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The Oskaloosa Independent
Valley Falls , Kansas
February 11, 2016     The Oskaloosa Independent
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February 11, 2016

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:: :~ :: :4: * ~: :~: :~: 9: :~: 9: H:: 9: H~ * :~ :4: :4: :: ~t I. ! 1 6 2 9 :!i; L L. I I /U! )q P P 17 T/q Iiii: 2L~ ( t!~ !~:i3~I i~ :i!;I Ili !i)!l)l !!J! !flli7 McLouth City Council The February meeting of the McLouth City Council is sched- uled for 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Fire Station, 104 W. Lucy. At a glance... Andrew Jacob Becker, Norton- ville, completed a bachelor of sci- ence in marketing at Northwest Missouri State University at the conclusion of the fall trimester. Northwest Missouri State Uni- versity, Maryville, announced that Cassidy I. Sands, Ozawkie, and Brandi L. Henson, Perry, have been named to the academic honor roll for the fall trimester. Emma R. Taylor, Perry, has been included on the president's honor roll. The Jayhawk Area Agency on Aging Inc. is soliciting contrac- tors to provide meals known as CHAMPSS (Choosing Healthy Appetizing Meal Plan Solutions for Seniors) for people 60 and older residing within Douglas, Jefferson, and Shawnee coun- ties. A conference will be held Tuesday, Feb. 16, and proposals must be received at the JAAA office, 2910 SW Topeka Blvd., Topeka, by 4 p.m. Friday, Feb. 26. Corps announces changes in recreation day use fees The U.S. Army Corps of En- gineers Kansas City District has announced a change to rec- reation day use fees charged for boat launches and swimming beaches managed by USACE. There is also a change to the annual pass fee for these facili- ties. This change to a simpler fee structure ensures that Corps fees remain comparable and fair to those charged by other local providers for similar facili- ties and services. It is the first change to the fees since 2002. Day use fees at Kansas City District facilities' for 2016 are as follows: A $5 day use fee per private non-commercial vehicle. A $2 fee per adult for walk- in or bike-in visitors. A $20 fee per bus or com- mercial vehicle. No fee charged for children under the age of 16. Payment of the day use fee entitles the user to launch a boat or use any designated swim beach at a USACE-operated recreation area for that day. An annual day use pass is available for $40 and permits the holder and accompanying passengers the daily use of fa- cilities managed by the Corps for one calendar year. The passes are for sale at Kansas City District lake offices and visitor centers. Pre-trial conference in Drake case rescheduled A pre-trial conference per- taining to the first of two cases involving Steven Drake of Law- rence was not held the morning of Feb. 3 as scheduled and has been rescheduled for Feb. 19 at 9:30 a.m. The case consists of five charges, aggravated assault, two counts of aggravated interfer- ence with parental custody, con- tributing to a child's misconduct or deprivation, and endangering a child. Drake pleaded not guilty to the charges Jan. 5. In the second case, Drake is charged with interference with parental custody and contrib- uting to a child's misconduct or deprivation. A preliminary hearing has been set for Feb. 29 at 11 a.m. All seven charges stem from a series of events that occurred in the Oskaloosa area Oct. 16. At that time, Drake allegedly removed his 12-year-old son, Andrew, from the custody of the boy's mother, Cherylene Mor- ris. Oskaloosa City Council Perry Lake The lake level Jan. 29 was 890.84 msl., slightly less than 1 foot below normal pool. The discharge rate was 300 cfs. The surface temperature was 33 degrees F. L 91::~ !:!i t :~: '* t~ I:'l ()!i(, !:)q:) :i .,dh,mbdid THE S K A L S A February 11, 2016 Vol. 156, Number 35 8 Pages--$ 1.00 Published Every Thursday Official Jefferson County Newspaper, Oskaloosa, Kansas "Six Months Older Than The State Of Kansas" nnaway to by Rick Nichols Perry's Norma Dunnaway was reappointed to the Second Judicial District Nominating Commission when the Jefferson County Board of County Commissioners met Monday afternoon at the courthouse. Dunnaway told Commissioners Wayne Ledbetter, Richard Malta and Lynn Luck that she had been on the commission for "a lot of years" and that she felt like she had "a little insight" into the role it plays within the Kansas judicial system by hav- ing worked for a judge, which she continues to do. The judge was not identified. Largely for the benefit of