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Your World Today - January 15, 2010

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Thursday evening at the Salem City Hall Auditorium before a crowd of about 60 citizens, Missouri State Auditor Susan Montee presented a report of the state audit of the City of Salem. The report represented findings and discussed recommendations made to the city by State Auditor Montee and members of her staff. She also answered questions about the audit report and their findings from those in attendance. Montee explained that there were no significant problems or issues found including no missing money or accounting problems. The report explained eleven separate findings and recommendations, which include the city transferring substantial amount from the Electric Fund to the General Fund without adequate justification. In January 2000, the Electric Reserve Fund had a balance of approximately $1.7 million but as of June 2009, the fund balance had decreased to only $100,681. Another finding was that bids were not solicited or documented for several purchases between July 2007 and December 2008. The report indicated that the city had not updated the written agreement with Dent County and the County Collector since 2000 for the preparation of the city’s property tax books and the collection of city and library property taxes. The city has also owes Dent County $28,477 for the use of the jail due to a disagreement on billing for the boarding of prisoners. Montee recommended the city get lease agreements with the Salem TCRC and the Salem Fitness Center, the two tenants at the Salem Freedom Activity Center, even though neither pays rent at this time. She recommends that the city implement written vehicle policies and effective monitoring procedures regarding use of its 49 vehicles. Montee also stated the city needs to establish policies to ensure aviation fuel prices are set at a levy to cover costs incurred by the city airport, and she also recommended that the city pass an ordinance to establish incentive payments to full-time employees and establish procedures for employee clothing allowances and time cards. A recommendation was also made for applicable matters discussed in and approved in closed session of being properly reported in the meetings minutes. Montee further stated that the city has not prepared a financial analysis of the cost/benefit of splitting the positions of Director of Public Works and City Engineer. Other findings in the audit report related to real estate transactions, accounting/internal controls, city airport, traffic tickets and bonds, and capital assets. The audit will cost the city of Salem about $30,000. All reports are available on the State Auditors website at www.auditor.mo.gov.

The Dent County Commissioners met for their regular meeting at the Dent County Courthouse Thursday morning. Commissioner Gary Larson was not in attendance at the meeting after breaking his leg earlier in the week. Giving the road report was District Two Road and Bridge Supervisor Charlie Malone. Malone reported that the workers would be repairing a broken foot on the snowplow that fits on truck #114. He said that a work crew would be servicing truck #65 and another would be doing the 500-hour service on grader #27. Malone said that workers will be removing the snow equipment off of truck #114 and #116. District 1 Commissioner Dennis Purcell stated that the road crew was going to add rock and grade Dent County Road 6020, and cut brush on Dent County Roads 5013 and 5070. He also said that the road crews would be checking and cleaning out culverts. Presiding Commissioner Darrell Skiles said that the commission completed the tentative budget for the county after a special meeting Tuesday. Dent County Clerk Angie Curley reported that the tentative 2010 budget is now available to the public if they want a copy, and it can found in her office. She said that the budget hearing would be held Monday, January 25th at 7:00 at the Dent County Judicial building in the courtroom and that meeting is open to the public. The commissioners also voted to approve renewing the contract with the Salem TCRC to continue to provide rural addressing services for the county for $12,000 a year plus software expenses of $1,500. At the last meeting, Matt Lloyd of Fabick and Company came in to discuss the CAT front loader rental agreement, but the commission reached no decision. Jim Williams with L & B Electronics came in to discuss the re-loading Road and Bridge Department repeaters to a higher point at an estimated cost of $4,000 and again, no decision was made by the commission. Tim Van Hatten with the 2010 Road Rally came in to discuss this year’s rally that will be held February 26th and 27th. There will be not be a meeting on Monday because of Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday and the next meeting will be Thursday at 9:00 at the courthouse. It is open to the public.

Sports [TOP]

Jennifer Herndon scored 17 points as the Salem Lady Tigers beat Willow Springs, 34-24. The Lady Tigers move to 3-0 in the SCA and 9-5 overall. They will be at Owensville next Tuesday.

