The Daily Press Daily Times Leader | AP iAtom feed Copyright The Daily Press 2015-02-27T15:25:09-05:00 snow causes power outages2015-02-27T15:25:09-05:002015-02-27T15:25:09-05:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times LeaderWest Point Chief Administrative Officer Randy Jones said the Water and Light Department received about 48 service calls Wednesday night and Thursday morning.“There were about four primary three-phase service lines taken out due to falling branches,” Jones said. “A tree in one yard fell across the street and took out a power pole and transformer on Broad Street and those residents were without power until about 6:30 a.m. Thursday.”He said other major outages occurred in Clark Circle, Marston Court, Southern Colony and Converse Drive. According to Jones, crews were still working on restoring power to some individual homes as of Thursday.“There were some folks who had limbs fall on their service lines and it only affected their house,” he said. “Some had enough damage that they had to have electricians come in and do some repairs before we were able to reconnect their electricity.”He said the electric department ran three line crews throughout the night, including alternates and two retirees who were called in to assist.About 5,000 4-County Electric Power Association customers were also powerless throughout the evening, according to 4-County’s Facebook page. As of press time Thursday, there were still about 600 4-County customers in Clay County without power.Clay County Emergency Management Director Kerrie Gentry-Blissard said she coordinated with the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency throughout the night, as well as law enforcement and utility crews. “We got the word out later in the evening for residents to stay off the roads because we were having so many wrecks,” Blissard said. “Altogether, it wound up not being too severe.”Clay County Sheriff Eddie Scott said there were no major accidents or injuries in the county Wednesday night.“We had about 14 assists where folks slid off into ditches and needed help getting out,” Scott said. “We made about five transports to assist medical personal and dispatchers in getting where they needed to go.”He said it was a busy night for the Clay County Sheriff’s Department, and all emergency responders, but that the community was lucky.“We were very fortunate,” Scott said. “As bad as the road conditions were, we didn’t have anyone get seriously hurt.”West Point, MS JOSH PRESLEYHeavy snow causes power outagesDaily Times to move ahead to advertise fire truck bids2015-02-27T15:23:55-05:002015-02-27T15:23:55-05:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times LeaderThe board was originally supposed to meet Wednesday, but, according to Chancery Clerk Amy Berry, it decided to postpone the meeting due to the winter weather. Berry said the board would vote whether to approve advertisement for sealed bids for the trucks, which would be paid for with a combination of grant money and notes.“We received a Rural Fire Protection Assistance Program grant totaling $140,000,” Berry said. “Once we show the state proof that we’ve paid for the trucks, they will reimburse us the $140,000.”Volunteer Fire Coordinator B.J. McClenton said the two trucks would come from Emergency Equipment Professionals, Inc. of Horn Lake.“Purchasing two together lowered the cost a little bit,” McClenton said. “We got $70,000 for two applications and per the grant we have 90 days to purchase the trucks and then they will deal out the funds to the county.”He said the trucks were 2015 models with Cummins engines, 1,000 gallon pumpers and interior ladder storage. He said the new trucks would replace outdated trucks in the fire department’s fleet.“These trucks only stay in National Fire Protection Association compliance for about 15 years,” McClenton said. “They have to be able to pump a certain amount of water in a certain amount of time, and some of the trucks we have are really not up to par.”Berry said the trucks had been needed since about 2011, and the notes used to purchase them would be five-year notes.“It’s first come, first served,” Berry said. “The funds weren’t there in 2012, and then in 2013, there was such a backlog of applications that we were at the bottom of the list, so we were happy to be approved this year.”McClenton said one of the trucks was ready to be delivered as soon as possible, while the second would be available in March or April.“We look to have the delivered by the beginning of May if not sooner,” he said. West Point, MSJOSH PRESLEYCounty to move ahead to advertise fire truck bidsDaily Times pets warm during cold weather2015-02-27T15:22:11-05:002015-02-27T15:22:11-05:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times Leader“Technically we don’t close,” Lisa Henley, director of the WPCCAS. said. “Someone is at the shelter checking on the animals at least twice a day. During the cold weather, we keep an eye on the water for the dogs to make sure it hasn’t frozen over.”Henley said the pipes at the shelter were all replaced last year after the temperatures plunged to 3 degrees and the pipes split and burst. She said it made everyone aware that the dogs need to be kept dry during cold weather. The blue barrel dog houses have a material called “felt” that was donated by Weyerhaeuser that keeps the house warm and the dogs cannot chew through.“We have industrial pooper scoopers to keep the kennels clean without having to hose them out,” Henley said. “The small dogs have coats to keep them warm plus blankets and dog beds in the houses contained in the kennels. You won’t see any of our dogs shivering.”Henley said the cats are always kept inside the facility with the exception of the feral cats who have taken up residence on the property.