Category Archives: Commentary/Polls

Sumner Newscow weekly poll: The your current status with Obamacare question









Since the implementation of Affordable Care Act, i.e. Obamacare, are you better off healthcare wise?

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Sumner Newscow weekly poll: The favorite sport to watch on television question








What's your favorite sport to watch on television?

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Sunday Blog: Lebron James came home – nothing wrong with that

Five Cueball thoughts

Commentary by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — I believe Lebron James.

James is coming back to the Cleveland Cavaliers after a four-year stint with the Miami Heat. He gives his reasons here.

There’s plenty of cynicism out there  — James is self serving, he is just piecing another dream team together in Cleveland, that the guy is being disingenuous.

Lebron James goes from Cleveland to Miami back to Cleveland.

Lebron James goes from Cleveland to Miami back to Cleveland.

But I think he’s telling the truth. He wants to come home to prove something to himself.

Why do I feel that way? Because I went through the same thing a few years back.

I remember the day I left the Wellington Daily News the first time in 2002 – not really by choice. I was mad and determined to take my family and split. There was nothing else left here to accomplish. I had an enemies list a mile long, I hated the school, I hated the town. I had worn out my welcome. 

Sumner Newscow weekly poll: The Wheat Festival question








What is your favorite Wheat Festival event?

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Sumner Newscow poll: The patriotic song question


What is your favorite Patriotic tune over the holiday?

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Guest Editorial: New law turning over 20 mills property tax revenue to state treasurer is disconcerting

Guest editorial generic

The following is an editorial written in the Clay Center Dispatch. Former State Representative Vince Wetta sent this to Sumner Newscow wishing for its publication: 

A new Kansas law requires county treasurers to turn over the 20 mills property tax revenue they collect for local schools to the Kansas treasurer for distribution.

Many legislators were not aware of the provision, buried in a bill dealing with mineral severance taxes and oil and gas depletion funds, until after it passed. Yet it represents a power grab by the state that should be of concern to their constituents.

Now for the first time, Clay County Treasurer Christine Swaim will send at least $1.3 million in property tax revenue to the state instead of directly to USD 379. The district also receives general state aid in addition to the property tax revenue.

Republican leaders, who hustled the provision through a conference committee without general debate, said the change is necessary to establish an audit trail they say is required by the recent Supreme Court order on school finance, an excuse attorney John Robb, who represents school districts in the state, termed as ridiculous.

Letter to the Editor: EPA is attempting an unprecedented federal land grab

To the Editor,

The Sumner County Farm Bureau wants our fellow Kansans to know the Environmental Protection Agency is attempting an unprecedented federal land grab that will hurt Kansas businesses and damage our fragile state economy.

The EPA has proposed a rule that would allow it and the Army Corps of Engineers to use the federal Clean Water Act to dictate how landowners use their land.  Currently, the Clean Water Act only applies to “navigable” waters.  That is how Congress wrote it, and that is how the Supreme Court has said it should be in two different rulings.  The proposed rule oversteps that boundary.

The proposal says most bodies of water that run into a river or lake would be under the EPA’s power. This includes farm ditches, flood control levees or golf course ponds. It even includes low spots that only hold water after it rains. The EPA doesn’t care if those small bodies of water are on private property. It still wants to regulate them.

Sunday Blog: The problems with Netflix Live Streaming

Five Cueball thoughts

Commentary by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — The other day I discovered Netflix live streaming.

Some of you are smirking. Cueball just joined the 21st Century. But I also know a few of you are a bit befuddled wondering what the heck I’m talking about.

It’s not like I didn’t know about Netflix and all its wonderful soul-sucking traits. My kids have been live streaming for years. My only relationship to Netflix was paying the monthly fee for their entertainment. Which is fine. I’m an ATM machine for my teenage kids. I know my place.

My selfie...

My selfie…

Anyway, the other day, my daughter came up to me and said we needed Apple TV for the living room so we could live stream on the big TV. I resisted at first. I never understood the appeal of Netflix since I don’t like watching movies on my computer, because being on a computer is what I do for a living.

But, of course, I eventually relented. I am my teenagers’ slave… and ATM machine.  I ordered the box and to my surprise it came in a size of a wallet and even with my feeble technological knowledge I was about to connect the recommended wires.

Then something happened. I got hooked. 

Sumner Newscow weekly poll: The Iraq question








How should we handle the escalating crisis in Iraq?

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Sunday Blog: Talking elections, cliches, Redskins, Iraq, and the Wellington golf course

Five Cueball thoughts

by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — Five Cueball thoughts for June 22, 2014…

1. Election.

There is bad news and good news. The bad news is the world is going to hell in a hand basket. The good news is the security and safety room election is about to be over and I don’t have to write about it anymore!

