Sabetha City Commission: City donates to Humane Society

A $2,000 annual donation for the next five years from the City of Sabetha to the Brown County Humane Society will help the animal shelter stay up and running. At the Sabetha City Commission meeting Monday evening, July 23, commissioners listened to BCHS volunteers Ruth Shaver and Addie Huning explain the needs of the shelter.

BCHS serves Brown, Doniphan and Nemaha counties.

“Last year alone, 300-plus animals went through the shelter,” Shaver said. “This year, we are on the same track to take in 300 to 400 animals.”

BCHS is a no-kill facility and accepts most animals from the surrounding areas.

Each city pays $35 per animal if BCHS accepts them into the shelter. The exception to the $35 fee is the city of Horton, as the city donates $1,500 per year to the shelter.

Along with the $35 fee, the only income to the shelter is through the adoption fees ($125 per animal) and fundraisers.

BCHS employs one full-time and two part-time employees, amounting to $24,000 in payroll per year. In addition to payroll, BCHS pays $25 for a heartworm test, $18 for a rabies test, among other charges. If the animal has heartworm, it costs BCHS approximately $500 to $1,000 for treatment. BCHS pays more than $2,000 in vet bills every month.

Last year, BCHS budgeted for $70,000 in expenses, but spent more than $80,000 due to the addition of two part-time positions. BCHS had to dip into their savings to cover the budget.

“We pay the employees very little to work at the shelter,” Shaver said. “But we really do need them.”

Therefore, Shaver said, BCHS is approaching area communities and counties requesting help with funding.

Huning asked the commission for a $1,000 annual donation.

Commissioner Norm Schmitt made a motion to donate $2,000 to BCHS, to which Commissioner Julie Burenheide seconded. The motion carried and it was approved to donate $2,000 per year for five years to BCHS. Because of the city’s donation, Shaver said they would waive the $35 fee for animals picked up in Sabetha.

Meeting Minutes

The Sabetha City Commission met at 6 p.m. Monday, July 23, at City Hall. Present were Mayor Doug Clark, Commissioners Julie Burenheide, Nick Aberle and Norm Schmitt, City Administrator Doug Allen, Assistant City Administrator Bill Shroyer and City Clerk Steve Compo. Commissioner Maridel Wittmer was absent.

Also present were Sabetha Police Chief Robert Wahwasuck and Officer A.J. Ross; Teresa McAnerney, Nancy Gafford, David Key and Raymond Thieme on behalf of the Northeast Kansas Enterprise Facilitation; Addie Huning and Ruth Shaver on behalf of the Brown County Humane Society; and patrons Robert Ruddick and Keith Moore.

403 N. 6th

Chief Wahwasuck discussed code violations at 403 N. 6th Street, which is owned by Keith Moore and family. At the June 25 meeting, the commission held a public hearing and then approved Resolution No. 2018-15, allowing the city to remedy and abate said nuisance (a garage) 20 days after the publication of the resolution if improvements were not made before that time. The 20 days has passed and improvements have not been made.

Wahwasuck said he has spoken to Moore about the violation and there is some question as to exactly who owns the property within the family. Moore said he does not have complete control over decisions made about the property, though he understood that the problem needed to be corrected.

Commissioner Burenheide asked what the plan was for correcting the garage at this property.

Wahwasuck said he is talking with the Moores about using Neighbor-2-Neighbor to help with the tearing down of the garage at no cost to the property owners. Commissioners gave Moore until the next commission meeting on Monday, Aug. 9, to either repair the garage or tear it down. If it is not complete by Aug. 9, the city will tear it down at the cost of the property owner.

Also at the meeting:

McAnerney discussed the progress of NEK Enterprise Facilitation initiative. She said the initiative celebrated its 15th year this summer. On behalf of the NEK Enterprise Facilitation, McAnerney requested a $6,000 three-year commitment from the commission. Commissioners approved the $6,000 donation.

Wahwasuck introduced A.J. Ross as a new police officer and then presented his police report. Additionally, Wahwasuck also said the police force recently found unsupervised young children running through the weight room at Midtown. They noted there was no signage indicating unsupervised children were not allowed in the weight room. City Administrator Allen said signs will be put up stating that children under age 16 must be supervised.

City Administrator Allen said he would coordinate a meeting between the Rock Creek Township Board and the Nemaha County Commissioners regarding chip and seal of Kansas Avenue. In March, members of the township board asked that the two governing bodies consider splitting the cost of chip and seal on an area of road a little more than a mile going west and a half a mile going back into Sabetha on 14th Street.

Commissioners approved the following:

• Minutes from the June 25 meeting.

• Ordinance No. 1529, regulating public offenses. This is a standard ordinance, incorporating any new laws.

• Ordinance No. 1530, updating current traffic ordinance.

Also on the agenda to approve was Ordinance No. 1531, amending the Sabetha Community Hospital advisory board. This ordinance was not approved, pending clarification from the city’s attorney, Martin Mishler.

The next commission meeting will be held at 6 p.m. Monday, Aug. 9, at City Hall.

Krista Wasinger69 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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