Archive for Bonner Springs

Bonner Springs Historic Preservation Society revived

Roger Miller helped publish a pictorial history book about Bonner Springs. It is on sale at the Wyandotte County Museum.


by Murrel Bland

The Bonner Springs Historic Preservation Society has been resurrected. That was the message from Roger Miller, who spoke to the Wyandotte County Historical Society Sunday, March 19, at the Wyandotte County Museum. About 50 persons attended the quarterly meeting.

Miller, a former president of the Historical Society, was a one of the prime movers in reorganizing the Preservation Society. Miller is the former owner of a Bonner Springs pharmacy.

Miller said the Preservation Society was organized in 1973 when the city of Bonner Springs celebrated its 75th anniversary of incorporation. One of the Preservation Society’s major projects was saving the old high school, which became a community center.

Several years ago, the Preservation Society lost many of its active members. Some died; others dropped out and turned to other interests.

But the Preservation Society now has been registered with the Kansas Secretary of State as a nonprofit organization. Interested members meet to discuss future plans at 10 a.m. Saturday mornings at the Bonner Springs Library.

Miller also told a brief history of Bonner Springs. He said it can trace its roots back to the days of Henry Tiblow, a Delaware Indian who ran the ferry across the Kansas River starting in 1830. Each August, the city celebrates “Tiblow Days” in downtown Bonner Springs.

The town was named after Robert Bonner, a New York newspaper publisher who was a big-time race horse owner. The idea was to encourage Bonner and other horse owners to bring their stock to race at a track north of town. However, the track was never built.

Spring water in the area was analyzed; its mineral content was touted as having health benefits. The Bonner Springs Improvement Club created a promotional brochure in 1907 listing these springs. Special trains brought visitors to the area. However, these efforts failed.

Miller, in cooperation with Arcadia Publishers, Charleston, S.C., has published a pictorial history book on Bonner Springs. It is on sale at the gift store at the Wyandotte County Museum.

The Wyandotte County Historical Society also presented its annual awards.

Dr. Mary Davidson Cohen, representing the Cohen Charitable Trust, received the Garland M. Smith Award. Dr. Cohen was recognized for donating $75,000, which will be used to buy a scanner that will greatly help access historic records. It should be operational later this spring. The Smith Award, which is the highest honor the Historical Society bestows, is named after the late Garland Smith, a longtime society board member and volunteer.

Mary Tenney Gray, who was born in 1833, received the Virginia Smith Award. Gray was most influential in unifying women’s clubs of Kansas and Missouri. She organized the first such association and was its first president. The preamble to that association reads “the object of this society shall be to promote a better acquaintance among thoughtful women…to raise the standard of women’s education and attainments.” She died in 1904. This award is presented annually. Dr. Glandon was a longtime museum volunteer and the first woman to be elected Historical Society president. She also taught history at the University of Missouri at Kansas City.

Dr. Dan Desko was named “Historian of the Year.” He was recognized for helping preserve the history of the B-25 bomber plant that was operational from 1941 until 1945 in the Fairfax Industrial District. The North American Aviation plant produced more than 6,600 aircraft and employed more than 60,000 persons. Dr. Desko also accepted the Margaret Landis Award for the B-25 history project. Landis was a longtime Wyandotte County historian who wrote several articles including those on the Rosedale community.

The Shepherd’s Center of Kansas City, Kansas, received the V.J. Lane Award. The Shepherd’s Center provides educational and health-related services for older adults. Many of the programs deal with the history of Wyandotte County. Melissa Brune Bynum, the executive director of the Shepherd’s Center, accepted the award. Also recognized was Ed Shutt II, a past-president of the Historical Society who presents programs on Wyandotte County to Shepherd’s Center members. Lane was a newspaper publisher and a founder of the Wyandotte County Historical Society.

John (Tiny) McTaggart, the president of the Historical Society, presented the Special President’s Award to Hal Walker. Walker is a past president of the Society and served as chief counsel for the Unified Government. He presently is serving in his second term as a Unified Government commissioner of Wyandotte County and Kansas City, Kansas.

Brenda Cantwell Miller was recognized as “Volunteer of the Year.” Miller, a retired Kansas City, Kansas, school teacher, helped edit historical society publications.

Murrel Bland is the former editor of The Wyandotte West and The Piper Press.

Elementary school lunch menus

Kansas City, Kansas, Public Schools
Monday, March 20
Mandarin orange chicken, fried rice, celery sticks, baby carrots, tropical fruit, fruit salad and milk. Alternate entrees: Uncrustable sandwich, fruit salad, yogurt muffin basket.
Tuesday, March 21
Nacho bites, tomato salsa, refried beans, mandarin oranges, fruit salad and milk. Alternate entrees: Southwestern chef salad, hummus plate, yogurt parfait.
Wednesday, March 22
Corn dog, tater tots, grape tomatoes, orange wedges, fruit salad and milk. Alternate entrees: Garden chef salad, fruit salad, yogurt muffin basket.
Thursday, March 23
Mozzarella sticks, marinara sauce, salad, banana, fruit salad and milk. Alternate entrees: Southwestern chef salad, hummus plate, yogurt parfait.
Friday, March 24
French toast sticks, sausage patties, ranch corn, cauliflower, apple slices, fruit salad and milk. Alternate entrees: Garden chef salad, fruit salad, yogurt muffin basket.

