Monthly Archives: October 2015

Chieftains end season 6-3

The South Barber Chieftains closed out their football season Thursday evening as they lost 63-0 to unbeaten Attica-Argonia. The Chieftains end the year with a 6-3 record while the 9-0 Titans move on to host a bi-district game next Tuesday evening at Argonia. See this week’s print edition for complete story.

Lady Chieftains End Season Just One Match Short of State Trip


Idallis Shaffer set the ball up for a teammate


Just one game away. That’s how the South Barber Lady Chieftains ended an outstanding volleyball season Saturday as they just fell short of a trip to the State Tournament.

The Lady Chiefs made it to the championship match of the 1A Div. II Sub-state at Attica but lost a battle to host Attica in the finals to finish their season with a 25-10 record. It was a tough sub-state to be sure, as three teams – South Barber, Attica and Norwich – all had over 20 wins for the season. It was also the final matches for seniors Nicole Blick and Kori Leech.

Top Eagle in Two

After receiving a first round bye, South Barber opened play Saturday against a very tough Norwich team and came away with the victory in two straight sets.

The ladies jumped out to a 13-6 lead early in the first match on good serving by Kaleigh Velasquez and Bryn Rathgeber, front line play by Idallis Shaffer, Morgan Polson and Madison Polson, and nice back line play from Nicole Blick, Emily Rugg and Anna Perez, but Norwich battled back to take a 21-18 lead late in the contest. Norwich was just one point away from a win, but big points by Bailey Roberts and Madison Polson and strong serves from Emily Rugg and Anna Perez pulled the Lady Chieftains even at 24-all. Anna Perez served for a 25-24 lead, then Kaleigh Velasquez got a kill for the final 26-24 win.

In the second set, South Barber again took an early lead only to again have the Lady Eagles knot the score at 12-all. From that point on, however, the Lady Chiefs played well and were in control until late in the set when Norwich made it a 21-20 score. Serving by Bryn Rathgeber and two straight kills by Nicole Blick sealed the 25-20 win.

No Luck vs Attica

After the emotional win over Norwich, the Lady Chiefs faced Attica in the finals and just couldn’t quite find the same energy against the Lady Bulldogs. Attica jumped out to a 12-5 lead to open the first set and some nice scoring at the net by Idallis Shaffer and Madison Polson weren’t enough to offset the strong hitting by Attica as they won 25-17.

Coach Steve Roberts and assistant Sammi Inman had their squad fired up for the second set and the ladies jumped out to a 4-2 lead on a kill by Nicole Blick, but Attica went on a 10-3 run to take command and the Lady Chiefs just never could catch up, falling by a 24-14 score to end their season.

Kansas Speaks Survey Shows Low Opinion of State Tax Policy

HAYS, Kan. — Sixty-one percent of respondents to the 2015 Kansas Speaks survey of public opinion in Kansas think that Gov. Sam Brownback’s tax policy has been a “failure” or a “tremendous failure” in terms of economic growth.

“Neither success nor failure” was the opinion of 32 percent, 7 percent said it was at least “a success,” and only 0.2 percent said it was “a tremendous success.”

Kansas Speaks 2015 is the seventh in the series of annual surveys conducted by the Docking Institute of Public Affairs at Fort Hays State University.

About three-quarters (76 percent) of respondents to the 2015 Kansas Speaks survey of public opinion in Kansas still think Kansas is at least a “good” place to live, a number that is down almost 10 percent from a year ago, when 85 percent thought Kansas was at least a “good” place to live.

Meanwhile, the “poor” or “very poor” opinion was up slightly, to 5 percent in 2015 over 3 percent in 2014.

More than a third (37 percent) rated the Kansas economy as at least “good,” 38 percent said the economy is “fair,” and 26 percent rated the economy as “poor” or “very poor.” The rating was lower among Democrats and those leaning Democrat.

Over half of respondents, 51 percent, were at least “moderately concerned” that the Kansas economy would seriously threaten their or their family’s welfare over the next year, 27 percent were “slightly concerned,” and 23 percent were “not concerned at all.” Female respondents were more concerned than males, and concern was also high among respondents with lower household incomes. Overall, however, respondents were less concerned in 2015 than they have been since 2009.

The Docking Institute of Public Affairs at Fort Hays State University conducted the 2015 Kansas Speaks survey from Sept. 14 to Oct. 5. A random sample of adult residents of Kansas age 18 and older was surveyed by telephone to assess their attitudes and opinions regarding various issues of interest to Kansas citizens.

