Category Archives: Government

FS Commission Special Meeting Minutes of Oct. 29

CITY OF FORT SCOTT

SPECIAL CITY COMMISSION MEETING

Minutes of October 29, 2020 Special Meeting #13

A special meeting of the Fort Scott City Commission was held October 29th, 2020 at 10:30 a.m. in the City Commission Meeting Room, 123 S. Main Street, Fort Scott, Kansas.

ROLL CALL:

Commissioners Kevin Allen, Pete Allen, Randy Nichols, and Lindsey Watts were present with Mayor JoLynne Mitchell presiding.

AUDIENCE IN ATTENDANCE: Jason Pickert, Deb McCoy, Bobbi Kemna, Janice Allen, Lynette Westhoff, and Michael Hoyt. Ty Parks with KOAM-TV, Channel 7. Jeff Deane appeared via Zoom.

I. CONSIDERATION:

  1. Discussion of City’s insurance – Jeff Deane, City Attorney said that this resolution is written notice of withdrawal from KCAMP Insurance. There was verbal notice given at our October 20, 2020 meeting, but according to the bylaws, since the Commission decided to move to EMC, written notice needs to be given.

Discussion was held why this resolution was needed and why James Charlesworth wasn’t ready with this resolution.

Jeff said that Mr. Charlesworth recommendation was to remain with KCAMP and not move to EMC.

K. Allen asked if we would still be covered by KCAMP in 2021 for situations which may have been incurred in 2020?

Jeff said that as far as he knows. Anything that is open and pending is certainly covered.

Discussion was held regarding purchasing tail coverage through KCAMP so there will not be a gap in coverage.

Jeff said that he would have to check to see the cost of this tail coverage with KCAMP.

P. Allen asked if the City can expect assessments from KCAMP after the policy is terminated?

Jeff said that he does not know this answer. He will get the plan documents from Deb Needleman and have an answer for them by the next meeting. This resolution does have to be approved and signed today to withdraw from KCAMP Insurance.

L. Watts made a motion to accept Resolution No. 16-2020 to withdraw from KCAMP Insurance effective January 1st, 2021. K. Allen seconded. K. Allen, P. Allen, and L. Watts voted aye. R. Nichols and J. Mitchell voted no. Motion carried 3-2.

APPROVED RESOLUTION NO. 16-2020 TO WITHDRAW FROM KCAMP INSURANCE EFFECTIVE JANUARY 1ST, 2021.

  1. Discussion of Interim City Manager position – Mayor Mitchell said that they were going to adjourn into Executive Session for this item.

Executive Session:

L. Watts moved that the City Commission recess into Executive Session for the purpose of discussing non-elected personnel exception in K.S.A. 75-4319(b)(1). The open meeting will resume in the Commission meeting room at City Hall at 11:05 a.m. R. Nichols seconded. All voted aye. This included the City Commission and City Attorney.

L. Watts moved that the City Commission come out of Executive Session at 11:05 a.m. R. Nichols seconded. All voted aye.

L. Watts moved that the City Commission recess into Executive Session for the purpose of discussing non-elected personnel exception in K.S.A. 75-4319(b)(1). The open meeting will resume in the Commission meeting room at City Hall at 11:37 a.m. R. Nichols seconded. All voted aye. This included the City Commission and City Attorney.

L. Watts moved that the City Commission come out of Executive Session at 11:38 a.m. R. Nichols seconded. All voted aye.

L. Watts said that per their discussion they will be looking at different avenues to fill the Interim City Manager position at the November 3rd, 2020 meeting. She asked the Clerk to place this on the agenda.

  1. Discussion of search for new City Manager – Mayor said that there has been some different research done whether it is to accept applications from here in the community, to hiring a firm to accept applications, or hiring the League of Kansas Municipalities to search for candidates for us.

L. Watts said that she has talked to the League and feels like this is a great service that they offer.

R. Nichols said if we use this program that everyone is welcome to apply.

R. Nichols moved to use the League of Kansas Municipalities to search for a new City Manager. L. Watts seconded.

L. Watts said that one of the things she likes about this program is that the League has discussion with each Commissioner. Each Commissioner tells them what they are looking for in a candidate and then they advertise, and they bring forth candidates.

R. Nichols said that they can offer guidance to us.

P. Allen said once again they are brought a proposal that for the first time before 2/5’s of the Commission has even seen it. They have no idea what it’s about and you want us to vote on it. What is it going to cost us? He sees a quote for services for $7,765 for base price services, advertising price $1,400 to $2,000, process options up to $2,000, and participating in interview process is $1,800, and this is the first time he’s seen this paperwork. He’s not in a position to vote on this. We have a meeting coming up on Tuesday and why not let us look at this first and table this.

L. Watts said that she gathered information beforehand since she knew this meeting was going to happen. She reached out to the League first and then also talked to our H.R. department to look at our options. She feels like if we do it ourselves, it could be perceived as a bias approach in the public. We do need to start as soon as possible.

K. Allen said that he agreed with Pete and this is hard to digest. He also asked for more time to look at it. He just received this and hasn’t had time to look at it. He wants to make sure we are making a wise decision.

L. Watts said that there are outside firms that would conduct a search that are far more expensive and could amount up to $20,000 to $30,000. There are costs using the League, but not as expensive as a private firm.

P. Allen said that he doesn’t want this to be our only source. We should have other options we could look at.

K. Allen asked again what the costs were.

R. Nichols said that it is $$7,765 plus the advertisement fee of $1,400 to $2,000, an onsite facilitation including a meet and greet for $2,000 and the interview process is $1,800. We could do the meet and greet on our own.

K. Allen said that he would like to look this over more.

L. Watts said she would rescind her second to Randy Nichols motion.

R. Nichols motion died for lack of a second then.

K. Allen moved to table this discussion on the search for a new City Manager until the November 3rd, 2020 meeting. P. Allen seconded. K. Allen, P. Allen, L. Watts, and J. Mitchell voted aye. R. Nichols voted no. Motion carried 4-1.

APPROVED TO TABLE THIS DISCUSSION ON THE SEARCH FOR A NEW CITY MANAGER UNTIL THE NOVEMBER 3RD, 2020 CITY COMMISSION MEETING.

II. MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT:

J. Mitchell moved to adjourn the special meeting at 11:53 a.m. L. Watts seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried.

ADJOURNED SPECIAL MEETING AT 11:53 A.M.

The next regularly scheduled meeting is to be held on November 3rd, 2020 at 6:00 p.m.

RECORDED BY:

DIANE K. CLAY

CITY CLERK

FS Commission Minutes of Oct. 21 Special Meeting

CITY OF FORT SCOTT

SPECIAL CITY COMMISSION MEETING

Minutes of October 21, 2020 Special Meeting #12

A special meeting of the Fort Scott City Commission was held October 21st, 2020 at 1:15 p.m. in the City Commission Meeting Room, 123 S. Main Street, Fort Scott, Kansas.

ROLL CALL:

Commissioners Kevin Allen, Pete Allen, Randy Nichols, and Lindsey Watts were present with Mayor JoLynne Mitchell presiding.

AUDIENCE IN ATTENDANCE: Travis Shelton, Dave Bruner, Ally Turvey, Rachel Pruitt, and Michael Hoyt. Jeff Deane appeared via Zoom.

I. CONSIDERATION:

  1. Consideration of a contract on a personnel matter – Dave Martin, City Manager announced that he feels like it is time for him to retire. He’s been here 10 years and seen a lot of really good things and had a lot of accomplishments and feels like there are good things coming this way. He thanked the Commission for working with him and allowing him to retire. He will stay on board and help transition through the next week. His last day will be Friday, October 30, 2020. He said it has been a privilege to work with the City Commission, staff, and employees and work hard 24/7 to move our City forward. He’s excited about being able to go home at night and spend time with his children, his wife, and grandchildren. He is looking forward to being able to focus on his family. He will miss the day to day dealings, but is leaving you in good hands with the City staff that you have. He will work as a private citizen to support the Commission. We have a great City that we can be proud of.

Mayor Mitchell said that she appreciates the 10 years he have given us. She hopes he enjoys spending time with his family.

R. Nichols moved to accept the retirement and authorize the Mayor to sign all pertinent documents. J. Mitchell seconded. All voted aye.

APPROVED TO ACCEPT THE RETIREMENT AND AUTHORIZE THE MAYOR TO SIGN ALL PERTINENT DOCUMENTS.

II. MOTION FOR ADJOURNMENT:

L. Watts moved to adjourn the special meeting at 1:43 p.m. R. Nichols seconded. All voted aye. Motion carried.

ADJOURNED SPECIAL MEETING AT 1:43 P.M.

The next regularly scheduled meeting is to be held on November 3rd, 2020 at 6:00 p.m.

RECORDED BY:

DIANE K. CLAY

CITY CLERK

FS Commission Minutes of Oct. 20

CITY OF FORT SCOTT

CITY COMMISSION MEETING

Minutes of October 20, 2020 Regular Meeting #19

The regular meeting of the Fort Scott City Commission was held October 20th, 2020 at 6:00 p.m. in the Corey Larson Gymnasium at Buck Run Community Center, 735 S. Scott Avenue, Fort Scott, Kansas.

ROLL CALL:

Commissioners P. Allen, R. Nichols, and L. Watts were present with Mayor J. Mitchell presiding. K. Allen arrived at 6:02 p.m.

INVOCATION: Jerry Witt said a prayer asking God for guidance for the City, our Government and City officials.

AUDIENCE IN ATTENDANCE: Travis Shelton, Russell Lingerfelt, Susan Bancroft, Nate Stansberry, Deb Needleman, Dave Bruner, Bill Michaud, David Luke, Harvey Feoke, Maura Chambers, Kirk Sharp, James Charlesworth, Harold Martin, Deb McCoy, Max Daly, Cheryl Adamson, Lynette Westhoff, Seth Needham, Michael Hoyt, Jerry Witt, Mark McCoy, Clayton Miller, Josh Jones, Janice Allen, and Max Fanning.

IV. PROCLAMATIONS/RECOGNITIONS: None

V. CONSENT AGENDA:

  1. Approval of minutes of the regular meeting of October 6th, 2020, and special meeting of October 9th, 2020.

  1. Approval of Appropriation Ordinance 1273-A totaling $617,512.35.

  1. Request to Pay – Lauber Municipal Law, LLC – $17,815.00

  1. Parade Permit Form – 3rd Annual Veteran’s Day Parade – November 14th, 2020

  1. Request to Pay – SAM, LLC – Utility GPS/GIS Project – $10,000.00

  1. Request to Pay – HDR, Engineering – River Intake Project – $2,090.00

  1. Request to Pay – Olsson Associates – Airport Runway Expansion Engineering – $18,040.00

  1. September financials

Pete asked that page 13 of the October 6th, 2020 minutes be changed in the last paragraph where it states that Randy Nichols stated that everyone was for the 1% sales tax. He had not had a chance to vote on it.

Pete asked that on page 20 of the October 6th, 2020 minutes be changed under the Director Report for Nate Stansberry when he commented that the alley behind the Union Lofts building would be concreted. Pete asked when that was approved, how it was approved, who is going to do the work, the scope of work, the drawings, and our cost.

L. Watts said that it was a project approved by the previous Commission.

Pete said he would like to see that documentation. Why was it never brought up until the last meeting? Where did it come from?

Susan Bancroft said that midway through the summer the City received a phone call from Evergy and apparently Rhonda Dunn made arrangements with the developers and with Evergy and once we got to the point where the alley needed addressed, that they would take the overhead lines and the City would bury them underground. Part of that agreement was that the alley would be concrete or asphalt. Chad Brown felt that the concrete would be better and hold up better. Evergy is ready to go and we are committed to this project at this time. This will benefit the Union Lofts project as well as the LaRoche project.

Pete said that he would like to know if there was an agreement made.

Susan said that there are emails between Evergy and Rhonda Dunn.

City Manager said that it was a commitment made by Staff. You could vote and decide not to do it.

Pete said that we need to learn to go through the proper channels.

K. Allen said that if a deal has been made with Evergy or someone else, it should be in writing.

Pete said on that same page, a statement was made by Nate stating that Cooper Street could not be accomplished this year due to Staff. Was that a Staff decision? A City Commission decision? He wasn’t consulted that it wouldn’t be accomplished this year. We have Staff making the decision that we aren’t going to do it now.

L. Watts moved to approve the Consent Agenda with the recommended changes to the minutes of the October 6th, 2020 meeting regarding the comments on page 13. R. Nichols seconded. R. Nichols, L. Watts, and J. Mitchell voted aye. K. Allen and P. Allen voted no. Motion carried 3-2.

APPROVED CONSENT AGENDA WITH RECOMMENDED CHANGES TO THE OCTOBER 6TH, 2020 MINUTES REGARDING THE COMMENTS ON PAGE 13.

