The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas on January 27, 1986 · Page 3
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The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas · Page 3

Salina, Kansas
Issue Date:
Monday, January 27, 1986
Page 3
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Local/Kansas The Salina Journal Monday, January 27,1986 Page 3 Kansas to lose at least $8 million to budget cuts WASHINGTON (AP) - Uncle Sam's new budget-balancing law will do more than erase government red ink in the coming years. It stands to dramatically add to the financial burdens of state and local governments unless Congress and President Reagan agree on a tax increase to avoid massive cuts in federal spending, officials say. "Gramm-Rudman has the potential of being a tidal wave," warns Larry Dzieza, a senior staff associate of the National Association of State Budget Officers. "This has the potential in the next three years of being quite dramatic in terms of what it does to state and local programs." One thing is certain for Kansas. It, like other states, will receive fewer federal dollars. Losses this year should approach at least $8 million, according to some estimates, and could grow to more than $51 million in the 1987 federal fiscal year beginning in October. Museum head to leave post By JILL CASEY Staff Reporter The director of the Smoky Hills Museum announced his resignation recently in a letter to members of the Salina Arts and Humanities Commission and the Salina City Commission. Eveard Stelfox, 38, said Sunday his resignation wUl be effective May 15. He said Sandy, his wife, will finish the semester at Marymount Col- I] lege and they will move to Corvallis, Ore. There, he said, Sandy Stelfox will finish her degree in hotel-restaurant management at Oregon State University. "I guess it's only fair," he said. "She helped me through school." Stelfox has been in Sauna since August 1984. He oversaw the museum's collections when they were housed in a converted bathhouse in Oakdale Park and directed their transfer to the old post office building at Seventh and Iron Streets. The Smoky Hills Museum is to open next fall. "I think it has come a long way," Stelfox said of the project he has directed. "I won't be here for the grand opening, but I'll be here to see the renovations." He said the renovation of the interior of the former post office is to begin this week and be finished by April 30. Martha Rhea, director of the Sauna Arts and Humanities Commission, said she was sorry to see Stelfox go, but said a switch of directors shouldn't hurt the project. "We've got two years of practical experience under our belts now," Rhea said. "And I expect an easy transition." She said the director position would be advertised in several trade journals, and the application process would begin soon. The prospect is for reduced services to Kansans or tax increases, which appear unlikely in the political climate of an election year. Among the hardest hit programs will be social services and health programs along with education and highways. "There isn't any way with the kind of budget cutting that we've been doing over the last several years, we can absorb additional cuts from the federal government," says Robert Harder, secretary of the Kansas Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services. The state is not alone. Cities, counties and townships also face a loss of federal monies. "In terms of its impact in '87, one of two things is going to happen," says Ernie Mosher of the League of Kansas Municipalities. "Either they're going to cut their program service levels or they're going to have to increase other taxes." Terry Smith, Washington lobbyist for the state of Kansas, delivers this assessment: "Somebody is going to raise taxes. If the feds don't raise them, the states are going to raise them, and if the states don't raise them, the locals are going to raise them. The question is who." The budget-balancing legislation, known as the Gramm-Rudman Act after its sponsors, Sens. Phil Gramm, R-Texas, and Warren Rudman, R-N.H., passed during the last session of Congress, and requires the $220 billion deficit to be erased by 1991. To accomplish that, the law imposes automatic spending cuts each year if lawmakers fail to meet successively lower deficit targets. This year's goal is $172 billion and $144 billion in fiscal 1987. Already the Gramm-Rudman machinery has set into motion the first round of automatic budget cuts. They will take effect on March 1, unless lawmakers block them by producing their own blueprint for meeting the initial deficit target. Harder says SRS probably can adjust to expected federal funding losses this year by freezing services. "The strategy for the state, at least for the moment, would be to stop intake and start building waiting lists," he says. Subject to cutbacks would be programs offering residential care for the mentally retarded, alcohol and drug abuse treatment, day care, homemaker chore services for the elderly and disabled, as well as aid to local community action agencies which provide services to senior citizens. But potentially larger cuts will come from Gramm-Rudman in 