The Press-Dispatch

November 18, 2020

The Press-Dispatch

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SPECIAL PAGE D-4 Monica's Meals in Minutes SPECIAL PAGE D-4 THANKSGIVING Six dishes that are sure to delight SHOP LOCAL LOCAL LOCAL LOCAL LOCAL LOCAL LOCAL LOCAL LOCAL Triple Feature Starts on A-4 NEWS TIPS Phone: ���������������������812-354-8500 Email ����� editor@pressdispatch�net INSIDE Local ����������������� A1-8 Shopping������������ A4-6 Sports ��������������������B1 History �������������������B3 Opinion �������������B4-5 Obituaries ���������������B6 Church �������������� C1-3 Classifieds ���������� C4-5 East Gibson ������ C6-7 School �����������������D1-2 Home Life ����������� D3-6 USPS 604-34012 WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 18, 2020 PIKE PUBLISHING VOLUME 150, NUMBER 47 $1.00 28 PAGES FOUR SECTIONS FOUR INSERTS PETERSBURG, IN 47567-0068 Jayla Harris (Sharpay Evans), Ella Hartke (Taylor McKessie), Xavery Weisman (Gabriella Mont- ez) display teen angst while confronting each other in Pike Central's Middle School musical "High School Musical, Jr." It will be performed Thursday through Sunday at Pike Central. Pike Central's Middle School will perform High School Musical Jr. this week, starting Thursday night. Due to COVID restrictions, the seating capacity of the Vance Hays Audito- rium is limited to 25 percent. Con- sequently the Friday, Saturday and Sunday afternoon shows are sold out. Tickets are still available for the 6 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 19 and 6 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 22 shows. Masks are required. Tickets can be pur- chased from a cast member or by calling Pike Central Middle School at 812-354-8478. This up-beat throwback to the ins and outs of high school drama is a nostalgic romp for young and old alike. The audition notice is posted for East High's spring musical and superstar athlete Troy and science whiz Gabriella secretly want to try out. Will their dreams be thwarted as they navigate the cliques of East High? Adapted for young perform- ers, this musical includes favorite High School Musical songs such as "Get'cha Head in the Game," "Stick to the Status Quo," and "We're All in This Together." With its inspiring message of friendship, self-discov- ery and teamwork, you'll be singing and cheering along with High School Musical Jr. all the way to opening night. CAST Troy Bolton–Conner Loveless Jack Scott–Jacob Harker Chad Danforth–Adon LeMond Ryan Evans–Emily McGillem PCMS musical set for Thursday through Sunday Eight-year-old injured in three-wheeler crash By Andy Heuring An eight-year-old Petersburg girl suffered a leg injury early Sun- day evening when she fell off a three-wheeler. Brooklyn Walburn was taken by ambulance to Deaconess Midtown in Evansville with a suspected bro- ken leg, according to Indiana Con- servation Offi cer Kendrick Furh- man, who is investigating the acci- dent. Fuhrman said Walburn was on the back of a three-wheeler being driven by her sister Jasmine Gonter- man, 17, when they hit a washed out area on a rural road. Offi cer Furh- man said the three-wheeler didn't overturn but Walburn was thrown from the vehicle. He said CR 25 N. in that area was a partially rock and dirt road. It was reported to Pike County Central Dispatch at 4:38 p.m. Sunday. See PLANT BIDS on page 2 See MUSICAL on page 2 See COVID on page 2 See SCHOOL on page 7 By Andy Heuring Local health professionals and parents ques- tioned whether the Pike County School Cor- poration's safety measures are more harm- ful than COVID itself. Their questions came during Tuesday evening's monthly school board meeting. Andy Houchin, who helped open the Da- viess Community Hospital's COVID-19 test- ing facility, and his sister, Jessica Collins, who is a nurse practitioner involved in testing kids for COVID in Dubois County, both questioned the school's current quarantine policy. "I'm a parent looking for help on a way to get kids back into the classroom. I'm having to make the hard decision to move one of my kiddos to a new school, because I'm watching her fail or at least not make gains academical- ly, at least based on what I see with the hybrid schedule," said Houchin. "I come to you as a health provider with ex- perience treating coronavirus. I was tasked with opening the coronavirus screening facil- ity at Daviess Community Hospital. The les- sons from the fi eld are, thankfully, it wasn't as serious as we expected. I don't want to un- derscore the seriousness of it. Clearly, there is some serious validity to it for older folks with multiple morbidities. But we shut our business down like the rest of the world and about two months into it, it became not fi nan- cially feasible." He added, "As we brought our business back up, we found it didn't have a signifi cant impact on the overall disease process locally. We did not get a signifi cant increase in cas- es. So there is a fair amount of data that goes a long with that. My argument tonight is that long-term effects on education and impacts on safety, social skills and kids may be more dangerous than the virus itself." He said some data he had pulled included a story from the Mayo Clinic that shows kids typically are not affected nearly as much as adults and may not show any symptoms at all. He said data from the Centers for Disease