A total of 1,252 Kansas residents were contacted; 638 completed the survey, a 50.9-percent response rate. The margin of error was 4.1 percent at a 95-percent confidence level.

Full results of this year’s Kansas Speaks were released Sunday, Oct. 25, in tabloid inserts in The Hays Daily News, The Wichita Eagle and The Topeka Capital-Journal. The full report, in pdf form, is available through the Kansas Speaks link on the page at

Some other findings in the 2015 survey:

• Asked who they would vote for in the next presidential election, 18 percent said Donald Trump, 11 percent said Hillary Clinton, 11 percent said Ben Carson, and 8 percent said Marco Rubio. Forty percent did not know who they would vote for.

• Almost half (47 percent) of respondents supported allowing same-sex couples to be legally married and have the full rights of heterosexual couples, 21 percent favored civil union that would give same-sex couples full spousal rights, but not marriage, and 32 percent opposed same-sex marriage in any way.

• Expanding Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act was supported “strongly” or “somewhat” by 62 percent; 38 percent “somewhat” or “strongly” opposed expansion.

• Allowing firearms on college campuses in Kansas except by security personnel was opposed by 58 percent, 26 percent favored allowing certain restrictions from colleges on the open and concealed carry of firearms, and 16 percent supported allowing open and concealed carry on college campuses.

• Fifty-six percent said the school funding system change resulted in them paying higher taxes and fees.

• Almost two-thirds (64 percent) of respondents said the state block grant system resulted in a lower quality of education for public school children in their school districts.

• On immigration, 53 percent supported “a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants with no criminal record,” 13 percent thought some undocumented immigrants should be deported, 7 percent supported “deporting most undocumented immigrants,” and 27 percent support “deporting all undocumented immigrants.”

• A little more than half (51 percent) of respondents said that a private business owner should have to provide the same services to same-sex couples as they provide to heterosexual couples.

• Respondents expressed high levels of satisfaction with their state senators, representatives and U.S. Sen. Jerry Moran, with more than 40 percent of them being “very” or “somewhat satisfied.” Twenty-eight percent of respondents were “very” or “somewhat satisfied” with President Obama, and 18 percent were “very” or “somewhat satisfied” with Gov. Sam Brownback.

• More than half of respondents did not know the name of their state representatives or senators.

• More than two-thirds (67 percent) of respondents said taxes on large corporations should be increased. Only 9 percent felt they should be decreased. Democrats and those leaning Democrat were more likely to feel taxes on large corporations should increase.


Injuries Make Chieftain Playoff Hopes a Long Shot, Play at Attica Thu.


South Barber’s chance to make the state playoffs took a big hit Friday night as the Pretty Prairie Bulldogs used their strong running game to pound out a 74-26 win.

It wasn’t so much that the Chieftains lost the game…they just started running out of players after a string of injuries this season that included both senior starters.

Coach Matt Cantrell and his squad are still alive for one of the two playoff spots from District 4, along with Caldwell and Pretty Prairie. With a 3-1 record, in fact, the Chieftains are still in second place, but face unbeaten Attica-Argonia this Thursday evening, October 29, in the final regular season game. They need to stay close to the Titans to have a chance., and some help from Norwich and South Haven in their games against Caldwell and Pretty Prairie this week couldn’t hurt, either.

Kickoff is at 7:00 p.m. this Thursday night at Attica.

Chiefs in Hole Early

After losing senior Kolton Pavlu to a leg injury earlier this season, the Chieftains also faced Pretty Prairie without their other starting senior, Tyler Martin, who was out with a hand injury. That spelled trouble against the Bulldog running attack, which featured a 230 lb. fullback.

Pretty Prairie wasted little time in taking control of the game as they scored on their first two possessions to take a quick 16-0 lead. But South Barber wasn’t giving up that easily, especially on Parent’s Night.

Junior quarterback Grant Cantrell led the team downfield with short runs by sophomore Trae Rathgeber and freshman Neal Gugelmeyer, then ripped off a nice third-and-long run to set his team up deep in Bulldog territory. Cantrell then found Rathgeber open for a short 7-yard scoring pass to close the lead to 16-6.

The Chieftains put more points on the scoreboard on their next possession spearheaded by a nice 4th down run by Neal Gugelmeyer deep in Bulldog territory. Cantrell then got good blocking up front and tossed a short pass to freshman Cole Coggins open for an 11-yard score. The second half was marred, however, by an injury to Gugelmeyer that sidelined him for the remainder of the game.