Led- better, who is relatively new to the board, Dunnaway took the time to discuss the work of the commission, which is charged with the task of filling magistrate judgeship vacan- cies within the judicial district and selecting up to three candidates to fill a district judgeship vacancy within the district, for consideration by the sitting governor. "I do make calls," she told the commissioners in describing her approach to the job. "I do talk to people." Her spontaneous "presentation" concluded, Dunnaway was asked by Ledbetter if she would like to con- tinue serving on the commission, and her immediate answer was "I would love to." The vote to retain her was unanimous. Dunnaway's new term is sched- uled to expire in 2020. The wife of former Sheriff Roy Dunnaway, Dunnaway is the only woman among the eight members of the commission. Of those eight, four are lawyers, the other four non- lawyers. The Second Judicial District is comprised of Jefferson, Jackson, Pottawatomie and Wabaunsee coun- ties. Each county is represented on the commission by one non-lawyer, who is appointed to the position by that county's county commissioners. Lawyers elect the lawyers who serve on the commission. The commission was busy late last year, picking one magistrate judge to sit on the bench and sending three names to Gov. Sam Brownback so he could choose the next Jackson County District Judge, the successor to the late Micheal A. Ireland. Inother business, Planning and Zoning Administrator Sam Hender- son appeared before the commission- ers to present for their consideration two nominees to fill vacancies on the Regional Planning Commission, Brandon Newman and Matthew Finley. They then voted 3-0 to appoint Newman to finish Kelli Curry's unex- pired term on the RPC and Finley to take Tim Bailey's place on the seven- member body. Newman's term will end in September, Finley's in January of 2019. Henderson announced that a hear- ing to consider the possible creation of a Commercial Recreational District Overlay in the general vicinity of Perry Lake is scheduled for Thursday, Feb. 25 at 7 p.m. Because of perceived public interest in the matter, the hearing will take place at Oskaloosa Junior-Senior High School. Accompanied by his son, Matthew, Pat Schafer stepped up to the podium in the commissioners' meeting room to ask them to waive the depth-to- width ratio requirement that would otherwise apply to a piece of property he owns under the regulations for the subdivision in question. The property is encompassed by the final plat for Schafer Ridge, 9474 22nd Street. Schafer's request was unanimous- ly approved. Schafer told the board that his son was planning to build a house on the property. County Appraiser Tanya Erichsen reported that her office would be com- pleting the reappraisal process for this year this week. She said she and her co-workers were "on schedule" and should "fly right through" the 500 reappraisals they still had to do. Ledbetter asked Erichsen a ques- tion of an administrative nature in connection to the reappraisal process and appeared to receive a satisfac- tory answer from her. The question had to do with the determination of reappraisal assignments within Erichsen's office. Susan Newell, the county's 9-1-1/ Dispatch director, updated the com- missioners on her plans to upgrade the equipment currently in place at the dispatch center on the lower level of the Sheriff's Annex. There being no objections to the idea, she indicated to them that she would begin to move forward with the project. Later in the meeting, the board voted unanimously to waive the county's policy pertaining to the solicitation of bids on planned pur- chases in excess of $25,000 because the company that will be upgrading the equipment, TBS Electronics Inc., Topeka, is considered a "sole source vendor," meaning no other company in this general area can deliver the desired products and services. Public Works Director Bill Noll informed the commissioners that the replacement of the old stone arch culvert near the intersection of Wild Horse Road and 13th Street would get underway sometime this week. He then talked about a second project, one that will require a goodly amount of dirt to be moved by employees of the Road and Bridge Department. Possible action on TA2015-3 was tabled until the board's Feb. 22 meet- ing to give the commissioners more time to gather information prior to making a decision on the matter. The zoning case involves proposed changes in the language found in the county's regulations