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Friday, March 22, 2019

McGahey describes JCDA role to Ringling Trustees


Editor’s Note: This article appeared in the Ringling Eagle on October 25, 2018. A special thanks to Melissa Grace, editor of the Ringling Eagle, for allowing us to publish it here.

Trustees listened to Brian McGahey describe the role of the Jefferson County Development Authority, which was charted in May 2018, during the town board meeting on Monday, October 15.

McGahey said, “The goal of this development authority is to work together with all the communities in Jefferson County to make sure Jefferson county will rise and thrive. We want to stimulate the economic development of our county.”

“We want to see what each city has and bring it under the umbrella of the county,” McGahey said. “We want ot raise the tax base, attract more employees, and raise school attendance by having people move in.”

“We need a list of available buildings in each community that could be available for business,” McGahey said. “We’re gathering info up for a brochure on what Jefferson County has to offer. We need to know about each town’s infrastructure – water pressure, internet, etc. It’s a big thing to understand the infrastructure we have.”

“We’re willing to get involved with the city if you want us to help. I want my kids to have the opportunity to come back,” McGahey said.

McGahey is one of seven board members. Other board members of the public trust that reports to the Jefferson county commissioners included Lauren Nitschke, Brent Wade, Gary Duncan, Sharon Duncan, Carter Waid, and Dylan Sheffield.

“Jefferson County’s previous economic development board (JCEDA) had some IRS issues with a tax lien – which have been resolved. That entity has been shut down and this entity is a new entity with a complete new board,” McGahey said. “We are a volunteer board that meets the first Monday of each month at 2:00 pm. at the courthouse. We are looking at taking turns meeting in each of the Jefferson County towns.”

McGahey noted former Ardmore Development Authority director Wes Stuckey had spent a couple of hours with the new Jefferson County Development Board at a board meeting in early October.

Voter Registration Deadline: Jan 18


 Friday, January 18, is the last day to apply for voter registration in order to be eligible to vote in the February 12 Temple School District  Special Election Day, Jefferson County Election Board Secretary Tammy Richardson said today.

Richardson said that persons who are United States citizens, residents of Oklahoma, and at least 18 years old may apply to become registered voters.

Those who aren’t registered or need to change their registration may apply by filling out and mailing an Oklahoma Voter Registration Application form in time for it to be postmarked no later than midnight Friday, January 18.

Richardson said applications postmarked after that time will be accepted and processed, but not until after February 12.

The County Election Board responds in writing to every person who submits an application for voter registration.  The response is either a voter identification card listing the new voter’s precinct number and polling place location or a letter that explains the reason or reasons the application for voter registration was not approved.  Richardson said any person who has submitted a voter registration application and who has not received a response within 30 days should contact the County Election Board office.

Oklahoma Voter Registration Application forms are available at the County Election Board office located at 220 N. Main St., Rm #203, Waurika, OK, and at most post offices, tag agencies and public libraries in the county. Applications also are available at www.elections.ok.gov.

Waurika Library News January 10, 2019


How will Artificial Intelligence affect crime, war, justice, jobs, society and our very sense of being human? The rise of AI has the potential to transform our future more than any other technology—and there’s nobody better qualified or situated to explore that future than Max Tegmark, an MIT professor who’s helped mainstream research on how to keep AI beneficial.

 How can we grow our prosperity through automation without leaving people lacking income or purpose? What career advice should we give today’s kids? How can we make future AI systems more robust, so that they do what we want without crashing, malfunctioning or getting hacked? Should we fear an arms race in lethal autonomous weapons? Will machines eventually outsmart us at all tasks, replacing humans on the job market and perhaps altogether? Will AI help life flourish like never before or give us more power than we can handle?

 What sort of future do you want? ‘Life 3.0: Being Human in the Age of Artificial Intelligence’ empowers you to join what may be the most important conversation of our time. It doesn’t shy away from the full range of viewpoints or from the most controversial issues—from superintelligence to meaning, consciousness and the ultimate physical limits on life in the cosmos.

Don’t forget to use smile.amazon.com to support the Friends of the Waurika Library when you use Amazon.  It works just like Amazon with your existing account.  When you login, simply choose ‘Friends of the Waurika Public Library’ as the charity you would like to support.  Many events and programs at the library are supported by the Friends of the Waurika Public Library.  Sponsorship of the Friends starts at just $10.  For more information or to become a sponsor, please visit the Waurika Public Library.

