A vote for Suzanne Wells

To the editor:

Please join me in voting for Suzanne Wells for Circuit Judge in the upcoming election. I have known Suzanne for six years. She is caring, compassionate and intelligent. Suzanne has invested herself in our community as a board member of Willow Tree Missions, a business owner, a parent and a member of Crossroads Church. She volunteers her time, talents and energy, always giving one hundred percent to the task at hand.

Suzanne will be a fair judge who listens to all sides. Her years of wisdom in counseling others and her knowledge of Piatt County will be a great asset. Suzanne will serve with a high level of integrity, passion and commitment.

Please vote on November 3rd.

Deana Dempsay-Chounard



I endorse Dana Rhoades

To the editor:

I have devoted my life to serving the public. I joined the Illinois Army National Guard when I was 17 years old and spent 21 years serving the citizens of Illinois, as well as, multiple trips overseas, culminating in a year in Afghanistan. I have been in law enforcement for 20 years. I have worked, patrol, undercover, and the last 15 years have been spent in an investigative capacity.

Throughout my decades of serving in the military and law enforcement, I have had the absolute privilege of working with some of the most honorable, ethical, and dedicated men and women of the State of Illinois. I am here to tell you Dana Rhoades is such a person. Throughout my career, I have worked with dozens and dozens of State’s Attorneys and Judges. I personally, worked with Mrs. Rhoades on a very difficult, multi-faceted and multi-jurisdictional sexual assault case.

Mrs. Rhoades is one of the very, very few prosecutors who truly understand and take to heart the fact that they work “for the people.” She is the embodiment of this phrase. She takes into account the human element of the judicial system. During the case, we worked together, she took the time and asked the victims, what they wanted. State’s Attorneys very, rarely, if ever take such a personal consideration and interest in the victims.

I do not take providing references lightly, especially, if there is a very good chance I will have to work in conjunction with that person in the future. I absolutely endorse Mrs. Rhoades for Judge. I have faith she will be fair, impartial, and take into account the human element, that so often gets neglected in our current judicial system.

Deanna Harton



Vote for Dana Rhoades

To the editor:

Dana Rhoades is well recognized in Piatt County as a citizen, attorney, state’s attorney, family member, and friend to many. Have you had the opportunity to see, observe, and watch Dana work in the legal system through the years? For a previous case involving both Piatt and Champaign County court systems, as the victim advocate from Champaign Co., I had the privilege over approximately two years to observe and work with Dana from the beginning to the completion of the Piatt county case.

Dana’s relentless work ethic, deep knowledge of the law, clear thinking above emotional issues, objectivity in considering all sides of a case, and sincere love of people, are only a few of the gifts she brings to the position of judge in Piatt County. Her conscientious desire for justice day after day, unwavering in her job as a prosecutor, will also contribute to her success as a Judge.

She has a gift in connecting with people and gaining people’s confidence, always with respect and knowledge of the law. What I admire most, and a rare characteristic, is she is genuine. Every minute, every hour, every day, with everyone.

Dana more that meets the qualifications of an outstanding judge…please cast your vote for Dana Rhoades on election day.

Kathy McGee



Please take part in the census

To the editor:

Once every ten years, the Constitution requires a count – or census – of the population of the United States to determine how many Representatives each State will send to the U.S. Congress.

Responding to the census also helps to determine the amount of funding that state governments and local communities will receive in the next decade. Funding is determined by population and other demographic factors. The census enables public entities and nonprofit organizations to better plan for and fund schools, hospitals, roads, emergency services, and more. With the recent economic uncertainty due to COVID-19, every dollar counts.

If just one person is not counted, communities can miss out on thousands of dollars. Now more than ever, it is imperative that all citizens are accounted for so that our communities can receive the financial resources they need. Imagine the financial impact if a third of our district is not counted.

Recent preliminary results of the census count of Illinois’ 13th Congressional District, which I represent in Congress, showed a self-response rate of 68.6%. This means that roughly 1/3 of individuals in our area have not yet completed their census. When breaking those numbers down even farther, our more rural areas have an even lower self-response rate.

The data you submit to the census is also safe, secure, and will remain private. There are tough criminal penalties for public employees who misuse census data as well.

Please take the time to fill out your 2020 census before the Wednesday, September 30, deadline and encourage your family, friends, and neighbors to do so as well. It’s easy and will take you less than 10 minutes to complete. In doing so, our communities will benefit immensely. To take the Census questionnaire, visit my2020census.gov or call 844-330-2020.

Congressman Rodney Davis



COVID is not like all other viruses

To the editor:

Ms. Vetter the COVID19 virus is NOT like all other viruses. For one thing it can be transmitted by people who show no signs of being infected. Second this virus can attack body organs (primarily heart and lungs) directly. With other viruses these organs can get secondary infections such as a flu patient getting pneumonia (bacterial or viral). Third it is too early to tell whether a person who recovers from the virus will get long term immunity. With Chicken Pox once you get infected and recover you will have immunity though you might get Shingles (another virus that folks who had Chicken Pox are particularly susceptible to) later on in life. There are still too many unknowns with this COVID19 virus to be careless, foolish, stupid, complacent or irresponsible about it!

