News Buffet: Wolford Approved, One-Room School, and a Not-So-Helpful Friend

By Beacon Staff

Good morning and happy National Handwriting Day, in honor of John Hancock’s birthday.

It’s a busy news day on the Beacon. Last night, reporter Dan Testa was up late (he filed his story around 2 a.m.) to bring you news of the Kalispell City Council’s decision on the Glacier Town Center. Wolford’s development was approved unanimously, leaving the question of controversial stoplights up to the Montana Department of Transportation. In Whitefish, the city council postponed a vote on a critical areas ordinance and discussed how to deal with representation issues surrounding a two-mile planning area surrounding Whitefish referred to as the “planning doughnut.”

In other local news, photographer Lido Vizzutti and I spent a day at Pleasant Valley School, Flathead County’s last one-room schoolhouse. And, water appropriation is drastically changing in western Montana, prompting Flathead County commissioners to move to secure water rights held by the federal government.

Pipes across the state rebelled against the cold yesterday. Water from a broken pipe flooded three floors of the Shrine Auditorium in Billings, while thousands of gallons of water flooded Montana State University’s library. A group of school districts that successfully sued the state over public school funding in 2003 is considering going back to court. A former school administrator was sentenced for felony sex abuse. And paintball enthusiasts are drawing heat for damaging a wetlands area neat Fort Missoula.

And finally, is this man’s colleague friend or foe? Makes you wonder if he would’ve been better off taking his chances with the crocodile. Have a good Hump Day!