reported after a train derailment in Mt. Carmel Sunday afternoon. Mt. Carmel police say a train blocked the crossings at Second and Walnut streets at around 1 p.m.; transportation officials worked to find a safe point to disconnect and reverse the train, and travelers in the area were advised to find alternate routes. No further information on the incident was immediately available.

The Young Leader Committee of the White County Farm Bureau will hold its 2022 Youth Pedal Pull at the White County 4-H Fair on July 13th. The event will begin at 3:30 beside the Floral Hall Pavilion. All area youth, including those not in 4-H are invited to participate. Registration will begin at 3 p.m. on the 13th, and the event is anticipated to last about one hour. More information can be found at whitecfb.com/pedalpull.

Federal District Court Judge Sue Myerscough denied a preliminary injunction last week for the recently passed law requiring gas stations to post signs on pumps detailing the suspension of the scheduled fuel tax increase this summer. Parties say she made the decision without hearing oral arguments from either party.

The Illinois Primary Election will take place today. Early voting began May 19th, and Wayne and Edwards counties had solid participation with that opportunity. Voting hours today will last until 7. We’ll have primary election coverage tonight on 104.9 WFIW starting at 7. We will break in to station programming every 15 to 20 minutes with local and state updates until all Wayne and Edwards County precincts are in.

The Edwards County School Board met in special session last night at the West Salem Grade School. Members discussed a plan to continue work on the proposed parking lot project at a cost of $250,320, or to spend additional money for rock and dirt work to shore up an area where the lot is to be located. The additional work would bring the overall project cost to about $305,000. After discussion and an examination of the area in question, the board voted 4-2 to spend the additional money, with members Brian Mewes and Jo Rector voting no. The parking lot just south of the West Salem Grade School will be concreted in the coming weeks.

The Fairfield City Council will meet tonight at 6 with a full agenda. Aldermen are set to discuss an agreement with IDOT for a Street Paving Project, and they will also revisit a discussion on a bid for a salt storage shed. The agenda then calls for approval of an ordinance concerning security light installation and service fees.

Last month was drier and warmer than one year ago. At the WFIW/WOKZ studios, we recorded two inches and five hundredths of rain in May, with a single-day high of 42 hundredths of an inch on the 20th. Last May, we recorded just under two and a quarter inches of rainfall. The average high for May was 77.5 degrees, with a high temperature of 91 on the 11th. Last year, the average high was 74.9, with a high temperature of 89.

The IDPH reported 11 new cases of COVID-19 in Wayne County since Friday afternoon. Marion County added 39 cases on the state website, Jefferson County 24, Lawrence County 17, Richland County 15, Clay and Hamilton counties nine, White County eight, Edwards County four, and Wabash County two. As a state, Illinois announced 9,904 new cases and 22 additional deaths.

Voter turnout may be difficult to predict this year. Per the State Board of Elections, turnout for a mid-term primary in Illinois is typically around 27 percent, but several factors may impact that number this year. The primary has been shifted back several months, and the governor’s race could also be interesting to watch; in 2014, with a Democratic incumbent in the Governor’s Mansion and several Republicans running for the position, more GOP voters went to the polls, and Democrats had a reduced turnout.

The Illinois High School Association has reversed course for its football playoff format in classes 1A through 6A. Last February, it had announced a format change where each class would be seeded 1 through 32, but IHSA Executive Director Craig Anderson says they have changed their minds. 7A and 8A brackets will be seeded 1 through 32, but all lower classes will feature two, 1 through 16 brackets.

Illinois Farm Bureau Senior Economist Mike Doherty says there doesn’t appear to be any significant relief in sight on input costs like anhydrous and potash. He participated recently in a Kansas State University webinar. He also indicated the webinar predicted crude oil prices will remain at or above the $100 mark, even if the Russia-Ukraine situation is resolved.

River stages as of this morning:  the Little Wabash east of Fairfield stands at 11.89 feet, below the 17 ft. flood stage. Meanwhile, the Skillet Fork at Wayne City has a reading of 5.35 feet (flood stage is 15 ft.). The Little Wabash below Clay City is at 8.24 feet (flood stage is 18 ft.). Bonpas Creek at Browns reads 1.55 feet, and the Little Wabash at Main Street in Carmi reads 10.39 feet. The Wabash River at Mt. Carmel sits at 4.77 feet.

Today’s crude oil price is $101.50, up $1.00 from yesterday. The August crude oil price is $110.79, up $7.29 from yesterday morning.