Turner Public Schools
Monday, March 20
No school. Professional development.
Tuesday, March 21
Chicken nuggets with Italian bread; cheeseburger, garden salad, corn, mandarin oranges, fruit; vegetarian chef salad, corn, mandarin oranges, fruit and Italian bread.
Wednesday, March 22
Chicken patty; fish patty, mashed potatoes with gravy, glazed carrots, peaches, fruit, roll; strawberry chicken salad, glazed carrots, peaches, fruit and roll.
Thursday, March 23
Hot dog; chicken and waffles, tater tots, garden salad, banana orange mix, fruit; Cobb salad, banana orange mix, fruit, fruit streusel muffin.
Friday, March 24
Cheese pizza; corn dog, garden salad, broccoli with dip, pineapple, fruit; popcorn chicken salad, broccoli with dip, pineapple, fruit, fruit streusel muffin.

Piper Public Schools
Monday, March 20 – Friday, March 24
Spring break. No school.

Bonner Springs-Edwardsville Public Schools
Monday, March 20
Spring break. No school.
Tuesday, March 21
Chicken nachos with white queso; cheeseburger, garden salad, pintos, mandarin oranges, fruit; taco salad, pintos, mandarin oranges, fruit and cornbread.
Wednesday, March 22
Chicken patty; roast turkey, mashed potatoes with gravy, glazed carrots, peaches, fruit, roll; strawberry chicken salad, glazed carrots, peaches, fruit and roll.
Thursday, March 23
Barbecue rib on bun; stuffed taco, tater tots, garden salad, banana orange mix, fruit; Cobb salad, banana orange mix, fruit, fruit streusel muffin.
Friday, March 24
Cheese pizza; corn dog; fish sandwich, garden salad, broccoli with dip, pineapple, fruit; popcorn chicken salad, broccoli with dip, pineapple, fruit, fruit streusel muffin.

All menus from all districts subject to change.

Legislators express different views on fiscal matters

Views
Opinion column

by Murrel Bland

Tom Burroughs and Steve Fitzgerald have different views about how to solve the budget shortfall facing the state of Kansas.

Burroughs, representing the 33rd District that includes the Muncie community, Edwardsville and Bonner Springs, and Fitzgerald, who represents the Piper community, Lansing and Leavenworth, presented their views at a legislative coffee Saturday, March 11, at the Bonner Springs Library. About 50 persons attended; the League of Women Voters and the NAACP of Bonner Springs, sponsored the event.

Burroughs is a moderate Democrat and Fitzgerald is a conservative Republican. Both voted against a budget proposal that Gov. Sam Brownback proposed. Now legislators are trying to find a tax plan that would solve the state’s immediate shortfall of about $280 million. Brownback had proposed increasing the tax on alcohol and tobacco and business filing fees.

A proposal to increase state income tax and eliminate the “LLC loophole” passed both houses, but didn’t quite have enough votes to withstand a veto by the governor. This loophole exempts small business owners from paying state income taxes. This was supposed to boost the state’s economy. However, its critics said it did not, but simply was a “free ride” for business. Burroughs said he didn’t vote for the proposal because it didn’t really address the needs of the state adequately.

Fitzgerald said that one of the reasons that the “LLC loophole” didn’t work as well as planned was because two of the state’s major industries—agriculture and oil and gas—were suffering.

In addition to the current shortfall, legislators are having to come up with a new funding formula for K-12 education. This comes after a recent decision from the Kansas Supreme Court that ruled school funding is not adequate. The court did not specify an amount, but gave the legislators until June 30 to come up with an acceptable plan. There are committees in both the Kansas House and Senate working on this formula.

Various dollar amounts have been suggested as to how much funding may be needed. They vary from $372 million to $700 million, according to Kathy Damron, a lobbyist for the Kansas City, Kansas, Area Chamber of Commerce. Fitzgerald said it may be possible for districts to draw on excessive reserves to meet this obligation. Fitzgerald acknowledged the court action. However, he said that the state spending on schools is at an all-time high.

Both Fitzgerald and Burroughs discussed the retirement fund for state employees. Both said that those presently receiving retirements are safe—that the state can’t draw on those funds. Burroughs was critical of delaying payments to the retirement fund.

Burroughs said that state employees don’t receive that much money and have not received a raise for about nine years.

There have been a couple of proposals to increase the motor fuels tax. A Kansas Senate bill would boost the tax 5 cents a gallon; the Kansas House has a proposal for an 11-cent increase. This revenue would fund work on highways. Burroughs said that about $2 billion has been taken from the Kansas Department of Transportation to shore up shortfalls in other areas. Kansas has per capita more miles of roadways than any other state.

Conservative critics such as Jeff Glendening said that the state has allowed “spending to spiral out of control.” Glendening said an efficiency report in 2016 showed how about $2 billion could be saved over a five-year period; however, these suggestions were not implemented. Glendening is the state director for Americans for Prosperity.

Murrel Bland is the former editor of The Wyandotte West and The Piper Press. He is the executive director of Business West.