Commentary

Wed
01
Nov
Edgar's picture

Health insurance, medical costs likely to continue to increase

by CYNTHIA SCHEER 

Health insurance was a prime topic at the county commissioners’ meeting Monday. I listened as commissioners discussed the catastrophic plan they have now, which, in a nutshell, has little to no coverage until the $10,000 deductible has been met. Some employees are upset because they now have to pay a portion of the premium for a plan that does little for them, commissioners said.

I have heard rumblings that the previous county health insurance plan was a Cadillac plan and offered a very low deductible with little to no cost to the employees. The switch from that to the current plan was an unpleasant shock for many, it sounds.

Wed
25
Oct
Edgar's picture

Part of my family’s life, gone forever

By DAN THALMANN

I’ve lost the pictorial memories of a small part of my family’s life, all because I didn’t take the time to do what I knew was necessary.

I recently had an external hard drive go bad. This is a small piece of equipment, not too much larger than a man’s wallet, that can store digital files outside of a computer. Like a large memory card, I had an extensive archive of my family photos, in folders by month and year, as well as the digital archives of everything that has gone into this newspaper for the last several years, organized by issue date.

Wed
25
Oct
Edgar's picture

Pork industry boosts economy

By CYNTHIA SCHEER

In this week’s issue we celebrate Pork Month, which comes around every October. I’ve done several stories for Pork Month over the years. When I worked for the Washington County News back in my early days after graduating from college I traveled north of Linn to the Voelkers to feature their dirt lot pigs.

I’ve been a farm girl all of my life, and like many farm families, my dad even raised some pigs when I was quite young. But the extent of my interaction with pigs nowadays comes at the county fair each summer, and that’s just not the same as seeing them on the farm.

 

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Wed
18
Oct
Edgar's picture

Legislators will have their hands full with education funding

By Travis Mounts 

We’re about three months away from the start of the 2018 Kansas legislative session, and once again school funding will dominate the proceedings.

I’ll warn you now: You will get tired of reading about it. We’ll get tired of writing about it. It’s going to be grind on everybody, including our elected officials.

I had the chance to be part of an early discussion about the topic last Friday as I joined State Reps. John Whitmer (R-Wichita) and Brandon Whipple (D-Wichita) on “Kansas Week,” the local public affairs program on KPTS Channel 8 in Wichita.

 

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Wed
18
Oct
Edgar's picture

A method to weekly newspaper creation

by CYNTHIA SCHEER 

It’s very difficult to explain what goes into the makings of the weekly newspaper, but I’m going to try. Many years ago before I started working for the paper I used to shake my head in confusion at the paper. I have since found that there is a reason for the way we do things.

When it comes to covering events and taking photos, we are not a 12-person, 24-hour crew. There are only a few of us who can take a photo, and there are only about two of us – Dan and me – who do story/event coverage after business hours. I’ve done a few feature story interviews after 5 p.m. because that’s the most convenient time for the person involved AND it didn’t disrupt my life greatly AND I really wanted to get the story.

Tue
10
Oct
Edgar's picture

USDA Rural Development offers financing for communities, businesses

By John Forshee

This past week, I had the opportunity to sit in on an educational session offered by Jessica Bowser, USDA Rural Development Kansas. It was a great session and so I wanted to share a bit of what is available through USDA with our readers.

The USDA Rural Development Mission is to help improve the economy and quality of life in rural America. They achieve this mission through the over forty loan and grant programs that are offered under four main categories: Business Programs, Community Programs, Housing Programs, and Utilities Programs.

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Tue
10
Oct
Edgar's picture

Reflecting on the first three months

By CYNTHIA SCHEER

I’ve been back to the Washington County News for almost three months now, and what a fast three months it has been.

I realized a couple days ago that Washington County students are finishing up their “First nine weeks,” or first quarter, of school. This means the school year is already a fourth over. This is crazy to me.

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Wed
04
Oct
Edgar's picture

Disguising our scars?

By ELIZABETH ROGGE

Removing historical statues will not erase history. I don’t understand why so many people, although not the majority, want these statues destroyed.

It appears this movement has snowballed to such a degree that some people want to destroy any visible evidence from our past that offends them.

 

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Wed
04
Oct
Edgar's picture

I’m hunting for limestone structures

By CYNTHIA SCHEER

I had one of my favorite days at work last week when Jim Smart took me on a tour of rural Hanover.

I should preface this column by saying that I have been photographing and documenting stone buildings for about three years now. It started when I worked for the Belleville newspaper. I thought there were only a handful of stone buildings in Republic County, so I set out to feature them all. I’ve done about 30 of them in Republic County now, and I suspect I’ve only done a fraction of them. I hope to work on a bunch more this fall and winter as a freelance project.

 

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Wed
27
Sep
Edgar's picture

Prepared for the next disaster

by JOE PHILLIPS 

What did we learn?

There was ample time to prepare for the arrival of “Irma,” or what was left of her. My list was short. I bought a new bottle of bleach and made sure the chain saw was fueled and ready to go.

That is a paltry survival list but a person can survive a long time without food but only a few days without drinkable water.

The bleach sterilizes water (about 10 drops per gallon) and the chain saw is for cleaning up.

 

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