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Cheney Free Press
Cheney , Washington
January 22, 2015     Cheney Free Press
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January 22, 2015

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Page 4 Free Press Thursday, Janua 22,2015 The annual West Plains Chamber of Commerce State of the West Plains breakfast Jan. 8 was notable for many reasons. One in particular was the ab- sence of a representative from the city of Medical Lake. In an email, City Admin- istrator Doug Ross said cur- rent Mayor John Higgins was scheduled to speak at the breakfast of 190 area busi- nesses and civic leaders but was called out of town due to a family matter. Ross's schedule prevented him from filling in, as he has in the past, leaving no one to let those gathered know of the 2014 successes experienced in the city sur- rounded by lakes, nor of the challenges expected in 2015. That's unfortunate, even if due to unforeseen circum- stances, because Medical Lake has much to beproud about in 2014. For starters, and not listed in any degree of importance, the city successfully, and inex- pensively, completed a paving project of Brooks Road, help- ing repair the main connector between it and U.S. Highway 2 to the north. Medical Lake finally tore down the former Ball and Dodd Funeral Home at the comer of Brooks Road and Lefevre Street, creating potential business or other opportunities at a main intersection within the city, The city's wastewater treatment plant again received an Out- standing Wastewater Treatment Plant award for a perfect record in 2013, the fourth year in a row for the plant and no small feat and importance considering the plant's discharge is used to help maintain the water quality and levels in one of the best fishing lakes in the state, West Medical Lake. The city's contractual re- lationship with the Spokane County Sheriff's Office con- tinues to keep residents safe and crime stats relatively low.. In the quality of life column, Founder's Day and the Blue Waters Bluegrass Festival are annual popular events draw- ing people into the city from all parts of the region. Medical Lake continues to enjoy strong support from several volun- teer groups such as the Medi- cal Lake High School Alumni and Booster clubs, Friends for Children and Dollars for Scholars. According to informa- tion from the latter, $5,734.30 was raised in 2014 from just two events, bringing the total dollar amount to $27,950 that funded 50 scholarship awards. Since 2001, Medical Lake Dol- lars for Scholars have given out $413,430 in scholarship awards. Fairchild Air Force Base has always been a moving target when it comes to defense fund- ing or changes in the U.S. Air Force's mission, but Medical Lake seems to have adapted as best possible to these challeng- es. The changes have impacted the school district% enrollment, but not the quality of its educa- tion or programs, such as ath- letics. The Cardinals boys' cross country team won its second consecutive 1A state title, the track team also claimed a title in early June and the softball team also made a state tourna- ment appearance. And the de- cision recently to put lights on the highschool baseball dia- mond, done with community help, has paid off by bring- ing in a pod of the American Legion Wood Bat tournament, again bringing more people to the community. Medical Lake still faces chal- lenges in the coming year, just as all communities do. The' lack of sales tax money and reliance on real estate taxes and ever- tightening state dollars could impact the city's ability to stage infrastructure projects. Further changes surrounding Fairchild might also play a role, as might the possibility of a second sur- vival school at the base, with the latter maybe being some- thing for the positive. But so far, Medical Lake has done well in making itself a solid, family-oriented commu- nity. Keep up the hard work. Write to the Point during the By PAUL DELANEY StaffReporter It was supposed to have been a productive, to-do list shredding and checking off day Saturday. 1. Go catch week two of my grandson Logan's ice skating les- sons and see if he could cut down on the number of falls he had in week Paul Delaney one. Checks on both ac- counts. 2, I wanted to check out what kind of deals - and more importantly what trade- in policies -- my friendly hockey shop might offer to put my grandson in hockey skates. Check. 3. Grab some of that won- derfully cheap gas to make my daily 50-mile round trips to work more affordable. Boy does $1.71.9 today work better than the $4.50.9 when I first started trekking to Cheney in 2007. Check. 