From the weeklies

Editor’s note: Each Sunday, the Post Register gathers news from the weekly newspapers in Rigby and Challis and summarizes the highlights. For information on these stories or to comment, email news@postregister.com.

Wilson pleads not guilty to first-degree murder

From the Challis Messenger:

Challis resident Mark Charles Wilson, 53, pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder in connection with the shooting death earlier this year of Pat Brown, his friend and housemate.

Wilson also pleaded not guilty to an enhancement of using a deadly weapon. His felony arraignment was held July 18 before Judge Stevan Thompson. The judge accepted the pleas and scheduled a jury trial for Wilson to begin Dec 3.

There has been discussion of a plea agreement, defense attorney Jim Archibald told the judge, but one has not been reached with Prosecuting Attorney Justin Oleson.

Last month Oleson took the death penalty off the table in Wilson’s case. If Wilson is convicted of first-degree murder, he could be punished with a minimum prison sentence of 10 years and a maximum of life plus a $50,000 fine, Judge Thompson said.

Idaho Cobalt Project construction ramps up

From the Challis Messenger:

Construction at the Idaho Cobalt Project in the Panther Creek drainage about 50 miles from Challis and Salmon has ramped up for the season after some delays due to a wet spring and early summer, officials announced earlier this month.

That’s put construction about a month behind schedule. Officials had hoped to finish building the mine facilities by the end of the year, but construction will go into 2019, R. Llee Chapman, vice president of administration for Formation Capital Corporation U.S. in Salmon and project general manager, said earlier this week. The hope is to stay on schedule to begin producing cobalt concentrate perhaps by the summer of 2019 and be in full production by the end of next year, Chapman said Tuesday.

The cobalt mine and mill is projected to employ 135 people, and Chapman said the company is committed to hiring locals. The projected payroll is nearly $12 million, $8.8 million of that for hourly employees.

Misuse leads to removal of recycle bins

From the Jefferson Star:

The Rigby City Council and Public Works Director Mitch Bradley decided to remove the city’s recycle bins Thursday, after Bradley informed the council of the continual misuse of the bins.

Bradley said the issues started with the cardboard recycling bin that frequently fill up. Often times when the bin is full, Bradley said people leave cardboard on the ground.

Prior to deciding to simply remove the bins, Bradley said he contacted Western Recycling to see if that company could empty the bins more than once a week or bring an additional bin. They told him they couldn’t empty it more than once, but they would bring a second bin.

Ririe increases lunch fee

From the Jefferson Star:

A 10-cent increase in lunch fees was approved by the Ririe Joint School District No. 252 trustees July 12, after Child Nutrition Director Eva Niederer told the board that the state suggested the increase for the 2018-19 school year.

According to draft minutes of the meeting, Niederer said that nutrition break will also cost students $1.50 next year for the junior-senior high school and remain free at the elementary school.

Superintendent Chad Williams said if the district does not start charging for the nutrition break, plus the 10-cent increase, the nutrition fund will be about $50,000 short.

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