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Local News Archives for 2019-01

10 People Homeless After Overnight Fire


A structure fire in a two-story, multi-family dwelling at 405 S. Elm has left ten people homeless. The Coffeyville Fire Department responded just after midnight to the four-apartment structure, and upon arrival, heavy flames were visible. Fire crews began extinguishing the fire while a search was conducted upstairs for possible victims. All four apartments were occupied, and all occupants had escaped. Off duty fire personnel, and the South Coffeyville Fire Department were called to assist. The fire took 45 minutes to bring under control as cold temperatures hampered firefighting efforts. There were no injuries reported. Damage to the structure, owned by Dan Leoffler, is estimated to be $85,000. No cause of the fire has been determined at this time, and the fire is under investigation by the Coffeyville Police and Fire Departments.


The Red Cross was called to assist with the four families displaced following the fire.

Not To Late To Attend Farmers Market Course



K-State Extension offices have been previewing their Farmers Market Course held at the Parsons Area Research & Extension Station and now agent Jacob Weber says it’s finally here this weekend. Weber says this course is for any and all farmers market goers. A course discussing regulations on eggs, meat & poultry at the market. Agent Jacob Weber states pre registration has passed but that shouldn't stop you from coming. Weber says they will also be giving our certification on Morel Mushroom Identification. Even if you know what you are looking for Weber states this will give you a certification to safely collect, and sell Morel Mushrooms at the market. The course will start at 9 AM and will go until about 3 in the afternoon. Pre-registration has already passed though Weber states you can still show up at the door for registration at 8:30. He says they will have room for you, just may not have a meal that was provided in the pre-registration process.

Transportation Task Force Update



As we find ourselves a couple weeks into the new session, Representative Rich Proehl says his committee the Transportation Task Force is moving in the right direction towards new legislation to fund the road projects around our state. Currently in the process of passing a few bills to build the policy and funding for statewide repairs. Representative Rich Proehl explains if funded the committee would look to complete the T Works Project here in our region as he goes over the 10 year plan. He says their first priority is to complete the T Works Project as he says they hope to have those done in the next 4 to 5 years. Then the committee will begin to lobby other major repairs that are needed in our region. Proehl says it’s his mission to keep the T Works a top priority to keep the trust of the taxpayer and the legislature.

Improved Sound For ICC'S Inge Theater



The sound inside the William Inge Theater at Independence Community College should be improving soon. A grant from the Kansas Creative Arts Industries Commission (KCAIC) and funds donated by the ICC Foundation  will go toward the purchase of professional-level acoustic shells.  The grant was for $5,000.  The foundation supplied matching funds to cover the $10,600 cost of the six shells.  The shells create a portable wall structure specially designed to direct sound from the stage toward the audience.  The shells are expected to be delivered to the college in mid-February.


Foundation Director Mandy Monroy says the gift is an ideal opportunity to support a project that mutually benefits the college and community.

Reminder From KDOT & KHP: Buckle Up


The Kansas Department of Transportation and Kansas Highway Patrol urge drivers and passengers to use seatbelts. Within the past two weeks, over a four day period, six crashes left seven people dead.  None of the people killed were wearing seatbelts.  KHP and K-DOT remind drivers that it takes seconds to buckle up. They say that time can make a difference in surviving a wreck or not. 


The Kansas Department of Transportation offers statistics that indicate in 2017 seatbelt compliance was at the highest rate over a several year span.  The public information office says as safety constraint usage increases, the number of deaths decreases.  













NCSO Arrests Sheriff's Deputy


The Nowata County Sheriff's office makes it's second arrest of one of their own. Deputy Robert Jacob Popp was arrested for embezzlement by a public official. While paying the monthly fuel bill for the NCSO, irregularities were discovered indicating possible misuse of one of the fuel cards, which had been issued to one of the deputies. Upon serving the warrant, the sheriff's office recovered evidence supporting the investigation, along with discovering methamphetamine at the scene.


In a Facebook post Sheriff Terry Barnett says there is no place in law enforcement for favoritism and it will absolutely not be found at the NCSO. She says she will continue to do her best to ensure the Nowata County Sherriff’s Office is a professional, effective, ethical and respected member of the law enforcement community and one the citizens of Nowata County can take pride in.

Civil War Reenactment at Brown Mansion



A Civil War reenactment comes to Coffeyville! Put on by the Historical Society over at The Brown Mansion March 2nd and 3rd. A member of the reenactment group and organizer Rob Burrows explains they will have the camps open from 10-5 both days with plenty of things to see, as well as many different groups coming from all over to be a part of the shows. A free event for everyone to enjoy, featuring blacksmiths, broom makers and of course the reenactments, though Kris Crane with the Historical Society says they will also have some Native Dancers out of Sapulpa Oklahoma. A Free and informative event for everyone in the family to take part in. Again, on March 2nd and 3rd with the grounds being open nearly all day, though the reenactments times will be at 11AM and 2:30 on Saturday. Then on Sunday at 10 AM & 1:30 out at the Brown Mansion.

KDOT Approves Bids for Two SE Kansas Highway Projects

Southeast Kansas has a couple of highway projects that have had bids approved for the work.  The Kansas Department of Transportation has approved a bid for milling and overlay work on Highway 169 north from the Highways 169-166 junction to the Labette County line.  The for the 5 and a half miles of work was let to Cornejo & Sons of Wichita for just over $2.2 million.


KDOT also accepted a bid of just over $38,000 for bridge work on a bridge on K-39 almost 2 miles east of the Highway 169-K-39 junction.  The bid has been awarded to B & B Bridge Company of St. Paul.