Public Comment:

(Sign up required. Comments on any topic not on the agenda and limited to 5 minutes per person, at Commission discretion)

Harold Martin – Mr. Martin said he was here tonight to talk about wave boats and Lake Fort Scott. In the last few years, the amount of powerboats on the lake has changed dramatically. The activity has changed from tubing, skiing, pleasure boating, and fishing to increased personal watercraft activity and wave surfing. Both activities, wave surfing and watercraft activities create large waves which are damaging the shorelines, docks, more boats and more watercraft. His personal preference would be to prohibit this activity because managing it in an effective manner is nearly impossible. He reviewed some documents provided by John Eaten that provide data from research conducted by waves generated by wave surfing watercraft. One study concluded that height of generated waves were reduced by half at a distance of 200 feet. However, the other research states it will take 300 feet to reduce it by half. There are a bunch of different pieces of data and Mr. Eaten would provide that to the board. One of the comments in this document is that it would reduce the wave to no more than 10 miles per hour in a one mile fetch. That’s one mile open water. We all know that everyone lives on the east or west side and we know that the wind runs north and south and the lake is only ½ mile wide. We aren’t going to get that kind of wave action against our docks, but yet we’re getting considerably more than that from wave surfing boats and from these wave runners. An additional concern with these boats, because of their design and construction, is zebra mussels. These boats have pumps in them. They pump their bilges full of water in order to put that boat deeper into the water to create a larger wave to surf off of. If this boat is put into a lake somewhere else and that bilge is not clean and disinfected with bleach, the potential to bring zebra mussels to our lake is extremely high. If you’ve noticed in the past month, a report came out that said that Paola’s lake has zebra mussels, and two lakes right up 69 Highway, not to mention out of state lakes. There’s two or three in Missouri that have zebra mussels. This is a great concern. It doesn’t only impact the lake, but this is the City’s water supply. We need to consider that as well. There are lake residents that have had their docks damaged, their boats damaged, their shorelines damaged, and the owners could be forced to watch the front of their property fall into the lake, or be forced to leave because they can’t afford to fix it. He understands that he is not the only user of this resource, but he is probably not even in the majority of those wanting to throw all those boats off the lake, but we have to do something. He would suggest that the government because they are approving the activity that is causing this damage, should stand the cost of repair in the form of a tax rebate to the property owners who are having to repair the front of their property. Additionally, as a measure to help slow the erosion problem and comply with the Kansas Boating Safety Regulations, he proposed that the 2020-2021 and all future publications of the Kansas Boating Regulations be formally adopted into the Fort Scott Code of Ordinances Chapter 12.28, Lake Fort Scott. These regulations do govern boating activities on the lake without formal adoption because we are in the state. He believes by formally embracing these regulations with an active confirmation and enforcement campaign, the government officials can demonstrate their dedication to the community and the people who elected them. He also urged this body to take immediate action to correct the oversight in the placement of no wake buoys. Currently, the buoys on the east side of the lake form a line 200 feet from the docks. The buoys on the west side form a line 60 feet from the docks. The Kansas Boating Regulations state that “negligent operation includes operating above wake speed within 200 feet of a boat ramp, boat dock, boat storage, swimming beach, or within an area marked with “no wake” buoys”. The complete regulations can be found on page 13 and the State Statute is 32.1125. He has three copies of this book. He had one for the City Commission, one for Tom Graham, and himself. He has a photograph that is taken out of a book that he has that shows the public dock at Lake Fort Scott in 1975. This was 10 years after he acquired the piece of property that he has now. If you look at the right-hand corner of the picture you can see the front of his property. That property has been washed away by over 75 feet of frontage. This is not a new problem but a problem we need to address.

K. Allen asked if he was going to propose these issues to the Lake Advisory Committee.

Mr. Martin said that he has proposed it to them more than once and was ignored. He has proposed some of the ideas to the Lake Committee and was told he was in the minority in wanting to eliminate that activity on the lake, because trying to manage it is nearly impossible. He said he knows they want to keep it as recreation, but if we allow the lake to be damaged and silt in, you will lose your water supply as well as recreation.

K. Allen said that the wave boats are very popular right now. If the people are abusing the regulations, they should be notified.

L. Watts asked the City Clerk to get copies to them of the Kansas Boating Regulations handbook he handed out.

Mr. Martin said that we need a very active education program and enforcement program. As an example, there’s a 26’ to 28’ boat on the lake all summer with no KSA numbers on it, no lake seal, full of water, pulling waves. He lives at the lake all summer. It’s not that he’s not aware.

K. Allen said that we have a 24’ boat restriction.

Mr. Martin said that Jim Busone said that the City cannot do that.

Susan said that we have an ordinance for this.

Michael Hoyt – Mr. Hoyt said that he had a few comments. He wanted to address Kevin Allen who assigned him a task to look at the attorney bills for June and July and how they differ from their original format. He expanded his scope to look at each bill we have received and has color coded those. He asked for an extension of one meeting and he will have him his information.

He asked from Susan about Charter Ordinance No. 31, and how he can keep from having to submit a KORA request every month, not to see transfers from those funds until this is placed on the ballot.

Susan said it is in her financial statements every month and they are online on the City’s website.

Mr. Hoyt encouraged the Commission to watch the Planning and Zoning Board’s meeting last night. It was the perfect example of the workings of an advisory board meeting. They took comments from the people presenting and took comments from the public. This is a fully staffed board and this meeting went very well. He encouraged the Commission to please staff their boards. The Advisory Board for the Airport is still not staffed. He asked why the public hearing was held and the Airport Advisory Board was not present.

City Manager said that it was an F.A.A. meeting.

Mr. Hoyt said that the City paid $450,000 for a study at the airport. There’s not one person in town that can sight it. Who is going to protect the City on the contents of that document. I think it should be the Advisory Board of the Airport. He submitted his name nearly a year ago. Mr. Deane acknowledged his resume was on file. He spent 62 ½ years in the English language and if you give him something to read, he can understand it. You don’t have time to read those.

K. Allen asked how many members were on the Airport Advisory Board.

City Clerk said that there were five. There were two that have resigned. Letters of interest were taken but only one letter of interest received. She said she will advertise again.

P. Allen moved to approve Michael Hoyt to the Airport Advisory Board. K. Allen seconded.

City Clerk said she would advertise again.

Mr. Hoyt said that it would need advertised again.

City Clerk said that any other boards that have openings have been published.

Mark McCoy – Mr. McCoy said that he was here representing the Bourbon County Republican Party. They will be conducting a Trump parade this Sunday. It will begin at 1:00 p.m. at the north section of town. It will start at the Riverfront Park at 1:00 p.m. The lineup will be at Twister Trailer and Fort Scott Livestock. It will proceed south on National to 23rd Street, turning West to Horton Street, then North to 6th Street, then East to National, and then to Wall Street. They will follow all rules and regulations and speed limits and stop signs. They have been encouraged to be kind to spectators. Debra Martin has spoke with the Chief of Police and Fire Chief and they are both in agreeance with the parade. Pittsburg recently had a Trump parade and some local individuals wanted to have one here.

Seth Needham – Mr. Needham said that he was here two months ago on August 18th to talk about the ground covering and other safety issues at the Parks. He was told they were taken care of. It is still 8” below the recommended safety requirement. The Commission told him they were going to take care of it. I looked at the agenda after that meeting and saw that the golf course got 17 tons of sand. The Commission said they were going to take care of this, but they got sand for bunker shots. It turns out that they got sand four times this year. The Commission also just approved 51 tons of sand for putting greens at a cost of $1,506.00. In a year we spent $3,983 on sand, when there has been a problem with the ground covering at the park for four years. This is in the swing set area. They can put in dirt, mulch, or gravel. As a parent what he hears is that the perfect bunker shot is more important than his kid’s safety. The golf course has a new Stihl blower and he’s assuming that is for after he mows. Grass clippings on golf shoes are more important than my kid’s safety. When is something going to be done?

Mayor Mitchell said she thought it had been taken care of.

K. Allen said that you have seen us give Dave (Martin) direction. We are not to micromanage. We hire a City Manager and he hires the department heads and employees. If we micromanager, we are told not to. He has volunteered hours upon hours at the park. The County has brought in rock. He can’t go past what he is doing now and asking the City Manager that it be taken care of. It’s at Shelter #3 with a 2’ drop from concrete down to the roots.

L. Watts said she apologizes that it hasn’t been taken care of. She thought it had been and we will move forward.

K. Allen said we are making excuses. He asked the City Manager why it hadn’t been done.

City Manager said that he was told it was fixed and safety checks had been done.

Seth said that the electrical at the shelter house on top of the hill was still exposed. It probably isn’t very safe. He was told the bathroom was fixed at 3rd Street park and there is a lock on the door. His idea of fixing it is not putting a lock on it.

City Manager said that there is a water issue there.

K. Allen said that he has asked for two signs at City Hall to be straightened and that hasn’t been done. He gives direction to the City Manager and asked him to please see that these items get fixed for the safety of Fort Scott.

City Manager said yes he would.

Dave Bruner, Fire Chief, said that he was at the park and saw a couple of issues with outlet covers that need replaced and the conduit that needs replaced. He will take care of that. He didn’t look for any other safety issues.

K. Allen said that the City will be liable at some time in the future if these items don’t get addressed.

Josh Jones said that the County will bring rock out tomorrow to the park.

City Manager said that the City will spread it where needed.

Old Business:

  1. One hour parking in 100 block Main Street – Travis Shelton, Chief of Police, informed the Commission that the City does have an ordinance in place for one hour parking. It is for Wall Street to Skubitz Plaza. There is two-hour parking from 3rd Street to Wall Street. About 20 years ago, the signs were removed. We used to have a parking enforcement officer and that position was eliminated and the signs were removed. We can add signs again in the downtown area and if someone calls, the police officer can write a ticket, and that reporting person would have to come to court. His recommendation would be for two-hour parking from 3rd to Skubitz Plaza.

Bill Michaud said he was fine with the two-hour parking limit.

Susan Bancroft said that the ordinance will need to be changed to reflect two hour parking from 3rd Street to Skubitz Plaza.

Nichols moved to change the ordinance to extend the two hour parking area from 3rd Street to Skubitz Plaza and leave it to the discretion of the businessowners in that area if there are issues to contact the Police Department. Watts seconded. All voted aye.

Approved to change the ordinance to extend the two hour parking area from 3rd Street to Skubitz Plaza and leave it to the discretion of the businessowners in that area if there are issues to contact the Police Department. THIS ORDINANCE WILL COME BACK BEFORE THE COMMISSION FOR FINAL APPROVAL AT THE NOVEMBER 3RD, 2020 MEETING.

2. Consideration of update to Vicious/Dangerous Dog Ordinance with removal of Pit Bull ban – Travis Shelton, Chief of Police, informed the Commission that he and Max worked together on this ordinance and removed the section of the ordinance regarding the breed of Pit Bull. He formed this ordinance after the City of Iola’s in regard to the Dangerous Dog section. Travis said that he spoke with Dr. Nichols on this ordinance and he had a few suggestions to it.

Discussion was held regarding a few changes they wanted.

Travis will get this ordinance finalized and bring it back before them at the November 3rd, 2020 meeting.

3. Approval of the City’s liability casualty insurance renewal – James Charlesworth, Charlesworth Consulting, informed the Commission that he did receive the three quotes he anticipated for the City’s insurance. They were from KCAMP, Midwest Public Risk (MPR) and EMC. MPR is an associated trust like KCAMP but it is not cost competitive. Their quote came in at $317,337.00. They are just not cost prohibitive. In his summary report, he notes that both are outstanding companies. EMC is represented through a local agent, Billard Hammer, Hartman. They have a dividend program. We would be required to move to a April 1st inception date instead of the January 1st date that we currently have. He shared all the details of both companies. EMC quote is $263,992 which includes a $2 million umbrella option and a one time prior acts premium of $2,458 for the law enforcement liability. KCAMP is the lowest quote at $227,438. It is an excellent program and has offered stability to the City over the past three years the City has been insured with them. He shared different services between the two companies. His recommendation was to accept the KCAMP proposal. Both representatives are here tonight to address the Commission.

Discussion was held regarding the difference between the two companies.

James said one of the biggest differences is the flood coverage with EMC. There is coverage with KCAMP. Another big difference is the law enforcement liability from KCAMP versus EMC. Another issue is with the dams at the lakes. The difference in the two quotes is $36,554.00 or 16%.

Lynette Westhoff, Billard, Hammer, Hartman, informed the Commission that her company quoted the EMC firm. She asked them to look at the dividend payout sheet in the handout. The dividends have averages from 17% to 19%. She said that the dam at Lake Fort Scott is a concern with EMC. They offer training programs through EMC. She said that they are local and only a phone call away from servicing the City.

Susan mentioned many of the programs that KCAMP offers to the City such as Human Resource, Police, and legal resources.

Lynette said that they offer many of those same programs also.

David Luke, Executive Director, KCAMP, informed the Commission that they value the relationship they have with the City of Fort Scott and hope to continue it. He said that pools started back in the late 1970’s and have become popular with low stable rates offered to companies. He asked Maura Chambers to address some of the services that KCAMP offers.

Maura Chambers said that the law enforcement policies are one of the most popular services they offer. The Fort Scott Police Department has used 51 of their policies. These policies can be downloaded and used in various police departments. The FSPD has completed 160 of their courses they offer also. They offer a HR Assist program which is included in their premium. They have a Think HR program available also. They offer many safety training programs.

R. Nichols moved to continue with KCAMP for the City’s insurance. His motion died for lack of a second.

P. Allen moved to move the City’s insurance to EMC with Billard Hammer Hartman. K. Allen seconded. K. Allen, P. Allen and L. Watts voted aye. R. Nichols and J. Mitchell voted no. Motion carried 3-2.

APPROVED TO MOVE THE CITY’S INSURANCE TO EMC WITH BILLARD HAMMER HARTMAN.

