Lange returns as Marion city clerk

The Marion City Council unanimously approved terminating Marty Grill as city clerk during its meeting Jan. 10 and accepted the reinstatement of former city clerk Angela Lange, who resigned from that position seven months earlier.

Following a 20-minute executive session, the council returned to open session agreeing to bring Lange back effective Jan. 17.

City Administrator Doug Kjellin said he had a list of concerns regarding Grill, but that Grill asked to be terminated from his position as city clerk.

As part of her annual report on tourism and the recreation commission, Margo Yates talked about upcoming events, sesquicentennial activities and regional baseball.

In her discussion, she highlighted tourism activities in March, May, June, July, August, September, October, November and December.

Some of those included the John Waner Crappie Derby, Chingawassa Days, Afternoon Art and Music Stroll, bluegrass music, the garden tour, a two-day flea market, Midwest Regional Baseball Tournament, Art in the Park, Old Settler?s Day, the Free Flight of America contest, Midwest Polka Dance, a cemetery tour, textile exhibition and Christmas tours.

?We are also working on welcome bags and should be ready by the time campers come in March,? she said.

The annual recreation basketball tournament is underway with a total of 42 teams, 10 of those are local, she said.

?It is also the first time Hesston has had a team.?

In total, 115 regular season games will be played with the tournaments Feb. 5 and Feb. 12.

Softball and baseball will begin practices March 1, she said, and hoped the city would have the ballfields ready for play by the first of April.

Another big event, she said, is the Midwest Regional 12 & Under Baseball Tournament in July with teams coming from seven states.

The council, in other business:

? approved the purchase of a new Dodge Charger for the police department. The money will be taken from the equipment reserve budget and will cost $23,068. Chief of Police Josh Whitwell said he even though the Impala was the lower bid at $20,629, it didn?t offer the rear-wheel drive or comfort of the Charger. The other vehicle being considered was a Crown Victoria at $28,423. The council approved the purchase 3-2 with Mayor Mary Olson and Councilor Chris Meierhoff voting against.

? tabled a decision regarding Jim Heineke, former North Newton city administrator, as a training consultant. Councilor Steve Smith directed Kjellin to explore other options.

? agreed to a special meeting at 4:30 p.m. Jan. 17 to approve a consultant for the training retreat.

? discussed attending the Marion Airport Board?s annual meeting at 7 p.m. Jan. 18.

? approved paying APAC $125,897 for work on residential water lines. Kjellin said $71,463 would come from the community development block grant funds and $54,434 would be taken from the bond budget.

? asked Kjellin if anyone had been having problems with water lines in recent weeks. Olson said someone she talked to said the pressure was low. Kjellin said that was the first he had heard about that, but did say that if any residents were seeing discoloration in the lines to let water run and that should clear up any problems.

? went into executive session to discuss personnel with the police chief, assistant police chief and city administrator. No action was taken after returning to open session.

? requested an executive session to discuss personnel with the city administrator.

? approved the next regular council meeting for 4:30 p.m. Jan. 24.

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