The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas on April 29, 2001 · Page 9
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The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas · Page 9

Salina, Kansas
Issue Date:
Sunday, April 29, 2001
Page 9
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THE SALINjarUOURNAL Great Plains A LOOK AHEAD / B2 DEATHS / B3 Animal licenses to be avaiiable Tuesday Beginning Tuesday, Salina residents will obtain or renew animal licenses at the Salina Animal Shelter, 329 N. Second. The licenses, which are required in Salina and can be obtained only for animals vacci-. nated for rabies, have been sold at the city clerk's office in the City-County Building, The purpose of the location change is to consolidate animal control and enforcement at the new shelter. The registration fee for animals not neutered is $10; the cost is $5 for neutered animals. Registration and licensing is required for animals once they are 120 days old. For questions, call the city finance department at 309-5735. County commission to consider pian Saline County Commissioners will be briefed Monday on a document — the proposed comprehensive plan — that lays the groundwork for development in the county The plan seeks to concentrate development on the fringes of Salina, It also lists priorities for road improvements and reduces the amount' of rural land available for residential development. Commissioners a few weeks ago received the plan from the Saline County Planning and Zoning Commission, Monday's briefing will begin at 11:30 a,m, in Room 209 of the City-County Building. Commissioners formally will consider the plan during their May 8 meeting. There will be a public hearing May 8 before commissioners vote, Tuesday, Tom Dickinson will be recognized for 20 years of service to the county's public works department. The meeting will begin at 11 a,m, in Room 107 of the City-County Building, City iias about 140 waste carts avaiiabie About 140 yard waste carts are available to city sanitation customers on a first-come, first-served basis. The city has placed 3,860 carts intended to make yard waste disposal more convenient. A one-time charge of $16 is required to obtain a cart; there are no subsequent fees to use them. Once all the available carts are distributed, customers can put their names on a waiting list. To request a cart, call the city water customer accounting department at 309-5740. City asics streets be cieared for cleaning The city needs your help in cleaning the streets. City staff request that vehicles and large items be removed from curbs and gutters in the following areas Sunday through Friday so the street sweeper can sweep the streets: from Crawford to the south city limits and from Ninth Street to the west city limits. Dodge City teen to be tried in baby deatii DODGE CITY —A Dodge City teen-ager has been ordered to stand trial on a charge of first-degree murder in the death of her newborn daughter. After a preliminary hearing Friday, District Judge Leigh Hood ruled there was enough evidence to bind Alma Monreal, 18, over for trial. An arraignment hearing is scheduled for May 4. Monreal was arrested in February after police found the baby's body in her apartment. Monreal's relatives had called police to say the teen might have given birth. Police later searched the apartment Monreal shared with her aunt. From Staff and Wire Reports CORRECTIOMS ••••• The Journal wants to set the record straight. Advise us of errors by calling the Journal at (785) 823-6363, or toll free at 1-800827-6363. Corrections will run In this space as soon as possible. FIRE JUSTIN HAYWORTH / The Salina Journal Salina firefighters stand watch over some hot spots after extinguishing a garage fire on South Marymount Road Saturday evening. Costly confusion Garage lost, house damaged in fire By NATE JENKINS The Salina Journal Firefighters may have been able to put out the flames of a house and garage fire sooner Saturday, but confusion over the home's location made response time longer. Damage to the Salina house, right next to the city limits, may have been more than was necessary A strong south wind fanned the flames at Dr. Dave Peterson's residence, 1500 S. Marymount. The house , caught fire when flames fingering off an adjacent garage reached it. The garage, which is north of and separate from the sprawling house near the Salina Elks Lodge, 1800 S. Marymount, was only ashes at 4 p.m., more than an hour after the fire started. An official cause of the fire had not been determined by late Saturday afternoon, but Peterson said a firecracker lit in the