Page 1


e Ottawa City this On behalf of th roud to present p am I , n o si is Comm s of rt to the citizen o ep R al u n n A ort is 2012 This annual rep a. aw tt O f o y it the C e awareness to th g n ri b to ed d n inte ents d accomplishm an s ie it v ti ac y man . We Ottawa in 2012 in ed en p ap h that inform ort as a way to p re is th ce u d pro business g citizens and in ay -p x ta , u o y f your the activities o owners, about aff. with ent and City st out their duties g in y rr ca in local governm s fulnes We also thank s for their faith ee y. y n ti lo p ru sc em c y li it b C u sing p our ud our ls serving on y and ever-increa nize and appla ia g es ic co m ff re o ti d to ic t te m o ec an n el w o We cult ec rk om the nities – we wo rity, given diffi u r community, fr g u rt te o o f p in o p d o el an v er y le te it n y al qu d volu at ever hts of n committees an tizens involved e of the highlig ci ze m ti so ed ci e , at ar ic es e rc ed er d fo H e th s, task a City. the many board matter to us as to ly n al o re si is at m th m g o C se thin focused on tho s. ay st to er h it et g to the United State in re ti the Prairie Spir re m to o s fr ce t la ee p tr 5 S 2 p th of the to ks on 15 2012: nt. viding sidewal ed Ottawa one ro am p n , d ey te nhancement gra n le E o p n M m io co at rt as o w sp • CNN n ct a KDOT Tra Schools grant idewalk Proje y S b to t d s ee te ce u tr o S an n R th fi e 5 y 1 af d full ers, a S • The Eisenhower – an mmunity partn to co t er es th w o il d ra an T l 0 Rai d SD 29 d additional lan ols. ratively with U o an o h , ab sc ay ll r w co n ea n g ru in e ts th rk en place • Wo provem . deral grant to re fe nal sidewalk im n io o it li d il for the runway ad m th 4 ed w d .1 n 2 ro $ g fu ed re iv tu ce fu to allow for ne of only five s ipal Airport re o ie ic – n n o 2 u 1 m M 0 t 2 a n ra in aw g ” tt USA • O ed by e to a “Playful City d partially fund nities nationwid as an u m ed ed m ir iz u n co q g 9 ac 2 co re as ly s n w munitie one of o one of 213 com Kansas, and is f as o w te a ta S aw e tt th O • rs of ch in total of 370 yea esignated as su ed in . b rs m ea y co e a v f ti communities d o secu saries or for three con ne work anniver to es il m r fo r receive the hon ed ere recogniz and staff do ou w t s en ee m y n lo er p v o em g ur City • 20 City rtunity of business. Yo ce la p r /o r growth, oppo d fo t an e. e en m m o n h o servic r ir u v o ay g an en ort n to make Ottaw e while fosterin This annual rep er e. h id sp v o ro m p at u e o n You have chose y w e tax dollars lenges ahead, th th small, hometo al t e ch es th v e ic in rv m y o se n el o re is p for have ec ve to w best to ter, better future e we may still h il opment. We stri g h el ri W b ev d y. en it ic n ev u m o m an n f o our com and ec mise o emonstrate pro s of progress in d t le p en m am cu ex o ts d h is g in th highli d achievements an ts en m sh y. li p accom e, work and pla v li to ce la p at Ottawa - a gre n, Mayor Blake Jorgense s 66067-2347 sa n waks a K , a w a � O�a ry • ce ko a ic .f H w . S w w 1 0 • 1 v • o waks.g City Hall 39 • www.o�a 6 -3 9 2 2 ) 5 8 (7 29-3637 • Fax: Phone: (785) 2