covering the use of signs. TA stands for text amendment. Citing as justification for the move the attorney-client privilege recog- nized in the Kansas Open Meetings Act, the board met privately with County Counselor Josh Ney for seven minutes. No binding action was taken when the meeting reopened to the public. A light agenda allowed the com- missioners to dispense with the business at hand in less than 55 minutes. Because the courthouse will be closed Monday in observance of Presidents' Day, the commissioners will not be meeting next week. Jefferson County District Judge Gary L. Nafziger on Feb. 2 granted a motion filed by County Counselor Josh Ney to have dismissed the lawsuit Innovative Technology Ser- vices Inc., Topeka, brought against the Planning and Zoning Depart- ment last year. The ruling brought to an end a hearing on the motion, during which both Ney and Barclay Mead, ITS' chief executive officer, had a chance to argue their case before the judge. The proceeding lasted approximately half an hour. Ney spoke first but only needed five minutes to lay out his case. He told Judge Nafziger that Mead's request for declaratory judgment in his suit against the county was "not appropriate" and went on to assert that the suit represented "a clear case of declaratory judgment being used for procedural fencing." Mead, who chose to challenge Ney's motion without the benefit of legal counsel, told Judge Nafziger that in filing the suit, he was both looking for some clarification as to what activities could conceivably take place at Hog Holler Saloon, 9252 Apple Valley Lane, under the conditional use permit that has been issued to the owner of the property, and seeking injunc- tive relief in connection to the determinations Planning and Zoning has made in regard to the current use of the property. In issuing his ruling, Judge Nafziger noted that ITS failed to appeal Planning and Zon- ing's determinations within the required 30-day period and had not exhausted all of the possible administrative "remedies" avail- able to it. Mead can appeal the judge's decision, provided he does so within 30 days of the filing of the journal entry recording the deci- sion. Photo by Bridget Weishaar Allen Reynolds, Winchester Rural High School graduate and member of the first Super Bowl, holds the 50th anniversary golden football high in the air before presenting it to the members of the Jefferson County North football team, See stow on page 7. lance service in by Rick Nichols of Rock Creek Township. It accounted For both the Kansas City Chiefsfor about 13 percent of the calls for and the Jefferson County Ambulance service. Service, last year was a record-break- Here is the statistical breakdown ing year, but in the case of the latter, for the county's 12 ~ire districts: breaking a record is not necessarily a Fire District 1 (Kaw Township) good thing unless the record involved - 54 calls for service, 39 transports, is the one for average response time. 8 refusals and 7 cancellations; Fire When the Chiefs beat the Oak- District 2 (Kentucky Township)- 102 land Raiders 23-17 in the final game calls for service, 65 transports, 16 of the 2015 regular season, a game refusals and 21 cancellations; Fire that was actually played earlier this District 3 (Rural Township) - 41 calls year, they broke the franchise record for service, 25 transports, 4 refusals for consecutive victories. "Good for and 12 Cancellations; Fire District them!" one could say, but by then 4 (Sarcoxie Township) - 37 calls for the county ambulance service had service, 17 transports, 5 refusals and already broken four records, none of 15 cancellations; Fire District 5 - 180 which it wanted to break, calls for service, 116 transports, 34 re- According to a five-page reportfusals and 30 cancellations; Fire Dis- Ambulance Service Director James trict 6 (Fairview Township) - 46 call~s Tweed presented to the Board offor service, 31 transports, 5 refusals County Commissioners Feb. 1, per- and 10 cancellations; Fire District 7 sonnel with his department made(Ozawkie Township) - 146 calls for a total of 1,389 runs during 2015 in service, 106 transports, 22 refusals responding to 1,425 calls for service, and 18 cancellations; Fire District 8 completing 867 transports in the - 337 calls for service, 242 transports, process. All three figures represent a 65 refusals and 30 cancellations; Fire record. District 9 (Union Township) - 140 The department also had to con-calls for service, 78 transports, 29 re- tend with 240 cancellations as it at- fusals and 33 cancellations; Fire Dis- tempted to go about its business and trict 10 (Jefferson Township)' 83 calls that, too, was a record, for service, 65 transports, 11 refusals Prior to last year, the year 2013 and 7 cancellations; Fire District 11 was responsible for the highest pa- (Delaware Township) - 126 calls for tient total (i.e., calls for service), service, 21transports, 5 refusals and 1,371, the most runs, 1,346, and the 100 cancellations; and Fire District most transports, 841. The previous 12 (Norton Township) - 74 calls for record for cancellations, 222, was set service, 62 transports, 5 refusals and in 2005 and equaled in 2012. 