Monday, May 20, 2019

Court Denies Gray's Motion to Withdraw Plea; Allows Change

Angela Gray

Angela Gray was once again in Sequoyah County District Court Monday regarding her court case.

Through a plea deal offered by the District 27 District Attorney’s office, Gray plead no contest last year to the conspiracy charge against her for her involvement in the Sept. 1, 2013 ATV crash near Muldrow which left Christian Mayberry, 16 at the time, with a traumatic brain injury. District Judge Jeff Payton gave Gray a five-year deferred sentence on Dec. 20, with a list of 17 rules and conditions of supervised probation.
In late December, Gray's attorney, Gary Buckles of Poteau, filed a motion to withdraw the plea, citing there were conditions Gray claims she was not aware of. Earlier this month, the DA's office filed a motion that the withdrawal be denied and that Gray had signed all the documents and had indicated that she understood the conditions of probation.

At Monday afternoon's hearing, Payton granted the DA's  motion to deny the withdrawal of the plea. He did agree to allow Gray's supervised probation to be through the Sequoyah County community sentencing program rather than the DA-supervised probation originally listed in her rules and conditions.

"I remember taking that plea and I remember going over all of those rules and conditions of probation with you," Payton said after Gray took the stand and was questioned by both Buckles and District 27 District Attorney Jack Thorp.

During questioning, Thorp kept showing Gray documents she had signed and confirming that it was her signature, which she did, but said she wasn't aware of what the documents were and didn't understand them. However, she was able to tell the court about other conditions of her plea agreement, including the 5-year deferred sentence, the charge of conspiracy and her no-contest plea.

"What do you not like about your probation?" Thorp asked Gray.

"Having to come up here at all; I don't want to have to come up here every month," Gray responded, referring to the DA-supervised probation. "This has gone on way too long."

She also had an issue with some of the court fees, including those charged for subpeonas.

Thorp said his office got what they wanted in their motion.

"She was claiming ... she didn't understand the DA-supervision aspect of it," Thorp explained after the hearing. "I had rather this case be supervised by community sentencing. I hope Ms. Gray lives her life according to the rules and conditions of probation.

"Hopefully, this will put an end to this case," Thorp added. "Unfortunately, there won't be an end for Christian."

Kim Mayberry, Christian's mother, said her family is glad to have this behind them.

"I'm grateful that it's over and that it went the way it needed to," Mayberry said. "Most of all, that Christian knows that this went the way it should -- that he has that assurance."

Gray has 90 days to appeal the decision with the Court of Appeals. Thorp said the original plea agreement also included dropping the conspiracy charges against Gray's son, Joey Gray, and Kyle Brannon, if the plea agreement stands.

Pam Cloud, Managing News Director

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CASA Seeking Advocates for Abused and Neglected Children


Do you know the best way that you can represent children in foster care? Become a CASA volunteer and speak up for a child’s best interests. 

In an overburdened social welfare system, abused and neglected children often slip through the cracks among hundreds of other cases. CASA volunteers can change that. CASA is a volunteer-based organization that empowers everyday citizens as officers of the court. 

Appointed by judges, CASA volunteers typically handle just one case at a time — and commit to staying on that case until the child is placed in a safe, permanent home. While others may come and go, CASA volunteers provide that one constant that children need in order to thrive.

Individuals can learn more about becoming a CASA volunteer and how they can make a positive impact in a child’s life by attending the upcoming CASA 101 Informational Session on Thursday, May 23rd from 11 am to 12 pm at the CASA office located at 102 E. Chickasaw Ave. in Sallisaw.

This is a no-obligation introduction to CASA and its mission.

For more information on becoming a CASA volunteer, visit www.casaok.org or contact Jenny Crosby at (918) 686-8199 or via email at jenny@casaok.org.


KXMX News Staff

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Saturday, May 18, 2019

CASC Nursing Class of 2019 Pinning Ceremony

 CASC Nursing Class of 2019 stands together at the conclusion of their pinning ceremony.

The Carl Albert State College Nursing Class of 2019 participated in the annual Pinning Ceremony on May 14, 2019 for students completing the RN program.