garage likely led to the blaze. Members of the Peterson family were home when the fire began, but nobody was injured, The north side of the house was charred, the roof partly collapsed, and acting Salina Fire Chief Steve Moody said the house had extensive damage. It also may have been a casualty of what Moody coined "confusion" that surrounded "the initial call from dispatch." "As far as I know, there may have been some confusion," Moody said, about whether city or county firefighters should battle the blaze. "All I know is, we immediately responded when we (the city fire department) had the call." Moody said there will be an investigation into how the apparent communication lapse occurred. According to Jim Sweeney, a Saline County Sheriff's Office deputy, the initial dispatch was for the Sheriff's Office and Saline County Rural Fire District No. 5 to respond to the blaze. "It came in on 911 as a county call," Sweeney said. See FIRE, Page B2 TJIM LEHRER VISIT Oh, by the way, he can write, too Jim Lehrer of PBS an accomplished writer willing to share talents By NATE JENKINS The Saltna Journal A fiction writer who is known to most as a broadcast fact finder has some practical advice for aspiring writers that cuts through much of the airy babble that surrounds the craft. "The first, second, third and fourth rules of writing are keep your bottom on the chair," said Jim Lehrer, a Wichita native who is the author of 12 novels, two memoirs, three plays and is, oh yeah, the executive director and anchor of "The Newshour with Jim Lehrer" on PBS. Lehrer and his wife, Kate Lehrer, also an author, held court at a writing workshop attended by about 50 Saturday at the Salina Public Library Both were scheduled to speak Saturday night at Kansas Wesleyan University, as well. The Lehrers brought a low- key, conversational approach to the workshop, taking questions from and joshing with workshop participants who asked mostly technical questions about writing. The sometimes hard-nosed, always serious Jim Lehrer that appears on the highly-acclaimed, hourlong PBS news show, was more jovial when discussing the craft Saturday He stood side by side with his wife as they seamlessly traded writing points, Jim Lehrer is currently doing research for a possible novel about a Kansas mental hospital. "You can get your ideas from almost anywhere," said Kate Lehrer. "The more you get into your research, the more things can change," Kate Lehrer's latest novel, "Out of Eden," won the 1996 Western Heritage Award for Outstanding Novel, Though the husband-wife team share the same opinions on certain pitfalls In writing and both concede there are no formulas for success, their proficiency differs greatly "He can write anytime, anywhere, under any circumstances, ,,, I cannot do that," Kate Lehrer said. One such place, oddly enough, is on the set of the PBS news show, where Jim Lehrer said he at times has written notes about novels during lulls in the broadcast action. He attributes his ability to write quickly to a journalism career where deadlines always loom and daily productivity is an expectation. "I'm not intimidated by the blank page or screen," he said. The need to maintain concentration and focus on air, he said, also has carried over to the writing room. "The performance part of what I do has truly honed my powers of concentration because I don't want to make a fool of myself on national television," Jim Lehrer said. As to what he enjoys reading, Lehrer said he is an Ernest Hemingway fan and, "I read spy novels because I write spy novels." One difficulty facing writers today, Kate Lehrer noted, is the lack of strong editors willing to spend time with writers, polishing their work and developing their skills. The discussion often touched on the difficult coupling of self- imposed willpower and solitude successful writers are able to achieve, which Jim Lehrer said boiled down to a hard- work mantra that is fitting for a Kansas crowd, "The bottom line is, what separates writers from those wlio want to write is: Writers write," Jim Lehrer said, "There's nothing more exciting than writing and at the same-time you write it saying, 'Oh my God, I did if," he said later. • STATE BUDGET Budget negotiators: Let's make a deal House, Senate running out of time to bridge budget gap By JOHN HANNA The Associated Press TOPEKA — Legislative budget negotiations began Saturday and senators and House members weren't sure they were even speaking the same language. Both chambers have passed bills aimed at closing a $206 million gap between expected revenues and spending already in place for fiscal 2002, which