Aikman Wildlife Pulls Special Use Permit

Organizers now looking for another site

July 1, 2015

by Keith Stewart
keith@newsprogress.com

A special use permit filed in May for a zoo near Arthur has been withdrawn.
According to the Moultrie County planning and zoning officer Jan Haegan, James Aikman’s application for a special use permit for his wildlife park was withdrawn Monday afternoon.
Shortly thereafter, a post on the Facebook page Aikman Wildlife Adventure, which James Aikman confirmed as the project’s official page, explained the decision to withdrawal the application, citing the last zoning board of appeals meeting, which concluded with its members not recommending a permit for the zoo.
“The last meeting made it very apparent by the objectors that no matter what we do, nothing will ever be good enough,” read the post. Read More

Miss Moultrie-Douglas 2015 Contestants

Photo by RR Best Miss Moultrie-Douglas Contestants Pictured are the contestants who will compete in the 53rd annual Miss Moultrie-Douglas pageant , which will be held Tuesday, July 7 at 7 p.m. in Arthur. Pictured, from left to right, are this year’s contestants: Kiela Martin, Villa Grove; Becca Greathouse, Arthur; Ashton Doty, Bethany; Lauren Cody, Sullivan; Taylor Reifsteck, Tuscola; 2014 Miss Moultrie-Douglas Maria Meyer, Tuscola; Lexi Sluder, Tuscola; Gabrielle Uphoff, Sullivan; Michelle VanCleave, Tuscola; and Brittany Rader, Lovington. Not Pictured – Morgan Miller, Sullivan; Karla Madden, Newman;  Hannah Leal, Arthur

Photo by RR Best
Miss Moultrie-Douglas Contestants
Pictured are the contestants who will compete in the 53rd annual Miss Moultrie-Douglas pageant , which will be held Tuesday, July 7 at 7 p.m. in Arthur. Pictured, from left to right, are this year’s contestants: Kiela Martin, Villa Grove; Becca Greathouse, Arthur; Ashton Doty, Bethany; Lauren Cody, Sullivan; Taylor Reifsteck, Tuscola; 2014 Miss Moultrie-Douglas Maria Meyer, Tuscola; Lexi Sluder, Tuscola; Gabrielle Uphoff, Sullivan; Michelle VanCleave, Tuscola; and Brittany Rader, Lovington. Not Pictured – Morgan Miller, Sullivan; Karla Madden, Newman; Hannah Leal, Arthur

Photo by RR Best Jr. Miss Moultrie-Douglas Contestants Pictured are the contestants who will compete in the Jr. Miss Moultrie-Douglas pageant , which will be held Monday, July 6 at 7 p.m. in Arthur. Pictured, from left to right, are this year’s contestants: Kali Pierce, Tuscola;Lexie Jaeger, Arcola; Julia Kerkhoff, Tuscola; Calista Clark, Lovington; Sydney Hoel, Tuscola; Janette Comstock, Lovington; Brandi Reinhart, Tuscola; Sidney Edwards, Oakland; 2014 Jr Miss Moultrie-Douglas Kayla Hodge, Arthur; Kenli Nettles, Lovington; Sabrina Alcorn, Tuscola; Emma Lee, Arthur; Faith Hardwick, Tuscola; Madysen Melton, Arcola; Meyha Evans, Arthur; and Logan Streible, Atwood. Not pictured is Kyla Carson, Arthur.

Photo by RR Best
Jr. Miss Moultrie-Douglas Contestants
Pictured are the contestants who will compete in the Jr. Miss Moultrie-Douglas pageant , which will be held Monday, July 6 at 7 p.m. in Arthur. Pictured, from left to right, are this year’s contestants: Kali Pierce, Tuscola;Lexie Jaeger, Arcola; Julia Kerkhoff, Tuscola; Calista Clark, Lovington; Sydney Hoel, Tuscola; Janette Comstock, Lovington; Brandi Reinhart, Tuscola; Sidney Edwards, Oakland; 2014 Jr Miss Moultrie-Douglas Kayla Hodge, Arthur; Kenli Nettles, Lovington; Sabrina Alcorn, Tuscola; Emma Lee, Arthur; Faith Hardwick, Tuscola; Madysen Melton, Arcola; Meyha Evans, Arthur; and Logan Streible, Atwood. Not pictured is Kyla Carson, Arthur.