Nursing department awards went to the following students:

The Florence Nightingale Award — Gerry Goins

The Outstanding LPN to RN Graduate Award — Jennifer Benefield

Outstanding Nursing Student — Jeanette Gass

In addition to the award winners, other graduates of the class are Emily Adams, Dustin Armstrong, Lauren Carlile, Frankie Clifton, Brandy Davis, Britnie Davis, Susan Davlin, Cassandra Engelke, Aaron Harris, Meighan Lovelace, Jamie Horn, Devin Hyatt, Kori LaFevers, Mayra Solito, Olivia Moya, Blake Olive, Jenna Perdue, Casaundra Simpson, Jeannie Smith, Casey Smittle , Crystal Tengbeh, Amber Thompson, and Alexandra Torres.

The Director of Nursing Education at CASC is Marcia Cullum, and Delores Steele serves as the Administrative Assistant to the program. Nursing Instructors are: Rebecca Sanders, APRN-CNP; Lois Gotes, MSN, APRN-CNP; Joyce Johnson, MS, RN; Stephanie Mann, MSN, RN; Patricia Dollar, BSN, RN; Kristal Newlin, MSN, RN; Cara Stewart, MSN, RN; Vicky Russell, MSN, RN NE-BC; and Maurica Treat-Nordberg, MSN, RN.

KXMX News Staff

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Thursday, May 16, 2019

Click It or Ticket Campaign Kicks Off May 20


As the Memorial Day holiday approaches, the Oklahoma Highway Safety Office (OHSO) and Oklahoma law enforcement want to remind all drivers of the importance of seat belt use. The annual 'Click It or Ticket' campaign is a high-visibility enforcement effort that runs from May 20 to June 2, 2019. Aimed at enforcing seat belt use to help keep families safe, the national seat belt campaign runs concurrent with the busy travel season. 

“During the Click It or Ticket campaign, we’ll be working with law enforcement officers across local and state lines to ensure the message gets out to drivers and passengers,” said Director Paul Harris of the Oklahoma Highway Safety Office. 

“We cannot overstate the importance of wearing a seat belt," said Oklahoma Highway Patrol Commissioner Rusty Rhoades. 

"It’s the law, but it’s more than that. By far, buckling up is the simplest thing you can do to limit injury or save your life during a crash. Unfortunately, we see what happens when someone is in a crash and isn’t wearing a seat belt. So often, those injuries and deaths could have been prevented with the simple click of a seat belt,” said Rhoades.

In 2017, 231 people were killed in crashes on Oklahoma roadways who were NOT buckled up. A total of 1,479 people were injured in crashes in Oklahoma who were not wearing their seat belt. Across the nation, 10,076 unbuckled passenger vehicle occupants were killed in crashes in 2017. 

In that same year, 55 percent of passenger vehicle occupants killed at night (6 p.m.–5:59 a.m.) were not wearing their seat belts in the US. That’s why one focus of the Click It or Ticket campaign is nighttime enforcement. Participating law enforcement agencies will be taking a no-excuses approach to seat belt law enforcement, writing citations day and night. 

“Men, especially younger men ages 18-34, are much less likely to buckle up. In 2017, we lost 149 men in Oklahoma because they did not buckle their seat belts,” said Harris. 

“If you know a friend or a family member who does not buckle up when they drive, please ask them to consider changing their habits," said Harris. 

Each year, the Oklahoma Highway Safety Office conducts a seat belt observation survey across the state. In 2018, the observed seat belt use rate for Oklahoma was at 85.6 percent. That's down from 86.9 percent in 2017. 

"Help us spread this lifesaving message before one more friend or family member is killed as a result of this senseless inaction. Seat belts save lives, and everyone—front seat and back, child and adult—needs to remember to buckle up—every trip, every time,” said Harris.



KXMX News Staff

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Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Luttrell Named April Employee of the Month at NHS-Sequoyah

From left, Kindness Krew members Abbie Bailey and Judy Martens, Employee of the Month Gearl Luttrell, Kindness Krew member Ro Freeman, hospital employee Angela Hanning and Hospital Administrator Stephanie Six.

A respiratory therapist at NHS-Sequoyah has been named April’s Employee of the Month at the hospital.

Hospital Administrator Stephanie Six said Gearl Luttrell was honored as the April Employee of the Month for going above and beyond his job description.

“Gearl embodies what it means to be a leader, a team player and a role model of our NHS-Sequoyah core values,” Six said. “Gearl definitely cares for the well-being of others. Some patients even ask for him by name.”

