Vol. 147 , No. 21
Wednesday, February 10, 2021
Peabody, KS 66866
UPDATED AFTER PRINT DEADLINE
Rolling blackouts expected
Local officials are warning that rolling blackouts are expected in Marion county until temperatures warm up enough to reduce consumption. “We are warning our customers that this will occur,” Marion city administrator Roger Holter said. “We have no advance notice.”
School official 'astonished' Marion won't pay for pool
On Monday, Marion city council members flatly refused to pay the school district’s January invoices for the city’s half of pool expenses for the second half of 2020. This is the second time in three months the city has bucked on payment. School board president Nick Kraus, present at the meeting, later said he was astonished.
Clinic won't close after all
Herington Hospital has changed its mind about closing its Hillsboro Clinic. The hospital announced Jan. 7 that it would close the embattled clinic effective April 30, blaming federal legislation that reduces the amount of money paid by Medicare.
Record cold grips county
If you think you haven’t been this cold in decades, you might be right. The 11-day cold snap blasting the county is the longest streak of freezing temperatures recorded in nearly 38 years, said Mick McGuire, a forecaster with the National Weather Service in Wichita.
More deaths, but COVID total lowest in months
Four new cases of COVID-19 were disclosed Tuesday by county health officials, marking the lowest seven-day total since Oct. 29. The county’s pandemic death toll stands at 12, but officials have said previously that reports of deaths often are delayed for weeks or months.
Old stone home is family's legacy
A farm now owned by Gordon and Shirley Groening has passed through several generations of family. It once was owned by Dallas Rogers, whose family lost it in the Great Depression.
Park fountain to get its swan back
A bathing swan long ago removed from a fountain in Central Park will be replaced after Marion residents saw a photo of the fountain as it used to be in the July 31, 2019, edition of the Marion County Record. City parks and recreation director Margo Yates told council members Monday that Bob Good contacted her in September to say his family was interested in replacing the swan as a memorial for his mother, Bula Good.
Co-ops contend suit filed in haste
Two grain cooperatives among six that own Team Marketing Alliance say they are supportive of TMA despite a Feb. 2 lawsuit filed by three other owner cooperatives that seeks to dissolve TMA. “Mid-Kansas Cooperative and Producer Ag are fully supportive today of the mission and strategy of TMA, a grain marketing and risk management company serving agricultural customers,” said Nichole Gouldie, communications director for MKC.
Historic building wins preservation grant
The historic Donaldson and Hosmer building in downtown Marion was chosen for an $89,700 historic preservation grant from the state Heritage Trust Fund. The 1887 building at 318 E. Main St., now owned by Randy and Rachel Collett, was first the home of First National Bank, then used for offices and cafes. It has been remodeled a number of times over the years.
Cafe 256 plans to offer pickup and delivery service
Business has been slow the past few months at Café 256, but owners Tim and Barbara Melendy are in it for the long haul. They are in the process of setting up an online ordering system that will provide pickup and delivery.
Police dog back after emergency surgery
Marion police department’s drug dog, Blue, returns to duty today after swallowing an extension cord and being rushed to emergency surgery. Officer Aaron Slater, who serves as Blue’s handler, noticed the cord was missing and took the 2-year-old Belgian Malinois to Spur Ridge Vet Hospital.
Hillsboro to keep hybrid model until after break
Hillsboro’s school board voted Monday evening to continue the hybrid classes model for its middle and high school students until after spring break. District superintendent Max Heinrichs changed his recommendation because of ongoing safety concerns.
Mental health budget increased
Extraordinary stress caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, and commissioners’ belief it will drive up demand for mental health treatment, prompted them to increase funding to help defray its cost. Prairie View requested the county give $93,798 this year. The agency’s request letter said behavioral health interventions are important to avoid preventable hospitalizations and unnecessary visits to emergency departments.
County gets pleasant surprise on insurance rates
County commissioners got a pleasant surprise Monday when they found out employee insurance premiums won’t rise much this year. “This is going to be one of the best years in the last several years,” commissioner Randy Dallke said. “Ordinarily it’s been a sky-high increase.”
Commissioners want to move meeting times
County commissioner likely will shift their meetings to Monday afternoon instead of Morning starting in March to allow county council Brad Jantz to attend. Jantz has often been unable to attend commission meetings, or unable to be at the meeting when it began.
Civil division cases
County jail arrests and bookings
Criminal sivision cases
Marriage licenses granted
Police activity reports
Traffic division cases
Small businesses, cities struggle with faster pace
Technology has blown up bookkeeper’s spreadsheets in favor of software that manages routine work such as payroll tax deduction with a few keystrokes. But many are finding out the consequences of clicking on the wrong field can be expensive. especially when mistakes can lead to tax penalties.
Changes in loan rules create confusion
Lawmakers and bureaucrats can’t make up their minds on policy for a loan program that helped small businesses with COVID-19 related losses and business owners and even bankers are confused. The Paycheck Protection Program’s first round of loans began last spring.
