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USD 355 hears new Recreation Commission report
ell kl cross country boys
The Ellinwood Eagles Boys Cross-Country team are: Avery Pike, Derek Ward, Kyle Blakeslee, Pedro Montoya and Kyle Oglesbee. They are state champs for the second year in a row. - photo by KAREN LA PIERRE

ELLINWOOD — The USD 355 School Board heard a recreation report from recreation steering committee members John Isern and Mel Waite about the potential development of an official Ellinwood Recreation Commission.  The school board voted to issue a statement of support for the committee to move forward in an effort to create an independent Recreation Commission with its own board.
The process began in February, when community members began meeting and talking about the process of having a full-time Recreation Commission director with activities not only for youth, but for adults as well.
They have conducted an official survey, as well as spoken to members of the Heritage Club and bingo players. A committee of 10-12 people met monthly. The researched how other communities ran their Recreation Commission.
Isern reported that in the survey, about 60 percent of residents would support a mill levy and about 85 percent supported user’s fees. They did receive a small amount of feedback saying that taxes are too high.
“Most comments were positive,” on the survey, said Isern.
“We’ve done the groundwork and want to move forward,” said Waite. They are suggesting a joint committee with two members of the school board, two members of the city council, and one more at-large person that would become the governing body.
“We will need to engage the school board to place the resolution on the ballot,” said Waite. They are targeting the April election, and the school board has to take formal action.
Waite said that even after all the prepatory work that has been done, the process has just begun.
In other business, Superintendent Ben Jacobs reminded the board that Richard Doll, Steve Billinger and Janice Birzer are up for reelection.
The board is hiring Linda McKown for strategic planning for the district. They will have several sessions.
Macksville softball
Macksville USD 351 and USD 355 mutually agree to dissolve the softball cooperative agreement the districts have shared.  The agreement put the Ellinwood team into 3A competition with the Macksville students, but USD 351 no longer has students interested in playing.
Without the extra students, the team will drop to 2A.
The Eagle Excellence Award winners were the boys and girls cross-country teams.