CS Masthead


DUI Task Force Holds First Meeting In Culbertson

The Roosevelt County DUI Task Force discussed revising criteria for scholarships for 2019 high school graduates when the task force met at the Roosevelt County Complex in Culbertson, Friday, Feb. 1.

The meeting was the first held in Culbertson for the task force, now in existence nearly five years. Beginning this month, meetings will rotate between Wolf Point, Poplar and Culbertson to give more people an opportunity to attend monthly meetings that are open to the public. Previously, all meetings had been held in the Roosevelt County Health Department conference room in Wolf Point.
The previous two years, the annual $500 scholarships was offered to graduating seniors at high schools in Roosevelt County. The focus of essays that are required of applicants was on DUI and the consequences.
Seven graduates applied during the previous two years.
“Six of the seven were personal,” DUI Task Force coordinator A.J. Allen said.
He added that if enough seniors apply this year, a second scholarship could be added.
Scholarship application essays are now focused on how the student chooses to live without the influence of alcohol or drugs, peer pressure and bullying or other negative influences around them.
This year, the task force is hoping to empower high school seniors by focusing on the positive aspects of the student’s life to empower the graduates and others around them by making positive choices that do not include impaired driving, underage drinking and choosing not to ride with drivers that are impaired by alcohol or drugs.
Essays must relate to impaired driving, must relate to living above negative influences and pressures, must address rising above peer pressure and setting a positive example, must be nonfiction and may not contain profane language. Essays entered become the property of the Roosevelt County DUI Task Force and might be presented to the public.
“In order to qualify for a DUI Task Force scholarship, there should be something about drinking,” county commissioner Gary Macdonald said.
Macdonald’s requested change will be incorporated into revised guidelines that will be provided to all high school guidance counselors in Roosevelt County.
Fort Peck Community College will grade the essays and return them to the task force for final determination of winners.
Scholarship essay criteria and entry forms are available from counselors at all high schools in Roosevelt County. Essays and entry forms must be completed and returned to school counselors by Wednesday, April 17. The counselors will forward entries to the Roosevelt County Health Department.
Parents and students seeking additional information about scholarships should contact Allen at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 653-6212.
In other business, the task force discussed Allen presenting DUI awareness obstacle courses at high schools. Students wearing “drunk simulation goggles” would drive golf carts between traffic cones. The goggles simulate effects of alcohol on the brain and vision. The experience increases awareness of dangers associated with drinking and driving. The activity also helps offset misconceptions about drinking and driving.
The obstacle course will likely be presented in Culbertson during the spring. Other schools are expected to host the program.
Sheriff’s deputy Frederick Lee said he would also like to present a program at schools about seatbelt use.
The Montana Highway Patrol’s Alive at 25 alcohol education program that targets teens and young adults between ages 15 and 24 will be offered to high school students in Bainville and Brockton, in addition to Culbertson.
Task force president Colleen Timmins-Lee of Wolf Point, a Montana Highway Patrol trooper, said the program helps young drivers make better choices that include not drinking alcohol or using drugs.
Timmins-Lee said young drivers completing the program receive certificates and that some insurance companies give discounted rates when the certificates are presented.
The DUI Task Force meets the first Friday of most months at 10 a.m. It is comprised of representatives of local law enforcement and members of the communities. The next meeting will be held at a venue to be determined in Poplar Friday, March 1. The meeting is open to the public.