Council Recognizes Aviation Appreciation Month



The council adopted Proclamation #19-06 declaring June 2019 as General Aviation Appreciation Month, initiated by the non-profit coalition, Alliance for Aviation Across America. The group’s purpose is to raise awareness about the value of general aviation and local airports, particularly those that serve rural communities such as the Lamar Municipal Airport, currently undergoing plans to change its name to Southeast Colorado Regional Airport.  The Proclamation  states in part, general aviation contributes over $2.4 billion to Colorado’s economy each year and aids in healthcare services, law-enforcement and by transporting business travelers to their destination through the year.  Colorado is home to 61 public-use airports, serving 18,891 pilots and 6,731 active general aviation aircraft.

Lamar Police Chief, Kyle Miller, reviewed some revised fines for municipal penalty assessments for violations of the municipal code. Chief Miller explained that with a PA or Penalty Assessment, the individual cited for the offense has the choice of paying the fine or appearing in court.  With a Summons, the individual cited will be required to appear in court.  Less than a dozen offenses were listed for increases, usually running from between $25 to $14 dollars for a current rate, to between $50 and $23 for the proposed rates.  Some leeway was discussed to allow for certain cases such as deferring a fine for an elderly resident who hadn’t shoveled snow off their sidewalk in a timely manner.

The council voted to allow overnight RV parking on Park Street between 7th and 9th Streets parallel to Savage Avenue to accommodate the influx of riders and support staff for the Pedal the Plains event which will be in Lamar Thursday, September 12th as part of their tour through southeast Colorado. Mayor Roger Stagner noted that some limits might be made on running generators after 10pm in the residential neighborhood.

Lamar and Granada signed an annual agreement which will allow Granada to hold their stray dogs in the Lamar Animal Shelter at a cost of $20 per dog for a five day period. Granada has no facilities to hold the animals.  Granada will transport their dogs to Lamar, but will be limited in the number of strays sent based on available space in Lamar.  The dogs will be held for five days after which they may be adopted out under state statutes.  Chief Miller said the Lamar shelter provides this service for Springfield, Eads and Holly, part of the shelter’s long-range plans to offer pet owners these services on a regional scale.

City of Lamar staff has developed screening standards recommended by CIRSA, the city’s risk policy carrier, which will evaluate applicants for employment. The city’s HR Manager, Margaret Saldana explained some of the disqualifying criteria which include:  forms of sexual assault including child molestation or prostitution, all felony violence as well as drug offenses, theft, embezzlement or child endangerment.  Some misdemeanor violent offenses with the past seven years, some traffic violations or contributing to the delinquency of a minor such as providing alcohol to a minor.  Additional language was discussed for inclusion in the standards including some recommendations for hiring would be at the discretion of the City Administrator and HR manager.  The Lamar Police Department conducts its own separate background checks.  Saldana noted that the screening will only apply to those job applicants who have been made an offer for a position and will not be conducted at large when simply filling out a job application.  The council discussed the examples before approving the screening standards.

City Administrator, John Sutherland, discussed with council, a means of alleviating an undue financial hardship which has been placed on The Home Store in Lamar due to the lack of funding the city had expected to use to pay for new decorative flower pots for Main Street beautification. “The cost is $40,000 and the Home Store has obligated themselves to purchase these for the city with the expectation of timely reimbursement,” he said, adding that funding has been delayed from the initial 2016 agreement between CDOT and the city.  Sutherland said he’s going to press the issue with the funding, but left discussion open for getting The Home Store off a financial hook.

The council agreed to participate in a Coordinated Election, authorizing the City Clerk to file the intent with the Prowers County Clerk for the November elections. The 2020 budget calendar was also approved, as presented by Kristin McCrea, City Treasurer.  A public hearing and a first reading of the budget ordinance should be presented by the council by October 14th.

By Russ Baldwin

Filed Under: City of LamarConsumer IssuesFeaturedLaw EnforcementPublic SafetyRecreationTourismUtilities


About the Author: