Charter Schools Widely Abuse Public Funding Study Finds

TUCSON (AP) — A report by an Arizona think tank found that most charter schools in the state abused public funding by engaging in business transactions that involved their owners, board members or their families.

The Grand Canyon Institute report indicated that 77 percent of all Arizona charter schools engaged in some form of related-party transactions, and that the state’s regulatory system failed to ensure that tax dollars given to the schools are primarily used for the education of students, The Arizona Daily Star reported on Monday.

The report is based on a three-year forensic audit of the charter schools’ finances, and it focused primarily on related-party transactions. The report defined these transactions as the schools spending tax dollars on non-competitive bids with companies that are owned by the charter operators, board members or their immediate relatives.

While the practices are illegal for public schools, they are legal for charter schools because they are not subject to competitive-bid laws.

If a charter holder is using tax dollars to do business with a family member, Arizona Charter School Association President Eileen Sigmund said it doesn’t necessarily mean they’re scamming taxpayers. She said offenders will be caught by the state charter school board.

One of the reasons charters are outperforming district schools is because they don’t have the bureaucratic waste due to government red tape around procurement practices, Sigmund added.

Continue reading article

Bullhead City Voices Disapproval of Roundabouts

BULLHEAD CITY — The Bullhead City Council — and most speakers at its meeting Tuesday night — wanted to send a message to state transportation officials considering roundabouts at several locations along Highway 95: Find another solution.

The council voted 7-0 to adopt a resolution voicing opposition to the circles, which are regarded as an alternative to traffic lights.

The vote came after City Manager Toby Cotter described several possible drawbacks to roundabouts and other changes being considered as part of a safety study being done by the Arizona Department of Transportation.

The resolution said that the council agrees that some safety improvements are needed, but that “planning for roundabouts and medians has progressed without appropriate input from” local leaders and residents.

Besides roundabouts, the study also covers center medians on Highway 95, which would prevent traffic from crossing the roadway. Cotter said some medians being considered are up to a mile long.

“This would be the death knell for retail businesses on that strip,” said Ray Shanahan. “If we can’t turn left and our customers can’t exit our businesses left, we would have to shut our businesses down.”

Continue reading article

Hurricane Maria Smashes Homes, Flooding in Peurto Rico

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — The strongest hurricane to hit Puerto Rico in more than 80 years destroyed hundreds of homes, knocked out power across the entire island and turned some streets into raging rivers Wednesday in an onslaught that could plunge the U.S. territory deeper into financial crisis.

Leaving at least nine people dead in its wake across the Caribbean, Hurricane Maria blew ashore in the morning near the southeast coastal town of Yabucoa as a Category 4 storm with winds of 155 mph (250 kph).

It punished the island of 3.4 million people with life-threatening winds for several hours, the second time in two weeks that Puerto Rico has felt the wrath of a hurricane.

“Once we’re able to go outside, we’re going to find our island destroyed,” warned Abner Gomez, Puerto Rico’s emergency management director. “The information we have received is not encouraging. It’s a system that has destroyed everything in its path.”

As people waited in shelters or took cover inside stairwells, bathrooms and closets, Maria brought down cell towers and power lines, snapped trees, tore off roofs and unloaded at least 20 inches (50 centimeters) of rain.

Widespread flooding was reported, with dozens of cars half-submerged in some neighborhoods and many streets turned into rivers. People calling local radio stations reported that doors were being torn off their hinges and a water tank flew away.

Continue reading article

Mexico City Mayor Puts Earthquake Toll at 115

MEXICO CITY (AP) — The latest on a major earthquake that has struck Mexico (all times local):

11:35 p.m.

Mexico City Mayor Miguel Angel Mancera says a total of 115 people have died in the capital following the magnitude 7.1 earthquake that shook the capital and nearby states.

That would bring the nationwide death toll to 245, based on an earlier federal government report counting 100 deaths in the capital and putting the overall number of confirmed deaths at 230.

Mexico City has suffered the highest death toll. But Mancera also said that two women and a man had been rescued alive from a collapsed office building late Wednesday, almost 36 hours after Tuesday’s midday quake.

Continue reading article

Church Burglary

The Bullhead City Police Department is hoping the public can help identify a man from surveillance photos who recently committed burglary at a church. On March 20th, the Potter’s House, located in the 2200 block of Kaibab Drive, reported that someone had entered the church sometime in the afternoon and stole a guitar. Police have since been able to obtain surveillance video of the suspect. He is described as a Hispanic male adult, possibly in his 30 – 40s, thin build, tattoos covering both arms and he was wearing a white tank top and jeans.

If anyone can identify the male pictured in the attached surveillance video photos, please call the Bullhead City Police Department at (928) 763-9200 or (928) 763-1999 after hours. Ask to speak with Detectives.

 

Accident at Fairway Village and 95

THERE WERE TWO MAJOR ACCIDENT SCENES ON HIGHWAY 95 THIS MORNING. THE FIRST ONE WAS AT RIVERVIEW AND 95 IN THE INTERSECTION. THREE VEHICLES WERE INVOLVED IN AN APPARENT HEAD ON COLLISION. THE SECOND ACCIDENT WAS AT FAIRWAY VILLAGE BLVD AND 95, JUST SOUTH OF LIPAN. A SOUTHBOUND VEHICLE LOST CONTROL AND HIT THE LIGHT POST HEAD ON.
NO REPORT ON INJURIES AT THIS POINT.

Burglary Suspect at Large

BULLHEAD CITY POLICE DETECTIVES ARE SEARCHING FOR A SUSPECT AT LARGE. 35 YEAR OLD TIMOTHY SCOTT DAVISON IS WANTED IN CONNECTION WITH THEFT OF A MOTOR VEHICLE AND SEVERAL RESIDENTIAL BURGLARIES. HE CURRENTLY HAS AN OUTSTANDING WARRANT. DAVISON IS A WHITE MALE, 35 YEARS OLD, 6’4”, 210 POUNDS, THIN BUILD, HAZEL EYES AND SHORT BROWN HAIR. HE HAS NUMEROUS TATTOOS ON HIS BODY, INCLUDING ON HIS CHEST, BACK, ARMS AND LEGS. ANYONE WITH INFORMATION ON HIS WHEREABOUTS SHOULD CONTACT THE BULLHEAD CITY POLICE DEPARTMENT AT (928) 763-1999. DO NOT APPROACH DAVISON AS HE SHOULD BE CONSIDERED ARMED AND DANGEROUS.​

Bullhead City Police Seek Help Identifying Suspect

BULLHEAD CITY POLICE ARE ASKING FOR THE PUBLIC’S HELP IN IDENTIFYING A SUSPECT FROM A BURGLARY AND CRIMINAL DAMAGE INCIDENT.

ON TUESDAY, DECEMBER 13, AT AROUND 8 A.M. ON HIGHWAY 95 NEAR THE SAFEWAY MALL, A WITNESS SAW AN ADULT MALE STEALING A BICYCLE (PICTURED).

THE SUSPECT DROPPED THE BIKE AND RAN TOWARDS THE RIVER BEHIND THE HARDYVILLE MANOR AND THE SHANGRA LA MOTEL. THE SUSPECT HAS SO FAR ELUDED CAPTURE.

IF ANYONE HAS ANY INFORMATION ON HIS WHEREABOUTS, PLEASE CONTACT THE BULLHEAD CITY POLICE DEPARTMENT AT (928) 763-1999.

Mohave Valley House Fire

A tragic house fire on Fremont Road in Mohave Valley claimed the lives of the two elderly residents early Wednesday morning. At approximately 1 am, a neighbor, who saw flickering coming through the window, noticed the house next door was on fire. He and his family attempted to assist the couple but the front door was locked. A young man noticed the windows cracking from the heat and tried to make entry through one of them. A large shard of glass fell on his arm and he suffered a severe laceration. The intense heat scorched the side of their house, including some of the contents inside. The house was burned to the ground and a Dodge pickup parked in front was also a total loss.

Body found in desert

On December 6th, Las Vegas Metro patrol officers were dispatched to investigate a body found in a vacant desert area. Officers were met by paramedics who pronounced the man deceased at the scene.The investigation initiated by the homicide section indicated the unidentified Hispanic male adult in his 20s or 30s wearing dark clothing, was likely murdered at a different location then the body dumped at the desert area where he was found. This is the 159th homicide investigated by Metro this year. The identity of the victim, as well as the cause and manner of death, will be released by the Clark County coroner’s office. Detectives are requesting the public’s assistance in identifying the victim of this homicide.Anyone who has information is asked to call the Las Vegas Metro homicide section at 702 828-3521.