“If we could tame the outside cats, they would be inside too,” Henley said. “They might paw at your hand, but that’s as close as they come to any of us. They have small houses with beds to get into when it’s cold. They know this is a place to be warm and fed. All of them have been trapped and altered after coming here. We don’t need feral kittens running around.”Henley said if someone drives by the shelter and it appears no one is there, someone has probably just left.“We treat the animals here just like our own pets at home,” Henley said. “Right now all our puppies are in foster homes being kept inside by loving families. We had plenty of people who offered to foster them and we are taking advantage of their generosity.”Dr. LeAnn Simpson of the West Point Animal Clinic works with the animal shelter testing the animals that are brought in for infectious diseases.“When people ask what I recommend they do with their pets during the cold, I tell them to bring them inside,” Simpson said. “If it’s too cold for you to be comfortable, it’s too cold for a pet.”Simpson said outside animals need shelter from the wind, cold and rain. If an animal is wet and cold, it is miserable and may become sick. Simpson said it helps to have doghouses face away from the wind and have some sort of windbreak at the entrance of the doghouse to keep the warmth inside. “Doghouses need blankets, hay or something in them to help the dog stay warm,” Simpson said. “Heated water bowls are great to keep the water from freezing. It won’t over heat the water. It will just keep it from freezing.”Simpson said if people will treat animals the same way we want to be treated ourselves, they would be welcome inside the home during inclement weather.For more information, like the WPCCAS on Facebook. West Point, MSDonna SummerallKeeping pets warm during cold weatherDaily Times honors Vietnam Vets2015-02-25T12:45:22-05:002015-02-25T12:45:22-05:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times Leader Regent Gaynell Duke presented the group with a flag recognizing the veterans of the Vietnam War. “At our state conference earlier this month, every regent was presented a flag in remembrance of those brave men and women who served during the unpopular war,” Duke said. “Mississippi Regent Billie Breedlove asked all members of the DAR to recognize those veterans who did not return to the hero's welcome they so richly deserved.” Duke said veterans were in attendance at the conference and were pleased to be honored for the service they gave their country almost 50 years ago. “We ladies of the DAR want to do something to let these members of our military know we owe them a huge debt of thanks for their service,” Duke said. “So many young men fought and died for this country and were never appreciated for their sacrifice. That was a sad chapter in our nation's history.” Duke said the DAR will plan something special for veterans this November to show the DAR's respect for all those who've served so bravely. The February meeting was also in honor of President's Day. Lucille South, DAR member. presented an “Interview with George Washington.” “I asked President Washington a lot of questions which history has so graciously answered,” South said. “ I have the answers that the president would have given if he were able to today, let me share a few with you.” Duke said that if asked about the “Cherry Tree Incident” Washington would have said the story is a myth. It was published in 1809 after his death by biographer M.L. Weems. “When asked about having wooden teeth,” South said. “Washington started losing his teeth in his 20's. By the time he was president at age 57, he had lost all but one. Over the years he had four sets of false teeth, none of them wooden.” South said there had long been a rumor that Washington was bulletproof. She said he had been shot several times during his military career but none of his wounds had been serious. These were only a few of the questions that South answered for the late president. South is a treasure trove of knowledge and information about the history of the United States. For information, visit Follow Donna Summerall on Twitter @life_donnas or @dtleader.West Point, MSDonna SummerallDAR honors Vietnam VetsDaily Times marks 20 year anniversary at the Wellness Center2015-02-24T13:02:04-05:002015-02-24T13:02:04-05:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times Leader “We had more than 200 people visit us this morning,” Tracy Stebbins Arnett, director of the Wellness Center said. “We have been thrilled with the turnout. We had a lot of people come to take advantage of the free week we're offering. We saw a lot of new faces come in the door that were ready to feel and look their best.” Arnett said the facility could not have reached the 20 year milestone without support from the community to keep it going. “We looked back over our 20 years and found the first person to join,” Arnett said. “Nancy Hall was the first member and has been with us the entire 20 years.” Arnett said Mary Ann Shows and Becky Brabham had come in at 4:45 a.m. to blow up balloons and decorate the building. She said the ladies had volunteered to do the job without being asked. Arnett said her entire staff is always ready to pitch in whenever they are needed. “I've been coming to the Wellness Center for almost 3 years,” Lynn Jantz, a client, said. “I have back problems and started coming for therapy. I can tell when I've missed a few sessions and I get back to my exercise routine to feel better.” Katie Ballard has been a member