Hillsboro city to subsidize welding program

The Hillsboro City Council decided at a special meeting Friday, June 20, to subsidize an effort to bring a welding-training program to the community.

The council agreed to spend up to $40,000 to make renovations at the former AMPI building, which the city owns, primarily to install the ventilation system required for a welding program.

The program is being initiated by Butler County Com?munity College, according to Mayor Delores Dalke, at the request of local trailer manufacturers who need additional employees to reach production goals.

Dalke said Butler officials had thought they had secured $200,000 in grant money?enough to pay for the start-up. But officials recently discovered the state grant was for not more than $100,000.

Dalke said a subsidy from the city would help get the program up and running in time for the new school year.

She said the Butler program includes a track for high school students, as well as ?fast track? for adults who want to advance themselves economically by training for what Dalke called ?some of the highest paying jobs? in Hillsboro.

Dalke said locating the school in the former AMPI building will benefit the city financially?beyond the potential employment boost for local industries. Butler will pay the city $500 a month to rent the space.

Dalke said the funds for what the ?economic development project? will come from the city?s capital-improvement budget.

June 17 action

At its regular meeting Tuesday, June 17, the council:

n approved an expenditure of about $8,000 to replace the 21-year-old phone system in city hall. The proposal from City Administrator Larry Paine was a scaled-back version of one he presented nine months ago that included off-site communication links with the police department, city shop and recreation department.

Paine said he hopes to implement the rest of the system in phases. The city?s contract is with The Phone Connection, a Salina company.

n approved the only bid submitted?$11,940 from Flaming?s Plumbing, Heating & Air Condition Inc.?to replace the air-conditiong system in the city offices. The old system stopped functioning the previous week.

n approved standard contracts with Reiss & Goodness Engineers for work on the drainage plan for the West Winds development and for the next round of improvements at the Hillsboro airport.

n heard a preliminary list of potential add-on projects and equipment acquisitions that could be included in the city?s current wastewater treatment project financed by USDA Rural Development.

Bids for the original lagoon project were low enough that funding should be available to include several other improvements, according to the project engineer.

n listened to Roger Hanna?ford III introduce himself as a Republican candidate for the District 70 seat in the Kansas House of Representatives.

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