Saturday, May 15th
Suspect Arrested Following Child Porn Investigation
A four-month investigation by the OSBI into allegations of a man obtaining child pornography has resulted in an arrest. 21-year old Chance Arlan Mason was arrested by agents at his Blanchard apartment Thursday morning. Mason is accused of downloading more than one hundred photos and videos of child porn. He is charged with possession of child porn and violating the computer crimes act. He remains in jail on a $250,000 bond. Court documents indicate the investigation began January 21st when the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children received a report of an individual suspected of electronically obtaining child porn. The affidavit filed by the OSBI indicates that Mason admitted he had been downloaded and purchasing child and adult porn for about three years and spent about $1,000 a month on porn sites.
Coach's Death Leads to Passage of New State Law
The death of beloved Rush Springs football coach Barry Foster helped to serve as a springboard to pass a new state law called the No Patient Left Alone Act. The measure allows hospital patients to designate one visitor to have unrestricted visitation. Foster, who died as a result of the coronavirus, was alone when he passed away from the illness. Foster's wife and children were among many who were unable to be present in the final moments of their loved one's lives because of restrictions in place. State Representative Toni Hasenbeck of Elgin authored the bill who said adding isolation on top of health struggles drastically affects the patient's mental health. The bill prohibits the termination, suspension, or waiver of visitation rights by hospitals, the state health department, or any government agency regardless of declarations of emergency by the governor or the legislature. The measure does allow for hospitals to have certain restrictions but they are prohibited from requiring patients to waive their rights specified in the No Patient Left Alone Act.
Bridge Construction Work May Cause Traffic Delays
The Washita River bridge construction work on US Highway 62 east of Chickasha could cause some traffic delays next week. State Department of Transportation officials say flaggers will be out on Tuesday and Thursday to stop traffic occasionally for a bridge beam placement. Motorists can expect delays and should be prepared to stop or find an alternate route. Future bridge beam placements will take place over the next few weeks and will be announced as schedules are finalized. The two bridges are being replaced at a cost of $12.5 million. Manhattan Road and Bridge Company of Tulsa is the firm that was awarded the project which is expected to be completed in late summer 2022.
Science and Arts Names Top Grad
A number of outstanding graduates were recognized at the University of Science and Arts commencement program this spring but one was named the Distinguished Graduate for 2021. Genevieve Gordon graduated summa cum laude with a GPA of 3.99. She earned her Bachelor of Arts Degree in English and sociology. Gordon will be moving on to Pennsylvania State University this fall as a fully-funded teaching assistant in that university's master's program which is considered to be the most prestigious such program in the country.
Talk Show Topics
Here's what we're talking about this weekend. Courtney Mayall and Brandi Bradford with the Chickasha Public Library are on our KOOL Konversation program. Our guest on Real Estate Today is John Feaver, president of the University of Science and Arts. Find links to both programs under the community tab on this website.
Friday, May 14th
State Lawmakers Discuss $8.3 Billion State Budget Plan
Gov. Kevin Stitt and Republican leaders at the state capital are backing a proposed $8.3 billion state budget for the fiscal year that will start in July. If approved, it would be an increase from the $7.8 billion budget for the current fiscal year. Officials say the plan would increase funding for education, allow the state to put away hundreds of millions into state savings accounts, and cut corporate and personal income taxes. Officials say an unexpected surge in state revenues means that instead of cutting budgets, leaders can make investments and increase state agency budgets by about 7 percent on average. The plan would reduce the top personal income tax rate from 5 percent to 4.75 percent and reduce the corporate income tax from 6 percent to 4 percent. It would also place $800 million into savings accounts. State Democrats say some of money targeted for savings accounts could be used to end sales taxes on groceries and would restore and increase the Earned Income Credit which puts money into the pockets of Oklahomans. Democrats said they could not vote for any budget that sends $25 million of taxpayer money to private schools.
Chickasha Summer Food Program Set
There will be summer food program for youth in the Chickasha area. The Chickasha Library is teaming up with the Regional Food Bank to offer food packs for children starting June 1st. Food will be distributed Monday through Friday (with the exception of holidays) for all of June and July. No income verification or proof of residency is required. There will be two pick-up locations including Washita Valley Park from 11:00 a.m. to noon and at the library from noon to 1:00 p.m. The summer food program will run June 1st through July 30th.
