Centennial Ball Field Construction
The Newton Public Building Commission is scheduled to approve plans and specifications for the new fields and amenities next week. Then the project will be put out for bid so construction can begin in August to ensure seeding this fall and a spring growing season before play occurs next year. Exciting to see this long-awaited and requested community amenity now moving forward so quickly!
Painting of hangars C & D is substantially complete with touch-up and clean-up remaining. Taxiway E Reconstruction paving of phase 1 of the project will be complete tomorrow. The contractor will move directly to phase 2A following completion.
Fire/EMS had the privilege of hosting the National Fire Academy (NFA) 2-day class, Fire Safety Culture: Who Protects Firefighters from Firefighters, this week. This class is designed to help fire service personnel identify their present fire service safety culture, explain how culture drives safety behavior, identify risk management strategies, and develop a fire service safety culture intervention plan to reduce injury and death to firefighters in their respective organizations. In addition to several of our own members, fire service personnel from surrounding departments attended the class. The NFA only supports six direct delivery classes in Kansas annually. We are extremely proud to have the opportunity to host two of these classes this year, with the second class scheduled for August 2021.
We received notice this week that Fire/EMS has been awarded a $9,000 50/50 grant through the Kansas Forestry Service. Through this grant, the Forestry Service will match dollar for dollar up to $4,500 for monies spent. These funds will be used to purchase a new water tank, hose reel and additional hose for our wildland urban interface apparatus. Kudos to our budget support team for once again submitting a successful grant application.
In addition to hosting the two-day NFA class mentioned above, we hosted a two-day training for the Major Emergency Response Group (MERGe) covering topics on the National Incident Management System, Command and Control, equipment utilization and communications. This state-deployable asset is comprised of personnel from departments across the state. MERGe serves as an asset for communities to call upon, should they need assistance managing the medical branch during complex or potentially complex incidents. Harvey County utilized this group during the Excel incident, where they provided valuable assistance and much needed relief for incident command staff. However, it doesn’t have to be an “emergency” to utilize this asset. They have been called upon to assist with planning and staffing during the State Fair, Dam Music Festival in El Dorado, and Symphony in the Flint Hills on more than one occasion.
Fireworks sales start July 1and run through July 5. Discharge times are July 1-2 from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.; July 3-4 from 7 a.m. to midnight and July 5 from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. City Clerk Denise Duerksen reports we have issued 12 fireworks stand permits. That is a typical number for us.
Municipal Swimming Pool
Construction is moving along and remains on schedule for opening the end of July.
Beginning Monday, June 21, the 100 block of West Seventh Street will be closed from the alley to Poplar for repairs. Work is expected to take two weeks, weather permitting.
Wheatridge & Paddington earthwork and paving continue on the project. Windward Drive remains closed to thru traffic west of Orscheln due to roundabout construction. AT&T has multiple lines in the area that must be moved, and they are behind with the line relocations.
Southwest 14th & Old Main storm sewer will begin construction in July now that AT&T lines have been moved.
Sand Creek Station Golf Course
Although much discussion has occurred about play at the course this week, we are sad to report it has been determined that Brauer’s Tree on hole 2 must come down due to Dutch Elm Disease. The removal is scheduled for June 29-30. The tree is a bit legendary, and we are saddened by this loss.
Yard of the Year
Today is the last day to nominate great-looking Newton yards for the 2021 Yard of the Year award. You can nominate your favorite yards at www.newtonkansas.com/yard, at City Hall utility billing office or the Newton Public Library. Nominated yards will be judged based on appearance, creativity and overall condition, with extra points given for landscapes that require less water. The award recipient will be recognized by the City Commission at an upcoming meeting.
Community Partner News
Check out the latest updates on the upcoming Newton mural in this week’s edition of Harvey County Now. What a great addition to our community, honoring our history, leading up to our 150th anniversary celebration next year.
- 5:15 pm June 22 – Public Building Commission meeting
- 7 pm June 22 – City Commission meeting
- 5:30 pm July 1 – Public hearing on Kansas Public Wholesale Water Supply loan
- July 5 – City facilities closed for Independence Day
- 7:30 am July 8 – City Commission agenda review
- 7 pm July 13 – City Commission meeting
- 7:30 am July 22 – City Commission agenda review
- 7 pm July 27 – City Commission meeting
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