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Local News Archives for 2023-12

Bella Vista Man Arrested After Bombs Found In Home


 A Bella Vista, Arkansas man has been arrested after police find six homemade pipe bombs in his home.

 52-year-old Lawrence Hickman was arrested last week on six counts of criminal possession of explosive materials or a destructive device.

 Court documents say the bombs were found when law enforcement officers came to his Bella Vista home to question him about a harassment complaint. The pipe bombs were X-rayed and found to be live.

 Court documents also said that Hickman wanted to relocate to the Philippines, where he said his new wife lived, and planned to start the journey by kayaking through the Bering Sea. Investigators were told that the pipe bombs were for defense against sharks and pirates.

 Hickman was arrested at a pier in Washington state. He had two inflatable kayaks with him.

 He is being held at the Benton County Jail on $1 million bond.

City of Afton Searching For Office Manager & Treasurer


 The Afton, Oklahoma, Board of Trustees voted to terminate their office manager and treasurer of the board.

 In an executive session, and by a 3 to 2 vote, Rebecca Collins’ employment with the community was terminated, in what officials say is for the “good of service” for the position.

 Collins was questioned by some members of the community for what they call questionable bookkeeping practices. Collins says the problems come from a lack of organization.

 An investigation by the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation took place before the Christmas holiday. City offices were shut down December 21st, and are set to reopen today. No items were seized; no arrests have been made and no charges have been filed.

 The investigation is ongoing.

Renovations Taking Shape in Ottawa County Jail


 A complete plumbing renovation is taking shape in the Ottawa County, Oklahoma jail.

 Jail officials say renovations include the replacement of all plumbing, installation of new cold and hot water lines, and the replacement of the boiler with tank-less water heaters.

 Before the renovation, the jail's boiler was replaced every two years, which caused water shutdowns for several days at a time. The facility used bottled water and a trailer with a water tank was on hand to ensure enough water for essential needs.

 As of Wednesday, hot water is in the facility, with the installation of tank-less heaters scheduled for next week. Other projects include installation of sinks, toilets, and showers.

 Funding for the new water lines and tank-less heaters comes from a grant provided by the Miami Tribe.

Bartlesville Man Arrested After Smoking Fentanyl in Casey's


 A Bartlesville man was in Washington County Court this week on charges of no valid driver’s license, DUI of drugs, unlawful possession of paraphernalia, and carrying drugs into jail.

 Court documents say 21-year old Sonny Gragg was arrested December 23. He was allegedly smoking some sort of drug at the Casey’s on Nowata Road, which led to police being called. When an officer arrived, Gragg was followed home, where standard field sobriety tests were given that led to his arrest. He was also found with a broken pipe and half of a blue pill identified as fentanyl.

 Gragg was given an aggregate bond of $32,500; his next court date is set for January 5th.

Emergency Personnel Training at Caney High


Caney emergency personnel will be conducting training with USD 436 at Caney Junior High and High School.


The school will be blocked off for anyone not participating in the training. This will include Bullpup Boulevard, the intersections of Bullpup, Vine and Bradley and all school parking lots.


The training is on Tuesday, January 2nd from 8:00am to Noon. Several emergency vehicles will take part in the training, which could also include loud bursts of sounds.

City Offices Closing for End of Year


Area municipal offices are closing for the end of the year.


City halls in Fredonia and Cherryvale will be closed today to complete financial year-end processing. Sedan City hall will also be closed today through Monday.


Coffeyville and Parsons city offices will be closed on Monday for the New Year's holiday. All area offices will reopen on Tuesday, January 2nd.


Coffeyville Tag Office Reopens Soon


The reopening of the Coffeyville Tag Office is almost here.


According to County Treasurer Nancy Clubine, the tag office will reopen on Tuesday now that new staff have been hired and trained. The hours for both the Independence and Coffeyville offices will be 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Anyone needing title work should arrive before 3 p.m.


K-State Continues Research to Benefit the Agriculture and the State


Kansas State University continues to spend time researching topics important to Kansas and agriculture producers.


K-State Research and Extension Director of Research Jane Schuh says collaboration across the university is at an all-time high and it's only going to get better.


Schuh says there's research that she's especially interested in for 2024.  Schuh says there's plenty of research and work that has or will be taking place at the university to benefit agriculture and its people. 

KHP Christmas Weekend Activity Report


 The Kansas Highway Patrol releases its Christmas Holiday Weekend Activity Report.


The reporting period ran from 6:00pm Friday, December 22nd through 11:59pm on Christmas. KHP personnel assisted 449 motorists over the reporting period. This includes working two non-DUI-related fatality crashes that had two fatalities.


The KHP had seven DUI arrests, which is down nine from 2022 and eight from 2021. This is also the third straight year there were no DUI-related crashes. 

Only a Few Spots Left for Robots and Drones


Spots are filling up quickly for the Innovation Youth Labs Robots and Drones class next month. Coffeyville Reawakening's Denise York says there are only four spots left on each day.


The sessions are free to attend and lunch will be provided. The deadline to register is Friday, January 5th, anyone who registers after the 5th or after the classes fill up will be notified if space becomes available. A link to register can also be found here.

Carthage, MO Man Arrested After 40-Mile Pursuit


 A Carthage, Missouri man has been arrested after an almost 40 mile police pursuit.

 20-year-old Michael Elliot has been charged with drunk driving, after Jasper County deputies say they attempted to pull Elliot over for traffic violations in south Carthage early Tuesday morning. Officials say speeds of up to 110 miles per hour were reached during the pursuit.

 He’s charged with DWI, driving while revoked, speeding, resisting arrest by fleeing, and creating a substantial risk of injury/death. Elliot is being held on a $10,000 cash-only bond.

Joplin Police Gives Update on Christmas Eve Incident


 The Joplin Police Department releases the name of the man involved in an incident Christmas Eve in Joplin.

 The deceased individual has been identified as 58-year-old James Fischer, of Joplin.

 Christmas Eve, just before 4:30 p.m., Joplin Police received a call concerning a person in distress in the 1600 block of East Vandalia Street in Joplin. The individual, who expressed self-harming intentions, requested police assistance. Upon arrival, officers found Fischer in the front yard of the specified address. A confrontation led to shots exchanged. Fischer sustained gunshot injuries, was transported to Mercy Hospital, and was later pronounced deceased.

 JPD officials confirm that two officers discharged their weapons during the incident; no officers sustained injuries.

 The officers have been placed on paid administrative leave; the Missouri State Highway Patrol will conduct the investigation. An autopsy has been scheduled for today.

Bartlesville Water Restrictions Lifted


 Rainfall over the holiday weekend has restored Hulah Lake levels, moving the Bartlesville area out of water restriction stages.

 Bartlesville Water Utilities Director Terry Lauritsen says Hulah Lake levels increased two and a half feet because of the recent rains, and is currently one foot above the top of water conservation. Lauritsen says water is now in the flood control portion of the lake.

 Weighted water supply based on water right is 113.9 percent and is still climbing, which is the highest level city officials have seen in a year and a half. Becuase of the rain, there are no water restriction stages in Bartlesville.

 Copan Lake levels, however, have not changed as much. Copan Lake increased only 0.1 feet, with overall water remaining at 67.7 percent.

Washington County Commissioners Approve Courthouse Renovations


 Washington County Commissioners approve a bid for additional renovation work on the first floor of the county courthouse.

 Commissioner Mike Dunlap explains what will be done.

 Washington County commissioners will meet again at 9:00 a.m. Tuesday on the second floor of the Washington County Administration Building, 400 South Johnstone Avenue in downtown Bartlesville.

Chelsea Police Chief Removed From Office


 The Chelsea, Oklahoma Chief of Police is removed from office.

 The removal took place during a town hall meeting Tuesday night. Now former Police Chief Shawn McKibbin has been arrested and is being accused of committing fraud and computer crimes.

 Detectives believe that McKibbin used fake bank accounts to show that he had more than $400,000 in his account when attempting to purchase a house with cash. Records show that he never had more than $6,000 in his account during that time.

 Larry Copeland, the only board member who voted against the removal of McKibbin, told News on 6 that the Chelsea Police Department is short handed and McKibbin was doing all he could to get more people on the force.

 Kristen Sutherland has been appointed as Interim Chief.

Bartlesville Man Charged with Second DUI


 A Bartlesville man was back in Washington County Court yesterday afternoon on charges of larceny, DUI, and driving with license suspended/revoked.

 Jamal Jones was arrested December 22nd after he was pulled over for traveling 70-mph in a 55-mph zone. Jones would fail multiple field sobriety tests, and was arrested and placed in the Washington County Jail.

 Jones was out on bail on a larceny charge from November, and it was later discovered that he was already a convicted felon and had previous DUI and driving with license suspended/revoked charges.

 Jones' bond was set at $25,000; his next court date is set for January 24th.

Fredonia City Hall Closing This Week


City Hall in Fredonia will be closed later this week.


City Hall will be closed tomorrow so that staff can complete financial year-end processing. City officials say this is a vital step in ensuring everything is ready for the upcoming year. All normal city services will continue as normal tomorrow. If you need to report water leaks or power outages tomorrow, contact Wilson County Dispatch at their non-emergency number, which is 620-378-2369.

Oswego PD Announces New K9


The Oswego Police Department introduces its newest K9 officer.


K9 Tito is an 18-month-old dual purpose Belgian Malinois. Dual-purpose K9s can be used on both patrol and in narcotics and bomb detection.


Tito is currently at home for a week of bonding with his handler and then will be headed back to training with Torchlight K9 for certification.


Indy Looking for Input on Community Development Plan


The City of Independence is looking for input from its residents.


The window for public engagement for the Independence Community Development Plan has been extended through January 5th. Residents can help Independence plan for the future by participating in public engagement activities, including a short survey, image voting and a mapping activity.


A link to these can be found here.

PPD Makes Arrest for Distribution


A Parsons woman is arrested and multiple drugs are seized by the Parsons Police Department.


At around 11:30pm last night, PPD officers were called to a residence for a report of a burglary in progress. Upon arrival, officers made contact with 21-year-old Grace Harmon and a juvenile. Officers swept the residence, and no burglar was located, but they did notice paraphernalia lying around. After speaking to the homeowner and receiving consent, officers began a search of the residence. Officers located paraphernalia related to the distribution of marijuana as well as the use of marijuana. Officers also found vape pens with THC cartridges and over 340 grams of marijuana, which is roughly 3/4th of a pound.


Harmon was arrested on recommended charges of possession of marijuana, THC and drug paraphernalia, distribution of Marijuana and no drug tax stamp. A juvenile boy was also arrested at the residence for possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia. He was later released to his parents.

Cattle Producers Should Get Prepared for Spring Calving


Cattle producers have a lot to worry about as they move into the new year. One of those is their spring calving herds. K-State Beef Veterinarian AJ Tarpoff says producers should be prepared before that first calf is born.


Tarpoff says it's important to know the stages of the calving process and when the producer needs to step in and help with the birth.  Tarpoff says being prepared will save stress for the producer and the animal. K-State is holding a spring calving class on January 18th in Howard at West Elk High School.

Security Breach Affects Oklahoma Hospitals


 A security breach of an Oklahoma hospital group exposes personal information of recent patients.

 According to officials at INTEGRIS Health, the breach took place November 28th. Information including names, addresses, birth dates, social security numbers, and email addresses were found by individuals. Officials also say those affected individuals began receiving emails December 24th, asking for $50 to prevent the sale of their data.

 Oklahoma law enforcement and INTEGRIS officials advise not responding to the email and warn against even clicking on the links or downloads included in the email. Officials also urge those affected to freeze their accounts with Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion to prevent unauthorized new account openings or loans in their names.

Equifax (888-898-0045)

Experian (888-397-3742)

TransUnion (800-916-8800)

Be Careful Of Empty Boxes After the Holidays


 Cherokee County law enforcement officials caution residents about the risk of package deliveries and empty boxes, even after the holiday season.

 Cherokee County Sheriff David Groves says the presence of empty boxes or packaging materials outside homes could accidentally make homes more susceptible to theft.

 Groves advises residents to break down packing materials and boxes before placing them in your trash can, which will reduce their visibility. He also says it's a good idea to take pictures of valuable items, including jewelry and firearms.

 Groves also reminds residents to monitor their deliveries. Track packages and retrieve theme quickly after delivery to minimize opportunities for theft.

 Groves says these guidelines are a general guideline for safeguarding deliveries and valuables all year long.

Trash Routes Resume in Neodesha


Trash routes resume today in Neodesha.


According to the Neodesha Public Works Department, two trucks will run today picking up Monday and Tuesday's routes. Tomorrow, one truck will run Wednesday's route, and on Friday, one truck will pick up Thursday's and Friday's routes.

Cattle Industry Icon Jarold Callahan Passes


The beef industry continues to reel from the unexpected passing of Express Ranches President Jarold Callahan.


Callahan led the efforts to give birth to Cattlemen's Congress, which is a large annual stock show that starts this weekend in Oklahoma City. In addition to his work with that event, Callahan was also serving as a member of the Oklahoma State University Board of Regents. He grew up in Welch, Oklahoma and lived his life in the state, even serving as the Executive Director of the Oklahoma Cattlemen's Association.


Visitation for Callahan will be held today in Vinita from 5 until 7 p.m. at the Burckhalter-Highsmith Chapel. A celebration of life will be held on Friday at 10 a.m. at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City.

Sewer Inspection in Liberty


Sewer Lines will soon be inspected in Liberty.


The City has contracted with a company to have sewer lines tested with specialized camera equipment. This will help locate exact areas where the system is degrading that were identified by prior smoke testing. Once the areas in need of repair are located, work can begin to bring the sewer system in compliance with state and federal regulations. The testing will begin on Tuesday and no special action is needed by residents.

Bartlesville Water Supply Update


For the first time in several weeks, Bartlesville's water situation looks to be improving.


Hulah Lake's water level is above normal, but Copan Lake continues to be several feet below normal. As of yesterday afternoon, Hulah Lake is almost one foot above normal. The conservation pool is 100% full and the flood pool is 94% full. Meanwhile, Copan Lake is 7.64 ft below normal and the conservation pool is 34% full.  Bartlesville remains at Stage 2 of the Water Shortage Ordinance, with some water restrictions in effect.  Emergency water rates are not in effect at this time.

Commissioners Table Water Contract with Caney


The Coffeyville City Commission tables the contract to supply water to the City of Caney to the next commission meeting on January 9th.  Incoming Commissioners Alec Hendryx and Jim Faulkner say they wanted the issue tabled.


Caney City Administrator Kelly Zellner says there is a lot of crossover between the two cities.  Zellner says they are well over a year to two years away from starting the project. He says a contract with Coffeyville can help them in receiving grant money. This was the first meeting with Interim City Manager Tim Wilson and the last full meeting for outgoing Commissioners Bob York, Pam Jones and Jason Swindell.

Welfare Check Leads to Two Arrests


A welfare check in Cherokee County leads to the arrest of a man and woman on felony arrest warrants.