Community Blood Drive This Afternoon
KOOL and RANCH radio stations are again joining with the Oklahoma Blood Institute for a community blood drive today. Those who donate will be eligible to win a Ranger boat or a Traeger grill. Donors will receive a special summer t-shirt and a voucher for either two tickets to Safari Joe's H20 Water park or one ticket to Frontier City. The OBI bloodmobile will be set up across the street from the stations in the YMCA parking lot at 7th and Chickasha Avenue from 12:30 to 5:30 this afternoon. Many appointments have been scheduled but walk-ups are welcome.
OBI Urges Support for SB 905
Speaking of the blood institute, the agency is asking for Oklahomans to contact their state lawmakers and urge them to support proposed legislation that would help increase blood donations. It's SB 905 which would offer tax credits to businesses that contribute work time and space for employee blood drives. Officials say it would also strengthen the state's disaster preparedness by increasing locations where emergency blood drives can be held, and foster a public-private partnership to improve patient care and strengthen communities. Timing is critical to reach out to state lawmakers as the legislative session is scheduled to end May 27th.
Blanchard May Daze Underway
Town-wide garage sales, a carnival, and numerous vendors are on hand for the City of Blanchard’s annual May Daze celebration. Dozens of vendor booths line the downtown area, there are food trucks,, Blanchard Idol is back, and there is a cornhole tournament. The Blanchard Chamber of Commerce hosts the event with sponsors that include Knippelmeier Chevrolet, The Pioneer Telephone Corporation, Ovintiv, and Sutterfield Land Surveying. Blanchard May Daze runs today through Sunday, May 16th.
Coffee and Cars Event is Saturday Morning
Fans of classic cars and trucks can spend part of their Saturday morning tomorrow with the monthly Coffee and Cars gathering. It's held the third Saturday of every month. It's a free event held at Bates Repair at Highway 81 and Cottonwood Road. There's free coffee and donuts while they last. You can bring your classic car or truck as well. Coffee and Cars runs from 9 to 11 tomorrow morning.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $63.82 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $67.05.
Natural gas is $2.97 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,834 and silver is $27.29.
Service for Loretta Moore, 84, of Chickasha are under the direction of Ferguson Funeral Home.
Graveside service for Voncille Daniel, 91, of Pocasset will be at 2:00 p.m. Saturday, May 15th at the Pocasset Cemetery. Arrangements are with Sevier Funeral Home.
Thursday, May 13th
Woman, Child Killed in Caddo County Crash
The Oklahoma Highway Patrol is investigating a head on collision that killed a woman and a six-year old girl in Caddo County yesterday. A five-year old boy in the car with them survived but was taken to an Oklahoma City hospital where he was admitted in fair condition. The trooper investigating the crash said all three were in a car that collided with a Dodge 3500 truck at the crest of a hill east of Lookeba. The accident happened about 8 o'clock Wednesday morning near the intersection of two county roads. Killed in the crash was 28-year old Gena Evans of Hinton. The children were both from Ft. Cobb and their names were not released. The driver of the truck, 27-year old Shawn Tillman also of Hinton, was taken to an Oklahoma City hospital where he was treated and released.
Suspect Arrested in Child Sexual Assault Case
A suspect wanted on charges of child sexual abuse is behind bars. Caddo County officials issued an arrest warrant for 36-year old Dustin Kyle Taylor of Binger last week. The Lawton Constitution reports that Taylor was wanted for the ongoing molestation of a girl. The warrant for three felony counts of child sexual assault was issued last Friday. It wasn't clear when Taylor was arrested but on-line court records indicate that he had his initial appearance in Caddo County District Court yesterday. His bond was set at $20,000. A preliminary hearing conference was scheduled for June 25th.
Energy Companies Return to Drilling
Several energy companies are trying to make a comeback in the aftermath of the pandemic. Continental Resources has received drilling permits in both the SCOOP and STACK plays. In Grady County, Continental will be drilling the Linton No. 2 Well due east of Ninnekah in Section 32 of Township 6 North and Range 6 West. Continental also received a permit to drill in Blaine County, southeast of Thomas. Kaiser-Francis Oil Company received a permit to drill two wells in Caddo County southwest of Binger. They are the Cart and Gunter Wells in Section 20 of Township 9 North and Range 11 West. Red Rocks Oil and Gas received a permit to drill the Elizabeth Norvill Well northeast of Lindsay in McClain County in Section 29 of Township 5 North and Range 4 West. Redland Resources received a permit to drill the Hilltop Well southeast of Sterling in Comanche County.