Seniors can get help with utility bills, taxes
Seniors looking for help filing income tax forms, claiming tax rebates for COVID-19 stimulus payments that did not arrive, filing for Homestead refunds, and applying for utility assistance can make an appointment with Marion County Department on Aging. “We will not be doing in-person appointments for assistance this year,” director Gayla Ratzlaff said. “We will do Homestead and Low Income Energy Assistance Program applications over the phone.”
Making a rec out of politics
It’s time for a time out in the newest sport to hit Marion County politics: a “you-know-what”-ing match over what’s supposed to be a cooperative venture between the city and the school district in Marion. We don’t mean a time out in the sense of players regrouping on the sidelines and conferring with those urging them on. There’s been too much of that already. What we mean is a time out like when a bratty preschooler is ordered to sit in a corner after whaling on a sibling.
ANOTHER DAY IN THE COUNTRY:
Considering the essentials
'Proud Patriots' group meets
As an impeachment trial for former president Donald Trump loomed, a group of Marion County Trump supporters held a secret meeting Thursday evening. The meeting was supposed to be secret. A reporter was at first welcomed to the meeting, but a few minutes later told to leave.
Senior food boxes available
Free government commodities coming
Government commodities will be available Feb. 17. Pickup sites on Wednesday include Burns Community Center, morning; Goessel Mennonite Church, 5 p.m.; Lincolnville Community Center, 11 a.m. to noon; Lost Springs, 11 a.m.; Marion Senior Center, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.; Peabody Senior Center, 10 to 11:30 a.m.; Pilsen, 11:30 a.m.; Ramona Community Center, morning; and Tampa Senior Center, 3 to 4 p.m.
Senior Citizens to meet
Senior Citizens of Marion County will have its monthly meeting at 10 a.m. Feb. 19. Marion Seniors will be serving lunch. Reservations, needed by Feb. 17, can be made by calling (620) 382-2942 or (620) 382-3580. Mask wearing is encouraged, and everyone will sit at least six feet apart.
Senior center menus
140 years ago
Honor roll area schools
3 schools triumph, 2 others struggle
Marion county teams struggled and triumphed at home and on the road as Hillsboro High enjoyed a hot streak, Goessel High’s boys picked up two wins, and Peabody one more for the season. Both Marion and Centre High teams posted losses as Marion struggled on the road against Sterling and Centre fell to Herington during homecoming.
Wrestlers take step toward state
Covid protocols made the path to Class 3-2-1A’s state wrestling tournament both longer and tougher for area teams this weekend with the district field being added to cut back on spectators. The district field also marked the end for any wrestling finishing outside the top 4.
Built to last: a 61-year love story
Dale and Loretta “Tootsie” Snelling met when they were teen-agers and became high school sweethearts. Nearly 61 years, four children, and 13 grandchildren later, they are still going strong.
Valentine’s Day is the second most popular day of the year for sending cards. Christmas is the most popular. About 1 billion Valentine’s Day cards are exchanged each year.
Resident proposes city cameras
Peabody residents need to take measures to combat overlooked crime, resident Kirshawn Stevens said at Monday’s city council meeting. “When it comes to things around town, some of it goes unmonitored,” he said. “On behalf of public safety and everything like that, as a community, we need to come together and raise a fund to better secure us as a population.”
Sewer backup ends with water line break
A Peabody fire hydrant flushing took place last week when a contractor hit a water line in the 200 block of N. Vine St., which occurred because the line had been marked wrong, John Beeman said at Monday’s city council meeting. Public works superintendent Lucas Larsen attempted to shut off water at the house, but had to flush hydrants for several blocks because of valve issues. It took two-and-a-half to three hours to pump the water.
County settles on S. Hutch center as site for its recyclables
Recycling is being taken to a facility in South Hutchinson after county commissioners Monday agreed to a temporary compromise on a new site. For now, county recyclables will be taken to a South Hutchinson facility that charges a tipping fee of $98.50 a ton. It’s hoped that will last about 16 days.
Burn bans, county radios vex area's fire chiefs
A group of county fire chiefs aired their frustrations about several problems they have faced to county commissioners Monday. The first to speak was Goessel fire chief Matthew Voth, who reminded commissioners that a burn resolution was passed in December 2017 giving the county emergency manager power to impose a temporary burn ban and notify commissioners as soon as possible.
Outlaws spend evening dining at Harvey House
If a group of people who had dinner Saturday at Florence’s Harvey House walked into the establishment during its heyday, the staff might have sent for the sheriff. Flint Hills Outlaws, a train and stage robbery and historical shoot out re-enactor group from McPherson, came to the museum for a meal and a discussion of the house’s history instead. Flint Hills Outlaws re-enacts robberies and shoot outs from the 1870s to 1890s.
Man shoots self while cleaning his gun
A 36-year-old Hillsboro man received a lesson in gun safety last week when he shot himself in the leg while drinking and cleaning a loaded gun. “I’m sure it hurt,” police chief Dan Kinning said. “That’s why alcohol and guns don’t mix.”
County compromises on ambulance station
County commissioners compromised with Hillsboro Monday by agreeing to build a new ambulance station in return for land and water and sewer services from the city. Emergency Medical Service director Travis Parmley suggested a month ago that the county purchase a former gun shop in north Hillsboro and build a two-bay garage for the ambulances.
