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Lamar Council Approves EMS Funding, Animal Shelter Funds

Eric Depperschmidt, Executive Director of PEP, Prowers Economic Prosperity, provided a recap of the recent annual meeting, similar to those he has offered to the Granada and Holly town councils.  Both of those reports were detailed in earlier articles in The Prowers Journal.  Depperschmidt said the PEP offices are now in the administration building of Lamar Community College until such time as a new location can be found.  “We’re still seeking a financial remedy through a Business Incubator system in which office space could be shared between both parties,” he explained.  Councilman Kirk Crespin suggested an attempt could be made for a retail-oriented incubator which could offer small mom and pop ventures an opportunity to work from an office instead of a home or garage in the future.

Lamar Fire Chief Burkhart told the council Lamar Fire and Emergency Services need to upgrade the software platform used for EMS and fire reporting.  The upgrade is required by the State for data tracking of EMS runs.  The Chief said there will be no extra charge for the upgrade on the annual maintenance fee as this was a state-mandated measure and as such, the cost is borne by the State.

Lamar Police Chief, Kyle Miller, informed the council, the city has been approved for a $10,000 grant from the Colorado Pet Over-Population Fund which will help pay for costs for neutering and spaying all dogs that come to the Lamar Shelter prior to being adopted so the new owner is not subject to the costs.  Funds will also be applied to medical expenses and emergency care the dogs may require.  Local vets have agreed to offer a discount for the spaying and neutering.  $8,400 of the grant will be applied to neutering and spaying and $1,600 for veterinary care.

Kathy Garcia, U.S. Senator’s liaison for southeast Colorado out of Pueblo, provided a brief update on legislation pending in Congress now that the House and Senate has reconvened.  She said the new Farm Bill is under discussion and she is available through her office for any resident’s issues regarding VA coverage or questions about Social Security.  Her number is 719-543-1324.  Garcia noted a meeting will be held in Granada later in March regarding the steps needed to have Camp Amache under the umbrella of the National Park Service.

Mayor Stagner suggested to Chief Miller, that because of semis speeding through the southern stretch of Lamar along Main Street, some patrols be increased in the area leading into and out of Lamar along Highway 287.  Chief Miller said that will soon be happening.

The council, acting on the recommendation of the Lamar Water Board, re-appointed Bob Nickelson to a five year term expiring 2023.

Councilman Oscar Riley, the city’s liaison to Spreading Antlers Golf Course noted the need for two replacement green’s mowers at an estimated cost of $135,000.  Sixteen trees were also removed from the course and a watering program may begin shortly due to the lack of any precipitation.

The long-awaited grant funding from GoCO’s Inspire Grant is still being waited on.  Mayor Stagner said he has had difficulty reaching a representative to explain why the contract needed to release the grant funds to the city is still pending.  The delay continues to push back on the scheduled construction dates for the proposed skateboard park in Willow Creek Park, a new bathroom and other amenities for North Gateway Park and bicycles and their storage units at the schools in the community.  Stagner said he will attempt to make contact again, but the delay is pushing the construction period out of the summer and into the fall at this point.

City Administrator, John Sutherland, suggested the March 5th budget work session with the Prowers County Commissioners be conducted in executive session as discussions will pertain to negotiations.  The council will hold its monthly informal breakfast from 7am to 8am on Wednesday, March 7th at the Pit Stop.  Daylight Savings Time returns for the season, beginning at 2am on Sunday, March 11th.

The liquor license for Coronica’s was approved by the council.

The council went into executive session with the City Attorney to receive legal advice regarding ARPA litigation.

By Russ Baldwin

Filed Under: AgricultureCity of GranadaCity of LamarCollegeConsumer IssuesCountyEconomyFeaturedLaw EnforcementPublic SafetyTransportation

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