A couple of long Pretty Prairie scoring runs gave the visitors a 38-12 lead at halftime.

Chieftains Continue to Battle

Any sign that the Chieftains were giving up easily were quickly erased at the beginning of the second half as junior kick returner Gavin Doherty sprinted ?? yards with the opening kickoff to quickly make it a 20-point game.

But with players out and many others playing through their own pain, the bigger, deeper Bulldogs started to put the game out of reach. Two long touchdown plays put Pretty Prairie on top 52-18.

The Chieftains were quite done yet, however, as they put together a 61-yard drive for their final points. Grant Cantrell had first down passes to Gavin Doherty and junior Brian Farney. The drive was kept alive by a 4th down pass from Cantrell to Doherty down to the Pretty Prairie 12 yard line. A short pass to Trae Rathgeber took the ball to the 5, then Cantrell tossed a short pass to Farney for the touchdown. Cantrell ran for the extra points for a 52-26 score.

The Bulldogs used another long run to boost the score to 60-26 late in the third quarter. Forced to use all four downs rather than punt, the Chieftains gave Pretty Prairie a short field on their final possession, and they answered with a final short touchdown pass to end the game 68-26 early in the final period.


South Barber quarterback Grant Cantrell was 17 of 35 passing for 138 yards while he carried the ball 26 times for 60 yards. Trae Rathgeber was top receiver with 8 catches for 62 yards followed by Brian Farney with 2 receptions for 23 yards and Gavin Doherty 2 catches for 22 yards. Spencer Kimmell had 2 catches for 16 yards, Cole Coggins one reception for 11 yards and Neal Gugelmeyer caught two passes for 4 yards and carried the ball 7 times for 29 yards.

Defensive leaders were Gavin Doherty with 11 tackles, Spencer Kimmell and Cole Coggins with 9 each and Neal Gugelmeyer with 8 stops. Also on the tackle charts were Grant Cantrell, Brian Farney, Trae Rathgeber, Ruben Torres, Kolby Pavlu and Joseph Bowden.

Win Friday and Chieftains Make Playoffs


Running and defense. The South Barber made a big statement Friday night as the Chieftains withstood Caldwell’s homecoming excitement and big plays to roll up a 60-36 victory in 8-man Div. II District 4 action. The win gives Coach Matt Cantrell and his squad a 6-1 overall record and 3-0 in district play with two big games left.

This Friday night, the Chieftains host Pretty Prairie in the biggest game of the season so far. The Bulldogs were unbeaten heading into district play, but losses to Attica/Argonia and Caldwell the past two weeks have them in a “must win” position.

Unbeaten Attica/Argonia leads the district points race with the Chieftains right behind. A win by South Barber Friday night would lock up one of the two playoff spots from District 4 and set up a showdown with the state-ranked AA Titans for the district title on the final game of the regular season. A loss to Pretty Prairie, meanwhile, would send the playoffs into a battle of points that wouldn’t be decided until the final games were completed.

Kickoff this Friday night is 7:00 p.m. and there should be a real playoff atmosphere as only 8-man football can provide. Chieftain fans are encouraged to fill the stands and help the team get back into the playoffs.

Ground Game Starts Strong

South Barber set the tone for the game early in the first quarter as the defense quickly forced a Bluejay punt, then used runs by quarterback Grant Cantrell, Neal Gugelmeyer and Trae Rathgeber to pound the ball to the Caldwell 3 yard line. Gugelmeyer carried the ball in for the touchdown and with the extra point the Chieftains were on top 8-0.

That didn’t last long as the Bluejays, known for their big play ability, took the following kickoff all the way back for a score to trail just 8-6 after the missed extra points try.

Taking over on their own 26, South Barber went back to work with more runs by Rathgeber, Gugelmeyer and Cantrell to steadily moved downfield. A pass to junior Spencer Kimmell took the ball to the Bluejay 10, and Neal Gugelmeyer scored his second TD on the next play. The extra points try failed but the Chiefs were on top 14-6.

After another stop by the defense, the Chieftain offense had a 3rd and 8 play near midfield when Grant Cantrell found Gugelmeyer open over the middle. The freshman receiver made the catch and rambled 31 yards to the Bluejay 10. A short pass to freshman Cole Coggins and a penalty put the ball on the 1 yard line, and Cantrell carried it in for a 20-6 lead early in the second period.

