In “Getting to know your Chickasha Fire Department we meet 20 year Chickasha CFD veterian Driver Todd Smith.
Saturday, June 30th
Three-Alarm Fire at Chickasha's Industrial Park
A fire breaks out at a Chickasha firm that manufactures cardboard shipping containers. It was a three-alarm fire at Green Bay Packaging Company, in the city's industrial park near the Chickasha schools bus barn. The fire started just after 5:30 p.m. Friday and fire departments from Anadarko and Tuttle were summoned to help in beating back the flames. Chickasha fire chief Brian Zalewski.
One person was in an office when the fire started and she was able to escape without injury. Officials traced the fire to a large 8-foot-by-8-foot-by-10-foot compressor inside the large one-story metal frame building. A damage estimate was not available.
One in Custody Following 7-Hour Manhunt
A manhunt in western Grady County Thursday night. More than a dozen law enforcement officials were part of the nearly seven-hour search. Verden police, state troopers, Grady and Caddo county sheriff's deputies, and the Bureau of Indian Affairs searched a wide area from north of Verden to Lake Chickasha. The highway patrol brought in a helicopter and deputies also had the help of a K9 officer. The manhunt stemmed from a traffic stop made about 7:00 p.m. Thursday. An officer is alleged to have discovered drugs and a weapon in the vehicle and handcuffed the driver and two passengers. One of the passengers fled on foot still in handcuffs. Officials found 22-year old Angel Jimenez of Andarko about 2:00 a.m. Friday about a mile from where the traffic stop was made. Caddo County authorities had just issued an arrest warrant for Jimenez earlier Thursday. He pleaded guilty to burglary charges out of Anadarko last year, and was wanted for an application to impose judgement and sentence. Jimenez was given a five-year deferred sentence. Jimenez is now in the Grady County Jail where he is being held on complaints including escape from arrest and drug possession. The driver of the car, 21-year old Jacy Wall, is being held on complaints of drug possession and speeding. The other passenger was not arrested.
Two Injured in Apache Shooting
Details are scarce regarding a shooting in Caddo County this week. Two people were transported to hospitals after the shooting, which occurred at a home on the east edge of Apache Thursday night. Reports indicated that one person was taken to an Oklahoma City hospital, and the other to a hospital in Lawton. Their names and conditions are not known. Apache police, the Caddo County Sheriff's office and OSBI were all part of the initial investigation. Unconfirmed reports are that the shooting victims are related, and that one may have shot the other. Apache police have not been available for comment.
Talk Show Topic
Here's what we're talking about this weekend. Angie Doss with the Regional Food Bank is on our KOOL Konversation program. She'll be discussing the free summer food programs available to youth in the region, and the farm-to-food bank program. There is a link to the program under the Community tab on this website..
Friday, June 29th
Oil Well One of the State's Top Producers
Grady County has one of the largest producing oil wells in Oklahoma this week. The well northeast of Cement was bringing in more than 2,300 barrels of oil a day. The Schenk Trust No. 1-17HXL belongs to Unit Petroleum. The well was completed in January. The website www.okenergytoday.com reports it's among eight completed wells in the county. The well is one of many in the SCOOP play which includes much of Grady, McClain, and Garvin counties. There were big producers in the STACK play, too. Devon Energy also had a well producing more than 2,300 barrels of oil a day north of Watonga. Cimarex Energy and Continental Resources had wells producing well over 1,100 barrels of oil a day, also in the Watonga area.
Attorney General Backs PSO Tax Cut Ruling
Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter backs a recommendation that Public Service Company of Oklahoma (PSO) pass its federal income tax cut on to its customers. Administrative law judge Mary Candler made the recommendation. Hunter wants the Oklahoma Corporation Commission to act on the ruling as soon as possible. Hunter said the tax cut provides an opportunity for real savings for PSO customers, especially with rising utility bills during the heat of the summer. If approved, it's estimated that the average PSO residential customer would get about $24. School districts and business would also see energy savings.
U.S. Senate OK's Farm Bill; Inhofe, Lankford Vote Against It
The U.S. Senate has passed its version of the farm bill, but both Republican Oklahoma senators, Jim Inhofe and James Lankford, voted against it. Inhofe says that he was sure the bill was going to pass, but said many senators try to add un-necessary changes.
Inhofe says that 80 percent of the farm bill is connected to welfare, and particularly SNAP benefits. He said liberals measure compassion by the number of people on welfare, and that conservatives measure compassion by the number of people who get off of welfare. The farm bill will now go to a house and senate conference committee.