Story Time is held every Wednesday at 10:00 a.m. for children and toddlers.  Each week we read stories, and have games and puzzles for the children to play with after reading.

For information about events, activities and more, visit our Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/WaurikaPublicLibrary/

Person Property Assessment Forms Mailed out; Due March 15th


The personal property assessment rendition forms were mailed out earlier this month.  Some forms have detailed information of your personal property.  If you have any additions or deletions, please write the information at the bottom of the form.  Due to some new guidelines set by the Oklahoma Tax Commission, all businesses will need to be itemized.  In the future, if we receive renditions without an itemized value, we will have to use the schedules provided by the OTC to determine a likely value for your business based on its type and size.

 New personal property tax assessments and existing assessment changes or without changes must be mailed or brought to the County Assessor’s office by March 15th or a ten percent penalty will be added to the total personal tax assessment.  This complies with Title 68, Oklahoma Statute 2001, Section 2836.  If you have torn down any buildings or sold any equipment, etc., please report this to the assessor’s office by March 15th.  If not reported, the personal property WILL NOT be taken off after tax statements are printed.

 If you have opened a new business or no longer own a business, please report this to the assessor’s office.  You also need to report any change of address.   

 New homesteads need to be applied for in person.  Property owners whose total household income does not exceed $20,000 for the 2018 calendar year may apply for a double homestead.  This expansion of the exemption is automatic if you are 65 years of age or older and you have already applied.  New and under 65 years of age must come in and apply every year.  If you are 65 before January 1, and make less than $44,900 annually, you can apply for a market value freeze on your homestead property.  Proof of income must be shown.  Double homesteads and senior freezes can only be done between January 1 and March 15.

Mobile home owners need to bring their title with them when assessing either as personal property or filing a homestead.  When filing for homestead, the title must be in the land owners name.

 This is also a good time for farmers to check their farm sales tax exempt card to see if it needs to be renewed.

The assessor will be visiting Ringling City Hall, Tuesday, January 22, from 10:00 a.m.-1:30 p.m.  You can report any changes, additions or deletions by calling (580)228-2377, email: jeffersonassr@sbcglobal.net or coming by the assessor’s office at 220 N. Main, Room 207 in Waurika at the courthouse, located on the second floor. 

Ryan Council Meeting – Shortest of the Year!


It was the shortest meeting of the year thus far. 

There were three members of the council present – Tammy Cotton, Lynda Kafer-Cain, and David Jackson. Also present was Kenzie Wheeler the Ryan Town Attorney.

The meeting began with a presentation from Ryan Piersol from the Oklahoma Municipal Power Association.

He was there to simply give an annual report to the town council. Of the many things he reported was that the chairman of OMPA, Charles Lamb, recently passed away. Lamb was also the mayor of Edmond, Oklahoma. Piersol said Lamb was highly respected and will be deeply missed. 

Council members approved the Treasurer’s Report (see below). 

Next, the bills, claims, and invoices for the town of Ryan were approved for payment. 

There being no new business the council meeting was adjourned. 

The Ryan Public Utilities Authority was dispensed with.

The final meeting was adjourned at 6:12 pm. 

Editor’s Note: Thank you for the brevity of the meeting. I was able to get back to Waurika and finish the paper in a timely manner. 

Westbrook Nursing Home News January 10, 2019


We hope everyone had a wonderful Happy New Year’s eve. We enjoyed a fun party with our decorated champagne glasses, drinking white grape juice and enjoying delicious snacks. We did a toast to good health. We didn’t make any New year’s Resolutions because we knew we would break them. 

We are enjoying some beautiful flower arrangements. A special thanks to Maynell Walker for sharing them with us. Our continued prayers for her and the family of Kenneth. He was a sweet, kind and caring man. 

Again, we would like to thank everyone who helped make our Christmas so wonderful from bringing cards, lotions, blankets and visits. 

We really appreciate you.

A few more names given to me were FCCLA and Mrs. Bruner, Stacy Dalton, Comanche School for the beautiful cards and Amber Samek for the Arborne lotion and candy canes in the festive socks. Thanks again. 

A special thanks to Harold Burden for the large bag of stuffed animals. 