P. Allen moved to approve a Resolution to Withdraw from KCAMP Pool Insurance effective January 1st, 2021. K. Allen seconded. K. Allen, P. Allen and L. Watts voted aye. R. Nichols and J. Mitchell voted no. Motion carried 3-2.

APPROVED A RESOLUTION TO WITHDRAW FROM KCAMP POOL INSURANCE EFFECTIVE JANUARY 1ST, 2021.

Appearances:

Jerry Witt, Riverfront Authority – Resolution of Support – Letter of Support – Public Hearing – Transportation Alternatives Grant Project – Jerry Witt, Chairperson, Riverfront Authority, informed the Commission that he was here tonight to request permission to apply for a grant for the addition of a walking bridge that would connect the south to the north over the Marmaton River.

Discussion was held if this public hearing could take place since it was advertised to be held at City Hall in the Commission meeting room.

City Attorney said that since this is a separate entity from the City and is not requesting any City funds, it should be fine to be held.

Jerry said in 2017 approval was given for the historical bridge to be moved from Fulton to Riverfront Park. This is the next step in improvements to Riverfront Park. This walking trail bridge would connect the walking trail to the South Loop Road. In 2017, the grant was awarded from K.D.O.T. in the amount of $749,000. The actual bids of moving that bridge came in far higher and the grant was declined. They went back and decided to look at a different option. The amount of this grant would be $621,000. Riverfront will supply 20% of that grant which is around $124,000. There are no City funds involved or any tax money. These funds will all be raised by Riverfront and used for those purposes. The grant has a deadline of November 6th, 2020. He asked for a Resolution of Support from the City to apply for this grant.

K. Allen made a motion to submit a Letter of Support from the Commission for the grant submission for a walking bridge at Riverfront Park. R. Nichols seconded. All voted aye.

APPROVED TO SUBMIT A LETTER OF SUPPORT FROM THE CITY COMMISSION FOR THE GRANT SUBMISSION FOR A WALKING BRIDGE AT RIVERFRONT PARK.

Kirk Sharp – Gordon Parks History Trail Project – Mr. Sharp appeared before the Commission on behalf of the Gordon Parks Center. He is here to discuss the Learning Tree Film which was made in Fort Scott in 1968. Gordon Parks became the first black film producer to make a major motion picture in Hollywood called The Learning Tree. There were a lot of memories made here from locals that were in the film. They have identified 12 different locations where the film was shot in Fort Scott. They would like to install signs with a QR code. This will assist with tourism, create awareness, education, and enrich our history. He asked for support from the City and approval to use the City easement for signage. He shared photos of what the signs would look like. He believes this will bring in more tourism into the City. He has talked to all the property owners where signage would be placed and they are all in agreement. He is working closely with the Fort and with Allyson Turvey, Tourism Manager. They have received a grant from the Fort Scott Community Area Foundation for this project. They hope to have it completed by June 2021 before the All School Reunion is held in Fort Scott.

K. Allen moved to submit a Letter of Support from the City for the Gordon Parks History Trail Project. P. Allen seconded. All voted aye.

APPROVED TO SUBMIT A LETTER OF SUPPORT FROM THE CITY FOR THE GORDON PARKS HISTORY TRAIL PROJECT.

R. Nichols moved to approve for the City easement to be used at these locations for the signage. L. Watts seconded. All voted aye.

APPROVED FOR THE CITY EASEMENTS TO BE USED AT THESE LOCATIONS FOR THE SIGNAGE.

New Business:

  1. Benches at Pickleball Court – City Manager said that the E-3 Foundation (Dave & Adam LaRoche) have asked to purchase benches for the pickleball courts on Burke Street. He asked for permission for these to be purchased and placed there.

K. Allen moved to allow the E-3 Foundation to purchase benches for the pickleball courts on Burke Street. L. Watts seconded. All voted aye.

APPROVED TO ALLOW THE E-3 FOUNDATION TO PURCHASE BENCHES FOR THE PICKLEBALL COURTS ON BURKE STREET.

  1. Consideration of Bids – Sanitary Sewer Cleaning and Video Inspection Bids – Nate Stansberry, City Engineer, informed the Commission that bids were taken for the sanitary sewer cleaning and video inspection of the City lines. There were 6 bids received with the low bid from Pipe Detectives, Inc. of Jamestown, North Dakota in the amount of $78,215.00. He and Michael Mix have talked to the company and feel they can complete the job. This is a budgeted item. He asked for approval of this bid.

Discussion was held regarding areas this would be used and if there were available maps.

Nate will get Pete a map of the proposed areas to be inspected.

R. Nichols moved to approve the low bid from Pipe Detectives, Inc. of Jamestown, North Dakota in the amount of $78,215.00 for the sanitary sewer cleaning and video inspection of the City lines. P. Allen seconded. P. Allen, R. Nichols, L. Watts and J. Mitchell voted aye. K. Allen abstained. Motion carried 4-1.

approved the low bid from Pipe Detectives, Inc. of Jamestown, North Dakota in the amount of $78,215.00 for the sanitary sewer cleaning and video inspection of the City lines.

K. Allen left the meeting room at 8:53 p.m.

3. Skitch’s Hauling & Excavation Invoice – Port-A-Potties – $2,461.50 – R. Nichols asked if this invoice could be tabled for two weeks. He would like to see the locations of these port-a-potties and dates and times of service. His invoices does not refer to any dates or times or locations.

Susan said that there is a bid for this service and she can get that information for them.

R. Nichols moved to table this invoice for two weeks until more information can be received. L. Watts seconded. R. Nichols, L. Watts, and J. Mitchell voted aye. P. Allen voted no. Motion carried 3-1.

APPROVED TO TABLE THIS INVOICE FOR TWO WEEKS UNTIL MORE INFORMATION CAN BE RECEIVED.

Kevin Allen returned to the meeting at 8:57 p.m.

Reports and Comment:

  1. Director Reports:

Susan Bancroft – Financial Discussion – Susan gave the Commission an update on the 2020 and 2021 budget changes. She said she emailed them information before the meeting. Based on discussions from the previous meeting, where 90% was approved to be allocated if the 1% Countywide Sales Tax passes, changes were needed to be made. In addition, the petition to take Charter No. 31 to a vote of the people requires changes in the budget for 2020 and potentially 2021. In the event the sales tax fails, further cuts will be required. Quality of life venues and public safety budgets will be at high risk for deeper cuts.

Changes at a glance:

Nine funds are affected.

Reduced General Fund Expenditures by 4%.

Reduced General Fund Transfer to Capital Outlay by $46,000.

Increased transfer from General Fund to Special Streets and Highway Fund

Increased transfer from Water Utility to General Fund.

Eliminated Transfers from the Wastewater Utility and Stormwater Utility to the General Fund

Reallocated Transfers between Water, Wastewater & Stormwater Utility Funds to Reserve Funds.

Added one (1) additional staff to Stormwater Utility Fund for Public Works.

Added two (2) additional staff to Special Streets & Highway Fund for Public Works.

Other concerns to reflect on:

General Fund Cash Reserves will drop.

General Fund calculations are based on revenues remaining flat.

General Fund future cuts will require looking at staffing.

General Fund match for grant opportunities reduced.

General Fund transfer to capital equipment & improvements reduced.

Special Streets & Highways still need about $80,000 to bring cash reserves up to three months operating.

Sick & Vacation accruals are currently an unfunded liability in the event an individual leaves or there is a reduction in force.

She asked the Commission to consider having a work session after the November 3rd, 2020 election so we will know the outcome of the sales tax election.

Nate Stansberry – Codes Update – Alley Progress – Nate gave an update on several items.

Lake Fort Scott Valve: Nate said that the lake valve is not leaking right now or if it is it is very meniscal in nature. He commended City Staff in doing an extraordinary job on looking at solutions. The lake valve is secure for the time being. It should hold through the winter season. The City is looking at the next step. The City has contacted AG Engineering to look at a new valve. The existing valve has been taken apart and will try to be refabricated. He thanked Bo Casper and his crew for their assistance in diving and repairing the valve also.

Codes Update: Nate said that 11 building permits have been issued, 32 letters have been sent, and 24 citations have been issued.

Alley Progress: Nate said that Evergy has their contractor on site. The City will go in after they are complete. He discussed costs of asphalt versus concrete. He got these numbers from Chad: 320’ at 18’ wide – Concrete – 107 cubic yards at $97.00 a year which amounts to about $10,000 plus the steel for rebar totaling $12,000. Asphalt costs would be about 212 tons of asphalt hot mix for 6” thick at $80.00 a ton totaling $17,000. His professional opinion is to go with the concrete instead of the asphalt. It will give us a better surface.

Discussion was held regarding the price of concrete versus asphalt and life span of each product.

  1. Commissioner Reports and Comments:

K. Allen – Appreciated the City’s workers on the lake valve leak.

P. Allen – Nothing to report.

R. Nichols – Nothing to report.

L. Watts – Excited to see the dog ordinance come forward to get passed.

J. Mitchell – Nothing to report.

City Attorney Report and Comments: Requested an executive session.

City Manager Report and Comments: Nothing to report.

Executive Session:

L. Watts moved that the City Commission recess into Executive Session for the purpose of discussing litigation, claims, and other legal matters, pursuant to the attorney-client privilege exception in K.S.A. 75-4319(b)(2). The open meeting will resume in the Corey Larson gymnasium at Buck Run Community Center at 9:46 p.m. R. Nichols seconded. All voted aye. This included the City Commission and City Attorney.

L. Watts moved that the City Commission come out of Executive Session at 9:46 p.m. R. Nichols seconded. All voted aye.

Executive Session:

L. Watts moved that the City Commission recess into another Executive Session for the purpose of discussing litigation, claims, and other legal matters, pursuant to the attorney-client privilege exception in K.S.A. 75-4319(b)(2). The open meeting will resume in the Corey Larson gymnasium at Buck Run Community Center at 10:02 p.m. J. Mitchell seconded. All voted aye. This included the City Commission and City Attorney.

L. Watts moved that the City Commission come out of Executive Session at 10:02 p.m. J. Mitchell seconded. All voted aye.

Adjournment:

L. Watts moved to adjourn the meeting at 10:04 p.m. R. Nichols seconded. All voted aye.

ADJOURNED MEETING AT 10:04 P.M.

Respectfully submitted,

Diane K. Clay, MMC

City Clerk

FS Commission Special Meeting Minutes of Oct. 6

CITY OF FORT SCOTT

CITY COMMISSION MEETING

Minutes of October 6, 2020 Regular Meeting #18

The regular meeting of the Fort Scott City Commission was held October 6th, 2020 at 6:00 p.m. in the City Commission Room, 123 S. Main, Fort Scott, Kansas.

ROLL CALL:

Commissioners K. Allen, P. Allen, R. Nichols, and L. Watts were present with Mayor J. Mitchell presiding.

INVOCATION: Family Minister, Paul Martin, Community Christian Church, said a prayer asking God for guidance for the City, our Government and City officials.

AUDIENCE IN ATTENDANCE: Travis Shelton, Russell Lingerfelt, Susan Bancroft, Shirley Hurd, Rick Hurd, Ann Rawlins, Devin Tally, Jenna Campbell, Josh Jones, Patrick Wood, David Lipe, Bill Michaud, Paul Martin, Janice Allen, Max Daly, Michael Hoyt, Michael Mix, Amy Marsh, Carol Marsh, Nancy Whitaker, Mark McCoy, Alison Leach, Kristy Bowman, Max Fanning, Nate Stansberry, and representing the press, Tammy Helm, Editor, Fort Scott Tribune.

IV. PROCLAMATIONS/RECOGNITIONS: None

V. CONSENT AGENDA:

  1. Approval of minutes of the regular meeting of September 1st. special meeting of September 21st, 2020, and special meeting of September 28th, 2020.

  1. Approval of Appropriation Ordinance 1272-A totaling $500,184.22.

  1. Certificate of Appropriateness – Downtown Walking Trail – signage

  1. Request to Pay – HDR Engineering – River Intake Structure – $6,001.05

  1. Request to Pay – SAM, LLC – GPS/GIS Project – Water Utility – $35,000.00

  1. Pay Request #13 – Crossland Heavy Contractors, Inc – River Intake Structure – $21,401.91

  1. Request to Pay – Insituform – Sewer Rehabilitation – $126,592.72

  1. Request to Pay #4 – Home Center Construction – Water Treatment Plant Fire – $9,320.00

  1. Request to Pay – Buildet, LLC – Water Treatment Plant Fire – $45,000.00

  1. Request to Pay – MIH – 3RK – $46,417.05

  1. Request to Pay – Rory Chaplin – $1,229.93

  1. Request to Pay – Lauber Municipal Law, LLC – August – $16,607.50

  1. August financials

L. Watts asked that Items J and K be removed from the Consent Agenda for further discussion.

P. Allen asked that Item G be removed from the Consent Agenda for further discussion.

L. Watts moved to approve the Consent Agenda with the removal of Items G, J, and K. R. Nichols seconded. P. Allen, R. Nichols, L. Watts and J. Mitchell voted aye. K. Allen voted no. Motion carried 4-1.

APPROVED CONSENT AGENDA WITH REMOVAL OF ITEMS G, J, AND K.

P. Allen said that on the Request to Pay – Insituform – Sewer Rehabilitation – $126,592.72, he would like to address the fact that we are sending over $190,000 to an out of town contractor. This is work that the City of Fort Scott should do themselves and could do.

L. Watts said that when the work was originally approved, it was due to the fact that the lines were currently under buildings, under pavement or concrete and we were unable to do that work.