Control show quarantining aggressively fails to identify the kids who are actually sick or minimally sick. Another CDC article shows while kids com- prise 22 percent of the data, they are only 7.23 percent of the total cases. He said that indi- cates kids aren't nearly as impacted by COVID and there is no signifi cant death rate for kids under the age of 15 and really for those under the age of 55. "So here is my question, I feel like the cur- rent policies are not in line with our neighbor- ing schools and the quarantining policies we are using are actually supporting the case to keep up hybrid. Especially closing us down, because we are quarantining teachers and stu- Parents make case for getting kids back in school COVID cases spike in Pike County By Andy Heuring The Petersburg City County awarded the phase one wastewater plant bids to the low bidder on Mon- day night. They voted 5 -0 to award the bid to Graves Plumbing, of Switz City, for $2.772 million. Construction on the fi rst phase of the new wastewa- ter plant is expected to start before the end of the year. Graves was one of fi ve bidders. Clint W. Roos, of Midwestern Engi- neers, Inc., reviewed the bids and recommended the low bid. Oth- er bidders were Kieffer Bros. Con- struction Co. Inc., of Mt. Carmel, Ill., at $2.889 million; Debra-Kiem- pel, Inc., of Evansville, at $ 3.364 mil- lion; Deig Bros., of Evansville, at $ 3.597 million; and Blankenberger Bros., of Cynthiana, at $ 3.836 mil- lion. Phase one work includes an equal- ization lagoon and the headworks. "I would like to see some dirt moved before the end of the year," said Pe- tersburg Mayor R.C. Klipsch. But he added it is weather dependent. He said this is the most urgent part of the project because it helps address the infi ltration problem. Infi ltration is when storm water seeps into the sewer system and overloads the ca- pacity of the plant. The equalization lagoon acts as a buffer for the plant, holding large amounts of fl ow until the plant can catch up and process it. The Phase II portion of the waste- water treatment plant is the rehab of the actual plant. Klipsch said most of the design work on that is com- plete and it will probably not go to bid until early 2021. Klipsch said, last week he met with Rural Development and the Economic Development Adminis- tration and learned the city still has to get a couple of easements before they can get their water plant proj- ect to bid. Along with the wastewa- ter plant project, Petersburg is also doing a major water plant and distri- bution improvement project. "It is going to be a challenge to have them done by 2021. Hope to have it done by end of 2022. A lot of these projects are going to be going on at the same time," said Klipsch. In other business, City Services Manager Ross Elmore said Calcar Paving, Inc. is expected to start an- other round of milling and paving on Friday. Elmore said they will be paving: Seventh St., from Walnut to Goodlet; Eighth St., from Main to Goodlet; Goodlet, from Seventh to Ninth St.; and Maple St., from Ninth to 12th St. City awards wastewater plant bid Iron Bridge to replace Charger Bridge Tuesday afternoon, the old Iron Bridge over the Patoka River at Survant was lifted off its foundation and placed in the riv- er access parking lot to be dismantled and refurbished. Workers climbed onto the arched iron framework and secured eight straps hooked to a Graber crane for the lift, which took most of the day. Once renovated, the Iron Bridge will take the place of the Charger Bridge and become a pedestrian bridge over Prides Creek at Cherry Street. The Indiana Department of Trans- portation (INDOT) only certifi ed the old Iron Bridge for pedestrian use. James Capozella photo By Andy Heuring COVID numbers in Pike County and Indi- ana continue to climb as total cases hit 464 on Tuesday in Pike County. Pike County Health Nurse Amy Gladish said Pike County teetered on the edge of moving into a level three or red rating, which is the highest and most restric- tive level, according to the Indiana Depart- ment of Health's metrics. Last Wednesday, Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb issued a new executive order which ties a county to its metric level. There are four different color levels: blue, which is less than 10 new cases per 100,000 residents; yel- low, which is between 10 and 99 new cases per 100,000 ; orange, which is 100 to 199 per 100,000 ; and red, which is 200 or more per 100,000 residents. Gladish said Pike County's positivity rate is at 12.5 percent right now, as there were 13 new cases over the weekend and another 10 were added on Tuesday to the county's total. How- ever, she said three cases that had been credit- ed to Pike County were removed because they were on Pike County's list by mistake. Conse- quently, it was just enough to keep Pike Coun- ty in the orange. She said it is important to remain below the red level because it is more restrictive. At the orange level, gatherings of up to 50 people can continue to happen. She said church services and weddings at a church are exempt from that. However, a wedding reception is not ex- empt. Any gathering of more than 50 people in Pike County requires a plan for social dis- tancing and COVID prevention measures to be submitted to the Pike County Health Dept.

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