Dr. Correll Appointed to State Education Council


USD 445 Superintendent to represent Coffeyville and the school district in Topeka. Dr. Craig Correll has been appointed to Governor Laura Kelly's Education Task Force. This is an advisory group to improve education in Kansas. Correll says he is extremely honored to be appointed to Governor Kelly's Education Council. The council is made up of statewide business, industry and organizational leaders. He says he is thrilled at the opportunity to work with them to improve education in the state. The community of Coffeyville should be proud the state has recognized the emphasis it has places on the children of USD 445.


Being represented in Topeka is good for the entire community.

Happy Birthday Kansas


Kansas turns 158-years-old today. January 29th marks the date in 1861 when Kansas joined the union as a free state.  It was, at times, a bloody start to statehood.  Kansans persevered. The state motto: ad astra per aspera translated from Latin means to the stars through difficulties.  Today, Kansas will be recognized with a number of activities at the Kansas Museum of History.  


The museum, located in Topeka, will be have a slate of special events until 3 pm. There is no charge for admission. 


Kansas Historical Society 



Whooping Cough Diagnosis at USD 436


A case of whooping cough has been diagnosed in a staff member of USD 436 Lincoln Elementary. Superintendent Blake Vargas in a letter to parents says that the staff member was current on all their vaccinations and they are taking every precaution necessary. Whooping cough, also known as pertussis is an infection that infects the airways and can spread easily from person to person by coughing or sneezing. It can cause severe cough that lasts for weeks or months, sometimes leading to intense coughing spells and/or vomiting. Anyone can get pertussis, and can be dangerous for babies and adults with weakened immune systems. Vargas says are in contact with Montgomery County Heath Department and are taking precautions to limit further exposure.


A copy of the letter sent to parents can be found on the USD 436 Facebook page.

ICC Strategic Planning Needs Volunteers


Independence Community College has moved to the next phase in its strategic planning process in which work groups will create initiatives in specific areas. Volunteers are needed to work in those groups. The work groups and their focus areas have been created by the Strategic Planning Gap Analysis Committee. The Gap Analysis Committee is chaired by community member and Strategic Planning Coordinator Mike Thompson. The work groups created are: Academic Excellence, Public Relations, Economic Development, Cultural and Diversity Excellence, and ICC 2025, which focuses on financial sustainability, funding and development of distinctive programs. The work groups will complete the majority of their tasks in February.


Those interested in serving should e-mail Beverly Harris, clerk of the board of trustees, at, or call Harris at 620-332-5451.

IPD Ups Patrol at Schools


Beginning February 25 thru March 8, the Independence Police Department will join other law enforcement agencies in Kansas, Missouri and Oklahoma with increased enforcement near high schools to raise awareness on roadway safety. Crashes are the leading cause of death for teens (15-18 years old) in the United States. “Even one teen death is unacceptable,” Chief Harrison said. “Please slow down, put the phone away or turn it off, and always buckle up.” Officers will issue citations to any individual who refuses to obey the traffic laws, whether it is for speeding, texting or failing to buckle up.


Remind teens that driving is a privilege and encourage them to learn about the importance of driving safely.

Fire Under Investigation


An investigation continues into a Friday afternoon fire in Coffeyville.  The Coffeyville Fire Department, off-duty firefighters, and the South Coffeyville Fire Department all responded to the blaze in an unoccupied home in the 1100 block of West 14th Street. Crews were able to get the flames under control in 10 minutes. The fire was contained to one room in the house owned by Diana Carter.   


No injuries were reported.  





Capitol Hill Questioning Changes To Liver Transplant Policy



U.S. Senator Jerry Moran of Kansas joins with other senators seeking answers about recent changes to the national liver distribution policy implemented by the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network.  The Manhattan Republican joins with a bipartisan group of 21 Senators over concerns that areas in rural and low-income areas may have reduced access to locally donated livers which could lengthen wait times for those whose lives depend on receiving a transplant. The senators note that, by failing to account for regional variations in liver donation rates and disparities in the performance of organ procurement organizations, the OPTN’s policy change appears to reward locations that underutilize existing organ resources and have historically had troubled OPOs. 


Moran is especially concerned about the impact the changes could have on Kansas City-area hospitals that offer liver transplants.  Senator Pat Roberts was also among those signing the letter.  



The full text of the letter can be found here.






Coffeyville's Reawakening Efforts

Efforts at revitalizing Coffeyville have moved into a higher gear this week as Coffeyville's Reawakening group has undertaken a flurry of activity.  Throughout the week the group has been meeting with city and business leaders, the Montgomery County Action Council and Midland Theater Board, as well as downtown property owners.  Coffeyville City Commissioners will meet tonight to discuss the efforts, although no specific action is expected during the meeting.


Earlier today the group began video taping sessions for a “Legacy and Legends” series designed to highlight Coffeyville’s history and legacy.               

Stay Strong, Stay Healthy Coffeyville



An evidence based strength training program returns to Coffeyville! Geared towards older generations as the K-State extension offices are happy to bring back the Stay Strong Stay Healthy event at the Coffeyville American Red Cross. Agent Barbara Ames explains some of the things you may experience as she says you will start with the basics, making sure you move and exercise correctly, not injuring yourself. You’ll use weights and other techniques all while tracking your performance as Ames says everyone always walks out surprised in their physical improvement. Ames says you will meet twice a week starting March the 4th through April the 24th at the American Red Cross in Coffeyville, at 128 W 8th street on Mondays and Wednesday. Registration is required which  includes a 20 dollar fee. Ames says to register or for more information to call your area research and extension office.

