Jason Koch, News Democrat

Jason Koch

News Democrat

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Past articles by Jason:

Illinois among best states in the country for teen drivers, according to new ranking

What states are best for new teenage drivers? A new list shows Illinois in the top 10 along with Maryland, New York, Massachusetts, Louisiana and Texas. MO is among the worst, joining South Dakota and Wyoming. → Read More

Railroad crossing work will shut down part of Illinois 157 on June 13

Illinois Department of Transportation will shut down state route 157 between IL 13 and 15 in Centreville for construction work on the Norfolk Southern railroad crossing. Drivers need to use alternate roads. → Read More

St. Louis Cardinals deal a magnificent blow to Kris Bryant and the Chicago Cubs

Chicago Cubs MLB baseball player Kris Bryant made fun of STL city and fans of the Cardinals but struggled during his team’s trip to Missouri. Andrew Knizner had a strong debut at catcher during the series. → Read More

Belleville West grad named new head coach of University of Hawai’i swim teams

Elliot Ptasnik was named head coach for the University of Hawaii Rainbow Warrior and Wahine men’s and women’s NCAA college swim teams. He is a University of Iowa and Belleville West High School graduate. → Read More

Watch as a 31-foot-tall statue of Abraham Lincoln is installed in Springfield

A statue of President Abraham Lincoln discussing the Gettysburg Address with a modern citizen was installed at the Presidential Library in Museum in the Illinois state capital. It will be displayed until 2020. → Read More

Are you excited the St. Louis Blues are in the Stanley Cup Finals? Social media sure is

St Louis Blues NHL hockey fans react on social media to the team’s win over the San Jose Sharks in the Western Conference Finals. Tweets came in from supporters and the singer of Gloria, Laura Branigan. → Read More

Committee to find next head of Southern Illinois University

A 27-person committee has been formed to find the next president of Southern Illinois University. → Read More

Lindenwood consolidating, moving daytime programs from Belleville to St. Charles

Lindenwood University Belleville in Illinois is consolidating and moving all daytime academic programs to the campus in St. Charles, Missouri. The IL college will continue to offer night classes. → Read More

Collinsville police searching for suspect after US Bank is robbed Sunday afternoon

Cops in Southern Illinois are searching for a suspect accused of robbing the US Bank on Beltline in the Schnucks business complex. Collinsvile Police Department officers are looking for the man who stole money. → Read More

Spring blooms in the metro-east

Watch as dogwood, cherry, red bud and other flowering trees blossom while daffodils and daisies sprout in Belleville, IL as the spring season arrives. → Read More

Facts about pi on Pi Day

March 14 is Pi Day, which celebrates Archimedes constant and the number the determines the circumference of a circle. Here are facts and interesting details about the famous math number. → Read More

Dakota Hudson needs to start the season as the St. Louis Cardinals’ fifth starter

The STL Cardinals need pitcher Dakota Hudson in their rotation to begin the 2019 MLB baseball season behind Adam Wainwright and Michael Wacha and put John Gant in the bullpen with Andrew Miller and Alex Reyes. → Read More

Republicans who couldn’t beat climate debate, including Shimkus, now seek to join it

Rep. John Shimkus once issued a forceful rejection of climate science at a congressional hearing, invoking the Bible and declaring that “Earth will end only when God declares it’s time to be over.” → Read More

Dick Durbin says Trump’s border wall emergency will hurt the military

Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin spoke on the floor of the Senate to encourage fellow Senators to vote against approving Donald Trump's border wall emergency because of how it will hurt the military. → Read More

Several metro-east school districts closed as region braces for more winter weather

Schools in Belleville, East St. Louis, Collinsville, Cahokia, Dupo, Highland, Freeburg and Chester, Illinois, are closed as the region is under a winter weather advisory with snow and ice predicted. → Read More

O’Fallon man found guilty of first-degree murder in 2017 death of Caseyville man

Eazs A. Harper, a Southern Illinois man, was found guilty of killing Kyle Savant during a 2017 shooting in Caseyville. He was also convicted of attempting to shoot to death Samuel Randall and other crimes. → Read More

Illinois leads nation in frozen pipe insurance claims in 2018

IL had more homeowners fie insurance claims for frozen pipes and other water issues than any other state in 2018. State Farm and American Water offer tips to those who own houses to prevent winter pipe issues. → Read More

Use these tips to stay safe if you have to drive through this weekend’s winter storm

With another major snow storm expected to hit Southern IL, state police are encouraging drivers to stay off roads and highways. These safety tips also include watching for black ice & not crowding snow plows. → Read More

St. Louis Cardinals rumored to be close to deal with Andrew Miller

The STL Cardinals are close to signing free agent relief pitcher Andrew Miller to a contract according to The Athletic and Post-Dispatch. Miller was one of MLB baseball’s best players in recent seasons. → Read More

Rumors say St. Louis Cardinals willing to trade Jose Martinez to land a lefty reliever

A new trade rumor involving the STL Cardinals has the team willing to trade Jose Martinez or Tyler O’Neill to the San Francisco Giants for left handed bullpen pitchers Will Smith or Tony Watson. → Read More