Glenna Williams is the new Miss South Barber

HAYS, Kan. — Ten percent of Kansans think the state’s economy is “very good” or “excellent,” but 26 percent think it is “poor” or “very poor,” according to the latest Kansas Speaks survey of public opinion.
Slightly less than two-thirds of respondents indicated they felt Kansas was on the “wrong track,” while slightly more than one-third believe Kansas is on the “right track.”
Now in its ninth year, Kansas Speaks is a series of surveys conducted in the spring and fall by the Docking Institute of Public Affairs at Fort Hays State University.
On other pressing or controversial issues of the day, Kansans favor tax increases more than budget cuts to fix the budget deficit, but barely, and marijuana, medical and recreational, enjoys majority support, medical significantly so.
On the state budget crisis, just over two-fifths of respondents wanted to cut spending exclusively, while another one-fourth wanted to increase taxes exclusively. More than one-third favored a combination of tax increases and lower spending. Republicans and those with lower education levels were more likely to favor spending cuts, while Democrats and those with higher education levels were more likely to favor increasing taxes.
Respondents who said they were in favor of “increasing taxes” or “both” were asked which taxes they would increase. Over half (56 percent) favored increasing income tax, 39 percent favored increasing sales taxes, and 19 percent favored increasing property tax. Republicans and women were more likely to favor an increased sales tax, while Democrats and men were more likely to favor increasing the income tax.
Similar to results of previous years, when asked about preferences for various taxation categories, respondents were most in favor of raising taxes on large corporations and the top income earners. The vast majority were against raising taxes on small business and the middle class.
The Docking Institute conducted the spring 2017 Kansas Speaks survey from Feb. 23 to April 11. A random sample of adult residents of Kansas age 18 and older was surveyed by telephone to assess their attitudes and opinions regarding various issues of interest to Kansas citizens.
A total of 1,362 Kansas residents were contacted; 573 completed the survey, a 42-percent response rate. The margin of error was 4 percent at a 95-percent confidence level.
The full report, in pdf form, is available through the Kansas Speaks link on the page at www.fhsu.edu/docking.
On specific taxes, 69 percent “strongly” or “somewhat” support increasing taxes on cigarettes and cigars, and 68 percent “strongly” or “somewhat” support increasing taxes on alcohol. Seventy percent of respondents “strongly” or “somewhat” support closing the LLC loophole.
Of respondents who said they favored “decreasing spending” or “both,” 32 percent favored decreasing spending on social services, 30 percent favored cutting higher education, 25 percent favored cutting funds for roads and highways, and 13 percent favored decreasing spending on K-12 education.
Republicans were more likely to favor decreasing spending on higher education and social services. Males were more likely favor cuts to K-12 education.
Legalizing recreational marijuana for individuals 21 and older to allow taxation by the state was “strongly” or “somewhat” supported by 50 percent of respondents, and 40 percent “somewhat” or “strongly” opposed the idea.
But medical marijuana was at least “somewhat” supported by 76 percent and was opposed by only 14 percent.” Of the political categories, only the strongest Republicans were more likely to oppose than support allowing medical marijuana.
Dissatisfaction with Gov. Sam Brownback declined slightly from last year, to 56 percent “very dissatisfied” from 62 percent a year ago; 71 percent are to some degree dissatisfied with Brownback, down from 74 percent one year ago.
For President Donald Trump, 45 percent of respondents showed some level of satisfaction, while 44 percent of respondents showed some level of dissatisfaction.
On President Trump’s relationship with the Russian government or President Vladimir Putin, 49 percent of respondents were at least “somewhat uncomfortable,” and 32 percent were at least “somewhat comfortable.” Males and Republicans tended to be the most comfortable, with Democrats and Independents being more likely to express discomfort.
On the perennial question of rating Kansas as a place to live, about half indicated Kansas was “very good” or “excellent,” but 6 percent, a record high over the history of the survey, rated Kansas “poor” or “very poor.” Republican and Independent respondents were more likely to rate Kansas highly as a place to live.
For more information, contact Dr. Gary Brinker, director of the Docking Institute of Public Affairs, 785-628-5949, gdbrinker@fhsu.edu.

 

Bailey Roberts – Valedictorian

Spencer Kimmell – Salutatorian

Thirteen seniors will receive diplomas on Sunday, May 14, as South Barber High School holds Commencement Exercises in the high school gymnasium.