1987. For 1987, FFIS projects cuts of $51.4 million for Kansas. The estimates point to reductions of about $7.8 million in social services, health and community health services block grants, which provide monies to care for the mentally retarded, elderly and drug and alcohol treatment; cuts of $2 million in education, including head start, vocational and adult programs, education for the handicapped; cuts of $3.8 million in low-income energy assistance, which helps the poor and elderly pay their utility bills; losses of $6.2 million in federal money to maintain and build highways; and cuts of $1.4 million in job training programs. Local governments would be pinched by reductions of $619,000 in community development block grants; $500,000 in federal wastewater treatment construction monies; and more than $1.7 million in general revenue sharing. Stelfox Positive steps Salina woman never thinks of herself as handicapped TemDeraay Carol Molski, who has cerebral palsy, tries to keep a positive outlook on her life. By JILL CASEY Staff Writer Carol Molski has encouraged many to concentrate on what they can do, not what they can't, during the 17 years she's worked in vocational rehabilitation. But Molski, 43, Sauna, doesn't merely give the advice. She lives by it. Diagnosed as having cerebral palsy when she was a toddler, Molski has learned firsthand the power of positives. "I don't like to talk of disabilities," said Molski recently, "that's negative. I like to speak of abilities." Cerebral palsy has affected Molski's speech. She must annunciate carefully so others will understand. Sometimes newcomers assume she is mentally retarded. But she doesn't dwell on her imperfect speech, or how others might perceive her. Instead, she concentrates on what she can do. Last summer Molski presented a paper at the International Symposium on Youth Rehabilitation in Israel. Her paper was one of 300 chosen from 900 submitted internationally. She was named Professional Handicapped Woman of the Year nine years ago. She's been invited to a conference in England that will focus on transitional work programs for the handicapped. "I don't look at this as fame," she said. "I look at it as another step, or opportunity, to spread the word that rehab works." She and her husband, Jim Molski, travel a lot. But most days she can be found at the Kansas Vocational Rehabilitation Center, where she supervises 10 programs. There, she said, she inspires some who realize they have much less to come to terms with than her. "Of course," she said, "that depends on the individual. But I see this job as a way to serve, and to help others get in touch with their potential. I see it as an opportunity to break down barriers ... where it will lead I don't know." By a twist of fate, Molski entered the fledgling vocational rehabilitation field. After she'd earned her bachelor's degree in psychology she wanted to pursue a career, but she had run out of money for necessary additional education. Because vocational rehabilitation was a fairly new field, she was offered a stipend to attend school. She's witnessed healthy advances in a field that has progressed from its infant stages to middle age during her career. Not the least of those advances is the practice of "mainstreaming" handicapped children into public schools. The idea that the early treatment of handicaps can help a child lead a fuller life also has been thoroughly vested into vocational rehabilitation theory, she said. She credits her parents, who never let her believe she was handicapped and who sent her to the Boston public schools with the other kids in the neighborhood, with having an inherent knowledge of how Molski should be treated. "I was real lucky," she said. "My parents never gave me a chance to think of myself of handicapped. They taught me to focus on what I could do." Information sought on fires The Sauna Police Department has selected recent damage to city property as the crime of the week for Salina Crimestoppers, a non-profit organization that pays cash rewards to people who help solve crimes. About 7:45 p.m. on Jan. 1, fires were started in a storage building in Oakdale Park and a city sanitation truck. Total damage to windows and screens in the building and to the truck was estimated at $16,000. Anyone with information about this or any other crime can call Crimes- toppers at 825-2500. Callers may receive up to a $1,000 reward. They are not required to give their names. Legislative audit uncovers school boards' bid problems ByDALEGOTER Harris News Service TOPEKA — When the Hays School Board opened bids last summer for a new sprinkler system for the high school football field, the $8,895 bid from Superior Irrigation of Salina was the lowest offer. But, according to a legislative audit released this week, the board instead awarded the contract to M&D Inc., a local firm whose bid was $42 higher. The school board's action was an apparent violation of the state law requiring school districts to accept the offer of the "lowest responsible bidder," the audit said, a violation "I am outraged by the level of non-compliance with the competitive bidding law." —State Sen. Ben Vidricksen that auditors found in four