Human Resources Melissa Fairbanks, Director

The City of Ottawa believes our employees are our most valuable resource in providing services to citizens, property owners and visitors. The Human Resources Department provides the following services: recruitment; compensation and classification; personnel policy development and administration; employee evaluation procedures; regulatory compliance; employee benefits and activities; employee training; administrative projects; and provides various support services. The department also handles Risk Management functions including loss control, tort claims, safety and workers’ compensation. In 2012, the City hired 11 new employees, promoted four current employees, filled 12 seasonal positions and two temporary positions. Six employees left the City’s employment during 2012, and five employees retired from the City of Ottawa in 2012: Ken Hennessey, Finance, after 19 years of service; Ron Hughes, Finance, after 26 years of service; Dave Sellens, Fire, after 33 years of service; Gene Seaton, Utilities/Water Distribution/Wastewater Collection Division after 23 years of service; and Reggie Silvey, Public Works/Parks Division after 25 years of service. In 2012, discrimination and harassment in the workplace training was mandatory for all employees; drug and alcohol awareness training was provided for employees, with additional training conducted for supervisors; and Heartsaver First Aid/CPR/AED training was conducted. Other trainings provided were hazard communication requirements; workplace violence; accident investigation; home safety; Competent Person for excavation & trench worksites; and confined space entry. The Wellness Program for employees continued into its fifth year in 2012. We recognize that healthy employees not only help reduce health care costs in our self-insured health plan, but can also help reduce workers’ compensation claims and costs. A total of 98 employees and spouses participated in the health screenings which included a blood pressure check, body fat analysis, cholesterol and glucose screening, PSA tests for males over 40, and (optional) fitness testing. Several employees and spouses went on to participate throughout the year in the wellness program which gave them points for exercise, annual preventive exams, attending educational seminars, completing a tobacco cessation program, and other healthy lifestyle choices. Seventy one employees met the required points to earn a health insurance premium reduction.


Ottawa is a member of the Kansas Eastern Regional Insurance Trust (KERIT), a workers’ compensation insurance pool. Each year, the City participates in the Preventing Loss Utilizing Safety (PLUS) program, which was developed for members of KERIT. This program sets goals and objectives for the organization to help maintain a safe working environment for employees. The City will receive a 5% reduction in premiums for 2013 due to the success of this program. Due to the insurance pool’s continued good performance, the City also received a dividend payment in 2012 of $25,730.84. We celebrate the most important assets of the City of Ottawa – our employees! The following pages detail some of the duties and accomplishments City staff achieve to ensure all Ottawans have a clean, safe and progressive community to call home. For additional information please call 785-229-3634 or visit

Finance/City Clerk

Scott Bird, Director of Finance • Carolyn Snethen, City Clerk The mission of the City Finance Department is to promote the effective and efficient use of financial resources; to protect City assets and to provide administrative, clerical and record keeping support for the City. The department provides information and recommendations on matters relating to taxation and licensing, implements adopted legislative measures and provides administrative support to carry out priorities as established by the Governing Body. This department acts as a collection point for all City revenues and distributes payment for all City expenditures. Major functions include: accounts payable; accounts receivable; debt issuance; utility billing; meter reading for approximately 6,300 electric and 5,100 water customers; receiving payments for utilities, fines and fees; enforced collection; donations for playgrounds and the Bark Park; parking permits; processing applications for Winter Utility Assistance; registration and licensing for retail sale of cereal malt beverage, alcohol and tobacco sales; dog registrations; licensing itinerant vendors, taxi services, pawnbrokers and payday loan businesses. In essence, the Finance Department supports all activities of the City of Ottawa, not only by maintaining accurate bookkeeping and accounting, but also by participating in a variety of ways related to grant opportunities, which brought almost $ 2.5 million to City improvements in 2012. Some of those opportunities include working with the Kansas Department of Transportation (KDOT) to assist in paying for street repairs and sidewalk and pathway improvements. With substantial assistance from the Federal Aviation Administration, the City reconstructed the main runway at the Municipal Airport. In addition, the City was able to receive 90% funding to purchase 54 acres south of the airport for future expansion of the new runway. Together, these two projects brought over $2.2 million of grant funding. Within the Finance Department, the City Clerk Division records official proceedings for all meetings of the Governing Body; maintains custody of minutes, resolutions, ordinances and other official records; prepares reports for and communicates with the City Manager and the Governing Body; coordinates the development of economic development tax exemption applications; and tracks special assessments and impact fees. In addition, this division provides access of open records information to the general public; works with individual citizens as well as local community groups, and assists in the development and receipt of petitions related to various community matters.

