Sullivan Man Found Dead Friday

Photo by Keith Stewart Sullivan Man Found Dead Friday Ryan J. Benton, 41, of Sullivan was found dead late Friday afternoon. According to Sullivan Police Chief John Love, his department was called to do a welfare check, and upon visiting Benton’s residence at 504 N. Van Buren, found the 41-year-old dead. Benton was pronounced deceased by Moultrie County Coroner Lynn Reed at 4:02 p.m. Friday. Sullivan police and Reed’s office are still conducting an investigation into Benton’s death but say that no foul play is suspected. Love declined to provide comment on a preliminary cause of death and instead said that they are awaiting both autopsy and toxicology reports. Pictured are both Sullivan police and officials from the coroner’s office preparing to enter Benton’s apartment.

Photo by Keith Stewart
Sullivan Man Found Dead Friday
Ryan J. Benton, 41, of Sullivan was found dead late Friday afternoon. According to Sullivan Police Chief John Love, his department was called to do a welfare check, and upon visiting Benton’s residence at 504 N. Van Buren, found the 41-year-old dead. Benton was pronounced deceased by Moultrie County Coroner Lynn Reed at 4:02 p.m. Friday. Sullivan police and Reed’s office are still conducting an investigation into Benton’s death but say that no foul play is suspected. Love declined to provide comment on a preliminary cause of death and instead said that they are awaiting both autopsy and toxicology reports. Pictured are both Sullivan police and officials from the coroner’s office preparing to enter Benton’s apartment.

Yard of July

Submitted WHAT’S Yard of July Windsor’s yard of the month winner is Noel and Gloria Helton. Making good use of perennials and annuals in their flower beds makes this a favorite drive by spot of many in Windsor, and the new log siding on their home has been a long awaited goal. The WHAT group, Windsor’s Happenings Around Town, is a mapping group that is working on beautification of Windsor. The group encourages all residents to beautify their homes and yards. Nominations may be made by stopping by city hall or calling  273-5488.

Submitted
WHAT’S Yard of July
Windsor’s yard of the month winner is Noel and Gloria Helton. Making good use of perennials and annuals in their flower beds makes this a favorite drive by spot of many in Windsor, and the new log siding on their home has been a long awaited goal. The WHAT group, Windsor’s Happenings Around Town, is a mapping group that is working on beautification of Windsor. The group encourages all residents to beautify their homes and yards. Nominations may be made by stopping by city hall or calling 273-5488.

Trashy

Photo by RR Best Trashy Pictured are several televisions that were dumped in a drainage ditch just north of Wyman Park sometime over the weekend. According to Sullivan road district commissioner Elmo Weaver, the televisions were left in the ditch in what appeared to be a result of complications with the Sullivan citywide electronic recycling event which was held Saturday. According to the city, the recycling company was not equipped to handle the large volume of electronics, which citizens brought to be recycled. “They should have taken them back home instead of dumping it on someone else,’ said Weaver. “It’s not right.” The city does plan to hold another electronics recycling day. Information on that event will be provided in the News•Progress once available.

Photo by RR Best
Trashy
Pictured are several televisions that were dumped in a drainage ditch just north of Wyman Park sometime over the weekend. According to Sullivan road district commissioner Elmo Weaver, the televisions were left in the ditch in what appeared to be a result of complications with the Sullivan citywide electronic recycling event which was held Saturday. According to the city, the recycling company was not equipped to handle the large volume of electronics, which citizens brought to be recycled. “They should have taken them back home instead of dumping it on someone else,’ said Weaver. “It’s not right.” The city does plan to hold another electronics recycling day. Information on that event will be provided in the News•Progress once available.

Sullivan Man Formally Charged with Child Pornography Offenses

•July 22, 2015•

Jim Lewis, U.S. Attorney for the Central District of Illinois, announced today that a federal grand jury in Peoria has returned an indictment charging Justen W. Troxell, 30, of the 400 block of South Worth Street, Sullivan, Ill., with distribution and possession of child pornography.
The indictment alleges that in June 2015, Troxell distributed and possessed images and videos of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct. The indictment also seeks forfeiture of computers and related materials allegedly used to commit or promote the offenses. Read More