There is plenty of places to educate yourself on the incoming election.

Sumner Newscow Weekly Poll: The World Cup question








What's your opinion of the World Cup?

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Sumner Newscow weekly poll: the Sumner County drivers question








What annoys you the most about Sumner County drivers?

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Sumner Newscow Letter to Editor policy

Sumner Newscow strongly encourages signed guest editorials and letters to the editors which have been traditional staples of the printed newspapers.

Letters to the editor and Guest Editorials will be treated prominently as regular news blogs, and with little editing only for basic clarity, grammar and syntax.  We will feature editorials and letters on Sundays. Please try to submit letters to editors by Friday noon preceding the next Sunday you want letter to editor blog to be published.

Contact us here at 620-326-0717 or e-mail us at if you so choose to have one published. The comment section will not be pulled for either guest editorials or letters to the editor. Thank you notes and cleverly disguised political candidate advertisements are not considered legitimate editorials

Letter to the editor: For less than a cup of coffee, the school children will be safe

To the editor: 

I am writing this as a concerned parent of five current and three future USD 353 students: I also teach dozens of preschool children who go on to enter the public school system.

I would like to urge the registered voters of Wellington and Mayfield to go to the polls on June 24 and vote to pass the Safe and Secure Schools Bond Project. Passing this will result in a tax increase of only $2.54 per month on a $100,000 home and will make our schools safer from tornado disasters and more secure from intruders who would like to harm our children. That $2.54 per month would also pay for needed repairs and updates to the middle school and elementary schools. 

Sunday blog: Talking hacking, the hospital, Lebron James, Godzilla, and Welcome Wellington sign

Five Cueball thoughts

Commentary by Tracy McCue — Five Cueball thoughts for June 7, 2014:

1. Welcome back…

Saturday, Sumner Newscow and our partner site in Winfield — — were hacked. We were down for more than 12 hours. Thankfully, my partner in crime Shane Farley got us running again. There’s nothing more disconcerting about running this site than being offline.

Was this the work of Leatherface?

Was this the work of Leatherface?

Thanks for your patience.

The explanation?  We were allegedly hacked by some unknown force and the server people shut us down in order not to contaminate the content. And with that simplistic explanation, let’s pay tribute to the greatest hacker in cinematography, old Leatherface of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Like the unknown Internet hackers, this is the kind of guy that you can kill off several times, but the jerk always finds a way to be reincarnated.


2. Hospital…

Sumner Newscow weekly poll: The Wellington Heat question








The Wellington Heat has started things up again in year 2 at Sellers Park. What's your view?

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Sunday Blog: Talking poll analyzing, water rates, and hatred for Donald Sterling

Five Cueball thoughts

by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — Five Cueball thoughts for June 1, 2014…

1. Bond analysis…

I feel like a political analysis like Britt Hume or Brian Williams…

The Sumner Newscow weekly poll this week asked readers how they will vote on the USD 353 security and safety room bond proposal (you can still vote here)

The results appear to be a positive sign for those promoting the issue with 48 percent saying they are in favor of the proposal and 31 percent against it. Currently, there are a 12 percent people who are undecided – a high percent which means a lot people can be swayed either way. Nine percent said they won’t be voting in this election. 

Sumner Newscow weekly poll: The security and safety bond election question








It's less than a month away. How will you vote on USD 353's school security and safety room bond election?

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Letter to the Editor: It is time for everyone to get involved.

Sumner Newscow letter to editorTo the Editor,

On June 24, a special election will be held in the USD 353 school district.  This bond election will cover some needed updates to some of our school buildings, as well as, making all of the buildings safer and more secure.    I urge everyone in the community to get informed before making any decisions.

A committee has been formed by concerned citizens, who want to get information out about the bond issue.  The KIDS Committee will be placing large boards around town which depict the architect renderings of the proposed additions and the security changes to all of the buildings for the public to view.  There will be information sheets placed around town as well.  Assistant Superintendent Larry Roth has been speaking with and will be speaking to several civic organizations in the next couple of weeks to explain the scope of the bond issue, as well as, answer any questions.

Sunday Blog: Questions abound concerning the hirings at USD 353

Sumner Newscow editorial

Commentary by Tracy McCue — It is obvious speaking with many people at various high school graduation parties throughout the community last weekend, there were concerns with the hirings made by the USD 353 school board.

Two weeks ago, the board hired Dale Adams, the current high school principal as the curriculum/technology director. It then elevated Adam Hatfield from vice principal to head principal at WHS. This occurred a month after hiring Hatfield’s wife Carmen as a high school counselor to replace John Gifford.

The two most common questions were:

1) Does the USD 353 have a nepotism policy?

2) Does the board have to at least advertise the position of high school principal before hiring someone?

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