Photo by RR Best Little Miss Moultrie-Douglas Contestants Pictured are the contestants who will compete in the Little Miss Moultrie-Douglas pageant , which will be held Tuesday, July 7 at 7 p.m. in Arthur. Pictured, from left to right, are this year’s contestants: Top Row-Salina Kimberlin, Sullivan; Lilly Evans, Atwood; Chloe Smith, Hammond; Alyssa Adkins, Tuscola; Morgan Casteel, Lovington; Addison Dixon, Atwood; Sawyer Cleland, Tuscola; and Brooklynn Colter, Arthur; Bottom Row-Aymara Leal, Arcola; Gracelyn Johnson, Sullivan; Anna Rawlins, Pierson Station; Paislee Lorenzen, Newman; 2014 Little Miss Moultrie-Douglas Brynlee Moore, Lovington; Alyssa Ryherd, Sullivan; Emeline Greathouse, Arthur; Aaliyah Osborn, Sullivan; and Emmersyn Jainnoni, Sullivan. Not pictured is Kate Foltz, Tuscola.

Photo by RR Best
Little Miss Moultrie-Douglas Contestants
Pictured are the contestants who will compete in the Little Miss Moultrie-Douglas pageant , which will be held Tuesday, July 7 at 7 p.m. in Arthur. Pictured, from left to right, are this year’s contestants: Top Row-Salina Kimberlin, Sullivan; Lilly Evans, Atwood; Chloe Smith, Hammond; Alyssa Adkins, Tuscola; Morgan Casteel, Lovington; Addison Dixon, Atwood; Sawyer Cleland, Tuscola; and Brooklynn Colter, Arthur; Bottom Row-Aymara Leal, Arcola; Gracelyn Johnson, Sullivan; Anna Rawlins, Pierson Station; Paislee Lorenzen, Newman; 2014 Little Miss Moultrie-Douglas Brynlee Moore, Lovington; Alyssa Ryherd, Sullivan; Emeline Greathouse, Arthur; Aaliyah Osborn, Sullivan; and Emmersyn Jainnoni, Sullivan. Not pictured is Kate Foltz, Tuscola.

Sullivan Council Signs Agreement with Hughes and Tenney Law Firm

Council plans to pursue legal action concerning the Sullivan Civic Center roof

July 1, 2015

by Ariana Cherry
Arthur/Sullivan Reporter

At their June 8 regular meeting, the Sullivan City Council decided they would move forward with litigation concerning the roof of the Sullivan Civic Center.
Problems with the Civic Center roof began back in 2006 when it was decided that a new roofing system would be constructed.
After receiving bids, Advanced Wayne Cain of Champaign, was chosen to start work on the roof in 2007 which would be completed during that spring and summer. Then, in 2013, when it was noticed that the top covering of the roof was loose, Advanced Wayne Cain was called back to help fix it. The roof was secured in order to stop it from blowing and being damaged any further. According to Sullivan commissioner Mike Mossman, it was never completely repaired as it was only secured until it could be permanently fixed. Read More

Sullivan Man Arrested for Child Pornography

FBI make arrest last Thursday

July 1, 2015

by Keith Stewart
keith@newsprogress.com

A 30-year-old Sullivan man was arrested last week after a federal investigation into claims of child pornography.
Justen W. Troxell, 30, of Sullivan was arrested by federal investigators and with the assistance of Sullivan police last Thursday.
According to an affidavit filed with the United States District Court in Urbana, the investigation began on June 21 when a 23-year-old woman in Douglas County contacted the Tuscola Police Department in regard to a child pornography complaint.
The woman told police that she had received a pornographic image on her cell phone from a white male whom she had met on social media and that later appeared to be Troxell according to federal investigators. The image was presented to Tuscola police and was also observed by FBI special agent Brian Schenkelberg, who, in the affidavit, described it as depicting a female child approximately three-five years performing a sex act with an adult male. Read More

ALAH School Board Approves Amended Budget

Influx of money helps, but still short

July 1, 2015

by Ariana Cherry
Arthur/Sullivan Reporter

The Arthur-Lovington/Atwood-Hammond School Board approved an amended budget for 2014-2015 at their last regular board meeting after receiving an unexpected payment of $285,000 from the state.
“We are definitely excited about the additional revenue,” said superintendent Kenny Schwengel.
The district received $121,000 for transportation, $122,900 for special education services and $42,000 from the “adequacy grant.” Although the board received the unexpected funding, the state is still short, sending the district about $225,000 due to the 89% proration (11% cut). “Had we not received that money, we would have been about a half a million short of what we should have received,” explained Schwengel. “We continue to look for opportunities to save money due to the financial outlook in Illinois. Purchases have to be reduced. Staffing will be reduced when possible due to attrition,” he added. As of May 2015, the district’s overall balance stood at $1,128,388.12. Read More

BREAKING: Sullivan Teacher Struck by Vehicle While Jogging Tuesday

Submitted Pictured are emergency personnel meeting with a Life Flight helicopter, which transported Christina Sanders from Arthur to Carle Hospital Tuesday evening after she was stuck by a vehicle in rural Sullivan.

