Matt and Jana joined us from Miami County Roads & Bridges to provide information on the upcoming vote to renew the 1/4 cent sales tax that has been in place since 1999 and Beverly Smith shared part of her daughter's journey as a missionary in South Africa. 
There have been 27 projects at work in the 15 years since the 1/4 since sales tax was approved in Miami County. With the continuing sales tax, there are 4 proposed bridge projects that will provide $500K to each of the five cities in the county. Louisburg is slated to improve the intersection at K-68 Highway and Metcalf. Some highlights from the informational presentation include:
  • 1/4 cent represents 25 cents of every $100 spent and reduces the amount of property taxes needed for road and bridge work
  • Sales tax funding since 1999 has been matched with an additional $5.4M in Federal and State grant dollars
  • The 5-year 5-bridge project resulted in the replacement of 7 bridges and and additional grant funding
  • We now have 2 sites on the National Historical Registry
  • Bridge Sufficiency Ratings are calculations of safety based on geometry, bridge condition, car count and the load it bears
  • Currently the bridge at Spring Valley Road and 271st street has a 22.6% rating - the goal is 100%
  • It is important to note that a sales tax is NOT BEING ADDED, it is continuing through 2020 to complete additional projects
Beverly Smith's daughter is married with three children. In 2013 she moved to South Africa with her family to do missionary work and they have settled in Alexandria, about 10 miles from the southern coast. They are enjoying 70-80 degree temperatures with 0% humidity in the summer, which results in no bugs and a clean, pollution-free environment. Our seasons are not shared, and their June, July and August winter months only get down into the 50s - there are no heaters and all plumbing is exterior as there is no danger of freezing pipes.
There are more than 800 languages spoken in Africa over 11M square miles of land. English and Africans are the two primary languages spoken, yet visiting is like going back in time, according to Beverly. The socio-economic environment is strictly segregated and water is far from abundant. JoJo tanks are used for water collection. Washing clothes is a one-bucket process that starts with whites and ends with darks so that as the water gets dingier, it is not as noticeable on darker clothes.
The family opened a Bed & Breakfast and they employ a maid to help with the daily tasks. Unfortunately, there are not a lot of people who want to work. The culture is very laid back, quiet and easy-going. Television and electronics are not a priority - nor is education. Alcoholism is high, as is the number of orphaned children.
Beverly is preparing for a visit. Her daughter has provided her with lists of things they need in her community, so Beverly is taking a lot with her - 65 simple dresses, baby clothes, 85 toothbrushes and undies. We invited her to visit the Rotary Club again when she returns to give us an idea of ways we could help. 
Other Hot Topics:
  • animal behavior
  • cuff links
  • grandmas
  • country living
  • brotherly love
  • birth order
  • the Royals
  • getting lost in Paola
  • Brock Elliott is our newest member
  • Pay It Forward starts at 12:30 on Saturday, October 25th on South Doyle
  • Halloween on Broadway starts at 5pm on Saturday, October 25th
  • ‚Äčas our Vocational Chair, McRaymond is working on Focus on the Future
  • Craig may host our Holiday Open House in January
  • we donated 3 hot water containers for coffee/hot cocoa to the Booster Club for use in the Wildcat Concession Stand
  • Sandy almost has photographic evidence of Garrett Griffin's TD
  • it will cost us $1K, combined with the money we will receive from the Prudential grant to finally complete the Little Round House
  • we will deliver cookies to LHRC & Vintage Park at 3pm on Sunday, October 26
And the BIG QUESTION everyone wants the answer to...where are all of our Rotarians???
We miss you!