On Saturday, Galena Police Officers received a request to check the welfare of an elderly lady. The person requesting the check said there was someone with an active warrant residing at the residence. After a conversation with the elderly woman, the officers did a walk-through of the residence to ensure it was secure. During the walk-through, officers found two individuals with active felony warrants. Officers also noticed drugs and paraphernalia lying in plain view.


After obtaining a search warrant officers located additional drugs and drug paraphernalia. Arrested at the scene were 30-year-old Scott Burelson for a warrant out of Ottawa County, Oklahoma and 39-year-old Brandi King for warrants out of Cherokee County. Additional charges are being requested for both individuals for possession of methamphetamine, marijuana, and drug paraphernalia.



K-State Making Improvements for College of Ag and Extension


The College of Agriculture at Kansas State University breaks ground on two projects in 2023 with plans for more in 2024.


Director of K-State Research and Extension and College of Agriculture Dean Ernie Minton says they haven't had this type of construction at the college for decades.


Minton says the changes and improvements aren't just limited to the College of Agriculture but also include K-State Research and Extension.  Minton says K-State aspires to be an engaged university both around the state and locally on campus at the university.

Protect Your Gifts from Thieves after the Holidays


As families start to put away recently received gifts, the Cherokee County Sheriff's Office is providing some quick and easy tips to help keep them secure.


Break down boxes instead of stacking them near the curb for pickup, where they serve as a display of what items could be found inside the home. Take pictures of valuable items, such as firearms, including serial numbers, tools and jewelry. This will help law enforcement recover items in case they are stolen.


Remove any valuables from cars, especially at night, and make sure the windows are up and doors are locked. Doing this decreases the likelihood of someone rummaging through a vehicle.


KHP Receives Holiday Fuel Donation


The Kansas Highway Patrol receives fuel donations for the holidays.


This is the 33rd year they have received this donation from Fuel True. Through the Holiday Highways Safety Program, Fuel True donated vouchers for nearly 525 gallons of gas for troopers to use as they patrol the highways as the New Year holiday approaches. Fuel True is a nonprofit organization for independent petroleum distributors, gasoline retailers and convenience store owners.


Fuel True Executive Director Brian Posler says fuel distributors and convenience stores are partnering with the KHP to ensure the safety of their customers, their families and the many visitors traveling to and through Kansas over the holidays. KHP Captain Candice Breshears says this fuel helps their agency with their efforts to keep Kansas roadways safe.

Early Morning Fire Destroys Small House in Commerce

 Commerce, OK, fire crews respond to an early morning structure fire.

 Shortly after midnight this morning, the Commerce Fire Department was called to a structure fire in the 400 block of south Elm Street. Upon arrival, firefighters found a garage that had been converted into a residence engulfed in smoke and flames. The small house was completely destroyed in the blaze and a female resident was treated at the scene for minor injuries.

Also responding to the call was Quapaw City Fire and Quapaw Nation Fire.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

Coffeyville City Commission To Meet Tonight

 It's an evening for new beginnings at the Coffeyville City Commission The Commission meets tonight for their first meeting under new Interim City Manager Tim Wilson.

 Wilson says there's a lot on the agenda for his first day on the job.

Also up for approval is the agreement with the city of Caney to supply that city with potable water, and approval of multiple grant applications through the Kansas Water Office. The meeting takes place tonight at 6:30pm in the commission room at City Hall and can also be viewed online at The meeting is open to the public.

Application Period for Non-Resident Turkey Permits Set To Open in Kansas

 Non-Residents who would like to hunt in the Kansas spring turkey season will have the chance to apply for a new lottery draw starting on January 9th .

 The new lottery draw is part of a larger strategy by the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks to reduce overall hunting pressure and turkey harvest in the state. This is in response to a nation-wide decline in turkey populations. Non-Residents may apply for a permit – valid only in a single unit – in Units 1, 2, 3, 5, or 6 and a $10 application fee will apply. Similar to the Kansas non-resident deer permit draw, any leftover non-resident spring turkey permits will be offered on a first-come, first-served basis shortly after the draw.


To apply for a 2024 non-resident turkey permit:

  1. Visit between the dates of 01/09/24 – 02/09/24.
  2. Select “Purchase Licenses, Permits, & Tags”
  3. Login to your account
  4. Select “Limited Draw Applications”

For more information on turkey hunting in Kansas, go here.

Body Of Missing Cowley County Woman Found In Pond

 The Cowley County Sheriff's Office says the body of a woman missing since Friday has been found in Winfield.

 Authorities say the body of 69 year old Janet Spoon was found yesterday in a pond behind a Winfield landscaping business.

Spoon was last seen on Friday night after spending a evening out with friends. Her car was found on Saturday in a field in east of Winfield. Anyone with information about Spoon's disappearance should contact Cowley County Emergency Communications at 620-221-54-47.

Fatal Christmas Day Car Crash in Southwest Missouri

 An Illinois woman is dead after a single vehicle crash on Christmas Eve southwest of Springfield, MO.

 75 year old Irvin Smith was driving a 2010 Ford Fusion south on State Route H through Friestatt, MO, around 6:15 Saturday evening. According to the Missouri highway Patrol, the Fusion failed to negotiate a sharp curve, left the roadway, and struck an abandoned house. Smith suffered moderate injuries and was taken to Mercy Hospital in Joplin. His passenger, 70 year old Mary Smith was pronounced dead at the scene by the Lawrence County Coroner.

Both victims were from Dupo, Illinois.

Bartlesville Tree Mulching

 The city of Bartlesville announces it will offer free Christmas tree mulching at the upper level parking lot of Sooner Park, 420 S.E. Madison Blvd. 

 Undecorated, live trees may be dropped off at the designated fenced area, just east of Madison Boulevard. 

Trees will be accepted through Jan. 31. The mulch will be available to the public at no cost at the drop site Monday through Friday as quantities allow. Recipients are responsible for loading their own mulch. 

For more information, call 918-338-41-31.


Christmas Day Accident In Labette County Leaves Two Injured


A two-vehicle accident involving a Labette County sheriff's deputy leaves both drivers injured.


The accident happened around 9:30 yesterday morning.  A 2022 Ford F150 pickup driven by 44-year-old Deputy Krystal Hubbard, of Dennis, was traveling west on US 160 between Mound Valley and Altamont.  Hubbard attempted to turn south onto K-101 in front of the 1999 Ford Ranger pickup driven by 31-year-old Jason Schlotz, of Altamont, causing the Ranger to hit the F150


Both drivers were taken to Labette County Health.  Hubbard sustained minor injuries while Schlotz was reported with serious injuries.

Latest Rainfall Totals

Mother nature sent rain this year for Christmas.


Here's a look at some of the area rain gauges over the past 24 hours:


KGGF Studios: 1.11” (Storm total rainfall: 1.41”)
Sedan Mesonet Station: 0.69”
Howard Mesonet Station: 0.64”
Parsons Mesonet Station: 1.96”
Cherokee Mesonet Station: 1.33”
Nowata Mesonet Station: 0.85”
Copan Mesonet Station: 0.71”
Vinita Mesonet Station: 0.98”
Miami Mesonet Station: 1.03”

Two Injured in Crash Near Pittsburg


Two are injured in a crash near Pittsburg.


According to the Kansas Highway Patrol, 47-year-old Christopher Johnson of Carl Junction was traveling south on South 260th Street last night. 31-year-old Brendan Finley of Pittsburg was traveling east on K-126. Johnson failed to stop at the stop sign at the intersection and was struck by Finley's SUV. Both received suspected minor injuries and were taken to Ascension Via Christi in Pittsburg. Both men were wearing seatbelts.

A Coffeyville Christmas Radio Program


Christmas is fast approaching and if you're looking for a way to get in the holiday spirit, KGGF has you covered. 


A rebroadcast of KGGF's "A Coffeyville Christmas" is coming up on Christmas morning at 8 a.m. on The Mighty 690.  On Saturday, December 16th, members from the community came together to perform this Christmas variety program on the radio including two old-time radio dramas: Our Miss Brooks and Gunsmoke.  The program raised more than $700 towards restoring the historic Midland Theater in Coffeyville between sponsors donating towards the program and freewill donations at the door.  In addition to the two dramas, local musicians Chris Freund and Haylie Bagwell performed along with the United Singers group.  A crowd of about 60 was in attendance to watch the live radio show from the basement fellowship hall of St. Paul's Lutheran Church.  Pastors Jon Franson and Joe Brooks helped out by reading the Christmas story from the bible.  Countless individuals helped put this show on, including many performers who were once involved in the Coffeyville Community Theater group, which was active before the 2007 flood destroyed Floral Hall.  Many community helped out behind the scenes making the show a reality.  The program is also available in its entirety below.



Senator Peck Questions Funding Amount for Turkey Population Research


The Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks and the National Turkey Federation are providing Kansas State University biologists $1.5 million of the $1.8 million being used to research the declining turkey population in Kansas.


State Senator Virgil Peck says he wonders if that money is being well spent.


Peck says as a believer in small government he looks at this and asks why is the Kansas government spending that kind of money on this.  The biologists will capture and mark Eastern and Rio Grande wild turkeys across Kansas public and private lands and place transmitters and leg bands on them to monitor their locations and movements.

USDA Clears Santa's Reindeer for Entry into US


Santa and his reindeer are getting some help from the U.S. Department of Agriculture that will clear the way for Santa's annual delivery trip.


The United States doesn't allow animals from other countries to come into the U.S. without a total health check. This is to help prevent them from bringing in foreign animal diseases and infecting livestock here.


USDA's Port Services Dr. Brianna Schur says they were able to do a telemedicine health check of the reindeer and clear them for takeoff. When Santa is ready to enter the U.S. vets will be ready to check the reindeer again.  Hear the full report from USDA's Gary Crawford here.

2024 Grocery Store Food Price Predictions


Food prices could make headlines again in 2024. USDA Economist Megan Sweitzer says food prices for the upcoming year could be trending positively.


According to the USDA, food prices increased by over 11% in 2022 but just five percent for the current year. Sweitzer says they have their predictions for what prices will do for 2024.  Grocery store food prices range from going down by about five percent to going up by about four and a half percent.

NORAD Prepping to Track Santa for 68th Year


The North American Aerospace Defense Command is preparing to track Santa for the 68th year.


NORAD will begin tracking Santa on Christmas Eve, alongside its primary mission of monitoring and defending North American airspace. Interested trackers worldwide can call 1-877-HI-NORAD to find out Santa's location, while the NORAD Santa Tracker website will showcase Santa's flight.


The website also features Santa’s North Pole Village, which includes a holiday countdown, games, a movie theater, holiday music, a web store and more. The link to the Santa Tracker website can be found here.

Candy Making Tips for Christmas


Candy making can be as much of a holiday tradition as decorating the tree, putting up the lights and exchanging gifts.


However, some holiday candy can be a lot more difficult to make. Kansas State University Food Scientist Karen Blakeslee says candy is divided into two categories crystalline and non-crystalline.


Blakeslee says if a candy recipe calls for butter, follow the recipe and don’t make any substitutions, especially for making fudge.  Blakeslee says when making fudge, any crystals that form on the side of the pan can be dissolved with a brush and some warm water or by placing a lid over the pan for a minute to trap in the steam.

US 169 Near Thayer to Reopen Today


Just in time for Christmas, the Kansas Department of Transportation announces the reopening of U.S. 169 near Thayer.


This seven-mile stretch of highway, which has been closed since July, is expected to reopen by late afternoon today. Upgrades done include the addition of passing lanes and the replacement of the mainline pavement. While the work continues drivers are reminded to be cautious around construction and to follow speed limits.


To stay informed about highway conditions and construction updates, visit KDOT's website at

Sedan Mayor Receives Farewell Gift


The City of Sedan is saying goodbye to the mayor and a longtime public servant.


Mayor Jack Warren oversaw his final city council meeting, before incoming mayor Bryan Blankinship takes over in January.


Sedan city employee Leslie McGuire prestend Mayor Warren with a gift in honor of his service to the city.


The city council meets on the first and third Tuesdays of each month, with the next meeting on January 3rd at 5:30 p.m. at Sedan City Hall.

Labette County Students Giving Back this Holiday Season


Giving is the theme this holiday season for USD 506 students.


Bartlett Elementary School students in 2nd, 3rd, and 4th grade donated dog food, toys, and other supplies to the Proud Animals Lovers Shelter. The students had been collecting items for weeks and presented the donation to shelter volunteers, along with receiving a tour of the facility.


PALS completely runs off of donations and volunteers to serve as a non-profit, no-kill animal shelter.


This generous donation comes just one week after another group of USD 506 students, 5th graders in Hanna Haraughty's classroom, donated toys to the Toys for Tots drive in Altamont.

Final Weekend for Brown Mansion Tours


This is the final weekend to spend the holiday season at the Brown Mansion.


For years, Southeast Kansas natives have enjoyed the sights of the mansion, with Christmas trees and light lining nearly every square inch.


Coffeyville Chamber President Candi Westbrook says this year may have the most to see yet.


Tours are still available for Saturday at 6:30 and 7:30 p.m.


Tickets are $10 each, and all donations go towards the restoration and maintenance of the mansion.


A link to purchase tickets can be found HERE.

Indy Gets Road Grant


The City of Independence is receiving nearly $1.3 million in federal funds to improve the safety of local roadways.


That's according to a press release from Governor Laura Kelly.  Independence is one of only 48 successful Implementation grants announced nationally this round. Nineteen communities across the state will receive $8.3 million for projects that improve safety on local roadways. This is the third round of Kansas grant recipients through the federal Safe Streets and Roads for All Program for 2023.


The program is structured so the federal government covers 80% of the project costs and the local government covers up to 20%. KDOT’s Match Pilot Program contributes to the local match requirement, covering part or all of the local match cost requirements.

Major Water Leak in Cherryvale


There is a major water leak in Cherryvale.


The leak is located on West 1st and Catherine. According to the city, water is shut off from Front and Catherine to 3rd and Catherine. Stay tuned for updates.

Man Throws Bicycle Frame at Victim


A Washington County Man is in court after allegedly throwing a bicycle frame at another person.


James Tiry was in court yesterday afternoon on charges of domestic assault and battery with a dangerous weapon after being arrested last Saturday. According to an affidavit, Tiry arrived at the victim's location and asked to be let in to charge his cell phone. The victim obliged, but shortly after entering, Tiry allegedly threw a metal object resembling a bicycle frame at the victim. Police identified a large gash on the victim’s head from the incident and arrested Tiry, who also has multiple charges from other incidents this year, including multiple domestic abuse charges. He is currently being held over on a $100,000 bond and his next court date is set for Jan. 5th.

Commodities Available Today in Fredonia


Commodities will be available for those in need today in Fredonia.


This morning starting at 8 a.m., commodities will be distributed at the Fredonia SKIL Resource Center at 623 Monroe. Those receiving commodities must live in Wilson County. For more information or if you have any questions, contact Nick Dahna or Rynae Ramsey 620-378-4881.

NASA Exhibit Coming to Coffeyville


The Aviation Heritage Museum in Coffeyville will host a nationally touring exhibit next year.


The NASA Exhibit is called “Explore the Universe”, and will take visitors on a journey through the triumphs and challenges faced by astronauts as they explore the vastness of space.