The Finance Department works with financial advisors to secure the best opportunities to finance various projects. In 2012, the Finance Department completed the long-term financing for the main hangar at the Municipal Airport and refinanced the Maris Des Cygnes River levee lining project. Upcoming activities which require funding include the Eastside Sewer Interceptor and the K-68/Davis Road Intersection projects. Both of these projects are scheduled for completion in 2013. Looking toward the future, the Finance Department will continue to seek avenues to secure the best opportunities to finance and support the goals and objectives of the City. In addition to administering grants, balancing funds and managing records for the Governing Body, the Finance Department also participates in community and professional efforts through activities such as Leadership Franklin County, First Friday Forums, the National Night Out Program, as well as educational presentations to the Kansas City Clerks Municipal Finance Officers Association, OHS Career Day and the recently developed City/County Budget Forum. For additional information please call 785-229-3600 or visit

Municipal Auditorium

Shonda Stitt, Administrative Manager Construction began in 1919 on the Ottawa Municipal Auditorium to honor those who lost their lives in World War I. Its continuing mission is to serve the community as a cultural, entertainment and educational facility. Ongoing activities include country music artist from local and national artist, the Ottawa Police Department’s McGruff Club events, local job training activities, private parties and receptions, school programs and more. Revenues to cover operational and maintenance expenses are predominantly derived from City property tax, supplemented by ticket sales and rental fees. In 2012 the Auditorium was full of activity, hosting productions that included Ottawa High School’s presentation fall and spring productions, as well as the OHS band and vocal concerts. The Auditorium hosted the Living Last Supper, the FFA annual Greenhand conference, the Franklin County Children’s Coalition Spring Fling and Winter Adventure, and dance recitals, Dale Reese’s Grand “O” Opry and Grace Gospel Church services, twice a week all year long. In 2012 the auditorium hosted 49 rentals, 169 days of usage with 17,532 patrons using the building throughout the year. The Auditorium is available for many types of private events as well as public performances. For additional information, please call 785-242-8810 or visit


Public Works Andy Haney, Director

The Public Works Department consists of Streets Division, Parks and Cemeteries Division and Fleet Management Division. The Ottawa Municipal Airport and Flood Control are facilitated by the Public Works Department, but are not staffed by City divisions. 2012 was another great year for the parks and green spaces of Ottawa. The City Tree Board again had the privilege of judging the Arbor Day Poster Contest. A tree was planted at Sacred Heart Elementary School to celebrate Arbor Day and to recognize (then) fifth-grader Tucker Mace for winning the poster contest. The Parks Division completed several projects in 2012, including the installation of new playground equipment in Forest Park; planted a new Mayor’s Christmas tree in Haley Park; and replaced shrubs and plants throughout Ottawa. Eleven new steel benches were installed at downtown corners by the Public Works Department. The pedestrian bridge at City Park was removed and replaced to facilitate bridge accessibility; this work was accomplished by City crews. The bridge deck over Possum Run in the alley between Hickory and Cedar Streets north of Logan was also reconstructed by City crews. A lot of activity occurred at the Ottawa Municipal Airport this year. A total of 3,570 daily operations (landings and/or take-offs) were reported for the year, and 2,297 gallons of aviation fuel were sold – even with a fourmonth period when the Airport was closed for runway reconstruction. The main runway was reconstructed by contractor Emery Sapp & Son, and the project was opened to the public on July 21. A well-attended ribbon cutting ceremony, held in conjunction with the Ottawa Area Chamber of Commerce, celebrated the completion of this $2.14 million project that was funded with a 95% FAA grant. In partnership with separate FAA funding, the City acquired approximately 54 acres immediately south of the Airport, providing necessary room for future


