Serving the Polo Area Since 1857
Tri-County Press December 19, 2013 Volume 156, Number 13 - $1.00
The Polo Marcos had the 3-point shot working as they defeated the Hawks Dec. 16. B1
Area children send their Christmas lists to St. Nick. Special Section
Ogle County Sheriff â€™s credit card spending is called into question. A7
Staff learn about active shooter situations By Chris Johnson Reporter Blanks were fired, books were thrown and police officers were wrestled to the ground during an exercise Dec. 11 at the Polo High School. â€œShootings can happen anywhere,â€? said Rock Valley College police chief Joe Drought. â€œWe need to develop plans on how to respond.â€? Knowing what to do during an active shooter event can help reduce the loss of life, he said. Faculty, staff, and school officials in the Polo School District participated in the active shooter drill. â€œI applaud Polo for wanting to do this training,â€? Drought said. While direct confrontation with a shooter is not preferred, Drought said it may be necessary to prevent further loss of life. â€œFighting back is an option to help save lives,â€? said Drought. â€œSince Sandy Hook there is more interest in learning how to deal with these situations.â€? One year ago a lone gunman entered Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown Conn. and killed 20 students and six adult staff members. Since that tragedy, school districts across the United States have been taking measures to prevent a similar incident from occurring. â€œDuring the class, the teachers and faculty will learn practical measures they can take during an active shooter
situation,â€? said Drought. They include how to barricade a classroom, the best ways to flee the school, and how to fight back if needed. Drought said Rock Valley College has been offering these classes for five years. The course, titled Practical Responses to Active Shooters, required everyone to learn about active shooters and to get hands on demonstrations during the drill. â€œOur primary objective is to survive,â€? said Drought. â€œWe are going to be firing blanks today because people ask what a gun sounds like. Blanks are as close as we can simulate to a real shooting without real bullets.â€? The training instructs participants on how to a defend themselves or the life of another including the use of deadly force, Drought said. â€œYou need to ask yourself â€˜what if,â€™â€? said Drought. â€œYou need to prepare mentally.â€? Drought said part of preparing is getting rid of any thoughts that an incident â€œcan not happen here.â€? â€œIt can happen here, but hopefully we can prevent it,â€? said Drought. Two days after the class was held in Polo there was another school shooting in Colorado on Dec. 13. â€œThe purpose of this class Ellie Dyer throws a book at a target while Joe Drought and Gene Schmidt watch on. Photo by Chris Johnson is to build a database or plans. If we are prepared we can find ourselves acting instead of panicking,â€? he said.
City approves $18,685 contract
Turn to A8
By Chris Johnson Reporter
Members of the Polo City Council did not think it would be right to bid out a project for a new pool filter building. After a brief discussion Monday night, the board unanimously approved an $18,685 quote from Ebert Engineers to construct the building. â€œMark Ebert knows the project,â€? said pool committee member Mark Scholl. â€œHe is on the committee and is A classroom at Polo High School is barricaded during comfortable with you bidding the active shooter drill Dec. 11. Photo by Chris Johnson
this out.â€? â€œWe should accept it,â€? said alderperson Louise Hall. â€œIt would be a slap in the face to not let him do it,â€? said alderman Randy Schoon. The quote includes $11,040 for materials and labor to contract a building on the existing foundation. Another $6,480 in materials and labor will finish the interior with insulation, sheeting, and moldings. An aluminum floor door will add $1,265 to the project. In other business the board approved a committee to
look into ordinances and make suggestions on how to improve them. This came up mayor Doug Knapp said, because an ordinance is on the books that prevents homes with 60 percent or more damage from being rebuilt on a parcel with less than 10,000 feet. â€œWe are currently changing the ordinance to accommodate this,â€? said Knapp. He said a committee should be formed to look into all the building ordinances in Polo. Knapp recommended
having local contractors, bankers, and level-headed minds on the committee. His recommendation for the committee was to have Bryon Bowers, Karen Bumsted, Jim Busser, Wade Corbitt, and Mark Ebert on the committee. This committee would have different duties that the zoning board of appeals. â€œI think it is a good idea,â€? said Polo resident Richard Jacks. â€œSome lots do not conform and we need to help Turn to A2
County board approves $99,500 home purchase By Vinde Wells Editor Ogle County will soon own another piece of property near its judicial center. The county board voted 20-4 Tuesday to authorize board chairman Kim Gouker, Byron, to sign documents to purchase the house at 102 S. Fifth St., Oregon, for $99,500, and to enter into a three-year lease with the current occupant. The purchase of the house has been a long time in the making. â€œItâ€™s a piece of property weâ€™ve looked at ever since we built the judicial center,â€? Gouker said.