Tourism Director Amy Dollar says there will be many attractions to check out.


The new exhibit will be open between March 20th and June 14th, 2024 at the museum in Pfister Park.


Dollar says schools and clubs should reach out to schedule a visit time.


The Aviation Heritage Museum's hours are Wednesday – Sunday 1 p.m. - 4 p.m. or by appointment and admission is free. 

PPD Giving Free Gun Locks


Citizens can pick up a free gun lock at the Parsons Police Department.


These have been made available through a grant from the Parsons Area Community Foundation in partnership with PPD, the Labette County Sheriff's Office and the Parsons Chapter of Moms Demand Action. Chief Robert Spinks emphasizes the importance of practicing safe gun storage to protect children, prevent accidents and deter criminals.


The free gun locks can be picked up 24 hours a day at the front lobby of the police department at 217 North Central. Distribution will continue until the current supply is gone. A link for additional gun safety guidelines can be found

Safe Travel Tips for the Holiday Season


As the holiday season approaches, the Kansas Highway Patrol wants to ensure the safety of all travelers hitting the roads.


With increased holiday travel, the potential for encountering impaired drivers and the unpredictable winter weather, KHP is urging motorists to prioritize safety. Key tips include checking and preparing your vehicle, ensuring everyone is securely buckled up, designating a sober driver, stocking up on emergency essentials and staying informed about road conditions.


KHP reminds travelers to start their journeys with a full tank and charged phone, dress for the weather, and always show courtesy by moving over for first responders. To make holiday travel safer and more enjoyable, follow these guidelines and, if assistance is needed on a Kansas highway, dial *47 or *582 on the Kansas Turnpike.

Teen Arrested After Shooting in Galena


A Galena teenager is arrested after a late-night shooting.


Just after 9:00pm last night, law enforcement and emergency personnel were dispatched to a residence just outside of Galena where a 17-year-old girl had sustained a non-life-threatening gunshot wound. Cherokee County Ambulance Personnel transported the victim to a Joplin hospital.


After their investigation, Cherokee County Sheriff's Deputies arrested 19-year-old Gavin Lamon Howard, who is being held on allegations of aggravated battery, aggravated endangering a child, criminal use of a weapon, possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia and interference with law enforcement.

Missing Moline Teen


***** Update *****

The missing teen has been found safe.


***** Original Story *****


A Moline teenager is missing. 17-year-old Sean Orlando is a missing/endangered runaway who went missing on Saturday. Orlando is 5'7" and weighs 150 pounds. He has dark brown hair and brown eyes.


Anyone with information regarding Orlando's disappearance or anyone who might know his whereabouts should call the Elk County Sheriff's Office at (620)374-2108 or the Kansas Bureau of Investigation at (785)296-4017.

Independence House Destroyed in Structure Fire


***** Update 7:30 a.m. *****


According to Independence Fire-EMS, the fire was brought under control around 6:15 a.m.  A patient was treated on scene and possibly one deceased animal was found in the structure. Assisting Independence Fire-EMS was Cherryvale Fire-EMS, Independence Rural Fire, and Dearing Rural Fire.



Original Story:

Local fire crews are responding to a structure fire just south of the intersection of East Main street and 2nd Street in Independence. Crews from Independence, Dearing and Montgomery County are all responding to the fire at the northwest corner of 2nd and East Magnolia.  About a dozen emergency vehicles are on the scene.  The fire was reported around 5:45 this morning.  There is no word yet regarding any injuries.

Fredonia Christmas Pageant Tonight


The Annual Christmas Pageant in Fredonia takes place tonight.


The event is now in its 90th year and will feature local students and community members. The performance will be tonight at 7 p.m., and a dress rehearsal will be held at 1 p.m. and is also open to the public. The Christmas story will be portrayed and several choirs and soloists will perform as well. The pageant and rehearsal will take place in Bateman Auditorium.

Oswego Moving to Online Bill Pay


Residents of Oswego will soon have a new way to pay bills online.


Beginning in January, the City of Oswego will be launching a new online billing and payment system called FrontDesk. The new system offers flexibility to view and pay utility bills in an easy-to-use online portal.


FrontDesk users will have 24/7 access to important information such as utility usage rates, service requests, and AutoPay options.


Those who are already receiving electronic bills will need to create a new account, or fill out a new form with the City office before February 1, 2024.


For questions, contact the City Office at 620-795-4433.

New Year's Hike at Elk City State Park


Montgomery County residents who love the outdoors will be able to begin 2024 on the trails.


The Independence Chamber of Commerce is teaming up with Elk City State Park for a New Year's hiking and biking excursion.


Chamber President Lisa Wilson says there are multiple opportunities to participate.


The event is free to the public, and it is recommended to arrive 20-30 minutes before the hike or bike ride.



Water Project Tomorrow in Sedan


Sedan residents may notice low water pressure tomorrow due to maintenance.


Tomorrow around 9 a.m., the city will be replacing the main meter located at the city's point of entry. Residents may experience low water pressure during the change-out, and water conservation is asked while work is being done. The project is estimated to take about two hours.


Montgomery County Sheriff Launching DUI Campaign


Area law enforcement agencies are gearing up for the holidays.


According to the Montgomery County Sheriff's Office, The New Year's holiday period outranks most other holidays in the number of crashes in which at least one of the drivers is impaired by alcohol or other drugs.


Beginning around December 26 and continuing through January 2nd, the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office will join many other law enforcement agencies across the state including the Kansas Highway Patrol in the “New Year’s Taking Down DUI” traffic enforcement campaign.


Sheriff Ron Wade says if you are going to be using any impairing substance, don’t even consider driving. Wade says it's imperative to line up a ride with a sober acquaintance or other safe transportation before you go out.

Neodesha FD Welcomes New Volunteer


The Neodesha Fire Department is welcoming a new volunteer.


Connor Berger has been welcomed to the department as a new volunteer firefighter. The Neodesha Fire Department is always looking for volunteers, and if you are over the age of 18, a Neodesha resident and are interested in serving the community, you are encouraged to apply. If interested, contact Fire Chief Keenan Fyfe for more information at 620-325-2642 or stop by the station at 112 S 4th Street.

Changes in Bartlesville Water Status


The city of Bartlesville is rolling back one stage of its water emergency.


The city has moved from Stage 3 of the Water Shortage Ordinance back to Stage 2 this week after weekend precipitation as well as a revision to the method of calculating the City’s weighted water supply remaining.


Bartlesville Water Utilities Director Terry Lauritsen said earlier this week that the revised method will result in a more accurate reflection of the City's water status.


Under the new calculation, more weight is given to Hulah Lake compared with the city's other sources.


Lauritsen gives an example, saying the Copan Lake level is currently 36.1 percent full, but it only accounts for 8.91 percent of the City’s overall water rights, while the Hulah Lake level is 78.3 percent full, and it accounts for 59.81 percent of the City’s overall supply.

Innovation Youth Labs Robots and Drones


Two Innovation Youth Lab sessions will be held in Coffeyville next month.


The first is on Saturday, January 13th and the second on Monday, January 15th. Sessions are scheduled from 9:00am to 3:00pm with lunch included. Content will be repeated for the sessions so each participant must choose one session that best fits their schedule. The age range for this class is nine to twelve. Participants will spend the morning team building a robot with competition after lunch before building a drone. 


Project Coordinator Jim Correll says they are excited to offer their second Youth Innovation Lab after the success of the first event last spring. The sessions and lunch are free and will all take place at Coffeyville’s Reawakening headquarters. Registration is required and the deadline to register is January 5th. Those registering after January 5th will be notified if any spots are open for the class. A link to register can be found here.  

Montgomery County Closing for Holidays


The Montgomery County offices will be closing for the upcoming holidays. The offices will be closed the next two Fridays, December 22nd and 29th, and two Mondays, December 25th and January 1st, for the Christmas and New Year holidays.


The next two county commission meetings have been rescheduled due to the holidays as well. The last meeting for December will be on Wednesday, December 27th and the first meeting for the new year will be on Tuesday, January 2nd. Both meetings are at 9:00am in the basement of the Judicial Building in the County Commissioner Room.

Preventing Cold Weather Illnesses


Frostbite and hypothermia are two concerns anyone who spends too much time out in the cold has to worry about. Kansas Family Medicine Doctor Ron Varner says it is important to know the signs of both.


Varner says there are a few simple tips to help prevent frostbite, hypothermia or any other impact of the cold weather.  Anyone suffering from frostbite or hypothermia should seek medical treatment as soon as possible.

New Police Chief Takes Over In Joplin

 The Joplin Police Department has a new chief, as Dr. Richard Pearson was sworn in yesterday.

 Pearson recently served as Captain of the Jefferson County Public School System Police Department in Louisville, Kentucky, as well as serving 22 years in the Louisville Metro Police Department. He taught in the Criminal Justice Department of Ivy Tech Community College in Sellersburg, Indiana.

 He holds a Master of Science and a bachelor’s degree in justice administration from the University of Louisville. He graduated from the FBI’s National Police Academy in Quantico, VA, and the Southern Police Institute in Louisville. He recently received his Doctorate in Criminal Justice at Saint Leo University in St. Leo, Florida.

 Joplin City Manager Nick Edwards says Pearson's knowledge and issue management provides a solid foundation to address issues in the community while also improving the police department’s delivery of services.

 Pearson says he is looking forward to getting acquainted with Joplin citizens and the community.

 He replaces Sloan Rowland, who retired in June.

Quick Thinking Saves House From Being a Total Loss


 Quick thinking by a homeowner saves a house from being a total loss in a fire.

 Just before 5:00 yesterday afternoon, multiple fire departments responded to a fire reported at 1601 North Dreher Street in Weir. Crews discovered flames and heavy smoke through the roof on the north side of the single story home.

 Authorities believe the fire started in the utility room, then spread to the kitchen and garage.

 After Weir and Cherokee Township departments arrived, mutual aid from Scammon, Columbus, West Mineral and Galena was received. The fire was contained in about 30 minutes; no injuries were reported.

 Fire officials say quick thinking by the homeowner kept the fire from spreading further, since the owner discovered the fire in a closed room, and shut the door again, keeping damage to a minimum.

Search For KDOC Resident Continues


 Kansas Department of Corrections resident Clifford Leon Evans has been placed on escape status after it was reported yesterday afternoon that he did not return to the facility while serving his sentence at the Johnson County Work Release center.

 Evans, a 52-year-old white male, has brown hair, brown eyes, is 5 feet 10 inches tall and weighs 131 pounds.

 Evans is currently serving a sentence for violating his parole. Evans was convicted in Johnson County for possession of opiates. He is serving that sentence at the Johnson County Department of Corrections Adult Residential Center from which he walked away. Under an agreement between the KDOC and JCDOC, residents who have release plans that are appropriate to Johnson County are housed at the ARC to promote their successful reintegration back into the community.

 Anyone with information on Evans can call the Kansas Bureau of Investigation at (800) 572-7463 or local law enforcement at 911.

Parsons Shop With a Cop Celebrates Another Successful Year


 A little Christmas cheer was given to the community Sunday afternoon with the Parsons Annual Shop with a Cop Program.

 Parsons Police were able to shop with 30 children from the community, in partnership with USD 503 and support monetarily from the local community.

 Parsons Police Chief Robert Spinks says the program is one of the most important opportunities that his officers get to reach out and interact with children of the community in a truly positive manner. Spinks says it helps the public's perception of law enforcement as well as connecting officers with the future of our community.

 The Parsons Police Department also partners with other agencies to help with the shopping event, including the Kansas Highway Patrol, Labette County Sheriff's Office, Altamont Police Department, as well as the Parsons Fire Department.

 Donations are taken throughout the year to help families during the holiday season. Contact the Parsons Police Department for more information on how you can help next year.

Overcorrecting Cement Truck Blocks Road


 An overcorrection is the likely cause of a cement truck accident yesterday morning in Galena.

 The accident happened around 11:10 at the intersection of 27th and Main in Galena, when a southbound cement mixer truck left the road to the right, overcorrected and overturned.

 The driver was not injured, though all lanes of the road were blocked for about three hours.

 The roadway was reopened around 2:15 p.m.

Windshield Glare Likely To Be Cause of Fatal Crash


 The Oklahoma Highway Patrol says windshield glare is likely the cause of a fatal crash late last week in Delaware County, Oklahoma.

 The OHP says the crash happened Friday around 6:49 pm., about two and a half miles north of Jay. A Pontiac Grand Am was traveling south on US-59, just north of East 365 Road when headlights hit the windshield. The vehicle then drifted off the roadway to the right, spun out and hit a tree.

 21-year-old Riley Phelan, of Salina, OK, was pronounced deceased at the scene. A 19-year-old passenger was treated at Grove Integris Hospital and released.

 The investigation is ongoing.

Osage County Commissioners Look to Improve Fairground Sound System


 The replacement of the sound system at the Osage County Fairgrounds in Pawhuska was the topic of conversation during yesterday's Osage County Commissioners meeting.

 During yesterday's meeting, board members took a step in the process to do that.

 After discussion, Warner Audio Video Consulting and Design was chosen for the project. The total cost of the project will be nearly $50,000.

The New Kansas License Plate is Selected


After nearly 270,000 votes have been cast a new Kansas license plate is announced. The winning plate has a picture of the top of the capitol in the lower left corner and has "to the stars" written at the bottom.


 Governor Laura Kelly says she wants to recognize the beautiful designs on social media that, unfortunately, couldn't be used. She says Kansans will notice that license plates across the country are moving to simpler designs, which is because of law enforcement and license plate reader requirements. This is the first time the state has allowed public input on the standard tag.


Governor Kelly says she has asked the Department of Revenue to review their process for selecting license plate designs moving forward so they can get public input from the very start.

Sustainable Fuel Refinery to Open Near Bartlett Soybean Facility


A Canadian-based sustainable fuel company confirms its plans to develop a refinery north of the Bartlett soybean facility. Azure Sustainable Fuels CFO Stuart Roberts says this will be a 10,000-barrel-per-day processing facility.


Bartlett's Bill Webster says this will have a significant economic impact on the area.  Construction on the facility should begin soon and would take about two years to complete. During that time, the company estimates 1500 construction jobs on a rolling schedule with 150 people working on site once the facility is complete. Local companies, including those in Coffeyville and Fredonia, will complete most of the work.


Cherryvale Historical Museum Moving


 The Cherryvale Historical Museum is moving to a new building.

 At the beginning of 2024, board members and volunteers will transition from the former location at 215 East Fourth Street in Cherryvale, to their new building at 322 East Main--the former First Baptist Church and Fellowship Hall.

 The Museum Board says the move will bring the museum onto Main Street in a more visible and larger location, opposite the Public Library and Lincoln Elementary School. The museum thanks the First Baptist Church and look forward to preserving the 1902 Historic Baptist Church building to honor past and future generations.

 Begun in 1964, the Cherryvale Historical Museum board members and volunteers will spend the winter months repainting, packing archival materials, and moving. They encourage everyone to check the Cherryvale Historical Museum Facebook page for updates on the move.

