Lifeguard training has begun to staff Maring Aquatic Center

Lifeguard training started Monday and the Interim Chanute City Manager told commissioners Monday evening he expects to have enough staff to open the Maring Aquatic Center July 3.

In his report at Monday evening’s commission meeting, Interim City Manager Todd Newman said officials received 27 to 28 applications for lifeguard at the pool this season. They narrowed the field to 23 applicants, 13 of whom showed up Monday to begin training.

With the previous six lifeguards qualified, Newman expects to have 19 lifeguards, and a total staff of 30 to 31 people including those who will do cleaning and sanitizing.

During the business agenda, commissioners approved Newman’s recommendation to cut the rates for season passes in half because of the shortened season. Season passes normally cost $40 for youth ages 4 through 17, $55 for adults age 18 and older, and $150 for families of up to four members.

Commissioners also approved the application and plan for the Community Development Block Grant program to assist businesses impacted by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Chanute Regional Development Authority and Southeast Kansas Regional Planning Commission Director Matt Godinez presented the application and guidelines for the assistance grants. He said the funds would be capped at $10,000 per business to allow the city help as many businesses as possible.

He also said CRDA wants businesses to get applications from the office, rather than attempt to fill them out online. The commission approved CRDA to provide applications until 5 pm July 10 and accept them until 5 pm July 13, later than what CRDA board approved. Godinez said the additional time will help process each application.

“We want to go through it with many fine-toothed combs,” he said.

Outside agency funding

Commissioners approved 2020 and 2021 contracts with Main Street Chanute, along with approving the release of funds to other outside agencies.

The commission has budgeted $94,000 from the city’s general fund for the Chanute Art Gallery, Chanute Historical Society, FireEscape Coffeehouse, Main Street Chanute, and Safari Museum. Commissioners also adjusted the already-approved allocation to Main Street Chanute for Christmas lights downtown to come from TGT funds rather than the general fund. The commission also changed the renewal date for the Main Street Chanute contract to Aug. 31 from January 1 and decided to pay Main Street in one lump-sum payment rather than four quarterly payments.

Commissioners approved a request for the July Fourth celebration at Santa Fe Park to sell and serve alcohol. They approved resolutions to declare properties at 1101 N. Steuben, owned by Michael Powell of Bentonville, Ark.; 1105 N. Steuben, owned by Brion Dinkel; and 1219 N. Washington, owned by Richard Bilbe, in violation of city code.

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