Written by Herald-News
Frontier students participated in the Frontier Heritage Month Powwow Friday, Nov. 20. The Fort Peck Sioux drum group played. A feed preceded the powwow. Lennoxx Lilley carries the flag during the grand entry. (Photos by John Plestina)
Written by John Plestina
The federal highway bill that is snaking its way through the Congressional process contains several problematic areas, including funding, according to Montana’s Highway 2 Association president Bob Sivertsen of Havre.
Sivertsen has a proposal that is circulating in Congress and elsewhere.
“The major problems in the current highway bill are the funding proposals by both the House and Senate as well as some of the issues that are attached to highway bill, such as funding for the EX-IMP Bank [Export-Import Bank of the United States].
“My proposal addresses the Highway Trust Fund, the Keystone XL Pipeline and repealing the Oil Export Ban,” Sivertsen said in a statement.
“We have to realize that, it’s not about, ‘What’s good for America’ but what the rich and powerful lobby in D.C. wants. As Will James once stated, ‘We have the best Congress that money can buy,’” he said.
Since its inception in 2001, the Highway 2 Association has been a strong proponent of the “4 For 2” campaign to build a four-lane U.S. Hwy. 2 across the 666 miles that crosses Montana, for an adequate transportation system along the Hi-Line with safety, tourism, agriculture and the enhancement of energy and other economic development cited as reasons for the need.
Sivertsen brought various transportation proposals to meetings in Wolf Point and Culbertson in recent years.
At issue with the “Highway Bill” is a long-term fix to the solvency of the highway trust fund and the need to repair and upgrade highways, bridges, streets, water and sewer.
Sivertsen maintains that while it has been said that $85 billion is required just to maintain infrastructure, $265 billion is needed to play catch-up and upgrade the system.
Sivertsen’s proposal includes that oil or refined products should be exported from the United States unless gas prices are maintained at or below $3 a gallon.
“I’m told, that for every $0.10 drop per gallon, it translates into a $3 billion savings to consumers,” he said.
Congress has considered lifting the ban on exporting U.S. oil.
The $325 billion Surface Transportation Reauthorization and Reform Act of 2015 that was introduced in October is a bi-partisan long-term solution for funding transportations needs that calls for spending $261 billion on highways and $55 billion on transit over six years. It would appropriate between $38.4 billion and $42.5 billion annually through fiscal year 2021.
It passed in the House 363-64 on Nov. 5. Congressman Ryan Zinke, R- Mont., voted in favor of it.
The House passed a short-term fix July 29, and then adjourned for a six-week recess without taking up the Senate’s long-term bill.
The Senate in late October approved a measure to extend federal transportation funding for three weeks. President Barack Obama signed the bill.
Written by John Plestina
Accumulating snow was predicted for this week across the Hi-Line Monday, Nov. 23.
According to the National Weather Service in Glasgow, a cold front was expected to bring falling temperatures Tuesday afternoon with rain quickly turning to snow and spreading eastward from Phillips County to the rest of northeast Montana. The bulk of the snow was expected to exit the area by Wednesday night.
“As we get closer to the upcoming storms system Tuesday through Thursday, some rough numbers and placements have started to appear in the magic crystal ball we use. Accumulating snow and lower temperatures are indeed likely across the whole of northeast Montana,” NWS Glasgow meteorologist Grant Hicks said in a statement.
Hicks’ rough guess Monday morning called for ½ inch to 2 inches north of U.S. Hwy. 2 and 2 to 5 inches south of Hwy. 2.
High temperatures on Wednesday were forecasted to be in the 20s with falling temperatures likely throughout the day. Once the center of the cold air mass settles into the region Wednesday night, overnight lows may reach into the lower teens to single digits.
North to northeast winds of 15 to 25 mph with higher gusts are possible Wednesday, with the possibility of blowing snow and reduced visibility. Winds are expected to calm slightly overnight but still be high enough to generate wind chills in the single digits above and below zero.
Hicks cautioned that accumulating snowfall might make for slick driving conditions leading into the Thanksgiving holiday with possible blowing and drifting snow reducing visibility and producing a stiff wind chill.
