Marion council approves shelterhouse for city park

The Marion City Council Monday approved building a new shelterhouse in Central Park with memorial funds for Mark Applegate designated by his family for that purpose.

City Administrator David Mayfield said the shelterhouse would be the first one for the north end of the park, setting northeast of the gazebo near the horseshoe pits. He said that would make it family friendly with close access to playground equipment.

With the family?s permission, Mayfield said he would put the $15,000 in memorial funds into the city?s capital improvement fund to use city non-tax status for the improvement.

He hopes to raise the remaining portion of the $19,820 building through a grant for wheelchair accessibility.

The council once more gave Davey Hett permission to conduct a fireworks display for New Year?s Eve downtown.

The council also approved a payment to his Hett Construc?tion Co. on the Cardie Oil Building in Batt Industrial Park for $56,380.

The council voted 5-0 to direct Police Chief Josh Whitwell to follow his own judgement in coordination with City Attorney Dan Baldwin on enforcing ordinances for trash cleanup with real estate owners reported with having unsightly property by proponents of a new walking trail on former railroad right-of-way.

Building Inspector Marty Fredrickson said Flaming Plumbing had already responded to a letter from Bald?win by picking up most trash on its property.

Al?s Home Repair had responded positively, he said, although health problems there have forced waiting for somebody to hire to do the work.

Schafers Plumbing hadn?t responded at all, Fredrickson said.

Whitwell, in giving a presentation of the police department to the council, said he tries to be more participatory as an officer with his men in providing guidance. He said he and his officers also developed a high trust level with kids in town by talking to them and getting to know them.

The council approved an employee pay increase of 1 to 4 percent based on job performance.

They approved Fredrickson?s reappointments of Leland Heidebrecht, Ralph Kreutziger and Roger Schwab to three years on the city?s planning and zoning commission, and the appointments of Judy Brunner for two years on the planning commission, and Andy Crofoot for one year on zoning appeals.

Public Works Director Harvey Sanders said Marion was able to send a two-man electrical crew and bucket truck to assist the city of Troy north of Topeka during last week?s ice storm. He explained how Marion has received help itself in the past, and will expect to provide help in the future.

Mayfield said the Kansas Department of Transportation will be considering a Community Development Block Grant for street improvements on Cedar and Eisenhower that could be more than $1 million.

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