PSU Tuba Christmas A Low Key Success


 Local low brass players joined together yesterday afternoon for an annual holiday cheer event.

 The 14th annual Holly Jolly Tubas concert was held at Pittsburg State University.

 The band was comprised of tubas and baritones, however, all low brass players were welcome.

 Close to 50 musicians were there, ranging from eleven to eighty-one years old, playing 25 holiday classics.

 Plans are already in the works for next year's performance.

Webb City Road Rage Incident Leads To Arrest


 A road rage incident Friday afternoon in Webb City leads to the arrest of a Granby man.

 Around 1:30, Webb City Police were called to the intersection of 13th and Madison Streets, in what a caller described as a road rage incident. The caller said the driver of a blue Chevrolet truck was waving a rifle outside the driver's side window as they were traveling northbound on Madison.

 Police found the pickup near 13th and Madison, with a felony traffic stop initiated soon after. The Granby man, whose name has not been released at this time, was detained without incident.

 Officers seized a rifle from the truck. The driver was taken into custody on charges of driving while revoked, open container, driving while intoxicated, persistent offender, and unlawful possession of a firearm.

Cherokee Nation Using Funds to Treat Cancer

 A signing ceremony held late last week signifies funds that will be used to treat and battle cancer.

 Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Chuck Hoskin Jr. held the ceremony, as the council passes a bill contributing $8 million to the OU Health Stephenson Cancer Center to build a treatment center in Tulsa and an additional $8 million to build a similar center in Fort Smith.

 Hoskin Jr. said the Cherokee Nation is always looking to improve the quality of life for its people. 

 Hoskin Jr. talks about how impactful this will be for the Cherokee Nation moving forward. 

 The bill was unanimously passed by the Cherokee Nation council.

High Speed Crash Leads To DUI Arrest


 A high-speed crash in Joplin Friday night leads to the arrest of the driver.

 Joplin Police say the accident happened around 11:30 Friday night at the 50th and South Main Street roundabout, when a Honda passenger car, traveling south on Main at speeds close to 100 miles per hour, ramped the roundabout.

 The male driver was rushed to an area hospital, while an adult male passenger later received medical care.

 The investigation is being conducted as a DWI crash. At least 4 signs were damaged and destroyed during the accident.

 No names have been released as of yet; the investigation is ongoing.

Two Names Released in Friday's Osage County Collision


 The Oklahoma Highway Patrol have released the names of two victims in Friday’s fatality crash in Osage County that killed four people.

 The OHP says 72-year-old Rita Nelson and 37-year-old Brandy Morgan, both of Pawhuska, were in a 2015 Ford Explorer involved in the two-vehicle crash on State Highway 99, between U.S. Highway 60 and State Highway 10. Both women were pronounced deceased at the scene.

 Information on the two other victims in the second vehicle have not yet been released.

 The crash took place around 11:20 Friday morning. At least one vehicle caught on fire. State Highway 99 was closed for more than five hours after the collision.

 The investigation is ongoing.

Multi-Fatality Accident in Osage County


Highway 99 in Osage County, Oklahoma is closed after a multi-fatality crash.


According to the Oklahoma Highway Patrol, the crash was reported just before noon today on highway 99. As of an hour ago, 99 remains closed from the intersection of U.S. Highway 60 north to State Highway 10. There is no word yet when the highway will reopen. Two vehicles were involved in the crash, killing four. Oklahoma Highway Patrol is on the scene as the investigation continues.

Independence Receives Transportation Grant for High Injury Network


 The city of Independence receives a federal transportation grant to reduce injury accidents.

 The SS4A Project looks to implement safety improvements along its higher-injury roadways, including several low-cost, high-impact countermeasures to reduce and eventually eliminate injury crashes. The project will include pedestrian enhancements, ADA accessibility improvements, school zone improvements, speed management, and roadway treatment.

 Total funding for the project from the U.S. Transportation Department will total over $1.2 million dollars.

Caney Looking for Residents Assistance in EPA Regulations


 The City of Caney is looking for residents' assistance in meeting recent U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regulations requiring public water supply systems to develop a Lead Service Line Inventory of water system-owned and resident-owned service lines.

 The report must be submitted by the city to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment by October 16, 2024.

 While these contaminants are not in the source water, they can enter tap water through the corrosion of service line piping and older household plumbing materials. The City is required under drinking water regulations to send surveys to all customers.

 The deadline for completing and returning the survey to the city is February 15th, 2024, and can be mailed to the City of Caney or dropped off at the City Hall 100 West Fourth Avenue location.

 The survey and additional information on the Lead and Copper Rule and identifying lead pipes and plumbing can be here

Possible Charges Against California Woman In Allen County


 A report of a man threatening his wife Wednesday proves to be false.

 According to Allen County Sheriff Bryan Murphy, deputies were dispatched to a residence in Gas early Wednesday evening in response to a call of a man threatening his wife with a gun. An update received a few minutes later indicated the man was allegedly holding his wife hostage at gunpoint, threatening to kill her.

 No signs of trouble were found as officers arrived, including Sheriff Murphy. Murphy says the call originated from the woman's mother in Sacramento, California. The report indicates disapproval of the woman's son-in-law.

 Murphy says no one was in danger, and charges against the woman in California are possible.

Coffeyville Native Competes at NFR


A Coffeyville native continues to make headlines at this year's Wrangler National Finals Rodeo. Coffeyville's Jake Long and partner Clint Summers just missed placing in last night's Round eight with a time of 9.4 seconds. It wasn't the team's best night but not their worst either. Heeler Long and header summers have taken first in rounds one, two, four and seven. Long says their round seven three-way tie was surprising given the tough steer they had to deal with.


Summers says their focus is on enjoying the spotlight of the NFR and taking the rounds as they come.


So far, the team has collected more than $116,000 in winnings. Round nine takes place tonight and the rodeo wraps up on Saturday with round ten.


Jake Long/Clint Summer's Results so far:


Round 1

First Place - 4.2 Seconds – Payout $30,706


Round 2

First Place - 3.8 Seconds - Payout $30,706


Round 3

Didn't place


Round 4

First Place - 3.7 seconds - Payout $30,706


Round 5

Didn't Place - 0


Round 6

Didn't Place - 8.7 seconds


Round 7

3 way tie for 1st – 4.0 seconds – Payout $24,433


Round 8

Didn't place - 9.4 seconds

Don't Ruin the Holidays: Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over


 Driving impaired can have deadly consequences. That’s why the Kansas Department of Transportation and partnering agencies want to remind all drivers to “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” this holiday season. 

 Enforcement on this law occurs every day but officers will be especially focused during the Christmas and New Years holiday season 1 to remove impaired drivers from Kansas roads.

 KDOT statistics say last year from December 13 to January 1, a total of 26 people were killed on Kansas roadways. Of these, 9 people died and 75 were injured in crashes where impairment was involved. There were 152 crashes during that timeframe involving impairment.

 You are encouraged to make arrangements before heading out for any activities.

 Other safe alternatives to driving impaired include staying home if plans include drinking. Taking the keys away and make a plan to get friends home safely, and contacting local law enforcement if a suspected impaired driver is seen.

 For a list of Kansas impaired driving educational resources, visit

Rain Today for the Four States


Parts of the KGGF listening area could see up to one inch of rain through tonight.


According to the National Weather Service, rain is expected throughout the day today, with chances diminishing into the evening hours. Rainfall totals for the Coffeyville area will likely total out around a half-inch. Areas to the south including Bartlesville and Tulsa could see between a half-inch and one inch of rain through tonight. Extreme eastern Kansas and Oklahoma into southwest Missouri and northwest Arkansas will see between one-quarter and a half-inch.


Claremore Man Dies in Fatality Crash


 A 67-year old Claremore man dies from injuries in a two vehicle accident.

 The Oklahoma Highway Patrol says the accident took place around 3:30 yesterday afternoon on OK-20 at County Line Road 4230, about 7 miles east of Claremore.

 Jeffery Tolson was southbound on county road 4230, when his Dodge Challenger failed to yield and struck a 1994 Buick Century driven by a 16-year-old girl. The girl, whose name is not being released, was westbound on OK-20 when the collision took place.

 Tolson was pronounced deceased on scene by Pafford EMS due to injuries sustained in the collision. The girl was transported by Pafford EMS to Saint Francis Hospital in Tulsa. She was treated and released.

New Trash Provider Announced for Cedar Vale


A new trash provider is being announced in Cedar Vale.


According to the city, Waste Connections will be the new provider for trash services. Trash service provided by Chautauqua county will conclude at the end of the month. Earlier this year, the county sent a letter to each city council regarding the discontinuation of trash service. More information will be available for Cedar Vale residents regarding the new service in the coming days. Rural customers who are interested in using Waste Connections will need to call 918-336-3161 to make arrangements for trash service.

Kansas Court Computer System to be Back on Line Soon


The court system in Kansas has started bringing its computer system for managing cases back online.


That's happening two months after a foreign cyberattack forced officials to shut it down, along with public access to documents and other systems. The judicial branch announced yesterday that the case management systems for district courts in 28 of Kansas's 105 counties are expected to be back online by Monday and others will follow by the end of the week.


State Representative Ron Bryce says this event should serve as a wake-up call.


Systems for the state Court of Appeals and Supreme Court and online access to documents for the public will be restored after the other systems are back online. The shutdown occurred on October 12th.


Chanute Woman Arrested on Drug Charges in Cherryvale


A Chanute woman is arrested in Cherryvale on multiple drug charges.


Early this morning at around 1:30am, Cherryvale Police Officers conducted a traffic stop on a blue 2007 Ford Mustang. The vehicle did not have any working tag lights. During the stop, the driver was identified as 29-year-old Ashley Webb. She had a suspended license and officers located a baggie of meth, mushrooms, marijuana and drug paraphernalia.


Webb was taken into custody and transported to the Montgomery County Department of Corrections and booked on the recommended charges of driving while suspended, possession of methamphetamine, hallucinogenic, marijuana and drug paraphernalia.

CFA Reminds Pet Owners of Winter Weather Care


As temperatures get lower, especially overnight, it is important to remember outside pets. Coffeyville Friends of Animals Becky Barnhart says she has some tips to help keep those doghouses warmer.


Other tips include making sure the size of the doghouse fits the dog and making sure they have sufficient food and water. Barnhart says the shelter does have a few doghouses for those who need one.


Barnhart says they also have an event coming up, where pets can get their picture taken with Santa. That event is this Monday from 6:00pm to 7:30pm at the Coffeyville Rec. There is no cost but they are looking for pet food or other donations to the shelter.

String of Burglaries Hit Parsons


After a string of burglaries, the Parsons Police Department is warning citizens to watch their property.


Over the evening hours and into the morning of Tuesday and Wednesday residences and vehicles in Parsons were hit by burglars. Officers took reports from city employees at the municipal maintenance shop on North 21st Street, where five vehicles were rummaged through. One of the vehicles sustained damage where the door was pried open, the remaining vehicles were all unlocked and not damaged. Also, in that vicinity, a lock was damaged on a trailer owned by the Parsons Fire Department. Two chainsaws were stolen out of a shed at a residence near the maintenance building. Further down the street at Ruskin's Manufacturing, an unlocked vehicle was burglarized, and hunting items were stolen.


Along with these incidents, two homes were burglarized where the back doors were kicked in and items were stolen. One house is in the 1300 block of Morgan and another near the 700 block of North 10th Street. In these cases, firearms, money and jewelry were taken from the homes. Police are currently investigating all these cases and suspect that they were all conducted by the same criminals. While following up on leads officers are making a list of suspects and persons of interest. 

Cookies With Santa Tonight in Parsons

 Young and old alike can enjoy cookies with Santa tonight in Parsons.

 The Remnant Cafe will host Cookies with Santa tonight in Parsons from 5:30 to 7:30pm. Join the fun at 17-19 Main street in Parsons.


Two Killed in Marion County Crash

 A crash in a KDOT work zone in Marion County leaves one woman and juvenile dead.

 The accident occurred just after 11am yesterday when a semi truck driven by 21 year old Trevor Stevens of Emporia was stopped and waiting on the flagger in a work zone at US 56 and 250th street. A 2011 Hyundai Elantra driven by 43 year old Jessica Henson of Wamego approached and failed to stop, striking the rear end of the semi. Neither Henson nor her juvenile passenger were wearing seatbelts and both were pronounced dead at the scene. Stevens was uninjured in the accident.

Grant Application Period Opens Soon for OK Communities Along Route 66

 The application period for the Oklahoma Route 66 Grant Program will open this Friday (December 15).

 The grant program will make $6.6 million in funding available to municipalities, non-profits and government entities located along Historic Route 66 in Oklahoma.

To be eligible for funding, projects must be used to support historic preservation or promote economic development along Route 66. Projects may be used for capital investments and for a very small number of promotional purposes.

Oversight for the grant program comes from the Oklahoma Route 66 Commission and was created by the Oklahoma legislature to revitalize and restore Oklahoma's historic stretch of Route 66. Route 66 in Oklahoma stretches from Miami to Oklahoma City and includes the towns of Afton, Vinita, Claremore, and Catoosa.

Coffeyville Announces Interim City Manager

 The city of Coffeyville welcomes a new, interim city manager.

 Coffeyville has announced the hiring of Tim Wilson as interim city manager. Wilson currently serves as chairman of the board of Prosperity Home Mortgage, LLC, and brings more than 30 years of management experience to his new position. Wilson says he's excited to get to work.

Wilson was born in Parsons and moved to Coffeyville at the age of 5. He attended Holy Name Grade School, Field Kindley High School, and Coffeyville Community College. Mr. Wilson then completed his degree at Washburn University in 1981. Wilson says his career has taken him all over the country, but he always wanted to return to Coffeyville.

Coffeyville Mayor Ann Marie Vannoster says Wilson will begin his duties on Tuesday, December 26th

Hunt For Suspect Causes School Lockdown in Humboldt

 Humboldt schools briefly went into a soft lockdown yesterday due to the search for a burglary suspect.

 At around 11:30 am yesterday, the Humboldt police executed a felony search warrant in the area of Franklin Street and Sterling Ridge. The suspect fled causing both the lockdown and the involvement of the Kansas Highway Patrol.

The suspect was wanted in connection with a burglary case in Iola. The suspect was located and taken into custody just after 3pm yesterday. The school lockdown was a precautionary measure.

Bartlesville Hospital President Announces Retirement

 Mike Moore President of Jane Phillips Hospital in Bartlesville has announced his retirement, effective December 29. 

 Moore has contributed a great deal to the Ascension St. John Jane Phillips ministry during his nearly 37-year tenure, beginning as a junior accountant and working his way up to Chief Financial Officer and then President for the past 10 years. 

Moore says the most important parts of his job were the friendships and relationships that have been built over the years, and the family atmosphere at Jane Phillips that made him want to come to work every day.  

Bryanie Swilley joined Jane Phillips on December 5th to serve as interim President to ensure a smooth transition. Ascention St. John says they will conduct a national search for Moore’s replacement. 

Winter Wheat Update


The growing season has come to an end, and the final weekly crop progress report for the year has been released from the USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service.