Bulls and Barrel Racing Abound
Some of the top bull riders in the three-state region will be in Chickasha looking to earn a big paycheck. The Firecracker Bull Bash is a one-night event at the Grady County Fairgrounds tomorrow night. 40 riders and 40 bulls will come out of the chutes, with the riders gunning for $3,000 in added money. One of the promoters is two-time Texas state bull-riding champ, Tanner Biddy. The other is Jason Cox of Blanchard.
The Firecracker Bull Bash is at 7:00 p.m. Saturday at the outdoor arena on the Grady County Fairgrounds. Tickets are $8 at the gate; seniors 65 and over $4; and children 12-and-under are free. The same promoters are putting on one of richest barrel-racing competitions at the fairgrounds tomorrow morning. About 200 contestants of all ages are expected to compete for $3,000 added money in that event as well. There is free admission to the Firecracker Barrel Bash, which starts at 10:00 a.m. Saturday.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX climbs to $73.45 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude rises to $77.85.
Natural gas was down to $2.94 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,252 and silver is $16.11
Thursday, June 28th
Unemployment Up Slightly in Grady County; Steady Statewide
Oklahoma's jobless rate remains at a very low level. Unemployment was steady from April to May at 4 percent. In Grady County the jobless rate was up slightly, from 3.3 percent in April to 3.5 percent in May. It’s down compared to May of last year, when unemployment was 4.2 percent. The Oklahoma Employment Security Commission reports that Grady County's total labor force is more than 26,300 workers. Of those, 924 were out of work and actively seeking employment through that state agency. In surrounding areas, Caddo County unemployment was 4 percent; Comanche County, 4.3 percent; Stephens County, 4.8 percent; Garvin County, 3.8 percent; and McClain County, 3.2 percent.
Woman Sought for Theft of Deputy's Credit Card
Caddo County authorities are looking for a woman accused of two crimes - one for stealing a deputy sheriff's credit card and the other for running a con game on a dating website. An arrest warrant has been issued for 22-year old Seneca Eufamia Wilder. She is charged with felonies that include bogus checks, taking or receiving stolen credit cards, and using a computer while committing a crime. She's also facing a misdemeanor charge of unauthorized use of a credit card The Lawton Constitution reports Wilder is accused of implementing the con game with a man from Texas on the Sugar Daddy website.
Energy Group Honors Halliburton
Halliburton is recognized by a state energy group. The Oklahoma Independent Petroleum Association awarded its annual Partner Award to the Houston-based firm, which has operations in Duncan. Halliburton is the first two-time recipient of the award. OIPA officials say Halliburton does extraordinary work in the community, disaster relief, and responds every time they are needed. Halliburton will celebrate 100 years in business next year. It's one of the world's largest providers of products and services to the energy industry, which employs more than 55,000 people worldwide.
Long-time Career Tech Administrator to Retire
A 40-year career in education will be celebrated later this summer. Greg Winters is retiring after spending nearly his entire adult life in the career tech field. For the last several years, Winters has been the superintendent for Canadian Valley Technology Center campuses in Chickasha, El Reno, and Yukon. Winters legacy will be leading the El Reno campus through the destruction left behind in what is believed to be the largest tornado on record - a 2 1/2 mile wide tornado spinning at more than 300 miles per hour - that destroyed nearly every building on the campus five years ago. Winters will be honored at a retirement roast on the El Reno campus on August 7th. It's called the Rock Around the Clock 2018 World Tour.
Local Student Earns Trip to Washington, D.C.
A Grady County 4Her is home after a visit to the nation's capital. Beth Armstrong was part of this year's Citizenship Washington Focus. It's a 10-day trip that included tours of numerous landmarks and learning about how they can help their own communities.
Armstrong said the Oklahoma 4H delegation received a $500 grant which will be used to make blankets and other items for children who are placed in protective custody.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $72.76 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $77.62.
Natural gas is $2.99 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,252 and silver is $16.16
Wednesday, June 27th
Kory Kirkland Wins District Judge Post
Grady and Caddo County voters opt to keep Kory Kirkland as District Judge. Kirkland defeated two candidates to win the judicial election in Tuesday's primary election. Kirkland picked up nearly 54 percent of the vote over challengers Ryland Rivas II and Doug Carel. Kirkland garnered 10,282 votes of the more than 19,000 cast. Rivas II and Carel nearly split the remaining votes. Carel received 4,502 or 23.5 percent and Rivas collected 4,387 or 23 percent. Kirkland was appointed to the post by Gov. Mary Fallin in May of 2017 following the retirement of Richard Van Dyck. Kirkland will serve a four-year term beginning in January.
