Monday, March 22, 1999

Alton Telegraph

Location: Alton, Illinois

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Alton Telegraph (Newspaper) - March 22, 1999, Alton, Illinois SERVING THE RIVER BEND SINCE 1836 Kitchen expansion is called ‘excessive Officials say $600,000 renovation at Madison County Jail not a hot idea By PAUL MACKIE Telegraph staff writer EDWARDSVILLE - A $600,000 expansion of the Madison County Jail’s kitchen is “excessive” and a waste of taxpayer money, say two area Republican leaders. “That seems like an excessive amount of money, and there’s a long pattern of not taking care of the taxpayers of Madison County,” said former Madison County Republican Party Chairman Ed Ragsdale of Alton. He cited the recent increases in pensions for former County Board members and several extravagant trips taken by county officials over the years. But County Administrator James Monday and Marty Siglock, the county’s director of buildings, said the expenditure is not exorbitant for construction of an industrial kitchen. Siglock said the county didn’t have the money to com- ■ See KITCHEN, Page A-7 Bethalto teens caught stealing political signs May be connected with football case By REBECCA HOPKINS Telegraph staff writer BETHALTO - Trouble is brewing again in Bethalto following the arrest of three teens Friday for stealing political signs belonging to three incumbent Bethalto School Board members who are running for re-election. Clayton Cummins, 18; Jason Ballesterous, 18; and Justin Walker, 18, have been charged with petty theft, a violation of a local ordinance that is punishable by a fine of up to $1,000. According to Bethalto police, a complaint of vandalism was called in by a resident who gave a description of a vehicle leaving the scene. Police stopped a truck matching the description in the IOO block of Heatherland and recovered nine political signs from the bed and cab The two occupants of the truck, Cummins and Ballesterous, were arrested at the scene. Following a short investigation the third suspect was identified. Justin Walker, 18, ■ See TEENS. Page A-7 Academy Awards And the winners are... Page NCAA Michigan State gets Final Four berth PageC-l RAPH The outlook Mostly cloudy and cool: high near 47, low near 34 Page IM Resale shop Catholic Charities makes move to East Alton Page B-l Vol. 164, No. 66 —50 cents Monday, March 22,1999 www.thetelegraph.com The Telegraph/JOHN BADMAN Trustees at the Madison County Jail in Edwardsville help with lunch preparations in the kitchen. HHMteifAkh Grants may mean additional teachers By SANFORD J. SCHMIDT Telegraph staff writer School officials may be able to expand the ranks of teachers once federal grants totaling $50 million statewide come through. Alton schools would receive about $263,000 under the program, while the Edwardsville School District would receive about $104,000. “That would allow us to hire a minimum of nine and at least eight teachers,” said Richard Basden, the Alton School District’s assistant superintendent for curriculum. “We are thrilled and honored to be awarded the grant," ■ See TEACHERS, Page A-7 The Telegraph/JOHN BADMAN Pupils such as these in the kindergarten class of teacher Linda Pape at Midway School could benefit from federal grants. Steamboats helped put Hamburg on the map By ANDE YAKSTIS Telegraph staff writer HAMBURG - The village of Hamburg looks like a quaint river town portrayed in Mark Twain’s famous story, “Life on the Mississippi.” Hamburg was born out of the steamboat era, when townspeo- ——— pie gathered on Te|flf|rnn|l the landing to ■«>«*»■ “Mi« * atc j' the pad- TOMfflS dlewheel Belle_ of Calhoun steaming toward shore, said Francis Strauch, a retired schoolteacher in town. Residents listened for the whistle of the Belle of Calhoun and hurried to the shore to greet the beautiful ■ See HAMBURG. Page A-7 Good if: Morning Influenza regularly bugs pupils School officials say virus hit harder this year than last The Telegraph/RUSS SMITH First-grader Jesse Saulsberry, front, washes his hands after getting a lesson from registered nurse Susie Moore in basic hand-washing at Mark Twain Elementary School in Alton. EDITOR ’S NOTE: This is the second of a three-part series about diseases that can be passed along at school. By ANGELA MUELLER Telegraph staff writer Each school year between November and March, thousands of pupils miss school because they are at home suffering from the flu. This year was no different, local school health officials said. Leonard Hawthorne, special services administrator for the Alton School District, said its school nurses identified more than twice as many cases of the flu this school year than last. “We had substantially more cases, and that’s what you hear from a lot of schools,” Hawthorne said. “I think maybe there were strains that were more resistant to the influenza serum and therefore were harder to treat." The East Alton Elementary District also dealt with many flu cases this year, said school nurse Jeannine Burk. “We were hit pretty hard at the end of February,” Burk said. “It was worse this year than last year.” Symptoms of the influenza viruses, or flu, include a fever higher than IOO degrees; respiratory symptoms such as cough, sore throat and runny or stuffy nose; headache; muscle aches and extreme fatigue. Most children recover from the flu within a week or two. A severe case of the flu may develop into pneumonia, but this complication is more common with the elderly than with children. However, both children and the elderly are more susceptible to dehydration. “Children are particularly at risk because their bodies are immature,” said Debra Tscheschlok, personal health services manager for the Madison County Health Department. “They have less reserve for fluids than adults do.” The flu virus is spread in droplet form, so when a person coughs or sneezes, the virus enters the air. With the close contact of children in the classroom, a flu virus can spread quickly among the pupils. “The kids are in such close contact, and they’re sneezing and coughing; it seems to spread very rapidly,” said Sherry Verdun, school nurse for three of the Bethalto schools. “When you have so many students together, it promotes the spread of something like that,” Hawthorne said. One important measure to prevent the spread of a flu virus is as simple as soap and water. “Good hand-washing, especially after they cough or sneeze, is important,” Verdun said. To help children learn about the importance of good hand- ■ See PUPILS, Page A-7 Area/Illinois...... A-3 Bulletin Board____ .A-8 Classifieds....... 0-4 Comics.......... D-? Editorial......... A-4 Nation/World..... R-3 Neighbors....... R-1 Obituaries ....... A-5 Berkel, Budde. Carlton, Cole, Evans, Gilbert, Hill, Killebrew, Popham, Ruehrup, Ryan, Unterbrink Region.......... .D-1 Scoreboard...... 0-? Television ....... n-3 Weather ......... n-4 tis OIS 110 H. Adams Parkway CLOSEOUT SALE OF ALL ABOVE GROUND POOLS Alton, IL 62002    (1998    models in stock) limited quantity 466-5301 LAYAWAY NOW FOR SPRING