The OSSAA has allowed off-season activities to resume for high school athletics. Area coaches are deciding on the best way to go about restarting their off-season routines, but Barnsdall Athletic Director Kylee Sweeney says he plans on having his athletes return next week.
In two weeks, Barnsdall athletes will have a new room with new weightlifting equipment in it. Sweeney said they will be taking extra precautions to keep everyone safe by limiting the number of people who can come into the building at once. Sweeney is hoping to be able to go to a 7-on-7 football camp at some point this summer and Sweeney says some of his other coaches are talking about doing the same.
We will have updates from other area schools as they continue to make decisions in the days to follow.
Pawhuska Students Honored With Award
There are nine students from Pawhuska Public Schools who are getting recognized for being accepted into the 2020 Oklahoma Indian Student Honor Society. This is an honor the Oklahoma Council for Indian Education gives out to students each year.
Kaitlyn Adkins, Shelby Bute, Jozelyn Brace, Easton Kirk, Zowie Miles, Jordan Nelson, Madison Quinton, Alyssa Reynolds and Gianna Sieke will all receive an Oklahoma Indian Student Honor Society keepsake and award certificate. Graduating seniors will receive an honor cord commemorating their academic achievement.
In order to qualify for this distinguished recognition, high school and college students must have a cumulative GPA of 3.9 or higher, demonstrate activity in service or leadership programs and participate in Indian cultural events or customs.
The Oklahoma Employment Security Commission is reporting that more than 32,000 Oklahoman's filed for unemployment benefits during the week ending May 23rd. This is a decrease of 1,300 applicants from the previous week. More than 480,000 unemployment claims have been filed across the state since the coronavirus pandemic began in March.
Data shows that more than 242,000 Oklahoman's were unemployed when the month of April came to an end. The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate shows 13.7 percent of Oklahoman's in the workforce are unemployed. That is the highest rate since the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics began tracking that number in 1976. The unemployment rate in Oklahoma is nearly a point lower than what it is nationally for the month of April.
The leisure and hospitality industry has been the most effected with more than 50,000 jobs lost since March. Jobs involving finance is the only sector that have added jobs since March.
Data shows that the labor force has also shrunk in April. The number of workers with a job or those looking for a job fell below 1.77 million for the first time since 2011. There are nearly 15,000 fraudulent claims being investigated as well.
Executive Director of the Oklahoma Unemployment Security Commission, Robin Roberson resigned last week. Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt had appointed Roberson to that position in February.
A police affidavit states that a Bartlesville man has been arrested on charges of shooting with intent to kill, robbery with a firearm, kidnapping and pointing a firearm.
Officers were dispatched to 117 W. Park Street in Bartlesville on Monday in reference to a shooting involving the defendant, David Edward Sayre Jr. The affidavit says that upon arrival, officers made contact with one of the victims, who told officers he was at a friend’s house when Sayre requested a ride home. When the two men got in the vehicle, Sayre pointed a firearm at the victim and forced him to switch seats so that Sayre could drive.
The defendant, along with the victim, drove to 117 W. Park Street where the victim was forced into the home under gunpoint. The police report goes on to say that once inside the home, Sayre pointed the firearm at a second victim and told him to take off his clothes if he values his kneecaps. As Sayre walked toward the bedrooms and kitchen, the victim said he ran outside. Sayre began shooting, but the victim was able to get away without being struck. The victim then called police.
The victim further states that when police arrived, the defendant took the key to his vehicle and cellphone. Police officers located four spent 9 mm shell casings and four bullet holes near the door of the residence. The affidavit states that this matches the description that the victim gave.
Sayre’s bond is set at $100,000 on the condition that he has no contact with the alleged victim or witness. He is due back in court tomorrow at 1:15 p.m.
There were four utility permits signed at Tuesday's Board of Osage County Commissioners meeting. District three commissioner Darren McKinney says the utility permit he signed is for the Green Country Fire Department and they will be cutting the road, but he feels safe in allowing the company to proceed with the work.
