Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Jack Remembers -- Letters

I wrote an article about a speed trap in my hometown, and asked if your town had a speed trap like the 12th Street trap in Oak Grove. I was inundated by responses from all over the state. One woman from Centralia wrote about a speed trap a half a mile south of Hallsville. A Lafayette county elected official told me about his daughter who commutes to Warrensburg college getting a ticket on two consecutive Monday mornings on Highway 13 by the Higginsville police. It seems as if the five mile stretch between the town of Higginsville and I-70 is in the city limits of Higginsville. However, everyone who responded said the same thing that was frightening to me, “Don’t use my name”. I guess they were afraid their local police would retaliate.
I also wrote an article about the four Marine Infantrymen who urinated on two dead Taliban soldiers that outraged both Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta. Two veterans from two different wars responded.
John Madsen from Oak Grove, who I have known since high school days, and his wife Karen, are good Christians, and are active in the United Methodist Church. John, who was in the 185th Combat Engineers Battalion in Korea, said when he heard about the Marines on television, he thought it was just awful. But after reading my article, he thought maybe there wasn’t a lot of difference between that and the fact they had drilled a hole in the skull of a Korean to use as a candle holder to light their tent.
Jerry England, a Viet Nam Veteran from Mountain Grove who reads my articles on the internet, showed me an ear he had cut off a dead Viet Cong he had killed for a souvenir. He carried it in his pocket for a long time, but said he now has it laying on top of his dresser in his bedroom. Needless to say, Jerry is still single.

Jack can be reached at PO Box 40, Oak Grove, MO 64075, www.jackremembers.com, or jackremembers@aol.com

Monday, February 20, 2012

Bluejay Boys Survive Osborn Scare

Northeast Nodaway’s boys used a hot-shooting first half to build a big lead, panicked in the face of Osborn’s trapping defense and gave most of it away, but then made some critical plays at the end to preserve a 59-54 win over the Wildcats Friday.
Travis Peaslee scored the first two points of the game for Osborn, but then Kevin Stoll scored the next six points for Northeast, getting four free throws and attacking the basket at will. Osborn tried to rally, only for Steve Schulte to post a career night and hit three consecutive 3-pointers to keep Northeast in front at 15-10. He had been making the most of the time spent waiting for Osborn to get there for the girls game; he was shooting 3-pointers and even protecting his home court at one point. Steve hit his fourth and final 3-pointer at the start of the second to put Northeast up 20-10 with a defender in his face. Kevin Stoll and Jason Henggeler followed with putbacks to give Northeast its biggest lead at 24-10 at that point.
Ryan Graeff did all he could to keep Osborn in it, hitting five straight to cut it to 24-15, but Aaron Patton, who had been quiet, went coast to coast on a fast break and then added a drive down the right wing and Henggeler got a putback and 3-point play to make it 31-19 with 1:28 left in the second.
Graeff hit a 3-pointer for Osborn early in the second half, but Kevin Stoll got a putback and Aaron Patton got a steal and 3-point play to give Northeast its biggest lead of the night at 40-24 with 4:37 left in the second.
But then Osborn began extending their pressure and trapping all over the place and the change of tempo worked in their favor. Northeast got away from running their plays and started forcing passes.
Fueled by a couple of steals, Osborn came back to cut it to 41-32 before Aaron Patton’s 3-pointer from Tyler Schmitz restored order for the time beind at 44-32. The lead stayed between 9 and 12 until early in the fourth when Graeff’s 3-pointer fueled a run that cut it to 51-44 with 6:12 left. Osborn had a chance to make it five after a steal, but their layup attempt went in and out. But with Northeast continuing to panic against the pressure, Graeff hit consecutive 3-pointers to make it a one possession game at 54-52 with 3:50 left. Kevin Stoll’s free throws made it 56-52, but Northeast lost track of Derek Thompson underneath the basket and he was all alone for a layup to make it 56-54 with 2:55 left.
Once again Northeast threw it away as Stoll butterfingered a pass, but Dalton Welch stole it in the post. But then another panicked possession led to another bad pass which gave Osborn another chance to tie or take the lead. But they missed the shot and a putback try at point blank range went in and out. Northeast could not buy a board and Osborn got another chance, but this time they missed an NBA 3-pointer badly. Lane Allen drew a foul on a drive, but missed the one and one and Northeast finally got a board.
Northeast ran down the clock to 53 seconds as Osborn elected not to foul but to play for the turnover and the move paid off as Northeast threw the ball away for an over and back violation. But this time, Jason Henggeler stole a long pass that found only white shirts. This time, Osborn fouled Patton and he missed a one and one, but The General stole the ball right back as Osborn was bringing it up to set up a tying bucket and got a wide open layup to make it 58-54, a four point swing for Northeast right when they needed it.
This time, Osborn threw the ball away, but Dalton Welch missed both ends of a double bonus with 26 seconds left. Osborn missed a shot that went out of bounds off Dalton with 14.7 seconds left; they then tried to set up a drive by Lane Allen; he lost the ball but managed to save it to Derek Thompson right underneath the basket; however, he missed the point blank layup and the rebound was tipped around until Aaron Patton grabbed it and hit a free throw with 1.4 seconds left to secure the win.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Michelle Schulte Powers Bluejay Girls past Osborn

