Archive for Wednesday, January 10, 2001

Mayor Stan Krysztof delivers State of the City address

January 10, 2001

State of the City

Introduction

A. Three years ago as we hired our City administrator, we agreed to take a look at what was happening to the City and develop plans for improving its condition. In addition, we committed to developing a long term vision for how we wanted to lead the community in to the new century. In reporting our progress each year we touch on the accomplishments of the past while looking toward the future, identifying projects and actions the Council must address in the coming year to meet our plans. This report is the third of these annual reports to the community regarding the condition of local government in Baldwin City.

B. As in 1999, we started the year 2000 on a fairly aggressive plan. We planned several major projects. Some were completed, others started, and some still waiting for action. Others have taught us that if we strive for excellence, our efforts will be rewarded by seeing how we have exceeded expectations.

A list of those will be addressed in this report and summarized at the end also.

General Condition

A. We have completed a very successful year doing things that are not that visible to the public. However, we know the public has noticed by the increased consumption in our utilities.

1. We added more to our electric utility backbone

2. We added increased pumping capacity at our water pump station

3. We have completed the construction of Highway 56 and anticipate the improvement of 6th Street in the Spring.

B. We completed payment on the No Fund Warrant purchased in 1999 due to the fire at the KCK Nearman Power Plant. Trial is expected in February 2001. As promised when the trial is over and we receive funds from the judgment, the money will be refunded to our customers who paid the surcharge. During the course of pretrial hearings, decisions have been favoring the City's claim and we remain optimistic about the outcome of the trial.

C. We continued the process of correcting the accounting system which was severely damaged in 1998. We now have a high degree of confidence in the system and its ability to give us accurate financial information

D. We prepared a cash flow plan for each of our operating funds early in the year. The effort gave us the ability to plan expenditures around the receipt of revenue and schedule work more effectively. Fund management improved as a result. The efforts of our City Clerk, Peggy Nichols, continue to improve the financial records.

E. Last year I asked the staff to prepare a community cleanup plan. There were properties that looked like refuse storage yards. We have a fine community and property owners needed to keep some order. In total, we wrote over 70 letters to folks in the community, wrote some citations and were able to get compliance with most of the problems. The ones where compliance has not happened, we're still working with them. This is a process that will continue.

Administrative

A. Accomplishments

1. Our accounting system was upgraded in 1999 to meet the requirements of Y2K. The upgraded system is proving to be more and more reliable as we work out set up errors left from the prior administration.

i. We are using the Purchase Order and Court Management modules that came with the accounting system. This reflects the confidence in the basic system and the time available to do more with the system than we have in the past.

2. The City and the League of Kansas Municipalities completed review of employee salaries. The study showed most employees were paid at lower rates than comparable positions in the region. We budgeted adjustments to take effect in the FY 2001 budget. Our next payroll will include these adjustments.

3. We worked through three different audits this year:

i. The Kansas Department of Revenue conducted a Sales Tax Audit early in the year. The audit results showed substantial compliance. Our staff took the opportunity to quiz the audit team on procedures and gained from their experience.

ii. We had an audit of our Workers Compensation records. Satisfactory results here as well.

iii. The final audit was our regular financial audit. The audit team reported significant improvement with our financial record keeping. There was a vast difference from the audits of years past. We must still focus on the Fixed Asset recording that has not been done for many years.

4. We concluded negotiations on the renewal of the Cable TV franchise. We were able to secure additional services that will be coming on line in the next few weeks. First is getting the availability of digital television. It will be available by the end of February. Cable Internet service will be available by August 1st.

i. I received a letter from MediaCom today announcing 5 new channels as part of meeting their digital TV commitment. The new channels will go on the air effective January 31, 2001. I have asked their General Manager to be at our next City Council meeting to answer citizen questions about this new service.

5. Staff Associations

i. In the past year, we have seen our staff take and continue positions of leadership in their professions and community involvement.

a. Larry has been invited to redraft bylaws for the Lawrence - Douglas County Housing Authority. He is also working with an economic development group seeking to locate industrial and business properties keeping an eye on the environmental impact of business growth.


