New safety surface on Elementary School playground thanks to Project Playground

Sabrina Hughbanks (22)

Homecoming Queen Nicole Blick

Trae Rathgeber (22 at left) gets a nudge from Cunninghams Aiden Cochran (10).

MOM IS WATCHING- South Barber junior Bailey Roberts brings the ball down the court while her mom, Kay, watches from the front row bleachers in the background.

Grant Cantrell (20 at left) tries for a steal.

Anna Perez looks for a teammate to pass the ball to.

 

Friday Night Basketball

GIRLS: South Barber 51    Central Christian 27

BOYS: South Barber 41     Central Christian 63

HOPL Jr. High Tournament Pairings

The Heart of the Plains League Jr. High Basketball Tournament begins Saturday, Feb. 13, at Central Christian in Hutchinson. Semi-finals will be played Feb. 15 and finals will be held on Thursday, February 18.

In the girl’s bracket, South Barber is the 4th seed and will play Skyline at 2:00 p.m. on Feb. 13. Cunningham is the top seed.

On the boy’s side of the bracket, South Barber is the 5th seed and opens play Feb. 13 at 12:45 p.m. against Norwich. Skyline is the top seed for the boys.

Utility Billing Dates to Change

New linemen Clay Nicholson, left, and Dusty Robinson.

New linemen Clay Nicholson, left, and Dusty Robinson.

By REX ZIMMERMAN

City of Kiowa electric customers will see a slight change in their billing dates as a result of action taken at Monday night’s monthly meeting of the Kiowa City Council.

Council passed Ordinance No. 427 which calls for utility bills to be out by the 15th of each month, with the due date set for the 25th of the month. Cutoff would be 10 days after the due date. City Clerk Marlo Rugg said basically the ordinance will just move everything back about two weeks.

The change was needed to better align the city with the billing cycle of KMEA’s billing cycle, which is the city’s new electric supplier.

City Administrator Lou Leone told council members that Western Farmers and KMEA have reached a verbal agreement regarding the Facility Maintenance Agreement, which will allow the city to shift providers to KMEA. The city is also working with EMG consultant Greg Wright on rates so the city can bill properly once the transition is made. Changes in the billing cycle will take effect this month.

Bills, Reports, Hirings

In opening action, council approved agenda and previous minutes, including a special meeting on Feb. 4 where two journeyman linemen were hired for the city’s electric department. Dusty Robinson and Clay Nicholson were on hand at Monday night’s meeting to meet council and the public.

In a related matter, Lou Leone said that the cities of Attica and Isabel have both been approached about forming an electric service pool to share equipment and employees. He noted that Attica, for instance, has the necessary equipment to set electric poles, while Kiowa now has the skilled technicians. The goal, he said, is to reduce the costs of maintaining three separate electric departments while providing customers first class service.

Council also approved expenditures and reports from the city superintendent, police department and Planning Commission.

The Planning Commission approved a carport for the residence at 9th and Chatham.

Police Chief Steven Johnson reported that two home burglaries have been reported recently in Kiowa, as well as several thefts outside the city limits. The city administrator also advised residents with WiFi internet service to be sure and have password protection to prevent someone from driving by and hooking up to your internet service.

Budget Year In Review

The city administrator next gave an end of year budget review which actually had some good news in it.

Mr. Leone said that the Sewer Fund, which received a budget amendment at the end of last year, will see a carry over of around $7,500 due expected expenses that did not occur. The Water Fund, which also had a budget amendment, also had less than expected expenses but still would have needed an amendment.

The Electric Fund was under spent last year by approximately $216,182 and the General Fund has a remaining budget authority of $54,878, but he added that all the amounts of the various budgets are subject completion of the audit later this month. Mr. Leone added that corrective action has been taken for the Water Fund to help keep it within the budget.

Administrator Items

Lou Leone told the council that he has identified seven city vehicles that can be removed from the city’s insurance and another that will be retired, saving the city around $2,300 per year.

He also received approval to attend the League of Kansas Municipalities budget class on March 11 in Pratt. Cost is $75 plus mileage.

Mr. Leone reported that staff has been reviewing plans to conduct irrigation out of the southern wastewater lagoon at select times of the year with the goal of reducing stress on the berms which will extend the life of the sewer ponds.

In final action, council voted to donate the Community Building for Project Prom on April 16th and approved expenses for City Attorney Laurel McClellan to attend the Rural Water District Meeting in March.