Deadline Looms To Serve On Parks Board



The Coffeyville Board of Commission will accept applications from those  interested in serving on the Park Advisory Board until 5 pm on February 6th.    Appointments will be made during the February 12th Coffeyville City Commission meeting.  Applicants must attend the meeting to be considered.  Three seats are open on the five member board.  Meetings are held on the first Monday of the month at 4 pm.  The terms are for four years, serving through January 1, 2023. You must be a resident of the city to apply.  


Applications are available in the Coffeyville City Clerk’s Office, 102 W. 7th. You may also apply on-line through the City of Coffeyville website.

KANOKLA Coyote Challenge Returns This Weekend


The 8th Annual KANOKLA Coyote Challenge takes place this weekend after being rescheduled from earlier in the month. The challenge is a coyote hunt benefiting the Caney Fire Department.  Hunters may register beginning at 5:30 Friday evening at the Antique Tractor Club off US 75 north of Caney.  The entry fee is $200 per team, for up to three hunters. The pot has a 70% payout.  Hunting hours are from sunrise to sunset on Saturday. Check-in will be at 7:30 Saturday evening at the tractor club. 


Preregistraion is possible by calling MaryAnn at 620-870-0999 or Robert at 918-440-4438 (after 3 pm).  




Hogsett Receives Independence Chamber Award

Independence City Commissioner, Gary Hogsett received the Independence Chamber of Commerce Wanda Mayo Award at last night’s Annual Meeting and Banquet.  About 300 Independence and area business people attended the banquet at Memorial Hall.  Outgoing Chairman of the Board, Matt Sutherland spoke to the gathering about this past year while the incoming Chairman, Chris Moore took a look at the coming year.


Parsons will be holding their Annual Chamber Banquet this coming Saturday while Coffeyville’s is coming up next Thursday evening.

2x2 Valentines Day



Attention couples and Valentine's Day lovers. Eclectix Art Gallery in Independence will be having a fun event coming up on Saturday February 2nd starting at 2 PM. Director of the Gallery Tamisha Sewell explains the 2X2 Valentines Day Event. Where individuals or couples can go and purchase a wide variety of 2x2 paintings for 5 dollars and even purchase an Easel for an additional 1 dollar. Paintings featuring Valentines Day themes, constellations, sunflowers and much more you can also purchase gift certificates from the shop, which are also good for credit towards their courses they carry. For more information on the 2x2 Valentines Day event or for their courses Sewell says head to their Facebook page under the events tab. She says everyone is always welcome to the shop located at 311 N. Penn in Independence and encourages you attend the 2x2 Valentines Day event on the 2nd of February.

CPD Adds A New Officer


There’s a new face on the thin blue line in Coffeyville. Officer Emily Relph was sworn into service and received her badge at this week’s Coffeyville City Commission meeting. Emily’s mother, Sue Relph, had the honor of pinning the badge on her daughter.  


The commission also also presented service awards to 13 employees. In total, they have a combined 190 years of service. 

Two Dead in Labette County Crash

Two people are dead as the result of a two vehicle accident Monday on Highway 400 near Parsons.  Killed were 21 year old Joli S. Huto of Mound Valley and 62 year old Charles J. Wass of Parsons.  According to Highway Patrol reports the accident occurred 2 miles east of Parsons when for an unknown reason Hutto’s vehicle which was traveling west on Highway 400 crossed the centerline and struck Wass’s east bound pick up head on.

Potential for Winter Weather in Afternoon and Evening


The National Weather Service has updated the forecast from last night as the system has slowed down and will now be producing some winter weather across Central Kansas. The front should push through Southeastern Kansas this afternoon with rain and drizzle along with strong north winds at 25 to 40 mph. Late afternoon wind chills will be in the 20's. The NWS is having a hard time determining how far the freezing drizzle and snow will make it and will be expanding the advisories this afternoon as the storm slowly moves through Kansas. They believe much of the precipitation will fall as rain through the early evening but there is a chance for it to switch to freezing drizzle and it won't take much to make our roads slippery and dangerous this evening. The time frame for our area will be after 1 p.m. probably in the 2-3 p.m. time frame through early evening.


Temperatures for tomorrow will stay cool with another front on Thursday and Saturday keeping us in the cold.

C.C.C. Weekend of Champions



Mark your calendars Coffeyville and C.C.C. alumni! Many know the annual fall time induction into the Community College Hall of Fame, though Yvonne Hull with C.C.C. explains they’ve got another one planned for Saturday February 2nd on campus in the Student Union. Yvonne Hull explains its another induction for some of the past greats through CCC. Many Championship teams, coaches and others will be inducted as Hull explains to register to email or call Jana Kastler at 620-252-7360 or at The cost is 15 dollars per person or 25 for a couple, and reservations are due buy this Friday January 25th. The event will take place on Saturday February 25th on the C.C.C. campus in the Student Union starting at 2PM.

The Kansas Crime Victims Compensation Board



The Kansas Crime Victims Compensation Board recently awarded just over 225,000 dollars to the victims of violent crimes in their January meeting. Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt explains the staggering amount of cases they see annually. The Board recently awarded 274 victims just over 225,000 dollars to those in need after violent crimes, in their January meeting. Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt explains this program is one he especially likes. Schmidt explains one of the best parts, is no tax dollars go into compensating these victims. The program is funded by a portion of the court costs and fines, inmate wages, parole fees and restitution paid by convicted offenders. Schmidt says unfortunately they see about 2 to 300 cases for this program per month though is glad something like this is in place.

