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An expensive proposition
Replacing Vets Park ball field lights cost prohibitive
new deh council replat-light pic web
The light poles tower above Al Burns Field at Veterans Memorial Park Tuesday afternoon. The light poles at this and other fields at Vets are showing their age but are costly to replace. - photo by DALE HOGG Great Bend Tribune

City council retains law firm

Following a 15-minute executive session Monday Night, the Great Bend City Council emerged and voted to retain the Wichita law firm McDonald Tinker. It was Councilwoman Allen Owen who made the motion, stating the firm would “help with employment issues facing the city.”
However, there was not other elaboration.

The City of Great Bend’s on-call engineering firm Professional Engineering Consultants of Wichita will discontinue its study of ball field lighting for Veterans Memorial Park after the City Council Monday night authorized Mayor Mike Allison to sign the agreement with PEC ending its involvement in the project.
It was found that replacing the field lighting for three fields and the tennis courts would be over $900,000, so the city staff felt that it is best to work on what is already in place instead of replacement. This agreement would mean that no further payments would be made to PEC for this project, City Administrator Howard Partington said.
The matter first arose when PEC was asked to study the structural integrity of the poles, Golka said. It was determined that due to the age of the structures, the integrity of several had been compromised.
With safety being a concern, PEC’s Josh Golka said city personnel have reinforced the poles. Also, a policy has been implemented that if the wind speeds reach 35 miles per hour, any events at the fields will be canceled.
In other business Monday night, the City Council:
• Approved a replat of the Amber Meadows subdivision to help improve water drainage issues in the area and to rearrange lots to accommodate the types of homes that have been developed in the area. The Great Bend Planning Commission has held a hearing on the proposal and has recommended approval of the replat. The only persons attending the hearing were not opposed to the replat but were only interested in the design and size of the lots in the replatted area.
Golka said the plan also includes storm water ponds that will collect water and filter it before if flows into Veterans Memorial Lake. The ponds will also be an attractive feature.
The improvements have the added benefit of improving traffic flow in the subdivision, as well as safety.
• Adopted a resolution setting a public hearing date for the unsafe and dangerous structure at 1217 Madison Street. It will take place at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Aug. 7,at the City Council meeting held at the City Office, 1209 Williams.
Code Enforcement Officer Stuart Baker said the structure was severely damaged by a fire in February and has not been repaired. Repeated communications with the owner and landlord have gotten the city nowhere.
Incidentally, the people who lived in the home were evicted the day before the fire.
• Authorized Mayor Mike Allison to sign change order number three for a decrease of $525 for the band shell project.
• Approved abatements at: 237 Chestnut St., accumulation of refuse, owned by Carl L. Whiting I Kathy Beasley; 0 2nd St.(2nd & Walnut), accumulation of refuse, owned by Mary E. Johnson; 2018 Holland St., accumulation of refuse, owned by Robert Lessor; 1022 Jefferson St., accumulation of refuse, owned by Mary R. Baxter; 210 Baker Ave., accumulation of refuse, owned by Alfredo B. Chavez; 133 Maple St., accumulation of refuse, owned by Sophia Nelsonl; and 109 Maple St., accumulation of refuse, owned by Baudilio Hernandez.