Vol. 122 , No. 22
Wednesday, February 17, 2021
Hillsboro, KS 67063
Blackouts, record cold hit county
Mike and Sharon Sorensen woke up Tuesday to the smell of smoke an hour after the motor on their stove quit. The pellets were burning, but the fan had kicked off. The power was out.
Cattlemen battle elements
Jeff Ensey hasn’t slept much in the past week and a half and doesn’t have much time to talk. Not when calves are being born during a streak of subzero cold.
Vaccine volunteers inject hope into trying times
It takes a whole county to run a COVID-19 vaccination clinic. Health department director Diedre Serene said many of those working the clinics are volunteers.
Marion's pool letter misstates facts
A Feb. 10 letter from Marion city attorney Susan Robson to Marion school board members clearly states the city no longer plans to assist with bond payments for, or the operating expenses of, the community’s pool. Despite Robson’s claim that “the original financing for the bonds called for the bonds to be paid off in 10 years,” the city’s own records tell a different story.
City to hear from schools on bill refusal
USD 408 school board president Nick Kraus told board members Monday he’ll likely address Marion city council next week about the city’s refusal to pick up the tab for its half of expenses or make bond payments for the jointly-owned sports and aquatic center. The district sent invoices in January to cover July through December pool expenses. The district billed the city $23,259.21 for pool expenses, $50,000 for half of the annual bond payment, and $9,000 for half of three years’ building insurance, which it had not billed since 2017.
She's back: Novak texts objections during meeting
Ousted commissioner Dianne Novak sent repeated texts to former colleagues during their meeting Tuesday demanding to know why the county paid zoning director Sharon Omstead’s legal expenses in a court case involving an alleged threat against her. Florence resident Tom Britain, a vocal opponent of Expedition wind farm, confronted Omstead while she was in a Florence convenience store with her child Nov. 12.
County nears 1,000th COVID case
Marion County recorded its 999th coronavirus case Tuesday even as a recent surge in new cases continued to ebb. From Halloween until about two weeks after New Year’s Day, the number of new cases each week averaged 58.
Convicted in fatal crash, driver faces new DUI
Marion resident Laramie J. Siebert, who served four years in prison for manslaughter while under the influence for his role in a crash that killed a Marion resident, formally was charged Feb. 10 with driving under the influence and transporting an open container of alcohol. Siebert also was charged with circumventing an ignition interlock device for the second time in two years following his parole.
Food program makes 1st delivery to Marion
Several volunteers helped load 180 boxes of groceries into cars at Marion’s food bank Tuesday afternoon. The special delivery was part of the United States Department of Agriculture’s Farmers to Families Food Boxes program.
Tabor family, friends to have rental option
A Hillsboro couple won approval from the city council Tuesday to operate a vacation rental at 201 E. A St. for parents and friends to visit Tabor College. Property owners Mona and Davy Hein told the city planning commission the property won’t be listed on vacation rental sites such as VRBO or Air BNB.
3-time spelling champ sets sights on state
Alexandra Carlson has set her sights on state after grabbing her third consecutive win at Marion County Spelling Bee. Her goal is to make it to the second round, a prize she didn’t get to reach for last year when state competition was canceled because of a pandemic.
Disability group to meet
The board of directors of the Harvey-Marion County CDDO will meet at 4 p.m. Feb. 22 by video.Informatin on viewing the meeting is available at harveymarioncddo.com.
A private graveside service at the Alexanderwohl Church cemetery, rural Goessel, is planned for Julia F. (Schmidt) Regier, 92, who died Monday at Bethesda Home, Goessel. Born March 7, 1928, to Otto “Nick” and Susie Schmidt, she was baptized at Tabor Mennonite Church, rural Newton, and graduated from Goessel High School in 1946.
Services were scheduled Monday for Quinn Alan Stephens, 19, who died Feb. 10 in Newton. Quinn was born Oct. 1, 2001, in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, to David “Chipper” Stephens and Pamela Herzet.
Civil division cases
County jail arrests and bookings
Criminal division cases
Police activity reports
Traffic division cases
Making a splash or drowning in lies?
The City of Marion’s attempt to soak the Marion school district for the full cost of the community’s pool appears to be more of a belly-flop by the city council than a deep dive into fiscal reason and responsibility. There’s nothing at all deep — unless it’s a deep fake — about the city’s mean-spirited, ill-informed, and inexplicably sudden effort to avoid its obligations, much as it has done over the years when cutting support to such things as the city’s museum and now-defunct chamber of commerce.
ANOTHER DAY IN THE COUNTRY:
During the deep freeze
LETTER TO THE EDITOR:
'Private,' not secret
Senior center menus
140 years ago
Getting by with a little help from their friends
Relatively good health, the assistance of friends and relatives, and the convenience of microwaves allow elderly people to stay in their homes even into their 90s. Some are more active than others, but all are thankful to be living in their own homes.
Team brightens life for seniors
Residents of Parkside Homes might be stuck inside because of bad weather and COVID-19 protocols, but their days are a little brighter knowing someone out there is thinking about them. The Hillsboro girls’ basketball team made them a cheerful Valentine’s Day poster to let them know they are not forgotten.
Group shares no-longer-needed medical equipment
Longtime caregiver Connie McMahan knows the high costs seniors face to obtain medical equipment that will aid their quality of life. She helped her good friend Dee Duggan, who needed canes, walkers, and a wheelchair to get around, make it to doctor’s appointments until she died Nov. 23 from COVID-19 complications.
SPORTS AND SCHOOL
College degrees and honors
Graduating twins will team up in college, too
Alyssa and Samantha Espinoza grew up playing sports together, first soccer, and later volleyball, basketball, and track. They will continue to be each other’s best teammates when they graduate from Centre High School this spring. The twins recently signed a letter of intent to join the basketball team at Hesston College.
Marion winless as other county teams have split weeks
The last time the Hillsboro High School girls basketball team beat the Hesston Swathers, Barack Obama was days away from being sworn in as president in 2013. The Trojans toppled the Swathers Jan. 17, 52-34, en route to finishing the year 23-3 and third place in Class 3A.
Six area wrestlers advance to regionals
Hopes for Marion and Hillsboro High School’s wrestling teams to represent the county at state are getting slimmer two weeks away from the Class 3-2-1A state tournament in Hays. Six Warriors qualified for Friday’s regional round at Eureka, but 126-pound Chance Shults, and third-ranked 195-pound Todd Palic are Marion’s last hope.
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