By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Work progressing on 8th St. and area
City preparing for holiday season
new_deh_city update 8th st pic.jpg
The new stretch of Eighth Street connecting Grant and McKinley streets should be done by Nov. 20. - photo by Dale Hogg

The bid letting for the 10th and Grant intersection remodeling project through Kansas Department of Transportation will take place this month, Great Bend City Administrator Kendal Francis told the City Council Monday night. Work is tentatively set for next spring. 

However, that project is the cart. The horse that must come first is the improvement of the new stretch of Eighth Street between Grant and McKinley. 

Contractor Venture Corporation of Great Bend has a substantial completion date of Nov. 13 and final completion date of Nov. 20. The Ellsworth engineering firm of Kirkham-Michael is handling the inspection. 

Francis said this work must be coordinated with the water line and sanitary sewer extension. The city’s on-call engineering firm, Professional Engineering Consultants of Wichita, is handling the design. Additional survey work was completed on Sept. 21. 

The final plans for the water and sewer portions were submitted for Kansas Department of Health and Environment review and approval on Sept. 28. 

The information on the meeting was part of Francis’ newsletter he presented Monday night to the council. Other highlights included:


• The F&E Collectors Auto Auction is Saturday, Oct. 6, at the Great Bend Expo I and II Buildings. Admission is $5, doors open at 8 a.m. and Automobilia auction starts at 10 a.m.

• Staff is gearing up for Zoo Boo, Oct. 27 at Great Bend Brit Spaugh Zoo. 

• The holidays are fast approaching and Community Coordinator Christina Hayes and staff are putting together the holiday calendar that will hopefully be printed and ready to distribute for November’s Explore Great Bend effort.

• The Convention and Visitors Bureau Staff represented Great Bend at the State Fair to promote Mega Motor weekend. Staff personally spoke with over 1,200 people about the events. 

Human Resources

• Current openings include:

- Crossing guard – part time

- Engineering technician/assistant city engineer (although this job may soon be filled)

- Firefighter

- Police officer

• On Sept. 13, the city held a defensive driving class at the Great Bend Events Center and had 70 city employees attend the training. 

Public Lands

• Improvements were made to the disc golf course at Veterans Memorial Park and will be completed early this month.

• Repairs to the Christmas lights are ongoing.

• Performing fall maintenance on ball fields.

• Still mowing extensively as a result of late season rains.

• Spraying, over-seeding, fertilizing irrigated turf.

• Completed remodeling at Fire Station No. 1. City employee Richard Bodine helped with the project. 

• Supported the Mega Motor Weekend


Public Works

Property Maintenance Enforcement:

• 70 Complaints this month with 19 being citizen reported

- 20 complaints for trash/refuse

- 15 complaints for motor vehicles

- 33 complaints for overgrown vegetation

- No complaints were investigated and no violation found

• 36 Abatement notices sent out

• Four abatements performed

• 50 cases closed per citizen compliance

• 12 motor vehicles were brought into compliance

Street Department

• Began work on repairing a section of collapsed reinforced concrete box culvert at 18th Street and Baker Avenue intersection.

• Prepared for Mega Motor Weekend events.

• Repaired failing sections of the Great Bend Fairgrounds and Drag Strip in anticipation of the drag races.

• Performed miscellaneous sand alley base repairs throughout city.

• Street sweeper cleaned 88 city blocks.

• Performed cleanup operations following rain events to pick up limb debris and clean clogged drop inlets.

• Mowed various locations throughout the city as well as flood control dikes.

• Removed trees from the Lischeskey drainage ditch to clear water obstructions.

• Performed miscellaneous pothole patching throughout entire city.


• Waterline Improvements - Additional work at Airport and along Park from Frey to Holland being considered. 

• FY 2019 Resurfacing Program US-56 (10th Street) from Hickory to 1,300 feet west of Kiowa Road. Preliminary plans sent to city Sept. 21. 

• Crest Theater HVAC Improvements - AutoCAD files provided to asbestos remediation contractor; PEC to complete design documents and coordinate schedule with city staff.

Fire/EMS/Inspection/Code Enforcement

• The Fire Station No. 1 bedroom remodel project is almost complete. City employee Richard Bodine is to be commended for his work remodeling the bunk room. Utilizing City resources allowed us to save money on this project.

• The eight firefighters enrolled in advanced emergency medical technician class are beginning their field and hospital internships.

• Chief Luke McCormick and Assistant Public Works Director Simon Wiley attended Kansas Open Meetings Records course in Derby.

• McCormick attended the International Association of Arson Investigators’ live burn training in Hutchinson.

• B Shift is working on its skit that they will present to local students during Fire Prevention Week (Oct. 7-13). 

• ACM out of Wichita has completed the asbestos inspection on the Crest Theater. Now that samples have been collected they are working on the asbestos survey.

• PEC is working on plans to replace the HVAC system for the Crest Theater.

• Department Activity for Sept. 1-16 (2017 and 2018)

Fire Incidents – 22 and 11

EMS Incidents – 154 and 124

Carbon Monoxide Calls – one and 0

Average Response Time – four minutes and six seconds, and three minutes and 56 seconds

Average Turnout Time – 44 seconds and 40 seconds

Overlapping Calls – 27.27 percent and 20.74 percent

Year to Date Incidents – 1,720 and 1,661

• Code Enforcement

Four cases closed

Five new cases

33 total open cases

19 follow-ups completed


• Great Bend city officials and the Great Bend Police Department are seeking ideas on how they can work with the public to curb thefts, Francis said.

On Sept. 5, Francis and Chief of Police David Bailey attended the Theft Awareness Group meeting held at Perk’s Coffee Shop. “They spoke with a group of Great Bend citizens, where ideas were exchanged on how the citizens and police could work together to better manage neighborhood theft issues,” he said. 

At the conclusion of the meeting it was decided that fliers would be made to make others aware of the group’s goal. “GBPD strives to work alongside with the community to achieve common goals,” Francis said. 

Anyone with suggestions should contact Bailey at the police station, 620-793-4120. 

• On Sept. 5, Police Chief Bailey met with Vanessa Lewis at Trail Ridge Apartments and discussed Trail Ridge Apartment policies when law enforcement responds to their properties. 

• On Sept. 10, Great Bend Police officer Jason Blundell began his 14 weeks of training at the Kansas Law Enforcement Training Academy (KLETC). 

• Prepared for and assisted with GB Airfest. 

• On Sept. 22, officer Shane Becker submitted his resignation. Promotional testing to be conducted in near future to fill his supervisor position. Applicant testing to fill the open position set for Oct. 25. 

• During the month of September and into October, GBPD recognized their nine school crossing guards. This was completed by putting out a short bio on each crossing guard on GBPD Face book page to thank them for their work assisting our students in school cross walks to and from School’s safely. A different crossing guard was selected each week to high light that individual for their work. •  September Patrol Division stats:

 Criminal cases reported – 262

 Accident cases reported – 31

 Citations issued – 213

 Warrant arrests – 26

 Narcotics case – five

new_deh_city update 18th-baker pic.jpg
City crews are working to repair the collapsed reinforced concrete box culvert at 18th Street and Baker Avenue intersection. Baker at the intersection will be closed starting Monday, Oct. 8. It will reopen once repairs are completed. - photo by Dale Hogg