Hotels, tax breaks and morons

David Chartrand

David Chartrand

In its quest for a first-class conference hotel, Olathe has awarded humongo tax breaks for a new Embassy Suites with only 25,000 square meet of meeting space. RESULT: Olathe must keep looking for a first-class conference hotel.
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Awaiting the new film about J.D. Salinger. Favorite “Catcher in the Rye” quote:  “All morons hate it when you call them a moron.”
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Second favorite “Catcher” quote:  “I don’t exactly know what I mean by that, but I mean it.”
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County Feed the Need a success

Johnson County government’s 2013 Feed the Need campaign helped fill the shelves at 10 Johnson County food pantries with more than 127 tons of food.

Donations will benefit food pantries serving eligible Johnson County citizens, which provided food or vouchers to 2,242 households with 12,681 individuals in 2013.

In the first five months of this year, the pantries provided food assistance to 811 households, serving 2,957 individuals


Ex-Garmin employee accused of stealing $1 million worth of devices

A former employee for the Garmin company in Olathe, Kan., has been indicted on federal charges of stealing more than $1 million worth of GPS devices from the company, U.S. Attorney Barry Grissom said this week.

Terrence M. Heathington, 31, currently of Atlanta, Ga., is charged with 40 counts of mail fraud. The indictment alleges that the crimes were committed between March and September 2008 while Heathington worked as a warehouse material handler for Garmin International, Inc., in Olathe.

He caused boxes of GPS devices to be shipped via commercial carrier to his residence and the residences of co-conspirators.

He and other conspirators sold the GPS devices on eBay and through other means. He stole approximately 165 cases of Garmin GPS devices with a wholesale value of more than $1 million.

If convicted, he faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in federal prison and a fine up to $250,000 on each count. The U.S. Secret Service investigated. Assistant U.S. Attorney Chris Oakley is prosecuting


Heat advisory for Johnson County

A heat advisory has been issued for Johnson County. The advisory began at 3 p.m. today and will expire at 7 p.m. Saturday night. Dangerous temperatures will be entering the Kansas City metro area this weekend. The National Weather Service is predicting a high temperature of 99 degrees on Friday and 99 degrees on Saturday. Temperatures will dip on Sunday. On Labor Day, temperatures are expected to drop back into the 80’s.


Other views…

MLK’s dream burning bright

But promise of equal opportunity ‘great unfinished business’

Freelance writer/editor

Standing in the shadow of the great emancipator, President Barack Obama on Wednesday stood exactly where slain civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. did 50 years earlier to “awaken the slumbering conscience of America.”

On the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, Obama borrowed heavily from King’s 1963 “I have a dream” speech to chronicle the rapid societal changes the landmark oratory set in motion for America’s excluded minorities.

It wasn’t just a black thing. It was a Latino thing. An Asian thing. A women thing.  A gay thing. A Catholic thing. A Jewish thing.

And it was a people with disabilities thing, the President of the United States told tens of thousands of Americans from all walks of life on a rainy day in Washington, D.C. Continue reading

Olathe PD respond and subject shoots self

A person stopped by Olathe police Aug. 28 about 10 p.m. in the 16400 block of West 119th Street on suspicion of an aggravated assault received life-threatening injuries from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Police said they arrived at the scene and found the potential suspect vehicle in a parking lot of the surrounding businesses. After stopping the vehicle a single gunshot was heard from the suspect vehicle.

The subject remained conscious and moving but was non-compliant with officers. The Olathe Tactical Support Unit responded to the scene and was able to secure the weapon inside the vehicle. The subject was transported to an area hospital and the person’s condition is unknown.

This case remains under investigation by the Olathe Police Department. Anyone with information regarding this investigation is asked to call the Olathe Police Department at 913-971-6950 or the TIPS Hotline at 816-474-8477.


Obama rule pushes jobs for people with disabilities

Harkin: “Historic” effort moves country toward equal opportunity

Freelance writer/editor

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Vice President Joe Biden recently announced that the Obama aministration will implement a new rule to promote employment for individuals with disabilities.

The rule, aimed at federal contractors and subcontractors, is designed to increase the hiring, retention and promotion of qualified individuals with disabilities.

The rule enforces Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and for the first time sets a goal that at least 7 percent of the federal contractor workforce, at all levels, should be made up of qualified individuals with disabilities. Continue reading

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