A tough run defense set up the next South Barber score as Caldwell was forced to go to its passing game and was quickly intercepted by Neal Gugelmeyer. A 24 yard scramble by Cantrell moved the ball to the Bluejay 16 and scored a few plays later on a 4 yard run for a 26-6 lead after the extra points again were no good.

But Caldwell was far from done. After taking the kickoff near midfield, it took just two plays for the Bluejays to score to close the score to 26-14. Back came South Barber with another dose of Cantrell, Gugelmeyer and Rathgeber, who combined to moved the ball downfield to the Caldwell 5. On a third down play, Cantrell sprinted around end for the score and passed to junior Gavin Doherty for the extra points and 34-14 lead with just seconds left in the second quarter.

That was enough for Caldwell, however, as they threw a long pass into the endzone on the last play of the half that tightened the score at 34-22 at the break.

Bluejays Keep it Close

Several Chieftains were nursing injuries Friday night, but stepping up were players like Brian Farney, Cole Coggins and Ruben Torres who, along with senior standout Tyler Martin, held Caldwell out of the endzone early in the third quarter of play. But the Bluejays used a big 4th down touchdown run and extra points to make it a 34-30 game late in the period.

South Barber answered right back on a 28 yard run to the Caldwell 6 by Grant Cantrell. A penalty set the ball back to the 12, but Trae Rathgeber carried to the 2 and on 3rd and goal Cantrell carried in for the touchdown for a 40-30 lead as time ran out in the 3rd quarter.

All Chieftains in 4th Quarter

South Barber’s defense stopped Caldwell on downs to start the final period, then the offense used a run by Trae Rathgeber and pass to Gavin Doherty to set up a 1st and goal at the Bluejay 10. Next play, Cantrell took it in for the touchdown and scored the points after for a 48-30 Chieftain lead.

Caldwell fought back with a long pass followed by a 14 yard touchdown run to make it a 48-36 score, but that was it for the Bluejays.

Grant Cantrell ripped off three nice runs to set up a first down on the Bluejay 5 and on third down he pounded over for the TD for a 54-36 lead.

With just a couple minutes left in the game. the Chieftain defense again held Caldwell on downs and the offense started working time off the clock. On a fourth down play, Cantrell found Spencer Kimmell open for a touchdown pass for a 60-36 lead.

A final Bluejay drive was highlighted by a big quarterback sack by Tyler Martin and a pass interception by Trae Rathgeber to end the game.


Grant Cantrell was 10 of 14 passing for 129 yards and rolled up a whopping 220 yards rushing on 44 carries and 6 touchdowns. Spencer Kimmell had 3 pass receptions for 54 yards and Cole Coggins had 2 catches for 17 yards. Neal Gugelmeyer caught one pass for 30 yards, Gavin Doherty 2 passes for 15 yards and Trae Rathgeber had two receptions for 13 yards.

Neal Gugelmeyer had 14 carries for 76 yards and Trae Rathgeber had 12 runs for 38 yards.

Spencer Kimmell had 10 total tackles and assists followed by Grant Cantrell and Tyler Martin with 8 tackles each. Ruben Torres had 5 stops followed by Brian Farney with 4, Trae Rathgeber 3, Kadin Banks with 2, and Gavin Doherty, Cole Coggins and Kolby Pavlu with 1 tackle each. Neal Gugelmeyer and Trae Rathgeber each had a pass interception.

School Board Gets Good Audit Report, Still Looking for Accompanist


It was a short but busy meeting for the U.S.D. 255 Board of Education Monday evening, October 12, as they met for their monthly meeting. The starting time was moved to 5:30 p.m. so those who wanted to could attend the FFA Slave Auction held later that evening. Board members present were Mark Pollock, Doolie Rugg, Melissa Simpson, Deb Helfrich and Mariah Doherty along with board president Steve Allen. Board member Mike Anderson was unable to attend.

Good Audit Report

After approving previous and current agendas, the meeting was turned over to Randy Ford from the auditing firm Busby Ford & Reimer, LLC from Wichita, who presented the district’s annual audit report.

Mr. Ford briefly went through the report with board members and noted that all records were in accordance with accounting procedures. He said there was a bank account at the high school for a memorial fund that probably should be moved under that group’s ID number, and there were a few certificates of deposit at the high school that weren’t designated for a specific purpose. There really was no problem, Mr. Ford said, but the district just might want to handle them differently. He thanked board clerk Julie Johnson for all her help in making sure the audit process went smoothly.

