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Sidney Herald
Sidney , Montana
March 6, 2013     Sidney Herald
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March 6, 2013

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1 24 WEDNESDAY, MARCH. 6, 2013 From page one SIDNEY HERALD FROM PAGE IA Bills in the works to address oil, gas impacts Sidney Superintendent of Schools Daniel Farr talked about some items that are vital for schools includ- ing a data-for-achievement payment of $20 per student; increasing the amount a school district may request for a bond; and if a school district reaches its maxi- mum amount of oil and gas revenue the money would go to a neighboring district - for example if the Sidney High School district reaches its maximum, more funding can go to the Sidney elemen- tary district. Farr said the state could work with Senate Bill 175 as a two-year model. If the bill works, then leave as is. If the bill doesn't, then fine tune it. In other topics during Fri- day's town hall meeting: Rosendale said there are currently two bills that will assist cities with infra- structure costs because of oil-impacted factors One bin, upon the gov- ernor's request, appears headed to the Department of Commerce. Rosendale would rather have the Board of Off and Gas direct the funds. Sidney Mayor Bret Smels- er says he believes funds will be $110-$120 million for hard infrastructure needs. BILL VANDER WEELE I SIDNEY HERALD Rep. David Halvorson and Sen. Matt Rosendale listen to local feedback during the townhall meeting Friday while legislators were on transmittal break. the board would be allowed to di- the facility has lost about rect the funds instead of the $300,000 this year. He said re- Department of Commerce. ceiving the additional funds "I don't think there's much may not help Extended Care hope, I may be wrong, that it directly but would greatly will go to oil and gas."expand the people who are Rosendale hopes two eligible for Medicaid. major projects - bypasses for Pierce said Sidney Health Sidney and Culbertson- are Center is having a real chal- moved up on the Department lenge with uncompensated of Transportation's list. He care, mainly because of said federal TIGER moneyuninsured individuals. He 'We're left as the could be utilized for the asked legislators to "hold truck routes, your nose and look at that red-headed stepchild Although there's an bill." estimated surplus of $340 Rosendale said there's not out there. ' million, the state has more a lot of enthusiasm for the than a $4 billion deficit in the expansion of Medicaid. He state's public employee and said he doesn't feel it would Bret Smelser teacher retirement pension be good for the state in the plan. long run. Rosendale said that Sidney moyor Former state legislator already 41 percent of the Don Steinbeisser warned,state's funding comes from "It's heading for a wreck." the federal government. "We can build a lagoon, but Rosendale explained the Cindy Eleson, executive can't monitor it." Smelser system needs to be changed, director of Richland Op- said he would like funds to Currently, participants are portunities Inc., noted the be available to help pay for guaranteed a certain amount problems ROI has experi- emergency services such as regardless of what the mar- enced when Medicaid went more police officers or fire ket does. He said now is the back to 2009 rates two years department expenses, time to negotiate. He expects ago. "Montana has an obliga- The mayor said funding minor changes to be madetion in my mind to support is about half or two-thirds this session, people who are vulnerable of what impacted cities and Dr. Edward Pierce dis-and in need of assistance." towns need. "We're left as cussed the state's opportuni- Rosendale said that it's two the red-headed stepchild ty to receive increased Med- separate issues of accepting out there. Grant money will icaid federal funds. He said expanded Medicaid funds build some infrastructure, he doesn't like the Afford- from the federal government but we still need some gen- able Care Act, but it's the law and increasing Medicaid eral fund money. .... and we're stuck with it." funding. He believes in as- Smelser said he would be Pierce noted Sidney Health sistance for those who can't willing to resign from the Center Extended Care isn't help themselves. Board of Oil and Gas if the able to be fully staffed and Cities consider Mid-Rivers call-monitoring offer BY LOUISA BARBER spokeswoman Erin Lutts shooting and recent events SIDNEY HERALD said. It's all on a voluntary in Montana. process. "The goal is to be Sidney Police Chief Frank The city of Sidney and proactive in terms of ifDiFonzo said the depart- town of Fairview are each there would be emergencyment's been working with considering a proposal on the cooperative for years whether to sign a contract Letters had been sent when it receives information with Mid-Rivers Communi- of a threat of any kind. cations to allow it to monitor topublic entities in "I think it's a good idea," phone calls, he said. By entering into an The telephone/Internet co- light of the December agreement, the city will have operative, upon permission, given prior permission for will trace and track phone law enforcement to access calls and keep them logged Connecticut shooting, phone records. "It makes it in a database ready for law + a lot easier when requesting enforcement's use. It's part phone records. It's one step of a service that's being situations at any type of we're not going to have to do. provided for schools, court- public building...and assist Let's get something ahead of houses, city halls and other law enforcement." time." public buildings within the Lutts was not authorizedThe city council was sup- Mid-Rivers service area. to go into detail about how it posed to discuss a recom- '!Given the recent events in works for security reasons mendation on Monday, but public entities, we're trying but said letters had been sent the meeting was cancelled to be proactive in helping to public entities in light of due to weather. people out," Mid-Rivers the December Connecticut Engagement BRAUER- HILLESLAND John and Kathy Brauer, Missoula, announce the engagement of their daugh- ter Tarah Caitlin Brauer to Terran Michael Hillesland, son of Chris Hillesland and Therese Forbes, Sidney. Tarah is a a first-grade teacher. Terran is a plant op- erator for Hiland Partners. A July 13, 2013, wedding is planned in Ronan. tooko Community grieves loss of EMS director Richland County resi- pronounced dead. Rich- within our communities. dents are grieving the loss land County Coroner JohnFuneral services are of Richland County EMS Dynneson said Monday at 2 p.m. Thursday at the director Josh King who died the cause of King's death Richland County Event unexpectedly Sunday. is unknown and could take Center under the direction Authorities say ambu- several weeks before it is of Fulkerson Funeral Home lance crews were called released, of Sidney. Sunday at approximately King had been working Memorials may be made 12:30 p.m. to his home. as the emergency services to the Richland County Am- He was taken to Sidney director since July 2006bulance Service or a charity Health Center where he was and has touched many lives of one's choice. of Richland & Girls Club of Richland MARCH 18TH - 7:30pm OPEN HOUSE with meal at 5:30 pm ' Come see what your community has accomplished! What is your vision of Richland County in 2020? Here is your chance to share solutions for Richland County at the Richland County Event Center . MARCH 1 9TH " 4pm m : OPEN HOUSE 0 at 8:30 am with light e breakfast and lunch Where do we go from here? ". Let's make a Plan . Lunch What action do we take? t "V" Guest Speakers: Dan Clark, Director of Local Government Center MSU Extension Karen Ray of Karen Ray Associates Karen Ray will present a workshop on Collaboration We are asking Richland County Community Members, Community Service Groups, Businesses, Policy Makers, and those vested in our community to all come together to ensure...