5 years ago (Jan. 7, 2009)

Ten years ago

n The first storm of 1999 brought ice and frigid temperatures across Marion County Jan. 2. Precipitation that fell Friday was officially ?not measurable,? but the freezing mist played havoc with roads and highways.

n A half dozen people turned out for a public hearing in Hillsboro on whether to add fluoride to the city water supply. Following the hearing, which included resident opposition, the Hillsboro City Council tabled a vote until it received more information.

n An oversupply of hogs nationwide has driven market prices to 40- to 50-year lows, making it difficult for local producers to sustain their operations. One local farmer said he received a low of 11.5 cents per pound; he estimated he needs a price of 31.5 cents just to cover feed costs and basic expenses.

n Micah Ratzlaff, a 1998 graduate of Hillsboro High School, is getting limited playing time as a freshman on the basketball team at Tulsa University, an NCAA Division I school.

five years ago

n Calvin Riggs, 18, a senior at Marion High School, died Jan. 4 from complications related to a car accident earlier in the day. Riggs apparently lost control of the car he was driving on the way home from Florence.

n Two historic Russian black cherry trees, donated by the Siegfried and Lois Snyder family of Wichita, were planted on the grounds near the Pater Paul Loewen House at the Mennonite Settlement Museum in Hills?boro. The two trees were offspring of trees planted in 1877 by the family?s pioneer ancestors.

n Marion County commissioners were urged by Stan Thiessen, representing the South Central Kansas Economic Development District, to hire an economic development director as soon as possible in order to give the county a voice in an emerging regional partnership model of economic development in Kansas.

n The county commissioners unanimously approved the creation of a six-member volunteer task force to research economic opportunities for the county. The first three appointees were: Steve Garrett, Hillsboro; Peggy Blackman, Marion; and Carolyn Koehn, Peabody. Bruce Wells of the U.S. Department of Agricul?ture?s Resource Conservation and Development program, was asked to be the coordinator. The task force?s first report is due in 45 days.

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