JCAPS interim director Mike Howell gives commissioners the many reasons he feels the organization is badly in need of funding. JCAPS is currently undergoing changes in an effort to better serve the children that must utilize its services. Daily Leader photo/Jessica Crawford
By JESSICA CRAWFORD
• Daily Leader
Representatives of local not-for-profit organizations gathered at Mid America Air Museum Thursday afternoon in an effort to convince the Liberal City Commission some public funding was necessary.
Fifteen organizations were represented with a total of $287,860 of city funding requested. From aid to animals to truancy prevention, career counselling for veterans to crime prevention for juveniles – all aspects of the City of Liberal had a voice.
Commissioner Larry Koochel questioned Jack Cooley of Tri-Agency Intervention Agency, which is currently trying to prevent and handle truancy in local school, as to why classes weren’t available for parents of such children.
“Sometimes I think we are working the wrong end of this deal,” Koochel said. “People have to be responsible for their actions. If everybody involved would just sit back and put themselves in these kids’ shoes. They go to school, and if they don’t excel in reading, writing and arithmetic, they are not interested, so they don’t go to school.
“I think we need something to keep these kids busy and give them some recognition,” he continued. “They’re not dumb, they are just ignored or don’t know what to do. Just throwing money at it is not the answer, I don’t think.”
Cooley encouraged commissioners to look into possibly incorporating such statutes. He added currently, by law, Tri-Agency Intervention Agency is only responsible to the children.
All not-for-profit funding requests will be considered Saturday morning during the city commission’s budget workshop, which starts at 8 a.m. at the Depot.