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City vet contract renewed
Malone’s relationship with city, animals noted
mike malone  contract
Dr. Mike Malone is shown during a ceremony in June 2019 marking his 43 years as the veterinarian at the Great Bend-Brit Spaugh Zoo.

Highlighting his good report with city personnel, The Great Bend City Council Monday night approved renewing the city’s veterinarian service contract for 2024 with Dr. Mike Malone. This marked a continuation in services, and led to a discussion on how the agreement has been handled.

“It came to our attention that we have been approving a contract with our current vet for the last couple of years,” City Administrator Brandon Anderson sail. “When (it was) presented to (Assistant City Administrator Logan Burns) and I, we felt this is something that should be approved by council and should also be vetted through our procurement policy.”

After reviewing the procedure, because this is a specialized vet area and Malone has been doing this work and is properly listed on USDA records, it could be considered as a specialized service, he said. “I also reached out to another local vet and he said there may be some extra credentials needed, but that his vets could handle the work. 

“The one concern the second vet voiced is that our vet-client (animal) relationship was important to consider during this decision as well,” Anderson said. Melone has held the post for 43 years.

“To ensure we do not have a lapse in coverage and do what is in the best interest of the animals, I present to you this revamped vet contract for the next year,” Anderson said of the arrangement with Malone. “Dr. Malone works well with current staff and has done great work for the city and at times has exceeded expectations.”

But, “I think it is important that we discuss future plans with the current vet and if he does intend to retire,” Anderson said. He suggested meeting with Malone to figure out the best plan.

Anderson recommended a long-term arrangement and perhaps the city could bid out the services.

The contract calls for a monthly rate of $1,500, plus $150 per hour for services at Brit Spaugh Zoo.