of the eight Kansas school districts audited. The findings point to a "significant problem" among school districts, the audit concluded. On a Claflin School Board project, the district could have saved $2,000 by accepting the low bid on a roofing project, the audit said. The disregard for the bidding law drew a quick response from state Sen. Ben Vidricksen, R-Salina, who last week asked Attorney General Robert Stephan to take action against the offending school districts. "I am outraged by the level of non- compliance with the competitive bidding law," Vidricksen wrote. Referring to the Hays board's action, Vidricksen said "I may be forced to suggest a lawsuit be filed on behalf of a (Salina) business that submitted the lowest bid on a project, but the bid went to a local (Hays) bidder instead." Auditors also found several other shortcomings in bidding procedures of the eight districts. Among them: • Six of the eight districts did not obtain sealed competitive bids on some purchases of more than $5,000, as required by law. Those districts are Claflin, Greensburg, Eudora, Columbus, Coffeyville and Kansas City. • None of the eight districts took bids on textbooks or other published educational materials. Administrators told auditors it was impractical to take bids on textbooks because a preferred book usually is available from only one publisher. Auditors recommended the law be changed to exempt textbook purchases. • Hays and Eudora apparently used multiple purchases to stay under the $5,000 level. The Hays district wrote three purchase orders on the same day to obtain master clocks for three schools, the audit said. One order was for $2,760 and the other two were for $2,734 each. Investigators unable to identify woman's body Investigators were unable Sunday to identify a woman, an apparent murder victim, whose body was found Saturday in a shallow creek near Brookville along Interstate 70. "We're looking for a missing person right now," said Saline County Sheriff Darrell Wilson. She was found lying in the creek near 1-70, about five miles west of the Brookville exit. She was semi- clothed, wearing only lavender slacks, pantyhose and a bra. The woman was believed to be in her mid- to late 20s, had sandy blonde hair, was about 5-foot-7 or 5-foot-8 and weighed between 125 and 130 pounds. No one from the area has been reported missing, Wilson said, so the woman is believed to be from out of state. Results of an autopsy performed Saturday by a Wichita pathologist have not been released, Wilson said. The woman's body was spotted by truck drivers on 1-70 Saturday. Officials were searching Saturday night for a man about 30 years old, 5-foot-6 to 5-foot-7 with a beard and tatoos. The man was driving a black TransAm wth a dent on the driver's side, Wilson said. Wilson said the man is not necessarily a suspect, but was seen in the area Friday and may be able to provide some clues. Air Midwest makes flying a family affair WICHITA (AP) — When Air Midwest Capt. Gary Forshee guided his 30-passenger Saab- Fairchild into the clouds Sunday afternoon on a flight to Kansas City and Des Moines, he was able to say that he knew his crew very well. At Forshee's right was his son Mike, a 25-year- old Air Midwest first officer who served as copilot. Out in the passenger cabin, his daughter, Lisa Collins, 22, was acting as a flight attendant for the regional airline. Air Midwest officials said Sunday that it was a first for the company to have a flight crew all from one family. They said it could be a first for the airline industry, but there wasn't any way to be sure. Forshee, 49, said he was proud of his children and had been looking forward to the flight since he had learned their schedules were going to mesh. Mike Forshee, an Air Midwest employee for about seven years and a co-pilot for the airline since September, had been flying with his father all month. "It takes a lot of the pressure off because we're kind of tuned into each other and you know what to The flying family: Gary Forshee (lef t), Lisa Collins and Mike Forshee. expect, "he said. Collins, who has been with the company for four years and also serves as a data processor for the airline, has flown with her her father before when he had a different co-pilot. She said it puts her at ease to be able to get on the intercom between the passenger cabin and the cockpit and say, "Hey, Dad." "He likes me to call him 'Captain Dad,' but I won't," she said. Forshee changed careers at age 35 because of his love of flying. He went from work as a quality engineer for two aircraft manufacturers to running his own ah* charter and flight training business in Salina. About nine years ago he started flying for Air Midwest. Mike Forshee, who still lives in Salina, said he had worked around airports since he was 18 and had never really had any other kind of job. He started on Air Midwest's refueling crews and also has worked as a baggage handler and ticket agent. Although he soloed in a glider when he was a junior in high school, the younger Forshee said he didn't start working on his multi-engine and commercial pilot ratings until about three years ago.

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