P. Allen said that he wanted it known that we could have done most of this work ourselves.

L. Watts questioned Items J & K – Request to Pay – MIH – 3RK – $46,417.05 Request to Pay – Rory Chaplin – $1,229.93. She asked if we pay out to the individual as well as the contractor.

Susan said that she called the State back in June on this issue to make sure we were following the correct guidelines. He is a sub-contractor that works for him and can be paid directly.

L. Watts moved to approve Items G, J & K. R. Nichols seconded. R. Nichols, L. Watts, and J. Mitchell voted aye. K. Allen and P. Allen voted no. Motion carried 3-2.

APPROVED ITEMS G, J & K FROM THE CONSENT AGENDA.

Public Comment:

(Sign up required. Comments on any topic not on the agenda and limited to 5 minutes per person, at Commission discretion)

Shirley Hurd – Shirley said that she is a lifelong resident of Fort Scott and a past and present member and researcher with the Old Fort Genealogical Society. She wanted to talk to them about a cemetery named Mayhugh Cemetery that is located in Fort Scott. It is an abandoned cemetery but was active from 1868 until 1933. It is located just north of the City of Fort Scott’s Wastewater Treatment Plant. Access to the cemetery is by a gravel and dirt road. The land is near the river and floods frequently. This cemetery was set out in a deed in 1885 when the owner, Henry Mayhugh, sold all but a 100’ X 100’ section where his son-in-law was buried. In 1973, Gerald Wood, member of Old Fort Genealogical Society, met with Chet Ober, owner of the surrounding land. Mr. Ober said that he tried diligently to get someone to help preserve the cemetery, but when they were unable to do so, had it bulldozed since they needed the land. This information was found in the 1980 Old Fort Log newsletter. Additionally, more information about the Mayhugh Cemetery was found in the 1995 issue. Part of the statement in the article read, “No direct evidence has been found recently but in a deep ravine to the northeast was found a sizable portion of a homemade sandstone marker. The lettering on this is not legible. About 1995, she started her research on the Mayhugh Cemetery. She and two other members of O.F.G.S. made a visit to Chet Ober and asked if he would show them where the Mayhugh Cemetery was. The location he took them to was where the Mayhugh Cemetery #2 was located. Mr. Ober told them that he asked Bourbon County several times to fix up the cemetery. He said the County dozed the tombstones into the river and used the ground as farmland. It is unknown when the stones were dozed. During this time, Wilma Witherspoon and herself updated the list of names up to 105 buried in the Mayhugh. In 2006, Sandra Dudley called her and asked about the cemetery. She told her all that she knew about it. She called again when she tried to get into the cemetery area and found a sign that stated Do Not Enter – Hazardous Waste – Keep Out. A City of Fort Scott employee came out and told her that she was not allowed on the property and that it was private property. In 2007, Sandra Dudley published a booklet named, “The Buried Roots of African American Ancestry in Fort Scott, Kansas”. This book would have the short history of the Mayhugh cemetery. In 2019, about 25 years after she first started researching the Mayhugh Cemetery, she resumed her search to find all that she could about Mayhugh and those buried there. In 2020, Ann Rawlins joined the research of the Mayhugh and they soon located Mayhugh Cemetery #2 from aerial maps. They believed that Mayhugh #1 could no longer hold any more burials in the 100’ X 100’ plot. The burials were started north of the original site and then east just south of the riverbank. In August of 2020, she talked with the daughter of Chet Ober who stated she never saw any upright tombstones in the area while riding horses as a child. She did state that she saw large pieces of tombstone with writing on them in the southwest corner of the property. Those buried in the Mayhugh Cemetery were predominantly African American residents of Fort Scott and Bourbon County and most lived on the east side of Fort Scott. The updated list of names has grown to about 175 that are buried in the Mayhugh. Some were early citizens and lifetime residents of Bourbon County that worked, married, raised families, played, and died in our community. There is a Civil War soldier buried in Mayhugh along with some that were freed as slaves and retained their slave owner’s names. There is an entire family that died in 1911 through 1913 from whooping cough and other complications due to disease at that time. There are newborns, children, family, neighbors, and a couple that lived to be 100 years old. There are so many stories of these families that need to be told. It is too late to restore the area where the cemetery is, but we can honor them with a memorial stone with all the names engraved that have been located. That is what she would like to see happen. Her plan is to have a donation set up for the memorial stone and hopes that the City can help and make a small donation to this. She said to contact her for more information on the Mayhugh Cemetery. She said that Ann Rawlins will discuss the site research they have completed.

Ann Rawlins – Ann said that she is here to update them on the Mayhugh #1 and Mayhugh #2 cemeteries. She also works at the O.F.G.S. It was unknown there was a separate site until the first of this year when her twin brother, Dr. Wayne R. Tucker located the site using lidar aerial photography. Once this was discovered, Phase I was authorized and Phase II soon followed as they located and recorded GPS coordinates of several surface items. They have been authorized by Phase II to dig but are still working on surface finds. She shared photos with the Commission that showed the woods to the west, north and east of the mound where most of the concentration of burials have been suspected in previous explorations and then proven with lidar photos. In the trees on the west side and southward are further burials which continue to the south edge of the plowed field. Crossing a wide ditch, the burials then continue from the grassy area south to the deeded area of Mayhugh #1 which can be seen in another photo she shared. She used the east and west ditch line as the distinction line between Mayhugh #1 to the south and Mayhugh #2 to the north. Shirley has been able to identify and confirm that at least 175 persons were buried in Mayhugh Cemetery. How many in Mayhugh #1 or Mayhugh #2 is unknown. There are many who would never have been posted in the local newspapers or death records so the total number of burials may never be known. The next photo she shared showed the terrain and conditions of one of the debris fields located in Mayhugh #2. In this debris field, she has received confirmation that Commissioner Pete Allen’s find was indeed an old headstone. Three debris fields had been located when this photo was taken last week, she and Shirley located a fourth site. The fourth site has remnants of three different marble or granite pieces that would have been too large to be moved in a flood. Mayhugh #2 and other sites have been reported to Robert Hord, who is the State Archeologist with the State Historical Society and he is investing our sites as viable historical or archeological locations. At this moment, we already have a moratorium in effect signed by the City Manager, Dave Martin, and the City crews have been notified they can only use the bush hog to maintain the area and no longer add anything to the ground. She showed a photo of a rock with the letters A N Y as noted by the arrows. The letters are not distinctive of bulldozer or tractor scratches as lines on each letter stops where they should. The letters also have sharp edges and show signs of human workings. The rock on the left side of the photo is covered with substance that still needs to be identified. They have found two other stones which have been identified as headstones covered in the same substance. They have not been able to read any letters, but the old stones didn’t always note a name. A black and white image was left in the O.F.G.S. library some time between 1997 and 2019 but don’t know by whom. This image could be the headstone a local woman told Shirley she remembered as a young girl seeing in the grass while riding a horse in the area or what they believe is Mayhugh #1; or, it could be part of the debris field to the north or east side of Mayhugh #2 as reported in previous researchers interviews; or, it could be false information – they just don’t know. Shirley has attempted to locate Essex McLemore’s name in genealogical research several times but to no avail. They can only assume at this time that this is a true representation of a stone in Mayhugh #1 or Mayhugh #2, but until they have further proof, they are recording him as a possible burial. His date of birth was 3/13/1804 and date of death is 11/23/1868. She showed a photo of Rick Hurd and Pete Allen down in the ravine attempting to locate the site of the bulldozed headstones. None were found, but until it gets cold, a thorough exploration of the site will be put off due to copperheads. She thanked them for listening to her presentation and thanked them for their interest in preserving this very old, very large, African American cemetery.

Kevin Allen said that he would donate a machine if needed for their digging.

Bill Michaud – Bill appeared before the Commission about embarking on a new project in the downtown area. He is starting work and making lots of progress on the old Kress building. This is the B Works Center – the Bourbon County Workforce and Entrepreneurship Resource Center on the second floor of the Kress building. On the first floor, they will be opening a new grocery store. They are pushing to have the store open by the end of the year. A downtown grocery store is not brand new to the downtown and has been brought to the surface several times. A downtown grocery store will be a huge asset but one of the reasons that has elevated the need is the new apartments that are occupied downtown. This will be convenient for those that work in the area, live in the area, and one of the benefits they hope to offer is easy in and out convenience. He asked the Commission to consider and approve one hour parking in the 100 block of Main Street. One of the reasons the business would fail is to not have that easy in and out access to the grocery store. The apartment complex that is opening will have a parking lot and the tenants can migrate to park there as well as the other businesses in that block. The best suggestion is to add one hour parking in that block. He has spoken to Norm Conard, Georgia Brown, Main Street Gallery and Gifts, Stephanie Anthony at Spoiled Brat, JoLynne Mitchell, and Dick and Jan Hedges, and all are in favor of this. He tried to reach Jared Leek, but had to leave a message. He said they do not expect police enforcement of the one hour parking, but only on a call in basis. His request is to allow one hour parking in the 100 block of Main Street.

L. Watts asked if there was a time frame for the parking request. She would like to speak to Travis Shelton, Chief of Police about this first. She asked if he would be opposed to tabling this issue until the second meeting in October.

Bill said if it doesn’t happen, the store will die a slow life. It has to be a convenience for people in this area.

P. Allen said that there was an ordinance that already addressed the parking on Main Street that is in effect. We need to research this first.

Bill said that he would be okay with tabling this till the October 20th, 2020 meeting.

City Manager said that we need to discuss this with Chief Shelton on implementation.

Michael Hoyt – Mr. Hoyt said he would start his comments addressing the question that Kevin Allen has asked numerous times. What did the taxpayers pay for a Code of Ethics and Code of Procedures produced by Mr. Deane? The exchange of the last meeting was very well chronicled in our newspaper by Tammy Helm and considering all the legal speech and minutia, she did a very good job. As most of you are aware, he’s had trouble with Mr. Deane’s billings since the very first bill. He is very aware of how lawyer bills are created. Back in the day when Bill Gates of Microsoft was still flying Coach, he worked with some software development teams with three programmers running a legal time billing system. You can bill in ten minute increments and would pick up the phone and $17.50, he would hang up the phone, and so forth. He knows how it goes. From his review, there would have been some bills in the ball park of $15,000 to $20,000 for a 15 page document. He has a competing bid for the same documents that were produced by the League of Kansas Municipalities, where you can get three documents with all the same topics that we paid $20,000 for, for $79.00. If Mr. Deane found in his initial review of this engagement for the City of Fort Scott, then shame on him for not ordering us these documents and billing us $250.00. Most disturbing is the original bills for June and July, and the bills rewritten just a week ago. He highlighted the old bill with the ethics and procedures on the bill with yellow. He showed them a copy with the highlights.

Another topic – transfers. Susan, the financial statements indicate significant transfers this month from the sewer and stormwater funds. You know these transfers, and unless they are used for those purposes, are not legal. Ordinance 31 would change that, but he can report that a sufficient petition with 150% of the signatures required was delivered to the County Clerk yesterday and will require the voters to enact these transfer legalities to make these transfers legal.

The last issue, and he has written each and every one of you about this, but not one of you have responded to him. The advisory boards that are active for this commission are not being staffed. There are vacant positions that have been vacant since last year. If you’re waiting for the City Manager to give to you a suggestion that you might want to staff them, he’s only going to do that under his agenda, and we know what his agenda is. You all need to make the initiative and staff those advisory boards.

K. Allen asked him for a copy of his highlighted material.

L. Watts said that there was a statement made and it was made up of opinion. Susan Bancroft has made up a fact-based information sheet about the questions that have been raised. He asked if she could take the time to go over it for the public and the Commission.

Susan said that the first thing she wanted to address was the transfers that Mr. Hoyt is pointing out in the financial statement. She shared it on the screen with the public and the Commission. These transfers are all legal transfers. A transfer from the general fund to debt service is to pay for debt service. If it was in the general fund or the debt service fund, it would not matter as it was still going to pay for debt service. These are transfers that have been cleared with our auditor. These are legal to do this way. It is the same for water, wastewater, and stormwater. You are simply making a transfer to debt service. If it wasn’t spent in this debt service fund, it will be spent in the water, wastewater or stormwater fund. It is money from those funds to spend in those specific purposes. It is truly stormwater debt, wastewater debt, and water debt. The transfer from the general fund to the equipment reserve fund, the Commission has an ordinance that covers that from the general fund to special streets and highway. Transfer from water to water capital reserves, there’s a statute that covers that. Transfer from wastewater to wastewater capital reserves, there’s a statute and an ordinance that covers that. Transfer from stormwater to stormwater reserve, there is no statute that governs stormwater unless you are doing a special assessment. We have a stormwater utility. That is something as a body that you should look at and create an ordinance that governs what that stormwater can be used for. Transfer from the water to the general fund is a legal transfer per statute. Every transfer that has been made to date is legal.

P. Allen said he disagrees. He thinks we need to go back to the ordinance that specifies what the money can be used for and how the accounts are set up. There are two separate accounts that are set up by ordinance and neither of those accounts are set up.

Susan asked what the two accounts are.

P. Allen said that one is the maintenance and repair account, and one is the replacement fund.

Susan said that your sewer fund is your maintenance and repair account and your reserve fund is the other one. It is a legal transfer per our ordinance.

P. Allen said that all the money that comes in goes into the general fund.

Susan said that no it does not. When we have utility dollars, they go into the utility fund.