Chickasha's Miniature Golf Course Opens
Chickasha's newest entertainment venue is now open! The Jungle Ice Fun Zone, the city's 18-hole putt-putt golf course is located on Grand Avenue south, near the city's sports complex. In addition to miniature golf there are video games, pool tables and concessions. Hours of operation are from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, and 10 a.m. until midnight on Friday and Saturday. The Jungle Ice Fun Zone is owned and operated by Jerry and Sheila Layman and Steven Layman and Jennifer Cable. Find the Jungle Ice Fun Zone on Instagram and Facebook.
Cattle Poisoning Problem to be Discussed
Cattle producers concerned with prussic acid poisoning that might affect their herds can get an update in the next Grady County agriculture producers meeting. OSU Extension beef cattle specialist Jason Banta will discuss the issue next week at the Grady County OSU extension office. Banta also works with AgriLife and A&M faculty to conduct beef cattle research in the areas of ruminant nutrition, cow-calf stocker managements, and animal health. He also helps to coordinate and teach an applied beef cattle nutrition course at the OSU College of Veterinary medicine. Producers can attend in person or watch on the Zoom platform. The program will be Tuesday, May 18 at 7 a.m.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $66.08 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $69.32.
Natural gas is $2.97 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,810 and silver is $26.85.
Rev. Joseph Ross
Father Joseph Ross, longtime priest for the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City, passed away Friday, May 7, 2021 at the age of 76. He was the oldest brother of former Chickasha Mayor Hank Ross. Fr. Ross was a priest for more than 50 years, ordained into the priesthood in Chickasha in 1969. A vigil service will be at 6:00 p.m. Monday, May 17th at The Epiphany of the Lord Catholic Church in Oklahoma City. Funeral mass will be at noon Tuesday, May 18th at The Cathedral of Our Lady of Perpetual Help. Arrangements are with Sevier Funeral Home. Memorial contributions may be made to Holy Name Catholic Church in Chickasha.
Wednesday, May 12th
Anadarko to Host Opioid Awareness Program
Several groups in Anadarko are joining forces to fight opioid and fentanyl addiction. A number of Native American tribes, the City of Anadarko, local organizations, and volunteers are coming together to battle what they say is an epidemic. A group called TOR - which stands for Tribal Opioid Response - has organized an opioid awareness event for this Saturday, May 15th. There will be guest speakers, free NARCAN training, and groups will have a lot of information to make individuals aware of the dangers associated with the abuse of pain-killing drugs. Participants will also be able to turn in old or unused prescription drugs. The opioid awareness event will be an open street program on West Broadway from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Participants are asked to bring lawn chairs and it is suggested that those attending wear masks and follow social-distancing measures. Among the tribal groups taking part are the Delaware Nation, The Kiowa Tribe, the Apache Tribe, the Ft. Sill-Apache Tribe, the Wichita and Affiliated Tribes, and the Comanche Nation.
Suspect Accused of Taking Guns from Chix Home
Chickasha police arrest a man for allegedly breaking into a local home and taking some firearms. Police were dispatched to a home in the 200 block of North 11th Street last Thursday to investigate. A resident there said he came home to find a known suspect in the house. A police affidavit indicated the suspect did not have permission to be inside the home. The suspect ran out of the house and got into an SUV and drove away. A few minutes later, a state trooper had the SUV pulled over southeast of town. The suspect was in the vehicle but when contacted denied taking anything. Authorities arrested 24-year old Christian Benson on a burglary complaint. Prosecutors charged him with a felony for second degree burglary and Benson remains in jail on a $50,000 bond.
Handful of Voters Cast Ballots in Rush Springs Election
There was a special municipal election in Rush Springs yesterday but hardly anybody cast ballots. Less than 10 individuals decided on the extension of a franchise agreement with Public Service Company of Oklahoma. The unofficial results had the issue passing unanimously, 7-0.