of the Wellness Center for more than 10 years and said she works out to maintain her fitness level. “I run half marathons and participate in triathlons,” Ballard said. “I come to stay in shape. I did cardio and abs as my workout today. It's a wonderful facility and the trainers help you reach your goal and maintain it.” Arnett said she loves being part of the Wellness Center. She said the center offered a social atmosphere for all ages and races. It's very much a microcosm of West Point itself, she said. It offers something for everyone. “I've been coming here for 4 years,” Larry Brownlee, a member, said. “I workout to build muscle mass. It's a great stress reliever. I do free weights and super sets to help build endurance. I love coming here. Everyone welcomes me by name when I come in the door and makes me feel at home. It's the perfect place to come to stay in shape. Wellness Center hours are 5:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday. 5:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday and 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday. For more information, like the Wellness Center on Facebook Follow Donna Summerall on Twitter @life_donnas or @dtleader. West Point, MSDonna SummerallMonday marks 20 year anniversary at the Wellness CenterDaily Times Ellis talks legislation2015-02-24T11:55:11-05:002015-02-24T11:54:25-05:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times Leadernews@dailytimesleader.comWest Point and Clay County residents had the opportunity to learn about the ins and outs of state legislature during the last month as part of the West Point Clay County Growth Alliance's "Issues and Eggs" forum.The four-week event, which featured 8 a.m. question and answer sessions with local representatives and senators at City Hall, concluded Monday with a visit from Rep. Tyrone Ellis.Ellis provided attendees with an update on the current legislative session, and discussed topics ranging from economic development to inmate rehabilitation. "Anything I tell you today invariably will change," Ellis said. "We're just receiving sentence bills in the House this week, and we don't know what's going to happen between the House and the Senate in the next 10 days."He said one of the items on the agenda for this legislative session was to tweak House Bill 585. The law, which took effect on July 1, was intended to avert prison population growth and was projected to save the state $266 million a year.Ellis said that state legislature came to the conclusion that some inmates were spending too much time in the Mississippi Department of Corrections."If someone goes to prison for 30 years for buying or selling drugs, the cost of that comes out of your pockets," he said. "Citizens have to pay for food, housing and health care. We decided that we should be more intense with our rehabilitation programs instead of just warehousing humans."He said the bill needed tweaking due to its effect on parole dates for individuals who were in MDOC prior to the law taking effect."The law retroactively removed parole dates for inmates who were already incarcerated, which you technically can't do," Ellis said. "One of the big things we're working on is a way to reinstate those parole dates."West Point, MSNo author availableRep. Ellis talks legislationDaily Times investigates burglary, vandalism2015-02-24T11:53:27-05:002015-02-24T11:53:27-05:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times LeaderAbout midnight Feb. 1, officers responded to the 1200 block of South Eshman Avenue in reference an alleged automobile burglary and suspicious individual. According to the incident report, the homeowner saw an individual "nosing around" his property. The owner gave chase and engaged in a short struggle with the suspect, according to the report. The owner said the offender got away and was last seen running toward West Point High School, and he believed the offender may have suffered minor injuries in the struggle.WPPD Chief Investigator Albert Lee said that, upon investigation, officers discovered that the offender had entered or attempted to enter about six automobiles in the nearby area.The victim said the offender was a black man about 5-foot-7 with a mustache, salt and pepper hair wearing a black hoodie, green cargo pants and a green backpack.About 11:30 a.m. Feb. 1, officers responded to the parking lot behind Cafe Ritz on Commerce Street in reference to an alleged burglary from an automobile. According to the incident report, the owner returned to their car and discovered their purse was not in its original position. The victim said an undetermined amount of money and a knife were taken from the purse.About noon Feb. 2, an individual came to WPPD to report that someone had stolen an iPad from her automobile on Court Street. The victim said there were other valuables inside the vehicle but only the iPad, along with a purple case, was taken. The serial number for the tablet was DLXFC10BDJHF.West Point, MSNo author availableWPPD investigates burglary, vandalismDaily Times donates to WP schools2015-02-23T13:23:50-05:002015-02-23T13:23:50-05:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times LeaderWPSD Community Relations Director Nancy Young said TVA made donations to West Point High School, Fifth Street Junior High and South Side Elementary."They've done this for the past several years," Young said. "The money is to be used for science, technology, engineering and math, whether that's workshops for different teachers to attend, or classroom implements."TVA Engineer Bob Becher said the organization was a partner in education with schools in each of the seven states it services."It's a good