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Feds, state pony up for ice storm damage
Zoo gets clean report from USDA
new deh city update zoo pic web
Great Bends Brit Spaugh Zoo underwent a USDA inspection recently and received a clean bill of health. - photo by Tribune file photo

 Great Bend City Clerk Shawna Schafer has received a $113,543.75 check from the Federal Emergency Management Agency and a check from the State of Kansas in the amount of $13,393.59 for reimbursements for our clean-up work for the ice storm that happened in January, City Administrator Howard Partington told the City Council Wednesday night. 

“(Public Works Director) Charlie Suchy, (Public Lands Director) Scott Keeler and their employees did much of the work related to the clean-up from that storm,” Partington said. In addition, “(Barton County) Emergency Preparedness Coordinator Amy Miller provided guidance in bringing the possible assistance.”

The council offered a round of applause for Schafer, Suchy, Keeler, Miller, and all the staffs involved. “We thank you for your efforts,” Partington said.

Also, Partington said it was Schafer who wouldn’t give up on getting these reimbursements. “Shawna wasn’t going to let this money slip away from us.”

In another, unrelated bit of good news, a representative of the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service division of the United States Department of Agriculture conducted an unannounced routine inspection of the Great Bend Brit Spaugh Zoo on June 27, Partington said. Zoo Supervisor Sara Hamlin indicated the inspection determined that there were “No non-compliant items identified during this inspection.

“This is great news for our zoo,” he said.

These items were part of the administrator’s departmental update. Other highlights included:

Fire/EMS/Inspection/Code Enforcement

• Bid requests were sent out for a new ambulance. 

• 94 roofing permits have been issued from June 19-29. These numbers are still resulting from the May 16 storm.


• The Department responded to the Days Inn on 10th Street at about 11:15 p.m. Tuesday in reference to a person who was shot. The investigation is ongoing.

• Officers dealt with numerous holiday related calls last night at the same time as the gunshot. 

• On June 26, Chief Cliff Couch met with Alicia Landrum. Landrum is a counselor who will be conducting a Batterer’s Intervention Program in Great Bend.

• On June 26, Taylor Reed started his employment with the Police Department. He spent a week in classroom orientation, and has spent the last several days starting on his Field Training Program requirements. He’ll continue that until he leaves for the Law Enforcement Academy.

• On June 29, the department conducted another Tryout Day for new officers. Of all the applicants, a handful made it through the process and the department is currently conducting in-depth background checks.

Public Works

• Finished the street repair at Broadway Avenue and McKinley Street west of McKinley on both east and west bound lanes at that intersection.

• Excavation will be stating soon at 10th and Hubbard on the south side of 10th Street replacing 90 feet of storm sewer and both storm boxes. This should start sometime this week and take a couple weeks. 

• Repairing storm drain at Frey Street and Park Street on the southwest corner of Frey.

Public Lands

• The park department posted the colors at Veterans Memorial Park for the 4th of July and many people took note of the patriotic activity of displaying our American flag. Dale Hogg snapped a photo and placed it on the front page of the Tribune. KSN used a picture as their picture of the day. We wish to honor the veterans of our great nation. 


• Summer Sidewalk Sale is set for Saturday July 22, over 30 stores are participating in this year’s sale. 

• The fifth-annual Party in the Park is set for Aug. 12, and the city is looking for people and businesses to enter into the new wet/dry parade. 

• The annual budget work session will be held next Monday at 6:00 p.m. here in the city council chambers.