KVAY Maintains Current Studios, Local American Legion Being Revamped

2014 Lamar Logo.eps

KVAY Radio, at 224 South Main in Lamar, will not move into their property at 114 South Main Street, the former Main Cafe.  Debbie Ellis, station General Manager, told the Lamar City Council there has been a hold up on investor funding to continue developing the property into a new radio station.  “We intend to sell the building at its appraised value, so looking forward, strictly from a financial view only, then, the right thing to do is to stay where we are.” She explained.

Ellis praised the help given to the station by Shawna Hodge, Lamar Partnership Incorporated Executive Director.  Ellis said there already has been some demolition work done to the interior of the site.  “Right now, it’s a financially stronger property for sale than it had been originally,” she told councilman Oscar Riley when he asked about the sale potential.  Hodge said updated schematics are available for review for any interested buyers.  “Basically, it’s a ready-to-move-in building,” she added.  This past December, the Urban Redevelopment Board approved a grant for $71,804 to go towards improvement costs.  City Administrator, John Sutherland, said “This will come out as a wash, as none of the funding had exchanged hands at this point.”

Don Peters and Ronald O’Neal presented the Lamar City Council with a proclamation designating Tuesday, September 16, 2014, as “The American Legion Day” which was made official with the signature of Mayor Roger Stagner.  O’Neal, the commander of the local Post #56 provided some background, “It was former known as the Holly Post but when they asked me to come down and restart it because everyone there was WW2 veterans and everyone was over 93 years old.”  He said there’s been a name change and additional membership.  “We’ve got 25 new members this past year and we’re now known as the Prowers County Post.”  The goals, O’Neal said, were specific, “First we’re going to take care of the veterans and their families, and that being achieved, we want to help needy members in our community, starting with the kids and going on from there.”  O’Neal promised more involvement from the American Legion in the community. “We’re going to be doing some things that haven’t been done here in several years.”

The council approved a new agreement with Lamar Flying Service, LLC to provide Fixed Base Operator services at the Lamar Municipal Airport, operated by David Payne.  At the last agreement for the five year term, 2009, it was recommended that the contract be reviewed and rewritten as needed.  Both parties have agreed to those new upgrades.

The city-wide, fall clean-up day has been taken off the calendar for September 27. “The department heads and the council agrees there’s just too much on everyone’s plate right now to conduct the clean-up the way we want too,” said City Administrator Sutherland.  A tentative date has been mentioned for October 11 and the council will review schedules to make sure that meets approval.  “Also, we wouldn’t have the LCC Softball team with us on the 27th, and they have always been an outstanding set of volunteers every time we’ve held the clean-up,” he added.

A one year contract from the State of Colorado, Departments of Justice and Public Safety, to fund a new software purchase for the city’s police department, Prowers County Sheriff’s Department, Prowers Communications and the Town of Granada was approved during the council’s September 8 meeting.  Lamar Police Chief, Gary McCrea, explained the city will receive $232,677, 80% of the $290,846 applied for.  IGA’s for the other department’s share are being written for their 20% match portion of the grant.  The upgraded software will run the communications system.  “The package is expiring this year,” said McCrea, “and the vendor is requiring us to buy a whole new system.”  He added, “Part of the reason were we’re successful is because we combined with the other agencies for the one-time grant that runs through September 30 next year.”  Lamar Fire Chief Marshall Cook explained that because the fire department is not a law enforcement agency, it was not included in the grant application.  Chief McCrea said Sergeant Dave Reid from the police department was praised for the thoroughness of the grant application.

Administrator Sutherland said the city has signed off on the latest proposed franchise agreement with Charter Communication, LLC, the local cable service provider and the council approved the document.  It will be sent to Charter for the company’s approval for the new contract for ten years.  The current contract expires this month.

Following an executive session, the council approved a two year contract for City Administrator John Sutherland, through August 27, 2016.  Mayor Roger Stagner said the city is lucky to have the services of Sutherland as the vote for the contract and salary increase was unanimous by the council.  Sutherland said that he’s excited about all the preliminary work for local economic development in Lamar and looks forward to accomplishing some of those goals in the next two years.

By Russ Baldwin

Filed Under: BusinesscommunityEconomyFeaturedFire Department-RespondersLamarLaw EnforcementPublic SafetyRecreation


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