The man who landed his plane in Allen County last month when he found out police were waiting to arrest him in Burlington will appear in federal court in October on a charge of transporting and distributing marijuana. The U-S Attorney’s office says 58-year old Kenneth Weaver was arrested in Allen County after authorities received a tip he was not going to land in Coffey county, but here. Allen County Sheriff Brian Murphy says Weaver is to appear in federal court in Wichita October 7th. He’s being held in Harvey County, under contract to the US Marshal’s Service. On July 11th, after Weaver landed here, he could not produce a copy of his pilot’s license, which gave local deputies a reason to keep him grounded while a drug dog was brought from Wilson county. The dog found marijuana, and officers extracted 224 pounds from the aircraft.
More details on a story we first reported yesterday: the possibility that Save-A-Lot will come to Iola. Allen County is only one of the Kansas places being considered for a store soon — others include Emporia and El Dorado, and the chain plans 8 new Kansas stores total. Thrive Allen County’s Davie Toland says Save-A-Lot and Thrive have worked closely with the management team of the State Street neighborhood center in efforts to locate a supermarket where Country Mart used to be. Once a person with the interest, experience, and financial capacity to invest in licensing the Save-A-Lot name is selected additional tenant improvement and equipment incentives are available. If you know someone who fits those qualifications, or you are that person, contact Thrive Allen County.
It’s probably no surprise, but the Chanute City Council has again named Police Chief Sam Budreau as the interim City Manager while the search for a replacement to Loku Lewis, who was fired earlier this month. He’s intimately familiar with the job — the temporary part of it, anyway. Budreau has served four times as interim City Manager, and has been assistant or acting city manager under five previous City Managers. In spite of that, there’s been little to no discussion of Budreau taking the job permanently — at least not in a public forum.
The former city clerk of Altoona is under indictment for embezzling public funds. Prosecutors say 30-year-old Chrystal Scherbarth of Altoona is charged with three counts of bank fraud. The indictment alleges she used her access to the to the city’s payroll system to raise her own salary, issue unauthorized checks to herself and give herself vacation and sick leave she had not earned. The indictment also accuses Scherbarth of making more than $36,700 worth of unauthorized charges on a city credit card. She was employed with the city from June 2011 through November 2013. If convicted, she faces up to 30 years in federal prison.
The ambiguity of what actually happened that resulted in a Ferguson, MO police officer shooting and killing Michael Brown is casting light on a recent technology that was not in use in Ferguson. It’s a technology we’ve grown used to around here, though — small body-mounted video cameras worn by officers. The days aren’t far off, says Iola Police Chief Jared Warner, when officers will consider video cameras as standard-issued equipment as guns, holsters and badges. It’s already been that way for both the Iola Police and Allen County Sheriff departments for more than two years. The cameras show from the officer’s viewpoint exactly what happened, and the video is securely uploaded to a server where neither the officer or the department can tamper with it.
KDOT says work on the US-54 project is on schedule, and the road should be open before the end of October. It’s been a long year-plus as Koss Construction has done a full rebuild from the ground up. Crews this week are ouring the curb and guttering along the north side of the street, and preparing to grind a fine layer off the top of the driving lanes for better traction. That is to happen this weekend into next week. Rock Creek bridge is nearly ready for a final layer of a special silica fume concrete, designed for extra durability. WHile traffic is to be on all four lanes by the end of October, site cleanup work is expected to take until the day before Thanksgiving.
Save-A-Lot is trying to expand to Iola, and is asking for community help to make that happen. The company is asking for recommendations of a person to lead the effort buy becoming a licensee of the Save-A-Lot name for the store here. They’re looking for a self-starter with retail experience to own the license. The announcement yesterday marks a milestone in 18 months of efforts by Thrive Allen County and the countywide economic development committee to recruit a new stand-alone supermarket to Allen County. Anyone with an interest in owning the license for the Iola Save-A-Lot store is encouraged to review www.save-a-lot.com/own and then contact either the Thrive office at 365.8128.
A reminder if you live in Uniontown: you should be boiling your water before drinking it. KDHE issued a boil water advisory yesterday for Unionville. due to a loss of pressure in the system. Because low water pressure can lead to a loss of chlorine residuals and bacterial contamination, you should bring water used for drinking, ice, or food preparation to a rolling boil for one minute before using it. The advisory remains in effect until further notice.
A parking to be aware of later this week… iola City crews will chip-and-seal streets in the Southeast part of Iola starting Thursday, August 22nd and will continue through Friday, August 30th. The Location for the work will be south of Highway 54 between Cottonwood and Vermont Street to the south city limits. City officials said no on-street parking would be permitted in the affected area during the time the work is being done. Again – that area is south of highway 54 between cottonwood and vermont street to the south of city limits.
Ash Grove Cement Company’s Board of Directors elevated the company’s Chief Financial Officer to President and CEO. Randy Vance’s promotion follows three years as senior vice president of administration and chief financial officer. He’ll assume responsibility for manufacturing and sales of the company’s cement operations, as well as continuing to lead its finance, accounting, risk management, information technology and human resources departments. Before joining Ash Grove, Vance served as senior vice president, chief financial officer and treasurer of Interstate Bakeries Corporation. Prior to Interstate Bakeries, Vance served in a number of corporate finance roles at Farmland Industries.