It will be up to residents to decide whether the office of the Bond County Supervisor of Assessments should be filled by election or appointment.

In their meeting Tuesday night, the Bond County Board unanimously agreed to place the issue on the general election ballot in November.  Board member Gerald McCray said enough people had expressed interest in the position being an elected office to put the issue to residents. 

If voters decide the office should be an elected post, the first time it will appear on a ballot would be the 2016 primary.

McCray also told the board that he had talked to Jon Joiner of Joiner Sheet Metal and Roofing regarding the roof at the Bond County Humane Society.  Joiner said the roof was beyond repair and said he would donate the material and labor to completely replace it at no cost to either the Humane Society, or the county, which owns the building.

The board discussed payment of their Southwestern Planning Commission dues – an amount of $5,421. Ultimately they decided to have a representative from the organization come to a future meeting to tell them more about the potential benefits of membership in the Commission.


These beautiful pictures were sent to us by some friends at a radio station in Ohio.  They show a rare phenomenon called ice pillars.

WGEL asked the National Weather Service about ice pillars and they told us ice pillars are indeed rare, as conditions must be just right for them to occur.  Ice pillars are formed when temperatures drop to extremely low temperatures.  What little moisture there is in the atmosphere freezes, causing ice crystals.  Light reflects off the snow on the ground, up to the crystals in the air, forming “ice pillars”.  Against the night sky, the pillars look like multicolored lights extending upwards.

Photos courtesy of Robert Meisse



Kaskaskia College held its thirteenth annual celebration of the life and ideals of Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Tuesday with a fellowship breakfast followed by a program in the Jane Knight Auditorium.

In keeping with tradition at KC, a video of Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech was shown, and its message set the tone for the program to follow.

Dr. James Underwood, President of Kaskaskia College, welcomed the attendees and reinforced the message that “At KC, Everyone is Someone.” Board Chairman Bill Hawley spoke of the urgency for those who witnessed the troubled times of the Civil Rights Movement of Dr. King to pass on those lessons to today’s youth. 

Keynote speaker, Dr. Clara Coleman Rouse, a Centralia native who moved to California some years ago, delivered an address called “The Difference.”  Quoting from Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech, she illustrated how, by outlining his dream of the future, Dr. King was able to change the landscape of race relations in America and set the tone for the reforms that followed. 

Guest speaker Dr. Clara Coleman Rouse

Dr. Rouse said that Dr. King’s most important question is “What are you doing for others?”  Her response is that sometimes it’s not enough to cheer from the sidelines hoping to make a difference; “Sometimes you have to roll up your sleeves and get into the game to be the difference.”

KC Board Members Dr. Dee Boswell, Rev. Tommy Henegar, Dr. Clara Coleman Rouse, KC Board Chairman Bill Hawley, Dr. Jim Underwood, Dr. Greg Labyak, Vice President of Instructional Services for KC; Robert Rhymes, Culinary Arts Professor; Lisa Atkins, Director of Adult Education; and Cathy Karrick, Event Chairman and Director of Public Information for Kaskaskia College.

Photos courtesy of Kaskaskia College



Barring weather issues, there will be fireworks on the 4th of July at Patriot’s Park.

In their monthly meeting Tuesday night, the Bond County Independence Day Festival Association voted to enter into an agreement with Central States Fireworks, of Athens, IL, to provide a fireworks show not to exceed $10,000.

The group also worked on details for their first fundraiser, a trivia night Saturday, February 1 at the Greenville VFW.  Doors at the event open at 6:00 p.m. and the trivia gets underway at 7:00 p.m.  Entry fee for teams is $100 for up to eight people per team.


The Greenville Chamber of Commerce is teaming with the Fayette County Health Department to offer a workshop on promoting healthy habits in the workplace.  The program is Tuesday, February 11 at 8:00 a.m. at Adam Bros. Coffeehouse, 110 S. Second Street.  Kelly Hebenstreit from the Fayette County Health Department will share information on a new initiative called “We Choose Health.” 

