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Working together
City helping the Family Crisis Center a sign of cooperation
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 It was an unfortunate situation.

The Family Crisis Center’s Domestic and Sexual Violence Center stood to lose over $76,000, or about 10 percent of its budget, when state officials yanked a grant crucial its funding. FCC Director Laura Patzner the action was due to problems with Barton County’s 2013 audit originating in the Treasurer’s Office. 

She went before the Barton County Commission Monday morning to inform them of what had happened. Thanked commissioners for their continued support and said she wished things were different.

You see, since 2013, these funds were awarded to Barton County as the grantee and it passed through the funds to the center. The money paid for a full-time shelter advocate with fringe benefits and training, shelter food, supplies, maintenance, light repairs and utilities.

However, during a compliance review, concerns were noted about Barton County’s audit. As a result, the Kansas Housing Resources Corporation sent a letter stating it will not allocate funding for the 2016 grant year.

Enter the Great Bend City Council. Patzner was advised by the state that if she could find another governmental entity as a grantee, then she may still be able to receive the money.

So, she went to the council Monday night for help.

“These funds have allowed us to provide life skills, transportation, parenting support and other supportive services,” Patzner told the council. “The loss of these funds would be devastating to shelter services and to our agency. We have a very tight budget that cannot absorb this kind of loss making it necessary to eliminate a full-time position and reducing services.”

The City Council didn’t hesitate. It acted to become the new intermediary for the center’s grant.

Sure, there would be a little extra work involved for city officials, but all present realized the crucial nature of of the services the FCC offers.

It is sad that we even need the FCC, but it is good to know that our elected officials are willing to work together to help the agency.

Dale Hogg