Dodge City Mayor Kent Smoll presented the State of the City address on Wednesday.
Smoll hit highlights that have taken place in the city over the past year with the theme of the address being, "Looking ahead."
During the address, Smoll, on behalf of the city, presented the Dodge City Community College with a check of $270,072 check that was given for the agreed upon fair market value of the 3.1 acres of land the college sold to the city for the Star Bonds Project that is bringing in Sutherland's home and garden store and other retailers along 14th Avenue.
"This is a presentation for what we said we were going to do," Smoll said. "We are making what we think is the fair market value contract with the community college come to fruition. We appreciate the partnership between the board and the president and look forward to a long relationship to have a place for people to go to get jobs."
DCCC board of trustee member Floris Jean Hampton and DCCC president Dr. Harold Nolte were on hand from the college to receive the check.
Another bit of information Smoll shared was the impending retirements of city finance director Nannette Pogue and Dodge City Fire Chief Robert Heinz in 2019.
Pogue and Heinz have more than 30 years of work experience with the city.
More highlights were the biogas facility south of Dodge City that has already brought in more than $2 million in revenue for the city which will continue to grow.
There is discussion for the implementation of a recycling facility that would allow the city to have curb side recycling picked up throughout town.
The projected completion dates for Sutherland's and Casey's General stores are spring for 2019.
With the budget, the city receives 26 cents per dollar for property tax.
"Everybody says our property taxes are high," Smoll said. "And with that tax we provide for police, fire, streets, parks and several other essential services.
"So we think we do a pretty good job with what we get for property taxes and continue to see growth in our community which has really helped fuel that additional expense that we've had with out an increase in taxes."
Smoll added the mill levy has gone down three mills over the last two years.
The Central Avenue construction was also part of the discussion with plans continuing with the project into summer 2019.
The street will become a two-way street for the first time in Dodge City in decades.
The University Center for a mid-level medical college provider is still moving forward with talks still on going with Kansas universities, community colleges and Kansas Senator Bud Estes, whom Smoll said, "Has been very instrumental in keeping this thing going."
Housing at Candletree #8, Wagon Wheel #2, 6th Avenue Extension and Fairway Drive through way intersection was also addressed along with the upgrades to Legends Park and the upcoming sports tournaments and Shrine Bowl coming in 2019.
Another issue Smoll raised was with the state and transportation that was halted regarding the plan for making the highway between Dodge City and Cimarron a four-lane highway.
"I will provide testimony at the joint legislative transportation vision task force and relay those concerns to transportation improvement projects in Dodge City," Smoll said. "They want to talk about new projects and I will say we need to complete the projects already on the books.
"So before they add any more they need to go back and look at that."
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