Building, Vehicle Reports

After payment of bills totaling $288,209.70, the board first heard a report from Transportation and Grounds director, Keith Rathgeber. He said there are 19 total vehicles in the district and that all were in pretty good shape except for one big route bus. Superintendent Dr. Andi Williams said she will look into applications for bus replacement programs that might “be an opportunity”, and the district is also looking at a 10-passenger and under vehicle and is also looking at mowers.

The grounds, Mr. Rathgeber said, are in pretty good shape, and a contract has been signed with Terminex for treatments at the high school, in particular the Ag building.

Principal Marcia Cantrell said in her report that former South Barber instructors Jim and Jill Jacobs, both now retired, are paying for a pool party on October 29 for 4th through 6th grade Accelerated Reading students that reach their goal. The party would be at the NWOSU Wellness Center, and Principal Cantrell and the district thanked them for their generosity.

Several teachers had taken various classes to advance their professional development, including Lori Sahadi, Karen Lambert, Katt Scheck, Samantha Nichols, Deb Hitchcock, Cheryl Washburn and Principal Cantrell.

Parent-Teacher Conference was a success at the Elementary School with 96 percent of parents attending.

All students will be released at 1:00 p.m. on Friday, October 23, for the end of the first nine weeks. The annual Halloween Parade down Main Street will be held on Friday, Oct. 30, at 2:30 p.m.

Principal Brent Shaffer noted in his report that there was about 50 percent attendance at the Parent-Teacher Conference. He discussed career programs and state assessments and said the Heart of the Plains League Mass Band will be November 10 at Burrton.

He gave an overview of sports activities for the month and said that junior high basketball practice begins the week of October 26. The Cherokee Jr. High Tournament will begin November 9.

FFA advisor Kyle Jacobs reported that at Greenhand Conference, Savannah Hughbanks and Katie Holcomb tied for fourth place. The Land Judging A-team placed ninth, and the PALS night Oct. 5 was well attended.

FFA students leave October 27 for the National Convention in Louisville, KY. Attending will be Emily Rugg, Savannah Hughbanks, Kacee Hostetler, Idallis Shaffer, Dale Hoch, Katie Holcomb, and the winner of the local creed speaking contest.

Board Member Recognized

In her report, Dr. Williams recognized Deb Helfrich with a certificate from the Kansas Assn. of School Boards for her long-time efforts to attend Leadership Academies and bring that information back to the board.

Dr. Williams said superintendent evaluations were due Nov. 13 and April 1 and plans are to conduct them at the November and March board meetings. She also clarified a request to install an ATM machine at the high school and said the request was to install a point-of-sale card reader. Administrators will continue to evaluate the request.

The board also approved KASB policy updates for: discrimination complaints from staff, sexual harassment for staff, racial and disability harassment for staff, weapons, complaints for students, sexual harassment for students, racial and disability harassment for students, and complaints.

KASB policy updates provided as “first reads” for board members included: emergency safety interventions, graduation requirements, financial literacy, enrollment, and disruptive acts at school or school activities.

The resignation of Donita Ragan as musical accompanist was also accepted.

The board held a short executive session with no action taken.

Chieftains Roll to 5-1; Biggest Games Still Ahead

Brian Farney

Junior Runningback Brian Farney (21) follows the blocking of Neal Gugelmeyer (11) for a good gain in last Friday’s win over Norwich.

South Barber rolled to a 54-18 win over Norwich Friday night on a perfect night for football in front of a good home crowd, giving the Chieftains a 5-1 overall record and 2-0 in 8-man, Div. II District 4 play.

But by far the most important games are coming up the next three weeks. This Friday night, South Barber travels to Caldwell, which is 1-1 in district play and 2-1 overall after knocking off previously undefeated Pretty Prairie last week. The one district loss is to state-ranked Attica-Argonia. The winner will have a good foothold on one of two playoff spots in District 4, while a loss makes the playoff road much tougher. Kickoff is set for 7:00 p.m.

After that, the Chieftains host Pretty Prairie (5-1, 1-1) which plays Attica-Argonia this week. South Barber’s final game will be on Thursday evening, Oct. 29, at the AA Titans in Argonia. Should be a fun and exciting finish to an already outstanding season.

