The Kansas Department of Health and Environment has awarded about $900,000 to selected county health departments to help combat the opioid crisis. 16 county health departments will share the money. In our area, Neosho, Labette and Franklin counties were incuded on that list. KDHE says that a number of strategies will be implemented, including education, implementing media campaigns and engaging local emergency departments.
A retirement reception for Allen County Counselor Alan Weber is planned for 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. today at the assembly room in the courthouse basement. Weber has served as the county counselor for 25 years. His retirement is effective Dec. 31.
Thrive Allen County has purchased the former Waugh-Yokum and Friskel funeral home property at 16 North Buckeye in Iola from Feuerborn Family Funeral Services. Thrive has not determined its ultimate purpose for the property and will be undergoing a six-month process to evaluate all options for use of the home and adjacent land. Tax dollars were not used for the purchase and the property will remain on the tax rolls for the foreseeable future.
One man has been killed after a crane collapse south of Fredonia. Wilson County Sheriff Pete Figgin said that deputies were called Friday morning about a possible on site work related accident at the construction site of the Fredonia Water Treatment Plant. When they arrived, officers discovered two men with injuries. One of the men died from his injuries. The cause of accident has not been determined.
Thrive Allen County along with the League of Kansas Municipalities and The Kansas Health Foundation is sponsoring a training session about how local government works. “Local Government for Newbies” will tackle things like why local government matters, how to get involved, budgets, campaigning and more. The session is scheduled for Tuesday, December 11th from 5:50 to 7:30pm at LaHarpe City Hall. Food will be provided. For more information, contact Thrive Allen County at 365-8128.
Today marks Iola’s annual Downtown Christmas Block Party. Twenty-five businesses will be participating in this year’s event, which lasts from 4 to 7 p.m. One lucky person will walk away with a grand prize givaway featuring over $500 worth of gift certificates, chamber bucks and gift baskets. There will also be caroling, carriage rides, and Santa will make an appearance.
Classes will be canceled today for students at Lincoln Elementary School in Iola. That’s so students and staff will be able to attend the funeral of fourth-grade teacher Audrey Gardner who died unexpectedly early Monday. Gardner taught at the Iola school district for 16 years. Funeral services are at 1 p.m. today at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Arma.
The final vacant seat on the Allen County Regional Hospital Board of Trustees has been filled. Outgoing Allen County Commissioner John Brocker was appointed to the position by fellow commissioners Bill King and Jerry Daniels this week. The appointment will be effective on his leaving the county commission. Brocker will join Mona Hull of Humboldt in filling the two vacancies on the hospital board as Patti Boyd and Sean McReynolds are set to end their terms.
Kansas Department of Transportation is scheduled to begin the second phase of the U.S. 169 reconstruction project in Allen County on Friday. Weather permitting, the highway will be closed from Hawaii Road south to Tank Farm Road. KDOT will reopen U.S. 169 to unrestricted traffic only from Hawaii Road to Minnesota Road south of Iola.
The Appeal Period Now Open for the Proposed Floodplain Map for Wilson County. Property owners and lessees will have one more opportunity to provide engineering data through their community during the official 90-day appeal process that ends on February 6th. The local mapping project is part of a nationwide effort led by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. We have a link to the map on the Iola Radio Facebook page.
Southeast Kansas Works has announced that they will be holding a job fair next week in Chanute. It will be next Thursday, December the 13th from 10am to 2pm at the Central Park Pavillion, 101 Soth Forest. Entry level to skilled level positions will be available on multiple shifts. Bring your updated resume and be prepared to interview. For more information, go their website, sekworks.org.
At their meeting on Friday, Neosho County Commissioners told representatives of the company planning a wind generation project that a proposed 1,000-foot setback from homes is not sufficient. According to the Chanute Tribune, Apex Clean Energy plans to locate up to 130 generators in an area of about 41,000 acres. They hope to begin construction in the fall of next year. Opponents and supporters have discussed several possible distances for setbacks. Despite the disagreement, Commissioner David Bideau said that he would still like to see the project go forward. He also proposed leasing additional area to spread out the project.
Storms that rolled through southeast Kansas on Friday resulted in some damage from high winds. Law enforcement in Independence reported that a trailer was destroyed and there was widespread poer outages. KOAM-TV reported that a couple of silos were destroyed and there was roof damage to a couple of their buildings near Girard.