(AP) — A preliminary federal report says a biplane performing acrobatics flipped over into an inverted flat spin before crashing 10 minutes after takeoff from Enid Woodring Regional Airport last week. The pilot 55 year-old Randy Lee Harris and 25-year-old Air Force Lt. Dale Bryan Shillington of Vance Air Force Base died July 21 when the Runyan/Harris Skybolt 300 experimental aircraft crashed near Fairmont. The undated National Transportation Safety Board report says an area resident watched the airplane barrel roll, climb and tumble, then roll over into an inverted flat spin. The witness watched it disappear behind trees then he heard the crash. The report says Shillington's wife told the agency the flight was arranged "last minute." A final report including a possible cause of the crash generally takes several months to complete.
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FC)—A Stillwater man, who was the subject of a silver alert issued by the Payne County Sheriff's Office was killed in a single-vehicle crash east of Hennessey early this morning. Oklahoma Highway Patrol officials said 90 year-old Robert Reichman was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash that occurred in 1:00am hour on State Highway 51 six miles east of Hennessey. According to the report, Reichman was westbound when his Toyota Tacoma departed the road and hit a gravel embankment. The truck then rolled a quarter time coming to rest on the passenger side. The accident remains under investigation.
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SM)--A lawsuit seeking to fix a 22-year public school funding error is moving forward in the Oklahoma Supreme Court. Almost 50 school districts, including Enid Public Schools, created the group Oklahoma Schools for Fair Funding, and sued State Superintendent Joy Hofmeister, Oklahoma Tax Commission and state Treasurer Ken Miller in an attempt to force the state to rectify a 22-year tax mistake. In 1992, the state passed a law that said state aid would not factor in above an 11 percent cap counties were taxing for certain personal property, ad valorem. However, the law was never enacted, so the payout formula, and state aid payouts, had been wrong until the issue received state and national attention in December 2014 and was rectified in January 2015. Attorneys for two sets of school districts — districts that had received too much in ad valorem tax money, and districts that had received too little including Enid — presented their cases to a Supreme Court representative in Oklahoma City Monday morning. Enid Public Schools Superintendent Darrell Floyd told the Enid News and Eagle “I think both sides had good arguments,” and added they should hear something from the Supreme Court by the fall. “Obviously, I think our side has the stronger argument because that money our taxpayers paid and was due to our students went to other districts. That happened at the state level for 22 years.” It’s a hard time to ask for money from other districts, but Floyd said something must be done to repay the shorted districts. Enid Public Schools estimates their loss to be $4.5 million.
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PC)--Two Ponca City people were injured Wednesday in a local crash. 40 year old Christie J. Smith and 18 year old Holli L. Smith were injured in a two vehicle accident at 9:50 Wednesday morning in the 4200 block of West Garriott. According to the report, they were traveling west bound on Garriott when 82 year old Georgia Brown of Enid pulled out in front of them. Smith's vehicle struck Brown's vehicle on the passenger side. Brown told police said she didn't she Smith's vehicle. Brown wasn't injured, but Christie and Holli Smith were taken to Integris Bass by Life EMS where they were admitted with non-incapacitating injuries.
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HC)--The “Going Out Of Business Sale” is underway at the local Hasting’s store in Sunset Plaza. Hastings Entertainment will close all stores by Oct. 31, but individual location closing dates will vary and no decision has been made for the Enid location. Hilco Merchant Resources LLC and Gordon Brothers Retail Partners LLC purchased Amarillo, Texas-based Hastings Entertainment during auction last week and will oversee liquidation of the stores. The plan was approved by a Federal Bankruptcy Court. Hastings was founded in 1968 and operates 126 stores throughout the United States, including 12 in Oklahoma.
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OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — The Oklahoma State Department of Health says the mosquito that carries the Zika virus has been discovered in southwestern Oklahoma, but no cases of the illness have been recorded in the region. The department said Thursday that the mosquito was detected in Altus. In previous years, the tropical mosquito had been detected in Oklahoma and Comanche counties. So far, there have been no cases of local transmission of Zika anywhere in the United States. The 1,400 infections reported in the U.S. have been linked to travel to countries with Zika outbreaks in Latin America or the Caribbean. Oklahoma has recorded 13 Zika cases involving international travel, but none of those involved a person in southwest Oklahoma.