The judicial center, which is next door to the house to the south, was completed in 2005. The county board purchased the property north of the house, where Jackass BBQ is located at 501 W. Washington St. (Ill. 64), last June from John Spoor for $150,000. The county leases that property to restaurant owner Andy Riegel. The board will purchase the house from Scott and Barb Spoor, and lease it to Robert Lowe, who currently has a law practice there. Lowe has a contract to buy the house from the Spoors for $89,500 but is willing
In This Weekâ€™s Edition...
to forego the purchase if he can rent it from the county, Gouker said. Lowe will pay the county $300 a month rent for the property, pay the real estate taxes, and take care of maintenance, Gouker said. Gouker said an appraiser hired by the county valued the house at $89,500. Board member Lyle Hopkins, Polo, voiced his opposition to the purchase price. â€œIf it was appraised at $89,500, I donâ€™t think we should offer one penny Emily Sherrick, Polo, loads up a box of canned goods for the Polo Lifeline Food Pantry more,â€? he said. Board member Greg Dec. 12 at Crossroads Community Church. The food was collected during the Polo
Births, A4 Church News, A5 Classifieds, B6-B12 Entertainment, A6 Fines, B5
Council of Churches annual drive for Christmas food baskets. The food left after the
Turn to A2 baskets were packed was taken to the food pantry. Photo by Vinde Wells
Marriage Licenses, A4 Public Voice, A8 Property Transfers, B4 Sheriffâ€™s Arrests, B5
Social News, A4 Sports, B1, B2 Weather, A3 Zoning Permits, B5
Deaths, B3 Hortense Ludwig, Michael McPherson, Joan B. Mock, Frederic A. Yoder
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Tri-County Press, Thursday, December 19, 2013, Page A2
Meyer said comments in article were not accurate By Vinde Wells Editor
An Ogle County Board member said Tuesday that his comments were not accurately portrayed in an article that appeared Dec. 14 in Sauk Valley Weekend. Lee Meyers, Byron, was among several county board members who were interviewed last week for an article about credit card expenditures made by Ogle County Sheriff Michael Harn. The article reported: â€œLee Meyers, a member of
the county board and county Security Committee, said he had asked Harn about individual purchases in the past, most of the time for bigger charges, he said, but wasnâ€™t aware of the lunch training.â€? The article appears on A7 in this edition. Meyers told fellow board members Tuesday night that his comments were not accurately represented in the article. â€œIâ€™ve asked him [Harn] about some of the charges, but I didnâ€™t say â€˜bigger charges,â€™â€? Meyers said after the meeting.
â€œThey didnâ€™t publish what I said; they took a piece of what I said. I feel it was taken out of context.â€? Meyers, a member of the Security Committee which oversees the sheriffâ€™s department, said that when he has asked Harn about expenditures, the sheriff always knows where the money was spent and what was purchased. Sauk Valley Media publishes Ogle County Newspapers in addition to the Dixon Telegraph, Sterling/Rock Falls Gazette, saukvalley.com and oglecountynews.com.
Original asking price for property was $129,000
Polo Community Preschool is offering a new class called Fun Project Days. Above, teacher Ginger Morhardt works with a group of students on an art project. At right, two students examine different textures with their feet. The preschool is located at Faith United Methodist Church, 702 E. Dixon St. Photos supplied
Oregon, John Oâ€™Brien, Rochelle, Zach Oltmanns, Sparrow, Rochelle, Davis Junction, Dick disagreed. Petrizzo, Davis Junction, â€œIf we were buying it just for a house I would agree with you,â€? he said. â€œItâ€™s a vital piece of property for the further expansion of the judicial center.â€? Gouker said the Spoors were originally asking $129,000 for the house. He said the $300 rent Lowe will pay over the next three years will make up the $10,000 difference between the appraisal and the purchase price. Hopkins cast a no vote, along with board members Skip Kenney, Rochelle, Lee Meyers, Byron, and Pat Saunders, Polo. Voting yes were Gouker, Sparrow, Dorothy Bowers, Byron, Jerry Brooks, Oregon, Bobbie Colbert, Rochelle, Ron Colson, Mt. Morris, John Finfrock, Mt. Morris, Don Griffin, Oregon, Rich Gronewold, Forreston, Marcia Heuer, Oregon, Dan Janes, Stillman Valley, Kim Kirkolis, Davis Junction, Bruce McKinney, Rochelle, Pat Nordman,
Committee will examine some city ordinances From A1
about it,â€? said Knapp. The agenda listed the committee as being called a planning commission but city attorney Tom Suits said there are legal requirements for a planning commission, but the city could call the group a committee. He said he will get a copy
the homeowners if they need to rebuild.â€? Schoon agreed and said something needs to be done with the ordinance. â€œOur ordinance is uncalled for,â€? he said. â€œWe are a group of action and we can do something
of the rules to the board. The board unanimously approved a committee be formed with a name to be determined in the future. The board also approved the 2013 tax levy. The estimated levy is $299,788 which is $1,000 more than last year.
Ashley Simms, Rochelle, Marty Typer, Stillman Valley, And Bill Welty, Chana.
Polo Police Report Polo Police Chief Dennis Christen released the following report Dec. 16. Dec. 9 At 6:57 p.m., Kayla L. Boyenga, 23, Dixon, was cited for operating an uninsured motor vehicle. Boyenga was released on an I-bond. Dec. 10 At 8:22 p.m., Timothy J. Feary, 32, Macomb, was cited
for operating an uninsured motor vehicle. Feary was released on an I-bond. Dec. 12 At 8:40 a.m., Steven M. Stadel, 55, Polo, was issued a city ordinance citation for failure to remove garbage totes. At 8:40 a.m., Kandra D. Kerwin, 39, Polo, was issued a city ordinance citation for
failure to remove garbage totes. At 2:33 p.m., Joshua W. Denning, 28, Polo, was issued a city ordinance citation for dogs running at large. Dec. 13 At 9:47 p.m., Namiko A. Sheely, 41, Polo, was arrested for domestic battery and resisting a peace officer. Sheely was
An eye exam is a good idea, especially if things are starting to look a little fuzzy around the edges.
Dr. Kurt K. Nelson Optometrist