Red Ravens Win; Head Coach Jay Herkelman Wins 622


In part 2 of the double header against Allen County Community College, it wasn’t just any game the Red Ravens men’s basketball team. This was a potential record-breaking win for their great head coach Jay Herkelman to pass Francis Flax from Brown Mackie, to be the winningest head coach in Region 6 history. Herkelman is already the holder of the most wins in school history at Coffeyville, the top win holder in the Jayhawk Conference, and looked to get to 622 wins to pass Flax last night.


In what was an explosive display of offense, the Red Ravens did not disappoint in this battle. Hosting an Allen County team who is right in the middle of the Eastern standings at 4-4 and 12 and 5 on the year overall. The Red Devils are known to score with their ability to drive the basketball, but Coffeyville’s offense was just too much. Shooting 66% from the floor, 64% from behind the arc and got 16 points off the bench in the first half. The first half was led the way by Marvin Johnson with 18 points, Tevin Brewer with 15 points, and Keon Queen with 10 who also had 9 rebounds in the first half flirting with a double-double. At the half C.C.C had a very comfortable lead 63 to 34, but still had work to do to get their coach this win. The second half started rather slow paced, both teams struggling to score though Coffeyville’s lead made it easy for them to get back into a grove again. An exciting 2nd half was another offensive display with Alley Oops, Big Dunks and getting players off the bench involved, this became a very easy win in the end for Coffeyville as they beat Allen County 105 to 71. Johnson finished with 28 points, 7 assists and 3 rebounds, while Keon Queen finished with his double-double at 13 points and 11 rebounds. Coffeyville finishes at 58% from the floor and 55% from three as they notch the big number 622 for head coach Jay Herkelman.


After the victory, the school had a ceremony gifting Jay Herkelamn with a plaque, that signifies him as the NJCAA Region 6 winningest head coach off all time. In an emotional speech coach Herk says, “This team, this town. It means a lot to me, and there is much more to come, especially with this group of guys.” A 24-year career that started at C.C.C back in 1995 has gotten Jay Herkelman this well-deserved plaque passing Francis Flax with now 622 wins, which took Flax his entire 23-year career to get. Herkelman is well on his way to 694 which would put him in the top 25 winningest head coaches in the entire NJCAA, though with his speech last night. Coach is more focused on bringing a national championship to Coffeyville.


C.C.C. travels to Independence on Wednesday for a Montgomery County Showdown with a tough Pirates team with a later tip off around 8 PM. We will cover this game on your home the Red Ravens FM 98.1 KUSN, pre-game starting after the ladies’ game. You can find their full re-cap VS. Allen County under the sports tab here on

Woman Killed In Apparent Pursuit Crash


An Oklahoma woman dies in a  Montgomery County wreck while being pursued by Chautauqua County Sheriff’s deputes.  The Kansas Highway Patrol reports 29-year-old Carla D. Tewell, of Broken Arrow, was eastbound on U-S 166 across the overpass over U-S 75, north of Caney when she failed to negotiate a curve, went through a guardrail, down an embankment. Tewell’s car rolled four times before coming to rest in a field. 


The KHP report indicates the crash happened around 4 pm yesterday (Friday).  

IPD Fundraisers for K9 Program


The Independence Police Department is holding a best beard contest to help raise money for their K9 program. Police Chief Jerry Harrison says you can vote for the best beard by donating at a number of businesses in Independence.


Chief Harrison says he really appreciates all the support from the local businesses and the community.  He says you can also go into Kirk Wright State Farm and they'll donate $10 for every auto or fire qoute.  

M.L.K Community Celebration



Many of us will be enjoying a long weekend in the remembrance of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day. The Independence Chamber of commerce's Kathy Shepard explains they are hosting a celebration in the name Dr. King coming up on Sunday starting with a free soup luncheon. A free program for everyone starting at 2PM with a free soup luncheon, a program will follow at 3PM featuring music, games, and speakers honoring Dr. King, as well as crowning the winner of the Food Fight which was a community food drive between the students and citizens of Independence. Shepard says they will also award a citizen with the Spirit of Unity award. For an individual who is committed to service around the community. Shepard says the event is free of charge and encourages everyone to come check out the speakers, presentations and music that will be in the program. Taking place in the Independence High School Performing Arts Center with the lunch at 2 and the event right after at 3PM.

Chiefs Fans Ready For Big Game


Sunday’s forecast for Arrowhead looks like another frigid day for football fans. Temperatures will stay below freezing as the Kansas City Chiefs host the New England Patriots in the NFL’s AFC Championship.  Kick-off is set for 5:40 Sunday evening and the Chiefs Kingdom will be out in full-force. Parking passes can be purchased in advance from the Chiefs for $50. Gameday passes at the toll gates will cost $60. AAA-Kansas advises for fans staying overnight, accommodations could be difficult to get. Many hotels are booked and others have limited availability. With the threat of winter weather affecting roads, AAA-Kansas also recommends that drivers pack a winter emergency kit to keep in their vehicles. The kit should include items such as a fully charged cell phone, cell phone charger, snow brush, de-icer, shovel, kitty litter or other material for traction, bright triangle or reflector, first aid kit, flash light, jumper cables, tool kit, blankets and warm clothing, drinking water and snacks.


For those looking to avoid some of those issues, you can listen to the game on The Mighty 690 KGGF. There will be pre-game coverage ahead of the 5:40 pm kick-off. 

Winter Blast On Its Way


The temperatures prepare to tumble below freezing tomorrow.  The forecast calls for lows in the 20s through much of next week.  That means some additional precautions will be needed.  While most people have already made the milk, bread, and toilet paper run, don’t forget to check on your neighbors who may need assistance as the bone-chilling temps set in.  Also, if you have pets you should bring them inside if possible.  If not, make sure they have extra food and water and a warmer place to shelter.  AAA-Kansas also reminds residents to make the effort to prevent frozen or burst pipes which can result not only in discomfort, but also in expensive repairs.  