P. Allen said then they are transferred into the general fund.

Susan said not always.

P. Allen said you are looking at transfers of $1.6 million.

Susan said you have to look at it by fund. Most of the $1 million is for debt service.

P. Allen asked debt for what.

Susan said for water lines, water towers, water repairs.

P. Allen said we don’t transfer money out of storm sewers for the water lines.

Susan said that everything she is transferring is in your budget. She said that all of her numbers tie out to debt service.

P. Allen said that it doesn’t look good that we have crumbling sewers and we are transferring $1.6 million out of that fund. We should put $1.6 million into the ground.

Susan told him he was misleading people. It is specifically for water, wastewater, or stormwater – those specific items.

P. Allen said he would like to see it. He said he was not misleading anyone, just expressing his opinion.

Susan said that the debt service that we move out is about $1.5 million. That’s just debt service. We have to pay that.

P. Allen asked what it was for.

Susan said that we had 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, we had water, storm, streets, sewer, aquatic center, streets in 2012, in 2016 a large sewer project. It’s all right in the budget document.

P. Allen said you can’t transfer the money out of sewer fund to the water fund.

Susan said that she didn’t. She transferred to debt service. She can tie it out to a project specifically. She wants the community to understand when she makes a transfer from the water fund to the debt service fund, it is for a water expense.

L. Watts said that the confusion is valid on both sides. She urged anyone with questions to come and talk to Susan at City Hall.

Susan said that she wanted to point one other thing out. There were some strong statements made about money disappearing. These are bond dollars. She can show you in an audited financial that there are no dollars that disappeared. When you assign a project, you have to designate a project when you issue bonds. If you don’t get to that project and there are dollars left over, they go back into the debt service fund to pay off future debt. These funds did not disappear.

P. Allen said that there is no backing to what you just said.

Susan said that there is a line item in the financial statements for those years.

Mayor Mitchell encouraged anyone with questions to go in and visit with Susan.

Old Business:

  1. Discussion of Pit Bull Ordinance – Travis Shelton, Chief of Police, said that the pit bull ordinance was adopted in 1987. There are two parts to this ordinance. The pit bull falls under our vicious dog ordinance. There is a section in registering a pit bull, which we no longer require. We do have a vicious dog ordinance but there are some challenges enforcing the pit bull ordinance. There are things we see today that we didn’t see in 1987 such as comfort dogs, therapy dogs, companion dogs, and service dogs. They all have different requirements as to what makes each one that. Our ordinance specifies any dog with the characteristics of a pit bull or the appearance is considered a pit bull. These breeds are banned in the City limits of Fort Scott. We do have the vicious dog ordinance. He suggested keeping the vicious dog ordinance so we can use that in Municipal Court. He said he checked into various cities and found the following. Iola lifted their ban about four years ago. They require if a dog is to be found vicious, they require a $250,000 insurance policy on it. Chanute still has a pit bull ordinance in effect similar to ours. Parsons is similar to Fort Scott’s, but were looking to change it at the beginning of spring but has not been approved yet. Nevada does not have a breed ban ordinance. Pittsburg does have a breed ban ordinance.

K. Allen asked Max Daly, Animal Control Officer, if he would be comfortable with just having the vicious dog ordinance and removing the pit bull section.

Max Daly said a dog can be vicious whether small or large. He will enforce whatever they decide.

L. Watts said she had invited Midge Grinstead, Senior State Director for Kansas Human Society to address the Commission.

Midge Grinstead informed the Commission that she has been in her position with the State for about 10 years and in the animal field about 32 years. She said that when you look at breed bans, it is not about the dog, but about the owner. She assisted the City of Lawrence with their vicious dog ordinance. She said again that it is not the dog, nor the breed, but the owner of the dog.

K. Allen moved to direct City Staff to change the current ordinance to remove the pit bull ban from the current City ordinance and amend the Vicious Dog ordinance. L. Watts seconded. All voted aye.

APPROVED TO DIRECT CITY STAFF TO CHANGE THE CURRENT DOG ORDINANCE TO REMOVE THE PIT BULL BAN FROM THE CURRENT CITY ORDINANCE AND AMEND THE VICIOUS DOG ORDINANCE.

  1. Update on Parks Advisory Board Ordinance – City Manager said that this ordinance updates the creation of a Parks Board which had been dormant for many years. City Clerk will send a notice out advertising for members for this board.

L. Watts moved to approve the Parks Board Ordinance No. 3565. K. Allen seconded. All voted aye.

APPROVED ORDINANCE NO. 3565 UPDATING ORDINANCE NO. 2713 AND 2717 WHICH CREATED A FORT SCOTT PARKS BOARD FOR THE CITY OF FORT SCOTT.

Appearances:

Alison Leach & Kristy Bowman – Proposal for Bridal Veil Park – Alison said that she had dropped off some packets for the Commission earlier this week. She wanted to introduce a proposal to take the west side of Bridal Veil Park and start a conservatory pollination habitat. There is a lot of funding available for this. More than 30% of our food relies on insect pollination. There has been a serious decline in bees and monarchs and that is some of the pollination they want to have at this site. The cost would be minimum for the first phase of this project. This would be the only project like this in Southeast Kansas. There are a lot of organizations that could be involved in this such as 4H, the Master Gardeners, etc. She would like to form a steering committee to start the planning process and come back in January so the Commission could see what this project will look like. It could become a great habitat that could enhance that area.

L. Watts made a motion for this group to move forward to form a steering committee for this conservatory pollination habitat project. J. Mitchell seconded. All voted aye.

APPROVED FOR THIS GROUP TO MOVE FORWARD TO FORM A STEERING COMMITTEE FOR THIS CONSERVATORY POLLINATION HABITAT PROJECT AT BRIDAL VEIL PARK.

Paul Martin – Community Christian Church – Halloween Alternative – Paul Martin, Family Minister, Community Christian Church, appeared to ask approval for an event they would like to have on October 31st, 2020. They usually have a Falloween event, which is a fall festival which included trick or treating and inflatables. Because of COVID, they have had to change their plans. They would like to sponsor a Halloween fireworks show for the community. The fireworks would be shot off from the outfield of Ty Cullor ballfield at Fort Scott Community College. He has received approval from the College. They have asked Dave Bruner and the F.S.F.D. to put out the “No Parking” and “Social Distancing” signs. He has asked Travis Shelton and the F.S.P.D. to be available to patrol and direct traffic if needed. They are planning to use Shaunn Pytlowany to shoot the fireworks which will be purchased from Premier Pyrotechnics Inc of Richland, Missouri.

The Commission thanked them for putting on this event for the community.

L. Watts moved to approve the Fireworks display on October 31st, 2020. K. Allen seconded. All voted aye.

APPROVED FIREWORKS DISPLAY BY COMMUNITY CHRISTIAN CHURCH ON OCTOBER 31ST, 2020.

Mark McCoy – Letter of Support for the 1% Sales Tax – Mark McCoy appeared before the Commission and said he was here to discuss the 1% Countywide sales tax that will appear on the November 3rd, 2020 election ballot. This tax will affect all seven of the cities in Bourbon County. In the County, 100% of the money is spent on hard surface on the roads. The City is having much discussion on how things are spent. He asked the City Commission to approve the 1% sales tax and that you will commit to apply 100% of this money to streets and roads as necessary. This tax is a renewable tax and will renew on June 30th, 2021. Negatives, if this tax is not passed, there will be no money in the County on the 600 miles to maintain. There are 78 miles to maintain in the City. He said there are actually six cities in Bourbon County: Redfield, Bronson, Mapleton, Uniontown, Fort Scott, and Bourbon County. Many of these cities have a very low budget and it would affect them adversely. He asked them to approve this important tax and state that those dollars would be used in your city for streets.

K. Allen asked what funds are brought into the City with this sales tax and where it goes.

Susan said currently it brings in about $750,000 into the City. $500,000 of that is transferred to the Street Department, which is about 67%, and another portion goes toward capital improvements, which could be a piece of equipment or a building needing repaired. This amount is roughly $250,000. The remainder is dispersed into the general fund which is a small amount.

K. Allen asked if we could say that 100% of this sales tax will go into the Street Department.

Susan said she would have to go in and rework the budget. There are other decisions to make now. There is $250,000 over the next two budget years where a scheduled transfer has been allocated and now that the charter ordinance has been repealed, that has to be cut out.

K. Allen said that people want to talk about streets and where the money is going. They want to see something for their money.

P. Allen said that back when we had a Street Department that functioned as maintenance, we did not have a street improvement program. The maintenance program was funded by the general fund. When the 1% City sales tax came about, it was for street improvements, not for maintenance. That was additional money to improve our streets – not maintenance. If you are looking at us making a choice to either dedicate it all to streets, he would say no. We need street improvements, but we don’t need to take the money we are using for maintenance and supplement it with this 1% sales tax. Street improvement is lacking and street maintenance. We have to get into a street improvement mode and dedicate a certain amount to it.

Mark McCoy said that the 1% should be spent on anything to do with streets. He doesn’t think that excessive funds should be used on new equipment.

L. Watts said she doesn’t know if we can make a 100% commitment without Susan being able to look at the budget now and having that information in front of us.

Mark McCoy asked what a realistic amount would be that you could commit. You don’t want to have to lay off people. This is the whole county.

Susan said that 67% of that budget is going towards streets. It is even worse than the $750,000. If the sales tax fails, you are still going to have to maintain streets. You are really cutting $1.25 million. There is no other place to cut unless we cut people.

P. Allen said that we are 30 days away from the vote. He is concerned about where that money is coming from and where it will be used and how are we ever going to get our streets improved and maintained.

Nate Stansberry, City Engineer, said he met with the Street Advisory Board last week. We need about $700,000 to $800,000 per year just to maintain street surfacing. This does not include personnel. Our mill levy has not increased for the past ten years. Sales tax has been left to cover the inflation costs. If you want a street improvement program, to vote down the sales tax would not suffice unless you cut other quality of life.

P. Allen asked what he would qualify as a street improvement program? Like the National Street program when it resurfaced 13 blocks? Are we going to have a street improvement program? A sewer replacement program? Where will we come up with money to fund these programs?

Susan said there are two sales taxes that are important. There is another sales tax coming due next April.

L. Watts said that if we make this decision now, we will have to make large sweeping cuts and will we be able to move the City forward. She asked if Kevin would look at a different amount to dedicate towards streets.

R. Nichols said that he is for the 1% sales tax, but he told Mark McCoy that he has put the Commission in an awkward position to say that you have to dedicate 100% towards streets when we have other obligations in this community that people need and want. Now we are negotiating, and we don’t know all of our budgetary needs. It makes it difficult to vote for a motion when he thought you were coming with a letter that says that we support the 1% sales tax. Now you come in and say we’re going to commit 100% of the money towards streets. We only have so much in our pod. Every time you take one segment of that money, you shrink another segment. He thinks we are pretty bare boned right now.

P. Allen said that we have 30 days and that’s it. On social media and talking to people, the public wants action. We have to sell it to the community. We have to show the people that we are willing to do this and come out and make a bold statement.

R. Nichols said that he doesn’t know tonight that we can commit a certain percentage without knowing all the budgetary constraints.

P. Allen said that we need to agree to the max. The people will decide. It doesn’t matter what we say. The people will make the call. He said he was willing to negotiate but we have to say what we’re going to do. He said that Mark has asked for 100% and we should give him that.

R. Nichols asked Susan what the maximum amount we could put in and not have budgetary demands that you can’t meet.

Susan said a good example is if you take the $250,000 amount. You would have to cut about $60,000 out of the police fund. It is one of the biggest funds. She would have to ask Travis if he could cut $60,000 out of his budget.

City Manager reminded the Commission that they will eventually have to approve any cuts that would be made.

Susan said since this sales tax does not go off until June 30, 2021, you are really talking about the following budget year. She said that 85% would be comfortable.

L. Watts asked if 90% would be acceptable. We need to compromise on this amount and what we are committing.

K. Allen said that we have to make a presence in this community with streets. He has asked for nine months to have street repairs made, and a stop sign straightened, and it has not happened yet.

Susan said that we are down three street employees currently. We have two employees and Chad.

R. Nichols asked what other quality of life issues would have to be cut? Before long we will be making roads to nowhere if we get rid of all of our other quality of life programs. He thinks there are other obligations besides streets. You could lose citizens without the quality of life programs.

City Manager said that he and Susan have discussed cuts. You could sell the golf course and not maintain LaRoche Stadium. It’s dangerous to make a commitment.

P. Allen said it is necessary to make a commitment.

Susan said in the general fund this is what you will have to cut. Public safety and that includes police, fire, dispatch, animal control. You would have to cut 4% out of each of those budgets and some of those budgets don’t have 4% to cut because they are wages. You would have to furlough people. You will have quality of life – airport, parks, LaRoche, aquatic center, Buck Run Community Center, and Memorial Hall. Memorial Hall is in desperate need of repairs. It is on the capital improvements for next year. We have a liability issue with the steps going into Memorial Hall. Codes enforcement is another way to cut. One of those ways is to cut demolition.

P. Allen said that anything we do today in the future can be changed. Any Commission at any time can change this.

Susan said her concern is to cut $250,000 out of everyone’s budget, which is 4% and now she needs to add another 4% onto that because she can’t do a transfer from sewer utility into general fund. You are really cutting $500,000 from the general fund.

P. Allen said he noticed in the capital program was the purchase of three new police cars. Do we really need that? It could be cut.

