The Hays Daily News from Hays, Kansas on June 9, 2006 · Page 1
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The Hays Daily News from Hays, Kansas · Page 1

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Hays, Kansas
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Friday, June 9, 2006
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Larks rally PageBl THE VOICE OF THE HIGH PLAINS Friday June 9,2006 Hays, Kansas 500 New Smith Co. sheriff ready to get going Committee chooses deputy from Lincoln County By STACIE R. SANDALL HAYS DAILY NBWS SMITH CENTER — After two hours in a crowded Smith County courtroom Thursday night, loud applause and whistling filled the air. Overwhelming relief could be sensed as county residents filed out of the room, talking about their new sheriff. After interviewing seven candidates for the position, the Republican Central Committee elected Lincoln County Deputy Bruce Lehman to serve as Smith County sheriff. "I plan on going in and meeting with the staff and talking with them, the best way to get things going," Lehman said after the Lehman meeting. "Same with the county attorney. We have to get a lot of things worked out and going the right direction." Six other candidates took their turn at the microphone; former Smith County Sheriff Al Gaines, current un- dersheriff and acting Sheriff Robert Dekle, retired Burlington Police Chief Ralph Romig of lola, Smith County deputies Chad Meyer and Ken Holding, and Bob Gibson, who served as undersheriff to Gaines. After five minutes of campaigning from each candidate, there was an op- portunity for others to step forward and vouch for each one. Only three of the potential sheriffs had advocates. Lincoln County Sheriff Russ Black spoke for Lehman, saying Lehman has been his right-hand man. "I don't want to get rid of him, but I'm not going to keep him from furthering his career," said Black. The sheriff said Lehman was reliable and that he often went to Lehman for his input on certain issues. "I really hate to lose him, but he'll do a good job for the county," Black said af- ter his deputy's selection. "He's got a lot of experience and has the knowledge to do this county a good job." Lehman said he wanted the position to further his career in law enforcement, which he's been in since 1987. While in Lincoln County, Lehman helped build an entire new sheriff's department. He said that experience will help him with his goal of reorganizing the Smith County office so it works more smoothly. SEE SHERIFF, PAGE A8 Big splash JAMIE ROPER / Hays Daily News Kadon Augustine takes an unexpected dip in his mom's pool Wednesday after older brother Bradley pushed away Kadon's floating support. The two, along with brother Allen, not pictured, spent the hottest part of the day cooling off in the pool before doing household chores. Hays chiropractor reappointed to board Arnett By PHYLLIS J. ZORN HAYS DAILY Nuws A Hays chiropractor is among four people reappointed this week to the Kansas Board of Healing Arts. "I'm just finishing up my first term," Vinton Arnett said. "I was originally appointed by Gov. Bill Graves in 2002." Arnett, who has practiced 30 years at the same location in Northridge Plaza, is the second member of his family to be tabbed to serve on the board. His father, Carroll Arnett, who was a chiropractor in Belleville and later in El Dorado, had a turn on the board during its early days. Arnett said he likes the fact that the board is a combination of health-care providers from different specialties. The board is made up of 15 people — five medical doctors, three doctors of osteopathy, three chiropractors, one podiatrist and three members of the public. Members can serve as many as three terms. "Kansas is very unique in that we have a composite group," Arnett said. Having different specialists together overseeing 13 different health-care professions — including physical, occupational and respiratory therapists and athletic trainers as well as physicians, chiropractors and podiatrists — helps the groups see each other as all being on the same team, Arnett said. "It fosters better relations between the professions," Arnett said. "It provides for more efficient, effective, safe, better health care for the people of Kansas." Arnett said that how much time commitment is required depends on whether the board member is part of a disciplinary panel. The board meets every other month, but disciplinary panel members review investigation findings related to complaints about health care providers. About 2,000 complaints are sent to the office each year. Out of those, about 500 are investigated, Arnett said. The disciplinary panel reviews 25 to 40 cases every other month — about 250 complaints per year. "We review all the information before we even come together and meet," Arnett said. "Then we make a recommendation to the full board." » Arnett said that if the complaint concerns a competency issue, the complaint is reviewed by a panel of non-board members in the same profession, who make a recommendation for the disciplinary panel. If the complaint concerns professional conduct, it goes from the investigator straight to the disciplinary panel. SEE BOARD, PAGE A8 Wheat crop even worse than expected, USDA says Hays teacher takes passion to the road in bike trek By ROXANA HEGEMAN