A lifelong resident of Sequoyah County, Luttrell started working for the hospital in March 2013, and has 20 years of experience as a respiratory therapist.

“Gearl not only is very knowledgeable about respiratory therapy, but also can be seen taking out the trash, passing lunch trays or consoling the terminally ill,” Six said. “He always performs these duties with great dignity, compassion and a smile on his face.

“NHS-Sequoyah is blessed to have Gearl on our team,” Six added.

Luttrell and his wife of 36 years, Janet, have two children. He loves summertime, so naturally his favorite pastimes are spending time at the lake, boating and camping. He also enjoys making knives, shooting guns and spoiling his dogs.

The idea for recognizing an Employee of the Month came from the Kindess Krew, the hospital volunteer group known for encouraging and supporting the hospital employees. Luttrell was provided with a lunch for two from the Olde Feed Barn and free oil change from Blue Ribbon Auto, both of which were donated.


Pam Cloud, Managing News Director

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Monday Accident in Sallisaw Injures Six


A two-vehicle accident Monday evening in Sallisaw sent five people to the hospital with what appeared to be non-life threatening injuries.

Sallisaw Police Chief Terry Franklin advised a 2002 Oldsmobile Intrigue, driven by Brandon Harp, 20, of Sallisaw, was eastbound on West Redwood at approximately 5:20 p.m. and failed to stop at the stop sign at the intersection with Maple Street.

A 2000 Chevrolet SK1 pickup truck, driving by Wayne Cross, 70, of Sallisaw, was northbound on Maple Street and was unable to avoid the Oldsmobile, broadsiding the car on the right side.
Four passengers in Harp’s vehicle were all injured in the accident. A 15-year-old juvenile was taken by private vehicle to the hospital with unknown injuries before first responders arrived. Justin Jenkins, 20, of Sallisaw, was treated for cuts to his face at the scene, but refused transport by ambulance and was taken to the local hospital by private vehicle, according to Sallisaw Fire Chief Anthony Armstrong.

Two female passengers in Harp’s vehicle, Kayla Jenkins, 20 of Sallisaw, and Cailea Calvert, 18, of Vian, were both transported by Pafford EMS to NHS-Sequoyah for hip pain, according to Armstrong. Calvert was later hospitalized in Tulsa at Saint Francis Hospital with a punctured lung.

Harp was not injured in the accident.

Armstrong said initially Cross advised he was not injured, but later complained of chest pain and was transported by Pafford EMS to NHS-Sequoyah.

Harp received a citation for failure to yield at a stop sign.

In addition to the Sallisaw Police Department, Sallisaw Fire Department and Pafford EMS, the Oklahoma Highway Patrol also assisted at the scene.

Pam Cloud, Managing News Director

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Tuesday, May 14, 2019

11-year-old Escapes After Being Locked in Garage by Father


A 34-year-old Sequoyah County man has been arrested after allegations of locking his 11-year-old son in his garage for at least two days with no food or water before the boy was able to escape.

According to Sequoyah County Undersheriff Greg Cox a man spotted the boy at approximately 1:30 a.m. digging in a dumpster at McQuick's Convenience Store north of Vian. When the man approached the boy and asked him what he was doing he replied that he was looking for food because he was, "starving to death". The man then called the Sequoyah County Sheriff's Dept.

Cox stated that when deputies arrived and began questioning the boy, he stated that he had been locked in a garage by his father without any food or water. He described a door in the garage that was kept tied shut with rope and had a crow bar pressed against it. He informed deputies that his father had let him out of the garage around 9 p.m. Monday night to use the restroom and had forgotten to re-lock the door.

The boy stated that he began walking to look for food. He had walked approximately seven miles from his home which was located in Northwest Sequoyah County near Eastlake Hills.

Deputies went to the boy's home to investigate and speak to the father. According to Cox, when deputies approached the father he said, "I guess you found him."  When deputies asked to look in the garage the father refused and stated he wanted a lawyer.

A girlfriend living in the home gave the deputies consent to go in the garage where they discovered the rope used to tie the door, an air mattress, and a bottle filled with urine. There was no food or water in the garage. The girlfriend had two children who also reportedly lived in the home but they were found to not be in danger.

The father was placed under arrest and taken to the Sequoyah County Jail. 

