Department finalizing where the funds will be spent, will be announced later
By JESSICA CRAWFORD
• Daily Leader
Liberal Police Chief Al Sill reported to the city commission Tuesday evening about a grant soon to be received from the U.S. Department of Justice. However, he said, details of where the funds will be allocated are yet to be announced.
“If you recall, we applied for a COPS Grant over a year ago,” Sill said. “We received a letter that we have been awarded that grant in the amount of $200,000 so we are right now in the process of going through the terms and conditions, then we will be signing a contract, as stated in the letter, within 90 days. I anticipate signing that contract within a week. So, I just wanted to announce to you that we will be receiving that money, but it probably won’t be available until later in the year. But it is guaranteed to us now at this point.”
When asked what the grant funds would be designated toward, Sill said he was not at liberty to divulge that information, however, such an announcement will be given soon.
“Part of the terms and conditions is that we supply the COPS Grants personnel with all reports prior to publicizing the intended purpose of the grant,” he said. “We will be making a public notification soon.”
The grant was approved as a result of Sill’s recent efforts during a trip to the nation’s capitol. Commissioners and City Manager Mark Hall commended Sill for his diligence regarding the grant process.
“I would like to commend Chief Sill for his hard work on this grant,” Hall said. “If you remember the trip to Washington D.C., during that trip Chief Sill went over to the Department of Justice and visited with them. That trip to Washington, during the past couple of years, has turned into a very productive time. I would like to thank commissioners for that. You can see with Chief Sill, that you can benefit from the trip. It was a trip that benefitted, from what you see now, a $200,000 grant. I do want to commend you, chief, for all of your hard work.”
In another matter, Public Works Director Joe Sealey presented the commission with options regarding the remarking of U.S. Highway 54. Costs to remark the stretch of road from six-points to Pershing Avenue. was quoted by Road Safe at $38,754. Additional remarking to Clay Avenue, totalled $3,354.
Commissioner Dave Harrison suggested continuing the remarking process all the way to Western Avenue.
“My whole thing is, if you are going to mark it through town, let’s mark it all the way through town – let’s not quit at Clay,” Harrison said.
Sealey informed commissioners that some work may be unnecessary due to a high possibility of KDOT improvements within the next few years.
“Commissioners, I would remind you, that at the beginning of 2012 fiscal year, which is the start of the new T-Works program, that section of Highway 54 from Kentucky Fried Chicken to Food Bonanza is going to be a No. 1 priority,” he said. “I suspect, and I really believe, you will be making a motion to approve that in 2013. So, you might want to keep that in mind. Do you want to spend that $5,000 to $6,000 striping that section realizing that within two years or less, it is probably going to come up?”
Harrison continued to express concern regarding leaving the project undone.
“Here is what happens, and Liberal is just famous for doing things in pieces instead of doing it all,” he said. “Let’s complete this project. I think when the mayor and I brought that to you, I think we thought we were going from stoplight to stoplight.”
A motion was made by commissioner Larry Koochel to approve the remarking from six-points to Western Avenue. The motion received a quick second from Vice Mayor Joe Denoyer. The project was unanimously approved by the commission.