In addition, He was selected to be on the Board of Directors of the Kansas City Management Association. On the community leadership side, He serves ad the Rotary Club Vice President and will be come President in July.

b. Jim Tarwater has served on the Board of Directors of the Kansas Association of Building Officials

c. Steve Butell serves on a task force with police departments sharing information regarding law enforcement activity in the region.

d. Terry McKinney serves with several other Utility managers and the Kansas Municipal Energy Agency (KMEA) on the Nearman Operating Committee.

e. Bill Winegar continues to serve on the Douglas County Emergency Services Advisory Committee

B. Plans for improvement in the coming year include:

1. Many different administrative systems need attention including:

i. Work continues on an accounting procedures manual. Staff members are documenting their work for desktop guidance for those who temporarily take over their duties. They are also to be used as training manuals. We have used the manuals during the absence of one of our employees. It works.

ii. Personnel Manual needs a review and changes have been initiated.

iii. We will be reviewing a draft of a Safety Manual provided by our Worker's Compensation Insurance Company. An approved safety manual will help reduce workers comp rates in the next budget.

iv. With our new financial system installed, we continue training staff in the use of new software.

2. The City s ability to research city records continues to require attention

i. A Clerks Index will be built. This will provide a basis to find any or all city transactions that have involved the City. We did not address this in the past two years because our attentions were focused completely on financial issues.

3. As mentioned before, fixed asset management will take a priority this year, The Governmental Accounting Standards Board issued a ruling that requires collection of fixed asset information for compliance with nationally recognized accounting principles and more importantly, getting a clean audit opinion.

4. At the beginning of this year, staff will begin renegotiating the telephone franchise. We will learn more about this in the next few weeks.

Financial Management

A. Accomplishments

1. In 1999, we struggled to close the year with cash in the bank. Cash flow planning in FY 2000 improved cash flow month to month. Departments knew when expenditures could occur so cash was available to meet the demands of the various projects.

i. Our cash flow management allows us to make decisions regarding investments and how long investments can be made. When we sold the caterpillar generator earlier in the year, we set aside those funds for future use. Knowing there would be projects later in the year allowed for proper investment of funds.

2. We will continue placing monthly financial summaries in the hands of the Council and staff by the 15th of each month.

B. Plans for the coming year

1. We will continue cash management planning and procedures for the use of City funds.

Planning

A. Accomplishments

1. We completed the review of the Comprehensive Plan. The review gave us a list of issues the Planning Commission is addressing and will present as possible ordinance changes

2. The City participated in an aerial mapping project with Douglas County. We have received digital copies of the aerial maps. The placement of 2 foot contours on the maps are forthcoming.

3. The Planning Commission met in work session this year to review my request to have the minimum building lot size increased to 8,400 sq. ft.

B. Plans for the coming year

1. An update of other City base maps is still needed. Mapping software is needed to use the new aerial maps effectively.

2. As part of the Comprehensive Plan review, we will be talking with Douglas County to set up an area outside the City where we can influence Douglas County Planning decisions.

3. Annexation of areas around Baldwin City has been initiated by the City Administrator. Several areas around the City are receiving service that should be included in the existing boundaries. Areas south and west are likely properties to be included.

4. Complete tree requirements for new land developments and park land

5. A Building Permit tracking process is needed to monitor building construction

Police

A. Accomplishments

1. We received software from the Kansas Bureau of Investigation (KBI) so we can collect law enforcement related information and make the required monthly electronic reporting without having to compile the information manually. Installation is not yet finished.

2. All our officers have completed Basic Training at Kansas Law Enforcement Training Center [KLETC]

3. We purchased an Intox 5000 unit to test drivers for DUI s. Our officers received training to administer "Intox 5000" procedures and complete DUI arrests.

4. Renewal of the School Resource Officer (SRO) grant was accomplished. Cooperation between the City and the School District facilitates this needed program.

i. Last school year, he has made 53 law enforcement related reports, and

ii. 20 Classroom presentations.