The insurance division of AAA offers some tips.  


Preventing Frozen Pipes:


  • Make sure everyone in your family knows where the water shut-off valve is and how it works.
  • Insulate pipes in your home's crawl spaces and attic, even if you live in an area where freezing temperatures are unlikely.
  • Seal gaps around pipes that allow cold air inside. You also should look for air leaks around electrical wiring, clothes dryer vents and pipes. Use caulk or insulation to keep the cold out.
  • Disconnect garden hoses. If possible, use an indoor valve to shut off and drain water from pipes leading to outside faucets. This reduces the chance that pipes inside the house will freeze.
  • If a freeze is expected, consider allowing warm water to drip slightly overnight, preferably from a faucet on an outside wall. Even a slight trickle may keep your pipes from freezing.
  • When there is the possibility of a freeze, don’t turn down the thermostat at bedtime. Instead, maintain the same setting day and night. Drops in temperature, which are more common overnight, could freeze your pipes.
  • Open cabinet doors. This will allow heat to reach uninsulated pipes located under sinks.
  • AAA Travel agents report that this is a busy time for travelers looking for good deals or trips to warmer places. If you’re going on vacation or leaving your home for an extended period of time, consider maintaining minimal heat to prevent freezing.


Recovering from Frozen Pipes:


  • If you turn on your faucets and nothing comes out, your pipes are likely frozen. Don’t wait for them to burst. Take measures to thaw them immediately, or call a plumber for assistance.
  • You may be able to use a hair dryer to thaw a frozen pipe. Begin by warming the section of pipe closest to the faucet, then work your way out toward the coldest part of the pipe.
  • Never use a hair dryer or any electrical appliances in areas of standing water. You could be electrocuted.
  • Never try to thaw a pipe with a torch or other open flame. It could cause a fire.
  • If your water pipes have already burst, turn off the water at the main shutoff valve in the house, leave the water faucets turned on, and call a plumber.
  • Mop up spills. You do not want the water to do more damage than it already has.
  • Call your insurance company claims department as soon as you can. An insurance adjuster does not need to see the spill before you take action. However, the adjuster will want to inspect any damaged items.
  • Make temporary repairs and take other steps to protect your property from further damage. Remove any carpet or furniture that can be further damaged from seepage.


One Dies In Wreck North Of Caney


A deadly accident yesterday evening north of Caney.  The Kansas Highway Patrol reports the wreck, involving a farm tractor and a pickup truck, happened around 6 o’clock.  Investigators say 67-year-old Kenneth Sullivan of Havana was driving the westbound tractor when he was rear-ended by 78-year-old Ronald Rogers of Cedar Vale.  Sullivan died from his injuries.  Rogers was transported to the hospital with serious injuries. 


The accident was on U-S 166, near the interchange with Highway 75.  


Kansas Congressman Elected to House Ways and Means Committee

Kansas Congressman Ron Estes was elected today by the House Republican Steering Committee to serve on the House Committee on Ways and Means. Rep. Estes will be the only Member of Congress from Kansas to serve on the committee in the 116th Congress.


The influential Committee on Ways and Means is the oldest committee in the US Congress and is responsible for writing tax policy and has jurisdiction over trade, Social Security and health care.


Ron Estes represents Kansas’ 4th congressional district in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Independence Man Killed in Single Vehicle Accident

An Independence man is dead following a single vehicle accident yesterday on 10th Street Road just south of Independence.  74 year old Steven Tate was pronounced dead at the scene after the accident was discovered by a Montgomery County Sheriff’s Deputy shortly before 2pm.  The cause of the accident is unknown at this time and is under investigation.


A Deputy noticed a vehicle off the road on 10th Street just south of 58 Road that had struck a tree.  The deputy discovered a single occupant trapped in the wreckage. And quickly dispatched Independence EMS and Independence Rural Fire Department.  Once EMS arrived it was determined the occupant had not survived the impact. 

U.S.D. 445 Athletics & Activities Mission



Youth participation! That's a huge goal for Activities & Athletics director of USD 445 Zach Johnson as he aims to get kids exposed to the language and similar drills to what they’ll see at the next level at grades K through 6. Johnson explained more improvements they look to make this semester saying that they hope to improve their community involvement as well, getting parents involved making the experience more special and possible with booster clubs. Whether its theater,forensics, or the core sports they are hoping to get more kids involved through the district. Johnson is a firm believer in the connection of extra curricular activities with better attendance and test scores in the classroom and hopes to expose more kids to all they have to offer around USD 445.

Entrepreneurship Workshop Begins Soon At FABLAB


Individuals considering starting their own businesses, already in business or just looking for new approaches to problem-solving are invited to enroll in the next “Entrepreneurial Mindset” class at Fab Lab ICC. The weekly class will run January 23 through April 10 and will meet each Wednesday from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.  Course homework involves viewing an average of one hour of video content weekly and reading a weekly chapter in “Who Owns the Ice House?” featuring the story of successful entrepreneur Clifton Taulbert. Class sessions will include discussion of the video content and visits from area entrepreneurs. The course is open to adults of all ages and is offered for college credit for traditional and as a non-creditcourse for non-traditional students. Facilitator Jim Correll explained the class revolves around eight life lessons: Choice, opportunity, action, knowledge, wealth, brand, community and persistence.  


