The City of Salina and Saline County have reached an agreement on the use of the Saline County Livestock and Exp Center.
County Commission Chairman Bob Vidricksen made an announcement at the county’s regularly scheduled Tuesday meeting. He noted the County received a letter from the City in regards to the Expo Center Lease and the improvements that the City asked to have accomplished. Vidricksen said was pleased to announce that with some minor clarifications, the County Commission was accepting of the City’s proposal. The City’s legal counsel will be working to draft an appropriate lease for the County’s further consideration.
At issue are the aging facilities which comprise the livestock and expo center, which is located on Kenwood Drive, across the street from the Tony’s Pizza Events Center. The city owns the property. The county owns the facilities on the property. The county is operating the facilities on a series of one-year leases, following the expiration of a long-term lease. County Commissioners would like a new 40-year-lease, while the city proposed a 25-year-lease which would be followed by three 5-year-leases. At a joint meeting in December the two governing bodies appeared to generally accept a compromise of the possibility instead of a new 30-year-lease.
As part of the agreement the city is requesting that the county perform some maintenance and improvements on the existing properties, including buildings, barns, and the parking area. The goal is to have the expo center facilities blend in aesthetically with the neighboring Tony’s Pizza Events Center.
Other highlights from Tuesday’s meeting:
- Commissioners approved a facility use agreement with Hermes Healthcare for their continued use of the Senior Center in providing foot care services.
- Commissioners signed a resolution adopting the Regional Hazard Mitigation Plan. This plan covers twelve counties in the North Central Region and outlines the most probably natural and manmade disasters that could occur in the area. By adoption of this plan, Saline County will be eligible to apply for grants that specifically cover mitigation projects. This also allows for Saline County to become eligible to apply for Public Assistance dollars should a disaster occur.
- GIS presented a cost share agreement from the City of Salina for approval by the County Commission. This agreement allows for the City of Salina to pay $20,600 towards the cost of an aerial flight to enhance mapping capabilities in Salina and Saline County. The total cost of the flight and mapping software is $115,587 and several entities are providing funds to cover this cost including Road & Bridge, Noxious Weed, Saline County Appraiser, and use of Land Record Funds.
- Commissioner Vidricksen made an announcement and noted that the County received a letter from the City in regards to the Expo Center Lease and the improvements that the City asked to have accomplished. Commissioner Vidricksen was pleased to announce that with some minor clarifications, the County Commission was accepting of the City’s proposal. The City’s legal counsel will be working to draft an appropriate lease for the County’s further consideration.
- Rick Lamer, Livestock & Expo Center Director, provided his report. There were a total of 298 event days in 2019 that brought in a total of $91,927 in rental income. There are several upcoming events in March that will keep staff very busy including Equifest, the Carden Circus, and the Mid-America Farm Show.
- Commissioners approved a maintenance agreement with Hickman Environmental Service for bi-annual pump maintenance for Kipp Sewer District #1. With the approval of this agreement also brought a modification to the Wastewater Operator Agreement that adjusted monthly compensation for the current wastewater operator.
- The Oliver Hagg Memorial Scholarship is accepting applications. This scholarship is open to any high school graduating senior who resides in Saline County and will be entering college or vocational school in the fall that will be majoring in the agriculture field. Several $1,000 scholarships are available. For more information, or to obtain the application, visit: http://www.saline.org/departments/expo-center
- An optional distribution list has been added to the County website for those that are interested in staying up to date on the latest news of the Saline County Jail project. Interested individuals are encouraged to sign up to receive these updates by completing the online form found at: http://www.saline.org/2020-Jail-Project The next Town Hall Meeting on the Saline County Jail is scheduled for Thursday, February 27th starting at 6pm at the K-State Polytechnic Campus College Center building. March 19th is the last scheduled Town Hall meeting and it will be held at 6pm at Salina South High School in the student commons area.
- Renovations are underway at the Senior Center. Work started yesterday with demolition of the kitchen and restrooms on the 1st floor. The 1st floor will remain closed until the renovations are complete and no dining room service is being offered until then. Meals on Wheels has been relocated to an alternate facility to ensure continuity of that service. Renovations are expected to take 10 weeks.
- February 19th has been scheduled for the annual “Storm Fury on the Plains” presentation in partnership with the National Weather Service of Wichita, KS. This presentation will take place at Salina South High School Auditorium, 730 E. Magnolia Rd, and beginning at 6:30 pm. This is a free event to learn about basic severe weather safety, thunderstorm development, what to look for, and learn how to report information.