The Department of Human Services (DHS) was called and they arrived and took custody of the boy. Cox stated that he has been placed in foster care outside of the county. A DHS doctor who examined the boy stated that he was approximately 20-25 pounds under weight. He was also found to have 284 allegedly self-inflicted cuts on his body. When asked why he would do this to himself, he responded, "It was just too much to handle."

Cox added that a forensic interview has been scheduled for the young boy tomorrow with someone trained to question children without leading them. "Hopefully we can help this boy out," Cox said.

The father is currently being held on $15,000 bond and is charged with child abuse and child neglect. He is scheduled for arraignment Wednesday.

"This is not the father's first round with DHS," Cox stated. "He's had these types of crimes in his past."

Cox added that it's early in the investigation process and after talking with the District Attorney more charges could be added and/or the bond amount could be increased. The father's name is not being released at this time until more information about the case is known.


KXMX News Staff

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Monday, May 13, 2019

National Drug Take Back Day a Success


Amy Edwards, (above, left) and Todd Long, (right) with the Sallisaw NOW Coalition participated in the National DEA Drug Take Back Event on April 27. 

They collected and disposed of almost 60 pounds of prescription drugs. 

"We partnered with and would like to say thank you to the Sallisaw Police Dept., the DEA Task Force and the Walmart Pharmacy of Sallisaw," stated Edwards. 

For anyone needing to safely dispose of prescription drugs there are currently two drop boxes in our area. They both have 24/7 access and are located in the lobbies of the Sequoyah County Sheriff's Dept. and the Sallisaw Police Dept.



KXMX News Staff

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Stilwell Man Sentenced


The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Oklahoma announced that Justin Dale Killer, age 35, of Stilwell was sentenced to 60 months’ imprisonment, and 3 years of supervised release for Felon In Possession Of Firearm. The charges arose as a result from an investigation by the Adair County Sheriff’s Office, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

The Indictment alleged that on or about May 24, 2018 the defendant, having been convicted of a crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year, knowingly possessed a firearm which had been shipped and transported in interstate commerce.

U.S. Attorney Brian J. Kuester said, “The U.S. Attorney’s Office and its federal law enforcement partners are appreciative of the close working relationships we have with state, local and tribal law enforcement agencies serving in the Eastern District. As a result of those relationships we are given the opportunity to maximize our impact on the communities we serve by assisting those agencies with the shared mission to serve and protect.”

Ronald A. White, U.S. District Judge in Muskogee, presided over the hearing. Assistant U.S. Attorney Dean Burris represented the United States.

KXMX News Staff

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Summer Vibes and Saving Lives with Oklahoma Blood Institute, May 21


Oklahoma Blood Institute will hold a blood drive with the Gore Community on Tuesday, May 21, from 1 to 6 p.m. at the Gore Methodist Church Fellowship Hall. Each blood donor will receive a trendy “Summer Vibes” t-shirt and free admission to their choice of Science Museum Oklahoma in Oklahoma City (1 entry) or Safari Joe’s H2O Water & Adventure Park in Tulsa (2 entries).

“Summer is a particularly challenging time for the blood supply,” said John Armitage, M.D., Oklahoma Blood Institute president and CEO. “People go out of town, and are busy with activities, and get out of their normal routine of giving blood. We encourage healthy adults to spare just an hour of their time to save the lives of their neighbors.”

Oklahoma Blood Institute relies on donations from approximately 1,200 donors each day to meet the needs of patients statewide. One blood donation can save as many as three lives.

Only ten percent of people in the United States who are eligible to give blood actually do. Whole blood can be donated every 56 days. Platelet donations can be made as often as every 7 days, up to 24 times a year. 

If donors opt not to take the t-shirt, Oklahoma Blood Institute will make a monetary donation to Global Blood Fund for blood center assistance in developing countries.

As a non-profit blood center, Oklahoma Blood Institute’s generous donors provide every drop of blood needed for patients in more than 160 hospitals, medical facilities, and air ambulances statewide.

Appointments are not required but can be made by calling Greg at 479-652-2362 or visiting obi.org.


KXMX News Staff

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Thursday, May 9, 2019

Commencement Ceremonies Planned at Area Schools


School districts within Sequoyah County are planning graduation ceremonies to honor seniors as the last day of classes approaches. Most high schools have commencement exercises planned throughout the month.

