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Susan Smith-Harmon

Susan Smith-Harmon

   Two metro-east firearms instructors can no longer teach carry-conceal permit classes.  That after some students came forward saying the two instructors at Sparky's Armory in Mascoutah gave as few as two hours of training instead of the required 16 and still issued certificates saying students were ready to get their permits from the state.  
   St. Clair County States Attorney Brendan Kelly says about 100 students received the certificates without actually completing the state mandated training hours.  
   Kelly says the students who paid the instruction fees won't get their state permits, but they will get their money back.  
   Kelly says he doesn't expect any criminal charges, but the two instructors can no longer issue firearms certificates.
 
   There won't be any relief for overcrowding at two metro-east jails after voters in two counties reject proposed tax increases to fund jail expansion.  A 0.25 percent sales tax increase to fund a $37 million expansion of the St. Clair County Jail was rejected by more than two-thirds of voters yesterday.  By a 2-1 margin, Madison County voters rejected a bond-finance plan to pay for nearly $19 million in renovations to bring their jail up to code.
   Meanwhile, Fairview Heights residents overwhelmingly approved an 85 cent property tax increase in order to save the two elementary schools in the Grant School District.  School officials had warned they would have to dissolve the district without the increase, sending about 680 students to neighboring districts.
 

Topsy turvey primary results for metro-east sheriffs

Wednesday, 19 March 2014 03:19 Published in Local News

   After an Illinois primary election that saw relatively low turnout yesterday, one metro-east sheriff is out, another is in.  

   Glen Carbon Police Chief John Lakin took 64 percent of the vote to defeat Madison County Sheriff Bob Hertz in the Democratic primary.  With no Republican candidate, Lakin will officially win the post in November.  

   St. Clair County Sheriff Rick Watson had been appointed in 2012 to replace the late Mearl Justus.  Watson easily won the Democratic nomination.  Again, no Republican candidate means he'll begin his first full term after the November election. 

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