7 cancellations. Tweed's report also indicates that Assigned to the category "Other" there were 235 refusals of service last were 59 calls for service, 26 refusals year. That was not a record, however, and 33 cancellations, but there were The most refusals during the course no transports. of a year is 246, and that was the total Between them, three hospitals, for 2009. Lawrence Memorial Hospital and Emergency Medical Services 1, Topeka's Stormont-Vail HealthCare based in Oskaloosa, handled ap-and St. Francis Health Center, were proximately 61 percent of the calls for on the receiving end of most of the service, EMS 2, based in Meriden, the transports. Stormont-Vail topped balance. Here is the statistical break- the list, accepting 330 patients, and down between the two stations: it was followed by LMH with 278 and EMS 1 - transports, 582; refusals, then St. Francis with 141. 149; cancellations, 88; other, 56; calls Other hospitals taking in patients for service, 875. included Atchison Hospital, 27, F.W. EMS 2 - transports, 285; refusals, Huston Medical Center in Winchester, 86; cancellations, 152; other, 27; calls 15, Providence Medical Center in for service, 550. Kansas City, Kan., 7, the Leaven- According to the report, roughly 25 worth Veterans Administration Hos- percent of the calls for service origi- pital, 6, the Topeka V.A. Hospital, 6, hated in Fire District 8, which serves St. John Hospital in Leavenworth, 5, Oskaloosa and the rest of Oskaloosa Children's Mercy Hospital in Kansas Township. No other fire district came City, Mo., 4, the University of Kansas anywhere close to matching that per- Medical Center in Kansas City, 3, centage. Shawnee Mission Medical Center Next on the list was Fire District 5, which serves Meriden and the rest See Ambulance Page 3 by Rick Nichols A rural Topeka woman with more than 25 years of experience in afford- able housing and economic develop- ment has been hired to fill what is a new position, that of Economic Development Assistant for Jefferson County. Michele Carter assumed the du- ties associated with the position on Feb. 1 and will be working closely with Economic Development Director Brittany Chaplin in an effort to build on what she and those who have come alongside her have accomplished over the past 22 months. Carter relishes the opportunity. "I'm excited about partnering with Brittany and the Jefferson County Economic Development Commission to promote economic development initiatives throughout Jefferson County," she said in an email sent to the paper last week. According to the email, Carter's 'responsibilities encompass five dif- ferent areas. To be specific, she is being called upon to coordinate with the JCEDC's Executive Board in establishing program goals and pro- duction targets relative to support- ing existing businesses, supporting the formation of new businesses, promoting and marketing Jefferson County as a venue for commerce and tourism, and creating a system of support to provide the information, resources and education necessary for successful commerce; act as an information resource for cities and chambers of commerce within the county; provide a quarterly progress report to the Executive Board and the Board of County Commissioners; participate in continuing education and achieve the certifications neces- sary to successfully achieve goals and production targets; and act as a liaison between Jefferson County and the Kansas Department of Commerce and other state and private business entities as identified as necessary to achieve goals and production tar- gets. Carter describes herself as a"pas- sionate, skilled and knowledgeable leader in the affordable housing and economic development industry" who "excels at educating and develop- ing strategies for rural and urban communities regarding available economic development/affordable housing grant opportunities