5. The City received one of the Law Enforcement Block Grant Awards. Funds were used to supplement the SRO s activities.

B. Plans for the coming year

1. Cross training of the officers will continue to take high priority this year.

2. Completion of the KBI software installation will occur early in the year.

Public Works

A. Accomplishments

1. In 1998, we started a process to re-rate the waste water treatment plant with BG Consultants. The results set the plant capacity to be equal to a population of 4,320. The plant is currently at 80% of the design capacity. Last month, we heard a report from BG outlining a preliminary engineering study on how we need to proceed with treatment plant improvements

i. KDHE sets guidelines for municipal treatment plants. Based on population estimates they more or less dictate the size of treatment plant upgrades.

ii. In Baldwin City s case, our population growth estimates for the next 20 years, KDHE requires a 900,000 gallon treatment facility whether it is a 450,000 addition plus the existing plant or a new 900,000 gallon facility. Based on operational efficiency, the Council is recommending a new 900,000 gallon unit. Staff is reviewing the recommended process and looking at other similar units currently in operation to learn from other Cities about efficiencies where we can take advantage.

2. Highway 56 was completed in October. The state added a bonus to our project that was not anticipated. The overlay of the three lanes was not planned until the spring of 2001. Moving this part of the project forward helped make a finished look for the construction.

3. The 6th Street project is currently being designed. Baker University, Douglas County and the City are working cooperatively on this project which will be constructed in the spring.

4. Baker Wetlands Waterline project was started with Douglas County Rural Water District IV and with the cooperation of Douglas County. The Corps of Engineers made a decision in 1999 regarding the construction of the waterline. The unfortunate part is they failed to notify the City about the project and caused a temporary halt to the project. We are considering other options to protect the City s water supply.

5. Water system improvements were made on 6th St. from High to Baker to facilitate the reconstruction

6. The major water project for the year was the replacement of the booster pumps north of town. This will help us meet the high demand in the summer and improve the water pressure to town. Once an in-line 4 inch water meter is replaced, an increase in pressure will be noticeable.

7. This past year Bill Winegar assumed the role of Assistant Utility Director. He has adapted to this new role and I wanted to recognize his contribution to the organization.

B. Plans for the coming year

1. Water system improvements include the development of a master capital improvement plan for water facilities. We expect to include storage and distribution in the plans.

2. Sewer Collection System upgrades will continue to reduce the infiltration of storm water into the City s sewer collection system. A report on smoke testing was submitted by BG Consultants this year outlining the next steps in reducing storm water infiltration.

3. The major project in the sewer utility is the design and construction of a new wastewater treatment facility. Plans are underway for a proposal process to select an engineer to design the facility. A competitive process must be followed to be eligible for CDBG grants and state revolving fund money.

4. Street overlay in different places in the City are planned

Utilities

A. Accomplishments

1. More electric distribution system improvements were made this year. The east side of Baldwin s system was upgraded to handle 12,470 volts.

2. We made progress in making the utility more reliable this past year. In 1999, outages amounted to 26 hours in 20 separate incidents. Following improvements to the system, our outages dropped to 7 hours and 13 incidents. Most of the 2000 outages are attributed to storm damage and squirrels crossing phases.

3. We hired Sawvel & Associates in 1999 to guide us in a five year improvement plan for the electric utility. Many of the recommendations were accomplished this summer.

4. A new power contract was purchased last December to meet the short term needs of the City. 2 megawatts of "system firm" power was purchased from Grand River Dam Authority which began delivery in May. This power becomes the base load for the City. Purchasing 3 megawatts during the summer helped us meet a peak load of 8,285 kW last summer compared to 6,234 kW five years ago and 5,120 kW 10 years ago. With the quality of power available to all our customers, we experienced an 18% increase in load. If this happens again in 2001.... "Well, it can t happen again...." Mandatory energy conservation measures will be required as we adjust to new requirements.

5. Last year, we started negations with KCPL to guarantee more capacity on their lines to Baldwin City from Gardner and Ottawa. We have a verbal agreement that will provide that assurance. We will complete an agreement where we will be a partner in a new substation in Ottawa guaranteeing 15 megawatts of power.

