Pfeilsticker New Lamar City Administrator

Deputy city administrator Bill Pfeilsticker accepted the city administrator position, offered by the Lamar council during Monday night’s meeting, July 11.  The council voted unanimously to offer a contract to Pfeilsticker, who has been employed as deputy administrator since 2009.  Pfeilstiscker replaces Ron Stock, whose resignation took effect Friday, July 8.  Mayor Roger Stagner stated that thirty-seven candidates responded to the advertised position and Pfeilsticker was one of three selected for in-person interviews and a public meet-and-greet session at the Lamar Cultural Events Center this June.   According to city councilman and mayor pro tem, Skip Ruedeman, the contract acceptance will discontinue the position of deputy city administrator.

Pfeilsticker told the council and audience, “Thank you for this opportunity.  I will work to live up to the council’s standards and your expectations as city administrator. “Stagner suggested an official ‘meet and greet’ be held for the general public at the next city council meeting.  The mayor added, “Bill has done a wonderful job for the city in his past, it’s really amazing on what we have sitting here right now.” 

An ordinance was passed on second reading, which will present to Lamar voters, a choice to continue using the Lamar Ledger newspaper as an official publication for various city notices or cancel.  The alternative will have all such notices posted on the city’s new municipal website and physically posted at the city clerk’s office.  Regardless of the vote, the city will use the website for official notices.  A vote to discontinue using the newspaper will save the city an average of $300 per month for notices.  The city treasurer said earlier, that formatting some of the city information to the newspaper’s pages had become time-consuming and difficult. 

July 25 of this year was chosen as the date for two public hearings regarding special use permits.  The Buzzard’s Roost at West Hickory and North Main Street in Lamar, applied for a temporary modification of premise application for their annual “Road Jam” music festival, scheduled this year for September 17 and 18.  The event features several regional bands that perform outdoors adjacent to the Roost.  The second hearing will be held for an application from the Fraternal Order of Eagles #3898 Lodge on South Main Street.  Their event is a public fish fry which will be hosted from 9am to midnight on August 6 of the year. 

Lamar’s levees are in need of upgrades, according to a regional engineering mapping report prepared for FEMA.  Bobby Ward, Chief Building Official for the city, attended a meeting in June at the Prowers County Courthouse that outlined the state of the levee system in the county.  Ward reported to the city council Monday night, that the findings showed some of Lamar’s levees are not in compliance with the National Flood Insurance Program and need to be upgraded to receive insurance accreditation.  If not, those portions of the city in the flood plain would be required to purchase flood insurance, and the new classification would affect future business development in the community and impact the Urban Renewal District.  Also noted was the safety concern to Lamar’s residents resulting from a significant flood.  During the June meeting, Ward asked the project engineer what the cost of compliance for Lamar could be, and what forms of funding are available to pay for the cost.  Lamar’s share of the most recent study is $15,000.  Ward said the general guidelines provide for a three year improvement project at which time the results of a new study would be forwarded to FEMA.  He said he’ll check with Mary Root, Prowers County Land Use Administrator who is checking into potential grant funding for the project.  The levees in question run north and east from opposite the municipal swimming pool, extending a quarter of a mile.  Ward said the study found the levees in some places are as much as three to five feet short of regulated height. 

Most of the council’s work session concerned the mechanics of developing a tourism oriented marketing district for a select portion of the city.  City attorney Garth Nieschburg explained that the tax area would be confined to only twelve motels within the Lamar city limits and the taxes would be levied only on those persons renting a room at the motel, very similar to the current 2% Lodging Tax.  The proposed marketing district tax would be an additional 4% and would fund tourism oriented projects benefiting Lamar.  The city, not the county, would be in charge of the funding.  A special election would be scheduled which will involve only those persons who are managers and residents of the motels.  The twelve motels within the city limits are:  Blue Spruce, Chek Inn, Cow Palace Inn, Days Inn, Golden Arrow, Holiday Inn Express, Holiday Motel, Lamar Super 8, Lamar Travelodge, Passport Inn, Stockmen’s Motor Inn and Third Street B & B.  A petition must first be circulated among the motel owners, and the assessed valuation of all the commercial real property located within the proposed district must be noted.  That pertains only to those motels noted earlier, or fewer depending on their commercial value.  Nieschburg felt the required bond to cover the costs of the special election could be waived by the council.

By Russ Baldwin

Filed Under: BusinessCitycommunityEconomyFeaturedLamarTourism


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