Staff Writer
Pawhuska Journal-Capital


Darren McKinney was nominated and elected as chairman of the Osage County Commission during the board’s annual re-organizational meeting Monday.

McKinney, of Fairfax,has represented Osage County District No. 3 since 2013 when he won an election to complete an unexpired term of longtime Commissioner Jim Clark, who had resigned due to health problems. In the 2014 general election, McKinney won another election for his first full term.

District 2 Commissioner Scott Hilton of Skiatook was named as the board’s new vice-chairman and the Commissioner from District 1, Bob Jackson of Grainola, will be second vice-chairman. Hilton had served as Commission chairman for the past three years.


Rio Taylor is currently serving as the interim senior pastor at Lynn Baptist Church, 314 Midland Ave.

Taylor is in his final semester at Oklahoma Baptist University, where he is majoring in biblical studies, with a minor in ministry.

A native Oklahoman, he was raised in Inola and began preaching at the age of 17. Taylor’s passions include expository preaching, apologetics and evangelism.

When he’s not pastoring or preaching, Taylor enjoys riding ATVs, being with friends/family and reading.


Osage County Election Board officials have opted to close several precincts for the upcoming Pawhuska School Elections.

Election Board Secretary Andrea Conner recently announced that Osage County Precincts 102, 103, 110, 111, 113, 301 and 306 will not be used for the annual election, which is to be held Feb. 9. Conner said State Law allows a school district to close a precinct if it’s not entirely within the district’s boundaries and if there are fewer than 100 registered voters in that part of the precinct that is located in the district.

Voters who are registered to vote in those precincts will receive an application for absentee ballots, which they can fill out, sign and return to the Election Board in order to have a ballot mailed to them. In order for the applicant to be eligible to vote in this election, the applications for absentee ballots must be received by the Election Board no later than 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 3. Voters who receive their absentee ballots by mail must return the voted ballot to the County Election Board by mail. In order to be counted, absentee ballots must be in the hands of Election Board officials by 7 p.m. on election day.

The voters can also cast in-person absentee ballots at the County Election Board office between 8 a.m.-6 p.m. on Thursday and Friday, Feb. 4-5. Any registered voters from the affected precincts who believe they reside in the Pawhuska School District should call the office immediately — at 918- 287-303 — if they have not received an absentee ballot application.

Oklahoma Voter Registration Application forms are available from the Election Board office at 630 Kihekah Ave. in Pawhuska, as well as at most post offices, tag agencies, and public libraries in the county. Applications also are available at www.elections.ok.gov, and voters can check their registration status at http://www.ok.gov/elections/Voter_Info/Online_Voter_Tool/.