Winter wheat conditions across the state are rated 10% very poor, 15% poor, 36% fair, 34% good and 5% excellent. K-State Research and Extension Wildcat District Crop Agent James Coover says winter wheat in southeast Kansas is looking about the same as last year.


Coover says that as we head into the next couple of months, the crop is ready for the colder conditions.


Pasture and range conditions are rated 17% very poor, 29% poor, 39% fair, 15% good, and 0% excellent. Monthly crop progress reports will start being issued in January.

Lansing Inmate Death Ruled Homicide


The death of an inmate at the Lansing Correctional Facility is ruled as a homicide.


On Saturday, November 25th, at around 10:45pm, the Kansas Bureau of Investigation was notified by personnel at the facility that 29-year-old Darionce Terrell Charles-Lott had died after being found unresponsive in his cell. Despite life-saving measures, Charles-Lott was pronounced dead. He had been serving a 172-month sentence for a conviction in Wyandotte County for one count of aggravated battery with intent for bodily harm. He was admitted to Lansing on November 1st 2011.


Investigators with the Kansas Department of Corrections assisted in the investigation. An autopsy was conducted. While the final autopsy report is pending, preliminary autopsy results indicated Charles-Lott’s manner of death was a homicide, and the cause of death was strangulation. A man who is incarcerated at the facility has been identified. At this time, the suspect has not yet been arrested or charged for this crime. The investigation is ongoing. Once it is completed, findings will be presented to the Leavenworth County Attorney’s Office for determination of charges.

No Digging in Caney Until End of Water Crisis


 As the city of Caney keeps close tabs on water usage and water loss rates, changes in protocols are taking shape to help the town conserve as much water as possible.

 Until the water crisis for Caney is over, the city is not allowing underground digging companies to dig because of the potential of hitting a water line. City Administrator Kelley Zellner explains.

 Zellner says city protocols have changed, even in the last year.

 Zellner says water levels are being kept lower to prevent any water from running over the dam.

 For questions concerning water protocols, call Caney City Hall at 620-879-2772.

Anonymous Tips Leads to Two Arrests


An anonymous tip leads to the arrest of two men on multiple outstanding warrants.


On Monday at around 10:00pm, Montgomery County Sheriff deputies received an anonymous tip, regarding Theodeous Armstrong and William Little being spotted at 224 South 15th in Independence. Armstrong has four outstanding warrants, three for contempt of court and one for aggravated escape from custody and Little has five outstanding warrants, four of which are for failure to appear. Deputies successfully confirmed both men were inside the residence, but they refused to exit.


The Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office Emergency Response Team was activated along with the Coffeyville Police Department’s SWAT team. The Independence Police Department and Independence Emergency Services responded by providing additional support. Deputies continuously requested both men to exit the residence peacefully, eventually gaining compliance from both. Armstrong and Little were taken into custody and transported to the Montgomery County Jail. 

Christmas Events Coming to Longton


An evening of Christmas events is on the way this weekend in Longton.


This Saturday, Santa will arrive by special escort of the Longton Volunteer Fire Department. Restaurants in town will also be serving specials Saturday night. Visitors also can warm up with hot cocoa or apple cider, and free popcorn will be available at the Longton Historical Society museum. Anyone needing help wrapping a gift can bring them to the museum for their gift-wrapping fundraiser starting at 4. The evening will wrap up with bingo at the senior center starting at 7 p.m.


Emergency Operations Plan Approved in Wilson County


Wilson County commissioners approve the new Emergency Operations Plan for the county.


The plan was put together by Road and Bridge Director Kary Tatum, and approved by Commissioners Andrew Miller and Jerry Scott.


Additionally, middle school students from Fredonia will be touring the courthouse next week, and speaking with the commissioners during the tour.


Other items of business at this week's meeting include a new hiring in the County Clerk's office, with Hailey Shaw beginning this week under Clerk Kayla Bush.

Proposed Water Level Changes At OK Dam Raise Concerns From Residents

 Residents of northeastern Oklahoma are asking federal regulators for more local input before

re-licensing a hydroelectric dam at Grand Lake.

 The Grand River Dam Authority that regulates electricity generation on the 84 year old Pensacola Dam located on Grand Lake, west of Adair, is currently undergoing a license renewal process with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission or FERC (ferk). As a part of that process, G-R-D-A wants to increase the maximum reservoir level by one foot. Local residents and advocacy groups say this increase will make flooding worse in communities upstream from the dam, including those that border the Tar Creek Superfund site.

FERC is expected to formally begin its review of G-R-D-A's application in the coming months.

Pittsburg Murder Suspect Arrested in Arkansas

 A suspect in a Crawford County murder is arrested in Arkansas.

 33 year old Jemon Allen was arrested yesterday (Tuesday) by US Marshals in Pine Bluff, Arkansas. Allen was wanted on a first degree murder warrant by the Pittsburg Police Department. The warrant is in connection to the August 20 shooting death of 36 year old Justin Krogen outside of a Pittsburg bar.

Police are asking anyone with information about the shooting to call Pittsburg police at 620-231-1700 or the automated tip line at 620-231-TIPS.

Coffeyville City Manager Bids Farewell To Commission, City

 The Coffeyville City Commission says goodbye to a departing City Manager.

 City Manager Mark Hall made a special presentation at last night's (Tuesday's) city commission meeting, entitled Coffeyville – Past, Present and Future, that examined the city's progress during his time in his current position. Hall told the commission that thing may look grim at the moment, but that Coffeyville is a good town, full of good people, so the future for the city looks bright, and that the people here are writing the story of the city's future.

City Commissioners also expressed their thanks for Hall's work. Vice-Mayor Robert York says Hall did many good things for the city that residents may not be aware of.

In other business at last night's (Tuesday's) meeting, commissioners approved funding for the city to purchase four new mowers, seven new tablets, and eleven sets of bunker gear for the Coffeyville Fire Department.

The next meeting will be a public hearing for the fiscal year 2023 budget amendments. That meeting will be held on December 26th , at 6:30pm in the Commission Room at City Hall and will also be broadcast live on the city's YouTube channel.

Oklahoma Man Pleads Guilty to Voluntary Manslaughter

 An Afton, OK, man enters a guilty plea to federal charges.

 24 year old Samson Frye, Jr., entered the guilty plea to voluntary manslaughter charges in federal court yesterday. The charges stem from Frye's role in the 2018 death of his infant son, 3 month old Kingson Frye.

According to court documents, Frye admitted to waking up on November 9, 2018, in the middle of the night to the sound of the infant crying. Frye says he tried to get the child to go back to sleep, but he continued crying. As a part of his plea deal, Frye then admitted to shaking and dropping the child in a way that caused his death.

Delaware County prosecutors originally charged Frye with first degree murder child abuse but had to re-file the charges in federal court due to the McGirt ruling.

Holiday Haunted House In Nowata

 Those who prefer a bit of a scare with their holiday cheer can find it in Nowata.

 The Oklahoma Asylum in Nowata is hosting a Curse of Krampus event this Saturday (Dec. 16th). The Asylum is an isolated experience in a 1940’s era sanitarium where you and your friends or family are admitted right as the other patients break free and take over. It is advised to wear clothing and shoes you do not mind getting dirty.

Tickets are $25 per person and upgrades and groups rates are available. The event runs from 7 - 9 pm. For tickets, go here

CCC Santa Letter Drop Off

 The Coffeyville Community College Bookstore has been very good all year long and because of that, they have been chosen to be an official drop off location for letters to Santa.

 As an official drop off location, there is a Letters-To-Santa mailbox inside the bookstore on the CCC Campus. If you want to receive a personalized response from Santa, include the child's name and address while dropping off their letter. Santa will reply as long as letters are received by Friday at 4pm.

Bookstore manager Aaron Phillips says the bookstore has a special North Pole carrier to deliver the letters directly to Santa. Drop off your child's letter to Santa at the CCC Bookstore, and, to make sure Santa's reply reaches you in time, make sure the child's name and address are written clearly and are easy to read.

ICC Esports End Year with Several Wins


Multiple Independence Community College Esports teams see success at the end of the 2023 season.


The ICC Esports Overwatch team won the NACE Open Plus Division 6 Championship Finals with a 3 – 0 victory. This win followed a successful day at the Wildcat League hosted at Kansas State's Student Union, where Independence, Highland, Coffeyville and Pratt competed in the final playoffs. ICC Esports took first place in Overwatch, Call of Duty and Mortal Kombat. The Smash Bros team finished 2nd and the Fortnite team 3rd.


Head Esports Coach Keelan McCutcheon says it was an incredible opportunity for all the teams and coaches to showcase their hard work in an environment full of competitors and fans. He says he can't emphasize enough how proud he is of each team at ICC and the dedicated effort they put in this semester to reach this point.


Full Time School Weeks Returning to USD-436


 Five day school weeks are returning to USD-436 after winter break.

 Caney Superintendent Blake Vargas says water saving measures implemented by the district are working, which means the calendar set at the beginning of the year will not be altered for second semester. Water saving measures will continue to be in effect.

 Also adopted during last night's meeting was a new non resident policy. Vargas says the policy will vary between K through six, and seven through 12th grades.

 A report of the latest audit was also given by John Regier of Loyd Group, with no concerns found in the operation of the district.

Washington County Commission Meets

 The Washington County Commissioners met yesterday (Monday) morning to discuss several items of business.

 The commissioners voted to establish membership in an intergovernmental cooperative purchasing agreement with N-P-P-Gov. The agreement allows county public safety agencies to take advantage of special pricing on purchases.

The commissioners also voted to accept a donation of a truck that will be converted to a fire truck thanks to a more than $28,000 grant from The Lyon Foundation.

Additionally, the commissioners surplussed and voted to dispose of several older computers.

The commissioners will meet again next Monday at 9:30 am.

USD 447 Passes Resolution on Out of District Students

 The Cherryvale School Board meets and discusses out-of-district students.

 The USD 447 board held a public hearing regarding the enrollment of non-residents students, but no public comments were made. At last night's (Monday's) regular meeting, the board heard the final reading of the district policy on the matter. Board member Gina Booie makes the official motion.

The board passed the resolution and adopted the new policy by a unanimous vote. The next meeting of the Cherryvale School Board will be on January 8th

Tense Commission Meeting in Nowata County

 The Nowata County Commissioners met Monday morning to discuss a few important topics which led to some tense conversation.

 Nowata County Treasurer Rachell Marrs had questions for Commissioner Troy Friddle surrounding enforcement of handbook rules.

Marrs says it can be a struggle to enforce certain rules when other rules are not being enforced. 

Marrs is referencing instances where county employees are driving work vehicles to and from their homes. Friddle responded to Marrs by saying many of those employees like those in the sheriff's office and on county road crews are on the clock as soon as they are in their vehicles. 

The commissioners next approved an election board reimbursement claim before also awarding a bid on road oil.

The commissioners will meet again next Monday at 9 am at the Nowata County Courthouse Annex

Long and Summers Find Success at National Finals

 The team roping duo of Coffeyville's Jake Long and his partner Clint Summers notch another win at the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo.

 Long and Summers have claimed go-round wins for three out of four nights at the NFR in Las Vegas.

Summers moves into first place among headers and Long into first among heelers.

Structure Fire Guts Barn in West Mineral

 A large structure fire late last week in West Mineral leaves a large barn a total loss.

 Fire crews from West Mineral, Columbus, and Lola and Osages Townships responded to a large structure fire last Friday night. The 4,000 square foot barn was engulfed in flames when fire crews arrived on the scene. Crews worked quickly to extinguish the fire since it was located very close to a residence. The barn was destroyed but the house was saved and there were no injuries to either residents or emergency crews.

USD 446 Seeking Certified Teachers


USD 446 is looking for full-time certified teachers for next school year.


The district is currently receiving applications for a high school Industrial Technology teacher for the 2024-25 school year, as well as a Science and Math teacher at Independence Middle School.


Applicants should either hold or be eligible for a valid Kansas teaching license. Those interested in the positions can fill out the online application HERE.


Additional items of business at the December board meeting was a report from Superintendent Jason McAfee, information regarding the January Board Appreciation dinner, and the recognition of board member Melissa Small for her service to the district.


USD 446 meets on the second Monday of each month at 7 p.m. in the Community Room of Independence High School.

New Web Host Approved for South Coffeyville Schools


South Coffeyville Public Schools will soon have a new website host.


At last night's school board meeting, members approved using the company Apptegy as the new host. Superintendent Daryl Pruter says this will result in a better experience for parents and staff who update the website.


The cost for the new web host will be $5,800 a year, with the setup fee being waived if the school signs up this month. In other business, the board discussed the possibility of purchasing a new truck for the ag program. A discussion was also held regarding the school's cell phone policy. Pruter says no changes are needed with the current policy.


Pruter says he doesn't want to enforce a no-tolerance phone policy and thinks some flexibility is acceptable, but also says the current situation requires more consistency between classrooms.

USD 445 Opens Applications to Fill Vacant Position


USD 445 will open up an application process to fill the vacant spot of the seventh board member position. Superintendent Dr. Craig Correll says applications will be due on January 1st and the new member will be approved at the meeting on January 8th.


The candidate will be filling the position left open by the passing of Dr. Jerry Hamm, which has two years left on the term. The board unanimously approved this method for filling the vacancy. In other business, the board heard from High School Principal Travis Stalford on graduation rates and post-secondary success.   

Labette Commission Receives Department Updates


With 2023 coming to an end, the Labette County commissioners heard updates from several of their departments.


County Treasurer Crystal Addis updated the commission on the changes coming to the Kansas license plate. Other updates included Health Department Director Lisa Scott, 9-1-1 Dispatch Director Brandy Scott, Noxious Weed Director Ralph George, Public Works Director Sandy Krider and JJA Director Gina Dolechek.


The commission also approved a contract for a bridge replacement in the county. Jacob McCallie with Edna Volunteer Fire Department spoke to the commission about upgrading radios and radio equipment to improve communication across the county between the departments.   

Kansans To Vote On New License Plate Designs

 Good news for Kansans who are unhappy with the new license plate design.

 Governor Laura Kelly today shared how Kansans will be able to weigh in on the next State of Kansas license plate. Starting today, Kansans can go to to vote for their favorite plate among five designs created by Mammoth Creative Co., a Kansas-based marketing firm, in partnership with Kansas Tourism. Voting will end at 5 pm this Friday.

Kansans can vote on their favorite design as many times as they would like until voting closes on Friday. Votes will gauge support for a specific design, though minor aspects of the winning design may change to ensure compliance with production protocols. The selected plate will be announced next Monday, December 18th .

To vote for your favorite, click here.


Coffeyville Tag Office To Reopen in January

 There's good news for residents of the southern part of Montgomery County.

 After the first of the year, they will no longer have to go to Independence to visit the tag office.

The Coffeyville Tag Office has been closed since September due to a staffing shortage. County Treasurer Nancy Clubine tells the Montgomery County Commission that new staff have been hired and trained, so the tag office in Coffeyville will be reopening on January 2nd.

Clubine reminds residents that the tag office hours in Independence and at the Coffeyville office when it reopens, are from 8am to 4pm. Anyone needing title work will need to arrive before 3pm.

