Newspaper Archive of
Cuba Free Press
Cuba, Missouri
January 29, 2004     Cuba Free Press
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January 29, 2004

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The Week of Thursday, January 29, 2004 Crawford County's Only State and National Blue Ribbon Award Newspaper Winner of 97 Awards. in Journalism This Week s defense too for Saint Clair Page I B little store the prairie Page 12B gUp Cuba City Council will at 5:30 p.m. Monday at The meeting is open Public. The state of Missouri will its Presidential on Tuesday. Be sure to and vote! Uba Middle School will Student Talent Show at P.m. Feb. 5 in the CMS The public is invit- ay L.I I day Iw-21 her Friday High-34 Low- 12 Sunday High-38 Low- 16 :tory ...................... 2-3C .................. 6C ds ... ................. 5-9B .................... 4C i ................ 4B IC ........................ 5C ........................ 2B .......................... 4A ............................ 6A ............................ IB "4 & NNA member Printed on Recycled Paper Defending Your U S-'( Liberties .) Since 1960 iJN00m/i County will appeal judges" order By Chris Case interest of the county to approve the jail opened last year They re asking ty's road and bridge crews. The new us to raise salaries when we don't even know for sure how much it'll cost to run the new jail this year." Judges J. Max Price and William Camm Seay of the 42nd Circuit Court ordered the commission to increase salaries for every member of the Sheriff's Department, including the jail staff, to bring the department's pay plan in line with that of the coun- proposed raises and additional per- sonnel, which w6uld come at an annu- al cost of about $160,000, not includ- ing benefits. "How many more promotions will there be in the future, if we wer$ to approve this?" asked Presiding Commissioner Ed Worley. "How many more people will we have to hire? This thing has been out of control since the Assistant Editor The county commission has decid- ed to appeal a court order requiring that Sheriff's Department employees receive salary increases in 2004 and four new positions be added to the staff. Commissioners agreed Monday that it was not in the best financial Lost trucker ends up in creek Chrla Cam photo A tractor-trailer loaded with transformer parts attempted to cross the Jake's Prairie Bridge but turned over Sunday night, spilling into Brush Creek. The bridge was partially damaged and scheduled for Inspection this week, but still open at press time Tuesday. The driver was not seriously hurt In the accident. pay plan is based on individual per- formance, years of service, experi- ence, training requirements, respon- sibilities, and position within the department. The order also called for the hiring of two more deputies, a part-time bailiff, and an assistant administrator. Judge Seay had told the commis- See COUNTY APPEALING page 2A One dead following shooting By Chris Case Assistant Editor One person is dead, another critically injured, and a third in jail on charges of murder, following a shooting incident on Sappington Bridge Road last week. John Belfield, 25, of the Pea Ridge area near Sullivan, suf- fered a gunshot wound to the groin area around midnight last Thursday, and later died in a St. Louis hospital. The Crawford County Sheriff's Department reports that Belfield was leaving a res- idence on Sappington Bridge Road with Rhonda Stabener, 40, when Charles R. Hardy, 53, of Bourbon, allgedly fired a sin- gle shot at Belfield with a v- Sage Japanese World War II . rifle from about 30 feet. The bullet entered Belfield's lower torso, passed through his body, and into the chest of Stabener, who was behind him at the time. Hardy, who lives nearby on Klines Farm Road, allgedly made the 911 call to report he'd just shot two people. See SHOOTING page 2A City gas customers can soon expect to pay higher prices ! w By Christy Hahn Staff Write# The Cuba City Council approved the Natural Gas Committee's recommendation at last week's meeting to increase the cost of natural gas to a floating price, capped off at $1.21, until June 30. The will city was unable as the city to lock in an have a acceptable The price last year the and has been losing money met by charging on a $1.10. "It's some- thing we can't foresee. The market fluctuates now so much, we don't know what it's going to do---neither does Gary Englemeier said, "It's comparable to propane prices. If it reaches the top peak at $1.21, it's right at $1.11 propane, which is still comparable." A cost-plus scenario will be used; the city will charge the school and retirement homes (Forest ManorApartments) 10 cents above cost. The cost will fluctuate according to how much the city is charged starting with the next billing cycle. Englemeier checked with surrounding areas to compare gas prices. The range was $1.20 to $1.34. The $1.34 included a $9 meter charge. Cuba has a $7 meter charge only for industrial and large meter upkeep. In addition to unsatisfactory gas prices, this winter's somewhat mild weather has affected usage. The city's natural gas usage is 9 million cubic feet short of what it was last year. Once the city finds a satisfactory price, it will be locked in. Last year's natural gas prices weren't locked in until October. "We're trying to get the best price we can," our gas marketer," Natural Gas Supervisor Englemeier said. Council still hoping to get money for downtown revitalization plan By Christy Hahn Staff Writer The city of Cuba has not yet received an award announcement concerning a Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) applied for last year for downtown revitalization. Meramec Regional Planning Commission representatives, Chuck Cantrell and Leslie Bannish attended the January 20 council meetirig to inform city officials of additional upcoming grant opportunities. city and MRPC will obtain personal infor- mation (from homeowners) regarding income level, age of their house and what they would like to do as far as repairs. Then we'll apply for the grant," Public Works Director Bob Baldwin said. The council approved Baldwin to move forward with grant application. Currently in the process of evaluating possible projects, the city is keeping the May 15 application deadline in mind. CDBG Neighborhood Development Block Grants are not exclusive to any particular See GRANT page 2A Scbo ) I wen't float lev), until summer By Christy Hahn Staff Writer u The majority of R-2 School Board members stated their hesitation to run a tax levy increase before knowing what will happen at the close of the state legislative session in May during last week's board meet- ing. Troy Foster was the only board member voicing his con- cern about waiting until a later date. "April is a better time. We need to be proactive if the pro ration factor stays at .75. If we're reactive, we'll have no chance to respond and it will be too late to do something," Foster said, "The cumulative effect is my biggest concern. We could go downhill fast." Secretary Mary Miller con- firmed April as being the past most successful attempt at passing a tax increase. President Joe Cason, Jerry McLain, Gary Mace, Sandra Farris, Kellie Reed agreed against trying for the April bal- lot. McLain suggested the possi- bility of trying to pass an emer- gency funding issue with a sunset clause. "For example, raise it $1 for 5 years. It's diffi- cult to pass a levy that's big enough. Either the state steps See SCHOOL page 2A Arson, mesh charges are file, t against two By Chris Case According to police, after . Assistant Editor being read her Miranda rights, Clarissa Dawn Schoenbeck, 25, Two people face felony charges in connection with a mobile home fire, which authorities say was purpose- fully set near Cuba last week. Investigating an alleged burglary on Jan. 20, a trooper from the Missouri State Highway Patrol responded to a trailer park residence on Route 66 belonging to Joshua James Trautwein, 24. Upon arriving with a search warrant that morning, the trooper discov- ered his trailer already burn- ing. admitted to setting the fire in order to destroy scales an.d other items inside the home used to produce methampheta- mine. Several of the alleged stolen items were later found in'a shed and inside the burned trailer. Schoenbeck was taken into custody and charged with first degree arson and manufactur- ing a controlled substance (meth). Trautwein has been charged with second degree burglary and manufacturing a controlled substance (meSh).