Sabetha City Commission: Construction of Wellness Center to begin soon

Sabetha citizens can expect to see construction begin soon on the Health and Wellness Center to be located on the Sabetha Community Hospital facility campus at 14th and Oregon streets, which is city-owned property.

At the City Commission meeting Monday, June 25, Commissioner Norm Schmitt said drawings are complete and AHRS Construction will begin work soon.

In September 2017, the commissioners approved an agreement with SCH for a Center to be constructed and managed by SCH, using funds already raised by the Sabetha Health and Wellness Committee (SHWC). AHRS Construction was hired to design the facility to fall at or below the $2.1 million budget. During the design process, it was requested that AHRS add in two endless pools. Fundraising commenced to raise the additional funds needed for this addition.

Schmitt, who is a member of the SCH Board, said the addition of the two pools came in between $385,000 to $400,000. Schmitt requested the city commit to $100,000 of this price as he had already received word that the remaining $300,000 had been secured toward this portion of the project.

These exercise pools can hold up to five individuals per water aerobic class and also can be used for rehabilitation.

Commissioners looked to City Administrator Doug Allen on the availability of $100,000 toward the project. Allen said it has been a fairly good year, so the funds would be available. Commissioners approved the $100,000 toward the endless pools for the Center.

In further discussion, commissioners expressed some concerns over talk throughout the community suggesting this facility would be operated and run by the SHWC. Commissioner Julie Burenheide emphasized that this was taxpayer money that was going into this facility and it will be located on city land, and therefore, it was the taxpayers’ facility.

The Center will be staffed by the SCH. A board consisting of representatives from the city commission, SHWC, SCH board and donors would govern the Center’s operation. All board members would be recommended by their organizations, but would be subject to final approval by the commission.

Schmitt also noted that a manager candidate has been selected, and a decision will be made within the next few weeks.

Meeting Minutes

The Sabetha City Commission met at 6 p.m. Monday, June 25. Present were Mayor Doug Clark, Commissioners Nick Aberle, Norm Schmitt, Maridel Wittmer and Julie Burenheide, City Administrator Doug Allen, Assistant City Administrator Bill Shroyer and City Clerk Steve Compo. Also present was patron Bob Ruddick and the city’s attorney, Martin Mishler.


Mayor Clark opened a hearing on vacating a portion of Sunset Drive between Lots 16 and 20, in the Kellenberger Addition. Hearing no comment from the public, the hearing was closed. Ordinance No. 1528 was approved, reverting said land to the adjacent land owners.

Mayor Clark opened a hearing on code violations at 403 N. 6th Street. Hearing no comment from the public, the hearing was closed. Resolution No. 2018-15 was approved, allowing the city to remedy and abate said nuisance (the garage), 20 days after the publication of the resolution if improvements were not made before that time.


Commissioners discussed problems at the lake. Going forward, Sabetha Police Department will send officers out twice per shift to circle the lake. In addition, the Nemaha County Sheriff’s Office has agreed to send officers out.

Additionally, the city will implement a “quiet zone” after 11 p.m. Lake visitors will not be allowed to have loud music or loud conversation after this time. Swimming will not be allowed after dark.

Commissioners discussed fee increases and City Administrator Allen will look into this before the next meeting. Currently, the fees are $7 per night or an annual fee of $30. Allen said ordinances will likely need to be passed for these regulations and he will have those drawn up for the next meeting.

Also at the meeting:

Commissioners entered into a 20-minute executive session with Mishler, Allen and Shroyer, regarding personnel matters. Upon returning to regular session, no binding action was taken.

The commissioners also approved the following:

• Minutes from the June 11 meeting.

• Board appointments for Lynn Hartter for the Planning Commission and Christy Sibold for the Tourism Board.

• Wage Resolution No. 13 for lifeguards for wage increases and No. 14 for Cole Lehwald for general services.

The commissioners canceled their regular meeting scheduled for Monday, July 9, due to vacation conflicts. The commission’s next regular meeting will be held at 6 p.m. Monday, July 23.

Krista Wasinger56 Posts

Krista Wasinger is Co-Editor of The Sabetha Herald, where she has been on staff since 2011. She specializes in city reporting and feature stories, as well as photography and page and advertising design. Krista is a 2004 Fort Hays State University graduate with a degree in communications studies with an emphasis in journalism. She lives in Sabetha with her husband and four children.


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