4. Make' trip to Comcast to pick up new modem so that the "Network interference, please try later," message didn't keep showing up when we try to access to Netflix. Check, kind of. The trip to the Xfinity store was surprisingly pain- less with the wait less than 15 minutes. It allowed me to pass the time talking hockey with one of the dozen other Vancouver Canucks fans in process of getting our home The installation was sire- the area. phone "ported over" from be- ple and accomplished con- It was what came next that ing handled by our cell phone necting a cord and cable. was agonizing, provider to our cable TV source Step two was to call the 1-855 When my wife came home began, activation number and listen she asked how was my after- After several calls fromto the pleasant automated noon? Comcast/Xfinity looking for voice that miraculously had Without hesitation, I blurt- account numbers, the land-me up and running in min- ed out the last words found in line conversion is still in utes. Check. the old theme song from thelimbo. Our trusty 924 prefix Excited to see if we could "Gilligan's Island" sitcom of we've had since 1984 is kept finally catch up on any new the 1960s. "A three-hour tour, so a handful of people in our "Mad Men" episodes, I fired up a three-hour tour." lives - plus, thankfully, all the smart hub and clicked on [ thought the modem issue, the. telemarketers - can call Nexflix. Again, I was greeted which periodically had prob- and leave messages we rarely by the "network interference" lems connecting our smart TV check, message, Damn! to the Internet, was all settled But back to the cable mo- weeks ago. That is when thedem/router activation. See Write to the Point page 5 Trains put the community at risk FREE SS Vol. 118-No. 40 Press Production Manager Randy Warwick Pressman Mark Cordes Sales Steve Barge DeeAnn Gibb Front Office Venus Bratsveen Dawn Chernak Editor John McCallum Reporters Paul Delaney AI Stover Graphics Brittani Montecucco John Myers Bookkeeper/Office Manager Debi Labish Publisher Harlan Shellabarger The Editorial Board is composed of Paul Delaney, AI Stover, Brittani Montecucco, Bill lift, John McCallum and Harlan Shellabarger The Cheney Free Press isThe Free Press re- published every Thursday quests that contributors by the Free Press Publish- observe the following dead- ing Company, William Ifft, lines, which will be strictly president. Periodical post- enforced: age paid at Cheney, Wash. 99004. Published at 1616 W. OBITUARIES. MEETINGS OF GOVERNMENT First Street, Cheney, Wash. AGENCIES - Tuesday, 10 a.m 99004. CHURCH CLUB MEETINGS.ALL SOCIAL NEWS Monday, noon POSTMASTER: Send DISPLAY ADVERTISING -- Monday, 4 p.m. address changes to: Cheney LEGAL NOTICES Monday, 5 o.m. Free Press, P.O. Box 218, CLASSIFIED ADVERTISING- Tuesday. 11 Cheney, Wash. 99004-0218. ID PUBLICATION # 102240 Rates: Addresses in Spokane County, $24 per year; $36 per year outside Spokane County; senior citizens in Spokane County, $22 per year. For other rates, call 235- 6184. Subscription cancellations are non-refundable! HOW TO CONTACT US Phone: 235-6184 Fax: 235-2887 ernaih cfp @ cheneyfreepress.corn I personally visited the grain isn't a hand we can afford to happen if more proposed ter- train wreck in Cheney Friday lose. Thursday morning's in- minals are built on the coast, morning, Jan. 16, and agree cident is a sobering realization doubling our total rail traffic with John Taves, Cheney City that train derailments happen, that is already the highest in the Councilman, that the block- whether minor like this one or region. Spokane is considered age of Cheney-Spokane Road catastrophic like the oil train ac- one of the major"choke points" would delay emergency vehi- cident in 2013 in Lac-M6gantic, of the coal and oil movement cles, and shows the risks facing Quebec, Canada that killed 47 from the Great Plains to the the public fromtrain accidents, people, forever devastating a Pacific Coast, most of Cheney quoted from "Train derailment community and spoiling their being in the oil blast zone. blocks Cheney-Spokane Road waterways. With increased rail traffic, near State Route 904," Spokes- Current oil and coal trains more derailments, fires and man Review, Jan. 16. as well as grain trains put our intersection obstructions are Washington state shouldn't communities at risk, and it is gamble with train safety, this terrifying to think what could See Letters page 5 John McCallum Editor Main contact for editorial coverage. Cov- ers all Cheney government, communi~, school district news and events, as well as Cheney High School sports. /'mac @ cheneyfreepress, com A1 Stover Paul Delaney Staff Reporter Staff Reporter Covers all Medical Lake government, Covers alI Medical Lake High School and communily and school district news, as Eastern Washington University sports well as Airway Heights news and Cheney and news. Contact for miscellaneous High School sports, sports. pdelaney @ cheneJffreepmss.c~