Florence council considers partnership with Mid Kansas CAP

The Florence City Council tabled a request at its Nov. 19 meeting for city involvement in a housing project presented by Les Littlejohn of the Mid Kansas Community Action Program.

Littlejohn said he?d like to re-apply for a grant to build two houses to offer through an affordable housing program.

A first-time homebuyer program would allow income eligible applicants with good rental history and acceptable credit to buy the houses. Much of the loan could even be forgiven if the buyer lives in the house for 10 years.

Littlejohn said although the grant program had changed since the last application was made, still only a 25 percent funding match was required of the city.

The donation of the land at 6th and Barker, as well as city backhoe work and hookups, were estimated to be of sufficient value to meet the requirement.

The council tabled making an updated resolution supporting the project, citing a need for more information.

In other business, the council:

  • announced that the public hearing over the condemnation of the 1885 Hill School and the former high school building would be Dec. 3.

  • addressed some rumors about the building the school district has offered to sell to the city. Councilors reiterated that the city was not responsible for the building and has not even purchased it at this time.

    Although there was some speculation that the Marion County Special Education Cooperative might move from the building, councilors had no information about any official decisions.

  • will offer the old Christmas decorations to the City of Lehigh, provided Lehigh residents will pick them up. The large lighted decorations were used downtown before the current snowflake ornaments.

  • heard that Santa Claus will attend the lighting of the barbed-wire Christmas tree sculpture in the center of the intersection of Main and Fifth Streets at 5:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1.

  • accepted the high bid of $305 from Leonard Ellis to purchase the city?s red maintenance truck.

  • opened bids for the shelter house at Veterans Park that will be torn down by the PRIDE committee. Because the two bidders tied, both will be contacted.

  • approved renewal of the cereal malt beverage license for Johnson?s General Store.

  • considered several bids for different sizes of heating and cooling units and accepted the bid from Reliance Energy Partners.

  • heard that a chronic sewer problem between Fourth and Fifth streets on Doyle had been attributed to tree roots, plastic and rags in the pipe. The pipe was treated to help prevent further root growth.

  • approved purchase of a set of recapped tires for the trash truck, not to exceed $230 per tire.

  • heard that the Florence Fire Department?s keypad was not working properly and had needed to be replaced for $57. Members of the Fire Department will be invited to the Christmas Party planned for Dec. 9.

  • renewed the contract for yearly auditing at a cost of $5,200.

  • held a 15-minute executive session for personnel matters with no action taken when the public session resumed.

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