Councilman Russ Molz had questions about barking dogs and it was noted there is a city ordinance covering the issue. Councilman Tom Wells also asked if the city is prepared to have refugees come to town, feeling the issue should be brought up “just in case” it happens. Council also held a pair of executive sessions for employee evaluations and to discuss business which contains confidential data of second parties.

 

Kiowa Chamber has Busy Year Planned for 2016

By REX ZIMMERMAN

The Kiowa Chamber of Commerce kicked off a new year as it elected officers and started planning events for 2016. The meeting was held Tuesday, January 12, at The Sideline.

Janet Robison and Cindy Archuleta were elected Co-President for the Chamber while Pam Cox was re-elected Secretary and Bob Cox was re-elected as Treasurer. Bob Hays was again named as Chamber Historian. Members of the Board of Directors are Faye Conaway, Bob Pedigo, Bill Watson, De Coyle, Nicole Kraft, Shawna and John Schupbach, Keith Rathgeber, Roger Robison, Laurie Hiltner, Carol Meyer and Deb Cox.

Some of the upcoming events planned for 2016 are the Easter Egg Hunt and games on March 26, Labor Day activities on Sept. 5 and the Christmas Open House on December 4. Pioneer Days will also be held in the Spring but dates haven’t been established as of yet.

More Lights Planned

Chamber members also discussed upcoming projects for the year which include adding more Christmas lights to the downtown Centennial Park as they seemed to be enjoyed by the community. The Chamber also thanked all the businesses and groups that decorated the light poles for the holiday season. They said several people commented on how festive they looked.

The Chamber is also beginning its 2016 dues collection soon. It was noted that Labor Day alone takes over $3,800, but with dues, donations and volunteers it was again a huge success last fall.T

Shirts & More to Close

TO the South Barber community, our customers, family, and friends:

After 35 years, the time has finally come for Shirts & More to close the doors. It has not been an easy decision, but the last 18 months of health issues, continual dr. appts., etc. has made it clear that “hanging on” to something that has been our lives for so many years is becoming a hardship rather than a joy. Beginning January 26, inventory will be marked down and February 5, 2016 will be our final day of business.

Shirts & More became a reality in February of 1981. 1 was blessed beyond measure when I hired an employee, Janet Robison, in 1982 that became my best friend and “partner in crime”. Shirts & More has allowed Janet and I to serve South Barber in our own unique way, and we have received so much pleasure in doing so over the years. We are forever thankful for the opportunity to be part of downtown Kiowa for so long. How do we even begin to express our heartfelt gratitude to the South Barber Community and surrounding areas for the many years of support?

The building has been sold and will continue to house a Main Street business. The new owner will be making an announcement in the near future.

Thank you for your support and patronage over the years. We look forward to what the future holds!

Mike and Laurie Hiltner & family

Janet and Roger Robison & family

 

Girl’s 54 Classic Bracket

Homecoming Royalty

South Barber high School celebrated homecoming Friday night during halftime of the boy’s basketball game with Cunningham. Senior Nicole Blick, left, was crowned Homecoming Queen. She received her “homecoming kiss” from Trenton Jahay, the only senior on this year’s team. He also escorted all of the senior candidates. Homecoming royalty pictured above (left to right) standing in back are Chieftain players Trae Rathgeber, Tanner Cloyd, Trenton Jahay and Cole Coggins. Seated are Kylee Wright, Sabrina Hughbanks, Reiley Courson, Queen Nicole Blick, Caitlin Jacobs and ReAnna Dunlap. Kindergarten helpers in front are Delaney Allen, Evi McNett, Keagan McMurray and Randy Torres.

South Barber high School celebrated homecoming Friday night during halftime of the boy’s basketball game with Cunningham. Senior Nicole Blick, left, was crowned Homecoming Queen. She received her “homecoming kiss” from Trenton Jahay, the only senior on this year’s team. He also escorted all of the senior candidates. Homecoming royalty pictured above (left to right) standing in back are Chieftain players Trae Rathgeber, Tanner Cloyd, Trenton Jahay and Cole Coggins. Seated are Kylee Wright, Sabrina Hughbanks, Reiley Courson, Queen Nicole Blick, Caitlin Jacobs and ReAnna Dunlap. Kindergarten helpers in front are Delaney Allen, Evi McNett, Keagan McMurray and Randy Torres.

