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Okmulgee in the News

by Tina Pierce LMFT

A new year is like the new chapter of a book. It is the opportunity to take your life in a new direction. Many people set out to do this by setting goals or making resolutions. Unfortunately, many people are not successful in completing these goals. One study suggests about 47% of people who make a new year’s resolution never complete it. So to the well-intended goal makers that struggle with the follow through, this one is for you. How to make a goal you can complete.

First, simplify! You are more likely to complete one goal than twenty. Choose one specific goal to work on at a time. Second, make your goal measurable and attainable. Saying I want to start working out one day a week or my goal is to loose five pounds is easier to conquer than I want to lose weight. Plus when you realize that you are making progress toward completing your goal you are more likely to keep going. Finally, write your goal down and share it with someone. Writing your goal down makes you more likely to succeed in completing your goal. Writing your goal down somewhere you see it regularly makes you even more likely to succeed. And sharing that goal with a friend that will keep you accountable to following through on your goal will make you even more likely to complete that goal. To all of the goal makers reading this I applaud your resolve and encourage you to never give up. Even if you feel like you are currently failing at your goal. I encourage you to take a look at your goal and simplify, evaluate the attainability and measurability, write it, and share it. Then celebrate the success even if it is only a partial success that is progress. Good luck, from the therapeutic cheerleader!

Tina Pierce LMFT

You Place, LLC


The You Place offers Family, Marital, Pre-Marital, and Individual Counseling Services for people struggling with a variety of mental health problems including anxiety, depression, ADHD, PTSD, OCD, and more. The You Place also offers consultation and training services and LPC supervision. For more information call today. 918-777-6045

Okmulgee, Okla. -- All Ham Operators are Welcome and Invited to a Ham Radio Meet and Greet at the Okmulgee County Emergency Operations Center (EOC).

We have some new amateur radio operators in Okmulgee County and we would like to have everyone (both seasoned & new hams) come by for morning of coffee and conversation.

And before you know it storm season will be here in Oklahoma. So, we thought it would also be great opportunity for members of the Okmulgee County SkyWarn Association WX5OKM also join in the conversations.

Following a short presentation there will be a tour of the communications room in the EOC -- which of course is equipped with amateur radio gear.

Who: Okmulgee County Amateur Radio Operators
What: Ham Radio Meet and Greet
When: Saturday 11 Feb 2017 at 9:00 AM
Where: Okmulgee County EOC, 110 N. Alabama Ave, Okmulgee.
Talk in: we will monitor 147.225 pl88.5 repeater

So please, come join us... we look forward to seeing everyone there.

What does Okmulgee County Emergency Management do? OCEM protects communities by coordinating resources and integrating activities necessary to build, sustain and improve the capability to mitigate against, prepare for, respond to and recover from natural disasters, act of terrorism or other man-made disasters.

Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/okmcoem

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Robert Frost, Chief Investigator for the DA, and Mike Stacy, Investigator, were the guests of Rotarian of the Day Felecia Wittman. A couple of years ago, Robert approached the local police chief, the Okmulgee County Sheriff, the Henryetta police chief, as well as law enforcement in McIntosh County, to offer his 20-person team in exchange for manpower between agencies. Almost all agencies agreed and Robert gave case by case examples over the last 2 years of how this cooperation has worked well to solve many violent crimes within short time periods. He was pleased to announce the Creek Nation tribal police had recently joined the coordinated team effort.

Mike spoke to the group about the parole program, listing the many duties their office covers for the current nearly 900 parolees in our DA’s area. One of the things their office does is try to help parolees find employment. Potential employers can set the parameters for the type of crime the parolee was convicted of that they are willing to employ. It was brought to his attention that businesses hiring parolees are eligible for a tax credit. Please contact the DA’s office if your business has employment opportunities.


As required by Section 311, Title 25 of the Oklahoma Statutes, notice is hereby given that the Board of County Commissioners of Okmulgee County will hold a regular meeting on January 30, 2017 at 9:00 a.m. The meeting will be held in the County Commissioners Conference Room in the County Courthouse, located at 314 W. 7th, Okmulgee.

NOTE: The Board may discuss, vote to approve, vote to disapprove, vote to table or decide not to discuss any item on the agenda.