 Registration is available online at


Noted Pianist To Perform At Pitt State



The 2018-2019 Season of the Pittsburg State University Solo and Chamber Music Series continues with a performance by renowned pianist Behzod Abduraivmov.  The concert will be at 7:30 pm on Friday in the Sharon Kay Dean Recital Hall in McCray Hall at the corner of E. Lindburg and S. Locust. Recent seasons have seen Abduraimov work with leading orchestras worldwide including the Los Angeles Philharmonic and London Symphony Orchestra.  


Full-time PSU students may receive a free ticket. Tickets for the general public may be purchased at the PSU Ticket Office Room 137 of the Garfield Weede Building. or at the door prior to the performance.  




New USS Wichita Joins Fleet


Kansas Congressman Ron Estes takes time to honor the commissioning of the USS Wichita on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives.  The USS Wichita, the U.S. Navy’s newest Freedom-class Littoral Combat Ship, was commissioned over the weekend in Mayport, Florida. Estes says as

the third USS Wichita in U.S. Naval history, the ship will carry on a proud legacy of representing Kansas’ largest city around the globe.

The 387-foot-long ship can travel at speeds up to 40  knots and support near-shore or open-ocean missions.

Inauguration Day In Kansas


Today is the day.  Governor Jeff Colyer prepares to hand the keys to the Governor’s Office over to Governor-elect Laura Kelly The Topeka Democrat becomes the 48th Governor of Kansas.  She and Lynn Rogers, who will serve as Lt Governor, will take their oaths of office at 11 am on the south lawn of the statehouse.  The Inaugural Ball will be held this evening at the Kansas ExpoCentre.  Premium tables for the event were $10,000.  Kelly and her husband, Dr. Ted Daughety, spent part of last week moving into Cedar Crest. 


Meanwhile in Oklahoma, Republican Kevin Stitt is set to become Oklahoma’s 28th Governor.  The Tulsa businessman will be sworn into office at 11:30 on the south side of the Oklahoma Capitol.  Republican Matt Pinnell will serve as Lt. Governor.  

Kansas AG Makes Appointments to Staff


Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt names new appointments to his senior leadership staff in the attorney general’s office. C.J. Grover has joined the office as public information officer. Jennifer Montgomery, who previously served as public information officer, will transition to a new role as public affairs director. John Milburn will serve as executive officer, assisting in the operations of the office. Denise Coatney will serve as Schmidt’s executive assistant and scheduler. Karla Werth has joined the office as director of administrative operations, where she will also oversee Schmidt’s constituent services.


Schmidt will be sworn in for his third term as attorney general on January 14, when he will become the second-longest serving attorney general in Kansas history.


Thompson to Replace Carroll as ICC Strategic Planning Cordinator


Independence Community College has appointed Mike Thompson to the volunteer position of Strategic Planning Coordinator. Thompson replaces Brooke Carroll, who moved from the Independence area to take employment in Wichita. In his role as ICC Strategic Planning Coordinator, Thompson will work collaboratively with several committees, including the Strategic Planning Process Committee, which is responsible for outlining the steps of the process, and the Strategic Planning Gap Analysis Committee, which will prioritize issues for deeper study by other work groups.


Originally from Independence and an Independence Community College alumnus, Thompson comes to the role with a 44-year career in the financial services industry.

Pawhuska Weed Bust Might Be Legal Hemp


Legal hemp and not illegal marijuana. According to the News on 6 attorneys are working to clear the names of four men arrested in Pawhuska for transporting what police believed to be thousands of pounds of marijuana. The attorneys for the four men arrested say this has all been a big mistake and they say with any luck, their clients won't spend another night in jail. Attorney Matt Lyons says his two clients were the drivers of a mini-van which was escorting the semi-truck law enforcement believed to be hauling 18,000 pounds of marijuana.


Lyons says their company, Patriot Shield, specializes in the legal transportation of hemp.




*photo and story courtesy of News On 6*

E.L.C. Accepting Applications Year Round



Calling all parents! Principal of the Early Learning Center Amanda Cavaness states that the E.L.C. takes applications everyday of the year. Kids from birth to 5 are accepted, as it's a great place to learn developmental skills as well as being surrounded by people who care for your kids while your at work or away. Cavaness says for parents that are interested, the registration process needs to be done at the ELC and can be made easier by bringing certain documents. Such as birth certificate, copy of insurance, work schedule and a full list of immunization as well as a physical exam. Cavaness says any kid from birth to 5 years old is welcome as they make it their mission to create a loving and accepting environment all while teaching them great developmental and social skills. For more information or questions she says to call 620-251-1147.


Sneak Peek At Upcoming Legislative Session


Members of the Kansas House Of Representatives and Kansas Senate prepare to open the session at 2 o’clock Monday afternoon.  Meanwhile, the 2019 Legislator Briefing Book has been distributed to members.  The briefing contains many of the topics lawmakers will be asked to consider.  Some of the topics include school safety and security, industrial hemp, the Kansas Water Plan Fund, legalization of medical and recreational marijuana, the opioid crisis and a number of corrections issues.  See the complete book here


The 48th Governor of Kansas Laura Kelly and Lt. Governor Lynn Rogers will take their oaths of office at 11 am Monday on the south lawn of the Kansas Capitol.  The Inaugural Ball will open at 6 pm at the Kansas Expocentre.  



Abandoned Structure Fire in Independence


Around 3:00 this afternoon Independence Police Officers noticed a structure on fire in the 300 block of North 9th Street. Officers called the fire in and the fire department got the fire put out. The structure was an abandoned house and Police Chief Jerry Harrison says it is under investigation to determine if it was arson or accidental.