Okaw Valley Schools Close out FY15 with Deficit

New class schedule also to begin this fall

•July 22, 2015•

by Derek Pope
Bethany Reporter

In time for the closing of fiscal year 2015 on June 30, the Okaw Valley’s administration approved their final estimated ending budget, giving a glimpse into what Okaw Valley School District can expect this next fiscal year, financially.
The budget fell largely in line with what superintendent Kent Stauder had projected months earlier when concerns of state education budget cuts loomed overhead. The district ended their fiscal year with almost $5,2630,000 total in all their various funds, incurring a deficit of roughly $145,000—an increase over last year’s deficit of nearly $59,000. The majority of that deficit came from the district’s operation and maintenance fund, which ended with close to $97,000 less than with what the district began. The operation and maintenance fund pays for the upkeep of school building and grounds as well as the day to day functions needed to keep each school running. This year the district saw several one-time expenditures that affected the operation and maintenance fund, including the recent asbestos abatement and demolition of Okaw Valley Intermediate School in Findlay. Read More

ALAH District Short Another State Payment

Reduction in funding causes change of summer maintenance, insurance policies

•July 22, 2015•

by Ariana Cherry
Arthur/Sullivan Reporter

At their meeting last Wednesday, the Arthur-Lovington/Atwood-Hammond school board discussed being denied a fourth state aid payment and how that looks to impact projects.
“We didn’t receive our fourth payment from the state which equaled about $80,000, ” said Superintendent Kenny Schwingel.
While the district didn’t expect to receive that missed payment from the state, it did still put them short for funding toward extra projects. The district had several projects for summer maintenance that were needing to be done, but because of funding issues, they had to be put on hold for the next school year. The total cost of the maintenance projects was over $105,000, but after taking a second look at the list, it was narrowed down to $70,000. Some of the projects that were put on hold include putting up a second hitching post, new storage shed and repairing/replacing the entrance at Arthur Grade School. Read More

Eagle Creek Task Force Forms

Local officials come together to provide oversight on shuttered resort

•July 15, 2015•

by Keith Stewart
keith@newsprogress.com

A group of local officials and representatives have recently come together to form a task force overseeing the future of the long-shuttered Eagle Creek Resort.
“Some of us locally think we need to have some local control in overseeing it to make sure it continues forward,” said Moultrie County board chairman Dave McCabe. “Everyone has been wanting to get it accomplished for years now, but it never seems to get done.”
Eagle Creek was closed in July of 2009 after mold was detected. Some hope for its reopening surfaced in 2010 when Decatur-based BMDD Resorts Corp. was hired to renovate and reopen the resort. But that hope soon faded last year after the firm pulled out among disagreements with the state over the project, leaving Eagle Creek to once again sit unusable.
“With the way DNR has been prolonging this, I’m not sure whether we can be effective or not,“ said Sullivan Mayor Ann Short who is also a member of the task force. “But if we can accomplish something positive, I’ll be thrilled.” Read More

Golf Outing Winners

Submitted Golf Outing Winners Pictured is winning team from the 21st annual Okaw Valley Academic Foundation golf outing, which was held July 10. From left to right: Andrew Fultz, Joe Fultz, sponsor Jack Scott, Ben Broadbeck, and JC Fultz.

Submitted
Golf Outing Winners
Pictured is winning team from the 21st annual Okaw Valley Academic Foundation golf outing, which was held July 10. From left to right: Andrew Fultz, Joe Fultz, sponsor Jack Scott, Ben Broadbeck, and JC Fultz.

Sullivan Police Asking Public for Help Amid Criminal Vehicle Trespassing

Four unlocked vehicles targeted over weekend

• July 15, 2015 •

by Keith Stewart
keith@newsprogress.com

Sullivan police are asking the public to keep their car doors locked and an eye out for any suspicious activity after a string of unlocked vehicles were illegally entered over the weekend.
Sullivan Police Chief John Love says that four vehicles were the subject of criminal trespass this past weekend, two of which were then taken around town before then being abandoned.
One of the vehicles was found just north of Wyman Park on Worth street and another parked in the middle of a road in front of a stop sign. Read More

Sullivan Woman in Stable Condition After Collision

Victim of DUI wreck in Warrensburg

•July 8, 2015•

by Keith Stewart
keith@newsprogress.com

A Sullivan woman is in stable condition after more than two weeks of being hospitalized following a DUI accident near Warrensburg last month.
Judith McPheeters, 69, of Sullivan endured life-threatening injuries the evening of Wednesday, June 17 following a collision near Warrensburg.
According to a press release by the Macon County sheriff’s department, a call came in at approximately 6:35 p.m. regarding the two-vehicle wreck. Once on scene, responders had to extricate the 69-year-old Sullivan woman from her 2011 Chevrolet after it collided with a 2009 Ford pickup truck, driven by Ryan M. Maurer, 41, of Harristown. Read More