Odds of coronavirus low, but flu still sickens residents
The best protection efforts against a frightening new virus making headlines worldwide are the same as one to prevent spread of influenza, which remains a greater risk to health in the county, county health nurse Diedre Serene said. The World Health Organization and Centers for Disease Control are monitoring an outbreak of a newly identified coronavirus that first appeared in Wuhan, China. It is known as 2019-nCoV.
Legislative candidate visits Democrats
Christy Davis, a candidate for Kansas House of Representatives’ First Congressional District, spoke at Marion County Democrats’ regular meeting at Peabody Township Library. Christy, a business owner who lives in Cottonwood Falls, discussed personal tax exemptions, increasing child care tax credit, as well as Medicare and social security.
'Fly Girls' library's annual community book selection
“Fly Girls,” by Keith O’Brien, is the book participants in Marion City Library’s One Community, One Book reading event will read. Myrta Billings will lead a discussion of the book at 7 p.m. March 24 in the Kansas Room at the library.
Insurance agent breaks down statistics on dog bites
Insurance agent Alex Case gave Marion Kiwanis members a view of the problem of dog bite injuries in Marion County and nationwide Feb. 5 when he spoke at the club’s weekly meeting. Case said statistics show that 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs each year in the United States.
2019 CONSERVATION AWARD WINNERS
KANSAS BANKER AWARD SOIL HEALTH:
Ryan and Jamie Peters
CONTINUING CONSERVATION AWARD:
Gerald and Jeanne Rziha
KANSAS BANKERS WATER QUALITY AWARD:
Frank Svitak, owner with Ed Svitak operator
KANSAS BANKER GRASSLAND AWARD:
County jail arrests and bookings
Police activity reports
Lifelong conservationist gives up his cows
Gerald Rziha has been a longtime careful steward of the land. The Tampa farmer and rancher has been recognized by Marion County Conservation District in the past with the Grassland Conservation Award.
Calving weather 'much better' rancher says
Donnie Hett of Marion wouldn’t say how many cattle he has, but he has “way too many when I’m feeding them, and not near enough when I’m selling them.” Hett has a bunch of heifers that started calving the first half of January. He hasn’t had any losses so far.
Safety a top priority working with grain
Before employees at Cooperative Grain and Supply in Hillsboro can work in the company’s grain facilities, they review a checklist, which is important to ensure proper safety measures are taken, grain coordinator Dick Tippin said. “We do safety training with our employees and have different protocols in place,” he said. “Permits have to be filled out before they go into a potentially dangerous environment, and things that could harm you are locked out.”
One for all or all for one?
One of our favorite stories comes from a conversation overheard at a civic club meeting a few years back. One member — a bit of an intellectual — was talking about a book he read over the weekend.
LETTER TO THE EDITOR:
Area farmer to entertain at Pioneer Bluffs
Peabody farmer and rancher Derek Klingenberg will perform at 1:30 p.m. March 7 at Pioneer Bluffs Center for Ranching Heritage, a mile north of Matfield Green. Klingenberg combines his love of music and entertainment with daily agriculture life.
Senior citizens board schedules to meet Feb. 21
Senior Citizens of Marion County, Inc. board of directors will meet 10 a.m. Feb. 21 at Marion Senior Center. Reservations for lunch are due Feb. 19. Call Janet Bryant at (620) 392-2942, or Marion County Dept. on Aging, (620) 382-3580. Reservations for transportation are due Feb. 20 by calling the department.
Cowboys next focus at Lifelong Learning
Author Jim Gray will be featured 9:45 a.m. Feb. 21 at Tabor College’s Lifelong Learning program in Tabor’s Shari Flaming Center for the Arts. Executive director of Ellsworth’s National Drovers Hall of Fame, Gray will discuss the ties between cowboys of the past and today’s large, evolving beef industry.
Blood drive will be Feb. 17
Hillsboro FFA will host a blood drive from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Feb. 18 in Hillsboro Middle School’s gymnasium. Sign up to donate at redcrossblood.org.
Calendar of events
SCHOOL AND SPORTS
Peabody-Burns girls fall short against Eagles
If only the Peabody High School girls’ basketball team could’ve done more in the first half Friday against Elyria Christian, the Warriors might have finally picked up their first win. It wasn’t to be, though, as the Eagles’ 18-10 halftime lead was the difference in the outcome, surviving a 32-24 scare.
Forensics riding success to greater heights
Peabody-Burns kicked off its forensics season in January, and junior Sarah Spencer wasted no time becoming the school’s first state qualifier of the season. “I just want to keep improving my poetry that’s already qualified so it will still be really good at state,” she said. “I’m going to move forward about the same so I can improve myself for when I get to state.”
Students share positivity
Peabody-Burns students promoted positive thinking Friday at lunchtime, writing down uplifting or encouraging comments on cut-out hearts from TADA/STAND members. Over 180 hearts were turned in, which were put up in the school’s common area to share with other students.
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