Chickasha Seeks Festival of Light Director
Officials are searching for a new director for one of Oklahoma's favorite destinations for Christmas light displays. Chickasha's Festival of Light is looking for someone to accept that responsibility. The individual is responsible for coordinating the program; organizational structure and procedures; the motivation and recruitment of volunteers; income and expenses; employment and training of staff and volunteers; and long-range planning. The successful candidate will have to live in Chickasha and be available to work nights from mid-November to the end of December. Applicants with a bachelor's degree in marketing are preferred along with five years of working knowledge of non-profit groups or chamber of commerce experience. It is a full-time position with the Chickasha Chamber of Commerce and includes benefits. Application review is already underway and the target date to have a new director in place is June 1st.
CV Tech Students Earn Top Honors
A couple of students at the Chickasha campus of the Canadian Valley Technology Center have been honored for their work. Amos Gonzales and Parker Shaffer have been named the CV Tech Foundation's Outstanding Scholars. Gonzales, of Chickasha is the top post-secondary student; while Shaffer, a home school student from Chickasha is the high school winner. Gonzales will soon complete CV Tech's Digital Media program. He's among the members of the school's state champion quiz bowl team which won the top spot at the recent SkillsUSA competition. Shaffer is in the service careers area and plans to attend a Bible college and become a missionary.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $65.28 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $68.55.
Natural gas is $2.95 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,835 and silver is $27.51.
Ronnie ‘Dogg’ Fulton, Jr.
A celebration of life for Ronnie "Dogg" Fulton, Jr. 53, of Cement will be at noon Friday, May 14th at the Cement High School Auditorium. Arrangements are with Ferguson Funeral Home.
Tuesday, May 11th
Consumer Spending Sluggish in Grady County
For a second consecutive month, consumer spending in Grady County was down from the previous month. Back in February, it's estimated that county-wide consumer spending was just under $53 million. That's down 13 percent from January and off nearly 21 percent from February of last year. Consumer spending estimates are based on sales tax revenues returned to the region. Grady County received about $396,000 in sales tax revenues in April - funds which were collected on the purchase of taxable goods and services in February. Here's the breakdown of how the $396,000 is spent, all of which were approved by county voters. The Grady County Fairgrounds received $132,000; Grady Memorial Hospital received $117,000; the seven senior nutrition centers shared $66,000 with each one collecting about $9,500; the 20 county fire districts shared $66,000 with each getting $3,300; Tuttle EMS received $12,000; and Rush Springs EMS collected $3,000.
Chix Dispensary Ordinance to be Reviewed
A number of public hearings are scheduled for today's meeting of the Chickasha Planning Commission. One is to consider changes and updates to the city ordinance for medical marijuana dispensaries and grow facilities. Another is to consider a use-on-review for a medical marijuana dispensary for Brannan Bordwine at 420 W. Grand Avenue. Several public hearings are scheduled to consider rezoning lots in the Southgate Addition from residential to commercial use at the request of Bryce Binyon. The panel will also discuss a request for re-zoning changes for the Planned Unit Development for The Villas at Grand Avenue. Any recommendations by the Planning Commission are not final. All the rulings are sent to the city council for its consideration.
Chix Seeks Applicants for Community Development Posts
The City of Chickasha is looking to fill a couple of positions in its Community Development Department. Officials are seeking applicants for a Chief Building Official and a Building Inspector. Candidates for the Chief Building Official should have a bachelor's degree and/or four years related experience and training along with continuing education and certifications. The individual will oversee and participate in the plan review and inspection of all properties to ensure compliance with building codes; serve as an in-house expert on building code interpretation; and regulating the minimum standards of the safety, health, and welfare of the community. Building Inspector candidates should have an Associate's Degree in construction or a related field, two years’ experience in building construction, and two years’ experience as a building inspector. Duties include performing inspections; enforcing building, electrical, plumbing and mechanical codes; and ensuring that all codes and ordinances regarding construction, building safety, and the general welfare of the community are observed. The openings are posted on the City of Chickasha's website and applicants can file at city hall.
Chix School Students Recognized for Achievements
As the school year begins to wind down, dozens of Chickasha students were recognized for their extra-curricular achievements by the Chickasha school board last night. Numerous student athletes, band members, and ag students were honored for their accomplishments. The panel also recognized Aubree Wright as an Academic All-Stater. The school board also recognized Stephanie Riley in transportation and Mark Crowder in maintenance as the Chicken Express’ Employees of the Month. Also the support employees union, the Chickasha Association of Support Employees, was recognized by the Oklahoma Education Association with its 2021 Collective Bargaining award. Next week will be senior week with a number of activities for the graduates-to-be. Graduation is scheduled for Friday, May 21st. The last day of classes for the rest of Chickasha school students is Monday, May 24th.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $64.92 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $68.32.
