Written by Eric Killelea
Wolf Point’s City Council welcomed new member John Plestina Monday, Sept. 21.
Mayor Chris Dschaak garnered council approval to appoint Plestina, the co-editor at The Herald-News and Culbertson Searchlight, to fill the vacant Ward 1 seat on the council. Former councilmember Vivian Schultz resigned in June.
Plestina was the only eligible citizen to show interest in filling the vacancy. He will hold the seat until November 2017, when he can then submit his name for election for a two-year term.
Plestina joins seven other council members: Laurie Evans, Rollin Paulson, Ashley Moran, Craig Rodenberg, David Block, Judy Page and Tina Bets His Medicine.
In an email, Plestina said he has been an editor, sports writer and reporter for 30 years. He moved to Wolf Point in February 2014 to become editor at the local newspapers, but now plans to retire from full-time employment at the end of the year.
The Roosevelt County Commissioners appointed Plestina to the Mosquito Control Board earlier this year and to the county DUI Task Force in 2014. He remains the secretary of Wolf Point Elks Lodge No. 1764, remains active in the Wolf Point Lions Club and serves on the board of Food Pantry Inc., which just opened the new food pantry in Wolf Point.
Plestina has one daughter and two grandchildren residing in Maine.
Written by Herald-News
Wolf Point Federal Credit Union CEO Lester Warby saved a customer’s pickup truck and possibly the credit union from burning Monday, Sept. 21, when he put out an engine compartment fire with a fire extinguisher at the drive up window at about 4:30 p.m. The Wolf Point Volunteer Fire Department arrived shortly after. (Photo by John Plestina)
Written by Herald-News
A man the Wolf Point Police Department said was intoxicated crashed a pickup truck into a utility pole near the Indian Health Service on Sixth Avenue North Thursday, Sept. 17, leaving the north side without power for a few hours. A transformer was on the ground and caused a small fire that brought the Wolf Point Volunteer Fire Department to the scene. The Fort Peck Tribes Department of Law and Justice arrested the male driver. Tribal police did not release the man’s name. (Photo by Eric Killelea)
Written by John Plestina
It took several motions before Wolf Point School District trustees agreed to rehire former Northside Elementary School principal Ann Beste-Guldborg as data specialist and testing coordinator Monday, Sept. 14. The 12-month independent contract will pay $65,000 to the former administrator who took a buyout of her contract in 2012.
Beste-Guldborg will have to obtain an independent contractor’s license.
School board chairman Mark Kurokawa said the board would revisit the contract during a future meeting because trustees disagreed over wording of the contract. The meeting was later set for Wednesday, Sept. 23, at 6 p.m.
In other business, the board voted to hire several people pending satisfactory background checks. They are: Wendy Connelley, junior class advisor; Shane Reed, maintenance director; Naomi Carter, Andrea Christian, Julie D’Ambrosio, Cheryl Stracener, Glenn Strader, substitute teachers; Troy Blount, assistant high school boys basketball coach; Brent Nygard, junior high girls’ basketball coach; Sierra Hanks, part-time custodian; and Ronnette Babb, substitute teacher.
The school district previously posted nepotism notices in The Herald-News in accordance with state law because Babb and Hanks are related to school board members.
In another matter, the board approved an extension of a Lustre Elementary School District bus route into the Wolf Point School District.
Trustees also authorized district business manager Cheri’ Nygard to open a Pcard account at First Community Bank to make monthly Pcard credit card payments through the ACH process and to have Cheri’ Nygard, Connie Neubauer and district superintendent Gary Scott as the authorized signatories. The account could also be used to set up other ACH payments as needed in the future.
In other business, the board approved final expenditures for the Montana Striving Readers Project and ESSA Title School Wide grants by Sept. 30 to close out both grants.
In another matter, the trustees voted to develop a practice field, shot put and discus throwing area northeast of the football field.
The board also voted to dispose of the 1996 Ford Crown Victoria, the former student resource officer vehicle.
In other business, the trustees voted to purchase a $6,768 floor scrubber for Southside Elementary School and junior and senior high school custodial supplies from K-B Commercial Products for $5,613.
Written by John Plestina
Mountain lions, and the potential threat to livestock, hadn’t been a major concern for Roosevelt County rancher Wade Traeholt until his wife, Jonisa, found her horse dead Tuesday morning, Sept. 15, from what is believed to be a mountain lion attack.
The location is in northwest Roosevelt County, north of Montana Highway 250, northeast of Lustre.
“It happened right in my yard. It happened 50 feet from my house,” Traeholt said.
“I have kids 6 and 5,” he said.
“I wasn’t even worried about it before. I never thought too much of it and then this happened Well, the game plan has happened now,” Traeholt said.
“People should be on the lookout because I’d hate to have it happen to somebody else,” he said.
Traeholt called the Roosevelt County Sheriff’s Office and also reported it to the Valley County Sheriff. The Traeholt property is about four miles inside Roosevelt County. The RCSO referred the call to the Fort Peck Tribes Fish and Game Department.
“We confirmed it was probably killed by a mountain lion. The animal was killed by the neck and that’s pretty much what a mountain lion does,” Fort Peck Tribes Fish and Game Department director Robert Magnan said.
Mountain lion attacks are rare in northeast Montana.
“This is the first one I know of. We have had sightings [of mountain lions] but we have never had attacks,” Magnan said.
He said attacks at night are consistent with how mountain lions act.