lengthening of the runway. The City also obtained a 95% grant to develop and implement airspace protection measures, providing additional safety for both aircraft and private properties. Ordinances passed by both the Ottawa City Commission and the Franklin County Commission will regulate height hazards in the vicinity of the Airport. LeMaster Aviation ceased operations at the Airport on December 14. The City has temporarily assumed operations, retaining two part-time LeMaster Aviation employees to assist with the transition. The Corps of Engineers did a periodic inspection of the levee surrounding the Marais des Cygnes River; this was the first inspection in approximately 30 years, but should occur every five years. The Corps noted our rating as Minimally Acceptable; we remain eligible for federal repair assistance with this rating. Issues discovered through the inspection process were few and minor, and were addressed by our City crews. Much work was accomplished to ready the intersection improvements project at K-68 & Davis Road. The project design was finalized, property necessary to complete the lane additions and other improvements was acquired, utilities worked to adjust their facilities appropriately, and Killough Construction was awarded the bid on the project. Significant grading and widening of Davis Road is necessary – please be aware that Davis Road will be closed to traffic during most of the construction period. City staff is working to develop the construction project schedule for 2013. For additional information, call 785-229-3630, or visit


Jim Bradley, Director The Utilities Department provides wastewater collection and treatment, electric generation and distribution, and water treatment and distribution services to the City of Ottawa. The Department also operates a warehouse that supports these services. Benefits of the City-owned utilities include better and local control over rates, responsiveness to the public, quality control, coordinated planning efforts with other City functions, and subsidization of some public services and activities using utility revenues. Combined, the utilities have 48 employees. Wastewater Collection and Treatment The wastewater plant, which began operating in 2004, continues to meet and exceed all State and Federal regulations. With a 2012 combined budget of $1.57 million, the 2.6 Million Gallon per Day (MGD) plant averaged treating .546 MGD. The Collection Division continues to make improvements to the collection system by replacing 1,000 feet of sanitary sewer lines and making emergency repairs, as well as assisted in the Cured-in-Place Piping repairs of 1.25 miles of sewer lines. The crews have cleaned and performed video inspections of over 10 miles of sewer lines during 2012. The Division progressed in developing the Eastside Interceptor Sewer Project which will start construction in 2013. Water Treatment and Distribution The City of Ottawa provided over 657 million gallons of treated water in 2012 to residences, businesses, three Rural Water Districts, and the City of Princeton. Staff takes pride in the fact that there have been no violations of State or Federal regulations since the plant opened in 1980. Plant staff continues to make upgrades to the plant in an effort to extend the life of the facilities. The Distribution Division continued to make improvements to the system by replacing and upgrading water lines and preparing for growth by providing inspection services to new subdivisions to ensure proper installation of the water infinfrastructure. During 2012, the Distribution crews replaced 6,218 feet of waterline throughout the City. Electric Generation and Distribution The Electric Distribution Division has provided for growth by extending services and undertaking an aggressive overhead line clearing program to help eliminate outages during storms; the addition of a backyard easement bucket helped facilitate this program. Nearly 148 million kilowatt hours were provided to our consumers, with over 99.9% reliability during 2012. The Power Plant operated its generation units over 540 hours during 2012. Major projects completed by Power Plant personnel have been the installation of emission controls on 4 diesel generation units to meet EPA RICE NESHAP (Reciprocating Internal Combustion Engine National Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants) regulations and the overhaul of the steam turbine on one combined-cycle turbine generation unit.

Utilities Warehouse The Utilities Warehouse maintains an inventory of spare and replacement parts to support the electrical, water distribution and wastewater collection systems. A major project completed in 2012 was the replacement of the warehouse heaters. For additional information, please call 785-229-3710, or visit



our clean, safe and progressive community Many great things happen in Ottawa that are noticed, and many things happen behind the scenes to make it possible to maintain a clean, safe and progressive community. Thanks to great citizens, volunteers, community partners and a collaborative spirit, together we achieve more than we could ever achieve alone. Ottawa is a community that respects tradition and diversity, and takes positive steps to protect both. We’ve managed to preserve our small, hometown atmosphere while fostering an environment for growth, opportunity and economic develop. Celebrate the richness of spirit that is Ottawa!