1. Call to Order, Invocation and Pledge of Allegiance

2. Possible approval of minutes from regular meeting

3. Input by the Public on any non-agenda items

4. Order of Business:

A. Discussion and possible approval of Officers’ Reports

B. Discussion and possible approval of Blanket Purchase Orders

C. Discussion and possible approval of Employee Acknowledgment Forms

D. Discussion and possible approval of submitted Utility Permits

E. Discussion and possible approval of Private Property Agreements

F. Open and possible award of Bid #10 for lease purchase of 2006 or newer 10-wheeled
dump truck

G. Open Request for Qualifications for CDBG Administrator and possible award of contract

H. Discussion and possible approval of Resolution to apply for CDBG

I. Discussion and possible approval to Adopt Written Citizen Participation Plan

J. Discussion and possible approval of Fair Housing Documentation

K. Possible approval of Authorization for Chairman to sign all CDBG Grant Documents

L. Discussion and possible approval of Agreement with Arbuckle Materials

M. Discussion and possible approval of Resolutions to dispose of equipment

N. Discussion and possible approval of Memorandum of Understanding with OSU

5. Report from Emergency Management Director

6. New Business

7. Discussion and possible approval of claims and/or signing of documents

8. Vote to go into Executive Session to discuss a confidential communication matter with the
Board of County Commissioners’ Attorney

Attorney communications:

25 O.S. §307(B) (4) Executive Sessions: Confidential communications between a public body and its attorney concerning a pending investigation, claim or action if the public body with the advice of its attorney, determines that disclosure will seriously impair the ability of the public body to process the claim or conduct a pending investigation, litigation, or proceeding in the public interest.

9. Vote to return from Executive Session

10. Discussion and possible vote on matters discussed in Executive Session

11. Adjourn


East Central Oklahoma Family Health Center, Inc. (ECOFHC) was proud to welcome everyone to a groundbreaking ceremony Friday at the Shurden-Leist Industrial Park. Donna Dyer, CEO of the family health center said the groundbreaking marks an important milestone in meeting and expanding the medical, dental, behavioral health and 340B prescription coverage to the citizens of Okmulgee County and the surrounding areas. The building will be 7600 square feet that includes 12 exam rooms and a precedure room, 3 dental units with digital X-ray and will be a full service facility.

"We provide health, dental, behavioral health and prescription drug services. Our services help people with Medicare, Medicaid and even people who do not have insurance on a sliding scale based on income. We are here to try to meet the needs of our community," said Dyer.

ECOFHC contracted with Henryetta Drug, Okemah Pharmacy and Norman Drug in we Wewoka to provide 340B prescription drug coverage for the patients of ECOHFC. At the inception of the idea to expand coverage to Henryetta in 2011, the ECOHFC Board of Directors had the foresight to see what a difference affordable healthcare could be to the community. When the research began for expansion in Okmulgee County, Henryetta welcomed ECOHFC with open arms and open hearts. The City of Henryetta not only recognize the benefit of affordable healthcare, they also recognized the economic impact for the community. The ECOHFC's New Access Point and Henryetta was funded in June 2012 with one building for medical services in a separate building for dental services. It was the intent of ECOHFC to combine all services in one location when funding became available.

In 2015, the Health infrastructure Investment Program grant application process was released. ECOHFC applied for the highly competitive grant and received the $1 million dollar reward in May 2016 and within the next month, the construction documents will be complete and construction will begin. Along with the Environmental Protection Agency, Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality, and the City of Henryetta are working together to ensure the success of this project. The total approximate cost for this project is 1.4 million.

Henryetta Mayor Jennifer Clason was on hand with other officials from the Henryetta Economic Development Authority who pitched the first shovels in the ground. The construction should be finished within 18-months.

Photos by Allen Gardner - ONN


Photo by Allen Gardner - ONN

The people of Henryetta shared in a celebration of remembering our Veteran’s on Saturday when they were visited by the Walking Veteran Thomas Hudson.  Hudson, got  his name "The Walking Veteran" by completing his mission last year to walk across America for the purpose of bringing awareness to the American people, to learn from Veterans and to honor and deliver the message of hurting Veterans to Congress. Hudson started his walk in Las Vegas Nevada on May 2, 2016 and concluded his journey in the Nations capital of Washington DC in November 2016.004

Thomas spent some time in Henryetta visiting schools and talking with Veterans over the past few weeks and brought with him the wagon he pulled on his journey known as the Walking Veteran Wagon. The wagon was  inducted into the Henryetta Historical Society Territorial Museum in Henryetta. During Hudsons walk across America, many people donated special items for Thomas to carry in honor of love ones. All of these items and gifts will also be donated and now have a home as well at the museum for historic preservation.

A parade was held on Saturday that preceded down Broadway Street to 10th to the Henryetta Civic center. Henryetta youth Daniel Cox pulled the wagon as he had been recognized previously by the Walking Veteran for Daniel’s kindness of bringing him water on a hot July day when Hudson traveled through Henryetta. Everyone gathered at the Civic center for a meal and ceremony that included special guest speakers, music and Thomas reviewed his walk across America.  Daniel Cox who was coined the youngest walking Veteran also led the parade. Cox for his kindness on a hot July day when Hudson came to town. Cox was honored with a proclamation in both Henryetta and Arkansas each designating a “Daniel Cox Day.”

Hudson was surprised by a special guest “Cookie” his private duty nurse from Houston, who traveled to Oklahoma for a reunion visit.