Michelle Schulte matched a season high with 18 points and powered Northeast past Osborn last Friday night in one of their last chances to make a statement before districts as Northeast won 39-26. Northeast fell behind by as much as seven behind ice cold shooting early in the game before coming back to take the lead at the break and then taking over in the second half.
There was some question about whether the game would be played as Osborn boys and girls coach Harry Elder had collapsed during the previous game and had to be taken to the hospital. But Elder, one of the more colorful coaches in the area and a perfect gentleman, was back as usual for Friday’s game, dressed impeccably in a suit and tie for battle.
Northeast shot 0 for their first seven as they fell behind 5-0 in the first 2:33 of the game before Claudia Wiederholt hit Michelle Schulte at the top of the key. Michelle followed with a steal to make it tied at 5-5, but then Kelly Ramey connected twice for Osborn and Courtney Nichols added a fast break off a bad shot to make it 11-5 with 2:29 left in the first. Michelle Schulte’s free throw with 0.3 seconds left in the period cut it to 11-8, but Nichols’ 3-point play powered the young Osborn squad, with only one senior on the squad, to a 16-9 lead with 6:45 left in the second.
But once again, the tiny but deadly version of the Schulte family turned the game around, this time by hitting a timely 3-pointer off a pass from Rachel Runde that broke the run. Michelle followed with another free throw and then Kerrigan Adwell hit Sarah Bliley on the left side and then Michelle hit Rachel Runde on the left side to put Northeast back in front 17-16 at the break as they started doing a much better job of working the ball around for a good shot instead of settling for the low percentage jump shot.
It was not Mr. Elder’s lucky week; the team bus broke down on the way over to Ravenwood and they had to borrow one of Jefferson’s busses to get the kids over for the game in time. Then, his team went into a 10-minute scoring drought as Northeast began to pull away.
Michelle Schulte started off the scoring with a drive and then Claudia Wiederholt hit Taryn Farnan inside. Rachel Runde got the ball for a fast break layup to Sarah Bliley and then Michelle got a tip and Claudia got the steal for a layup. To compound Mr. Elder’s bad luck this week, one of his players scored in the wrong basket to cap the Northeast run and leave them up 27-16 with 4:30 left. And that was not all.
Elder’s charges battled back; although Michelle Schulte was getting on the line for Northeast, the Wildkats got consecutive points to close the quarter to get within nine at 31-22. But then at the start of the fourth, Kelly Ramey, Osborn’s best shooter, fouled out. The problem was that an inexperienced official had called the wrong player for a foul in the third quarter – he had whistled Ramey for a foul, but it should have been called on Nichols, who had been guarding the ball and who was reaching in on the play. It was not the only time the officials had called the wrong player for a foul; against King City in the boys game, the officials called a foul on the wrong player for Worth County, which turned out to be critical.
The game turned into a brutal slugging match in the fourth quarter with both Taryn Farnan and Osborn’s Sarah McKay getting shaken up on a collision and Farnan getting a black eye; both were able to finish the game. Earlier, Kerrigan Adwell had gotten poked in the eye earlier in the third quarter. In the absence of their best shooter, Osborn battled gamely, but could only muster a drive from Nichols to make it 32-24 as they tried extending the pressure to get the ball back, but Northeast refused to fold.
Finally, Rachel Runde stepped back to the same sweet spot from where she nailed her NBA 3-pointer against CFX and hit what turned out to be the dagger with 3:45 left in the game. Michelle Schulte added a couple of free throws and Runde hit a pullup fast break with 1:24 left to give Northeast its biggest lead of the game at 39-24.
But after all was said and done in both games, Elder greeted it with a smile and a handshake and a warm hello as he always does, still with passion for the game after all these years.

A Main Issue for One Legislator -- Obama's Birth

With funding for our schools continuing to deteriorate and our lettered roads continuing to crumble, it’s nice that certain legislators have the right priorities in mind, such as whether or not Barack Obama is really the President of the US.
Seriously – this sort of grandstanding by Rep. Lyle Rowland is not appropriate at a time when our basic needs are not being adequately met. This has already been settled; the US Supreme Court (with a 5-4 conservative majority) refused to hear any such challenges to Obama’s citizenship with only one judge even remotely interested. It would not have been appropriate if it had involved John McCain and it would not be appropriate if it involved Ron Paul, Rick Santorum, or Newt.

Teacher Evaluation Bill by Brad Lager Comes Under Fire

A Republican legislator's plan for improving Missouri's teachers came under bipartisan attack Wednesday [Feb. 15] for being too vague and ineffective. The senator's bill would require each school district to create a system of evaluating teachers and its own standards for "instructional improvement."

Two senators from St. Louis County, Republican Jane Cunningham and Democrat Maria Chappelle-Nadal, said the legislation fails to establish a quantifiable standard for student performance. Cunningham said that without specifying what qualifies as "learning," a district could create lower standards than what the state requires.