Fire Department Jeff Carner, Chief

The fire service in general has evolved from an OTTAWA FIRE RESPONSES 2012 2011 2010 _____________________________________________________________ organization whose primary responsibility was fire Building fires 29 15 21 suppression to an emergency services organization _____________________________________________________________ Vehicle fires 12 16 12 that provides fire suppression, fire prevention, fire __________________________________________________________________ Other fires 44 32 31 code enforcement, fire investigation, fire inspection, __________________________________________________________________ Over pressure rupture, overheat 3 6 3 plan review, emergency medical services, hazardous _____________________________________________________________ Rescue & emergency medical 969 836 919 materials mitigation and specialized rescue _____________________________________________________________ Hazardous conditions 56 86 74 operations. _____________________________________________________________________ During 2012, the Ottawa Fire Department (OFD) _____________________________________________________________________ Service calls 46 46 50 responded to 1,417 calls for service, up from previous _____________________________________________________________ Good intent calls 168 118 166 years. The greatest increase in calls for service was _____________________________________________________________ False alarms 89 101 106 in the area of emergency medical and rescue calls, up _____________________________________________________________________ Severe weather natural disaster 0 2 0 16% to 969 from 836. The community experienced Special type incident 1 2 1 an estimated $281,000 in total fire loss; reported fires _____________________________________________________________________ TOTAL CALLS 1417 1260 1383 were up – 29 in 2012 from 15 in 2011. This increase is largely a result of the changes in the reporting process, 2012 2011 2010 and not actually an increase in the number of building Estimated fire loss $281,270 $282,025 $269,250 fires. Quick response times are critical to the safety and well being of those in need. Modern-day materials used in our homes for furniture, toys, electronic appliances and decorative items can allow a fire to double in size every minute, allowing flashover to occur in less than ten minutes. Flashover is defined as a rapid (typically less than one minute) transition from a localized, growing fire to a fully-developed stage in which all combustibles in the room are involved. We are again pleased to report that our response times are well below national averages. One of the best ways to combat fires is to prevent them from occurring in the first place. A significant amount of OFD resources are used for fire prevention activities, with the objective of reducing the risk from fires through incident reduction and control, and through the limitation of fire severity. During 2012, the OFD presented 134 fire and life safety education programs throughout the community. Through these programs, the department had contact with 4,675 members of the community, both children and adults. The lives and property of everyone in a community can be threatened by fire, and the OFD believes that everyone can play a role in fire prevention. These education programs encompass a wide variety of topics to help educate the community about the risks of fire and ways to prevent them and reduce the severity of an incident. Included in these programs is an emphasis on the importance of having and maintaining an adequate number of smoke detectors. SMOKE DETECTORS SAVE LIVES. The OFD continues to offer a program providing free smoke detectors; installation is also available; 81 smoke detectors were distributed and/or installed during 2012. This program previously had been funded through the American Red Cross; Leadership Franklin County championed this cause in 2012 and provided a mechanism to continue this program for several more years. Another significant component in our goal to minimize the risk of life and property loss from fire is conducting fire safety inspections. Inspections provide an opportunity to educate the owners or occupants of a building about fire-safe behavior and the need for adequate fire and life safety conditions in the areas under their control. During 2012, the OFD conducted 740 annual inspections. It is our strong belief when inspection programs are properly designed and put into practice, benefit is achieved through public education and awareness. A key element to a successful fire service is the type and level of training. Fire personnel receive their training and education in many ways and from a variety of sources. During the calendar year, OFD members participated in 4,182 documented hours of training. The hard work and dedication of the members of the OFD are the reason for all of the successes that we have achieved this year. They have demonstrated that through doing your best, doing the right things, and caring about the people we serve, great things can be accomplished towards reaching our goal of making Ottawa a safer place to live, work, and visit. For additional information, please call 785-229-3700 or visit