Travis Shelton said he has already cut two vehicles from next year’s budget.

Susan said you are cutting from now until forever. Our budget has been flat for many years. We are heavily dependent on sales tax. There is no new money being generated.

K. Allen asked if she could handle 90%.

Susan said she could do 90%.

Mark McCoy said he didn’t come here to put the Commission under any stress. He is here as a citizen. He knows it is not a thankful job, but a thankless job. The life of a City Manager is three to five years. He came here willing to negotiate. He has no strength, no power, no bonding. He has heard 80%, 85%, 90% and 95% and 100%. He said that the citizens want more. The most important thing is that the citizens should come away with a better understanding on how the funds are being spent. Bourbon County is a declining population in which 55% live in the City. He just wanted this presented to them.

Susan said that 85% would amount to about $112,000 in cuts. 90% would amount to $150,000.

K. Allen made a motion to dedicate 100% of the 1% sales tax to the Street Department. P. Allen seconded. K. Allen and P. Allen voted aye. R. Nichols, L. Watts, and J. Mitchell voted no. Motion denied 3-2.

DENIED A motion to dedicate 100% of the 1% sales tax to the Street Department.

K. Allen made a motion to dedicate 90% of the 1% Countywide sales tax to streets. L. Watts seconded. All voted aye.

APPROVED TO DEDICATE 90% OF THE 1% COUNTYWIDE SALES TAX TO STREETS IF APPROVED AT THE NOVEMBER ELECTION.

City Manager said that we are working hard to fill these open street positions.

Mark McCoy also said he also wanted to talk about Bourbon County Economic Development. This is just informational. This has gone forward and formed a committee. They will be hiring a director and this person will be employed and work for Bourbon County Economic Development. This will be a not for profit organization. This is modeled after Thrive Allen County where in the last ten years they have received over $9 million in grants. They are able to achieve these grants because they are an independent and not for profit entity. There has been a high recommendation to change the name of Bedco. This has left years of people thinking that they haven’t accomplished a lot. There is a board of eleven people and Steve Buerge is retiring from the Bedco board. They will be forming a committee of three people to hire the new Economic Development Director. The County has committed to eliminating their Economic Development Director. Allen County has one Economic Development Director for their county that is sourced through this organization. Economic development should happen at a County level and is best for all residents. Allen County will help establish this at no charge. This is about moving forward and sharing services.

New Business:

  1. Downtown Building Improvement Grant – Sharky’s – Rachel Pruitt, Economic Development Director, informed the Commission that grant funding for the remodel of Sharky’s Pub and Grub needs to be approved. The grant application was awarded in 2018, and due to several factors, the improvement project was delayed. Significant building improvements have been made including $35,0000 in solar panels. Sharky’s employs approximately 30 people. She asked approval for the amount of $9,378.50. This will be from the Economic Development fund. Dave Lipe is also here if you would like to hear from him.

Dave Lipe said that with help from Peerless, new windows were installed ascetically changing the building to an open air concept. The original bid was $55,000. This improvement has made a substantial investment in our community.

J. Mitchell moved to approve the Downtown Building Improvement Grant for Sharky’s in the amount of $9,378.50. L. Watts seconded. All voted aye.

approved the Downtown Building Improvement Grant for Sharky’s in the amount of $9,378.50.

  1. T. A. Grant and Resolution of Support – Allyson Turvey, Community Development/Tourism Manager, informed the Commission that she provided history and planning into this type of project in your packet. We are using priority projects from the PedNet plan that was done by the Bourbon County Healthy Action Team back in 2017 when it was adopted by the Commission. She worked with Jody Hoener at the County and looked for shovel ready projects. She is proposing the completion of the sidewalks on Margrave, and the addition of bike lanes on Margrave from the National Cemetery to 6th Street, across 6th Street and up National Avenue to 15th Street. There would also be a small addition of sidewalk on Shepherd Street by the Fort Scott Middle School. This will meet some overall objectives. This will increase walkability and bike-ability. This will create a great connection between our two national assets. It will also help with safety measures. We have a wonderful Safe Routes to School project that was done in 2014. This will help connect some missing links in those sidewalks. The City match of this grant is $83,000 with K.D.O.T. or 20%. She is researching other grants to make up the 20%. This is included in the capital outlay budget. She asked for approval of Resolution No. 15-2020 declaring the eligibility to apply for this grant.

R. Nichols moved to approve Resolution No. 15-2020 declaring the eligibility of the City of Fort Scott to submit an application to the Kansas Department of Transportation for use of Transportation alternatives program funds set forth by MAP-21 for the Fort Scott Kansas Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan for the Phase I PedNet Project in the City of Fort Scott and authorizing the Mayor to sign this application. J. Mitchell seconded. All voted aye.

approved Resolution No. 15-2020 declaring the eligibility of the City of Fort Scott to submit an application to the Kansas Department of Transportation for use of Transportation alternatives program funds set forth by MAP-21 for the Fort Scott Kansas Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan for the Phase I PedNet Project in the City of Fort Scott and authorizing the Mayor to sign this application.

  1. Approval to update CDBG-CV Grant Parameters – Allyson Turvey, Community Development/Tourism Manager, informed the Commission that this is to update them on the CDBG-CV Grant. Since June, the City was awarded $132,000. She asked for approval to update the CDBG-CV parameters to allow the submission of up to 120 days of working capital receipts.

R. Nichols moved to approve the grant parameter extension to 120 days. L. Watts seconded. P. Allen, R. Nichols, L. Watts and J. Mitchell voted aye. K. Allen abstained. Motion carried 4-1.

APPROVED TO EXTEND THE GRANT PARAMETER EXTENSION TO 120 DAYS FOR THE CDBG-CV GRANT.

Ally then asked for approval for the grant applications from H & L Transport in the amount of $2,500; Designing Edge Graphics in the amount of $2,500; Romax Electric in the amount of $2,500; and Reifschneider Chiropractic in the amount of $2,500.

L. Watts moved to approve the four grant applications be submitted to the State of Kansas. All voted aye.

APPROVED THE FOUR GRANT APPLICATIONS BE SUBMITTED TO THE STATE OF KANSAS.

  1. Approval to accept a grant from Fort Scott Area Community Foundation on behalf of Pioneer Kiwanis for a friendship swing – Susan Bancroft, Director of Finance, informed the Commission that Pioneer Kiwanis Club has requested the City partner with them in applying for a grant for a friendship swing for our parks. The City received notice that they were awarded this grant in the amount of $2,000. The grant just needs to be accepted.

The Fort Scott Fire Department was also awarded a grant from the Fort Scott Area Community Foundation in the amount of $2,500 to assist in funding the refurbishment of the Safety Trailer.

Susan asked for approval for both grant awards.

K. Allen moved to approve both grants. L. Watts seconded. All voted aye.

APPROVED FORT SCOTT AREA COMMUNITY FOUNDATION GRANTS ON BEHALF OF PIONEER KIWANIS FOR A FRIENDSHIP SWING IN THE PARKS FOR $2,000 AND THE FORT SCOTT FIRE DEPARTMENT IN THE AMOUNT OF $2,500 TOWARDS THE REFURBISHING OF THE SAFETY TRAILER.

  1. Recommendation from Lake Advisory Board to remove the sale of all City property at Lake Fort Scott – City Manager said that the Lake Advisory Board met on September 26th, 2020 along with three City Commissioners at the Airport. Their recommendation was to remove all City property at Lake Fort Scott until an overall plan for the Lake has been established.

K. Allen made a motion to remove the sale of all City property at Lake Fort Scott until an overall plan for smart growth can be established. J. Mitchell seconded. All voted aye.

approved to remove the sale of all City property at Lake Fort Scott until an overall plan for smart growth can be established.

  1. Recommendation from Lake Advisory Board to approve Ordinance No. 3566 amending terms of the Lake Advisory Board members – City Manager said that this board requested changes. The Commission asked him to read the new proposed section.

Section 2. Membership – Term. That said board shall consist of a minimum of seven (7) voting members, five (5) members who are residents of Lake Fort Scott equally representing each side of the lake – and each type of lake lot owner (Full-time resident, and Part-time resident), one City resident at large, and one Bourbon County resident, and acting as ex-officio’s, one (1) non-voting member representing the Fort Scott City Commission, and one (1) non-voting member representing the Bourbon County Commission, and a City employee for the City of Fort Scott. Said persons shall be appointed by the Governing Body and their term shall be for three years with no person to serve more than two consecutive terms, hereafter the approval of the chapter by the governing body. The expiration dates will be staggered so that four (4) members terms of office shall expire during the same year and the other remaining three (3) members terms of office shall expire the following year and continuing in this fashion thereafter. Vacancies shall be filled by appointment for the unexpired term only. Board members shall serve without pay. The terms will start in January of 2021.

K. Allen moved to approve Ordinance No. 3566. L. Watts seconded. All voted aye.

APPROVED ORDINANCE NO. 3566 AMENDING ORDINANCE NO. 3550, SECTION 2, MEMBERSHIP – TERMS OF THE LAKE FORT SCOTT ADVISORY BOARD.

City Manager said that he would like to address the property at 120 N. National. Paul Ballou has talked to Randy Vilela about the demolition of this structure. He asked the Commission to hold off on selling this property at this time.

K. Allen said that he would still like a soil test taken at this location.

City Manager said that there is other City property that could be sold.

L. Watts moved to remove the property for sale at 120 N. National at this time. R. Nichols seconded. All voted aye.

REMOVED THE PROPERTY FOR SALE AT 120 N. NATIONAL AVENUE AT THIS TIME.

  1. Recommendation from Lake Advisory Board to allow private buoys be placed in front of residences at Lake Fort Scott, but that the City purchase the buoys so they match what the State requires – City Manager said that currently we have enough buoys and they are where Kansas Wildlife and Parks wants them located.

L. Watts said that there are private owners that want to place a buoy in front of their property. There are boats going into the no wake zone and doing damage to personal docks. She feels like there needs to be a program for the property owner to purchase this through the City and then reimburse the City.

K. Allen said that there are 175 property owners at the Lake, but we don’t want 175 buoys out there. He thinks this should be discussed more with the Lake Advisory board and the residents.

Discussion was held regarding all the details regarding the buoys and was tabled at this time.

Reports and Comment:

  1. Director Reports:

Nate Stansberry, City Engineer: Nate gave the Commission an update on the Codes Department. Since September 1st, there have been 61 Weeds letters issued; 25 letters for nuisances; 33 letters for Inoperable Vehicles; and 13 citations; and 15 permits issued.

Consideration of recommendation from the Street Advisory Board to add two (2) additional laborers so additional manpower can assist with street maintenance – At the September 3rd, 2020 Street Advisory Board meeting, the board recommended to the City Commission to add two additional street laborers to the Street Department. Since then we have had three resignations.

Discussion was held regarding the wage and benefits that employees make.

Nate said that the Street department is working at the alleyway behind Union Lofts to cover all the utilities. They plan to concrete the alley.

K. Allen asked to see the numbers between concrete and asphalt at this location.

Cooper Street will not be accomplished this year due to the time frame and the limited staff.

Nate asked for the City to apply a reclamite product on National Avenue from 6th to 13th. He met with a contractor in Pittsburg. He asked for approval to solicit bids for this project.

R. Nichols moved to get bids for reclamite for National Avenue from 6th to 13th and that the cracks be sealed first. K. Allen seconded. All voted aye.

APPROVED TO GET BIDS FOR RECLAMITE FOR NATIONAL AVENUE FROM 6TH TO 13TH AND THAT THE CRACKS BE FILLED FIRST.

Flood Plain Permit Request from Greg Schick – Nate said that he is now the Flood Plain Administrator for the City. He has extended Greg Schick’s permit at 520 E. Wall until January 31st, 2021.

Susan Bancroft – Susan said that currently on our agenda we have listed all the projects over $10,000 and are split out under the Consent Agenda. If you want, they could be in the appropriations and shorten the agenda.

Water Utility Bills – Susan said that changes have been made in the last couple of months. They were being mailed out of house and this could save the City significant money. We are back to printing our bills again and mailing them out at our local post office. We had an issue with the bills being torn at the post office and that has been corrected. Also, there was an issue on some of the water reads and some people were billed too much and some not enough. That will be rectified with this next billing. This will save the City about $15,000.

Michael Mix – Update on Lake Intake Valves – Michael said he was here to update the Commission on the valve. He reminded them the primary purpose of the lake is for drinking water. There is a 24” valve at the Lake. When he tried to open the valve to take water out it was discovered the valve was damaged. They have been working diligently to get the valve repaired with divers going in the water.

  1. Commissioner Reports and Comments:

K. Allen – Kevin asked why the meeting was changed back to City Hall from Buck Run. He would like to see it held at Buck Run until the COVID pandemic is over to allow more people to attend.

K. Allen moved to change the City Commission meetings to Buck Run Community Center until the COVID pandemic is over. L. Watts seconded. K. Allen, P. Allen, L. Watts, and J. Mitchell voted aye. R. Nichols voted no. Motion carried 4-1.

APPROVED TO CHANGE THE CITY COMMISSION MEETINGS TO BUCK RUN COMMUNITY CENTER UNTIL THE COVID PANDEMIC IS OVER.

Kevin asked when the alcohol sales can begin on Sunday.

Diane Clay told him on October 23rd, 2020 unless a petition is received by the County Clerk.

Kevin thanked Pete Allen and all the volunteers who worked on the tennis court renovation.