Cunningham said the bill, sponsored by Rep. Brad Lager, R-Savannah, comes too late in an existing conversation. Chappelle-Nadal said schools in St. Louis County, where she serves on a school board, already have these practices.

Missouri's Senate approves restrictions in lawsuits by employees

The Missouri Senate approved along party lines on Thursday [Feb. 16] a measure that adds occupational diseases to the workers' compensation program.

Workers' compensation provides coverage for workers injured or killed on the job. Including occupational diseases in the program would protect employers from lawsuits because a worker receiving coverage is restricted from suing an employer for damages.

In 2005, the legislature excluded occupational diseases in a broad package of changes that scaled back workers' compensation coverage. After that, businesses began to complain the exclusion had led to an increase in lawsuits against employers.

In addition, the measure imposes restrictions on when an employee can sue a co-worker for injuries, limiting such a lawsuit to a deliberate and purposeful act.

The bill was approved Thursday [Feb. 16] on a party-line vote, with Democrats voting against the measure.

The Senate proposal heads to the House of Representatives, which is still holding committee hearings about its own workers' compensation legislation.

It is the second measure that has been pushed by a coalition of business organizations to clear the Senate this session. Earlier, the Senate approved legislation limiting when an employee can file a discrimination lawsuit against an employer.

A Moment with Mike -- Legislature Calls for Federal Balanced Budget Amendment

Session continues to gain momentum as more bills work their way out of committee and on to the House floor. Last week the Missouri House approved a resolution calling on Congress to adopt an amendment to the U.S. Constitution that would require a balanced federal budget. As we have watched our federal government continue to live beyond its means, it is obvious that something must be done to protect our nation from financial disaster. The budget recently proposed by our president would put national spending at approximately $3.7 trillion while our nation’s incoming revenues are only $2.9 trillion. That budget gap of approximately $765 billion is alarming but, sadly, nothing new for Washington, D.C. The path we are on will allow the portion of the national debt held by outside investors to climb to $18.7 trillion by 2021. That figure represents 76.5 percent of the overall economy – twice the size of the debt before the recession hit in 2007. This disastrous path our government is on is jeopardizing the future of our nation and our children. It is imperative that we send a strong message to Washington, D.C. indicating that it is time that they start balancing the federal budget like we balance our budget here in Missouri and like Missouri families must also do.
Another issue that brought about a lively debate was HB 1186 & 1147. This legislation would require all driving tests in Missouri to be given only in English. Presently, our state offers driver exams in 11 languages besides English and allows people taking the test to have a translator. This bill would prohibit the director of the Department of Revenue from supplying or permitting the use of language interpreters, except sign language interpreters, in connection with the required written and driving tests. Advocates argue that while we welcome people from all parts of the world and from varying cultures, it is important to establish that the language we use here in Missouri is English. Our road and highway signs are written in English and highway patrolmen and police officers who make traffic stops are going to communicate in English as well. The bottom line is that if you are going to safely operate a motor vehicle in Missouri, you need to understand English. By requiring applicants to take the test in English, we can ensure they know the language and improve the safety of our roads as a result.
Once again the state tax commission is recommending an increase in the assessed value of Missouri’s best farmland. This change is one that would cause Missouri farmers to pay an additional 29 cents per acre on the state’s most productive land. I believe that we can all agree that this is not the time to increase the tax burden on Missourians and the legislature will not support an increase. This would be especially detrimental to our farmers here in Northwest Missouri where a majority of the land would fit that category. There is a resolution on the move that would keep the proposed increase from going into effect that will come to the floor very soon. The Missouri General Assembly must act by March 4th to keep the increase from going into effect for tax years 2013 and 2014.
If you have questions, you may reach me at my Capitol number 573-751-9465, at the local district number, 660-582-4014, by email at mike.thomson@house.mo.gov or by mail at Room 401B State Capitol Building, Jefferson City, MO 65101.

