The Great Bend City Council was told Monday night that the number of Convention and Visitors Bureau projects has grown steadily since the first of the year. That was when the city officially took over the operations of the CVB.
City and CVB staffs are working to recreate and design ads that promote the city, CVB, Events Center and attractions, City Administrator Howard Partington said. Another ad is being developed to promote lodging in Great Bend.
“The City is looking forward to the challenge,” Partington said. Officials were also excited about the hiring of Emily Goad as the new CVB director.
In a related matter, the first organizational meeting of the CVB Advisory Board was held on Jan. 22. “There was great participation from motel representatives, other members of the board and other agencies who are eager to work with the new CVB staff,” Partington said.
Councilwoman Allene Owen was elected the chairperson and Mark Mingenback was elected vice-chair. The next meeting will be at noon on March 19 at the Events Center.
The city remodeled the front office area of the Events Center to accommodate the CVB. Partington said the phones will be turned on Monday and they hope to have the office open then.
The CVB report was part of Partington’s upate on departmental activities. Other highlights included:
• Installed solar flashing red beacons for east- and west-bound traffic at 17th Street and K-96.
• Salted and sanded street January 21st and 22nd due to icy conditions.
• Sanitarian: 30 year to date complaints, 14 new complaints (three by citizens and 11 by staff), five complaints completed by citizens, one abatement notice sent and three vehicles brought into compliance.
• Held annual meeting with members of the four Townships Boards and signed contracts for 2016.
• Two captains are working with two Great Bend Police Department sergeants to develop a safer and better way to protect our personnel while working accidents.
• The Police Department is currently preparing to kick off their new Trading Card Program, which will hopefully create even more opportunities for officers to interact with children in the community.
• At the last council meeting, council members asked the Police Department to conduct extra traffic enforcement near the new apartment complex because of the illegal traffic behind the facility and extra patrol at Stone Lake due to the lights being shot out continually. Lt. Bill Browne, working with Barton County Dispatch, has created several new radio codes which will allow the department to more easily track this type of activity in the future.
• The engineering services selection committee has reviewed the proposals submitted by six engineering firms and have set up meetings with each of the six finalists. The committee is hoping to have an “on call” engineering firm selected in the near future.
This would be in lieu of hiring a city engineer. Although no decision has been made, Partington said this may be a direction the city wants to go.
• City staff has been putting together information so we will be able to bid out the heating and air replacement for the office portion of the Events Center. The bids
• The Retail Meeting was held Wednesday morning City Hall. Retailers and the Community Coordinator discussed promotional ideas and unification efforts to better help local business. Any ideas and all retail, groups or businesses can take part in this to keep on top of local adventures for sales and events in Great Bend.
• The city is currently creating new handouts and brochures for city attractions such as the Waterpark and Zoo. Community Coordinator Christina Hayes is also helping the Police Department develop a new and more interactive website.
• Jan Peters and Howard are continuing to work with Watco, Sherwood Construction, and KDOT on the details of the transload project.