In other business at today's (yesterday's) commission meeting, Public Works director Jim Wright asked the commission to cancel a bid for a pick up truck awarded to Tom Davis Chevrolet in October of 2022 for lack of delivery of the vehicle. Ha also asked the commission to reopen the bid process. The commission directed Wright to notify the dealership via a letter before proceeding. Commissioners also conducted two executive sessions. No action was taken on either.

The next meeting of the Montgomery County Commission will be next Monday at 9am in the lower level of the judicial center in Independence. The meeting is open to the public.

Peck Hears From Constituents On Listening Tour

 State Senator Virgil Peck concludes his listening tour with stops in Cherryvale and Parsons.

 Peck has spent many days in the past two weeks traveling through District 15 to hear what voters are thinking about before the state legislature reconvenes in January. Peck has visited cities in Chautauqua, Elk, Montgomery, and Labette counties. He says he has heard about a lot of topics that voters in southeast Kansas are concerned about.

Peck says he has also heard lot about Medicaid expansion. He calls the proposal the biggest thing Governor Laura Kelly wants from the upcoming legislative session. Peck adds that while he is against the expansion, he is willing to listen to his constituents about why he should vote in favor of the Governor's plan. The Kansas legislature is currently on break and will reconvene on January 8th .

Passenger Rail Expansion Moves Forward in Kansas

 Passenger rail expansion in Kansas is among the projects selected for federal funding.

 The Federal Railroad Administration has selected the extension of the Heartland Flyer passenger rail corridor for inclusion in the Corridor Identification and Development Program.  The Corridor ID Program will provide funding for the development of a Service Development Plan (SDP), which is expected to be completed in spring 2024. In this first cycle of Corridor ID Program awards, $500,000 will go to the development of the Heartland Flyer Corridor SDP. 

The proposed Corridor would connect Amtrak’s existing Heartland Flyer intercity passenger rail service between Fort Worth and Oklahoma City, extending it north to include new station stops in the cities of Edmond, Perry, and Ponca City in Oklahoma, as well as stops in Ark City, Wichita, and Newton in Kansas.  The Heartland Flyer Corridor was discontinued in 1979. The proposed extension would re-connect Oklahoma and Kansas communities north to the national Amtrak network via the Southwest Chief. Senator Jerry Moran says the project will provide a news means of travel and new economic opportunities.

Shipping Holiday Goodies and Treats

 As Christmas draws nearer, many people may be thinking about sending homemade treats as gifts.

 While receiving tasty treats in the mail is an excellent gift, no one wants to receive a box of crumbs, so it's important to consider the types of foods that are being sent. K-State Health, Food Safety, and Nutrition Agent Holly Miner says packing is an important consideration especially with perishable foods.

If the package needs to travel a long way, choose non-perishable foods that do not require refrigeration such as hard candy, pralines, dried fruits and meats, or dehydrated soup and beverage mixes. When packing baked goods, pack each type separately in resealable bags. Before sending, call or text the recipient so they know food is on the way.

Dewey Schools Construction Project Underway

 The $8.2 million Bulldogger bond projects in Dewey,OK, are officially underway.

 A vote in April decided several issues that involved much-needed school improvements. These improvements include building a new roof at Dewey Elementary School and constructing a new parking lot behind the high school gym for student and event parking.

More plans include relocating and constructing a new bus yard and garage. Plans for getting new interior classroom doors and windows at all school sites and the cafeteria are also in place.

On the sports side, Dewey Public Schools are looking to construct a new football and track entrance on the east side of the stadium to include concession stands and restrooms. Plans are also in the works to resurface the track as well.

Deer Causes Two Vehicle Crash in Cherokee County

 A deer is the cause of a weekend car accident near Baxter Springs.

 The crash occurred around 5:15pm yesterday (Sunday) afternoon, as 60 year old Dana Cook of Broken Arrow was traveling southbound on US 69 about 4 miles north of US 166 when she struck a deer crossing the road. The impact caused the deer to move into oncoming traffic where it was struck again by a 2022 Kia Soul driven by 60 year old Allen Bruce of Oswego. Cook sustained minor injuries in the accident and was taken to Mercy Hospital in Joplin for treatment. No one else was injured in the crash.

Area Business Hosts Winter Clothing Drive

 As the end of 2023 approaches, so does the chance of cold weather.

 To help those in need this winter season, Sherwin-Williams in Independence is holding a winter coat drive. Lisa Wilson from the Independence Chamber says this is a good time for people to clean out their closets and help people at the same time.

Items can be dropped off at Sherwin-Williams at 1802 West Main in Independence through next Friday (December 15th). Items will be given to Home Sweet Home Homeless Ministry, Hannah's House, and the Community Access Center.

Chautauqua County Meets with Caney Administrator Regarding Water


Chautauqua County commissioners meet with Caney representatives regarding the current water situation.


County commissioners have voiced concern in recent weeks about Chatauqua County running short on water to perform necessary tasks.


Caney City Administrator Kelley Zellner says that Caney is looking for solutions that wouldn't take water away from the county.


The commissioners also had a conversation with Everlong Captive Consulting Group regarding joining an LLC.


The commission will meet two more times this year, on December 18th and December 29th.

Caney City Officials Say Market Not Closing


 As rumors continue to swirl concerning the Caney Market, city officials say the market is not closing.

 Caney City Administrator Kelley Zellner says a turn in the calendar will bring new and exciting things to the market.

 Zellner says he believes as long as there is a city of Caney, there will be a Caney Market. He invites those interested to check out the Caney Market page on Facebook.

Busy Holiday Weekend in Edna


It was hard to find a parking spot this weekend in downtown Edna.


Crowds lined the street as the parade went through town, and there was no shortage of candy. Led and organized by the Edna Volunteer Fire Department, the parade also featured the Labette County High School Band combined with Junior High students, lots of local organizations and businesses, K-State Research and Extension, Labette County Community College and KGGF to name a few. After the parade, kids met with Santa in the lobby of the Edna Community Building, where a large craft fair also took place. Vendors were on hand selling all kinds of homemade items. The Edna Historical Museum in the old First National Bank building was also open for visitors.

New Christmas Event This Weekend in Coffeyville


A new Christmas event is coming to the area.


“A Coffeyville Christmas” Radio Program will feature 1940s radio theater as locals perform two different radio dramas in front of a live studio audience. The public is welcome to attend the free event this Saturday, which is a fundraiser for the Midland Theater. The show will take place at St. Paul's Lutheran Church at 9th and Spruce Street in Coffeyville this Saturday at 7 p.m. The dramas will be produced exactly as they were originally, including live sound effects. In addition, the show will feature local choir groups and musical talent and will be broadcast live on KGGF AM 690. Admission is free but freewill donations will also be accepted for the Midland Theater and St. Paul's for hosting the event. If you can't make the show this weekend, it will be rebroadcast on KGGF Christmas morning at 8 a.m.

Kansas Hosts Virtual Job Fair On Wednesday

 Job seekers across the state will have the chance to take part in a virtual job fair this week.

 The event is hosted by KansasWorks and runs from 8am to 5pm on Wednesday. The Virtual Statewide Job Fair portal will feature helpful information such as a job seeker training video, a list of participating employers, and channels for attendees to register and log in. Job seekers are encouraged to dress professionally, as employers may request a video interview. Candidates can participate through any digital device. Any individual with a disability may request accommodations by contacting their nearest workforce center at 877-509-6757 prior to the event.

Registration is required to participate. Click here to register.

Local Agencies Receive Grants to Help Children Exposed to Drugs

 Organizations in Howard, Iola, Fredonia, and Pittsburg receive funding from the state to identify and help children exposed to drugs.

 Governor Laura Kelly has announced $2 million in grant to 18 Kansas service agencies from the Kansas Department of Health and Environment and the Kansas Alliance for Drug Endangered Children. Nearly 150,000 Kansas children live in environments where their parent or caregiver uses substances which leaves them at risk of severe neglect, abuse, and developmental delays.

$110,00 went to the Elk County Sheriff's Department in Howard, $130,000 to the Wilson County Health Department in Fredonia, $111,000 for Thrive-Allen County in Iola, and $80,000 to Live Well-Crawford County in Pittsburg.

EPA Visits Miami To Discuss Water In Tar Creek

 The Environmental Protection Agency tells Miami that Tar Creek remains unsafe.

 Representatives from the EPA were in Miami, OK, last night to talk about the water in Tar Creek. The message to residents was that while the water may look clean, it isn't safe for swimming or fishing. The now-clear waters of Tar Creek once ran orange or red due to contamination with lead, zinc, and other heavy metals left by nearby mining operations in the early 20th century.

The city of Miami will be placing cameras along a stretch of Tar Creek where several dams and swimming holes were constructed by residents over the summer. The local activist group Local Environmental Action Demanded or LEAD Agency plans to ask the EPA for more help in cleaning up the site in hopes that Tar Creek water can be usable in the future. But, until that happens, Tar Creek is unsafe for activities like swimming, fishing, or even picnicking along its banks.

Old and New Decorations Light Up Downtown Miami

 Home town Christmas decorations have a special place in the hearts of four state residents and the city of Miami, OK, is no different.

 The city has three, new, large replica Christmas balls decorating the downtown area. Miami Mayor Bless Parker says the decorations have a history in the city.

Parker says the damage to the ornaments was repaired by a local craftsman at a cost of $5,000 apiece. The city is currently raising funds to repair more of the historical decorations damaged in the 2007 flood. Parker says the ornaments hold a special significance for those who grew up in the city of Miami.

Pittsburg Schools Face Brief Lockdown

 A fleeing suspect prompts a school lockdown in Pittsburg.

 According to the Crawford County Sheriff's Office, the pursuit of an armed suspect yesterday caused a soft lockdown for all school buildings in U-S-D 250 in Pittsburg.

The lockdown was in place for less than 10 minutes and ended when the suspect was taken into custody. Parents were notified via email that the lockdown had taken place as a precaitionary measure in response to reprts from local law enforcement agencies.

Cherokee Nation Receives Grant

 Cherokee Nation Career Services is being awarded a $1.4 million grant by the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration to invest in trade training services at the tribe with a focus on women in non-traditional trade training.

 The Public Works and Economic Adjustment Assistant Grant will be used to provide non-traditional employment training and services to traditionally under-served populations of Cherokee Nation citizens with an emphasis on including women, justice-involved persons and those in recovery.

Over the next three years, NET will involve the training of 21 building trade trainees, 21 fiber optics/broadband technician trainees and 30 high-voltage lineman trainees.

This project supports workforce education and skills training activities that are directly connected to the demand for skilled labor in the business community and will result in well-paying quality jobs for Cherokee citizens.

There will be a minimum of 72 Cherokee citizens, who are 18 years of age and older and who live within the Cherokee Nation Reservation, selected as trained participants.


Neodesha Hires Embattled Marion City Administrator

 Neodesha has a new city administrator.

 At their most recent city commission meeting, Neodesha Mayor Devin Johnson announced the hiring of Brogan Jones as the new city administrator.

Jones has been hired at a salary of $90,000 a year, $15,000 more than his former position. Brogan Jones comes to Neodesha after resigning as city administrator in Marion, KS. Jones left his position in Marion following a November 13 council meeting where he faced sharp criticism for his role in the August 11 raid on the offices of the Marion County Record newsroom and the home of Record owner Eric Meyer. At issue was Jones sharing an email from council member Ruth Herbel that included information about a DUI incurred by a local restaurant owner. Herbel said the email was not to be shared, but Jones forwarded the email to the rest of the city council after being told to do so by Mayor David Mayfiled.

The city of Neodesha has been in search of a new city administrator since the departure of Ed Truelove in September. Jones replaces interim administrator Mark McAnarney.


Tulsa Farm Show Continues Today and Tomorrow


Educational opportunities are among some of the highlights at this year's Tulsa Farm Show.


The show at Expo Square's SageNet Center continues today and tomorrow, and Show Manager Scott Guttormson says there are some new events this year.


Some of the seminars available today include a beef cattle market summary and outlook from Oklahoma State Extension Livestock Economic Specialist Dr. Derrell Peel and a forage seminar by Agronomy Specialist Brian Pugh. In addition, over 400,000 square feet of exhibits and vendors are available for visitors to check out.


Photo:  KGGF Farm Director Ron Hays talkjs with News on 6 meteorologist Travis Meyers during KGGF's live broadcast from the Tulsa Farm Show's opening day on Thursday.

Caney Christmas Parade Complete Success


 Hundreds of people lined 4th Street in Caney last night for the annual Christmas parade.

 Seventy one entries, including businesses, churches and civic organizations, and emergency workers tossed candy to children along the route. 
 After the parade, families lined up to have their picture taken with both Santa and the Grinch, while others lined up for tacos or potatoes from the various food trucks lined up and down the street. 
 The parade, sponsored by Skyway Honda, was broadcast live on Facebook and on Sonshine 98.9. If you missed the parade, it is available for viewing on the KGGF Facebook page.

Coffeyville FFA Hosts Middle School Discovery Days


Coffeyville FFA hosts Middle School Discovery Days at Field Kindley High School.


Students got to hear a keynote speech from National FFA Prepared Public Speaking Finalist and SEK FFA District Reporter Tucker Leck, who discussed taking advantage of FFA opportunities and growing skills by taking the harder path of trying new things.


Coffeyville FFA officers and Elk Valley FFA Officers put on a series of workshops for students about communication, SAEs, poultry and livestock judging for the middle school students in attendance. Students also competed in speech and tested their knowledge on food science and plant systems. 

Free Christmas Shop in Elk City on Sunday

 The First Christian Church of Elk City is hosting a Free Christmas Store this Sunday.

 Families and individuals in Montgomery County are invited to stop in a shop for 3 to 5 free items that they can then give as Christmas gifts. Available items are new or gently used. The church is offering hot cocoa and a wrapping station to wrap gifts. No appointment is needed. The Christmas Shop will be open from 1 to 3pm on Sunday at 219 south Montgomery street in Elk City. For more information call 620-627-2424

St. Andrew's Community Christmas Dinner

 Saint Andrew Catholic Church in Independence invites the public to Christmas dinner.

 The Independence Community Christmas Dinner will take place this Sunday and will feature a free turkey dinner with all the trimmings. The entire community is invited to attend, especially those who have no loved ones to share the holiday with. Senior citizens, families, and individuals who would benefit from a free, home-cooked meal are encouraged to attend and share in the spirit of the holiday season. There will also be a free winter clothing give-away and Santa will have toys for all children who attend. The dinner will be held Sunday from 11am to 1pm at the St. Andrew Parish Center at 420 east Myrtle in Independence. Those who know a home-bound person who would like a meal delivered should contact Glenna at 620-330-6916.

Fredonia City Commission Approves Incentive to Return Surveys

 The city of Fredonia will give residents an incentive to complete and return the Lead Service Line Survey from the Kansas Department of Health and Environment.

 At last night's (Wednesday night's) city commission meeting, commissioners discussed ways to encourage residents to return their surveys. City Administrator Wesley Young says it's in the best interests of residents to complete the forms.

Young asked the commission to approve an incentive to encourage Fredonia residents to complete and return their surveys.