B. Plans for the coming year

1. Distribution system improvements made the past two years will now allow us to change the voltage to homes on the east side of town. This, together with redirecting the feeders on the southwest part of town will continue to improve service to our customers.

2. We will have additional engine repairs as we improve generation reliability.

i. Engine #4 will have a turbocharger rebuilt. Not doing so would create a fire hazard.

ii. Engine #6 will have its blower rebuilt

3. One note about the value of these engines. They certainly do cost money to run and maintain. If we can think back to the Nearman crisis and remember they operated for a long spell. Consider the alternative cost we didn t have to pay for the high cost of energy. At $2,500 a megawatt hour, one hour of our load would have been $10,000. Since they ran upwards of 10 hours a day, we saved $100,000 in high priced purchased power. Yes, Virginia. There is an Energy Santa. Let s remember what we had to pay in surcharges in 1999 and be thankful we had generation and guys working in 120 degree plus temperatures providing for this community.

Economic Development

A. Accomplishments

1. We set out last year to work with Douglas County and the Economic Development Council to acquire new land for an Industrial/Business Park. We met with Debi Moore to get direction on acquiring land. This resulted in review of two pieces of property and placing an option to purchase on one of these.

2. Our City Administrator was invited to sit on the ECO2 committee with the Douglas County Chamber evaluating sites for future business and industrial development. The main purpose of the group is to blend the requirement for business development and preservation of open space. Results of the committee s work are due later this spring.

3. We placed an option on property southwest of Baldwin for business and recreation purposes, Later this spring, we will present a development plan for this property.

4. We see a bit of irony regarding our land holdings. Citizens are petitioning the purchase of this property less than one half mile from City Limits while a petition is being circulated urging the City to keep property over two miles from the City.

B. Plans for the coming year

1. Last year we proposed examination of the economic vitality of Baldwin City. The City now has three points of business activity -- West Baldwin, Downtown and Highway 56. We need to develop a plan for coordinating the three areas and the economic vitality of all three. I will propose a task force consisting of member of the three business communities to work on this.

Intergovernmental Relations

A. Accomplishments

1. We have a number of examples of improving relations and innovative relations with area governments and institutions.

i. We participate in the Quad County Water Cooperative. This is a group of 12 cities and water districts planning for the areas water needs beginning 10 years >from now. We expect this to develop into a Public Wholesale Water District when the planning is complete. As you remember in December, the group is contracting with the Kansas Water Office and the Corps of Engineers to prepare a feasibility plan for the group. This year, I am Chairman of the Co-op.

ii. The Baldwin Recreation Commission and its Director note recognition. The efforts this summer to relieve the City of operating the swimming pool and focus all recreation activities under one roof is important to the community.

iii. Baker University continues to work with us as a community partner on the construction of 6th Street. They are participating financially in the project as well.

Growth & Development

A. Accomplishments

1. We continued to issue single family building permits at a high pace. In 1999, 37 permits were sold. In 2000, 39 single family permits were sold. A total of 54 construction permits were issued.

2. All together, 137 building permits were sold with a total value of $924,042. $45,660 was received in permit fees.

B. Plans for the coming year

1. As we reviewed development this fall, we looked at what the impact on the City s infrastructure would be. The chief barometer was our wastewater treatment plant. Based on the number of lots to be developed and the remaining capacity at the treatment plant, we placed a moratorium on processing new sub division applications. This will continue until there is reasonable belief that treatment capacity will again be available.

2. We said last year the growth potential for this area is strong. We must continue, as we stated then, we must continue defining the growth on our terms. To do so we must continue to:

i. Analyze Growth potential and how it impacts Baldwin City!!!

ii. We used the Sewer Capacity plan prepared by BG Consultants to dictate what could be developed and to what extent it impacts the existing utility systems -- water, sewer, and electrical. This will continue.

3. We continue our commitment to control growth so we do not change the character of Baldwin City and turn it into something other than what and why we came here.