See more photos on FacebookPhotos by Allen Garnder - ONN

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Pictured, left to right: President Lion R.C. Morrow, Christopher Coburn, Lion Dr. Tom Alexander, and Tim Hicks.

The Lions Club meeting Tuesday was a two-fold program featuring the Muscogee (Creek) Nation Department of Health with Christopher Coburn, Marketing Manager, and Tim Hicks, Physical Rehabilitation Center Administrator. Chris Coburn is from Muskogee and has previously worked for the Creek Nation and East Central Electric Co-op, bringing 25 years' experience with him to his present position with the hospital which, of course, is the former Okmulgee Memorial Hospital. Tim Hicks is the Administrator of the former George Nigh Rehabilitation Center. An added bit of information is that Shawn Terry is the new Hospital Administrator and has only been on the job less than two weeks, hired from Hillcrest Hospital in Tulsa. Chris and Tim both are excited to be in their respective positions and are pleased with the good leadership, good stability, and positive direction that the Creek Nation seems to be headed.

Almost everyone in the community can use these facilities, they are not just limited to Creek Citizens. Both facilities are Medicare/Medicaid certified and, basically, offer the same services as previously offered, but with a few exceptions. The hospital has closed the home health unit and the proposed expansion of the ER Services is on "hold". All other services are available, including the Hope Unit, Inpatient Senior Behavioral Health Program. In addition, the Creek Nation operates seven clinics in various locations and is continuing work toward completion of the Okemah Hospital project.

The Rehabilitation Center continues to provide speech therapy, occupational therapy, physical therapy, and cardiac programs, but the amount of in-patient beds is limited. Chris stated that he used the facility for shoulder therapy when he worked for East Central Electric, and his daughter utilized the speech therapy unit. Conditions that may benefit from intensive rehabilitation are: stroke, spinal cord injury, congenital deformity, amputation, prosthetic training, major multiple trauma, traumatic brain injury, fractures, back and neck injuries, multiple sclerosis, arthritis, Parkinson's Disease, hand therapy, and other acute and chronic conditions. The Physical Rehabilitation Center features the region's only Aquatic Physical Therapy program and Okmulgee County's only Outpatient Cardiac Rehab program. Individuals are referred to the Rehab Center from hospitals, private physicians, insurance companies, workers' compensation, health care agencies, as well as individuals and family members. Our Lions Club is also taking referrals for a few more good men and women. "WE SERVE".

Photo and information provided by Dean Craig, with excerpts from the Creek Nation pamphlets.

Ron Goedecke

Ron Goedecke (center) was the guest of Rotarian of the Day Page Hayden and President Felecia Wittman. Ron, who retired from the local USDA NRCS office about a year ago, needed to fence some acreage he bought. He was presented with the problem of how to get this done when there is a ban burn in effect. He designed a simple solution and developed a prototype of the “Bullet Fence” that doesn’t require any welding. He walked the group through his journey as an inventor, from product development, the patent application, manufacturing and marketing. Currently his product is in about 15 stores in Oklahoma and surrounding states, but he is still working the trade shows and admits he is not ready for “Shark Tank” yet. To see a video demonstration of the Bullet Fence, visit his website Bulletfence.com.

Friday February 3, 2017, OCRSEA will host a LEGISLATIVE FORUM! District Legislators Steve Kouplen District 24 and newly elected Scott Fetgatter District 16 along with Senator Roger Thompson will be in attendance!

The Legislative Forum will be held on the campus of OSUIT, STUDENT UNIONS HARLEN ROOM AT 12 o'clock ( noon )!

THE OCRSEA WOULD LIKE TO INVITE ALL RETIRED SCHOOL EMPLOYEES IN OKMULGEE COUNTY TO ATTEND!! (You do not have to be a member). We would also like to extend an invitation to the PUBLIC who would be interested in hearing from our legislators and senator in Okmulgee County!!

If you have questions email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call (918)758-8480

By Betty Anderson

Kristin Cunningham, Okmulgee Library Director, reported to the City Council that the Open House for the Library was very nice. She said, “Many people attended and enjoyed the food and the entertainment. The Choir from the Okmulgee High School sang Christmas Carols. We are very thankful for all of the volunteers who came to help.”

Her report indicated that for December 2016 they had $1,291.04 in fines/copies/lost books/ILL’s collected. They had 43 new borrowers, 375 reference questions, 276 items added and 1155 computer patron use. The door count for December was 7310 and the meeting rooms had 76 uses. They also delivered books to Homebound citizens and Nursing Home patients.

She also reminded everyone that the Summer Reading program is just around the corner and that Jeana has already been gathering ideas for this year.

Cunningham will be working on the Viersen grant soon so everything should be set for another great summer.

Also reported was, “Kristin and Jeana will be getting back to weeding areas of the library which is an ongoing process that needs to be done to remove books that are out dated and no longer used. This allows for the books to be shifted on the shelf to make room for new books.”

2017 01 17 Okmulgee Library

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