City Hires New Administrator, Approves Fence at Sewer Ponds
By REX ZIMMERMAN
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.
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.
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.