The Missoula Board of County Commissioners voted unanimously today to provide $20,400 in community building grants to the Poverello Center. The money will help transform the basement of the existing Ryman Street homeless shelter into a daytime drop-in center.
If you're looking to place a bet on President Dennison's replacement, you may want to keep an eye on UM Provost Royce Engstrom.
In a cleverly worded release from UM this afternoon, Clayton Christian, who chairs the state Board of Regents and the presidential search advisory committee, announced Engstrom was among three finalists recommended by the committee, and would interview at all four UM campuses in mid-September. So, who are the other candidates?
Well, first you had to read the title of the release: "Provost named finalist for UM presidency." Then the first line: "University of Montana Provost Royce Engstrom has been named a finalist for the UM presidency..." Then the brief bio on Engstrom: "Engstrom, who was born in Michigan and raised in Nebraska, has served as provost and vice president for academic affairs at UM since 2007. He came to Montana after a national search from a similar position at the University of South Dakota."
Then, you had to read Christian's quote, which talks about a thorough national search and the committee recommending three "superbly qualified individuals as potential finalists." Yeah, yeah, yeah — but who else is in the running?
Christian said one of the individuals identified as a potential finalist accepted a position at another prestigious university and the other elected to withdraw.
It's far from a done deal, but Engstrom would appear to be the leader in the clubhouse. And he's a little lonely in there.
Here's the full release:
In this installment: toilet pride, unacceptable french fries and disappointingly milquetoast orangutans.
Curses, Foiled Again
People noticed Dennis Hawkins, 48, when he showed up at a shopping center supermarket wearing a woman’s blonde wig, a sweater with fake breasts under it and clown pants. Police in Swissvale, Pa., said Hawkins proceeded to a Kmart store, where surveillance cameras caught him shoplifting a BB gun. He then went to a nearby bank, showed a teller the gun and demanded money. Bank cameras recorded him stopping behind the bank to open the money envelope as a dye pack explodes, causing him to drop some of the money. He ran to a nearby service station, hopped into the parked car of a woman and asked for a ride. The woman got out, taking her keys with her, and called police, who arrested Hawkins while he waited in her car, covered with red dye, the wig stuffed in his clown pants and still wearing the fake breasts. “He’d be my candidate for America’s dumbest criminal,” police Chief Greg Geppert said.
Authorities in Greene County, Ind., arrested Justin S. Johnson, 21, after a bank reported he was trying to cash a check for $1 million at the drive-through window. Sheriff’s Lt. Bryan Woodall said Johnson left without any money, but he had presented identification to prove he was the payee, and the teller photocopied his driver’s license before informing him the check wasn’t valid.
This week marks the five-year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. You'll be relived to know that, as the city continues to rebuild, former FEMA head Michael Brown — aka "Brownie" from President Bush's infamous, "Brownie, you're doing a heck of a job" quote — is still doing a heck of a job, thank you very much.
The alt weekly paper in Denver, Westword, sat down with the now radio talk-show host to get his reflections on the disaster five years after he was largely blamed for the government's embarrassingly slow/inadequate/insulting response (see video below). Here's what Brown had to say about the Katrina criticism he still receives: "Okay, whatever."
It's an interview worth a read.
Find Rob Brezsny's Free Will Astrology online, every Wednesday, one day before it hits the Indy's printed pages.
ARIES (March 21-April 19): Why should you work harder than everyone else? Why is it up to you to pick up the slack when others are suffering from outbreaks of laziness and incompetence? And why should you be the fearless leader who is focused on fixing the glitches and smoothing over the rough patches when no one else seems to care whether things fall apart? I’ll tell you why, Aries: because it’s the Karmic Correction phase of your long-term cycle—a time when you can atone for past mistakes, pay off old debts, and make up for less-than-conscientious moves you got away with once upon a time.
Animal rights and environmental activist Rod Coronado finds himself in federal prison for becoming a “friend” with part-time Missoula resident and Earth First! co-founder Mike Roselle on Facebook.
Qwivals Family Fun Center south of Victor has closed, but it doesn't mean you can't ride its go-carts, play with its laser-tag guns and jump around in its inflatable "bounce zone."
The Ravalli Republic earlier this month ran a story concerning Ravalli County Deputy Attorney William Fulbright's long-standing troubles with bankruptcy. Fulbright is currently campaigning for the position of Ravalli County Attorney against incumbent George Corn (his boss), and it seems that in the interests of transparency Fulbright handed the bankruptcy records to the Bitterroot Valley daily. Long-ish story short, Fulbright entered Chapter 7 in Aug. 2003 after 10 years of fighting the Federal Student Loan Commission over the capitalizing of interest on his student loans. According to court records, Fulbright owed $47,095 in principal and $42,461 in interest as of Oct. 2004.
What the Republic overlooked—and what Bitterroot voters might find interesting as the November election approaches—are a number of professional liability claims listed in Fulbright's bankruptcy schedule from his years as a lawyer in California. Records with the San Joaquin County Superior Court show that then-Sacramento resident Dee Gomez sued Fulbright for legal malpractice in 2002, securing a claim of $250,392. In 2001, Monica R. Larkin (also a Sacramento resident at the time) secured a malpractice claim from Fulbright to the tune of $55,370. The San Joaquin court also lists a professional negligence case filed in 1998 against Fulbright by Alan A. Cheney, though no related claim appears in the bankruptcy schedule.
Fulbright, who first registered with the State Bar of Montana in 1999, did not answer calls from the Independent regarding his campaign or his bankruptcy status and has not returned messages left by voicemail and email.
In this installment: killer hybrids, wine vending machines and feline-filtered legal negotiations.
Curses, Foiled Again
Police were able to capture a woman suspected of robbing two banks in Butte County, Calif., after she locked herself out of her getaway car. Witnesses said Laura Jane Murray, 48, tried to borrow a tire iron to smash the window, but when Davis police showed up, she began using her hand to try to smash the window.
Two uniformed police officers were ordering at the register at a Starbucks in New Westminster, British Columbia, when a man cut in front of them, threw a drink at the employee and demanded cash. The officers “looked at each other in astonishment,” Sgt. Bruce Carrie said, and promptly arrested the 43-year-old suspect.
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