- Written by Culbertson Searchlight
The Culbertson Science Fair Wednesday, Feb. 11, was considered a huge success, despite needing to be rescheduled after school was closed for bad weather on the original date.
This year, 126 projects were submitted by students in grades one through eight. Students in kindergarten through third grade are not required to participate, but can if they would like to. Twenty-two students in first- through third-grade participated.
There were 20 students who won blue ribbons at the science fair this year.
The fourth-grade blue ribbon winners were Alicyn Ator, Megan Granbois, Trevor Green, Brianna Miller and Kayli Olson.
Fifth- through eighth- grade blue ribbon winners have the opportunity to present their projects at the regional science fair in Havre.
The students eligible to go to Havre are: fifth- grade, James Kirkaldie, Saydee Lambert, Lexi Parham, Wyatt Snyder, Kahlela Thornton; sixth-grade, Chloe Burks, Bela Tibbs, Clayton Toavs; seventh- grade, Ashtyn Ator, Mariah Cathey, Rachael Gilbert; eighth-grade, Tristan Labatte, Chase Lambert, Lauren Lambert and Lucas Oelkers.
The school expressed gratitude to the Wild West Diner for supporting the Culbertson Science Fair and all the judges and other volunteers.
- Written by John Plestina
District Judge David Cybulski agreed to reduce bail for a Williston, N.D., couple with companion felony drug cases from $25,000 each to $5,000 with waivers of extraction Wednesday, Feb. 11, allowing them to return to jobs in a Williston tattoo and piercing business. Both were freed on bond the following day.
Joshua Wayne Jones, 36, was arraigned on a felony charge of criminal possession of dangerous drugs and misdemeanor criminal possession of drug paraphernalia.
Melissa Ann Jewett, 32, was arraigned immediately after Jones on felony criminal possession of dangerous drugs and a misdemeanor charge of obstructing a peace officer.
Both pleaded not guilty to all counts.
According to the Roose-velt County Attorney’s Office, the business that employs Jones and Jewett is Skinful Pleasures, a Williston tattoo and piercing parlor.
Both have tattoos on their necks and Jones has what is clearly a swastika on the right side of his neck.
Roosevelt County Sheriff’s Sgt. Patrick O’Connor and Deputy Chelbi Brugh arrested Jones and Jewett Monday, Jan. 19, after making contact with them inside the State Line Casino near Bainville. Casino staff had requested that the RCSO remove Jones and Jewett from the establishment.
The RCSO had prior contact with the pair when the Gold Dust Casino, also located near Bainville, called Dec. 31, 2014, telling deputies that Jones was making employees nervous. At that time, deputies told Jones and Jewett to leave the casino. According to the RCSO, Jewett had given a false name and birth date. The RCSO dispatch data center was not operational for checks of suspects.
Jewett’s true identity became known Jan. 19, as well as Jones being on federal probation for a counterfeiting conviction. It was later learned that Jones was off supervised probation.
“Deputies had received criminal history information about Jones violent tendencies and his prior arrests for drug possession and weapons possession,” a narrative from Roosevelt County Undersheriff John Summers read.
The narrative also stated that Jones tried several times to put his hands in his pockets and was told not to by O’Connor and Brugh at the State Line Casino. Jones had to be secured in handcuffs.
Methamphetamine and a knife were found in Jones pockets.
One hydrocodone pill was found on Jewett that she did not have a prescription for.
The car Jones and Jewett were driving when they were arrested was towed to the RCSO in Wolf Point and a search warrant was secured. More hydrocodone pills, a pill bottle with a name on it other than Jones’ or Jewett’s and several cell phones were found in the car and secured as evidence.
The car was released to Jones when he and Jewett bonded out of jail Thursday, Feb. 12.
May 11 trial dates are scheduled.
- Written by John Plestina
The Roosevelt County Commissioners authorized the hiring of a legislative lobbyist in Helena at a cost of $12,000 to push for approval of bills that could have financial impacts locally Tuesday, Feb. 17.
E.J. Redding of the Helena firm of M & B Strategies will focus on bills that could make funding available for road repairs and the new jail.
Commissioner Gary Macdonald said if grant funding could be secured for part of the cost of the jail, the county would not have to bond for as much money.
“It’s think it’s a good move,” he said.
“That’s going to be money well spent,” Commissioner Allen Bowker said.