The commission approved the $100 drawing incentive by a unanimous vote. Also on the agenda for last night's meeting was the consideration of a new rate agreement with Evergy. The commission took no action on that measure. Commissioners did approve a proposal to create a level payment plan for city utility customers for electricity. Enrollment for that plan will open in February and March while the payment plans will begin in May.


Canadian Company Announces New Facility in Montgomery County

 A Canadian company announces plans to build a new facility in Montgomery County just south of Cherryvale.

 The company, Azure 2023, Inc., has announced plans to build a $900 million industrial project southeast of the intersection of US 169-160, near the new Bartlett soy bean plant. According to the Montgomery County Chronicle, the company plans to seek the issuance of $900 million in industrial revenue bonds from Montgomery County. Repayment of those bonds will come from the private corporation, and not from local taxpayers. This project would be the single largest industrial project in the history of Montgomery county and also places it in the top five projects in the state of Kansas.

Officials from the company and from Bartlett plan to reveal more details at a public hearing of the Montgomery County Commission slated for December 18th.

Man Succumbs To Injuries 16 Days After Crash

 A Girard man dies from injuries sustained in a November car accident.

 84 year old Jerry Jones of Girard was involved in a 2 vehicle accident on November 19 just north of Pittsburg. In the accident, Jones failed to yield at an intersection and was struck by another vehicle. He was taken to Ascension Via Christi in Pittsburg for treatment, but succumbed to his injuries earlier this week. The two occupants of the other vehicle both received serious injuries in the accident.

Fatal Car Crash in Chautauqua County

 A single vehicle crash in Chautauqua County leaves one man dead.

 The accident occurred around 5:30 yesterday, when 41 year old Eric Mertes of Chautauqua was driving eastbound on US 166 near Road 14 southwest of Sedan. Mertes was driving a 2012 Ford Mustang when his vehicle went off the roadway and struck a culvert. The vehicle went airborne and overturned across Road 14. Mertes was pronounced dead at the scene. He was not wearing a seat belt at the time of the accident.

Road Closure North of Caney

 A tractor-trailer rollover causes road closures.

 A witness to the accident says it happened just north of Caney.

The Montgomery County Rural Fire Department says The cloverleaf ramp for US-166 West/US-75 Norths is closed but the US-166 West exit from the north and the south bound US-75 exit is still open. Drivers needing to travel in that area should find an alternate route.

Wind Advisory in Effect Today


Today will be a windy day in the four states.


The National Weather Service has issued a wind advisory today from 10 a.m. through 6 p.m. for southeast Kansas, northeast Oklahoma and northwest Arkansas. Southwest Missouri is also included in the advisory from 9 a.m. through midnight. South winds between 25 and 30 miles per hour are expected with gusts up to 45 possible. Winds may make driving high-profile vehicles difficult. Extra attention to cross winds may be required on bridges and overpasses.

Tulsa Farm Show Starts Today


The Tulsa Farm Show kicks off today at Expo Square's SageNet Center.


The show is in its 30th year and is considered Oklahoma’s largest indoor farm show with over 400,000 square feet of exhibits. More than 350 companies will be featuring a full line of displays, including tractors, sprayers, tillage, harvest equipment, cattle management products and more. KGGF Farm Director Ron Hays will be broadcasting live from the show today during the regular midday farm shows at 11:30 and 12:30. The Tulsa Farm Show will continue through Saturday.

Neodesha FD Delivering Presents with Santa


The Neodesha Fire Department will be helping Santa deliver presents on one of their fire trucks.


Starting Wednesday, December 20th through Christmas Eve at noon, Neodesha FD will take in presents to be delivered to children on Christmas Eve with Santa in the fire truck. Presents brought in need to be wrapped and clearly labeled with the child's first and last name and the address of the home so they can properly deliver them If there are multiple presents in a bag for multiple children all of the presents need to be properly marked so they don't get mixed up.


Call Neodesha FD at (620)325-2642 for any questions about the event. They will also be accepting donations for the volunteer equipment fund so they can continue supporting their volunteer firefighters.


Water Leak Causes Temporary Outage in Fredonia

 Fredonia city crews will be repairing a water leak today.

 Due to the repair work, there will be an interruption of water service starting around 11am in the 100 and 200 blocks of S. 4th Street. The water outage will be for approximately two hours. Crews will be working to restore service as quickly as possible.

Sedan Christmas Parade This Saturday

 Christmas in the Hollow continues this weekend in Sedan.

 Saturday night the city of Sedan will enjoy some Christmas spirit with the annual Parade of Lights. Diane Clanton from the Sedan Chamber says the parade is an event that brings the community together.

The parade begins at 6:30pm in downtown Sedan. Clanton says after the parade, everyone is invited to enjoy the light displays.

There will also be pictures with Santa and hot cocoa and cider.

Peck Continues Listening Tour

 State Senator Virgil Peck continues his listening tour across southeast Kansas tomorrow.

 The Havana Republican will be at the library in St Paul tomorrow at 1pm, then at Brickhaus in Erie at 2, followed by Cardinal Drug in Chanute at 3:30.

Peck says the listening helps him know what's on the minds of voters. He will be joined by area state representatives as he makes stops in their districts. Peck's tour concludes on Saturday with stops in Cherryvale and Parsons.

Caney Christmas Parade Tomorrow Night

 Christmas leaps into the spotlight tomorrow night in Caney.

 The Caney Christmas Parade happens tomorrow night at 7pm and there's lots of other holiday fun to be as well. Coyote Tacos and Tate's Tater Truck will be set up at 4th and Spring streets. For the younger parade goers, there will be a petting zoo between RCB Bank and the Little White School House from 6:30 to 8:30. there will also be free cookies, hot dogs, water, and popcorn courtesy of Pretty Baked starting at 6:30. City Hall will have hot cocoa and coffee available during the parade and Fellowship Regional Church will have free cookies, cocoa, and coffee.

The Caney Christmas Parade will also be broadcast live on Sunshine 98.9 KQQF and on Facebook live.

Sedan City Council Approves Contract for Trash Pick Up

 After lengthy deliberation and much discussion, the Sedan City Council approves a new contract for trash service in the city.

 Sedan has been in search of new trash service since Chautauqua County announced it would end the service effective at the end of this month. At issue has been which service the city would choose. At yesterday's (Tuesday's) city council meeting, there was still some disagreement about whether the city would pick Waste Connections of Bartlesville or County Wide Refuse of Moline. Council member Adam Clark says he has doubts about Waste Connections.

However, Mayor Jack Warren voiced the thoughts of the other members of the council

Clark was the lone “no” vote when the Council voted 5 to 1 to approve a 5 year contract with Waste Connections.

Other business before the Council included approval of a malt beverage license for One Stop and approval of a new member of the Sedan Library Board.


Good Samaritan Stops To Help at Accident; Causes Second Crash

 Authorities in Jasper County, Missouri, respond to two crashes at the same location at nearly the same time.

 Just before 8am yesterday (Tuesday) an SUV traveling south on Highway D near Oronogo, Missouri, left the roadway, and over-corrected. The vehicle then overturned. A passerby stopped to help, but forgot to put their own vehicle in park. That vehicle was then struck by another.

Fortunately, no one was injured in either accident.

Semi Overturns in Independence

  Local first responders answer call of an over turned semi.

 Yesterday morning around 11:30 AM, the Montgomery County Rural Fire along with Independence Kansas Fire & EMS and Montgomery County Sheriff's Office were called to the an area on Oak Street, just east of Peter Pan Road for an overturned semi. Units were on scene for about 4 1/2 hours while the fuel and oil spill was contained and cleaned up and the semi was removed. No injuries were reported and the road was opened back up around 3 PM. Also on scene was Montgomery County, Kansas Public Works, and Montgomery County KS Environmental Health and Zoning.

Baxter Springs Police Respond To Rumors

 The Baxter Springs Police Department tells residents that they are under police protection.

 In a Facebook post made yesterday (Tuesday), the department addressed rumors that there was 24 hour police coverage in the city. The post stated that this rumor was not true and that there is an officer on duty 24 hours a day to serve the people of Baxter Springs. The post went on to explain that the Baxter Springs Police do contract their dispatch services through the Cherokee County Sheriff's office and that they have a close working relationship with that Department. Residents with questions ro concerns should contact Police Chief Brian Henderson at 620-856-2146

Former Bartlesville Teacher Sentenced to Jail

 A former Bartlesville High School teacher has pleaded guilty to providing alcohol to students and distributing a controlled dangerous substance within 2,000 feet of a park or school.

 Trey Cabler was originally scheduled for jury trial in September, but took a plea deal on Friday.

In 2022, a minor female student alleged that Cabler bought her alcohol on multiple occasions. A second victim claimed that Cabler repeatedly texted her to come over to his apartment to use cocaine. She came to the residence and met Cabler outside where he gave her a half-gram of cocaine. She declined to enter the residence out of fear for her safety.

Following Friday’s plea deal, Cabler will spend 75 days in the Washington County jail and will also have a five year suspended sentence. The sentence prevents Cabler from having contact with the victims or any former Bartlesville Public Schools student. He will be supervised by community sentencing.

The conviction also prevents Cabler from ever holding a teaching license in Oklahoma.


Accident Leaves One Injured Near Parsons

 A two vehicle accident in Neosho County leaves one man with serious injuries.

 Just before 3pm yesterday afternoon, a 2020 Ford F350 driven by 53 year old Calvin Kendall of Erie was driving northbound on US 59 about 9 miles north of Parsons. Kendall slowed to make a left turn when 51 year old Robert Hanson of Sugar Creek, Missouri, attempted to pass. Hanson's 2015 Jeep Wrangler then struck the F 350. Hanson sustained serious injuries and was taken to Freeman West Hospital in Joplin for treatment. Kendall and his passenger, 50 year old Andrew Eck of Redfield, were both uninjured. All three men were wearing seatbelts at the time of the accident.

Hog and Pig Surveys Out


The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service wants to hear from pork producers. NASS is contacting producers for the December Hogs and Pigs Survey. This end-of-year survey is the most comprehensive gathering of quarterly data on market hog and breeding stock inventories as well as pig crop and farrowing intentions in every state. Kansas State Statistician Doug Bounds says there were 74.3 million hogs and pigs in the U.S. according to the most recent report from September. Bounds says the December survey will provide important indicators of any industry change. Operations selected for this survey should have already received a questionnaire in the mail. The information gathered will be used by all sectors of the industry including producers themselves to make timely business decisions. The report will be released on December 22nd.

Moran Introduces Legislation To Help Rural Hospitals

 A Kansas Senator introduces legislation aimed at improving emergency medical care in rural communities.

 Senator Jerry Moran has introduced the Rural Emergency Hospital Adjustment Act that would allow previously closed rural hospitals to potentially re-open. Those hospitals could also apply for the Rural Emergency Hospital designation if they can demonstrate they met all eligibility requirements between January 1, 2015 and December 27, 2020.

The R-E-H designation was created as part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 to enable certain hospitals to convert to the new Medicare provider designation. This designation helps rural hospitals to continue operating with limited services rather than closing. Currently, hospitals are only eligible for the designation if they met the requirements when the legislation was signed into law on December 27, 2020.

Moran says that access to outpatient and emergency services often determines if a rural community can survive.

More than 100 rural hospitals have closed since 2015.

Caney Water Solution Discussions Continue


 Temporary and long term water solutions continue to be the main topic of discussion during regular session meetings of the Caney City Council.

 City Administrator Kelley Zellner says water loss through leaks in pipes and in the water plant continue to be fixed, leading to a 15% water loss reduction in a short amount of time, from 41% to 26%.

 Zellner says the biggest obstacle facing the town is older layers of pipe that weren't removed when new pipes were laid.

 Zellner says removing the old pipe should help water loss rates to dip below the 20% mark.

 Weekly meetings with state and federal officials continue, with discussions on getting water to the town on a short and long term basis. The discussions also include available grant funding, and possible forgiveness of some debt occurred by the current water system.

 Also discussed was the Caney Market. A transfer of up to 50-thousand dollars was approved by the council to balance the budget of the market. Zellner says the market will revamp their deli menu at the beginning of 2024, and with product requested by market users now in stock, he thinks the market will have a very good year next year.

Elk County Sheriff's Office Makes Arrest in Burglary Case

 Two suspects have been arrested in Elk County in connection to a series of burglaries that have plagued rural areas of the county over the past few months.

 The two suspects face a number of charges, including felony burglary, felony theft, Aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, criminal trespassing, and felony criminal damage to property.

Elk County Sheriff John Walker says his office appreciates the work done by the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office and the Chautauqua County Sheriff’s Office for their help on the investigation.

The investigation is still ongoing and Walker says more information, including the names of the suspects, will be released at a later date.

Cherokee County Sheriff Arrests Man on Child Pornography Charges

 A Columbus man has been arrested on allegations of sexual exploitation of a child and child pornography.
 22 year old Jacob Major was arrested by Cherokee County Deputies last Thursday. The investigation into Major's online activities began in March 2021.  Prosecutors have charged him with four counts of Aggravated Internet Trading in Child Pornography and six counts of Sexual Exploitation of a Child.


Miami Men Face Federal Charges in Molotov Cocktail Attack

 Two Miami men face charges of arson and possession of an unregistered destructive device after allegedly throwing Molotov cocktails at the Ottawa County, Oklahoma, Sheriff's office last weekend.

 Those charges were filed against Emillio Gallardo and Dakota Johns in federal court, in the US District Court of the Northern District of Oklahoma.

Security footage shows the suspects walking up to the Sheriff's office around midnight on Saturday night. The pair attempted to ignite the bottles they were carrying and throw them at the building. Authorities say the devices broke but failed to fully ignite.

The Sheriff's office also houses the Ottawa County Jail and there were staff and inmates in the building at the time the incident occurred.

The ATF and FBI are also investigating.

(Miami Area Residents Invited to Participate In Angel of Hope Memorial

 G.A.R. Cemetery in Miami invites the public to honor loved ones at the Angel of Hope.

 The G.A.R. Cemetery management and staff encourage anyone interested in participating in the Angel of Hope memorial to come out to the Angel statue and remember their loved one tomorrow night at 7p.m.

G.A.R. Cemetery will not be hosting a special ceremony this year, but loved ones are encouraged to participate in the nationally recognized memorial event by visiting the Angel of Hope.

G.A.R. Cemetery’s Angel of Hope will be illuminated, and there will be candles leading up to the Angel for those wishing to honor and remember a loved one.

With more than 150 angels across the United States, the Angel of Hope is a memorial with a national community as well as a local one. The first angel was erected in Salt Lake City, Utah, in 1994. It was inspired by the book and hit movie The Christmas Box by Richard Paul Evans. In the story, a woman mourns the loss of her child at the base of an angel monument. Since then, communities have recognized the need for a quiet and healing place where people can remember lost loved ones. The G-A-R cemetery is located at 2801 North Main Street in Miami.

Dewey City Council Hears Police Department Update

 The Dewey City Council and Public Works Authority met last night for their first of two regular monthly meetings, and both meetings wrapped up quickly.

