In the Jan 7 edition, Silex R-I School District revealed a new superintendent, Rod Hamlet after David Deets announced his retirement. Hamlet had served as principal for three years, with over twenty years of experience as a teacher and administrator.
On Jan 11, local judges of the 45th circuit court approved a document that made presiding Judge Patrick Flynn the appointing authority over all non-statutory state paid positions. This ignited a feud between Judge Flynn and circuit court clerk Karla Allsbury that led to her being forcibly removed from the courthouse grounds later in the year. The legality of this decision is now being determined in state court.
The late Mark Cross announced his retirement from office on Jan 14. Cross, who served as Mayor for a decade, accomplished many great things for the City of Troy including the building of a public pool and the addition of a traffic signal at E. Cherry St. and Lincoln Dr. Alderman and board president Ron Sconce became interim Mayor of Troy.
The Troy Chamber of Commerce named Shiloh Werkmeister and Les Ellison Man and Woman of the Year on Jan 24.
In February, Michael Short was named new publisher of The Lincoln County Journal and the Troy Free Press after being in the newspaper business for over 23 years as well as the publisher of The Elsberry Democrat since 2005.
On Feb 15, four area fire departments responded to a home explosion near Hwy KK and Walker Rd. The home was completely destroyed but luckily the residents were not home at the time of the explosion.
The Lincoln County Prosecuting office was approved for a court facility dog after interviewing with CHAMPS, a fully accredited non-profit organization that trains and places service dogs. The pup will be utilized to help put children and adults at ease while discussing traumatic events or testifying in court.
The Elsberry R-II Board of Education announced in March that the district would be moving to a four-day school week for the 2020-2021 school year. Students now attend school Tuesday through Friday, beginning their school day at 7:45 a.m. and concluding at 3:35 p.m.
On March 14, over 250 veterans, Lincoln County Kickers and other area residents gathered at the Troy Knights of Columbus hall, raising $14,500 for Central Missouri Honor Flight at their fourth annual dinner dance.
The Lincoln County Commission declared a formal state of emergency as local precautions against the Coronavirus increase. Covid-19 testing increased as more residents came in contact with affected persons. On March 26, two positive cases were announced by the Health Department.
Area schools began closing mid-March to combat student exposure to Covid-19. They remained closed for the rest of the 2019-2020 school year after Governor Parsons announced on April 9 that all Missouri K-12 schools would close their doors, ending weeks of questions of whether or not students would physically attend school.
Just a few days later on April 12, Parsons issued the stay at home order to combat the spread of Coronavirus in Missouri. The order took affect on April 15 and was to remain in effect until April 24. Parsons stated that, “There comes a time when we have to make major sacrifices in our lives. Many of us make sacrifices everyday but now, more than ever, we must all make sacrifices.”
The city of Winfield board of alderman unanimously approved an ordinance to include its police officers in the retirement system provided by the Missouri Local Government Employees Retirement System, or LAGERS, during their monthly meeting on April 13. Under state law, the current and future police officers of Winfield would be eligible for the same retirement benefits as all other covered employees under LAGERS.
In May, under the CARES act, Lincoln County was allocated $6,923,403 in federal aid to cover the area’s local fiscal year budget due to the pandemic as part of Missouri’s Coronavirus relief fund.
It was announced in May that Lincoln County placed 3rd during the 4-H Feeding Missouri food Drive after raising 22,230 meals to feed hungry families. The donations went directly to Feeding Missouri, a coalition of the states six major food banks that provide hunger relief through a network of more than 1,600 community based food programs in every Missouri county.
On May 28, Mike Marlo began his duties leading the Lincoln County Fire Department 1 as Fire Chief, after a lifetime as a first responder who started his career with the West Overland Fire Department in St. Louis in 1977.
Many area establishments reopened their doors during the month of May, with several restaurants making the decision to ban indoor smoking inside their businesses.
In June, the voters of Lincoln County decided who would represent them for the future.
Harold Horner defeated James Roberts in the Ward 1 Alderman race in the Troy city election. David Norman was elected unopposed as Ward 2 Alderman, and Rachel Dunard defeated three other candidates to win the Ward 3 race.
Patrick Flannigan was elected Mayor of Moscow Mills. Steve Ashton was elected unopposed as Ward 1 Alderman and Marsha Mills won the Ward 2 race unopposed as well.
Michael Short defeated a pair of candidates to win the mayoral race in Elsberry, and Terrie Harper won the city’s Ward 1 race. Scott Miller claimed the Ward 2 Alderman seat unopposed and Teresa Davis defeated William Boswell to win the Ward 3 race.
Keith Aubuchon was elected Mayor of Foley. Karl Buddenhagan and Bill Thornhill won unopposed in their bids in Ward 1 and 2.
Six members were elected to the Lincoln County Emergency Board. Terry Foster was elected unopposed as Chairman and Nathan Schnelle won the District 1 seat unopposed as well. Linda Sullivan and Steven Fair also won District 1 seats on the board. Randy Davis, Adam Stanek and Lisa Sitler won District 2 seats on the board.
Neal Grateke, Kay Hall and Kim Weatherford were elected to the Lincoln County R-I School District Board. Paul Behle, Kevin Kaimann and Penny Zerr claimed seats on the Lincoln County R-IV School District Board.
Bill Colbert earned a spot on the Winfield-Foley Fire Protection Board. Tom Bruns and James E. Hurt II each won seats on the Northwest Fire Protection Board, and Greg Westermann was elected to Hawk Point’s Fire Protection District Board.
A peaceful demonstration in protest of racism and police brutality took place in Troy’s Fairgrounds Park on June 10 with several Troy police officers in attendance to showing their support and solidarity.
Ground was broken for the 2-year project to construct the Lincoln County Workforce Center in a ceremony attended by Gov. Mike Parsons, state representatives, Ranken Technical College Staff and Lincoln County R-III School District staff members. The facility will be the first workforce development center in the area. Four programs will be offered at the center; building and construction trades, agriculture and aquaponics, renewable energy and advanced manufacturing.
See next week's edition of The Lincoln County Journal for July through December of the Year in Review.