program," Becher said. "Each TVA office supports a different school. Mine has South Side and Fifth Street, while the Caledonia office as West Point High School."TVA Caledonia Business Support Representative Pam Scott said the partner in education program was designed to assist schools in providing quality education that ensures the future workforce and customer base to have knowledge and necessary skills to meet the challenges of the future."I have two children who attend West Point High School, so it gives me great pleasure to be part of a company that is highly interested in the future education of our children."Young said the donations were very beneficial to students and teachers, who are continually required to deal with limited funding."It's really helpful to have those funds to improve the quality of learning and activities for our students," she said. "i wish we had more people who were able to support us, either monetarily or through volunteer work.'West Point, MSDTL Staff ReportsTVA donates to WP schoolsDaily Times years of wellness2015-02-23T13:09:48-05:002015-02-23T13:09:48-05:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times Leader “We have something for everyone,” Stebbins said. “It doesn't matter what your level of fitness or age, we will find the perfect regiment that will get you to your goal.” Leon Kelley, a fitness instructor at the center, said the public can come in Monday from 5:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. to celebrate the 20 year anniversary with the staff. “People can register for door prizes,” Kelley said. “We'll have cake, balloons, healthy snacks and free guest passes for Feb. 23 – 27 for non – members so they can try the equipment, talk to trainers and see what we have to offer.” Kelley said the staff of the Wellness Center wants to help people become healthy and stay in shape. He said a healthy West Point is the goal of all the staff. “We've been part of the community for 20 years,” Kelley said. “We must be doing something right.” The Wellness Center offers Mass Training, P.A.C.E. Classes for senior citizens, and has recently added Suspension Training, according to Arnett. “Suspension Training is brand new,” Arnett said. “It offers strength training and cardio in a 20 minute workout. It's fast and quite challenging. It works muscles in a different way and reaps good results.” Stebbins said the center offers a “Bridge to Wellness” plan to introduce new clients to what the Wellness Center can do specifically for them. “We want everyone to be healthy,” Stebbins said. “With this plan, a client needs to see their primary care physician and get their signature to say they are in good enough health to work with us. After the doctor signs the form, we waive the $100 sign up fee and the first month is $15.” Stebbins said the client will be set up with a trainer who specializes in the kind of activities are the most beneficial and the road to better health can begin. “In the 20 years I've been here, I've seen a lot of attitudes toward fitness change,” Stebbins said. “Originally clients came here primarily to look better. Now people are more interested in feeling better. I think that comes with the influx of baby boomers who are in their 50's and 60's and want to stay healthy for as long as possible.” Sitting has become the new smoking, Stebbins said. The sedentary lifestyle is now the enemy and Stebbins would like to help improve a client's quality of life. Sitting behind a desk all day and not moving around is detrimental to a person's health and well being according to Stebbins. Mary Ann Shows work with the seniors in the People with Arthritis Can Exercise (P.A.C.E.) classes 9:30 – 10:30 a.m. Monday, Wednesday and Friday. “We have about 40 active members in the class,” Shows said. “The oldest is 93. It is so important to continue to move as we age to keep out heart rates up and our muscles and joints in motion. It's a fun class and they enjoy socializing as much as the exercise.” Wellness Center hours are 5:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 5:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday and 1 – 5 p.m. Sunday. For more information, like the Wellness Center on Facebook. Follow Donna Summerall on Twitter @life_donnas or @dtleader.West Point, MSDonna Summerall20 years of wellnessDaily Times football coach departs OHA2015-02-20T13:08:17-05:002015-02-20T13:08:17-05:00Copyright 2010 Daily Times LeaderRaider Head Coach Tony Stanford accepted an offensive-line coaching position at Starkville Academy Wednesday, multiple sources confirmed. Oak Hill Academy Headmaster Yandell Harris said he learned the news Wednesday morning.“(Tony Stanford) will be headed to Starkville Academy as its new offensive-line coach,” Harris said. “We are starting our process of finding a new coach now. The wheels are in motion. We are looking for some quality names and hope to start interviews before Spring Break. We wish Coach Stanford well at his next position.”Starkville Academy Athletics Director Glenn Schmidt confirmed Stanford’s hire but declined to comment further.Stanford said he learned of the opening at Starkville Academy three weeks ago and saw an opportunity that was good for him.“It was an opportunity to get closer to home (Louisville) and still be able to coach football,” Stanford said. “I am able to get back to my first love, which is coaching offensive linemen. Starkville Academy is a good school and good football program. It was the right thing to do. I enjoyed my time at Oak Hill Academy and enjoyed how hard the players worked in the weight room and on the field.” West Point, MSBY WILL NATIONSHead football coach departs OHADaily Times