In other business Monday night, the Great Bend City Council:
• Approved a motion to adopt the charter ordinance setting new dates for future city elections. Due to changes by the state Legislature, the city is required to hold city elections in the fall instead of the spring as in the past, City Attorney Bob Suelter said.
This means council members would have been up for reelection in April will now serve until January 2018, or another six months.
• Approved closing Main Street from 24th Street to 12th Street during the Holiday Parade from 5:15-6:30 p.m., and close Broadway Avenue to 12th Street for an additional two hours after the parade on Nov. 26. They also approved closing Lakin Avenue from 4-9 p.m. and bar parking on the north side of Lakin Avenue from noon to 9 p.m.
This was slightly different from years past due to the renovations taking place to the bandshell and the addition of the splash pad in Jack Kilby Square.
As a side note, due to the work, the skating rink will not be utilized this holiday season and there will be no skating.
• Approved a resolution establishing two accessible parking stalls on Jackson just north of 21st on the west side of the street for St. Mark Lutheran Church. When the street was repaved, the stall that was there was covered up. No record of a resolution authorizing the stall was found; therefore, this resolution would authorize street crews to paint the accessible lines on the new pavement.
• Approved setting the cost share for city health insurance for 2017 at 83 percent city and 17 percent employee. There were no changes in the plan.
• Howard Partington handed out copies of the League of Kansas Municipalities Legislative Policy for the council consideration at the next council meeting. The council may offer suggested additions such as a focus on fully funding the Kansas Department of Transportation. The state has siphoned money from KDOT, jeopardizing many road projects that are important to the city.
The policy covers topics to concentrate on during the upcoming legislative session.
Reluctantly, the Great Bend City Council Monday night accepted the resignation of City Clerk/Finance Director Amit Patel.
Council members jokingly said they weren’t going to approve his leaving, threatening to chain him to his desk. “You’ve done a real fine job for us,” Mayor Mike Allison said.
“It is with great difficulty and a heavy heart that I am writing to inform you that I have come to the decision to resign from my position as city clerk/finance director of Great Bend effective Nov. 25,” he said in a letter to City Administrator Howard Partington. “I have been fortunate to work with a motivated and talented group of professionals as well as a very supportive governing body.”
Patel, who is taking a hotel management position in Texas, went on to say he appreciated the opportunity for “professional development and challenging experience you gave me for the past three-plus years. I will cherish the friendships and relationships I have made in Great Bend. I wish the City all the best in the future. Great Bend will always hold a special place in my heart.”
Now, the process to replace Patel begins with a search committee including Partington, Allison and Councilwoman Allene Owen. The job will be posted internally for city employees first before being advertised more broadly.