Hebenstreit said this grant-funded project hopes to “transform Illinois communities and reduce the burden of chronic disease.”    She will focus on Worksite Wellness but also highlight the other four areas of the initiative:  Smoke-Free Outdoor Spaces, Baby-Friendly Hospitals, Coordinated School Health, and Complete Streets.

The workshop is recommended for business owners, managers, and human resource directors.  Many employers currently utilize variations of worksite wellness programs and have found they increase productivity and lower absenteeism.

The program is free but those attending can enjoy a special breakfast buffet for $6.00. Pre-registration is required by calling the Chamber office at 664-9272.



At the Tuesday meeting of the Mulberry Grove Board of Education, Superintendent Mike Gauch reported the district received the first Transportation payment of $40,868 from the state on a voucher sent in September.  The district also received approximately $8,000 in Bond County tax money.

The district received word Tuesday of approval for a $50,000 matching maintenance grant from the state.  The funds may be used for possible computer technology upgrades.

The board voted to have school on Casmir Pulaski Day and on Thursday, April 17, taking one day from Spring Break.  The move is in response to the use of eight snow days so far this winter.

Graduation is set for Saturday, May 24 with 8th grade graduation at 11:00 a.m. and high school commencement at 2:00 p.m.

Following a closed session, the board hired Mitchell Lewis as assistant high school baseball coach for this year.  They accepted a letter of retirement from Dale Deverick effective at the end of this year and granted maternity leave to Lacy Hollenkamp.  The board approved a request from the senior class for travel days for the senior trip.

The board's next meeting is Tuesday, February 18, at 7:00 p.m.


The City of Greenville Board of Police Commissioners will meet at 9:00 a.m. in the Greenville Municipal Building.  The agenda includes the status of the union agreement, requested waivers of June 2013, results of applicant’s tests, and a review of the annual report.

The City of Greenville Tourism Committee will meet at 5:15 p.m. in the municipal building.  The agenda includes a funding request from the American Farm Heritage Museum, review of the Airstravaganza funding, and a review of the funding policy.


Ray F. Becker

Ray F. Becker, age 87, of Bartelso, passed away Tuesday, January 21 at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Breese.  Funeral services will be Saturday, January 25 at 10:00 a.m. at St. Cecilia Catholic Church in Bartelso.  Burial will be in St. Cecilia Cemetery.  Friends may call Friday from 4:00 to 8:00 p.m. and Saturday from 8:00 to 9:45 a.m. at the church.  Memorials are suggested to St. Cecilia Catholic Church or Mater Dei High School.  The Moss Funeral Home in Breese is in charge of arrangements.

He was born October 13, 1926 in Bartelso, to Henry and Cecilia (Jansen) Becker: they preceded him in death.

He married Sylvia Wolters October 8, 1952 at St. Francis Church in Aviston. She preceded him in death July 11, 1997.

Also preceded in death by a son Mark Becker, brothers Albert “Tossie” Becker, Bill Becker, a sister Mary Ann Rakers.

Surviving are his children Mike (Marilyn) Becker, Charlie (Karla) Becker, Ken (Donna) Becker, Randy Becker, Floyd Becker all of Bartelso.

6 grandchildren Scott Becker, Sarah (Kyle) Albers, Katie (friend Alex Gillispie) Becker, Lauren (Eric) Eversgerd, Aaron Becker, Jordan Becker. He was anticipating the arrival of his first great grandchild.

Siblings; Flo (Paul Dierkes of Germantown, Lucille (Frank) Kampwerth of Carlyle, Herman Becker of Bartelso, Don “Diesel” Becker of Bartelso, Barb (Bob) Robke of Germantown, Richard (Pat) Becker of Bartelso, Toni (George) Litzenburg of Carlyle.

Ray owned and operated Becker Brothers Egg Co. in Germantown

Member of St. Cecilia Catholic Church and was a Eucharistic minister, usher and funeral mass server. Knight of Columbus Council 4745, Bartelso, 50 year member of the Bishop Althoff 4th degree Assembly, Catholic War Veterans, American Legion Post 976, Bartelso, 109 Club, Bartelso.

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