Capital Planning

A. Capital Improvement Budget has been reinstituted

1. We focused on the existing infrastructure, irrespective of growth pressures.

2. The condition of the City s infrastructure had little attention in the past. We are meeting our basic needs after two summers of intense work. The Council and the Staff have been working to review the state of current infrastructure and how we might replace it in an acceptable and affordable timetable. To date, we have proposed or accomplished the following:

i. New power supply - GRDA Power

ii. Five year plan for electric utility construction including substations and distribution lines

iii. An upgrade to water booster pumps north of Baldwin City

iv. Water storage at the southeast part of town

v. Improvements to the sewer collection system

vi. An increase in capacity of the waste water treatment plant

vii. Continued improvements to the electric distribution system

viii. Completion of the Newton Street Substation and upgrade of the Plant substation.

B. Plans for the coming year

1. Secure land for a recreation facility and ball fields. We had a task force working on this project and we recognize and appreciate their contribution to identify the uses and financing of this facility

2. Other land acquisition needs for the City include:

i. industrial/business park

ii. electric substation

iii. water tower

3. We shall begin design and construction for increasing the capacity of the treatment plant using growth projections recommended in the BG Consultants report.

4. Water line and hydrants need to be replaced to meet current usage requirements. Attention must also be paid to the requirements of fire flow -- the process of getting the right amount of water to a fire.

5. Efforts will continue on moving the Baker Wetlands/Haskell water line out of the wetlands to assure safe transmission of water to the City and ease of access should maintenance be necessary.

6. Electrical system improvements to East Baldwin following last summer's work. We will also address moving several feeders from the 2400 system to the 12,470 volt system to improve service.

New Initiatives

A. I will be proposing a change in the Library Board line up also. My proposal will fill the next vacancy on the Library Board by a Baldwin area resident. This will be similar to the requirement of the Planning Commission that one member be from outside the City Limits.

1. I came to this proposal watching the Highway 59 issue. Many residents in the country consider themselves part of the Baldwin Community. There are folks who contribute time and energy through "Friends of the Library."

2. As vacancies have occurred on the Library Board, many fine people have been recommended to fill the seats but unfortunately are not City residents. I am looking for a way to recognize their contributions by establishing a seat to be filled by a non resident.

Summary

A. This is where we see the City and where we think it should be going.

B. It is an aggressive view, true. What we know from the past is that if you do not set your sights high, nothing will get done. We didn't get everything accomplished in 2000 that we set out to do. However, we did a significant amount of work and the City is in better shape than it was at the beginning of 2000.

C. Again, we are setting our sights high in 2001 and we want to continue meeting the needs of this community into the new century.

D. Thank you, City Council, for all your work

E. Thank you, all City staff and employees, for your work this past year.

F. Thank you, Department Heads and especially our City Administrator. Let's do a grand job again this year!

City of Baldwin City Major Projects

Major Projects

A. Highway 56

1. Purchased right of way

2. Funded construction cost with Temporary Notes

3. Construction completed on realignment of 1055 and 6th street

4. Construction of Highway 56 completed

B. Initiated improvements to City s financial records

1. Hired new City Clerk (Dec. 1998)

2. Established new procedures for financial accountability

3. Accounting system balanced for the first time in many years.

4. Provide monthly financial summaries to the Council

5. Cash flow plan completed

C. Initiated design and construction of 6th Street project

1. Coordination with Douglas County Public Works and Baker University

2. Engineering initiated

3. Construction to begin in Spring 2001

D. Water system improvements

1. Completed replacement of booster pumps from 500 GPM to 1000 GPM

2. Purchased SCADA system to monitor water flow at water towers and pump stations in and out of the system (Wellsville/Edgerton)

