Discussion on Splash Pad cause tempers to flare
Perhaps due to feelings of frustration from the lengthy cemetery discussion or the news of snags in a construction project, tempers flared a bit near the conclusion of Monday’s meeting. Most visitors had left the meeting when City Manager Josh Shaw began discussion on the Splash Pad and drainage channel at Shryock Park. He explained that the discharge water from the Splash Pad can not be routed to the lake as planned.
“No action is needed tonight, but we now have to reconsider things and take a look at the cost and how to handle this,” Shaw said.
“I’m really pissed off about the Splash Pad. This needs to be discussed. There’s been a problem ever since it started...We got a price from Josh and now it’s changed. We’re jumping from one solution to another solution,” Councilman Tom Leffler said, “I’m not sure about dumping that much water into the sewer system. That’s 100,000 gallons on a daily basis.”
Shaw reminded Leffler that he was notified immediately upon the news of the changes and options were shared at the time.
Councilor David Bates asked, “What else can we do? We can’t dump it in the lake.”
Leffler responded, “We need to put thought into it and come up with a final solution.”
“So what are you suggesting? 1. Spend all that money on tablets to treat the water; 2. Dump into the sewer system; or 3. Shut the Splash Pad down?” asked Magruder.
Bates added, “It’s obvious we’re going to waste water and so is every town that has a splash pad.”
Councilor Justin Londagin proceeded to share his frustration, “I agree with Tom on this. It showed tonight with the cemetery- we just jump into something and here we’re back again. We push too fast. There’s too much going on...I’m still trying to get a speed bump on Main Street taken care of and I feel the frustration from our citizens...We just can’t keep throwing stuff at the wall.”
Councilor Magruder reminded Londagin about an incident months earlier concerning a rush to remove a city board member and appoint someone Londagin was supporting for the position. Mayor Matt Childers issued an apology at the next Council meeting concerning the “rushed” board appointment approval.
Londagin responded to Magruder, “I never said his name. The name was never spoken until the mayor gave a 5 minute apology at the next meeting!”
“We need to calm down. Sometimes we don’t get it right. We may have done something in a hurry,” began Mayor Rawlings.
“We need to just slow down. The Splash Pad is obviously a headache. We will come up with solutions. We can slow down,” Councilor Bates said.
Steering conversation into a different direction and attempting to lighten the mood, Mayor Rawlings offered, “I really do want to thank the Street Department for recently fixing two potholes.”
Council approved a request from Augusta Head Start to provide various city vehicles for a pre-school mini car show held this week.
Andy Hall representing Augusta Little League Baseball presented a request to use the Garvin Park Baseball diamonds and concession stand for the Dalton Palmer Memorial Invitational Tournament on June 22-23.
Hall explained that the tournament has been held in April before, but this year it was cancelled due to construction at the park. Apparently, interest from the community prompted the league to add the tournament now.
Council approved the request. Hall presented a signed baseball bat to the Council and thanked them for continued support for Little League Baseball.
Also approved was a request from Don and Monica McClure, of Flatwater Fitness & Fun, for permission to utilize Santa Fe Lake for a Paddle 2 Gravel Adventure Race on Sept. 15, 2018.
The race is a triathlon event that is planned to take place on the north shore of SFL and will include stand up paddle boarding, gravel biking and trail running.
The request was returning to Council with more details regarding the event and a safety plan.
“I appreciate all of your hard work on this safety plan,” stated Councilor Cale Magruder.
Public hearings set
Resolution No. 2018-15 setting the time and date for a public hearing to take place regarding the condemnation and repair or demolition of a single-family residential structure at 432 E. Broadway, was approved to take place at 7 p.m. Monday, Aug. 6, 2018.
Resolution No. 2018-16 setting the time and date for a public hearing regarding the condemnation and repair or demolition of a detached garage structure at 432 E. Broadway, was also approved to take place the same night.
Earlier this month, Councilman Magruder opened discussion concerning boating regulations for Augusta City Lake. It was acknowledged that non-residents are allowed to boat on Santa Fe Lake with a higher annual fee than Augusta residents, however, boating on the City Lake is currently open to residents living within the city limits and Augusta Township.
Councilors shared input from local anglers and residents whether to expand boat privileges to residents within the Growth Area, or expand boating privileges to all Butler County residents. Council approved to charge a boat permit fee for Augusta City Lake of $100 to all non-city of Augusta residents of Butler County, limited to the first 25 for 2018.
An amended ordinance (Ordinance No. 2133, Section 12-305) was presented for approval Monday night.
The amended section reads: “BOATS; PERMITTED, RESTRICTIONS. All boats of any type or nature shall be permitted on Lake Augusta-Garvin Park except that sailboats shall not exceed 16 feet in length and powered boats of any type shall not have on board a motor or means of propulsion greater than 10 horsepower. All rubber rafts, houseboats or other boats with toilet facilities shall be prohibited. Such boating privileges shall be confined to the citizens of the City of Augusta and Butler County, Kansas, subject to fees and regulations established by the governing body.”
The boat permit fee of $5 for Augusta city residents won’t change. Revenue generated from the issuance of boat permit fees will be directed to Fund 6 - Special Parks Fund to provide additional funding to maintain the City Lake.
• The public is reminded to attend the meeting scheduled for 6 p.m. Monday, June 25, at City Hall to discuss enforcement of Cemetery rules and regulations.