In other business, the commissioners approved the purchase of a 2005 Chevrolet 3500 extended cab flatbed truck from High Plains Motors for $13,500.
The commissioners also authorized the purchase from Acme Tools of a side-by-side all-terrain vehicle for the weed board for $18,291.
- Written by Jaimee Green
Integrated Solutions Consulting of Fargo, N.D., has been awarded the contract to review and update Roosevelt County’s Pre-Disaster Mitigation Plan in collaboration with Valley, Daniels and Sheridan counties’ joint PDM Grant.
Collectively, the four counties are working together through the shared grant, with each county receiving its own personalized plan to fit its hazards-needs for mitigating natural and manmade disasters.
ISC met Feb. 10 with the county’s Local Emergency Planning Committee to present them with an overview of the process set to take place over the next 18 months which will identify the key potential hazards within the county.
Once the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the state approves of the plan, the county and incorporated towns will be asked to adopt it.
“It’s important for people to understand the financial significance and importance of this process. It is estimated that, for every $1 spent on mitigation planning the county does, an estimated $3 is saved during the disaster event and recovery period. More importantly, planning for these events is morally and ethically the right thing to do save lives and property and it is vital for the people of this community to be a part of that process,” said Mike Kemp, an ISC consultant.
The plan will examine the wide range of hazards that affect Roosevelt County, recent events, the probability of future occurrences and the vulnerabilities of our population. From that assessment, a plan of action to mitigate these hazards will be developed.
This process enables a community to remain resilient in times of disaster. It’s a proactive approach to dealing with what could happen in our community in terms of disaster.
“With the dangers presented from the Bakken Oil, this is an excellent time to be looking at our current plan and improve upon it. As an example, people may not realize that a derailed oil tanker has the potential to require a half-mile isolation area. That would mean evacuating our entire town. Those are the potential realities we need to be looking at in this plan,” said Dan Sietsema, Roosevelt County Disaster and Emergency Services coordinator.
Using a “Whole Community Approach,” the four-phased planning process will first look at the community’s profile and makeup. In phase two, potential hazards will be identified and, in the third phase, a formula will be used to identify the top threats to the area that need to be focused on. The final phase will consist of identifying and implementing changes that may mitigate or lessen the potential devastation created by these threats.
“The goal at the end of the day is to essentially put together policies and procedures that help us manage and recover from hazards and the disasters they create,” said Kemp.
FEMA requires that PDM plans be updated every five years in order for the county to remain eligible to receive disaster mitigation funds.
The PDM grant is a matching-grant that requires the county to cover 25 percent of the cost through money, or in-kind matching. The remaining 75 percent is absorbed through FEMA.
The county’s LEPC meets at 2 p.m. on the second Tuesday of every month at rotating locations. Future public meetings will be taking place to involve the community in drafting the plan at various locations throughout the county.
For more information, contact Dan Sietsema at 653-6224.
- Written by Jaimee Green
The Roosevelt County Local Emergency Planning Committee is hosting a free Incident Command System course to help ensure the continued cohesiveness of hazards planning and on-scene recovery in our area in the event of natural and man made disasters.
The ICS 300 course will take place March 16-17, at 8:30 a.m. at the Sherman Inn in Wolf Point, and will include a full-day of instruction on March 16, followed by a half-day of instruction on March 17.
The upper-level course will provide training and resources for emergency personnel who require advanced knowledge and application of the Incident Command System and expands on information covered in national ICS 100 and 200 courses.
It is designed for mid-level management and people who serve as command staff, section chiefs, unit leaders, supervisors and directors in emergency and disaster situations. Those who attend can expect to learn about ICS staffing, transfer of command, proper form documentation, unified command, resource management and interagency mission planning.
The course will further enable responders to understand and adopt the integrated, organizational structure of ICS, helping them navigate through the complexities and demands of disaster incidents. It will also enable them to better understand their roles in incident management while exploring ways to work more cohesively alongside other agencies.
The course will be instructed by Mark Gruener, District 6 Disaster and Emergency Services supervisor, and Steve Harada, Roosevelt County Fire Warden.
Coffee and water will be made available. Lunch will not be provided.
For more information, or to sign up for the course, contact Dan Sietsema, DES coordinator, at 653-6224, or Lee Allmer, LEPC chairman, at 653-1900.