Tiger Boys Solve Zone Woes; Down Pattonsburg

Worth County’s boys downed Pattonsburg 60-28 as they finally solved their zone woes for a day and beat the Panthers Thursday night.
Tyler Force cut inside for Pattonsburg’s lone lead before Travis Troutwine’s 3-pointer from Todd Harding put the Tigers back in front. Todd Harding would then score the next seven points to put the Tigers up by eight at 10-2. Travis Troutwine hit him on the left wing and then Jordan Harding and Andrew Mullock fed him in the high post; Harding then got loose in transition and turned it into a free throw.
Pattonsburg came back to cut it to five; Matt Huskey got loose in transition to start the run. Bryce Ross hit two free throws for Worth County, but Force got loose backdoor again for a free throw and then Joel Teel scored from inside early in the second to cut it to 12-7.
But then Worth County scored the next seven points to regain control. Todd Harding started it off again with an up and under move; Bryce Ross then hit him on the left wing. Todd then kept a possession alive by tipping it to Ross for a 3-point play to make it 19-7.
Teel answered for Pattonsburg, but then Bryce Ross got the hot hand, starting off a 6-0 run as he hit one with a hand in his face. Cole Parman got a steal off the press and converted it to two free throws and Ross scored another facial to make it 25-9. Force tried to carry the Panthers, scoring the next seven points for his team to close to within 28-16, but then Troutwine’s and Harding’s free throws left Worth County up 32-17 at the break.
Worth County pushed the margin into the 20’s early in the second half. Parman hit a 3-pointer from the left wing, Bryce Ross hit yet another shot with a hand in his face, and then added a skip pass from Cole Parman to make it 39-17 with 4:54 left.
Force and the Panthers tried to make a run, scoring the next five points, but Cole Parman got a 4th chance score as he converted it to two free throws as Worth County began working the offensive glass to put the game away. Andrew Mullock converted a 3rd chance putback and then Harding hit a free throw. Bryce Ross would then score the next 10 points for Worth County; he got a pair of putbacks, a play where Todd Harding aired it out to him and he flipped it into the hole, another facial shot off a pass from Mullock, and a step-thru shot between two defenders to make it 54-25 with 7:41 left in the game.
Force countered with a 3-pointer, but then Worth County triggered the running clock. Todd Harding got a putback and a steal and then Will Rennells got his first career points as a Tigers, getting a 3rd chance putback with 4:33 left.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Haven Schottel, Kristen Andrews Put Tiger Girls Back on Winning Track

Worth County’s girls got back on the winning track with a 50-33 win over Pattonsburg despite being short-handed for the game, playing without Liz Novak (hip flexor). But the Tigers got back on the winning track as this time, they did a much better job of stepping up in the absence of Novak as Haven Schottel (12 points) and Kristen Andrews (8 points) had career nights for the Tigers and several other players scored between 6 and 8 points for the night. It was such a good night for Schottel that she was scoring with her shoes untied at one point.
It didn’t look good for the Tigers at first as Megan Crone scored the first four points for Pattonsburg and Anna Morris cut inside as Worth County fell asleep at the switch as they trailed 6-0 just 1:34 into the game. On the other end, they were missing from the field as Worth County started out missing their first five shots. But unlike the Stanberry game and their other four losses, they responded a lot better after falling behind and did a much better job of attacking the rim and getting people in foul trouble.
Morgan Gardner was one of Pattonsburg’s two main post threats, but when she picked up her second foul at the 4:22 mark, that was when Worth County started climbing back in as Kristen hit two free throws to make it 6-4. Kristen then threw a backdoor pass to Claire Andrews to tie it up at six and Haven Schottel hit Kacey Smyser for a free throw to put Worth County up for the first time at 7-6 with 2:49 left.
Pattonsburg tried to regain control of the game by putting on the press, but Worth County did a good job of breaking it and Sydney Thummel came off the bench to break it easily and find Kacey Smyser for a layup to make it 9-7; Worth County raised it to 11-8 after one quarter as Kristen Andrews got a steal off the press and hit a shot at the buzzer.
Worth County did a much better job of putting pressure on the ball than they did against Stanberry as Haven Schottel had five steals for the night, followed by Rebecca Moore with four and two other players with three.
Haven Schottel and Rebecca Moore worked a perfect give and go to make it 13-8, but then Gardner came back in and made an immediate impact for Pattonsburg as she scored off a chicken salad basket and then got loose backdoor to make it 13-12 with 5:02 left. Worth County was struggling on the offensive end as they were trying for skip passes that were not there instead of making the easy pass; they were also dribbling the ball off their feet. The score was stuck at 13-12 for the next minute, but Kaitlyn Davidson finally broke the ice for Worth County with a putback high off the glass with 3:14 left that made it 15-12. Kaitlyn added another putback and then Claire Andrews drove down the right side of the baseline as Pattonsburg overextended on defense to make it 20-12 before Emily Dilley hit a free throw to make it 20-13 at the break.
Worth County did a much better job of getting to the offensive glass in the second half, which led to one of their most productive halves of the year and a season high in points scored. After a long scoring drought to start the second half, Claire Andrews hit Kristen Andrews at the top of the key and then Crone picked up her third foul shortly afterwards. Kristen then hit Haven on the right wing for her first two points of the night; Haven scored all of her points for the Tigers in the second half. That put the score into double digits at 24-13.
Carly Cornett beat the press to make it 24-15, but then Haven Schottel hit Kacey Smyser in the high post, Sydney Thummel followed with a steal, and then Katie Mullock inbounded it to Haven for a 3-pointer to make it 31-15 with 3:38 left.
Carly Cornett scored the next four for Pattonsburg, getting a putback and a half-chance lob pass, but then Haven got a steal off the press and then cut inside off an inbounds play following a five seconds call as Pattonsburg was having trouble getting it in against the press. Haven drew Crone’s fourth foul and hit one out of two and then Kacey Smyser tipped it to Claire.
Claire missed, but Kacey was there for the putback to make it 36-19 with 1:57 left in the third.
Kelly Warford, after having missed a ton, finally hit a 3-pointer with 45 seconds left and then Pattonsburg put back Morgan Gardner and Megan Crone into the game despite their foul trouble. They quickly worked the offensive boards and got the score back to within 11 at 38-27. The challenge for Worth County was to see how they would respond after such a run but they passed with flying colors as Haven Schottel hit a free throw off a drive and then Crone picked up her fifth foul shortly afterwards as she tried to make up for it after Kaitlyn Davidson had stripped her of the ball. Kaitlyn hit one free throw and then Haven scored again off a Kristen Andrews steal and then found Kristen in the high post to make it 44-27 with 4:13 left before both coaches started putting in their reserves.
Sydney Thummel and Claire Andrews cut inside for baskets and Sydney got loose on the weak side and stepped through a defender to round out the scoring for Worth County.