 For the City Council, the only agenda item was an update from the police department given by Dewey Police  Jimmy Grey says his department has made some needed improvements with grant money.

Grey also informed the council about the number of calls the police department has done.

The Dewey City Council and Public Works Authority will meet again on December 18th for their last meeting of the year.

Cherokee Nation to Celebrate Wilma Mankiller Barbie Today


The Cherokee Nation will celebrate the Cherokee Nation's first female chief today.


Wilma Mankiller served as the first female chief of a major Native American tribe and inspired a Barbie Doll's creation in her honor. The doll is part of the company's Inspiring Women Series. The celebration is a tribute to the legacy of Mankiller and her impact on the tribe, Indian Country, as a humanitarian, and advocate of women’s rights. The event in Tahlequah is open to the public and will be live-streamed on Cherokee Nation YouTube and Facebook.


Not all Cherokee Nation citizens are embracing the idea of honoring Mankiller with a doll. Some Cherokees say she was known for her humility and would not have appreciated a doll with her likeness.


The doll appears to be popular, though, because due to high demand and back order for dolls, there will not be Barbies for sale at the event, but keepsake cut-outs of the doll will be available.

Duke Mason Concert Raises Over $3000 for Parsons Shop with a Cop


The Parsons Police Department raises over $3,000 during the Duke Mason Concert for their Shop with a Cop Program.


The $3,200 in donations during the concert brings the total contributions for the Shop with a Cop Program to over $5,000. The Duke Mason Concert on Saturday at the Parsons Municipal Auditorium proved to be a success, drawing a crowd to support the community's children during the holiday season. The event featured Duke Mason's signature blend of musical talent, captivating performances and a commitment to community engagement.


PPD's Shop with a Cop Program partners with USD 503 to help build positive relationships between law enforcement officers and local youth while also providing them with a holiday shopping experience. Chief Robert Spinks says they are extremely grateful for the overwhelming support they received during the Duke Mason Concert. He says this generosity of the community and the success of this event will make a significant impact on their Shop with a Cop Program, allowing them to bring joy to even more children in need.

Peck Takes Over as Chair of the Ag Committee


When the Kansas Legislature returns to Topeka to start the 2024 Session there will be a new chair of the Ag committee.


Senator Virgil Peck, who represents Senate District 15, will take over in the new role as Chairman of the Senate Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee on January 8th. This comes after the previous chairman, Dan Kerschen, asked to be relieved from the position. Senate President Ty Masterson, who tapped Senator Peck to fill the position, says he wants to thank Senator Kerschen for his leadership, statesmanship, and graciousness in handing the gavel to Senator Peck ensuring this crucial committee remains in good hands in the future with a seamless transition.


Senator Peck says of all the committees he's served on during his time in the House and Senate, the Agriculture Committee is one he truly enjoys. He says he is not in production agriculture, but he's lived in rural Kansas his whole life and fully understands the importance of agriculture to the Kansas economy.

Accident at HWY 160 and 101 Closes Road


An accident has closed parts of two Kansas highways in Southeast Kansas.


According to KanDrive, Highway 160 in both directions, between US 169, six miles east of Independence, and Highway 101, two miles east of Mound Valley, is closed due to a crash.


We will have more updates as they are available.

A Crystal Shop Opens up in Independence


A new and unique business opens in Independence.


Stone and Sage Crystals opened in April of this year and recently celebrated their ribbon cutting with the Independence Chamber of Commerce. Owner Larin Tucker says they offer a diverse range of products and services, catering to the varied interests of the community.


She says they also have an event space that can be rented out and they offer classes including Broomstick Making and Crystals 101. Stone and Sage is located at 216 N Penn Ave in Independence. For more information, you can follow their Facebook page at Stone & Sage Crystals.


This is a paid advertisement

Montgomery County Commission Meets

 Montgomery County has a new community survey coming out soon.

 Director of human Resources Ben Brubaker says the county wants to get the survey to as many residents as possible in order to get feedback.

Brubaker says the purpose of the survey is to understand what residents want from their county government.

In other business at today's commission meeting, commissioners heard an update from Henry Schmidt with the Council on Aging as well as an update on cyber security from Jason Clubine. The Montgomery County Commission meets every Monday at 9am in the basement of the Judicial Center in Independence.

Self Care During The Holidays

 Cold and flue season is well underway and that means its time to think about ways to boost the immune system to try and stay healthy.

 Dr Michael Garko says that our immune system can change as we get older.

There are steps that can help boost immune health. The Center for Disease Control suggests a focus on eating a balanced diet that includes fresh fruit and vegetables. Practicing good hygiene and hand-washing to reduce the transmission of germs, and reducing stress. Garko says a good way to reduce stress is getting enough sleep.

Other ways to deal with stress include relaxing activities such as meditating, listening to music, or writing in a journal. Physical activity is another strategy to manage stress and may also reduce the risk of some chronic diseases that can weaken your immune system. However, even by doing all of those things, you can still catch the flu, although your illness may not last as long and you may not feel as bad.

Independence Removes Utility Drop Box

 The city of Independence wants residents to know that the utility payment drop box located on west Laurel will be removed on Friday.

 Residents are asked to use the drop box in the semi-circle drive at Memorial Hall, pay in person, over the phone, or online instead starting on Friday.

Saturday Night Blaze Leaves Jasper County Home Severely Damaged

 A home in rural Jasper County, Missouri, suffers extensive damage after a weekend fire.

 Just after 6pm on Saturday night, fire crews were dispatched to a home north east of Galena near the Kansas-Missouri border. Crews from the Carl Junction Fire Department, the Jasper county Sheriff's Department, Webb City Fire, and METS ambulance responded to the blaze.

The two occupants of the house made it out safely though their pets were unable to escape the fire and smoke. The Red Cross has been requested to assist the couple. Preliminary reports indicate that the fire was accidental.

Kansas Food Bank To Visit Sedan

 The Kansas Food Bank brings its mobile pantry to Sedan this week.

 The Food Bank will be at the Chautauqua County Fairgrounds in Sedan on Wednesday from 10 to 11 am or as long as supplies last. Anyone ion need of food assistance is encouraged to attend. Guests will be required to check in with their address and the number of people in their household. For more information, contact the Kansas Food Bank at 316-265-3663

Picher, OK, Holds First Christmas Parade in 10 Years

 Traffic on US 69 just south of the Kansas-Oklahoma border was halted on Saturday.

 The reason? The city of Picher, Oklahoma held a Christmas parade.

While many other towns held parades over the weekend, Picher is unique because the town hasn't existed since 2013. Picher is part of the Tar Creek Superfund site where run-off from lead and zinc mining in the area polluted the area's water wells and soil leaving what the Environmental Protection Agency calls one of the most toxic areas in the United States.

Former residents gathered Saturday for the 30 minute parade through the 3 blocks of downtown Picher to focus on the future instead of the past. The parade included floats from area businesses, area police and fire departments, marching bands from Quapaw High School and the NEO A &M College, and, of course, Santa Claus.

Kansas November Total Tax Collections Below Estimate


 The State of Kansas ends November with total tax collections below estimates.

 Total collections end at just over $649.5 million, 2.1%, below the estimate, but up 1.1% from November 2022.

 Individual income tax collections were $291.8 million, 3.5%, below the estimate, and down 0.2% from November of last year. Corporate income tax collections were $35.5 million, 41.5%, higher than the estimate and up 168% from November last year.

 Combined retail sales and compensating use tax receipts were $291 million, 4.7%, below estimate and down 4.5%, from November 2022.

 Complete November 2023 revenue numbers are available here.

Coffeyville Christmas Parade Opens Holiday Season


It was season's greetings all evening in downtown Coffeyville, with the annual Christmas Parade drawing a large crowd.


KGGF was able to broadcast live from the parade, courtesy of Roman's Chevrolet in Independence, H&R Block in Coffeyville, Dusty's Unlock Service in Coffeyville, NDB of Coffeyville, and State Farm Insurance agent Harold Mann in Coffeyville.


A few of the attractions to see were the Coffeyville Municipal Band, Coffeyville Community College band and cheerleaders, Textron Aviation, the Coffeyville Jeepers, and Miss Rodeo Oklahoma Teen Emma Couch.


Santa made an appearance for the grand finale with the City of Coffeyville to conclude this year's parade.


A link to watch the Coffeyville Christmas Parade can be found here.

Two Indy Men Arrested on Theft Charges


Two Independence men are arrested on theft charges after being caught on camera.


Montgomery County dispatch received a call from a property owner south of Independence saying they were watching on camera two men removing items from their property. Deputies responded to the location and saw two men loading scrap metal into the bed of a truck. The men were identified as Anthony Rodgers and Jesus Barraza-Aris.


Both were transported to the Montgomery County Department of Corrections. Rogers is facing charges of criminal trespassing and theft and Barraza-Aris is facing charges of criminal trespassing, theft and possession of methamphetamine.

Chautauqua County Lifts Burn Ban

 Chautauqua County Emergency Management has lifted the county-wide burn ban that has been in place since September 1st .

 The ban was initially put in place due to extremely dry conditions and a lack of sufficient firefighting water. Those who wish to conduct an outdoor burn are still subject to county regulations under county ordinance 2019-1. The ordinance can be found here.

Neodesha City Commission Meets

 The City of Neodesha has a new City Administrator.

 At yesterday's city commission meeting, Mayor Devin Johnson announced that the city had decided to hire Brogan Jones to fill the position. Johnson says the commission was impressed by Jones' perspective on the job.

Johnson says the commission is excited to add Jones to the team.

Jones will replace interim city administrator Mark McAnarney who has been serving in the position since September. In other business at yesterday's meeting, commissioners approved spending aas much as $147,000 to purchase a new ambulance. The next Neodesha City commission meeting will be on December 13th

Senator Virgil Peck On December Listening Tour

 State Senator Virgil Peck will be visiting cities in Senate District 15 during the next week, conducting a listening tour.

 Peck says the listening tour helps him know what is on the minds of his constituents. State Representative Doug Blex will join Peck for several of his tour stops today and Monday. Blex says it a good opportunity for voters to voice their opinions.

Peck begins his tour today in Independence and Coffeyville. He will be in the Independence City Commission Room at 120 North 6th at 1:30 today and then in the Coffeyville Commission Room at 102 west 7th from 4 to 5 today. In addition to Blex, Peck will be joined by state representatives Ron Bryce, Dan Goddard, Ken Collins, and Mike Houser as he stops in their districts.


Tour Stops:

December 1st

Independence – City Commission Room, 120 N. 6th, 2:30–3:30

Coffeyville – City Commission Room, 102 W. 7th, 4:00–5:00


December 2nd

Altamont – Sr. Citizen Center, 414 S. Huston, 9:00–10:00

Oswego – Cup of Grace, 622 6th St. 10:15–11:15

Chetopa – City Hall, 618 N. 11th, 11:30–12:30


December 4th

Caney – City Council Chambers, 100 W. 4th, 8:45–9:30

Moline – Swinging Bridge Café, 304 Walnut St., 10:15–11:00

Howard – Cox Building, 100 W. Washington St. 11:15–12:15

Sedan – Senior Citizen Center, 124 E. Main St., 1:00–2:00

Cedar Vale – Hilltop Café, 1104 Walnut St., 2:30–3:30


December 7th

St. Paul – Library, 717 Central St., 1:00–1:45

Erie – Brickhaus, 202 N. Main, 2:00–3:00

Chanute – Cardinal Drug, 103 E. Main, 3:30–4:30


December 9th

Cherryvale – City Council Room, 123 W. Main, 9:00–10:00

Parsons – Parsons Area Community Foundation, 1810 Main St., 10:30–11:30


KBI Makes Major Drug Seizure

The Kansas Bureau of Investigation’s (KBI) Joint Fentanyl Impact Team announces a major seizure of illegal drugs.

On Wednesday, authorities received intelligence about the movement of illicit drugs into Kansas. Yesterday, the KBI, Sedgwick County Sheriff’s Office, Homeland Security Investigations, and Drug Enforcement Administration executed four search warrants at two residences in south Wichita and one residence in northwest Wichita. As a result of the investigation around 60,000 fentanyl pills, 59 pounds of methamphetamine, and 4.2 pounds of fentanyl powder were seized. 

No arrests have currently been made. The cases will be presented to county and federal prosecutors for consideration of charges. The investigation is ongoing.

Weekend Holiday Events in Fredonia

 There's lots of holiday fun to be had this weekend in Fredonia.

 The community Christmas Tree will be set up on the downtown square on Saturday. Area residents are invited to add an ornament to the tree. Kids can make decorations tomorrow beginning at 5pm. There will be ornament templates available near the bandstand.

From 9 to noon tomorrow, area kids can go to Santa's Gift Shop and pick out gifts for their parents, which will be gift wrapped while they chat with Santa. The gift shop will be located at the Church of Christ at 600 North 15th

The Christmas Parade happens tomorrow night at 6pm. On Sunday, enjoy the sounds of the season with the concert “Sounds of Christmas” hosted by the First United Methodist Church.

Kansas Trout Season Begins Today

 Kansas anglers prepare for a new trout season.

 Trout season in Kansas begins today and runs through March 31st . Le Clere Lake in Coffeyville has been stocked with 315 rainbow trout, for a total of 423 pounds of fish. Kansas residents ages 16 to 74 and non residents 16 or older wishing to fish will need a valid fishing license and a Trout Permit. Kids 15 or younger only need a Youth Trout Permit.

Trout permits available here.



Coffeyville Police and Fire Collect Items For Those In Need

 Officers from the Coffeyville Police and Fire Departments will be at Walmart tomorrow to collect items for area residents in need this holiday season.

 Officers and Firefighters will be accepting food, toys, clothing, personal hygiene items, and monetary donations. Personal items they are looking for include shoes, toothpaste, deodorant, and foundation makeup. All donations are tax deductible.

Last year's drive helped 79 kids and 34 families.

Officers will be at the Coffeyville Walmart from 10 to 4 tomorrow.

Bartlesville Teen Charged in Weekend Shooting

 A Bartlesville teen faces charges in a weekend shooting.

 The Bartlesville teen that was involved in the shooting on Windsor Way over the weekend appeared in Washington County Court yesterday afternoon. 15-year-old Kale Casey appeared in person and is being charged as a youthful offender on the charge of shooting with intent to kill.

Casey was also the alleged victim in the Windsor Way armed robbery that occurred on October 24th . According to an affidavit, the victim arrived at Casey’s house and was invited inside. The victim later would leave but then returned to Casey’s home.

Casey then allegedly used a semiautomatic handgun to shoot into the vehicle, striking the victim in the face. There were multiple witnesses that identified Casey as the shooter. Casey was given a $100,000 bond and his next court date is set for December 15th.

Fatality Crash in Neosho County

 One man is dead after a head-on collision in Neosho County.

 68 year old Danny Romine of Chanute was traveling eastbound on K39 just East of Chanute just after 10pm last night, when his vehicle – a 2007 Toyota Carolla – crossed the center line. It struck a 2020 Freightliner semi truck driven by 58 year old Donald Blair of Freedon, Indiana. Romine was pronounced dead at the scene, while Blair was uninjured.

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