Sallisaw High School seniors will receive diplomas during graduation ceremonies at 8 p.m. Friday, May 17. The event is planned for the football stadium; in the event of rain, it will be held in the high school gymnasium.

The 2019 seniors of Central High School will also graduate at 8 p.m. Friday, May 17. Baccalaureate services are planned for 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 15.

Muldrow’s 2019 senior class will be honored at 7 p.m. Friday, May 17 at its graduation ceremonies; baccalaureate is slated for 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 15.

In Roland, the Class of 2019 will receive their diplomas at 8 p.m. May 17, with graduation set for the football field or the gym if it is raining. Baccalaureate services will be 3 p.m. Sunday, May 12.

Vian seniors will also graduate at 8 p.m. Friday, May 17.

The senior class at Gans High School will be recognized during commencement exercises at 7 p.m. Thursday, May 16. Baccalaureate is set for 6 p.m. Sunday, May 12, at Gans First Assembly.



Pam Cloud, Managing News Director

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Area Shriners Selling Sweet Vidalia Onions

 

Sweet Vidalia onions from Georgia are available from area Shriners while they last.

Noble Bobby Whitekiller said the annual fundraiser helps support the building fund for taking care of the Bedouin Shrine Temple in Muskogee and the transportation fund for taking children to Shriner’s Hospitals for Children in St. Louis, Mo., Shreveport, La., and the Burn Center in Galveston, Texas.

“We make sure that when children get hurt, whether it’s problems with legs or burn victims or whatever the case may be, that there’s absolutely no expense whatsoever passed on to the family,” Whitekiller said, adding that even medical expenses are covered. “There’s enough heartache and problems with a situation like that. The last thing they need is to worry about a medical expense or anything else. That’s one less thing they have to worry about.”

Because the onions are harvested at the peak of freshness and distributed immediately, Whitekiller said they will last longer than onions purchased in a grocery store.

“They harvest these onions out of Vidalia, Ga. They are harvested, packaged and loaded on the truck and brought directly up here,” he said, adding they will keep from a month up to three or more months. “These onions are probably less than a week old from the time they’re harvested, brought to us and we distribute them right away. These onions are about as fresh as you could possibly get.”

The 350 bags of onions allotted for Sequoyah County are going quickly, and Whitekiller expects them to be sold out within the next two weeks.

Anyone interested in purchasing a 10-pound bag of onions for $10 can contact Whitekiller on Facebook, by email at bobbywhitekiller@yahoo.com or by calling 918-208-7478. John Boyett will have onions available in Muldrow weekdays at the Masonic Temple or by calling 479-806-2039. In Sallisaw and Vian, contact Bill Cassidy at 918-315-1354.


Pam Cloud, Managing News Director

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Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Wood Hired by Unanimous Vote as New Sallisaw Superintendent

Randy Wood

Roland native and former Sallisaw educator Randy Wood was hired as the new Sallisaw Public School Superintendent at a special school board meeting earlier today (Wednesday, May 8).

“The Board of Education is pleased to announce the hire of Mr. Randy Wood as Superintendent of the Sallisaw School District,” Board President Justin McGrew said in a statement to The Mix. “While assessing candidates, the board considered many qualifications, but placed a premium on experience. With nearly 20 years of Superintendent experience and an equally impressive teaching resume, Mr. Randy Wood was an easy choice.”

Wood will replace Jeremy Jackson, who tendered his resignation to school board members last month, citing that he and his family felt it was the best thing for them and the position did not seem to be the “right fit” at this time.

Wood is no stranger to the Sallisaw area, having lived here for many years. A 1971 Roland graduate, Wood was a teacher, coach and vice principal in Sallisaw before becoming Roland’s superintendent in 2001. 

“Mr. Wood is from this community and has previously worked in numerous roles within our District,” McGrew said. “The students and teachers of this district are very fortunate to have attracted a candidate with Mr. Wood’s qualifications.”

As an administrator, Wood’s philosophy is that of a network, where he is the center and things come across him, rather than a hierarchy, where things go from the top down, according to the Roland school website.

Under Wood’s leadership, the Roland school system has made many improvements across the campus, including a new administration building. In March, Roland voters passed a bond for a $9 million multi-purpose, community event center that would also serve the community as a storm safe shelter.