Are Your Soil Test Levels Dropping?

As you plan your fertilizer programs, be sure to notice trends in your soil test nutrient levels identified in your soil tests. We have been finding soil test values in some grower fields declining. Sometimes it is phosphorus. Other times we see potassium and many times, it is both nutrients.

Adequate amounts of these nutrients are critical for high crop yields. Other inputs will not maximize yields if either of these nutrients are limiting. If one of these nutrients are limiting, then adding additional inputs such as increasing the rate of nitrogen that you apply will have a not have the desired impact.

If you are using variable rate fertilizer applications and see areas of your fields showing symptoms of poor growth, you should consider moving your soil sampling points to sample these areas to insure that adequate amounts of nutrients are being applied. Between grid soil test points, there may be lower testing soil nutrient levels. By moving points, this will allow you to more accurately find what is in your fields.

Another approach to calculate the crop removal of your nutrients per bushels of yield harvested. If you are applying less amounts of nutrients that you are removing during harvest of grain, soil test levels will be declining. I believe this is happening with the high cost of fertilizer materials.

Also, forage crop yields should be considered. Growers who are selling or buying hay should consider the price of nutrients that are contained in the hay. You may be exporting nutrients off your farm or bringing nutrients onto the farm if you are purchasing hay.

For more information, contact Wayne Flanary at 660-446-3724 or Heather Benedict at 660-425-6434, Regional Agronomists, University of Missouri Extension.

Evening Pesticide Applicator Training Meeting Scheduled

Those individuals who produce agricultural commodities are invited to attend Private Pesticide Applicator training to be held Tuesday, February 28 at the Extension office located in the Courthouse Annex in Oregon. The meeting will start at 6:30PM.

These meeting are designed provide the training necessary for individuals seeking to obtain a Private Applicator Pesticide license to allow the purchase and application of restricted use pesticides.

Please contact the Holt County Extension office at 660-446-3724 to reserve a seat.

University of Missouri Extension does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, religion, age, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, or martial or family status in employment or in any program or activity.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Worth County Emergency Management Ordinance

BE IT ORDERED (ORDAINED) by the County of Worth that
Section 1.
There is hereby created within and for the territory of the County of Worth an emergency management organization to be known as the Worth County Emergency Management Agency, which is responsible for the preparation and implementation of emergency functions required to prevent, minimize and repair injury and damage due to disasters, to include emergency management of resources and administration of such economic controls as may be needed to provide for the welfare of the people, and emergency activities (excluding functions for which military forces are primarily responsible) in accordance with Chapter 44, Revised Statutes of Missouri, 44.080, and supplements thereto, and the Missouri Emergency Operations Plan adopted thereunder.
Section 2.
This agency shall consist of a Director and other members appointed by the Presiding Commissioner to conform to the State organization and procedures for the conduct of emergency operations as outlined in the Missouri Emergency Operation Plan.
Section 3.
The organization shall perform emergency management functions within the territorial limits of Worth County and may conduct these functions outside the territorial limits as directed by the Governor during the time of emergency pursuant to the provisions of Chapter 44, Revised Statutes of Missouri, 44.080, and supplements thereto.
Section 4.
(1) (Director) The Director will be appointed by the Presiding Commissioner and shall serve during the pleasure of the Presiding Commissioner.
(2) The Director shall have direct responsibility for the organization, administration and operations of local emergency management activities.
(3) The Director shall be responsible for maintaining records and accounting for the use and disposal of all items of equipment placed under the jurisdiction of the Emergency Management Agency.
Section 5.
The Presiding Commissioner of Worth County and the Director, in accordance with Chapter 44, Revised Statutes of Missouri, 44.080, and supplements thereto, may:
(1) Appropriate and expend funds, make contracts, obtain and distribute equipment, materials, and supplies for emergency management purposes; provide for the health and safety of persons, including emergency assistance to victims of natural and manmade disasters, or national emergency; the safety of property; and direct and coordinate the development of disaster plans and programs in accordance with policies and plans of the federal and state emergency management agencies;
(2) In the event of a national emergency or severe local emergency endangering public health, welfare, life or public property, waive the normal purchasing/supply requisition procedures, upon approval of the Presiding Commissioner and in accordance with state statutes and any local emergency procurement procedures formally adopted by Worth County.
(3) Appoint, provide, or remove rescue teams, auxiliary fire and police personnel and other emergency operations teams, units or personnel who may serve without compensation;
(4) With the approval of the Governor and consistent with the Missouri Emergency Operations Plan, enter into mutual aide agreements with other public and private agencies within and without the State for reciprocal emergency aid;
(5) Accept donated goods/services to benefit disaster victims, and services, materials, equipment, supplies or funds granted or loaned by the federal government for disaster mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery purposes.
Section 6. (Oath) No person shall be employed or associated in any capacity in any organization established under this act who advocates or has advocated a change by force or violence in the constitutional form of the government of the United States or in this State or the overthrow of any government in the United States by force or violence, or has been convicted of or is under indictment or information charging any subversive act against the United States. Each person who is appointed to serve in an organization shall, before entering upon his duties, take an oath in writing, before a person authorized to administer oaths in this state which oath shall be substantially as follows:
“I,____________________________, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of Missouri, against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties upon which I am about to enter. And I do further swear (or affirm) that I do not advocate, nor am I a member of any political party or organization that advocates the overthrow of the government of the United States or of this State by force or violence; and that during such a time as I am a member of the Worth County Emergency Management Agency, I will not advocate nor become a member of any political party or organization that advocates the overthrow of the government of the United States or of this State by force or violence.”
Section 7. (Office Space) The Presiding Commissioner is authorized to designate space in any County owned or leased building for the Worth County Emergency Management Office.
Section 8.
This Order (Ordinance) shall be in force from and after its passage and approval, as provided by law, and replaces the August 15, 1988 Ordinance any other preceding order (Ordinance) for Worth County for Emergency Management.
Whereas , pursuant to 192.300 RSMo., a county commission may make and promulgate orders, ordinances, rules and regulations, respectively as will tend to enhance the public Emergency Management. The Worth County Commission hereby adopts and desires as follows: The Worth County Emergency Management Ordinance was then adopted by a roll vote. Commissioner Rob Ruckman, aye. Commissioner Dennis Gabbert, aye. Presiding Commissioner Findley aye.
A copy of the Ordinance is on file, and can be viewed by the public in the County Clerk’s Office 11 W 4th Grant City, MO.