During the incident a school bus who was trying to get around traffic knocked over a power line causing Highway 75 to be closed for about an hour.

K-State Extension Farmers Market Course



As we dive through winter time, many of us are actually preparing for growing season. Speaking with K-state extension agent Jacob Weber, he says they are bringing back their Farmers Market Course coming up the first weekend in February.


Weber says the course will include discussions on regulations, sales tax, as well as learning to make a profit. Whether your new to the scene or Weber even states that veterans would benefit from the course. Taking place at the Southeast area Research station on February 2nd from 9AM to 3PM in Parsons Kansas.


Registrations can be done by going to ** or by calling 620-331-2690.


IPD Investigates Scam


An investigation by the Independence Police Department into a scam leads to an arrest. On December 16th Independence Police were dispatched to the 100 block of North Penn. An alert sales associate suspected a customer was attempting to make a large purchase under someone else’s name. After making contact with the suspect an investigation begin. The investigation revealed the suspect was calling the company’s customers posing as customer service. The suspect was able to obtain social security numbers, PIN’s, and other personal information. He was using this information to access customers’ accounts.


The man arrested was identified by Florida driver’s license as Nigel Duckett Thompkins-Wilson of Dallas, Texas. Thompkins was arrested for identity theft, identity fraud, felony attempted theft by deception, making false information, and forgery.

Three Arrested In Columbus Raid


Columbus Police and the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office serve a search warrant Tuesday evening and three land in Jail. The warrant was served at a home on East Metzler in Columbus. Sheriff David Groves says, during the search, investigators found what appeared to be methamphetamine, marijuana and drug paraphernalia. Deputies arrested 37-year-old Harley Schmohe and 63-year-old Shirley Morris of Columbus. Also arrested was 42-year-old Shelly Ledbetter of Springdale, Arkansas. Schmohe and Ledbetter are both being held in the Cherokee County Jail in lieu of $5000.00 each on allegations of Possessing Methamphetamine, Marijuana and Drug Paraphernalia. Morris’ bond has been set at $2,000.00 on allegations of Possessing Marijuana and Drug Paraphernalia.


The arrests come after a several weeks-long investigation.

24,000 Pounds of Pot Allegedly Found in Pawhuska



An early morning traffic stop by Pawhuska police led to a search of semi-truck allegedly hauling up to 24,000 pounds of suspected marijuana.

The weed has landed four men in police custody.

Osage County Sheriff Eddie Virden said two officers pulled over a semi-truck just before 3:00 a.m. because it didn’t stop at the four-way stop south of the Pawhuska city limits.

Upon approaching the 18-wheeler, the two officers reported smelling the odor of marijuana. Osage County Sheriff Eddie Virden confirmed the report and adds that the four men were passing through town.

Virden also says they are waiting to execute a search warrant and things have been turned over to the Drug Enforcement Administration.

We’ll have more updates on this story as it becomes available.



Courtesy of Ty Loftis - Bartlesville Radio


UPDATE: Missing Sedan Woman Located


The Sedan Police Department asks for help from the public in locating a missing woman. They say Brandi Tinsley (Waller) left Sedan on December 29th with David Gilliland of Bartlesville.  The two were expected to return on January 6th, but have yet to show up. Investigators say they were last heard from on January 4th while in the Sedona, AZ area.  


Anyone who has information on their whereabouts is asked to contact Sedan Police at 620-725-3108





The individuals in this case were last seen yesterday. They were described as not being in distress and were safe at that time. This case is being downgraded as the Sedan Police Department continues to assist family members in making contact with their loved one, but at this time, they are no longer considered missing.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Community Celebration



With a new year comes many great new things to our towns and many great events throughout the year. We spoke with Director of the Independence Chamber of Commerce Lisa Wilson on the best way of keeping up with their events, as she says Facebook is the best outlet. She did wants to remind our listeners of an event coming up on January 20th. A day she says they will honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at the I.H.S. Performing Arts Center starting with a free soup luncheon at 2PM followed by the program at 3PM.  Featuring entertainment for everyone as Wilson says there will be music, presentations and speakers all honoring Dr. King and what he stood for. For more information or for a full schedule of events Wilson says to check out there Facebook page Get Independence as they are experiencing troubles with their website.


Job Fair Set In Independence


The 2019 KANSASWORKS Statewide Job Fair will include Independence.  There are 10 other communities throughout the state that will be taking part.  Employers must be recruiting for open positions or ones that will be open within the next six months.  There are no educational requirements for those attending, but registration is necessary and must be completed by February 22. 


The job fair will be at Independence Memorial Hall on Thursday March 7th from 2 pm - 6 pm.  


Register here



Coffeyville Community College Marketing Initiative



Tomorrow marks the date for when C.C.C. students return to class for the next semester. School is back! C.C.C’s Yvonne Hull tells us over the last couple months they have tried harder to showcase all of what the college offers for students. As many people might be surprised on how many there truly is. She mentioned a new, marketing initiative to showcase the many course people may not have been aware of. As many of what they provide give a student great practice for university life. Hull says CCC has a mission to make it feel more like a university setting by providing a more diverse set of courses. Giving the student a better experience and training for the next level and potentially will attract more students to spend time here in our great town of Coffeyville. Hull says she is surprised on how many individuals, even living here in Coffeyville, do not know all that they provide. She says the next showcase will take place sometime in February as she hopes these events will help people know what the courses they have and potentially attract more students in the future.

Some Of The Cheapest Gas In Kansas



Gas prices continue to drop across Kansas. AAA- Kansas reports some of the least expensive gas in the nation is in our state. At $1.93/gallon, the statewide average gas price is now 31 cents lower than the national average and ninth cheapest in America. Kansas’ average gas price, which has fallen  for about the past three months, is now 15 percent lower than this time last year.