Police Department Dennis Butler, Chief

During 2012, the Ottawa Police Department operated with an authorized strength of 27 sworn police officers and 5 civilian employees, operating within a budget of $2.14 million. Primary services include 24-hour police patrol, criminal investigations (including drug enforcement), D.A.R.E. programs, animal control, and robust community outreach. Except for temporary periods with grant-funded positions, the number of sworn officers has increased by only one sworn position during the past 20 years, when the Animal Control Officer position was reclassified as a Community Services Officer (CSO). Calls for service, such as investigating crimes, traffic accidents, conducting traffic enforcement and serving warrants, have increased 38% since 2004, including a 7.5% increase from 2011 to 2012. Looking over the past four years in this same category, calls for service have increased 53%, and we expect these measurable police services and activities to continue trending upward. Despite the increased workload, Ottawa is much safer. Serious crime, Part I crime as reported to the FBI, includes the categories of arson, aggravated assault, battery, burglary, murder, rape, robbery, theft and auto theft. These types of crimes declined by 44% from 2004 to 2012, but spiked with a 15% increase over the previous year during 2012. Although there were slight increases in violent crime in 2012, most of the increase in crime was due to theft – including identity theft. During 2012, all combined crime categories (includes Part I crime and less serious crime) decreased marginally when compared with 2011 from 2,142 to 2,130 offenses. Other, less serious, crime dropped 5% during 2012 from 1,641 to 1,552 offenses. All crime is reported as having occurred, even if it was attempted and ultimately unsuccessful. Shrinking sources of federal and state funding limit our past ability to expand and improve services. The School Resource Officer was eliminated after a grant expired in July 2011, but we continue to explore solutions with USD2 90 to resume the SRO program in some form, especially in the aftermath of the Newtown, Connecticut school shootings. As part of these efforts, joint safety training was conducted with the Franklin County Sheriff’s department in USD 290 schools. Mini-grants allowed the department to purchase new equipment, such as ballistic vests and partial funding of in-car video cameras.

In June, 2012, the police department officially began the voluntary process to become nationally accredited through the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA®). Nationwide, less than 4% of law enforcement agencies are accredited, with only six in Kansas. Accreditation challenges organizations to seek and achieve, objectively verify, and maintain high quality operations through periodic evaluations conducted by an independent, nongovernmental body. To learn more go to The Police Department’s volunteer unit, Volunteers in Police Service (VIPS) continued to provide outstanding service to our community. VIPS and reserve police officers volunteered 1,889 hours of unpaid service in 2012. Focus on community outreach remains strong. The 31st Annual McGruff Club focused on safety programs through live entertainment, and is well attended by both children and parents. For the 27th straight year, the Police department participated in a Special Olympics fundraiser. For the second consecutive year, the City participated in National Night Out, an event designed to foster better relationships between citizens and all City departments and elected officials. The 27th Annual D.A.R.E. Camp hosted 84 incoming sixth graders from USD 290, continuing a trend of high participation. The Ottawa Police Foundation (OPF) is a private non-profit corporation 501(c)(3) created to support the mission of the Police Department. The OPF funds our annual D.A.R.E Camp and provides partial funding for accreditation. Also, it funds a safety initiative at Ottawa High School named Seatbelts are for Everyone (SAFE); during the 2011-2012 school year, seatbelt usage among OHS students increased from 61% to 81%. Go to to learn more about OPF plans to provide continued enhancement of City police services. For additional information, please call 785-242-2561, or visit


Information Technology Chuck Bigham, Director

The Information Technology (IT) Department consists of the Director, an IT Specialist, and a Multimedia Specialist, and fully supports all City departments, including well over 175 network-attached devices including PC workstations, notebooks, servers and printers. IT also supports City databases such as storm/event trouble tickets and dispatch, cemetery records, storm water management, pavement management, fire calls and administrative records, building permits, fleet management, police car video and more. The department continued to work with the Franklin County IT department, including support for the Records Management System (RMS), including Mobile Computing, utilized collectively by the Ottawa Police Department, the Franklin County Sheriff’s department and Wellsville Police Department. With feedback from each City department and the public, The IT Department developed and launched a new City website: In addition to department information, City ordinances and other critical information, complete electronic agenda packets for City Commission Study Sessions and Regular Meetings are now available in one convenient place, along with meeting minutes and video files (when available).This update makes it easier for the user to find information, provides a nicer look and feel, and allows the page to be managed and updated in house, allowing for a very economical tool to help the City connect with the public. The City also continues to support its own Facebook page: has

improved our communication with citizens about City services, and allows citizens to ask questions or report concerns to the City in real time. The multimedia Government Access Channel (GAC) continued to expand programming throughout the year. Film footage of community events continued to be a big part of the GAC, and the DVD collection of area events continued to grow. Community events such as the 2012 Ol’ Marais River Run and Power of the Past Antique Engine and Tractor Show are captured with in-house production services, producing professional quality DVDs for event sponsors and public purchase. City Commission Meetings, Legislative Coffees, Candidate Forums, and Quarterly Image Awards are some of the other events videoed and broadcast for the community to view through Allegiance Cable or via the Internet utilizing the City’s webpage. We continued our virtualization efforts with our PC servers replacing most of our separate servers, saving power, space and cost while improving performance and simplifying support. Data backup was improved with the addition of an additional network storage device. After being implemented last year, a trouble ticket help desk continued to be used to document, track and manage support saving time and improving response time. For additional information, please call 785-229-3641 or visit:

