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The Dent County Commissioners held their regular meeting at the Dent County Courthouse Monday morning. At the meeting District 1 Commissioner Bobby Simpson reported that crewmembers were busy on Sunday spreading sand on highly traveled roads, hills and intersections. He said that no grading would be done this week, so crews would be out the next couple of days checking for limbs and catching up on maintenance. Simpson also said that he had gotten two estimates for new road signs that would be put up after the rural addressing project is complete. Barco gave an estimated cost of $23,735 and G & C Supply Company gave an estimated cost of $15,542.55; Simpson voted to go with G & C Supply Company and all agreed. District 2 Commissioner J.J. Tune reported that crews are out spreading sand on hills, low water bridges and chip and sealed roads and checking for downed limbs. Tune said that once the ground thaws, gravel would be hauled to the roads that have a lot of mud. Presiding Commissioner Darrell Skiles reported that he attended a MRPC Transportation Advisory Committee meeting Thursday evening. Skiles said the main topic of discussion was that MODOT would be receiving $140 million dollars through Amendment 3 for road issues in Districts 5 and 9, and $70 million of that would be allocated for rural road projects. Skiles said part of that money would be used in this area for turning Highway 63 into a four-lane highway from Rolla to the Maries County line. Dent County Clerk Angie Curley reported that the Courthouse and Judicial Building would be closed Friday from 12:00 to 1:00 for the annual Christmas lunch. At the previous meeting the county received a letter from the Department of Public Safety stating that $7,756.00 in grant money is available for Law Enforcement and the Dent County Sheriffs Department has applied for the grant, and it should become available in 2008. Dent County Prosecuting Attorney Jessica Sparks also dropped by the meeting to inform the Commission that she is working with the sheriffs department on updating the jail policy and the Commission has asked for it to be reviewed. She also presented her court docket and talked about her caseload with the Commission and asked for further clarification about her budget and transferring money within the budget. The County Clerk asked Sparks if she wanted the budget officer to make a recommendation to the county commission to transfer money into her clerical salary line, and Sparks said there would be no need for that request. Sparks also talked about her storage space issues and said she would like to be involved with the Commission if they were looking into real estate. The next meeting of the Commission will be Thursday morning at 9:00 and the meeting is open to the public.
Signups for one east-ward alderman, one west- ward alderman and the mayor of Salem began Tuesday with Kenneth Nash and incumbent Mike Whitley signing up for the west-ward aldermanic position, incumbent Jim McDaniels signing up for the east-ward aldermanic position, and incumbent Gary Brown and Rodney D. Peterson signing up for the mayor’s position. There is a filing fee of $25 for city offices and signups will continued through January 22nd at 5:00.
The Dent County Fire Protection District held their Board of Directors meeting on Tuesday, December 11th. During reports, the district reported a record of 303 calls for 2007, the 2008 budget was discussed with some concern and the Board decided to review the budget and table it till the next meeting. The final building payment was written and delivered to the RE Mitchell Corporation and the Deed of Release has gone to the lawyers but has not been received, and the truck payment of $61,620.20 invoice has been received. During the calendar review, Chief Nash reported that the annual Dent County Fire Protection District Toy Drive sign-up is completed with 104 families signing up. Nash also reported that both himself and the Assistant Chief have passed the State Investigator class and only need to pass the State examine given on December 19th, to complete all facets of training and certification. Nash also reminded the Board that December 18th was the first date to file for election with three positions available. Nash reported that Engine 82 would not start on its regularly scheduled check and on inspection, gas was found in the oil. Engine 81 has an auto drain problem and has been addressed on 2 or 3 other occasions with valves being replaced, but it has not corrected the problem. Nash presented the Board with a bid from Kirker Electric for the installation of 3-phase wiring for the new compressor from grant money. Three companies were contacted and looked at the job with Kirker Electric being the only bid submitted. After discussion and at the request of Chief Nash, it was determined a Board member should contact Kirker Electric and discuss the importance of completing the job, a motion as made to accept the bid.
An accident happened Tuesday afternoon at 12:25 in Phelps County on Highway 63 about a mile and half south of Yancy Mill. According to the highway patrol report, a 2003 Ford Taurus driven by 53-year old Judy Frolick of Lecoma was traveling northbound on Highway 63. Frolick lost control of the Ford and ran off the right side of the road and struck a guardrail. The Ford then cam back onto the road, ran off the left side of the road and struck another guardrail, came back onto the road and again ran off the left side of the road and came to rest. Frolick suffered moderate injuries and was taken by the Phelps County ambulance to the Phelps County Regional Medical Center in Rolla. The Ford sustained extensive damage and was towed from the scene by the Lucas Garage of Edgar Springs. No citations were issued.
C.J. Smith scored 19 points including three 3-pointers as the Salem Tigers won their second straight contest, 73-51 over the West Plains Zizzers. Taylor Sirois netted 16 points and captured 14 rebounds for the Tiger who also received double digit scoring from Cody Wofford with 14 points and Zach Pitchford with 12 points. Salem will be off until Thursday, December 27th when they face Springdale, Arkansas in the US Bank Tournament in Rolla.
The Salem Lady Tigers will travel to St. Clair Friday night to face the Lady Bulldogs. The JV game will start at 6:00 with the varsity to follow.
Funeral services for Clay Hahn of St. James, age 53 will be held today at 11:00 at the James & Gahr Mortuary in St. James. Interment will be in the St. James Cemetery. Memorials are suggested to the Donor’s Choice.
Funeral services for Ernie Ray Hutchens of Salem, age 69, will be held Friday at 11:00 at Wilson Mortuary in Salem. Visitation will be Thursday from 6:00 to 8:00. Interment will be in the Cedar Grove Cemetery. Memorials are suggested to the Ernie Hutchens Memorial Fund.
Graveside services for Margery Loretta “Plank” Pitcher of Springfield, age 92, will be held Saturday at 1:30 at the Cedar Grove Cemetery. Visitation will be from 11:30 to 1:00 at the Dent County Memorial Chapel in Salem. Interment will be in the Cedar Grove Cemetery.
Funeral services for Denis Charles Kindel of Rolla, age 60, are incomplete at this time but are under the direction of the James & Gahr Mortuary in Rolla.