In keeping with the board’s open-door policy to listen to concerns of residents in the district, four people spoke during the public comment agenda item, with only three of those pertaining to the hiring of a superintendent.

After hearing comments from Dawn Maust, Ron Wyrick and Debbie Phillips, school board members went into executive session for approximately 30 minutes and returned to vote. The vote among school board members to hire Wood was 5-0, with Frank Sullivan III, Justin McGrew, Amanda Hatcher, Mike Daffin and Bobby Qualls all voting “yes.”

Sallisaw School board members voted last week to accept the resignation of Superintendent Jeremy Jackson, who was just hired one year ago as the new superintendent to replace Scott Farmer, who left Sallisaw to take the Fort Gibson School Superintendent position. Jackson intends to stay until his contract term expires June 30.

An agenda item for “discussion, consideration and action regarding Superintendent duties during transition to new Superintendent” was tabled for a later time.


Pam Cloud, Managing News Director

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Performing Arts Summer Camp Applications Available



The Cherokee Nation is taking applications for the 2019 Performing Arts Summer Camp to be held June 16-21 at Sequoyah High School in Tahlequah.

The Performing Arts Summer Camp offers Cherokee students a chance to receive instruction from professional instructors in the areas of acting, singing and dance. In addition to coursework, students will attend professional performances and will have completed audition pieces by the end of the camp.

Check-in for the residential camp will be Sunday, June 16, at 3 p.m. Participating students must be Cherokee Nation citizens entering grades 9-12 in the fall of 2019.

The deadline for applications is Monday, May 13, at 11:59 p.m. Applications must be emailed to artcamp@cherokee.org; no faxed, mailed or hand-delivered applications will be accepted.

Applications are available online at www.cherokee.org under the “Quick Links” section on the left side of the page.

For more information, contact Amanda Ray at 918-453-5156 or email artcamp@cherokee.org.


KXMX News Staff

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Information for Tuesday's Gore OG&E Franchise Vote


Voters will go to the polls Tuesday for the May 14th OG&E Franchise for Gore Municipal, Sequoyah County Election Board Secretary Cindy Osborn said today.

Please keep the following information and tips in mind as the election approaches. 

 – Early voting will be available at the Count Election Board office from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday May 9th and Friday May 10th. 

- Polls are open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday. Lines are possible at peak voting times. Wait times will likely be shortest at mid-morning and mid-afternoon. Anyone in line to vote at 7 p.m. will be allowed to cast a ballot.

- Anyone who needs to look up their polling place, verify their registration information, or view a sample ballot can do so online. The Online Voter Tool can be accessed on the Oklahoma State Election Board’s website: www.elections.ok.gov. Those who vote by mail can also check the status of their ballot using the Online Voter Tool. Sample ballots are also available at the County Election Board office.

- Oklahoma law requires every voter who votes in person at the precinct polling place or during early voting at the County Election Board to show proof of identity before receiving a ballot. There are three ways for voters to prove their identity under the law (only one proof of identity is required): Show a valid photo ID issued by federal, state, or tribal government; or show the free voter identification card issued to every voter by the County Election Board; or sign an affidavit and vote a provisional ballot. (If the information on the affidavit matches official voter registration records, the ballot will be counted after Election Day.)

- Physically disabled voters who cannot enter the polling place, need help marking their ballots, blind or visually disabled voters and illiterate voters may be assisted by a person the voter chooses. In all cases, a person providing such assistance may not be the voter’s employer or an agent of the employer or an officer or agent of the voter’s union. A person providing assistance also must swear or affirm that the voter’s ballots will be marked in accordance with the voter’s wishes. Alternatively, all blind, visually impaired, and physically disabled voters in Sequoyah County may use the audio-tactile interface (ATI), a feature offered on all Oklahoma voting devices, to vote privately and independently, either at Sequoyah County Election Board during early voting or at their assigned polling place on election day.

- Voters who have moved since the last election, but who have not transferred their voter registration to their new address, may do so on Election Day by going to vote at the polling place where their registration has been in the past. While voting, they may fill out a form instructing the County Election Board to transfer their registration to the new address before the next election.

- Those who became physically incapacitated after 5 p.m. Tuesday May 7th still can request an emergency absentee ballot. Those who might qualify for an emergency absentee ballot should contact the County Election Board office at 918-775-2614 as soon as possible for more information.