McCaskill: Eliminate waste in Lifeline program

As part of an ongoing effort to stop waste in a government-run cell phone program, U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill is requesting detailed information on the program’s contracts.

In a letter to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), McCaskill, Chairman of the Senate Subcommittee on Contracting Oversight, wrote that the proper management and oversight of contracts related to the Lifeline program may provide additional opportunities to eliminate waste, fraud and abuse. In order to better assist the Subcommittee in their efforts, McCaskill asked the FCC to provide the Subcommittee with documents related to the agreement between the FCC and the companies responsible for managing Lifeline and the number, value and scope of contracts.

McCaskill urged the FCC late last year to provide stronger oversight of the little-scrutinized federal program after she received a solicitation at her home for a free cell phone from the Lifeline program. The mailer did not require documentation for proof of eligibility. McCaskill is, in fact, not eligible for the program.

Following those demands, last month the FCC issued new orders to eliminate waste, fraud, and abuse in the program.

The Lifeline program is funded by the Universal Service Fund (USF), which receives its resources from a fee telephone users pay on their phone bills. The FCC oversees the USF and, accordingly, the Lifeline program.

Read a full copy of McCaskill’s letter at the Subcommittee on Contracting Oversight’s website, HERE.

Rep. Delus Johnson Introduces Missouri Jobs for Education Act

Legislation introduced by state Rep. Delus Johnson, R- St. Joseph, would encourage job creation by providing employers with tuition credits for any Missouri public institution of higher learning. The Missouri Jobs for Education Act (HB 1728) would deposit the withholding tax for a newly-created job into the Missouri Jobs for Education Fund. Businesses could then claim the credit for their employees or family members, or they could gift the credit as a scholarship. Johnson said the goal of the bill is to both spark job creation and to help more Missourians achieve the goal of obtaining a college degree.

“My hope is the bill will give an additional incentive for job creation while also providing the financial assistance that will encourage more and more Missourians to attend a university, college or technical school,” said Johnson. “As we try to pull our state out of this sluggish economy, it is critical that we create good-paying jobs for our citizens and that we find ways to make our citizens educated and capable as a workforce. My bill is one piece of the puzzle that will help us to do that.”

In order to qualify for the credit, Johnson’s bill would require employers to create jobs that pay wages that meet or exceed the county average. The jobs would have to be maintained for at least one year before the employer is eligible to redeem the credit. Johnson said his bill would allow an employer to redeem a credit equal to the amount withheld for employment tax. He said for a job paying the average Missouri salary of $41,050, the amount of the credit would be $1,477. An employer creating ten jobs at the average wage could redeem a credit of $14,770 after one year. The tuition credit could never exceed the amount contributed by the employer.

Johnson’s bill now awaits assignment to committee for further discussion.

Improving Life with Parkinson's

Dr. Angela Ridgel, an assistant professor of exercise science/physiology at Kent State University, is leading two new research projects to help individuals with Parkinson’s disease improve cognitive and motor function. Ridgel has been studying Parkinson’s disease for five years, and the two new research projects are bringing her closer to developing exercise therapy that can delay the progression of Parkinson’s and lower Parkinson’s medications dosages.