Incumbent County Commissioners Will be in Run-offs
Two incumbent Grady County commissioners were forced into a run-off in the primary. In District 3, incumbent Ralph Beard will face fellow Democrat Lee Dorman in the August run-off. Dorman picked up about 100 more votes - 1,009 or 47 percent - while Beard received 905 or 42 percent. A third candidate, Jefferey Cramer, received 214 or 11 percent. Beard and Dorman will face off in the August 28th run-off. The winner will be the District Three commissioner since no Republicans filed for the office. In District One, Republican incumbent Windle Hardy will be in a run-off with Michael Walker. The two men finished within five votes of each other. Hardy received 1,236 votes, or 37.8 percent. Walker received 1,231 votes or 37.6 percent. A third candidate, Billy Clapper, picked up 736 tallies or 25 percent. Hardy and Walker will meet in the August run-off, with that winner being elected. No Democrats filed for the office.
Caddo County Assessor Ekes Out Primary Win
In Caddo County, assessor Edward Whitworth held off a Democratic challenger, and will go on to the November general election. Whitworth picked up 53 percent of the vote in defeating Kelly Caye Ratzlaff. Whitworth wil face Republican challenger Belita Jo Lee Byrd in November.
Liquor-by-the-Drink Passes in Caddo County
Caddo County voters also passed liquor-by-the-drink. The measure passed with more than 65 percent approval - 4,045 to 2,239.
McClain County Commissioner Election Results
In McLain County, Terry Daniel will be the new county commissioner in District 3. Daniel won the Republican primary in a close race, defeating Jim McClain by 70 votes, 991 to 921, or 52 percent of the vote. There were no Democratic candidates. Daniel will take over for Shorty Foster. In District One, Republican Glen Murray will face Democrat Larry Davis for the seat in November. Murray defeated Chuck Spray in the GOP primary with 64 percent of the vote, 996 to 562. Davis defeated Chris Sheehy in the Democratic primary by 35 votes, 670 to 635, or 51 percent of the vote.
State Rep. Scooter Park Defeated By Toni Hasenbeck
In state legislative races, State Representative Scooter Park in House District 65 was defeated in the Republican primary in a close race with Toni Hasenbeck of Elgin. Hasenbeck won by 124 votes, 1,738 to 1,624 or just under 52 percent. Hassenbeck will go on to face Democrat Brandon Thompson of Cyril who defeated challenger Sonia England of Elgin with 64 percent of the vote – 2,123 to 1,135. Park served two terms in the state house. He was elected in 2014.
Cornett, Stitt Advance in Governor's Race; Lt. Gov. Lamb Out
In gubernatorial races, in what many consider an upset, Lt. Gov. Todd Lamb did not make the Republican run-off. Lamb finished third in the voting against the top two contenders, former OKC Mayor Mick Cornett, and Tulsa businessman, Kevin Stitt. They will face off in the August run-off. Former attorney general Drew Edmondson obtained 65 percent majority in the Democratic gubernatorial vote, defeating Connie Johnson. Edmondson will be on the November ballot.
Oklahoma Voters Say 'Yes' to Medical Marijuana
Oklahoma will have legalized medical marijuana. SQ 788 passed with nearly 57 percent of the statewide vote. In Grady and Caddo counties, SQ 788 barely wins voter approval. Grady County had about 300 more yes votes – 7,066 to 6,779; while in Caddo County, there were about 140 more favorable votes – 3,221 to 3,080.
Acreage Numbers Due Soon
Grain producers only have a couple more weeks to report acreage numbers to their local farm service agencies. Mark Jackson with the Grady County office.
Jackson also said many producers planted millet or sudan to try and make up for low hay inventories. He said those crops also must be reported by July 16th in order for producers to maintain eligibility in USDA programs.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX up to $70.53 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude up to $76.31.
Natural gas bumps up to $2.94 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,259 and silver is $16.31
Tuesday, June 26th
Ft. Cobb Man Dies in Grady County Crash
Investigators are still looking into yesterday's fatal crash involving a car and two semis near Tuttle. 19-year old Jordan McClayne Shaw of Ft. Cobb died in the crash, which happened about 3:30 p.m. Monday on State Highway 4 near Bridge Creek school. The highway patrol reports that Shaw was driving a car northbound on the highway, when he crossed into oncoming traffic. His car was hit by one semi, then the car went into a broadslide and was hit by the second semi. The big rig drivers, 58-year old Elbert Miles of Wichita Falls, Texas and 38-year old Aaron Eichelberger of Grandview, Missouri were not injured. Traffic on the highway was shut down for nearly 5 1/2 hours.
Teen Charged in Connection with Anadarko Shooting Death
A teenager accused of being at the scene of the shooting death of an Anadarko man earlier this month is charged in connection with the crime. The Lawton Constitution reports that 18-year old Jaydin Tselee is being held in the Caddo County jail on a $1 million bond. Tselee is charged with accessory to murder in connection with the June 12th shooting death of Duane Hugar, Jr. It's reported that Tselee admitted being the driver of a vehicle that was seen at the home where the shooting occurred. If convicted, Tselee faces up to 45 years in prison.