Natural gas is $2.93 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,840 and silver is $27.59.
A memorial service for Hugh Malicoat, 43, of Chickasha will be held at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 12th at Full Gospel Church.
Monday, May 10th
Elderly Woman Dies in Caddo County Rollover
A weekend rollover accident in Caddo County claims the life of a Weatherford woman. 70-year old Donna Chasenah died at an Oklahoma City hospital as a result of the injuries she sustained in the crash. Chasenah was a passenger in an SUV which ran off the road and overturned. Two other people in the SUV were taken to a Weatherford hospital where they were treated and released. They were identified as 23-year old Jamie Deevers and 24-year old Isaiah Harjo, both also of Weatherford. The accident happened about 1:30 p.m. Saturday on State Highway 58 north of Carnegie and southwest of Eakly. The highway patrol reports that Deevers was driving and that she turned to speak to one of the passengers. The vehicle ran off the highway and rolled twice.
Truck Driver Hurt in McClain County Accident
A truck driver was hospitalized after his semi ran off a McClain County road east of Dibble. 58-year old Glen Grumbles of Duncan was taken by ground ambulance to an Oklahoma City hospital where he was admitted in good condition. The accident happened about 7:30 p.m. Saturday on State Highway 59 south of Criner. The trooper dispatched to the crash site reported that Grumbles was trying to take a curve too fast then ran off the road and rolled an unknown number of times. Grumbles was trapped in the cab for about 20 minutes before being freed by the Dibble Fire Department.
Chix Schools 'Restoring Excellence' Projects to Start Soon
Agreements between Chickasha Public Schools and a couple of firms will be discussed by the board of education tonight. Superintendent Rick Croslin is proposing the agreements which are in connection with projects included in the Restoring Excellence Bond issues passed by school district voters earlier this year. One proposal is for architectural services with a firm known as LWPB and the other is for civil engineering services from the firm Smith, Roberts, and Baldischwiler. Croslin said both companies are being recommended after a committee interviewed several companies and discussed the work with contractor CMS Willowbrook. School board meetings have returned to the school administration building after the last few have been held at the high school activity center. Masks are optional for those who want to attend in person. The meeting can also be viewed on the district's YouTube channel which can be accessed from the district's website. The meeting will get underway at 6 p.m.
Archers On Target at National Competition
The Chickasha schools archery program had a number of students turn in some great performances at the National Archery in the Schools competition. For the boys, Joseph Shaw turned the best score for the Chickasha High School team with a 291 out of possible 300. That qualified him for the world archery in the schools competition. The top boys score from the Chickasha Middle School team came from Nolan Myrko with a 282. The top boys score for the Chickasha Elementary School team was turned in by Jaxon Bowman with a 256. For the girls, Danielle Adair had Chickasha High School's best score with a 256; the best Chickasha Middle School girl’s score came from Whitley Rey with a 266; the top score from the Chickasha Elementary School team was from Zoe Reyes with a 256. Several students received academic honors, including high school archers Joseph Shaw, Thomas Shaw, and Trenten Rippy and middle school archer Nolan Myrko.
Anadarko City-Wide Clean-up May 17th-22nd
The City of Anadarko will have its clean-up Anadarko campaign all of next week. The campaign runs Monday, May 17th through Saturday, May 22nd. The city is being divided into four sections and residents can check the city's Facebook page for those sections and the pick-up days. Officials say debris must be bagged or contained and placed at the curb prior to your particular pick-up day. They will pick up large items like refrigerators, freezers, stoves, and furniture. Or, residents can take those items as well as tires to a roll-off site at the police department. No hazardous items will be accepted. Officials also stress that they will only be making one stop at each address. Any properties not cleaned up by May 24th will be subject to code violations.
Grady County DAV to Meet Tuesday
The Grady County DAV chapter will hold its monthy meeting tomorrow night. The meeting will be held at the DAV headquarters in Chickasha at 6:00 p.m. Tuesday, May 11th. All veterans are welcome.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $64.90 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $68.28.
Natural gas is $2.96 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,838 and silver is $27.87.