Municipal Court

James Campbell, Judge • Joyce Hendrix, Prosecutor The City of Ottawa operates a part-time Municipal Court using a part-time Judge, City Prosecutor, full-time Court Clerk, and is aided by volunteers from the VIPS (Volunteers in Police Service). The jurisdiction of the Municipal Court is authorized by the City Commission to hear and decide specific kinds of cases. Municipal Courts have jurisdiction in misdemeanor criminal cases where the maximum sentence is one year in jail and a fine of not more than $2,500. The Municipal Court adjudicates misdemeanor crimes, and traffic cases, and is located in the Law Enforcement Center. Persons who receive a traffic ticket may plead guilty and pay the citation without a court appearance, unless a court appearance is required and listed on the ticket by the issuing officer. New technology now permits tickets to be paid by telephone with a credit card, online, and continues via mail, or in person at the


Municipal Court Clerk’s Office at the Law Enforcement Center, 715 W. Second Street. Persons who wish to plead not guilty to the charge or charges, or plead guilty but explain the circumstances, should appear in court on the date of appearance indicated on the citation. City police and other staff filed 1,788 cases in 2012. The court operated with a 2012 annual budget of $163,807, and receives administrative and operational support from police employees. In 2010, the Municipal Court implemented a court management software system that continues to benefit court operations, through reduced personnel costs after eliminating one full-time employee. For additional information, please call 785-242-5333, or visit

Planning & Codes Wynndee S. Lee, Director

Most years, the major activity of the Planning & Codes Department is development, whether subdividing, developing new commercial or industrial sites, or applications for all sorts of building permits. While economic conditions were still sluggish in 2012, several new projects in the community were completed and others begun. Some of these projects include Gun Guys, Luigi’s Italian Restaurant, Short Stop, DIY Supply, and Bella Cucina. Total permits issued for new construction or remodeling permits were valued at $7.9 million. New residential building permits continued to be low, with only two single-family units and no multifamily units constructed. Sidewalk, bike and trail projects were highlights of 2012, engaging staff in the writing, administering and design work for these projects. The KDOT grant for sidewalks on West 15th Street was completed and then also selected for an award for the project that installed sidewalks and bike paths on both sides of the street from the Prairie Spirit Rail Trail to Eisenhower Road. Another big grant award for our community was the Safe Routes to School projects, a collaborative plan between the City of Ottawa, USD 290 and other community partners. The project was completed in 2012 and included sidewalk construction near

schools in these locations: 900 and 1000 blocks of the west side of South Ash Street; west side of the 1500 block of Osage Drive; 1000 through the 1200 blocks of the east side of North Cherry Street; and the north side of Thirteenth Street between the Prairie Spirit Rail Trail and College Street. In addition, funds were utilized to do a variety of “infill” sidewalks in areas where gaps had been identified in the sidewalk system. Work also began on new funding opportunities for 2013 for additional projects. Staff are involved with several projects including playground funding to replace the Timber Playground in Forest Park, Play City affiliation, received the grant-funded Imagination Playground In a Box, and developing a Dog Park within Ottawa. Additional grant funds have been awarded to build two homes in 2013 on land the City owns, which will be sold to low-income residents through the Neighborhood Stabilization Program. Community outreach projects include the Home & Garden Show, Building Month, and Planning Month. The annual National Community Planning Month photo contest was held in October and 49 photos showcased some of the best of Ottawa. This has become a continuing event, so start taking photos now of favorite places, seasons and locations in Ottawa!