The proceedings get underway at 2:00 p.m.

Honorary junior conductors, Trae Rathgeber and Idallis Shaffer, will lead the seniors to their seats during the Processional, played by vocal music instructor Boram Shin. Ushers will be Slater Blick and Kaleigh Velasquez.

High school Principal Brent Shaffer will welcome the students and guests to graduation. He will be followed by the Salutatory and Class President’s remarks by Spencer Kimmell. A vocal ensemble consisting of seniors Grant Cantrell, Brian Farney, Sabrina Hughbanks, Bailey Roberts and Emily Rugg will perform “There is a Season”, followed by the Valedictory address by Bailey Roberts.

An entertaining slide show of the senior class throughout their school years will be shown, and Principal Shaffer will then present the class for graduation. Diplomas will be presented by USD 255 Board of Education members Mike Miller and Dooli Rugg.

South Barber Class of 2017 members are: Grant Matthew Cantrell, Tanner Levi Cloyd, Gavin Stewart Doherty, Brian Benjamin Farney, Dale William Hoch, Kacee Danae Hostetler,

Sabrina Rae Hughbanks, Spencer Christian Kimmell, Andraia Nicole McKitrick, Anna Marisela Cunningham Perez, Madison Jane Polson, Bailey Marie Roberts and Emily Dianne Rugg.

Be sure to view the Senior Page elsewhere in this issue.

By REX ZIMMERMAN

South Central Telephone Assn. held its 2017 annual meeting on Friday, April 28, at the Kiowa Community Building. A capacity crowd enjoyed a delicious meal catered by Raykie’s Catering of Medicine Lodge and heard a report of the past year’s activities.

Mike VanCampen, president of the board of directors, welcomed everyone to the meeting and dinner and handled the election of officers. Paul Harbaugh was unopposed for re-elected as director from the Kiowa exchange with 108 votes, and Kenneth Dohm was re-elected as director from the Lake City/Sun City exchange by an 18-14 vote count over Lori Johnson.

Other directors are Brent Garvie from Burlington/Byron exchange, Jesse Blasi from Iuka, Ronnie Patterson from Hazelton, and Dan Hrencher from Sharon.

The financial report for the association showed that even through difficult periods, the association has remained strong financially with equity about five times the amount of debt. The bottom line “net margin” showed a total for 2016 of $482,918.00, an increase of over $20,000 from 2015.

General Manager Kelly Johnson said in his report that uncertainty in the industry, especially at the federal level, has finally cleared allowing the company to forecast revenues with more certainty. This will allow the company to continue expansion projects in the Harper and Anthony areas while streamlining expenses and “focusing on what our customers need”.

Johnson reported on a new service, URTech, which is provided by local employees and will give customers more and better support. He also said that work on upgrades on electronic hardware on the outside of customer’s residences and businesses in the Kiowa and Burlington exchanges will begin very shortly and should be completed by Fall.

Johnson also reminded all SCTelcom customers that the battery backup which was installed in their homes and businesses with the fiber optics system several years ago needs a new battery every three or four years. The batteries can be picked up at any SCTelcom office at no charge.

“All in all, things are going pretty well,” Johnson concluded.

Scholarships were next awarded to seniors living in SCTelcom exchanges. Students receiving the honors were Kacee Hostetler, Spencer Kimmell, Bailey Roberts and Emily Rugg from South Barber High School, Kayley Geesling from Fairfield High School, Kendra England from Medicine Lodge High School and Jonathan Armbruster from Burlington High School.

Several door prizes and gift certificates were given away to conclude the meeting.

State intro

Kansas has set a new record, one it never hoped to see and never hopes to surpass.

As of March 8, more than 502,000 acres have burned in Clark County (351,000-400,000 acres) and Comanche County (approximately 151,000 acres), making it the most widespread single fire on record for the state. For comparison, the Anderson Creek fire of 2016 burned some 312,427 acres in Barber and Comanche Counties.

Since March 4, large grassfires have been reported in 23 counties, consuming more than 650,000 acres in all and the figure is still climbing. Although most of the fires have been contained, fires are still burning in Clark, Comanche, Ellis, Reno and Rooks Counties.

