Archives for February 2012

Pleasanton Boil Advisory

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment has issued a boil water advisory for the city of Pleasanton. Scheduled maintenance in the city’s water system yesterday caused a loss of pressure. When such a loss of pressure occurs, it is possible for contaminants to enter the system. Also, chlorine residuals may drop to levels that are inadequate to protect against bacterial contamination. State officials caution that water used for drinking or preparing food should be brought to a boil for at least one minute before use, and that you should throw out ice from automatic makers.

Saturday Crash Injures Chanute Man

Highway Patrol troopers say a crash in Chanute Saturday resulted in a man being airlifted to Wichita. 21-year old Timothy Mishler of Chanute was southbound in the 18-hundred block of Evergreen in Chanute about 2am Saturday, according to a crash report, when he crossed the northbound lane and struck the curb, partially rolling his 1999 Ford Explorer and striking a tree. He was taken to Neosho Memorial by ambulance, and later airlifted to Wesley Medical Center in Wichita. Troopers say Mishler was alone in the SUV.

Allen Co Historical Society Recieves Jail Repair Grant

Allen County Historical Society will use a nearly 29-thousand dollar grant to repair the Allen County Jail Museum. THe money from the Heritage Trust Fund will go with $14,400 donated to the society for jail repairs. Director Jeff Kleuver says these funds will go a long way towards making the jail museum a stable building for the next generation.

The grant application was chosen from 46 applicants. The Heritage Trust Fund had only $1-million dollars to give this year, and total requests from the 46 applicants were $3.2-million. The committee decided to partially fund more projects, rather than completely fund a few projects, so the grante award was smaller than what had been applied for. That means only part of the work will be able to be completed. Exactly what that work is remains to be decided by the society board and the contractors who will bid on the work. Kleuver says they are hopeful repairs could begin as early as June or July.

Chanute Okays Water Plant Improvements

Improvements are about to be made to the water supply in Chanute. The Chanute City Commission has given the go-ahead to apply for a grant from the Kansas Department of Health and Environment for improvements to Chanute’s water treatment plant. Several upgrades were recommended by an energy audit in 2010, including installation of a pair of large water meters to monitor in-flow from the Neosho River. Commissioners this week authorizing Chanute City Manager J-D Lester to sign contracts to get the improvement projects started.

Iola’s Old Schools Need Rplaced

Iola’s old school buildings need expensive repairs. So expensive, in fact, that it will be more cost-effective in the long run to build new ones. Superintendent Brian Pekarek explains:

USD 257 Operations Director Scott Stanley estimates Iola’s school facilities need about $10 million worth of repairs and maintenance work over the next 10 years. USD 257 has the second oldest facilities and the oldest active high school in Kansas.

Project 17 Finalist For $1 Mill Grant

The regional economic initiative that includes Allen County and sixteen other counties in southeast Kansas is in the running for a major leadership training grant. Project Seventeen leaders, spearheaded by the region’s four state senators, have been pitching the Kansas Leadership Center this week for a one million dollar leadership training grant. More than a hundred communities and nonprofit organizations from throughout the state have been lobbying for the grants. K-L-C has whittled the list down to seven finalists, including Project Seventeen.

City, Westar say Tonight’s Power Switch Won’t Cause Outage

City and utility officials are assuring Iola residents there won’t be a repeat of last week’s middle of the night power outage as work was being done to beef up feeder lines into Iola. To avoid a repeat, Westar Energy won’t shut down its power supply to Iola during connection of a new 69,000-volt feeder line into Heartland Electric’s rural system tomorrow morning. City Administrator Carl Slaugh tells the Register Westar agreed maintain power during the transition because the computer issues that caused the city’s generators to malfunction last week have not been resolved. City generators will still be available is something unexpected happens, and there will be city staff on hand tonight to handle any emergencies.

Power Switch Keaves Iola In The Dark

Iola’s planned switch-over to self-generated power for a few hours last night did not go off without a hitch. The idea was to power the city and its environs with electricity entirely generated by the city’s main station at the old cement plant and substations throughout the city. However, when the switch-over was made last night, residents in several areas of Iola reported their power went off. Some report that the lights were out for most of the night as city crews scrambled to get things lit up again. No word yet on how the glitch happened. Iola City Administrator Carl Slaugh says the initial switch over to the city-generated power went off without a hitch and continued fine for 40 minutes. At that point there was a system failure that caused the entire city to lose power at that point. Crews worked throughout the night to restore power and it was able to be restored in some sections at various times during the night…but some areas, such as Gas city and the Iola Walmart, were without power all night and were not restored until the work was finished at about 5:30 this morning. This comes at a time when Iola is actively considering where it will get its municipal power supplies in the future. City leaders have already informed the Kansas Power Pool that Iola is pulling out of a wholesale power deal with the consortium; the City Council held a special session in January to look at options for acquiring the electricity that the city sells to residents and businesses from other sources. Last night’s power outage came during a scheduled move to accommodate connection to an upgraded 69,000 kilowatt line carrying electricity from Heartland Rural Electric. Iola will be asked to produce power again the night of Feb. 9 for about two hours just after midnight during another adjustment between city and Heartland Rural Electric lines.

Feb. 13 Deadline to Fill Out a Survey, Help Iola Schools Win a Grant

There are just days left for Iola school district parents to do their part to help the district earn a Safe Schools grant. It’s as simple as taking a survey, and the distrcit only needs a few dozen more surveys to be completed. Kansas is one of 11 states splitting nearly 40-million dollars in grant money to measure school safety at the building level and to create and support safe, drug-free, high-achievement larning environments. It starts with a 10-minute survey taken online. You only have a few days to get it done.


Sexting Allegation Lands Humboldt Teen in Jail

Charges are still pending in the case of a teenager who was arrested outside Iola High School’s homecoming dance and accused of “sexting.” As of yesterday, Allen County Attorney Wade Bowie said he had not reviewed investigation reports having to do with the arrest of 19-year old Scott L. Bedell of Humboldt. The Register reports a 13-year old boy was also taken into custody. Deputies were alerted to the happenings by parents who had seen “troubling” images on cell phones, according to Sheriff Tom Williams. Bedell is held without bond on suspicion of several felony counts; a determination on charges will be made by Bowie.