St. Louis On the Air
4:12 pm
Tue March 4, 2014

Belleville Celebrates Its Bicentennial

The Belleville Veterans' Memorial Fountain
(Courtesy of the City of Belleville)

Updated following the show.

St. Louis is not the only local community celebrating an important milestone this year. Founded in 1814, Belleville, Illinois is turning 200.

Read more
Metro East Rally
2:59 pm
Fri December 27, 2013

Metro East Residents Rally For More Transparency In Government

Lee Griffin, the chair of Metro East Citizens for Social and Economic Progress, addresses protesters outside St. Clair County headquarters on Dec. 27, 2013.
Credit (Rachel Lippmann/St. Louis Public Radio and the Beacon)

A group of citizens fed up with what they call a lack of transparency and responsiveness in St. Clair County government aired a wide variety of concerns today outside the county's headquarters in Belleville.

Read more
Other News
1:52 pm
Wed September 11, 2013

Belleville Leaders Want Community Input On Comprehensive Development Plan

(Wikipedia Commons)

Leaders in Belleville are looking for community input on its Comprehensive Plan update.

The last plan, adopted in 2000, included projects like the extension of 17th Street and the reuse of former Belleville West High School for Lindenwood University.

This year's update, which began forming in mid-July, will focus on areas of development in mobility and housing, economic development, and infrastructure over the next 15 to 20 years. 

Read more
12:54 pm
Fri March 29, 2013

Belleville Native Jay Farrar On New Work, Performs Live On Cityscape

Son Volt
Emily Nathan

Belleville, Illinois native Jay Farrar is the leader of the band Son Volt, an alt-country group formed in 1994 after the break-up of Uncle Tupelo.

Earlier this month Farrar, with his band Son Volt, released Honky Tonk (Rounder Records), a more acoustic-based sound which recalls the classic Bakersfield honky tonk music.

The new album also features Farrar’s foray into playing the pedal steel guitar, which he learned while playing with the St. Louis band, Colonel Ford.

Read more
Belleville Homeless Shelter
8:54 am
Tue January 8, 2013

Homeless Advocate Submits Petition On Former YMCA In Belleville

An advocate for the homeless is pressing for Belleville voters to decide whether he can convert the city's former YMCA building into a shelter. The Rev. Larry Rice on Monday submitted a 790-signature petition to the St. Clair County Clerk's Office to force the ballot measure calling for the city to sell the property to his New Life Evangelistic Center in St. Louis for $1.

The Belleville News-Democrat reports the referendum could be on the April 9 municipal ballot if the petitions aren't challenged by Monday.

Read more
Child porn sentence
4:47 pm
Wed October 17, 2012

Man Arrested In Child Pornography Crackdown Sentenced To Nearly 13 Years

Ill. Atty. General Lisa Madigan announces the arrest of Garold Semelka on child pornography charges in August 2011. Semelka was sentenced on those charges today to 12 years in federal prison.
(Rachel Lippmann/St. Louis Public Radio)

A Belleville, Ill. man arrested as part of Attorney General Lisa Madigan's crackdown on child pornography last year will spend more than a dozen years in federal prison for his crimes.

Garold Lee Semelka, 62, pleaded guilty in June to receiving and possessing child pornography. His computer contained more than 600 images or videos of minors engaging in sexually explicit activity.

Read more
5:39 pm
Tue July 24, 2012

Rice: Belleville not dealing with homeless, closing shelters

Rev. Larry Rice spoke with reporters outside the Belleville Municipal Building Tuesday.
(Joseph Leahy/St. Louis Public Radio)

Rev. Larry Rice directed about 20 homeless persons to a mall in Fairview Heights on Tuesday to underscore the lack of shelters in St. Clair County.

Rice says many homeless persons seeking refuge from the triple-digit temperatures wind up across the river at his shelter downtown. 

“Belleville represents what we see in so many municipalities," Rice said. "Where people just aren’t dealing with the homeless. They’re closing shelters. We saw a shelter close here – the Salvation Army – in 2009. They made no other arrangements for the homeless.”

10:58 am
Thu July 19, 2012

SWIC in Belleville evacuated after bomb threat

View Larger Map

Classes have been called off at a southwestern Illinois college after a bomb threat forced the evacuation of the campus.

The Belleville News-Democrat reports that officials ordered Southwestern Illinois College in Belleville cleared out Thursday morning after a student found a threatening hand-written note in a men's bathroom of the main building.

Read more
12:07 pm
Tue November 29, 2011

Man admits defrauding southern Ill. church, school

(via Flickr/steakpinball)

Sentencing is scheduled for next spring for a southwestern Illinois man who's admitted using schemes involving leased copy machines to defraud a school, a church and community groups.

Forty-nine-year-old Kevin Welch of Altamont pleaded guilty Monday in federal court in East St. Louis to charges of mail fraud and engaging in a fraudulent financial transaction involving more than $10,000.

Authorities say the fraud took place from 2001 to 2009.

Read more
Golf Course for Sale / Belleville
1:00 pm
Wed November 16, 2011

In the market to buy a golf course?

(via Flickr/chispita_666)

An 18-hole golf course in southern Illinois could be yours for $750,000.

The Belleville News-Democrat reports that the family of Joseph Trover is selling the Yorktown Golf Course in Belleville.

They have owned the 38-acre property since 1992 and hope to keep it a golf course. Trover says he is willing to come down on the price because a golf course is good for the community and people.