and initiatives." For the past two years plus, Carter has been associated with Midwest Affordable Housing/Michele Carter Consulting of Topeka. As a consultant specializing in the area of affordable housing, she has been involved in the writing of Affordable Housing Pro- gram grants on behalf of non-profit by Rick Nichols Meeting last Thursday night at City Hall, the Oskaloosa City Council voted unanimously to initiate foreclo- sure proceedings against the owners of two properties who have reportedly failed to pay the taxes owed on them for the past three years. The properties in question are located at 306 Union and 312 Union. According to the office of City Clerk Patty Hamm, the owner of record for 306 Union is Patti Back and the owner of record for 312 Union is Jo Ann Back. The city had the two dwellings and other structures that stood on these properties razed in September of 2014. Since then, it has had to ab- sorb the costs incurred in regularly mowing the grass, an expense Council President John Norman thinks the community's taxpayers should not be expected to help cover year after year. Norman joined with fellow council members Amy Robbins, Eric LeRoux and Ken Newell in supporting the motion calling for the city to pursue foreclosure. The vote was preceded by a relatively short discussion, during which City Attorney Lee Hendricks reviewed the delinquent tax figures for the two properties and took the time to explain what the foreclosure process usually entails. In other action, the council voted unanimously to give Chief of Police Paul Bolinger a two percent raise. The action was taken following a 15- minute executive session held for the stated purpose of discussing person- Submitted photo Michele Carter housing and economic development professionals and the monitoring of approved AHP grants on both a short- and long-term basis. She also has presented grant workshops at housing conferences in Kansas, Ne- braska, Oklahoma and Colorado. Carter is certified as a homebuyer education trainer through Neighbor- Works America. Carter is the Director of Member- ship for the Kansas Housing Asso- ciation and the Grant Manager for Habitat for Humanity of Colorado. From February of 1989 until No- vember of 2013, Carter was employed by the Federal Home Loan Bank in Topeka. During her years there she managed the AHP Homeownership Program for more than five years, the Housing and Community Devel- opment Program for 21 months and the HCD Community Programs and Outreach Program for 10 months. Carter received an Employee Merit Award while with the FHLB. Offthe clock, Carter was a member of the Board of Directors for the Sea- man Education Advantage Founda- tion from 2001-2010 and served as president of the Topeka Corporate Volunteer Council from 2002-2004 and as president of the Board of Directors for the Volunteer Center of Topeka from 2003-2004. The daughter ofMarjorie McClurg and the late Jerry McClurg, Carter grew up in the Meriden area and at- tended Topeka's Seaman High School. In 2010, she earned an associate degree from Highland Community College. Carter is married to Ed Carter, who was raised in Valley Falls. The couple have three children, Tanner, Hunter and Chloe. nel matters relating to non-elected personnel. The closed-door discussion was requested by Norman. The session had as participants Hendricks and Hamm, in addition to the council members and Mayor Eric Hull. Earlier in the meeting, in his monthly report to the council, Bolinger described January as "fairly decent" in terms ,of the number of calls he and his fellow officers had to handle during the course of the month. At one point, Bolinger indicated that he had a question about a va- cant house in town he said kids were breaking into, that being, what was he supposed to do about the situa- tion? Hendricks replied to the inquiry by saying he would put together a notice that could be posted on the property. The location of the house was not disclosed. A copy of the police chief's writ- ten report was made available to the paper and can be summarized as fol- lows: Animal Control ................................. 1 Assist Other Agencies ....................... 3 Assist Citizen ..................................... Building Checks ................................ 1 Dispatch (possible DUI) ................... 2 Dispatch (civil matter) ...................... 1 Dispatch (9-1-1 hangup) ................... 1 Employee Security ............................ 9 Noise Complaint (commercial) ......... 1 See City Page 3