Two Kansas metro areas are among the Top 50 cheapest gas prices in America this week. Wichita, at $1.85/gallon, checked in with the 34th lowest gas prices among larger metro areas. Kansas City, Kan. ($1.88) is 44th lowest.


This week’s Kansas gas price extremes:


HIGH: Elkhart (Morton County) – $2.50

LOW: Galena (Cherokee County) – $1.72













Trout Fishing Coming to LeClere Park


The City of Coffeyville is partnering with the Kansas Fish & Game to stock trout in the lake at LeClere Park. The trout will be placed in the lake on January 10, and trout season runs through April 15. Fishing licenses and trout permits are required to fish and are available wherever licenses are sold. In Coffeyville, fishing licenses and permits can be purchased at Walmart, and they are also available on the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism website.   The daily limit for trout is five with a total possession limit of 15.


Additional information about fishing at LeClere Lake is available on the City of Coffeyville website.

Long Serving Senator Plans To Retire


US Senator Pat Roberts announces he will not seek re-election to the U.S. Senate in 2020. The Kansas Republican will retire at the end of this term and the 116th Congress. He made the announcement today (Friday) in Manhattan, near Kansas State University, his alma mater, and the National Bio and Agro-defense Facility (NBAF).


The 82-year-old Roberts was first elected to the Senate in 1996. Previously, he served in the US House from 1981- 1997.

Super Bowl Chili Feed!


Super Bowl Chili Feed Fundraiser!


The Coffeyville Friends of Animals says Happy New Years to all of our listeners and a huge thanks to all the support they received through 2018. Coming up for Super Sunday Becky Barnhardt tells everyone a great way to support the shelter, while feeding those hungry football fans. Feed those football fans! Businesses around town will hold tickets you can purchase that are worth one quart of chili for Superbowl Sunday all while supporting the shelter with the proceeds. Barnhardt says one ticket cost 7 dollars and is worth 1 quart of chili or you can bundle and get 3 for 20. The businesses around town providing tickets are Community State Bank, The Coffeyville Chamber, Liebert Bros, Bluboots, United Methodist Church and of course you can purchase at the shelter.  Barnhardt wanted to again give thanks to all the support they received at the shelter all through 2018, and hoped everyone had a great holiday. For more information on the Annual Super Bowl Chili Feed you can contact Stacia Stewart who is in charge of the arrangements at 620-249-9298.


Kansas Students to Receive Loan Forgiveness


More than 1,000 Kansas students will receive $2.1 million in student loan forgiveness. Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt says this is made possible under the terms of a settlement reached with Career Education Corporation. CEC is a for-profit education company based in Illinois, currently offering primarily online courses through American InterContinental University and Colorado Technical University. CEC has closed or phased out many of its schools over the past 10 years. A total of 1,077 Kansans are eligible for student loan debt relief for a total amount of $2,142,116.


CEC agrees to forgo any and all efforts to collect amounts owed by former students living in the states participating in the agreement.

Caney Boil Advisory Lifted


According to the Caney Police Department the Kansas Department of Health and Environment has lifted the boil water advisory in the City of Caney.

K-State Extension Upcoming Courses



We previewed it and now it fast approaches. The K-State Extension Office area Soybean School returns to Parsons Kansas. Held in the Southeast Area Extension & Research Station starting at 3 PM. The event is free of charge as they are still taking registrations.The phone number to call is 620-724-8233 as they are still taking reservations making sure there is enough food provided. Extension agent Jeri Geren says this is a very informative class, no matter what part of the soybean industry you may lie in. The event will host many speakers covering all areas of Soybeans including production, soil fertility, insect prevention and of course the Soybean Markets. Held in the Southeast Area Extension & Research Station starting at 3 PM off of Ness Road in Parsons Kansas.


Extension agent Jacob Weber says they are still taking reservations for the free event, as well as registrations to their annual Farmers Market Course coming up early February. This workshop will be in our area on Saturday February 2nd from 9AM till 3 in the afternoon. Just like the Soybean School this course will take place in The Southeast Area Extension & Research Station off of Ness Road in Parsons Kansas and is 20 dollars per person.



Fatality Crash Near Talala


A crash near Talala, Oklahoma is under investigation. The Oklahoma Highway Patrol says a South Coffeyville woman was killed in an SUV and semi truck crash yesterday on Highway 169. Troopers say 60-year-old Karon Allison who was driving a 2011 Ford Expedition, was northbound when for some unknown reason, she crossed the center line and struck a southbound semi just before 1:30pm. OHP Lt. Ron Hamilton says it’s a 65 mile per hour speed zone and it appears both vehicles were doing that when it impacted.


The driver of the semi 30 year old Travis Meads of Linn Valley, Kansas was not injured.

US 75 Highway Work in Montgomery County Approved by KDOT


Highway 75 north of Caney will be getting a rehab.  The Kansas Department of Transportation has approved a bid for milling and overlay for about 20.5 miles of Highway 75 north of Caney to just west of Independence.  The bid for nearly $3.3 million has been awarded to a Hutchinson company. 


No word yet on when that project will begin.

NYE Sees No Highway Deaths in Kansas


Good job Kansas.  A review by KGGF News of the Kansas Highway Patrol traffic reports indicates there were no fatality accidents recorded over New Year’s Eve.  


Meanwhile in Oklahoma, OHP worked one fatality wreck early this morning where impairment is suspected.  It happened near Altus around 1:30 am.  Two people were killed in that crash. 


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