Howell's It Going, Episode 1, January 10, 204

Hello and welcome to Howell’s It Going. Each week, we’ll be sharing everything you need to know about what’s happening in your community. I’m Amanda Mendez, and this is your news.
The city of West Plains has installed a parklet downtown on Washington Avenue. It’s just outside of Ozark Pizza Company. The owners are currently working on setting it up with more amenities like benches, flower pots, a heating system, and more. Public reaction to the parklet is mixed. Most people think that it's a nice idea and they’re glad the city is trying to add more activities downtown. But parking is a real concern. Citizens are also unsure whether it’s the right time of year for the project. 
A quick warning that the next story involves graphic content. If you want to skip it, jump ahead twenty seconds. In late December, Benjamin Boucher was named a suspect of statutory rape and enticement of a child. The case involves both a blood relative and an additional female minor. Boucher denied the allegations in a police interview and has posted bond at $50,000. He is not currently in police custody and will have an arraignment hearing on Feb. 2.
Watch out if you’re planning on driving next week–Route DD in Howell County will be closed, so you may need to divert your work commute. Maintenance will take place Monday through Thursday from 7am to 4pm, just for next week.
The Knights of Columbus free throw contest on Saturday at Munford Gym in Willow. There is no cost to enter and the competition is for kids ages 9-14. The event starts at 10am. If you’re free, give it a shot!
Make sure you have your health insurance covered–the general enrollment period for Medicare Part B insurance has started. It’ll run until March 31. Part B covers health insurance for seniors aged 65 or older. 
We have elections coming up in April, and three school districts in our coverage area have contested elections. The Willow Springs school board has six people running for two positions. Mac Gum and Scott Foster’s two-year seats are up for election, and they’re challenged by Roger Shanks. There is also a one-year term up for election–incumbent Debbie Brian is challenged by Larry Huett and Megan Jones. In West Plains, there are two school board seats up for election, with three people running–Jimmy E. Thompson, Brian Mitchell, and Sheila Harper. In Mountain View, there are three people running for two school board seats. Incumbent School Board President Jennifer Foster is running again, alongside Gaylon Noble and Michael Smith. Mountain View also has a contested election in city government–in the East Ward, Vicki Carr and David Bauer are running, and in the West Ward, Calvin Perry and Lucinda Burton are running. All are newcomers.
I’m Amanda, and this has been Howell’s It Going.
Written by Jacob Colangelo, Narrated by Amanda Mendez

Howell County News

110 W. Main St.,
Willow Springs, MO 65793

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