Kevin asked the City Attorney again how much the Code of Ethics and Code of Procedures cost the taxpayers of Fort Scott.

Jeff Deane said that there was a total of 10.3 hours as best as he can determine totaling 22 pages which total approximately $1,800.00.

P. Allen – Pete discussed the condition of Main Street. Numerous street lights are not working, there is trash on Main Street, and cars being worked on.

Discussion was held regarding if the street lights had switches on them.

Max Fanning was present and said the switches can be turned off and on.

City Manager said that the lights are being worked on.

R. Nichols – Nothing to report.

L. Watts – Lindsey remarked that she is glad to see the City moving forward. She is proud of the volunteerism in this community.

J. Mitchell – Nothing to report.

  1. City Attorney Report and Comments: None

  1. City Manager Report and Comments: None

Executive Session:

L. Watts moved that the City Commission recess into Executive Session for the purpose of discussing litigation, claims, and other legal matters, pursuant to the attorney-client privilege exception in K.S.A. 75-4319(b)(2). The open meeting will resume in the Commission meeting room at City Hall at 10:20 p.m. R. Nichols seconded. K. Allen, R. Nichols, L. Watts, and J. Mitchell voted aye. P. Allen voted no. Motion carried 4-1 (Pete Allen did not attend). This included the City Commission and City Attorney.

Executive Session:

L. Watts moved that the City Commission recess into another Executive Session for the purpose of discussing litigation, claims, and other legal matters, pursuant to the attorney-client privilege exception in K.S.A. 75-4319(b)(2). The open meeting will resume in the Commission meeting room at City Hall at 10:41 p.m. R. Nichols seconded. All voted aye. This included the City Commission and City Attorney.

Adjournment:

L. Watts moved to adjourn the meeting at 10:43 p.m. J. Mitchell seconded. All voted aye.

ADJOURNED MEETING AT 10:43 P.M.

Respectfully submitted,

Diane K. Clay, MMC

City Clerk

FS Commission Agenda Nov. 3

NOTICE OF AND AGENDA FOR
MEETING OF
FORT SCOTT CITY COMMISSION
BUCK RUN COMMUNITY CENTER

COREY LARSEN GYMNASIUM

735 SCOTT AVENUE
NOVEMBER 3, 2020
6:00 P.M.

Call to Order

  1. Roll Call:

K. Allen P. Allen R. Nichols L. Watts J. Mitchell

II. Flag Salute:

  1. Invocation: Led by:

  2. Approval of Agenda:

  3. Proclamations/Recognitions:

  4. Consent Agenda:

  1. Approval of minutes of the regular meeting of October 20th, 2020, and special meeting of October 21st, 2020 and October 29th, 2020, and amended minutes of October 6th, 2020.

  1. Approval of Appropriation Ordinance 1274-A totaling $245,877.23.

  1. Certificate of Appropriateness – Alterations – 3 South Main – Unsung Heroes Park

  1. Certificate of Appropriateness – Signage – 102 S. National – Fort Scott Exploratorium

  1. Certificate of Appropriateness – Alterations – 13 S. National – E-3 Foundation

  1. Certificate of Appropriateness – Signage – 16 N. National – Sharky’s Pub & Grub

  1. Certificate of Appropriateness – Alterations/Signage – 23 S. Main – Main Street Gallery & Gifts

  1. Public Comment:

(Sign up required. Comments on any topic not on agenda and limited to five (5) minutes per person, at Commission discretion)

  1. Old Business:

  1. Two-hour parking in 100 block Main Street – Approval of final ordinance

  2. Consideration of update to Vicious/Dangerous Dog Ordinance with removal of Pit Bull ban – Approval of final ordinance

  3. Skitch’s Hauling & Excavation Invoice – Port-A-Potties – $2,461.50

  1. Appearances:

Lynette Westhoff – City Insurance

Crystal Mason – Front Door Real Estate

  1. New Business:

  1. Consideration of Conditional Use Permit – Cell Phone Tower at 910 Burke Street

  2. Consideration of Wastewater Treatment Plant Roof Bid
  3. Discussion of Charter Ordinance No. 31
  4. Consideration of Bids – Asphalt Pavement Crack Sealing
  5. Consideration of Bids – Emulsified Maltene Base Asphalt Rejuvenation

  6. Resolution of Project Sponsorship – Riverfront Authority

  7. Discussion of Interim City Manager position

  8. Discussion of search for new City Manager

XI. Reports and Comments:

A, Director Reports: Susan Bancroft –

Short term financing – Fire Truck

Golf Cart Lease Bid

B. Commissioners Reports and Comments:

C. City Attorney Reports and Comments:

D. Interim City Manager Reports and Comments:

XII. Executive Session – If requested, (please follow script in all motions for Executive Sessions)

XIII. Adjournment:

County Commission Meetings Now On Youtube

The Bourbon County Commission room, September 2018.

Bourbon County provides a service for those who wish to be in the know about the weekly commission meetings but do not wish to come in person due to the COVID-19 Pandemic.

A YouTube channel was set up by Shane Walker, the information technology director.

YouTube is a  video-sharing website on the internet.

“The (Bourbon County) YouTube channel is for nothing more than to broadcast the commission meetings during the pandemic,” Walker said.  “We have a small area for meetings.  It made sense to set it up so that citizens could view meetings without risk.”

” We are working hard to keep people safe and still allow us to do business for everyone and this is just another part of that effort,” he said.

YouTube will not be used election night because the system had to be taken down so that the Bourbon County Clerk could use the commission room for voting and election duties, he said.

“All Bourbon County employees have access, and can edit our web page and also our Facebook page,” Walker said.  “All of our department heads have this ability to put information out to the public.”

The unofficial November 3, 2020 General  Election results will be posted on the county website that evening when they have them, according to Kendell Mason, Bourbon County Clerk.

 

 

About the Bourbon County  Information Technology Department. taken from its’ website:

Walker is the Director of Information Technology

The office is located in the Bourbon County Courthouse, 210 S National Ave., Office 12, Fort Scott, KS 66701

Contact: 620-223-3800 X127 or email at
swalker@bourboncountyks.org

The Bourbon County Information Technology Department provides services to county departments to aid in the effective delivery of IT services that support the business needs of the county. County information technology is a vital part of the organization, providing faster and better ways for our employees to do their jobs and for our residents to access our services. They continue to keep technology current and to work with members and management of all departments to provide the computing capabilities that are needed.

Vision 
The vision is to enable each county department to better serve the public through the best and highest use of appropriate technology, using creative, progressive, and economical IT solutions with uncompromising quality, reliability, and efficiency.

Mission
To provide organizational and individual leadership in IT by researching, evaluating, planning, implementing, and supporting appropriate technologies, designed to assist county departments in accomplishing their visions and missions and to apply technology and best practices that make the delivery of government services affordable, efficient, accessible, and responsive to the citizens of Bourbon County.

Struggling To Pay Utilities?

Cold Weather Rule takes effect Sunday, November 1

TOPEKA – The Cold Weather Rule, designed to help Kansans who are behind on their utility payments avoid disconnection during the winter months, will begin on November 1 and remain in effect through March 31.

While the Cold Weather Rule is in effect, utility companies cannot disconnect a customer’s service when local temperatures are forecast to drop below 35 degrees within the following 48-hour period. The Kansas Corporation Commission, the agency that regulates public utilities in the state, implemented the rule in 1983 to prevent utility companies from disconnecting a customer’s natural gas or electric service during periods of extreme cold.

The Cold Weather Rule also requires utility companies to offer a 12-month payment plan to allow consumers to maintain or re-establish service. Any residential customer with a past due balance will qualify for payment arrangements; however, it is the customer’s responsibility to contact their gas or electric company to make those arrangements.

Payment plan terms to maintain or restore service require that customers agree to pay 1/12th of the total amount owed, 1/12th of the current bill, the full amount of any disconnection or reconnection fee, plus any applicable deposit to the utility. The remaining balance must be paid in equal payments over the next 11 months, in addition to the current monthly bill.

The Cold Weather Rule applies only to residential customers of electric and natural gas utility companies under the KCC’s jurisdiction. More information about the Cold Weather Rule is available on the Commission’s website (http://www.kcc.ks.gov/consumer-information/cold-weather-rule). Kansans may also contact their local utility company or the KCC’s Office of Public Affairs and Consumer Protection at (800) 662-0027.

 

 

COVID-19 Protective Equipment Distribution Program

Governor Laura Kelly Announces New KCDHH, DCF Visible Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Distribution Program

~Visible PPE Available to Deaf and Hard of Hearing Individuals, Their Family Members and Personal Caretakers~

TOPEKA – Governor Laura Kelly today announced that the Kansas Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (KCDHH), in collaboration with the Kansas Department for Children and Families, is making visible personal protective equipment (PPE) available to deaf and hard of hearing individuals, their family members, and/or personal caretakers.

“Since the pandemic began, my administration has prioritized ensuring that all Kansans have access to the resources they need to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and stay healthy,” Governor Kelly said. “I commend the Department of Children and Families and the Kansas Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing for making this program available to those who need it, and I encourage all eligible Kansans to apply.”

This visible PPE program, made possible through funding provided by the federal CARES Act, offers each individual the option of obtaining face shields or clear/smile masks (either adult or child size). All visible PPE’s are made with see-through materials to allow for lip-reading and non-verbal facial expressions.

“This visible PPE program fulfills a need of deaf and hard of hearing Kansans,” DCF Secretary Laura Howard said. “During the COVID-19 pandemic, with masks being essential for all individuals, making visible PPE available, affordable and accessible to the deaf and hard of hearing community is imperative.”

“Deaf and hard of hearing individuals rely on full facial expression and especially lips movement to get the full meaning of other person’s expressed messages,” Robert Cooper, KCDHH executive director, said. “Visible PPE is crucial to ensure successful communication with deaf and hard of hearing individuals.”

Each individual may request two items, and each household is limited to four face shields and/or total 10 PPE items. Consideration is on a first-come, first serve basis, while supplies last.

This program is only available to Kansas residents.

Anyone interested in requesting Visible PPE should use the online request form found here: http://bit.ly/KansasVisiblePPE.

KCDHH will use the email address listed on the request form (or phone if you do not have email) to contact you if there are further questions about eligibility or delivery information. Expect about two to four weeks for processing and/or distribution. If you have trouble using the form or have questions, please contact Megan.Essary@ks.gov​ or 785-368-8034; or VP 785-246-5077. ​

Halloween Guidelines In A Pandemic

KS Dept. of Health and Environment Guidance for Celebrating Halloween, September 2020

This document outlines guidance and considerations for celebrating Halloween during the COVID-19 pandemic. As typical Halloween celebrations do not allow for minimizing contact with non-household members, it is important to plan early and identify safer alternatives. Refer also to any specific city or county guidance in your community which may be more restrictive than what is outlined below.

Halloween Activities Not Recommended

• Gatherings, events, or parties with non-household members
• Carnivals, festivals, live entertainment, and haunted house attractions
• Door to door trick or treating – It is very difficult to maintain proper social distancing on porches and at front doors, ensure everyone (trick or treaters and residents of homes being visited) are properly wearing face coverings, and because food sharing is risky.
• “Trunk or treating” – It is difficult to avoid crowding and sharing food at such events.
• Traveling to a rural fall festival that is not in your community if you live in an area with community spread of COVID-19.

Recommended

• Online parties or contests (e.g., costume contests, pumpkin carving)
• Car parades
o Drive by events or contests where individuals dress up or decorate vehicles and drive by judges that are appropriately physically distanced
o Drive through events where individuals remain in vehicles and drive through an area with Halloween displays
o Drive in events where individuals receive a treat bag (with commercially packaged, non-perishable treats) or take away item from an organizer while the participants remain in their vehicle
• Halloween movie nights at drive in theaters
• Halloween themed meals at outdoor restaurants, complying with restaurant protocol
• Halloween themed art installations at an outdoor museum, complying with museum protocol
• Dressing up homes and yards with Halloween themed decorations

Personal Protection Measures

Regardless of how you celebrate, there are important recommendations for how to keep yourself and your household members safe.

• Correctly wear a cloth face covering to prevent disease spread when outside your home and around others who are not part of your household.
• Avoid confined spaces, including indoor spaces that don’t allow for easy distancing of at least 6-feet between you and others.
• Practice physical distancing – place at least 6-feet between yourself and other people who are not part of your household.
• Practice routine hand hygiene – wash your hands often, for at least 20 seconds with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
• Clean frequently touched items regularly.

Safer Trick or Treating and “Trunk or Treating”
Although KDHE does not recommend trick or treating or “Trunk or Treat” events as ways to celebrate Halloween, there are some recommendations and guidance to consider if you make these choices for yourself or members of your household.

• Correctly wear a cloth face covering to prevent disease spread when outside your home.
o Incorporate face coverings into costumes.
o Face coverings should not be worn by children younger than 2 years old, anyone who has trouble breathing, and anyone who is otherwise unable to remove their cloth face covering without assistance.
• Carry hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol and use at regular intervals while outside your home.
• Consider carrying sanitizing wipes to disinfect candy or other items accepted from homes. Or, sanitize items individually when you get home before consumption. Remember to also examine treats for choking hazards or tampering before eating them.
• Accept only commercially packaged, non-perishable items.
• Practice physical distancing.
o Always leave at least 6-feet of space between yourself and people not in your household.
o Do not crowd sidewalks, driveways, or porches.
o Wait until a porch or doorway is empty before approaching a home.
o Move aside on sidewalks and driveways to allow space between yourself and other trick or treaters.
o Keep a safe distance from cars – do not walk in the street.

