Written by Hillsboro Free Press
Tuesday, 05 March 2013 14:15
The Hillsboro High School outlasted fellow Central Kansas League school Haven, 43-32, in the championship game of the Class 3A sub-state tournament Saturday to earn a fifth consecutive trip to the state tournament in the Hutchinson Sports Arena this week. The Trojans, seeded No. 1 at sub-state, will be the No. 4 team at state when they open play tonight (Wednesday) against No. 5 seeded Holcomb. Pictured above are: front row (from left), Tara Proffitt, Danae Bina, Addie Lackey, Alex...
Read more: Trojan girls heading back to state
Written by Patty Decker
Tuesday, 05 March 2013 14:14
The threat of a bomb scheduled to explode Friday, March 1, at USD 398 Peabody-Burns High School prompted action by school personnel and law enforcement officials at the local, county and state level.
Superintendent Ron Traxson said Monday a student at Peabody-Burns High School has been identified in connection with writing the bomb threat on a bathroom stall Feb. 14 identifying the afternoon of March 1 as the date and time the bomb would explode.
“Supposedly the person would blow up the...
Read more: Bomb threat results in student suspension
Written by Patty Decker
Tuesday, 05 March 2013 14:13
Phoebe Janzen of Florence took second place in the Wichita Eagle’s 12th annual Great Outdoors Photo Contest from a field of about 300 pictures in the adult division. Janzen said the winning picture was taken with her old camera and a 55mm to 75mm lens.
Phoebe Janzen of Florence won second place recently for her snapshot of three young screech owls and their mother, titled “Shhhh! Don’t Wake Mama!”
Competing against hundreds of other photographers in the Wichita Eagle’s 12th annual Great Outdoors Photo Contest, Janzen said she was surprised her photo was among the top 15 selected.
“I have my camera with me just about all of the time in case there is a unique photo opportunity,” she said.
“My poor husband (Steve) knows that...
Read more: Florence photographer captures prize image
Written by Don Ratzlaff
Tuesday, 05 March 2013 14:12
The two legislators representing the Hillsboro area expressed doubt about the effectiveness of the governor’s taxation plan during the legislative coffee hosted Saturday by the Hillsboro Chamber of Commerce.<p>About 10 people showed up at the Scout House in Memorial Park to hear what Sen. Jay Emler (R-Lindsborg) and Rep. Don Schroeder (R-Hesston) had to say.<p>For both men, this was their first legislative coffee in Hillsboro since the redistricting process changed the boundaries of their respective districts. <p>Emler has represented the western edge of Marion County, and for a time Hillsboro, in the past, but now represents all of Marion County as part of the 35th District.<p>Bob Brookens of Marion had been representing all of Marion County in the Kansas House as part of the 70th District. Following redistricting, Schroeder received Hillsboro and essentially southern Marion County as part of the 74th District.<p>Taxes and budget <p>The two legislators fielded a variety of questions, but several had to do with Gov. Sam Brownback’s plan to eliminate the state income tax, and the possible consequences of that move.<p>Schroeder said number crunchers in Topeka are projecting the state will fall $267 million short in revenue for the 2014 budget.<p>“Either we need more revenues coming in or we cut additional budgets,” Schroeder said. “The word is, no more revenues will be coming in.”<p>Schroeder and Emler agreed that additional budget cuts would hurt existing programs, and ultimately the state.<p>Emler highlighted the state corrections budget as one example.<p>“We were doing a great job stopping recidivism for awhile, but in the recession we had to cut the programs that were helping to keep people from returning to prison—teaching them to become carpenters, or take care of their drug problems while they were still in prison.<p>“We can’t do those things anymore.”<p>Both men said they did not share the governor’s proposition that eliminating the state income tax would bring more businesses and jobs to Kansas.<p>Schroeder said most businesses look at a state’s total tax package—which usually includes income, sales and property taxes.<p>Emler said elimination of the income tax will require higher property taxes to pay for state and local services. He said surveys indicate that 42-47 percent of people are most concerned about property tax, around 30 percent are concerned about sales tax and only 17 percent are concerned about income tax.<p>One reason property tax heads the list, both men said, is that people don’t have to pay income taxes if they aren’t generating income, but property taxes are required whether they are earning income or not.<p>Both men said they favored the “three-legged-stool” approach to raising state revenues, which means combining all three approaches at the lowest possible rates.<p>“Our income tax is low enough that it will not be a driver for business, in my opining,” Emler said. “If we have high property taxes, that’s going to be a disincentive to bring business to town.”<p>Hillsboro Mayor Delores Dalke said she supports the governor in general, but questioned the direction he was taking the state on the issue of tax revenue.<p>“It seems like he is pushing us on the local level to increase property taxes, which makes people unhappy,” she said. <p>“I’m in the real estate business, and I have people, when they come to town, say, ‘Oh my, your (property) taxes are high.’ Well, we’ve got the lowest taxes in Marion County, but they say it’s just too much.<p>“Consequently, we’ve got to do something other than push everything to property tax.”<p>Dalke also spoke against the governor’s proposal to eliminate the mortgage-interest deduction and the property-tax deduction.<p>“I know there’s a push for both of those, but please don’t let that happen,” she said.<p>Credibility issues<p>One participant asked the legislators if they were skeptical about the budget numbers the governor’s office has been using to promote its tax and budget initiatives.<p>“Yes, I’ve come across a lot of people who are very skeptical about the numbers,” Schroeder said. “I haven’t dug into it, but some incorrect numbers were used.”<p>Emler said, “Because of the way the last election went (with an increase of Tea Party Republicans), there was pretty broad support for the governor’s numbers and his policies. Having sat on the Budget Committee for as long as I did, when I heard those numbers, frankly I wasn’t sure they were right.<p>“And it turned out they weren’t right,” he added. “But I can’t say the governor is intentionally misleading us.”<p>Emler criticized the state’s budget director for blaming the error on staff members instead of accepting responsibility himself.<p>“Frankly, if I was the governor I would have been more stern with the budget director,” he said.<p>Other issues<p>Other topics that surfaced during the 1 hour, 20 minute gathering included the pros and cons of subsidizing renewable energy production with public dollars, pending changes in corporate-farm law, and the initiative to prevent tax dollars from being used to lobby legislators.<p>Emler challenged the logic of that last initiative.<p>“Frankly, there are 250 bills in the Senate right now, almost 400 in the House, so they’re talking about over 600 bills,” he said. “There’s no way in the world that anyone can have that many bills memorized. We have to have people who can come to us and make us aware of these bills and what that bill does (to their area of interest).”
The two legislators representing the Hillsboro area expressed doubt about the effectiveness of the governor’s taxation plan during the legislative coffee hosted Saturday by the Hillsboro Chamber of Commerce.
About 10 people showed up at the Scout House in Memorial Park to hear what Sen. Jay Emler (R-Lindsborg) and Rep. Don Schroeder (R-Hesston) had to say.
For both men, this was their first legislative coffee in Hillsboro since the redistricting process changed the boundaries of...
Read more: Small talk
Written by Don Ratzlaff
Tuesday, 26 February 2013 11:34
Marion County Commissioner Roger Fleming challenged the Hillsboro City Council during its Feb. 19 meeting to consider an idea for implementing single-stream recycling.
Fleming, a Hillsboro resident, shared the idea during the public-comment portion of the council meeting.
“I want to commend the city of Hillsboro for taking the initiative years ago to start recycling,” he said at the start. “I felt like (the city has) been a leader in recycling. However, we haven’t been a leader in...
Read more: Hillsboro asked to consider new recycling plan
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