We really appreciate Brother Mike and Peggy Bates and Ron Switzer for their faithfulness in coming every Monday for Bible Study and singing. Also to Joyce Garrett of Garrett’s Flower Shop for the beautiful flowers each month for our resident birthdays.

May everyone have a blessed, wonderful 2019.

Happy New Year from Westbrook.

Senior Profile: Katelyn Washburn


1. How do you feel about your last year? I am super excited to get to move on to bigger things in my life. Although, I am sad that I won’t get to stay a kid with little responsibilities anymore, I am excited.

2. Sum up your school experiences? I enjoyed school, it taught me more than what I thought it could have, and prepared me for a great future.

3. Activities/organizations you have participated in? I have cheered all four years, ran track my fresh. and soph. year, cross country my fresh. and soph. year, powerlifting my freshman year, FFA my fresh., soph and junior year, showed a goat my freshman year, yearbook and FCCLA and basketball my senior year.

4. Plans for the future? I plan on attending a college, cheerleading while I’m there and majoring in English.

5. Favorite memory at WHS? After the Empire football game, Colton and Gatlin dumped the water cooler on me while it was freezing cold outside.

6. What teacher class prepared you? Over the years I have enjoyed all of my English classes and all of the teachers that have helped me love English even more than I already did. I can’t wait to become an English teacher myself.

7. Give advice to an underclassman? Remember to have fun while you can, because high school ends in the blink of an eye.

8. Anyone you want to thank? I want to think my mom and dad for pushing me to be the best I could be. I would also like to think the rest of my family and friends.

9. Do you have a fear about leaving? I do not want to grow up and be an adult. I love high school and I’m afraid to move on past it, although I feel it is not as bad as I make it out to be.

10.  Are you going to miss being at WHS?  Yes, even though I moved here my senior year everyone has been so great to me and I gained so many friends and I am sad that I did not get to know them longer.

Waurika Teachers Go to School


 Kristina Torrez, Waurika EMS, speaks to the Waurika teaching staff about dealing with students who are seriously wounded. Leah Newton, from the Jefferson County Hospital, assisted in the presentation. The Waurika Police Dept. and Sheriff’s Office participated in preparing teachers to deal with emergencies. 

Rachel Masoner, Waurika High School teacher, learns hot to apply a tourniquet to an open wound with Leah Newton of Jefferson County Hospital.

Ron Howard Visits Mrs. Cook


 Ron Howard is more than just a famous actor (Happy Days and the Andy Griffith Show), and a director from Hollywood. He is also related to Waurika’s Elementary Principal, Mrs. Patricia Cook, by marriage. 

Cook’s husband Bill is a cousin of Howard. He called during December and said he wanted to visit Duncan and see the hospital where he was born and other places related to his childhood. 

The Cooks picked up Howard from the airport and brought him back to their home in Duncan.

They spent an afternoon together. 

Cook said Howard is down to earth, very thoughtful and pleasant to talk to.

Waurika Library News January 3 2019


The world’s oil supply is vanishing, the stock market is plummeting, and the key to saving the future seems to be a baffling historical mystery. Can the NUMA crew crack it in time? ‘Sea of Greed’ is the suspenseful new NUMA Files novels from the #1 New York Times-bestselling master of adventure, Clive Cussler.

After an explosion in the Gulf of Mexico destroys three oil rigs trying to revive a dying field, Kurt Austin and the NUMA Special Projects Team are tapped by the President of the United States to find out what’s gone wrong. The trail leads them to a brilliant billionaire in the alternative energy field. Her goal is the end of the oil age; her company has spent billions developing the worlds’ most advanced fuel-cell systems. But is she an environmental hero…or a rogue genetic engineer?

The NUMA crew discovers that the oil fields are infected with bacteria that are consuming the oil before it can be pumped out of the earth–a bacteria originally lost decades ago when two submarines vanished in the Mediterranean.

With hired killers on his trail, can Kurt Austin locate a submarine that’s remained hidden for more than fifty years? And even if he can, can the biological terror that’s been unleashed be stopped?  Check out ‘Sea of Greed’ from the Waurika Public Library.

Christmas may be over but you can still use smile.amazon.com to support the Friends of the Waurika Library when you use Amazon throughout the year.  It works just like Amazon with your existing account.  When you login, simply choose ‘Friends of the Waurika Public Library’ as the charity you would like to support.

For information about events, activities and more, visit our Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/WaurikaPublicLibrary/


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