There are people whose immune systems have been compromised from chemo therapy, diabetes, and other health problems. They can’t “beef up” their immune systems as you callously suggest! Are they of no concern for you?

Mr. Yoon pointed out masks are very effective in stopping the larger droplets (of spittle and snot) though not as effective at stopping fine aerosols.

You are right “people die of sickness” all the time. Good compassionate people will do what they can to alleviate suffering and prevent premature deaths.

Lying and/or spreading misinformation about this Virus (or any subject) doesn’t change the nature of reality and it doesn’t make people safe.

It is time to repair the damage Trump and his allies have done to our nation with their lies, deceptions, bullying, racism, bigotry, self-centeredness so we can Make America Respectable Again!

We start by doing what is right for the Common Good—including wearing masks in public spaces, practicing social distancing inside and out, sanitizing frequently touched surfaces and your hands.

Susan Humphreys



What is the Fair Tax?

To the editor:

In November Illinoisans will vote on a very important issue—the Fair Tax. From the signs I see around town, I’m guessing there is a lot of misunderstanding about what exactly the Fair Tax is. It is actually pretty straightforward.

Illinois currently has a flat tax. Everyone pays the same percentage of their income. Whether you are a multimillionaire or a working family struggling to make ends meet, you have the same tax rate. If the state coffers run low, the legislature raises the rate, and everyone gets another tax increase. That’s how we pay the bills.

The proposed Fair Tax would give Illinois a more equitable tax. Much like our federal tax and the taxes of 34 other states, higher income individuals would pay at a higher rate, while those making just enough to keep food on the table would pay at a lower rate. Many essential workers and families with children would see a decrease. Retirement income would remain exempt. With the Fair Tax, only those making more than $250,000 a year (most living in and around Cook County) would see an increase above their current rate. The rest of us would see a decrease or no change. This increases revenue because those in the highest income brackets pay more, instead of asking lower income citizens to shoulder the burden.

If you are wealthy, and want your lower income neighbors to continue paying high taxes, I expect you will vote “no.” If you are not, don’t let moneyed interests make your decision for you. See for yourself what your new taxes will look like under the Fair Tax:


Then ask yourself, why vote against your own interests, and the interests of other hard-working Illinois families?

Susan G. Bednar



Wells will get my vote

To the editor:

Compassion is very hard to come by in today’s workplace. This year we have the ability to elect a new judge to serve Piatt County. We have someone ready to fulfill that role and do it with compassion and sincere leadership.

I met Suzanne in 2016; she hired me as a Bookkeeper. During this time, I started pursuing my Associates Degree. Suzanne has always valued education; she supported me through college and in my biggest challenges. Graduating college was a huge goal. In late summer of 2016, my mother was diagnosed with cancer; in 2018 she passed. I was her only child to graduate high school; I wanted her to see me graduate college. I was able to spend time with her, no questions asked, because Suzanne understood precious time. Of many employers, none of them would have allowed me to spend the time away while still holding a position. My family felt so thankful and blessed! Suzanne: thank you for being so compassionate in our workplace and modeling true compassion.

Since 2018, I have graduated with my Associates Degree, been promoted to Property Manager, and a Board Member of the Village of Mansfield.

Suzanne J. Wells is running for Piatt County Circuit Judge in the November 2020 election. Suzanne has been an attorney in Monticello for many years. She runs her private practice, helping countless families in Piatt County from; Guardian ad Litem, family law to Real Estate Transactions and Civil Disputes. She helped develop Willow Tree Missions, helping women for several years. For our family, we trust Suzanne will serve Piatt County well! In November, if you decide you want a compassionate person running our justice system, in the county in which you live, vote Suzanne J. Wells Piatt Circuit County Judge.

Jessica Bartley



Appreciate the bison

Letter to the editor:

I want to thank the Journal-Republican for the recent article and picture regarding the Lieb family bison herd. I’d like to share my experience with the animals.

I lead a fairly busy life for a senior citizen. I play music for the Rotary Club every Wednesday and for the nursing home every Thursday. Then came the COVID virus! Everything shut down. Even the library.

After a few long days of being a shut-in, I decided to take an afternoon drive every day. Many times I drove past the farm where I grew up, the one-room schoolhouse location, the Goose Creek creek, etc. Then I would always wind up driving past the Lieb pasture to see if I could see the buffalo grazing.

If they were there, I would park awhile and just watch them. I do my drive every single afternoon, sometimes to Bement or to Ivesdale, but always come back to the Liebs’ farm.

As I watch the bison, I know God is in His heaven and we will survive the COVID.

Kathleen Foster