Governor Sam Brownback declared a state of disaster emergency at 7:21 p.m. March 5 to expedite state emergency response assistance to affected counties. The Kansas Division of Emergency Management activated the State Emergency Operations Center in Topeka and has staffed it 24/7 to coordinate state response operations.

KIOWA- The host and top-seed South Barber Chieftains rallied in the second half to defeat Norwich 42-39 Saturday night to win the 1A, Div. I Sub-state Tournament. The Chieftains, now 19-4 on the season, will play St. Francis (21-2) on Thursday, March 9, in quarterfinal round action at Gross Memorial Coliseum on the campus of Fort Hays State University. Tipoff is scheduled for 4:45 p.m. with the winner advancing to the semifinals on Friday. See below for 1A, Div. I boys and girls brackets.

"King" David Belohlavek and Noah Howerter

“King” David Belohlavek and Noah Howerter

Neal Gugelmeyer and Kobe Carey

Neal Gugelmeyer and Kobe Carey

Hernan Carbakp amd Haylie Drake

Hernan Carbakp amd Haylie Drake

The Kansas Commission on Veterans Affairs Office (KCVAO) Mobile Operations will be located at the Centennial Park parking lot on Wednesday, March 8th, 2017 from 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM to provide information and free assistance to veterans and family members.

Veteran services representatives will help navigate the many resources and benefits available. Such benefits might include service connected disability compensation, improved pension with aid and attendance, death pensions, VA health care options, education benefits, vocational rehabilitation and much more.

Please contact us at (785) 220-5183 for any further questions.

 

South Barber High School Drama Class will present its spring play this Friday and Sunday in the high school auditorium. Friday’s performance will begin at 7:00 p.m. and Sunday’s presentation will start at 2:00 p.m. Cost is $5.00 per person, but students can get in free with the donation of a box of facial tissues. This year’s play is “Game of Tiaras” a one-act parody of the HBO hit “Game of Thrones”. SBHS instructor and play director Meagan Henry gives a short synopsis: “When the aging king of a Magical Kingdom (England) decides to split his empire between his three daughters, Cinderella, Belle, and the Snow Queen (who in no way resembles a copyrighted character), terrible tragedy ensues. Terrible, hilarious tragedy. Combining the gut-wrenching plot twists of Game of Thrones and the soul-numbing despair of Shakespearean tragedy, this adaptation of King Lear will leave you dying with laughter as the body count mounts. When you play the Game of Tiaras, you win or you die.” Cast members pictured above are (left to right) Back Row: Bailey Roberts, Neal Gugelmeyer, Kobe Carey, Taylor Pollock, Haylie Drake, Hernan Carbajo, Kathleen Martin, Brandon Baysinger, Emily Rugg, Destiny Lyon, Madison Polson. Front row: Karlissa Little, Noah Howerter, David Belohlavek, Isaac Doherty, Dakota Vickers. Not pictured: Andraia McKitrick.SBHS photo

South Barber High School Drama Class will present its spring play this Friday and Sunday in the high school auditorium. Friday’s performance will begin at 7:00 p.m. and Sunday’s presentation will start at 2:00 p.m. Cost is $5.00 per person, but students can get in free with the donation of a box of facial tissues. This year’s play is “Game of Tiaras” a one-act parody of the HBO hit “Game of Thrones”. SBHS instructor and play director Meagan Henry gives a short synopsis: “When the aging king of a Magical Kingdom (England) decides to split his empire between his three daughters, Cinderella, Belle, and the Snow Queen (who in no way resembles a copyrighted character), terrible tragedy ensues. Terrible, hilarious tragedy. Combining the gut-wrenching plot twists of Game of Thrones and the soul-numbing despair of Shakespearean tragedy, this adaptation of King Lear will leave you dying with laughter as the body count mounts. When you play the Game of Tiaras, you win or you die.” Cast members pictured above are (left to right) Back Row: Bailey Roberts, Neal Gugelmeyer, Kobe Carey, Taylor Pollock, Haylie Drake, Hernan Carbajo, Kathleen Martin, Brandon Baysinger, Emily Rugg, Destiny Lyon, Madison Polson. Front row: Karlissa Little, Noah Howerter, David Belohlavek, Isaac Doherty, Dakota Vickers. Not pictured: Andraia McKitrick.SBHS photo