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BC)--Northern Oklahoma College Enid will host a summer band program Aug. 1-5 in the band room. The band camp is for any student starting band, as well as seventh- or eight-grade band students, director David Toelle said. The camp offers two classes: a beginning or switcher class at 9 a.m., for students who want to start playing an instrument, or who want to learn a new instrument; and a seventh- and eighth-grade band class at 10 a.m. Summer band tuition is $30, due on the first day. For more information, contact Toelle at (580) 402-0239 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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FF)--Grass roots cinema will be the focus as actors and directors will be talking film at the third annual FLY Film Festival, which begins August 5 in Enid. The festival opens at noon and continues through Aug. 7 in downtown Enid. An introduction to the Films Like Yours festival will take place at Five80 Coffeehouse, then move to Gaslight Theatre around 2:00 p.m. Aug. 5, according to Natalie Rapp, FLY Film Festival social media director. Chris Sneed, JULA Foundation for Independent Cinema president and FLY Film Festival director, told the Enid News and Eagle there will be twice the amount of movies this year (50) compared to previous years in efforts to “amp it up.” Sneed said there will be several genres, including fantasy, horror, drama, romance and comedy. Many of the films that will be showing were made in Oklahoma, Sneed said. Some were made in other states and countries. The festival will provide the audience an opportunity to meet the directors and actors from the films. For more information, go online to FLYfilmfestival.org.
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GS)-- The City of Enid, in cooperation with JJ Keegan, is conducting a survey regarding Meadowlake Golf Course. Your insights and perspectives, whether you golf or not, will assist the city to create value for golfers on a foundation that optimizes the financial foundation and stewardship on which they are managed. Please access the LINK below and take the brief survey that should take 8 to 10 minutes to complete.
Once you complete the survey, by entering your email address, you will be entered in a contest to win one of five foursomes with carts valid through 2016. Even if you are not a golfer, you will receive a comparable prize package if selected. Winners will be notified by email by August 31, 2016.
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CT)--As temperatures climb, the amount of energy Oklahomans use also increases as air conditioner units work overtime to keep homes cool and comfortable. To help customers manage summer energy use and lower their energy costs, OG&E offers the following energy-saving tips:
1. Have your heating and or cooling system tuned and inspected by a service professional. Losses from a poorly maintained system accumulate over time – Sometimes at a rate of 1-2 percent each year. OG&E’s Home Energy Efficiency Program (HEEP) provides no-cost air conditioner tune-ups, a $175 value, as well other home energy efficiency improvement rebates.
2. Clean or change air conditioner filters monthly. The flow of air is the key to cooling, so don't make your system work harder than it has to. Also, make sure that air vents are clear of furniture or other objects that might slow down the flow of air.
3. Use a programmable thermostat to manage your home’s temperature. Set your thermostat at the highest comfortable temperature when you’re home and raise it a few degrees when you’re not home. Each degree a thermostat is raised can save up to three to four percent on the cost of operating an air conditioner. Customers on OG&E’s SmartHours® program receive a free programmable thermostat and incentives for shifting their energy outside of the company’s peak hours—nearly half-price electricity during non-peak times.
4. Avoid activities that add heat or humidity to your home, particularly during the hottest parts of the day, or limit them to times when nobody is home. For example, turn on your dishwasher as you leave the house or let dishes air dry rather than use the dishwasher's heater. Cook meals and dry clothes during the cooler times of the day.
5. Use fans to keep air moving. A ceiling fan uses about as much electricity as a light bulb -- far less than an air conditioner. Remember that fans cool people, not rooms. If your fan is running in an unoccupied room, you’re wasting energy instead of saving it.
6. Use an exhaust fan to blow hot air out of your kitchen while cooking. The savings in your cooling costs far outweigh the electricity use of the fan.
7. Plant shade trees to block the heat from the sun. As the trees grow, they can dramatically cut your cooling bills.
8. Close drapes and shades on windows during the day to keep heat from the sun out of your house. (Particularly on windows with an eastern or western exposure). In the evening, opening drapes and shades lets heat escape through the windows.
To help customers better manage their monthly energy budget, OG&E also offers billing programs, such as Average Monthly Billing, which computes a customer’s bill on a rolling 12-month average so that bills are about the same every month, and Guaranteed Flat Bill, in which customers pay the same monthly amount for electricity regardless of their energy use.
FP)-Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma offers its Summer Feeding Program in dozens of locations in central and western Oklahoma, including in Enid. While most children enjoy summer break, many children in Oklahoma go home to empty kitchens, food bank Executive Director Rodney Bivens said in a press release. “During the summer, electricity bills are high,” he said. “Parents, who rely on free or reduced-price school breakfasts and lunches, also have extra financial stress of providing meals for their children. Thankfully, children can visit a Summer Feeding site to ensure they will have enough to eat.” Enid children under the age of 18 can get summer meals on weekdays at Booker T. Washington Community Center, 800 S. 5th, noon to 12:30 p.m. through July 22; and Zoe Kids’ Cafe of Enid, 729 E. Maine, noon to 1 p.m., and 3:30-4:30 p.m. through July 29. All Summer Feeding program locations will be closed July 4. During the summer 2015, 93 sites served almost 6,500 children. For more information, go to summerfeeding.org or call (405) 972-1111.