BOE Accepts Resignations, Extends Superintendent’s Contract, Talks Weight Room

By REX ZIMMERMAN

South Barber accepted the resignation of two long-time teachers, discussed the weight room and extended the superintendent’s contract at its monthly meeting Monday, January 11.

All board members were present – Dooli Rugg, Mariah Doherty, Melissa Simpson, Mark Pollock, Deb Helfrich and Mike Anderson – along with board president Steve Allen.

Principal Reports

After approval of previous minutes, the agenda, and current bills totaling $340,705.15, the board first heard from PreK-6 principal Marcia Cantrell. She reported on progress with On Watch program, and said presentations were recently given by Katt Scheck and Samantha Nichols.

Principal Cantrell also expectations of both staff and students as they work to build “Lil Chief Pride”.

Accelerated Readers had their parties with the 1st thru 3rd graders going to the Wellness Center in Alva to swim, while the 4th thru 6th graders were treated to an “old-time” drive-in movie in the gym. The teachers did the decorations, she said, and even had a playground with a swing set. A few of the students also brought their own cardboard automobiles to get that drive-in feel.

Students participating in the SWKMEA Honor Choir in Dodge City are Randlyne Dunlap, Grace Cantrell, Clare Pollock, Alex Gorden and Gwydion Lamb.

Principal Brent Shaffer next gave his report for the 7-12 building and said that 10 students made the Superintendent’s Honor Roll (4.0) for the second quarter.

Scotty McCartney, a Chaparral High School graduate, began student teaching duties on February 8 in Steve Roberts’ classes.

South Barber FFA hosts Meats Judging on Jan. 20 and attends KSU AgEd Public Speaking on February 6. Mrs. Masters has 22 students out for Forensics, which is now underway. The South Barber Forensics Meet is scheduled for Saturday, February 6.

Scholar Bowl is also hitting high gear with the HOPL Scholar Bowl set for Friday, Jan. 22, at Cunningham. Regional Scholar Bowl is Feb. 4 at Burden-Central. Jr. High Scholar Bowl is also ramping up.

South Barber students participating in the SWKMEA Middle School Honor Choir Jan. 23 in Dodge City are Maddison Dotts, Hannah McCullough and Lacee Wolf.

Principal Shaffer also said that a “Pop Concert” will be held on Monday, Feb. 1, in the auditorium. It is a good chance for the public to enjoy the talents of some outstanding young musicians.

P1 to Do Study

Superintendent Dr. Andi Williams received board approval to hire P1 Group to do a comprehensive study of the high school building at a cost of $4,000 to see what options the district might have to keep the facility functional in the coming years, especially with the demands of new technology. P1 is currently working on getting a new roof on the district office, and just a couple of years ago directed the remodeling of the elementary building.

Dr. Williams also reported that 12 candidates have applied to date for the PreK-6 principal’s position, which is being vacated by the retirement of Marcia Cantrell at the end of the school year. Deadline for applications is Feb. 17 and Dr. Williams recommended that a board of staff, administration and board members be formed to hold interviews the last week and February and first week of March.

Lengthy Discussion on

SB Weight Room Issues

The weight room at South Barber High School has been a valuable asset for both the school and the community, and is supported financially by the South Barber Recreation Commission to help pay utility costs. Access is provided by programmable card keys.

A written agreement between the school district and rec commission prompted a lot of questions from board members, especially when it comes to who has access and when, and just who is ultimately in control. A refundable deposit was also discussed, most likely $25, for each card with a separate $5 fee for card replacement.

Most board members and administration agreed that the school’s athletic director should have the ultimate decision in matters with use and scheduling of the facility, and would set it up as best for everyone concerned with school use, such as high school weight programs, taking precedence.

Superintendent Williams said she would put that information in a new draft of the agreement for board members to review.

Teacher Retirements

The board accepted the resignation of two veteran teachers effective at the end of the current school year. Veda Holt has taught 53 years, mostly in the South Barber district, and Jeannie Albright has been a teacher at South Barber for 42 years. Her resignation included a very appreciative letter that was read aloud to the board.

Contract Extended

Following a 30 minute executive session, the board voted unanimously to extend the contract of Superintendent Williams for two years. She is currently in her first year as superintendent.

In other action, the board:

  • Approved a POV mileage rate of 54 cents per mile, down from the previous 57 cents.
  • Approved two Kansas Assn. of School Board policy updates and had a first read on a dozen other policy updates for possible action at next month’s meeting.