The Salem Boys Basketball Tigers will open their SCA schedule tonight as they will be in Houston to face the Tigers. You can hear the game on KSMO Radio and online at ksmoradio.com. Salem is 3-8 on the year.

The City of Salem Winter Youth Basketball Program is just around the corner. Sign-ups will be held today from 4:00 to 6:00. All sign-ups will be held in the front lobby of the Salem Freedom Activity Center (formerly the National Guard Armory.) This program is for all boys and girls that are currently enrolled in the 1st-6th grades. Sign-ups will be held again next Thursday, Friday and Saturday. The cost is $15.00 per child. For any additional information, please contact Greg Nash at the City of Salem Parks & Rec. Dept. at 729-6290.

Chris Mason stopped 19 shots for his first shutout of the season, as St. Louis clipped Minnesota, 1-0, at Scottrade Center. T.J. Oshie provided the lone score for the Blues, who have won three in a row. The Blues will host the New York Rangers Saturday night and you can hear the game on KSMO at 7:00.

The Missouri Tigers will travel to Oklahoma to face the Sooners tomorrow starting at 11:30 in a key Big 12 matchup. Missouri is 14-3 overall heading into the game and 2-0 in the Big 12 Conference. You can hear the game on KSMO Radio.

The Cardinals have added some depth to their Minor League rotation with an intriguing signing. Knuckleballing right-hander Charlie Zink has agreed to a Minor League deal with St. Louis. Zink, 30, has been in the Red Sox organization since 2002. He has made one Major League start, in 2008. He was once regarded as one of the Boston organization's better prospects.

Obituaries   [TOP]

Funeral services for James “Jim” Brand of Steelville, age 79, will be held today at 11:00 at the Britton-Bennett Funeral Home in Steelville. Interment will be in the Pleasant Point Cemetery.

Funeral services for Julia Mae Dotson of Steelville, age 89, will be held today at 2:00 at the Britton-Bennett Funeral Home in Steelville. Interment will be in the Cedar Grove Cemetery in Salem.

Funeral services for Olive Ruetz of Steelville, age 94, will be held Saturday at 1:00 at the Britton-Bennett Funeral Home in Steelville. Visitation will be from 11:00 until service time. Interment will be in the Steelville Cemetery.

Funeral services for Frederick W. Rueffel III of Vichy, age 95, will be held Saturday at 11:00 at the First Pentecostal Church in Vichy. Visitation will be Friday from 5:00 to 7:00 at the church. All the arrangement are under the direction of the James and Gahr Mortuary in Rolla. Memorials may be made to the First Pentecostal Church in Vichy.

Funeral services for Arlean Anderson of Salem, age 84, will be held Sunday at 2:00 at the Grace Community Church. Vistation will be Saturday fro m5:00 to 7:00 at the Dent County Memorial Chapel. Interment will be in the Cedar Grove Cemetery. Memorails are suggested to the Dent County Animal Welfar Society or the Grace Community Church.

Funeral services for Vesta T. Campbell of Lamar, formerly of Bunker, age 94, will be held Monday morning at 11:00 at the James & Gahr Mortuary in Salem. Visitation will be from 10:00 until time of service. Interment will be in the Bay Cemetery.

Graveside services for Beverly Ann Hall of Rolla, age 78, will be held Wednesday at 3:00 at the Arni Memorial Cemetery in Lancaster. Visitation will be Tuesday from 5:00 to 7:00 with an Eastern Star service at 7:00 at the James and Gahr Mortuary in Rolla. Memorials are suggested to the Schuyler Co. Historical Society.

Weather [TOP]

Today..Cloudy with areas of dense fog this morning with intermittent drizzle, high of 45.
Tonight..Mostly cloudy with areas of desne fog, low around 30.
Saturday..Mostly cloudy with fog in the morning, high of 46.
Saturday night..Cloudy with a 20% chance for rain, low of 32.
Sunday..Partly sunny, high around 50.

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