• For “Trunk or Treat” events, follow all guidelines above while also considering:
o Maintain at least 6-feet of distance between yourself and other attendees as you walk around.
o Wait for others to depart a car/trunk before approaching. Do not congregate at a car/trunk with other attendees unless they are members of your household.
Guidance for Homes Accepting Trick or Treaters
• When answering the door or coming into contact with trick or treaters, correctly wear a cloth face covering.

• Wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds at regular intervals; hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol can be substituted if soap and water are not available.
• Regularly clean and sanitize frequently touched items such as door handles, door bells, and door knockers. Consider having sanitizing wipes by the door for quick access between trick or treaters.
• Distribute only commercially produced, non-perishable items to trick or treaters.
• Do not use “grab bowls”, where trick or treaters reach into a communal bowl to retrieve candy.
• Practice one-way trick or treating
o Consider spacing items 6-feet apart on your porch, in your yard or on a table in your driveway with a sign advising trick or treaters to “Take 1”. Watch from a safe distance and replenish items as needed.
o Alternatively, make individual goodie bags for trick or treaters to pick up as they walk by. If your home has a fence, consider hanging individual goodie bags on the fence for trick or treaters to take as they walk by.

• For “Trunk or Treat” events, also consider:
o Participating cars should be parked at least 6-feet apart.
o Make individual goodie bags and place them in your trunk so they are not touching. Maintain a distance of at least 6-feet from other attendees and replenish bags or items as needed.
o Carry hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol and use at regular intervals.
o Sanitize high-touch areas at regular intervals. Consider having sanitizing wipes on hand.
Halloween Parties
Although KDHE does not recommend hosting or attending parties as a way to celebrate Halloween, there are some recommendations and guidance to consider if you make this choice for yourself or members of your household.
• Remind potential guests who are sick or waiting on results of a COVID-19 test to stay home.
• Host activities with only people from your local area as much as possible.
• Correctly wear a cloth face covering around others who are not part of your household.
• Practice routine hand hygiene – wash your hands often, for at least 20 seconds with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
• Consider only hosting or attending parties hosted in large, outdoor spaces that allow for physical distancing of at least 6-feet between attendees. If an event must be hosted indoors, make sure the space is well-ventilated (for example, open windows and doors).
• Maintain at least 6-feet between yourself and people who are not members of your household, especially when cloth face coverings are removed for eating and drinking.

• When setting up tables and chairs, create individual seating areas of various sizes spaced 6-feet apart to be utilized by individual family or household units. Encourage guests to sit only with those who are members of their household, especially for eating and drinking when cloth face coverings will be removed.
• Avoid activities that require guests to be in close contact or to share items, such as games or food.
• Encourage guests to bring their own food and drinks.
• Limit people going in and out of areas where food is being prepared, such as kitchens or grills.
• Clean and disinfect commonly touched surfaces and any shared items between use when feasible.

General Halloween Health and Safety Tips

In addition to modifications to Halloween activities to reduce the spread of COVID-19, remember the following general Halloween health and safety tips to keep you and members of your household safe.
• Avoid trick or treating alone. Walk in groups or with a trusted adult.
• Fasten reflective tape to costumes and bags to help drivers see you.
• Examine all treats for choking hazards and tampering before eating them.
• Hold a flashlight while trick or treating to help you see and others see you.
• Walk, don’t run, from house to house.
• Look both ways before crossing the street. Use crosswalks whenever possible.
• Only walk on sidewalks whenever possible. Avoid walking in streets and roadways. If there is no sidewalk, walk along the far edge of the road facing traffic in order to stay safe.
• Wear well-fitting costumes to avoid blocked vision, trips, and falls.
• Eat only commercially produced, non-perishable treats. Avoid eating homemade treats made by strangers.
• Do not enter homes unless you are with a trusted adult.
• Only visit well-lit homes.
• Never accept rides from strangers.
• Never walk near candles or luminaries. Wear flame-resistant costumes.

References
1. Los Angeles County Department of Public Health. Guidance for Celebrating Halloween. Retrieved September 2020 from http://publichealth.lacounty.gov/media/coronavirus/docs/community/GuidanceHalloween.pdf.
2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Halloween Health and Safety Tips. Retrieved September 2020 from https://www.cdc.gov/family/halloween/index.htm.
3. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Personal and Social Activities. Retrieved September 2020 from https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/personal-social-activities.html#gatherings.

4. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Holiday Celebrations. Retrieved September 2020 from
https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/holidays.html.

Kelly’s Remarks on Unified COVID-19 Testing Strategy

Governor Laura Kelly Unified Testing Strategy Remarks

TOPEKA –  The following are Governor Laura Kelly’s full remarks from her COVID-19 Press Briefing on October 28, 2020, detailing the framework for the Unified Testing Strategy. Graphics from today’s press conference can be found here.

Good afternoon.

As you know, yesterday I brought together a bipartisan group of legislators to ask whether they would support my efforts to call a special session for emergency legislation to implement a statewide mask requirement.

I convened the meeting because, as we have discussed previously, case rates and hospitalizations are spiking in counties that opted out of my July mask order, and today Kansas surpassed 1,000 total COVID-19 deaths.

To put this into context: the state did not reach five hundred COVID deaths until September, roughly six months after the pandemic began. It took a little over six weeks for another 500 Kansans to die.

Yesterday’s call was productive, and I believe both sides were acting in what they felt were the best interests of the State of Kansas.

I began the conversation by asking Legislative leadership to reconvene in a special session to pass bi-partisan legislation to restore my ability to require mask wearing across Kansas.

In response, Republican leaders asked if – before calling a special session – I would consider a strategy of reaching out to local leaders to implement their own mask requirements.

I agreed, with the stipulation that Legislative leaders, in conjunction with their caucuses, reach out with me to county and city leadership, as well as stakeholder groups, and that we move as quickly as possible.

We can’t afford to wait another moment to begin this process.

I have directed my staff to put all our energy into this strategy.

However, if we are unable to convince communities to voluntarily implement a mask mandate, I will move expeditiously to find another way to implement a statewide mask requirement.

Now on to the numbers update.

Since Monday, Kansas has reported 3,369 positive COVID-19 cases and 31 new deaths.

This brings us to a total of 82,045 cases, 3,752 hospitalizations, and it is with deep sadness that I say we have reached 1,007 deaths.

I offer my sincere condolences to the family, friends, and loved ones of those who have succumbed to COVID-19.

In acknowledgement of their losses, today I ordered flags to be flown at half-staff statewide effective immediately until sundown, Friday, October 30, 2020.

Though case numbers I shared moments ago offer some insight into Kansas’ current pandemic response, they do not tell the full story of how the virus is moving through our state.

So, before I move into today’s announcement, I want to give a brief recap on what we have learned since my COVID update last Wednesday.

Last week, our state’s seven-day rolling average test positivity rate was 10.54% percent – which is just above the 10 percent threshold recommended to open schools and businesses.

On Monday, for the third week in a row, Kansas broke the record for the highest number of new cases of any reporting period at nearly 2,500 – which we broke again today at over 3,300.

Hospitals – particularly in our rural areas – continue to see increasing numbers of COVID-19 patients, putting a strain on bed capacity and staff.

Though case numbers in Kansas may be increasing, as always, there is still time to turn our virus response around.

We are learning more every day about the effectiveness of COVID-19 mitigation strategies and public health guidelines – especially mask use.

A study conducted by researchers at the University of Kansas found that counties with mask mandates have effectively stopped virus transmission from increasing.

Counties with no mandate have seen infection rates climb.

A report from the institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington showed that strict adherence to mask orders could save 130,000 American lives by the end of February. If not, United States death toll could reach 500,000 in that time.

It’s clear that until a vaccine is available and widely deployed, mask usage is one our most important strategies for keeping Kansas schools and businesses open.

But masks are just one piece.

We must also increase testing capacity, isolate those who test positive, identify those who have been in close contact, and communicate the importance of quarantining to keep our communities safe.

This brings me to the framework for our new Unified Testing Strategy.

Over the last four weeks, a team at the Kansas Department of Health and Environment – under the direction of Special Advisor to the Governor Marci Nielsen, PhD – has been working diligently to develop this strategy in a way that fits Kansas.

Broadly speaking, the new strategy identifies where Kansas currently stands, and paints a picture of where we need to go – and how we can get there.

To give some background:

Since the pandemic began, local and state public health departments have largely focused their efforts on testing only those who have symptoms of COVID-19, or testing in areas where outbreaks are occurring.

We have made great strides in improving outbreak response over the past several months.

However, to effectively locate the virus in our communities, keep Kansans safe, keep kids in school, and keep our businesses open, we must do more.

We need to expand testing to include regular screening for the virus before it spreads.

That’s what the new Unified Testing Strategy will allow us to do.

It will coordinate both public and private COVID-19 testing efforts across Kansas to allow for broader routine screening in places like schools and nursing homes, to stop community spread before it starts.

With the investment of SPARK funding which was recently competitively bid and will soon be announced, we can nearly double the amount of testing we are doing in Kansas by years end.

That will move us from a total of 600,000 COVID-19 tests to date, to more than one million by the end of 2020. We will also expand beyond the types of testing we are conducting from just diagnostic to screening and surveillance.

KDHE will be working with our partners in the private sector to expand labs and supplies, enhance data and reporting, provide support for isolation and quarantine, and increase our public communications about controlling the virus’ spread.

This is especially important for populations at high risk, but also for businesses across the state worried about keeping their workforces safe and their doors open.

A unified testing strategy will be resource intensive, but will help us to save lives and rebuild our economy.

The graph behind me visually demonstrates how this will work.

For those populations at the highest risk, located in the green section, state and local public health officials will continue to investigate outbreaks, but also regularly screen for the virus and isolate those who test positive.

For populations at medium risk, in the blue band, health officials will once again continue to investigate outbreaks but also use surveillance testing – which uses methods like testing wastewater for signs of COVID-19.

Through the new strategy we have also cast a wider net when it comes to accessing information and resources for our COVID-19 response.

If you recall, I recently announced that Kansas had joined the Rockefeller Foundation COVID-19 Testing Solutions Group.

Today I am pleased to report that Kansas is now part of collaborative effort funded by the National Institutes of Health to improve COVID-19 testing for underserved and vulnerable populations.

The University of Kansas Medical Center is one of 32 institutions across the United States that will focus on increased testing in populations disproportionately affected by the pandemic.

Referred to as the Rapid Acceleration of Diagnostics (RADx) initiative, 10 counties will be working with a KUMC research team to build a learning collaborative that will help support our most vulnerable populations and help inform the work of Kansas’ unified testing strategy.

I know that oftentimes when we think of testing, we may not consider the whole picture. We only think about the test itself and receiving the results on our phones afterward.

But there is so much more for our public health officials to consider.

We need comprehensive, accurate data that health officials can analyze to determine our most vulnerable populations or locations so that the state can respond accordingly.

We need access to labs that have sufficient testing capacity.

We need reliable transportation to move samples from health facilities to labs, where they can be tested for COVID-19.

The Unified Testing Strategy has all of that in mind, and more.

Through this approach we can work together with local health departments to analyze what we have, what we need, and how we can get it.

Last week I visited Salon Chemistry in Wichita to learn more about the owners’ COVID-19 mitigation strategies and commend them for their diligent efforts to keep Kansans safe.

While I was there, we talked about how hard it was for them when virus spread required my administration to close certain businesses last Spring.

At that time, our state did not have access to sufficient testing supplies or PPE to ensure customers and employees could stay safe.

We had little understanding of how the virus spreads, or how it manifested.

We have learned a lot over the past several months.

With that evolving knowledge and understanding, with a unified testing strategy, we can provide businesses like Salon Chemistry with absolute certainty that they will be able to continue operation this winter and beyond.

Adding the Unified Testing Strategy to our tool box, along with universal mask usage, social distancing, and avoidance of mass gatherings, we can contain this virus and give our scientists time to develop a vaccine that will allow us to resume our normal activities.

With that, I will take questions.

FS Special Meeting Oct. 29

There will be a Special Meeting of the Fort Scott City Commission held at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, October 29th, 2020. This meeting will be held to discuss the City’s insurance and the Interim City Manager position and City Manager search.

This meeting will be held at 123 S. Main Street in the City Commission meeting room. This meeting will be broadcast on the City’s You tube channel. This meeting is open to the public.

 

Flags At Half Mast for COVID 19 Deaths in Kansas

Governor Kelly Directs Flags be Flown at Half-staff to Honor 1,007 Kansans Who Lost their Lives to COVID-19

TOPEKA – Kansas surpassed 1,000 Kansas deaths due to COVID-19. In honor of the lives lost and the families they left behind, Governor Laura Kelly has directed that flags be lowered to half-staff throughout the state effective immediately to sundown, Friday, October 30, 2020.

“It is with deep sadness that I announce the passing of 1,007 Kansans who lost their lives to COVID-19,” Governor Laura Kelly said. “One of the many terrible impacts of this virus has been that families are unable to hold in-person services to mourn the passing of their loved ones. Each one of these Kansans was someone’s child, parent, or grandparent. They were part of a community. Today, I’m directing that flags be lowered to half-staff, so that we may honor and remember them.”

To receive email alerts when the governor orders flags to half-staff, please visit https://governor.kansas.gov/newsroom/kansas-flag-honors.