- Any violation of election law will be reported to the proper law enforcement authorities. Electioneering is not allowed within 300 feet of a ballot box. It is also unlawful to remove a ballot from the polling location, possess intoxicating liquors within half a mile of a polling place or to disclose how you voted while within the election enclosure.

For additional election-related information, visit: www.elections.ok.gov.


KXMX News Staff

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Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Moffett Honors Late Superintendent; Adds Blessing Box

 
Moffett school board members, along with school officials and family of the late Jimmie Owens gathered to dedicate a section of road in Moffett as the Jimmie Owens Jr Memorial Highway. Pictured are Randy Hyatt, Sylvester Carolina, (principal) Lance Stuart, Interim Superintendent Greg Reynolds, Nataya Dunlap, JJ Owens (son), Linelle Owens (wife), Trinity Owens (daughter in law) and Eden Owens (granddaughter).
Dedicating a community Blessing Box were Lindsie Dyer, People Inc.’s TSET Healthy Living Program Director; Shannon Edwards, SWAT AP and SWAT students.

Special dedications and activities made the community of Moffett’s second annual Block Party extra special this year.

The community gathered on Saturday, May 4 to remember the late Jimmie Owens, teacher and superintendent who died Feb. 13, and dedicate a road there named in his honor. A new community blessing box was also dedicated.

In February, on the way to Owens’ funeral, Nataya Dunlap, a seventh-grader at Moffett Public Schools, had a question for her mom.

“What is the name of this highway?” Nataya asked her mother, Heather Barnes, a Moffett school staff member. Barnes informed her daughter the road on which they were traveling was old Highway 64. Nataya then asked her family “How do we get the name of the road changed to honor Mr. Owens?”

“Nataya took it upon herself to email state representatives and anyone else that would hear her story asking for the road to be renamed,” said Lindsie Dyer, People Inc.’s TSET Healthy Living program director. “A couple of weeks later she learned that her hard work and persistence had paid off.”

The dedication of the new road signs took place as part of the Block Party as Owens’ family, friends and staff joined the ceremony.

“We would like to thank everyone that had a part in making Nataya’s dream a reality and a special ‘thank you’ to Nataya for not giving up, even after her first attempt fell through and she was told it could not be done,” Dyer added.

Also dedicated at the Block party was the Student Wellness Advocacy Team, or SWAT’s community blessing box.

“The blessing box was something that Mr. Owens really wanted to be a part of,” Dyer said. “He found the dollhouse that he wanted to use but unfortunately was unable to complete it before he passed.”

Several members of the community came together once they learned the story and began donating the supplies to finish the project.

Shannon Edwards, the SWAT team’s adult partner, took the lead on this project to make sure it was complete for Block Party dedication.

The blessing box is located at Moffett Public Schools near the softball field. It reads, “Take what you need; leave what you can; but above all, be blessed.”

“If anyone would like to donate items such as shampoo, conditioner, toothpaste, toothbrushes, along with canned or boxed food, it would be greatly appreciated,” said Edwards.

Pam Cloud, Managing News Director

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Monday, May 6, 2019

Commissioners Discuss Bond Issues, Children’s Safety


During Monday’s regular weekly meeting, the Sequoyah County commissioners voted to place a speed limit sign of 35 m.p.h. at 1097 Road off U.S. 64B in District 1. With a daycare in the area, the commissioners said it should help bring increased safety for the children.

There was also discussion to approve issuing lease revenue bonds and notes through the Sequoyah County Educational Facilities Authority to improve schools in District 5 of Sequoyah County public schools. This bond would allow schools to vote in excess of their current bonding capacity then issue bonds over several years to pay. This bond will be the second one for Roland public schools.

The bond issuance would not exceed $7 million dollars and would be used for construction, equipping, renovating, and remodeling of school buildings, acquiring school furniture, fixtures and equipment for the schools.

Once approved, the bonds will improve the community, providing infrastructure and, according to District 2 County Commissioner Steve Carter, one of the three facets vital to a community -- “good schools, good roads, and good recreation.”

Commissioners also voted to appoint Crystal Stuart as receiving agent and Amanda Goins as requisitioning agent for the commissioner’s office. The salary of County Election Board Secretary Cindy Osborn was discussed in executive session.

Pam Cloud, Managing News Director

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