CIC to have final meeting on Tuesday/Zook 11/29/2010

The third and final meeting hosted by the Community Improvement Commission and the Hutchinson Planning Commission will be held Tuesday afternoon. The meeting is set for 5:30 at the Dillon nature Center. Two other meetings have been held to discuss the city's proposal to adopt the 2006 International Property maintenance Codes. Both were well attended.

The city wants to adopt the codes in hopes of improving upkeep of the city's older homes.

Reaction to the proposal has been met with mixed feelings. But with the city's housing stock aging and property owners reluctance to take care of their homes, the city feels its necessary to prevent homes from falling too far into disrepair. The city is also facing a long list of recommendations from the housing task force to improve housing. No word on when those recommendations will come before the council.

Again Tuesdays CIC meeting is set for 5:30 at the Dillon nature Center.


Farmer getting the last of the fall row crops harvested/nr 11/29/2010

TOPEKA - According to Kansas Agriculture Statistics Service, Kansas farmers continued getting the last of the row crops harvested as field conditions allowed, with only 3 percent of the sunflower acreage and 25 percent of the cotton acreage left to be harvested as of Sunday. Harvesting of sunflowers was 97 percent complete, well ahead of 70 percent last year and 91 percent for the 5-year average.

Cotton producers were held up by some wet field conditions in areas, but harvested 6 percent more last week to reach 75 percent of the cotton acreage stripped, well ahead of 26 percent last year and the 5-year average of 58 percent.

Ninety-five percent of the winter wheat in Kansas has emerged, ahead of 91 percent last year but behind the 5-year average of 97 percent. The condition of the wheat crop was rated 8 percent very poor, 17 percent poor, 38 percent fair, 33 percent good, and 4 percent excellent by the end of the week.


Topeka man sentenced to life for child abuse/Associated Press 11/29/2010

TOPEKA - A 58-year-old Topeka man convicted of fondling two children has been sentenced to life in prison.

Robert Donald Clark Jr. was convicted in 2009 of two counts of aggravated indecent liberties. Shawnee County Judge District Judge Cheryl Kingfisher on Monday ordered Clark to serve two life terms on the convictions.

Clark will be eligible for parole after serving 25 years in the custody of the Kansas Department of Corrections.

The Topeka Capital-Journal reported that the two girls were 11 and 9 years old when the abuse started. Overall, the assaults occurred for about 18 months

On Monday, Clark apologized to the family of the girls and to the victims. The victims are having emotional problems as a result of the assaults, a parent of the children said in court.


Sebelius expects challenge to health care law/Associated Press 11/29/2010

MANHATTAN - Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius says she fully expects the U.S. House to pass a bill to repeal the health care reform law.

But Sebelius said Monday during a Landon Lecture at Kansas State University that she thinks the law will withstand a court challenge.

The former Kansas governor says she is used to working with Republicans and looks forward to working with the House and others to implement the new law.

Sebelius says she has not spoken to Republican Gov.-elect Sam Brownback about the law or his opposition to it. Brownback has vowed to do the bare minimum as governor to implement the law and says he will resist changes as often as possible.


Get in the Holiday Spirit with Hutch Rec/nr 11/29/2010

The Hutch Rec Commission's annual Christmas Arts and Crafts Boutique will be on Saturday, Dec. 4 from 9 a-m to 4 p-m, at Memorial Hall.

They says they'll have several vendors on-hand selling fused glass, jewelry, paintings, crafts, accessories, baby items, jellies/jams, candles, and much more. There is no admission fee - simply bring your Christmas lists and get ready to shop, shop, shop!

For more information, call Hutch Rec at (620) 663-6179 or e-mail Tina Frees at

Another free event is the annual Gingerbread House Decorating, taking place on Dec. 4, 11, and 18 from 11 a-m to 2 p-m, at Keller Leisure Arts Center-West, next door to the Rec Commission's downtown office.

This event is designed for the whole family. Gingerbread House Decorating is one of the many Downtown Hutch holiday festivities each Saturday in December.