District one had the other three utility permits at Tuesday's meeting. District one commissioner Randall Jones was fine with signing all three of the permits.
The Board of Osage County Commissioners went into executive session on Tuesday morning with District Attorney Mike Fisher to discuss what they have the ability to do with the Kennedy Building in Pawhuska.
Back in August 2017, the Kennedy Building went up for auction and was sold for $232,000 to Jay A. Mitchell II. It was later announced that the sale was “null and void” because of a mistake made in the paperwork to make the transaction legal.
In September 2017, district three commissioner Darren McKinney was quoted as saying the following regarding the problem:
“We did not declare the building to be surplus prior to offering it up to auction. We thought that we had done so prior to the sale, but the record shows otherwise. Because of that oversight, we had to call the sale of the Kennedy Building null and void during Monday's meeting.”
Fisher laid out the series of events that have taken place since late 2017.
At this time, the commissioners own the building and can do with it as they so choose.
According to the National Register of Historic Places, the Kennedy Building was built in 1927 during the oil boom. It was renovated in 2008 to become home of the Osage County Department of Human Services, however the building has been vacant since 2015.
here are four additional COVID-19 related deaths being reported across the state of Oklahoma, including two females residing in Washington County in the 65 year or older age group. This brings the death toll in Washington County to 35 and the state total to 322.
There are now 314 cases in Washington County with 270 listed recoveries. Osage County is still listing 93 cases with 82 people who have recovered from the virus. The Oklahoma State Department of Heath is reporting eight deaths in Osage County. Nowata County remains at 23 cases with 22 recoveries and zero deaths.
There are 6,229 confirmed positive coronavirus cases across the state of Oklahoma, but the Oklahoma State Department of Health also reports more than 172,000 have tested negative for COVID-19. There are 156 people currently hospitalized due to the coronavirus.
The Board of Osage County Commissioners met for a regularly scheduled meeting at the fairgrounds in Pawhuska on Tuesday morning and they were interested in finding out how the re-opening of the courthouse was going.
There was brief talk about re-opening the courthouse to the public with no restrictions or procedures, but that was quickly shot down by the commissioners. While a few courthouse employees and members of the public are upset about the current requirements put in place, the commissioners opted to keep everything the same as it was last week and put the agenda item back up for discussion next week.
In weeks past, the commissioners had considered setting a date to resume meeting at the courthouse for Monday, June 1st. At Tuesday's meeting, district three commissioner Darren McKinney made the observation that with the social distancing guidelines in place, only four or five people would be able to fit into the commissioners room. As a result, they mad the decision to continue meeting at the fairgrounds until further notice.
There were three utility permits signed for district one and another one signed for district three. They also accepted bids for tabulation on grader blades, road and bridge items, non state spec rock and state spec rock.
The next regularly scheduled meeting will take place next Monday at the Osage County Fairgrounds at 10 a.m.
The Board of Osage County Commissioners elected to open the courthouse with certain limitations in place a week ago. Since then, there have been a few problems that the commissioners wanted to address at Monday morning's meeting. District one commissioner Randall Jones had one specific thing he felt the need to discuss.
Jones believes the county would be opening itself up for a lawsuit if they continue down the path they are currently on. Osage County District Attorney Mike Fisher explains what problems could arise, but Fisher says he is confident he could defend most cases in a court of law.
The other thing brought up was the importance of everyone continuing to be patient as the time goes on because this is an ever-evolving situation. District three commissioner Darren McKinney implored the public to stay calm throughout the process because the commissioners have everybody's best interest in mind.
For now, all policies and procedures will stay the same, but this is an agenda item that the commissioners will look at on a weekly basis.
When the COVID-19 outbreak first began, Osage County was one of the first counties that had a significant spike in cases, but the county has since leveled off with only 94 cases and eight deaths being reported. Osage County Emergency Manager Jerry Roberts is proud of the way his citizens have responded since that first early wave of cases.
Roberts is continuing to inform the public about a misconception when it comes to wearing gloves in public.
Roberts also says it is important for people to realize that wearing a mask will only prevent individuals from spreading the virus to others.