Oklahomans Casting Ballots in Primary Election
It's election day in Oklahoma. Republicans and Democrats will be casting votes in races for a number of state offices, including governor and lieutenant governor. There are also races for a number of federal, state, and county offices. The primary election will decide candidates who will be each party's representative in the general election this fall. Several races have more than two candidates. If no candidate gets more than 50 percent of the vote, the top two candidates will be in a run-off in August. Among the regional county offices to be decided include District Judge for Grady and Caddo counties where there are three candidates on the ballot. In Grady County, Republicans in District One and Democrats in District Three each have three county commissioner candidates to choose from. In Caddo County, there are two Democrats on the ballot for county assessor. Polls are open until 7 o’clock tonight. We'll have live special reports on the regional races on the radio after the polls close tonight
Chix PD to Try Installing New Phone Software Again
Software installers will be back at the Chickasha Police Department today, hoping to upgrade the department's 9-1-1 phone system. Crews ran into some difficulty trying to upgrade the system last week. Officials say incoming phone calls to the non-emergency phone numbers may be disrupted during the process, which is expected to last much of the day. 9-1-1 calls are being re-routed and should not be affected by the upgrade.
Grady County OHCE Awards Thousands in Scholarships
More than $3,000 in scholarships were awarded to area students.Thee Grady County Oklahoma Home and Community Education (OHCE) groups issued five $750 scholarships at its summer conference. Among them are Nathan Ratcliff of Amber-Pocasset, and Mckenzie Reherman of Ninnekah. Ratcliff will attend Oklahoma State University and wants to major in business. Reherman will attend OSU-OKC and study ultrasound technology courses. Susan Routh with Grady County OSU Extension tells of other scholarship recipients.
Also awarded a scholarship was Emily Taylor, a student at East Central University, majoring in Family and Consumer Science.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $68.08 a barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $74.73.
Natural gas is $2.92 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,259 and silver is $16.30.
Monday, June 25th
City of Chickasha Uses Two Accounting Firms
Two accounting firms are now being used to review financial records at Chickasha city hall. For several years the city has used the local firm of Angel, Johnston, and Blasingame to do the annual audit of city books. This past year, the city council employed Crawford and Associates of Oklahoma City to also review the city's books. City Manager John Noblitt tells one reason why he recommended a second firm.
Noblitt said the local firm is used primarily to report on the financials and that he likes the separation that a second firm provides, saying it allows the city to be more above board in its spending.
Thousands Vote Early, Ahead of Primary Election
Oklahoma's mid-term primary election is tomorrow. Republicans, Democrats, and Independents can cast ballots for many top state offices, some state house and senate seats, and some county government posts. Grady and Caddo County voters have three candidates for District Judge on the ballot. State Question 788, which concerns legalizing medical marijuana, is also to be decided. Independents can vote in the Democratic primary, but not the Republican primary. State election board officials said about 40,000 voters cast ballots early in last week's in-person, absentee voting. Precincts will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. tomorrow.
Bridge Creek Fire Board Filing Canceled
Any candidates who may have been considering a run for the Bridge Creek Fire Protection District board need to put those thoughts on hold. The filing period for the post has been canceled. The filing period originaly was scheduled to start today, but Grady County Election board officials said it has been put on hold. No word on when the filing period will be re-scheduled.
K-12 Schools to Get Additional Funds
School districts across the state will be getting some extra funds. The School Land Commission will dole out more than $7 million to common schools that get funds from that agency. A press release from the group says the distribution was to make sure that K-12 schools had funding at their same levels as last year. Officials said every income source of the commission were stable or above average in the past year, with the exception of oil and gas lease-bonus revenues.
Student Fees to Increase, but Not Tuition at USAO
There won't be any tuition increases for USAO students in the coming school year. However, regents did approve an increase in some fees. In-state students taking a full schedule of classes will spend about $7,700 in tuition for the year. Fees will be going up by about $250 per semester, or about $500 for the school year. The increase in fees includes a new educational network connectivity fee of $12 per credit hour. A student activity fee will increase $2 to $11 per credit hour. A student government fee - which previously was part of the activity fee – now will be an additional $2 per credit hour. Fall classes for USAO will start August 27th. New student orientation will run Aug. 24th through 26th.
2018 CHS Grads Can Pick Up Diplomas
Recent graduates of Chickasha High School can pick up their diplomas. The documents are available at the high school, and may be picked up Monday through Friday between 8:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m.
Energy and Metals
Crude oil on the NYMEX is $68.58 per barrel.
London-based Brent crude is $75.55.
Natural gas is $2.94 per million BTUs.
Gold is $1,268 and silver is $16.45.