Chieftains Strike First

South Barber took the opening kickoff at their own 30 and it looked like the drive was going nowhere after a penalty. But on 4th down and 15, junior quarterback Grant Cantrell launched a long pass down the middle to junior receiver Gavin Doherty, who caught it in stride and took it in for the 55 yard touchdown. The points after try failed but the Chieftains had a quick 6-0 lead.

That didn’t last long, however, as a good Norwich running game pounded the ball downfield and tied the game at 6-all with a 2-yard plunge.

A good kickoff return to the Eagle 32 by freshman Neal Gugelmeyer set up the next South Barber score as Cantrell found Spencer Kimmell open in the flat, and the 165-lb. junior took it the distance for a 14-6 lead after Cantrell ran for the extra points.

South Barber made it 22-6 late in the first quarter with a big dose of Neal Gugelmeyer, who ripped off runs of 14 and 12 yards to get the ball to the Norwich 15 yard line. A penalty set the ball back to the 20, but Gugelmeyer got some nice blocking up front and busted through to score on the next play. Cantrell added the extra points.

The second quarter of play was dominated by defenses as neither team was able to score, although a long run into the endzone by Gugelmeyer was called back on a penalty.

Put Game Away

The Chieftains forced a Norwich punt to open the second half of play, then started to put the game away with another big dose of Neal Gugelmeyer, who pounded the ball down to the Eagle 5 before taking it over for a 30-6 lead after also scoring the points after.

Norwich answered right back, however, with a nice scoring drive to make it a 30-12 game. After a good kickoff return by Gavin Doherty, it was Grant Cantrell doing most of the damage as he used his scrambling ability to rip off three big runs down to the Norwich 9 yard line. Gugelmeyer finished the job with a touchdown, then caught a pass for the extra points and 38-12 lead.

A scrappy Norwich squad, which came into the game with a 2-3 record, showed it still had some fight left early in the fourth quarter when they used tough running and a South Barber penalty to get a first down on the Chieftain 1 yard line. Next play, a quarterback keeper scored the final Eagle points making the score 38-18.

South Barber was far from done, however. Runs by Gugelmeyer and Cantrell and a nice pass reception by junior Brian Farney moved the ball deep into Eagle territory before a fumble stopped the drive. The Chieftain defense then did its job with Spencer Kimmell picking off a pass and sprinting 51 yards into the endzone. He also caught the pass for extra points for a 46-18 lead with just over four minutes left in the game.

The Chiefs quickly forced another Norwich punt and this time Grant Cantrell took the snap and took off on a 40 yard touchdown run. Gugelmeyer scored the points after for a final 54-18 score.


Head coach Matt Cantrell and his staff of Roy Henson and Berton Walz made a point this game to get several players into the game to give the starters a break, and they performed admirably. South Barber rolled up 269 yards rushing led by Grant Cantrell with 150 roblox download yards on 27 carries and Neal Gugelmeyer with 110 yards on 21 carries. Brian Farney ran the ball one time for 5 yards and Gavin Doherty had two carries for 4 yards.

Cantrell was 7 of 8 passing for 100 yards and two touchdowns.Gavin Doherty had two catches for 45 yards, Spencer Kimmell two receptions for 32 yards and Brian Farney one catch for 20 yards. Neal Gugelmeyer also had two receptions for 3 yards.

Spencer Kimmell was in on 21 tackles and senior Tyler Martin had 14 stops to lead the defense. Grant Cantrell had 10 tackles and assists followed by Neal Gugelmeyer with 8, freshman Cole Coggins 5 and Ruben Torres 3 stops. Also getting tackles were Kolby Pavlu, Gavin Doherty, Brian Farney, Joseph Bowden and Kadin Banks.

City Hires New Administrator, Approves Fence at Sewer Ponds

bent10014louleone.jpg Lou Leone, candidate Broomfield City Council Ward 2 November 2013

New City Administrator Lou Leone



Kiowa will soon welcome a new City Administrator as a result of action taken recently by the Kiowa City Council. At the end of a special meeting on Thursday, October 1, the Council voted to authorize Mayor Brandon Farney to negotiate a contract with Lou Leone to serve as Kiowa’s new City Administrator. It was reported at Monday night’s regular monthly meeting that Mr. Leone has agreed to and signed the contract.

Council had previously held two other special meetings that were held on Sept. 28 and Sept. 30 to interview potential candidates for the position, which became open following the resignation ot Nathan Law to take a similar job in Louisburg, KS.