One week earlier winds exceeding 50 mph Wednesday, Nov. 18, toppled a few trees, caused power outages in some areas and fanned flames from a house fire in Wolf Point that threatened several neighbors’ homes.
Blustery winds wind plummeted wind chills to the single digits when a strong cold frontal system made its way through eastern Montana. Gusts were reported as high as 65 mph. Winds were reported at 56 mph in the Froid area. The highest wind speed reported for Poplar was 59 mph, and 43 mph for Culbertson.
In contrast, wind gusts from the same storm system ranging from 75 to 115 mph were reported in Spokane, Wash.
Written by Herald-News
A Wolf Point man was arraigned and pleaded not guilty to three sex charges before Magistrate Judge John Johnston in U.S. District Court in Great Falls Monday, Nov. 2.
Joseph Dean Lee, 27, appeared on charges of aggravated sexual abuse, assault with the intent to commit aggravated sexual abuse and assault with the intent to commit abusive sexual contact.
A federal grand jury handed down an indictment against Lee on Oct. 7.
According to charging documents, Lee is alleged to have knowingly caused a victim to engage in a sexual act on Jan. 28, in Wolf Point, by using physical force and threats, putting the person in fear of death or serious bodily injury
If convicted of the most serious charges contained in the indictment, he faces life in prison, $250,000 in fines and lifetime supervised release.
The Fort Peck Tribes Department of Law and Justice and Federal Bureau of Investigation investigated the case.
Written by Herald-News
(Editor’s Note: The Roosevelt County Sheriff’s Office distributes an inmate roster each week with charges and communities of residence to help keep the public informed and to illustrate that the jail has been dealing with overcrowding issues in the 17-bed facility. Names on the jail roster are those of everyone incarcerated and persons booked into the jail during the previous week and does not necessarily mean there is a new charge or conviction. Some individuals might be serving time for a previous conviction.)
As of Monday, Nov. 23, 12 inmates were housed in the Roosevelt County Jail. Valley County Detention Center was holding four females to alleviate overcrowding.
The RCSO reported that the following individuals were incarcerated at the jail between Monday, Nov. 16, and Monday, Nov. 23:
•Frank Baker, 33, Wolf Point, criminal possession of dangerous drugs;
•Amos Bridges, 39, Wolf Point, criminal contempt warrant;
•Tyrell “TJ” Connor, 30, Wolf Point, federal warrant - probation violation, transported to Great Falls jail;
•Jason Daugherty, 37, Wolf Point, criminal possession of dangerous drugs [two counts], criminal possession of drug paraphernalia, attempted assault on a peace officer or judicial officer and resisting arrest;
•Aaron Etner, 33, Fresno, Calif., partner or family member assault;
•Isaiah Follet, 33, Wolf Point, federal warrant for a probation violation, transported to Great Falls jail;
•Jason Fridge, 30, Williston, N.D., driving under the influence of any drug;
•Orrin Hernandez, 33, Reserve, federal warrant for a probation violation, transported to Great Falls jail;
•Christopher L. Hovey, 26, Williston, N.D., out-of-county warrant;
•Kevyn Johannesson, 26, Williston, N.D., fleeing or eluding a peace officer, criminal endangerment and obstructing a peace officer;
•John Kramer, 31, Williston, N.D., disorderly conduct and obstructing a peace officer;
•Lavern Knoble, 53, Poplar, felony theft;
•Morgan Long, 29, Frazer, out-of-county warrant. Transferred to Valley County Detention Center;
•John Menz, 31, Poplar, driving under the influence, criminal child, possession of drug paraphernalia, criminal endangerment, driving under the influence - detectable level of intoxication and driver under the influence of any drug [narcotics.];
•Jim Simpson, 47, Culbertson, driving under the influence - first offense;
•Adam Stephan, 42, Plentywood, 72-hour hold;
•Monte Walton, 35, Poplar, endangering the welfare of a child, violation of a protective order - first offense, criminal possession of dangerous drugs and criminal possession of drug paraphernalia.