“Parkinson’s is a progressive disease, and over time, individuals are required to take more and more medication – sometimes with negative side effects – in order to manage symptoms such as decreased motor and cognitive function,” Ridgel said. “The goal is to develop widely applicable exercise therapy to delay the progression of symptoms and reduce the need for medication.

“Nearly 1.5 million Americans have Parkinson’s disease, and the longer people live, the more likely they are to develop progressive neurological disorders. I believe, and my research is proving, that we can use exercise therapy to promote improvements in the way the nervous system works and improve the lives of these individuals.”

Research Study #1: The Parkinson’s Disease Cognitive Intervention

Ridgel, with support from Kent State’s Dr. John Gunstad, associate professor of psychology, and Dr. Ellen Glickman, professor of exercise physiology, is currently studying the impact of upper- and lower-extremity exercise on cognition, motor function and cerebral blood flow, as well as cardiovascular fitness and muscle strength in individuals with Parkinson’s disease. The goal is to add additional exercise therapy besides cycling for Parkinson’s patients. Ridgel’s past research has proven cycling improves motor and cognitive function.

Initial findings presented at the Society for Neuroscience Meeting in November 2011 reveal that individuals with Parkinson’s experience improvements in cognitive function, mobility and oxygen saturation in the brain after participating in the program’s comprehensive exercise intervention. This exercise protocol developed by Kent State researchers can improve fitness, motor and cognitive function in a short, eight-week period.

Additionally, through extensive psychological evaluations measuring memory, attention, problem-solving and language, the researchers are examining which underlying brain responses and neurological functions are associated with cognitive improvements. These findings may lead to additional methods for Parkinson’s rehabilitation, according to Gunstad.

“With a greater understanding of how exercise impacts neurological function, we can gauge which areas of the brain are key to repairing cognitive function,” Gunstad said. “This could eventually lead us to look for methods of brain stimulation that may produce the same cognitive benefits for Parkinson’s.”

Ridgel will present the results of the study at the American College of Sports Medicine conference in May 2012.

Research Study #2: Smart Bike

“While the work we are doing with exercise therapy has been successful, there is quite a bit of variability in the data,” Ridgel said. “Individuals with Parkinson’s each have different symptoms and capabilities, making it challenging to develop a single, applicable rehabilitation program ideal for all patients.

“Our goal is to build a ‘smart bike’ that would allow us to create a database of symptoms and responses. Using this database, we could then design a cycling program tailored to an individual’s unique capabilities and challenges.”

On Jan. 7, 2012, Ridgel received a two-year, $390,000 grant from the National Institutes of Health to develop the smart bike in collaboration with Dr. Kenneth Loparo of Case Western Reserve University and Dr. Fred Discenzo of Rockwell Automation.

Starting in June 2012, she will use the “smart bike” to assess individual effort, performance, skill level and therapeutic value. The ultimate goal is to devise a computer-driven system that alters resistance, speed and time to benefit each individual. Using an established baseline, the bike will output a customized exercise program to benefit individuals with Parkinson’s. If successful, the team can apply for a second grant to develop a solution for widespread use in therapist and doctor’s offices.

Northwest Cell GM Testifies Before US Congress, Sam Graves

Today, Roger Bundridge, General Manager of NorthwestCell and a member of RCA’s Board of Directors, testified before the House Small Business Subcommittee on Healthcare and Technology hearing entitled, “Broadband: A Catalyst for Small Business Growth.” Bundridge discussed the need for competitive carriers like NorthwestCell to receive sufficient and predictable support through the new universal service mechanisms to maintain, upgrade and expand their networks to support consumers and other small businesses. Bundridge also expressed the importance of access to useable spectrum, availability of devices and roaming on commercially reasonable rates to compete with the largest carriers and expand mobile broadband, especially in rural areas.

“Wireless carriers like us play a critical role by providing service to rural and otherwise underserved areas and acting as a competitive balance to the largest carriers,” Bundridge said. “For us to remain competitive in an increasingly consolidated industry, and to continue to expand service to difficult-to-serve areas, Congress must support policies that level the playing field and allow smaller carriers to grow."

In a statement, RCA president & CEO Steven K. Berry said, “I thank Roger for his testimony, as many other RCA members share the same challenges as NorthwestCell. Policymakers’ decisions will likely determine the livelihood of many competitive carriers, especially smaller carriers, and it is critical that Congress and the FCC consider the impact on the small businesses and consumers they serve. Access to sufficient and predictable universal service support, access to useable spectrum, roaming on commercially reasonable rates, and the availability of cutting-edge, interoperable devices are critical issues for competitive carriers across the country. We look forward to our continued work with Congress and the FCC to ensure decisions on these issues benefit consumers and small businesses across the country.”

Opinion: The Problem With Too Many Debates

By Lee H. Hamilton

What role should debates have in political campaigning? That’s the question being raised by this Republican presidential primary season.