Mr. Leone, 41, presently resides in the Denver suburb of Broomfield, Colorado. He has a B.S. in business administration from Millikin University and did paralegals studies at Loyola University in Chicago. He earned a M.S. degree in Public Administration from the University of Colorado in Denver.

He hopes to be in Kiowa around the middle of November, Mayor Farney said, adding that he is excited to have Mr. Leoneon board. At the close of Monday night’s meeting, council approved 5-0 the mayor’s appointment of Mr. Leone. Mayor Farney added that Mr. Leone and his family include school age children.

In opening action Monday night, the board approved previous and the current agendas and approved bills for payment. All board members were in attendance – Bill Watson, Tom Wells, R.L. Simpson, Russ Molz and Brian Hill- along with Mayor Brandon Farney.

Conditional Use Permit OK’d

In an item that council sent back to the Planning Commission last month, the Conditional Use Permit (CUP) for property owned by Custom Rope, was approved to allow construction of a storage building on property zoned Single Family Residential. Three requirements were placed as conditions for the CUP: the building must be set back five feet from the northeast and west property lines; no item may be stored outside the storage building except a trash receptacle; and any conveyance of storm water, particularly that which is redirected from the rooftop of the proposed facility or paved areas, shall not interfere with or damage neighboring property with costs to correct any problems the responsibility of the property owner.

Council passed Ordinance No. 424 which will be published in next week’s Kiowa News.

More Study on Trailer

Bids were received for a 20-ft. trailer to haul recycling materials for the Kiowa Recycle Center, but after considerable discussion about how well the tractor could be loaded, it was decided to check further into a trailer with possibly a ramp or tilt deck. This issue was as much a safety factor for employees as anything, Councilman Hill pointed out.

Also discussed were estimates to get the forklift fixed at the Recycle Center. City street superintendent Gary Johnson said rough estimates of the repair costs were $1,500 to $2,500. He is waiting to hear back from the mechanic in Anthony with more information.

No to Storage Containers

Council next discussed a request from last month to obtain the cost of an 8 ft. x 40 ft. shipping container for use to store items from the old brick city shop building, which council plans to tear down eventually. Bids for new and used containers were obtained, but at the suggestion of Gary Johnson it was decided not to purchase containers and continue to use the present building as it is in good enough shape to store equpment for now until funds are available to properly tear the old building down and construct a new one.

Sewer Pond Fence

A portion of the fencing at the city sewer lagoons had previously been taken out for reshaping of the pond and now needs to be replaced. Graves Fencing of Kiowa submitted bids of $29,178.96 to replace all the fencing around the sewer lagoons, and a bid of $14,714.20 to replace just the portions that need to be replaced. After discussing options, council voted to accept the bid of $14,714.20 for the portion of the fence that is required by Kansas Dept. of Health and Environment.

Update on Sewer Issue

City Clerk Marlo Rugg said she has been in contact with Mayer Specialties about the scope of work needed for needed repairs in the city sewer lines. That company cannot do the work do to their inability to access the problems with their equipment, she reported.

The city is currently working with Bill’s Repair of Kiowa to see what they might be able to do.

The city clerk also reported that the utility company that bored through the city’s main lines has been notified and will be invoiced for the repairs. Bill’s Repair will also be doing that project.

Lineman Contract

Mayor Farney has received notice that the contract with Alfalfa Electric Cooperative, in which the city pays a portion of lineman Jason Cloyd’s salary for his services, will be terminated as of February 1, 2016. Mayor Farney has been in contact with AEC and plans to attend its October 22 meeting to discuss the issue further.

Meals on Wheels

The city clerk said she has had several citizens that would like to take advantage of a Meals on Wheels program, but has been informed by Elder Care in Great Bend that most persons wanting to participate would not qualify for the program. The delivered meals could only go to those who could not drive themselves to the store or restaurant for a meal.

It was reported, however, that Kiowa District Hospital might be interested in providing meals for such a program and has directed Kim Balding, Manor Administrator, to work to get the program in motion.

Rec Appointments

Council was informed of the need to make two appointments to the South Barber Recreation Commission for 4-year terms. Mayor Farney appointed and council approved the appointments of Brett Courson for a term ending in 2019 and Cris Holcomb for a 4-year term ending in 2018.

Council also voted to donate the Community Building to county law enforcement on Dec. 12 for a “Give Back Day” and to Kiowa District Healthcare for a fundraiser on January 16.