City Makes Appointments, Talks Electricity

By REX ZIMMERMAN

Kiowa’s City Council made annual appointments and discussed electrical issues at Monday night’s monthly meeting. Council members present were Russ Molz, Bill Watson, R.L. Simpson, Tom Wells and Brian Hill, along with Mayor Brandon Farney.

In opening action, the board approved the agenda, previous minutes, and bills for payment

Annual Items

Mayor Farneyt made annual appointments – the First State Bank and Peoples Bank were named as official city depositories, and The Kiowa News was appointed as the official city newspaper

Funds Transferred

In previous years, council has agreed to transfer an amount of money equal to the remaining funds in the Fire Department’s budget to the Public Safety Equipment Fund for future use by the department. This year, council again approved that request and transferred $2,833 from the Electric Fund to the Public Safety Equipment Fund.

GAAP Waiver Approved

Next item of business was approval of Resolution No. 270 which gives the city a waiver of the GAAP accounting procedures, a move most cities of Kiowa’s size make annually.

Electric Maintenance Contract

The current contract with Alfalfa Electric Cooperative (AEC) to provide a journeyman lineman expires on January 31. Eric Sommerhauser and Dusty Robinson from Strom Power Services were on hand to present a proposal to provide the city with an electrical lineman until the city has hired a new one, and services beyond that if needed.

Their proposal called for a fee of $3,500 per month which would provide the city with a two-man crew for 20 hours of work per month. A fee of $175 per hour would be charged for more than 20 hours.

The two men said Strom has several crews based out of Anthony and even more in other area cities and could respond to Kiowa’s need in 30 to 40 minutes. They said the contract proposal would guarantee Kiowa has a dedicated crew to respond to needs – and more help if it is needed.

“We’re just wanting to help,” Mr. Sommerhauser said, adding that no work would ever be done without Kiowa’s request. Their company can also do a complete assessment of the city’s electrical system from the generator on up if requested.

Council had several questions for the two men and thanked them for their proposal.

Administrator’s Report

The city administrator told council members he has began working with the Rural Water District board and the City of Hardtner to purchase chlorine at a bulk rate, which he said should see each group a savings of almost $23 a bottle, which over the course of a year will add up.

He noted that ten applications have been received for the lineman position and he would like to get that number down to three or four for the council to look at.

Mr. Leone also said that staff is working with consultant Greg Wright on the electric rates so the city can be prepared to bill properly when the transition to KMEA is completed. He said staff is also working on an ordinance to adjust the current billing dates to better align it with KMEA’s invoice procedures.

It should be a fun opening at the Kiowa Swimming Pool on Memorial Weekend as Coca-Cola has agreed to provide a banner and five to 10 cases of water and soda.

In final notes, Mr. Leone said he is working on an agreement for volunteers who wish to provide services to the city, and he and City Superintendent Gary Johnson are beginning to look at purchasing a new trash truck. The current trucks are 2009 and 2002 models. There is around $125,000 budgeted this year for a new truck.

Final Notes

Police Chief Steven Johnson reported on successful gift giveaways during Christmas and Fun Day at the grade school, which he hopes will be an annual event. He also said the county attorney is providing some new targets for the shooting range, and discussion continued into who should have access to the range and the liability involved.

Mark Lambert also visited with the council to request improvements on Commercial Street as it is very muddy after the pipeline work done last year. Council agreed to check into it and possibly get a rock surface on it.

Council finished the meeting with two executive sessions. No action was taken.

New M.D. at Kiowa District Healthcare

Hull 2

Kiowa District Healthcare is pleased to announce the addition of Dr. Susan Hull M.D. to our Medical Staff.

Dr. Hull received her undergraduate degree from Northwestern Oklahoma State University in Alva Oklahoma. In 2008 she graduated from the Kansas University School of Medicine.

Her residency in Internal Medicine was completed at KU School of Medicine in Wichita Kansas at Via Christi- St. Francis, Wesley Medical Center, and the Bob Dole Veterans Hospitals from 2008-2011.

In 2012, Dr. Hull opened her own Clinic in Waynoka Oklahoma where she still presides as the owner and physician. She is pleased to join the Kiowa District Healthcare team.

Dr. Hull is married to Dwight Hull and has three children.

To schedule an appointment with Dr. Susan Hull M.D., please call 620-825-4121.