Some prominent Republicans are worried that the nonstop series of GOP debates has done their party more harm than good by showcasing all the differences among the candidates. But others disagree precisely because the debates have given the candidates a chance to air their opinions. “I think they’ve been the most important primary debates in our history. Certainly the most important I’ve ever covered,” CNN’s Wolf Blitzer said on the night of the Florida primary.

The debates’ impact on the campaign is interesting, but they raise a larger issue that shouldn’t get lost in presidential horse-race coverage. It has to do with how the average voter gets to know a candidate, whether for the presidency or for a seat in Congress — and what we ought to know about a candidate before we make up our minds. Can we devise a political campaign in this country that allows us to get beyond the debates’ one-liners, superficial answers and stage-managed images, to an in-depth, wide-open discussion with opportunity for extensive follow-up?

There’s no question that debates have some value. Structured properly, they make a candidate put forth his or her ideas, give us a glimpse of how they behave under pressure, and allow us to get a sense of what the candidates — and sometimes the party as a whole — believe the campaign is about. If there’s a series of debates, they also allow us to become familiar with the candidates’ personalities and style.

But there can be too much of a good thing. Preparing for many debates cuts hugely into the time a candidate spends with actual voters (rather than the media who control the debates), listening to their concerns, taking the temperature of the electorate, deepening the campaign’s message and building its organization and outreach. It’s important for candidates to get to know the electorate in the work place, at diners, in places of worship, at service-club meetings and shopping malls and even political rallies. Debates move the candidate toward the television screen and in some important ways away from the voter.

More fundamentally, it’s worth asking to what extent debates give voters the information they need to make discriminating choices. You want a politician to be able to think on her feet and to be articulate, of course; agility with both words and ideas is a valuable political skill. But in public officials we want more than a good debater. Debates tend to harden candidates’ positions, rewarding indignation and forcefully stated convictions. They show us nothing of a candidate’s ability to work toward common ground with people who disagree — which is, of course, the essence of governing. And debates steer candidates away from in-depth exploration of complex issues — witness, for instance, the almost total lack of foreign-policy discussion in the series of GOP presidential debates.

There are ways to handle some of these shortcomings, of course. Debates could benefit from avoiding the one-minute-statement, 30-second-rebuttal format, and instead allow for true discussion in a format that would allow voters to see how the candidates address major issues in reasonable juxtaposition with one another. After all, that’s what elected officials have to be able to do — so why not let the electorate see them at it before they get elected?

There are many important qualities that debates do not test: the ability to build consensus, to work with people of differing opinions and backgrounds, to make sound judgments about what’s best for the country, to sort through complex issues and arrive at proposals that move the nation forward. These are qualities that voters can gauge only by seeing candidates in action on the stump, by hearing them explain in depth how they would approach our big challenges, and by watching them as they encounter people from all walks of life.

Televised debates are a part of the modern campaign. They seem to be popular with voters and are undoubtedly good theater. But we should not mistake them for the best way to get information to the discriminating voter.

Lee Hamilton is Director of the Center on Congress at Indiana University. He was a member of the U.S. House of Representatives for 34 years.

Worth County Farmer's Market Proposed

Calling all community members, gardeners and farmers!! We will be having an organizational meeting for “County Market Day!” on Thursday, March 1 at 6:00 pm at the Fairgrounds Building. The Market would be a farmers market and handcraft fair held on a regular basis. Tammy Ueligger, Worth County Economic Developer will facilitate the meeting to discuss and bring together those interested in starting a “market.” Any interested vendors or a producer should plan to attend. A vendor can be an individual farmer or a local artist or a non-profit group such as a 4-H clubs or FFA members. A free canvas AgriMissouri Tote Bag will be given to the first twelve vendors to register by calling Tammy at (660)254-3592. Even beginners are welcome; mentoring is available through Missouri Master Gardeners.
Often, gardeners and farmers have wished to have a market for their excess produce or thought that selling produce might mean extra money for the family budget. Ideally, the market would have fresh seasonal fruit, vegetables and possibly fresh cut flowers. Additionally, there could be home baked breads and pies or jams and jellies. In the handcrafted arena, the possibilities could include hand crafted quilts, soaps, candles and any other handcrafted items.
Hargrave Family Farms will offer honey and in the early spring, plan to have bee hives for sale for anyone interested in beekeeping as a hobby.
The market could have a mobile aspect, allowing it to be relocated to other events throughout the County. This could increase attendance for those events and, in turn, help with sales for the vendors. Imagine, dropping by and picking up some summer squash to grill and the ingredients to make a fresh salad. Dinner would practically make itself.
Creating this market is the essence of economic development~ people need to eat ~ why not buy wholesome foods grown by your friends and neighbors? This will encourage our local economy to grow by purchasing locally grown food as well as offer and opportunity for local growers to earn some money. Another aspect of shopping locally is the added benefit of eating well for health and taste. Local fresh fruits and vegetables taste better and are fresher.
Tell your neighbors and friends! This will be a great opportunity to 'get growin for Worth County'. Hope to see you there. REMEMBER -- Thursday, March 1st at 6:00 pm at the Fairgrounds Building in Grant City. FREE AgriMissouri tote bag for the first 12 to pre register by calling Tammy Ueligger at 660-254-3592.