For additional information, please call 785-229-3620, or visit

Ottawa Library Ottawa Library strives to inform and enrich the community by providing access to information and opportunities to the public through use of our materials and programs. NExpress, the online shared circulation system, has increased the speed of receipt of requested material from the other libraries, as well as allowed patrons to check account status, place holds on materials, and renew books online. The NExpress Shared Catalog currently includes a network of 40 Kansas libraries which share material between one another. Total circulation of materials was 133,966 items in 2012. Interlibrary Loan materials, materials borrowed from or sent to non NExpress libraries, totaled 34,130. At year end we had 11,258 registered Ottawa Library card holders. The Ottawa Library renovation was completed in 2011. We have increased our computers available for patron use to 30 and compiled 25,663 uses in 2012. Staff work spaces were improved as well as the display of magazines and newspapers in our reference area. The young adult area, “The Cave”, has been a very popular hangout for teens. Adults love the space, too, and are encouraged to enjoy it during school hours. Our library is attractive and very user friendly.

Ottawa Library continually upgrades and improves our technology to provide the best service possible. The library provides access to Kansas EZ Books, which connects users to audio books and eBooks. Our website provides links to: applying for unemployment, Learning Express Library, IRS tax forms, Kansas tax forms, as well as several other online research tools. Our website also keeps patrons current on our many library activities and programs. The Friends of the Ottawa Library netted $5,294 in used book sales, and memberships added over $1,825 in benefits to the Library. The Friends also sponsored our second annual 5K Run/ Walk fundraiser that raised $481. Ottawa Library is a community library that links everyone to free educational, informational and entertainment resources through responsive quality service to support lifelong learning. Please visit the library to check out our new books, movie DVDs, music CDs, and books on tape or to participate in any of our Adult, Young Adult, or Children programs. For additional information, please call the Library at 785-242-3080 or visit:


Governing Body Blake Jorgensen, Mayor

2012-2013 Ottawa City Commission: (from left) Commissioner Linda Reed, Mayor Pro Tem Sara Caylor, Mayor Blake Jorgensen, Commissioner Gene Ramsey, and Commissioner Jeff Richards.

The City Commission is the legislative and policy-making body of the City of Ottawa. All meetings are held at City Hall, 101 S. Hickory. Regular City Commission meetings are held on the first Wednesday of each month at 7:00 pm, and on the third Wednesday at 9:30 am. The City Commission also meets on Monday afternoons at 4:00 pm for a work/study session. All meetings are open to the public. Five commissioners are elected at-large by the citizens of Ottawa. The Mayor, chosen by the Commissioners each year, serves as “the first, among equals.” The Mayor presides at Commission meetings, serves as the spokesperson for the community, as an ambassador and defender of the community, and as a representative in intergovernmental relations. The City Manager is hired by the City Commission to oversee the day-to-day operations of the City and serves as the CEO of the City. The Manager supervises all daily activities of the City and reviews and oversees the department operations. Together, the Mayor, Commissioners and City Manager form a policy development and management team.

City Manager’s Office

Richard U. Nienstedt, City Manager I continue to be pleased and honored to serve as your City Manager. I hope that you will agree that your City Commissioners and employees are dedicated to creating a vibrant, growing community which is a great place to live, work and play in every day of the year. We are dedicated to maintaining a strong and sustainable community for not only the current citizens but also for those of the future. Whatever successes the City Commission and employees have during the year are a direct result of committed and supportive citizens and business owners that work to build the strength and vitality of our City on a daily basis. You stay aware of local and regional issues; many of you participate in community forums such as Legislative Coffees and regular City Commission meetings. You graciously welcome guests and visitors, including those who attend some of the great Ottawa events, such as the Over the Road Gang’s Ol’ Marias River Run and the Power of Past Antique Engine and Tractor Show. The combined efforts and attitudes of all components of the City of Ottawa (citizens, business owners, City employees and our elected officials) come together to create an atmosphere of sharing, participation and


fellowship – a true sense of community. This is your local government, and we appreciate your participation and encourage you to be an informed and active member of our community.

City of O�awa PO Box 60 101 S. Hickory O�awa, KS 66067

Phone: 785-229-3637 Fax: 785-229-3639 www.o��awaks

Ottawa City Report 2012  

Report for City of Ottawa

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you