The snow had been in the forecast all week, and last night it came.  Greenville received more snow than many of the surrounding areas.  Totals at 6AM this morning were 2.5 inches at the Sewer Plant, and 3 inches at 6th street and 3 inches at Idler and route 140.  And with more snow continuing to fall into the late morning those totals will go up.  Many area schools, including all schools in Bond County were closed today.  The Illinois State Police worked 7 accidents overnight when the snow fall was at its heaviest.  This afternoon the accumulating snow should be over, but winds will reach 10-15 MPH and gust up to 25 MPH so drifting and blowing snow is a concern.  And with temperatures will below freezing slick spots on roads, bridges and overpasses could be a danger.  Please allow more time for any travel and allow more distance to stop.   Stay tuned to WGEL Radio 101.7FM for all local closing and cancellations.    


January 8 at the Greenville VFW, the Marine Corps League gathered to install new officers for 2011.  We interviewed outgoing Commandant Herb Knobeloch of Mascoutah, who said their organization has been involved with many community projects in the past year such as Toys for Tots, Toys for Joy, and cash donations to the therapeutic writing center.  They also provide escort and flag ceremonies during funerals of fallen military heroes.  They recently honored five men killed during their tour of duty. Saturday evening, Ron Burns Sr. from Lebanon was sworn in as this year’s Marine Corps Lincoln land Leathernecks League Commandant for Detachment 1174.


If lawmakers in Springfield have their way, taxpayers in Illinois could be facing a 75% increase on their personal income taxes.  Currently, taxpayers pay 3%, but the new rate will be 5.75% if the proposal passes both chambers in Springfield.  This proposal is the Illinois Democrats’ plan to pay off the state’s $13 billion debt.  Senate president John Cullerton says the increase will generate 6.2 billion dollars a year for the next 4 years.  If the proposal passes, an individual who paid $1,000 in taxes will now pay $1,750, nearly double the current income tax rate.


Nominations are now being accepted for the Second Annual Governor’s Volunteer Service Awards.  These awards recognize individual volunteers through a state-wide award program to highlight the importance of community service in Illinois. Individual awards will be presented to one youth age 18 and under, adult 19-55 years old, and retiree/senior 55 years and older in each of five service regions.  Nominations are due to Serve Illinois by January 28.  Visit the website www.serve.illinois.gov for forms and information.  Recipients will be selected and notified by March 6 and honored at a luncheon April 6 at the Executive Mansion in Springfield.


The Illinois Department of Public Health is reporting flu activity has increased to the regional level in Illinois but the flu is not yet widespread.  IDPH Director Dr. Damon T. Arnold said, “Typically, flu season peaks in January and February and it is not too late to get a flu shot.”  The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports an ample supply of influenza vaccine nationwide.  Flu symptoms include high fever, headache, extreme tiredness, dry cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, and muscle aches.  To reduce the spread of the flu, remember to practice the three C’s.  Clean – properly wash your hands frequently, Cover – cover your cough and sneeze, and Contain – contain your germs by staying home if you are sick. The Bond County Health Department has flu vaccine available for adults and children. Adult walk-ins are welcomed and to schedule vaccinations or for more information, call 664-1442.


Last August, St. Joseph’s Hospital in Highland announced plans to build a new hospital.  A building site has now been chosen and 72.4 acres of land acquired.  The new St. Joseph’s Hospital will be approximately one mile north of the present facility at the intersection of North Poplar Street and Troxler Avenue directly east of Highland High School.  WGEL spoke with Randy Schorfheide, Director of Community Relations for St. Joseph’s who said hospital leadership began investigating four-six prospective locations in June with special consideration given to access, visibility, and acreage.  The chosen site is situated among three major traffic corridors that local residents and travelers use on a daily basis.  Hospital administration will now seek approval from the Illinois Health Facilities and Services Review Board with groundbreaking planned for spring 2012.  The new hospital is scheduled to be completed by 2013.



Agnes M. Korte, age 79, of Breese, passed away Saturday, January 8 at Aviston Countryside Manor. A funeral Mass of Christian burial will be Tuesday, at 11:00 a.m. at St. Dominic Church in Breese. Burial will be in St. Dominic/St. Augustine Cemetery. Friends may call Monday, from 4:00 to 8:00 p.m. and Tuesday, from 9:00 to 11:45 a.m. at Moss Funeral Home in Breese. The Daughters of Isabella will recite the Rosary at 7:00 p.m. Monday at the funeral home. Memorials are suggested to St. Dominic Church, St. Joseph Hospital Lights for Scholarship, or Mater Dei High School.


LeNore M. “Tommy” Jerden, age 91, of Highland, passed away Saturday, January 8 at St. Joseph Hospital in Highland. There will be no funeral services. Friends may call Sunday, from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. at the Highland Holiday Inn Express. Spengel-Boulanger Funeral Home in Highland is in charge of the arrangements.


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