3. Replaced water line in 6th street in advance of reconstruction project.

E. Initiated replacement of Baker Wetlands waterline

1. Submit KDOC Block Grant Application for funding (grant was not funded)

2. Cooperative project with Douglas County Rural Water District IV, Douglas County and Baldwin City.

3. Relocating waterline to County Highway 1055 right of way

F. Developed alliance with Douglas County Rural Water District IV

1. Resell water to the district from their allotment.

2. Working to establish a wholesale water district to secure more water capacity for Baldwin City.

3. Joint use of DC RWD water tower to improve water pressure on the east side

G. Upgraded City s computer system and software for Y2K compliance

H. Funded Swimming Pool Construction

1. Completed swimming pool construction within budget

2. Improved the quality of recreation experiences for Baldwin City children

I. Initiated Electric system upgrades

1. Electric system 5 year Capital improvement system written

2. Completed construction and testing of 7th Street/Newton substation

3. Completed Power Plant substation replacement

4. Installed 7,680 feet of 336 ACSR electric line to convert voltage >from 2400 volts to 12,470 volts -- Northwest Feeder

5. Installed communication system between the new substation and power plant

6. Installed new water cooler for engine #4 at power plant

7. Installed new mufflers at power plant for engines #3 and #4.

8. Eliminated low voltage problems in West Baldwin

9. Relocated above ground wire behind Baker s new student housing and reinstalled services on Chapel Street

10. Funded Electric project revenue bond

11. Completed construction of Northeast Feeder and transfer of feeder 2 to the Northeast feed.

J. Establishing Cash Management procedures

1. Bought CD s to set funds aside for FY 2000 beginning cash balance

2. Set funds aside for debt payments

3. Developed 12 month cash flow plan for each operating fund

K. Established a School Resource Officer position

L. Initiated review of the Comprehensive Plan

City of Baldwin City Major Projects

Major Projects

A. Highway 56

1. Purchased right of way

2. Funded construction cost with Temporary Notes

3. Construction completed on realignment of 1055 and 6th street

4. Construction of Highway 56 completed

B. Initiated improvements to City s financial records

1. Hired new City Clerk (Dec. 1998)

2. Established new procedures for financial accountability

3. Accounting system balanced for the first time in many years.

4. Provide monthly financial summaries to the Council

5. Cash flow plan completed

C. Initiated design and construction of 6th Street project

1. Coordination with Douglas County Public Works and Baker University

2. Engineering initiated

3. Construction to begin in Spring 2001

D. Water system improvements

1. Completed replacement of booster pumps from 500 GPM to 1000 GPM

2. Purchased SCADA system to monitor water flow at water towers and pump stations in and out of the system (Wellsville/Edgerton)

3. Replaced water line in 6th street in advance of reconstruction project.

E. Initiated replacement of Baker Wetlands waterline

1. Submit KDOC Block Grant Application for funding (grant was not funded)

2. Cooperative project with Douglas County Rural Water District IV, Douglas County and Baldwin City.

3. Relocating waterline to County Highway 1055 right of way

F. Developed alliance with Douglas County Rural Water District IV

1. Resell water to the district from their allotment.

2. Working to establish a wholesale water district to secure more water capacity for Baldwin City.

3. Joint use of DC RWD water tower to improve water pressure on the east side

G. Upgraded City s computer system and software for Y2K compliance

H. Funded Swimming Pool Construction

1. Completed swimming pool construction within budget

2. Improved the quality of recreation experiences for Baldwin City children

I. Initiated Electric system upgrades

1. Electric system 5 year Capital improvement system written

2. Completed construction and testing of 7th Street/Newton substation

3. Completed Power Plant substation replacement

4. Installed 7,680 feet of 336 ACSR electric line to convert voltage >from 2400 volts to 12,470 volts -- Northwest Feeder

5. Installed communication system between the new substation and power plant

6. Installed new water cooler for engine #4 at power plant

7. Installed new mufflers at power plant for engines #3 and #4.

8. Eliminated low voltage problems in West Baldwin

9. Relocated above ground wire behind Baker s new student housing and reinstalled services on Chapel Street

10. Funded Electric project revenue bond

11. Completed construction of Northeast Feeder and transfer of feeder 2 to the Northeast feed.

J. Establishing Cash Management procedures

1. Bought CD s to set funds aside for FY 2000 beginning cash balance

2. Set funds aside for debt payments

3. Developed 12 month cash flow plan for each operating fund

K. Established a School Resource Officer position

L. Initiated review of the Comprehensive Plan

Commenting has been disabled for this item.