begins July 1, But dozens of differences, starting with their approaches, separated the House and Senate plans. As they started drafting a final compromise Saturday, members of the conference committee needed two hours just to list the differences. "We did our budget in English," said lead Senate negotiator Steve Morris, R-Hugoton. "They did theirs in Russian." Both plans would trim the $4.66 billion in appropriations already approved from the state's general ftind. Both would also step up collection of delinquent taxes, delay some payments, make accounting changes and tap funds not normally used to pay for general government expenses. See BUDGET, Page B2 TCHEAPTHERAPY If we only had brains, we'd avoid tornadoes But too often, gawking Kansans tend to hiave the mind of a scarecrow The closest I came to being "in" a tornado was in 1973, My wife and I and our firstborn were living in southwest Salina. When the weather turned nasty as it did this particular day area residents with inquiring minds tuned to KSAL radio for the blow-by-blow. If memory serves, the radio station was still using "Big Red" and "Little Red," its mobile news fleet consisting of a station wagon and a Volkswagen Beetle, both painted a vivid crimson. The fearless drivers of Big Red and Little Red had positioned themselves somewhere southwest of town, keeping eyes peeled on a developing storm and feeding live, static-filled reports back to the station and over the air. This may or may not have been the storm in which a funnel cloud had touched down and was bearing down on Little Red's last known position. Anxious attempts to raise Little Red produced only an empty hiss in re­ sponse, and radio listeners expected to peer outside and see Little Red spinning across the sky like a cast-off ruby slipper, Little Red survived unscathed, but Sundowner East trailer • court on Magnolia Road east of South Ohio did not. The twister took Out the mobile homes and continued northeast, where it' hit Niles before dissipating. As the funnel skirted south Salina, I could see firom my back yard only the roiling top of the twister. A row of mature poplar trees veiled my view of the rest of the swirling mass. Its passage was accompanied not by the sound of a fireight train but by a screaming female voice. It was my wife, standing at the foot of the basement stairs clutching our newborn son and yelling hysterically at me, standing in the back doorway, clutching a camera. GORDON D. FIEDLER JR. The Salina Journal • We who have never had our hair mussed by such an awesome force have an unexplainable fascination with tornadoes. Kansans who have never seen so much as a wall cloud are almost apologetic when asked by non-Kansans if they've ever seen a tornado. We're Midwesterners. We are supposed to see such phenomena regularly, much as a Southern Californian is expected to see the Pacific Ocean every day Blame a certain Judy Garland movie, but we Kansans have a reputation to uphold. Here at our office, we have a disaster plan that explains which bucket of sand we must stick our heads in, depending on what natural or manmade calamity should befall us. But during infi-equent tornado warnings, instead of moving calmly toward our designated bucket, many of us rush outside in hopes of catching a glimpse of the twister. Call it reportorial inquisitiveness. Call It really, really stupid. Pictures of the destruction in Hois- Ington, the most recent Kansas tornado victim, should be enough to send us to cellars long before the sirens wail. To be sure, many if not all of Hoisington's residents from now on will need only to see a darkening sky before taking cover. The rest of us should be so smart. But we have such a cavalier attitude toward tornadoes because we simply can't get our minds around the destructiveness of a 200 mph whirling dervish of debris. If earthquakes were predictable, we'd be the idiots straddling a fault line "just to feel the power," not thinking we could be snapped in two like dry wishbones. Good thing there's no active volcano close by The rim would be crowded with us fools hanging our heads into its sulfurous maw, waiting for an eruption and confident we could run fast enough to avoid getting beaned by flaming balls of magma. If any good is salvaged fl-om Hoisington's rubble, it will be instilling in us all a greater respect for serious storms. We can start by unloading our cameras. • Columnist Gordon D. Fiedler Jr can be reached at 823-6363 Ext. 145 or by email at SUGGESTIONS? CALL BEN WEARING, DEPUTY EDITOR, AT 823-6363 OR 1-800.827-6363 OR E-MAIL AT

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