Submitted
Pictured are emergency personnel meeting with a Life Flight helicopter, which transported Christina Sanders from Arthur to Carle Hospital Tuesday evening after she was stuck by a vehicle in rural Sullivan.

Woman in critical condition

July 1, 2015

by Keith Stewart
keith@newsprogress.com
A Sullivan elementary school teacher is in critical condition after being struck by a vehicle Tuesday evening.
Shortly before 7:13 p.m. Tuesday, Christina Sanders, 30, of Sullivan was struck by an automobile while jogging in rural Sullivan according to a press release from the Moultrie County Sheriff’s Department.
The release further adds that the automobile was being driven by Kali Forsyth, 18, of Sullivan. Read More

Lovington Man Stabbed by Son Sunday Night

Taken to St. Mary’s, man in fair condition

June 24, 2015

by Keith Stewart
keith@newsprogress.com

A 24-year old man was arrested after he allegedly stabbed his father at a home in Lovington Sunday night.
Matthew Archer-Newberry, 24, of Lovington was arrested after he stabbed his father Randy Newberry, 54, twice according to a probable cause affidavit by Lovington police officer Jay Clark.
The affidavit explains that Randy Newberry was transported to St. Mary’s hospital for a stab wound to the chest and cuts to his left arm. According to Clark’s statements, Newberry told the Lovington officer that he and his son Matthew were watching television prior to the incident. Archer-Newberry then allegedly went to the kitchen and returned with a knife, which he shoved into the upper left chest area of Randy Newberry. After managing to stand up from the recliner he was in, the 54-year-old was then stabbed again in his left inner forearm. Read More

The Bakery is Back

Photo by RR Best JoBeth Risley is seen boxing up fresh glazed doughnuts early Friday morning. After first opening last Thursday, the Sullivan Bakery has sold out of its goods every day since.

Photo by RR Best
JoBeth Risley is seen boxing up fresh glazed doughnuts early Friday morning. After first opening last Thursday, the Sullivan Bakery has sold out of its goods every day since.

By heavy demand, a Sullivan favorite re-emerges

June 24, 2015

by Keith Stewart
keith@newsprogress.com

Last Thursday just before 3:45 a.m. Drew Zbinden walked a block west to 112 East Harrison and began making doughnuts.
But not just any ordinary doughnuts.
Sullivan Bakery doughnuts–and 40 dozen of them.
The bakery then flipped round its open sign at 5:30 a.m.
Two hours later, all 480 of the cake and round yeast-raised rings, 96 of which were glazed, were gone.
Not to worry right? The bakery still had cookies, brownies, and six dozen muffins.
Gone.
In fact, if you walked into the newly opened bakery Thursday after 9 a.m., it appeared as though they hadn’t opened at all as their three pastry cases sat empty.
Still unbeknownst to the public the mad rush earlier that morning, patron after willing patron continued to come to the bakery in anticipation of a morning pastry.
“You’re only about three hours too late,” said Jerry Risley, Drew’s father and part owner.
“How about 5:30 a.m. tomorrow?” said JoBeth Risley, Drew’s mother (also part owner).
“We’re sold out,” said Zbinden to another customer. “Sorry.” Read More

Harner Interns

Submitted Harner Interns Lovington native, Maddison Harner (right) interned this spring and summer in the Communications Office of the Illinois Senate Republicans. She worked alongside Republican Senators, like State Sen. Chapin Rose (R-Mahomet) (left), helping the Senators with their communications to the public and media.

Submitted
Harner Interns
Lovington native, Maddison Harner (right) interned this spring and summer in the Communications Office of the Illinois Senate Republicans. She worked alongside Republican Senators, like State Sen. Chapin Rose (R-Mahomet) (left), helping the Senators with their communications to the public and media.

Boy Drowns in Nearby Pool Last Tuesday

June 24, 2015

by Keith Stewart
keith@newsprogress.com

A four-year-old boy was pronounced dead last Tuesday after he was found unresponsive in a residential pool.
According to a press release by the Macon County Coroner Michael Day’s office, Seth A. Hilton, 4, of Lovington was pronounced dead at 8:25 p.m. Tuesday, June 16 in St. Mary’s Hospital in Decatur.
Hilton had actually been reported missing shortly after 7 p.m. Tuesday according to chief sheriff deputy Gary Carroll. A press release by the sheriff’s department states that Hilton was discovered at 7:35 p.m. in a pool located near his home. Carroll added that the pool was located two houses down from Hilton’s residence and that no one was at the residence at which the pool is located at the time of the incident.
CPR was conducted on Hilton prior to being transported to the hospital. Read More