ASSOCIATED PRESS WICHITA — Winter wheat production in Kansas and the rest of the nation is faring even worse . than feared, according to a new government forecast issued today. The Agriculture Department's production forecasts for the winter wheat crop in Kansas were revised downward to 291.4 million bushels. If realized, the Kansas crop will be 23 percent smaller than last year's harvest. Kansas is expected to harvest 9.4 million acres, 100,000 fewer acres than last year. Yields across the state were predicted to average 31 bushels per acre. The forecast — based on crop conditions June 1 — is down 9 percent from the May projections. Nationwide, the Agriculture Department predicted the winter wheat harvest would be 1.26 billion bushels, 4 percent lower than the last month's projection and 16 percent below last year. Yields nationwide were forecast at 40.5 bushels per acre. The agency blamed continued drought for the decline in production. In Texas, wheat production is forecast to be the lowest since 1971. In Oklahoma, the crop has not been this small since 1957. SEE WHEAT, PAGE A8 By DIANE GASPER-O'BRIEN HAYS DAILY NEWS Until about a year ago, Gay Flax didn't know much about bicycle riding. Her exercise of choice since kindergarten was running. But because of a goal she set for her fourth-grade class at O'Loughlin Elementary School in Hays, Flax is one of the several hundred cycling enthusiasts who will be making their way across, the state in the 32nd annual Biking Across Kansas, The early start for the event that has spanned four decades begins today 18 miles west of Johnson City in far southwest Kansas. And Flax was anticipating her new endeavor like she approaches most things in life—with a passion. = overnight stops "This is a blast," she said earlier this week while making last- minute preparations for the trip. "The hardest thing for me is that I'll miss him, a lot," she said, nodding toward her 3-year- old son, Hunter, who will remain JUNO OGLE / Hays Dally News at home with his dad, Mike Flax — at least this year. "He goes with me every day," Flax said of Hunter, who rides behind his mom on a "Trail-A- Bike." "Next year, I'm thinking of taking him with me (on BAK), at least for a couple of days." This year's BAK route runs along southern Kansas. After more than a week on the road, the bicyclists will complete their 485-mile ride June 17 in Mulberry, a small town of about 590 on the Missouri state line. "I have no doubt I'll make it the entire way," said Flax, who said that she has no qualms of making her first BAK ride at age 44. She has felt that way ever since she agreed last year to accompany one of her sisters-in- law on the trip. And Flax didn't even think about pulling out when her sister-in-law announced about a month ago that it wasn't going to work for her to go on BAK this year. SEE BAK, PACE A3 IN THE NEWS Teen flies to Jordan in attempt to see nan she met on Wen site DETROIT (AP) —A 16-year- old girl who flew to the Middle East to see a man she met on MySpace.com was detained in Jordan and was headed home today, an FBI spokesman said. U.S. officials persuaded Katherine Lester to take the return flight from Amman, FBI Special Agent Robert Beeckman said from the agency's Detroit office. Katherine had disappeared from her home in Gilford, in eastern Michigan, on Monday and apparently planned to vis- It a man whose MySpace account describes him as a 25- year-old from Jericho, said Tuscola County Undersheriff James Jashlnske. The sheriff's department contacted the FBI, which traced the teen to a flight from New York to Amman, Jashlnske said. On Thursday night, her family received word from U.S. officials that she had been stopped as she arrived In Amman en route to Tel Aviv, Israel. Katherine's mother, Shawn Lester, said her daughter had persuaded her In April to help her get a passport so she could go on a two-week vacation to Canada with a (fiend's family. LIGHTER SIDE PLEASANT HILL, Ore. (AP) — Graduating seniors at Pleasant Hill High School were In no rush to get to school for their final day. About a dozen of them drove to school Wednesday on riding mowers, forcing traffic on Highway 58 to slow to about 10 mph. , "We wanted to make people wait," said Kodl Long, 18. "We were trying to teach them a lesson — not to hurry." Ty Holloway, 17, was puttering along on a John Deere when he was stopped by a police offcer. The officer laughed and sent him on his way when told of the circumstances, Hoi- loway said. But police Sgt. Mike Wisdom said It was technically Illegal. A riding lawn mower meets the legal definition of a motor vehicle and,the statutes that apply to vehicles apply to riding lawn mowers, too. COMING SUNDAY In a short time, permitted citizens will be able to carry concealed guns, The new law draws mixed responses in Hays, INSIDE this c( that A2 Kansas A3 Faith AS Opinion A6 Obituaries A8 Financial AS Sports B1 Scoreboard B2 Classifieds 03 Comics 07 Annie's Mailbox 07 Dr. Donohue 07 OUTSIDE UCAIFMEUST Tonight breezy. Mostly cloudy with a 40- percent chance of thunderstorms. Lows in the upper 60s, South winds gusting up to 30 mph until early morning. Expanded weather, page B8. 3 sections, 38 pages CONTACT us: PHONE: (785) 628-1081 OR (800) 657-6017 FAX: (785) 628-8186

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