In the wake of the school shooting in Sandy Hook, Conn. last month, the topic of school security was addressed at the Salina Town meeting Jan. 8.
Police Chief Vince Stoyanoski said he would attend the school board meeting Jan. 14 to discuss security options.
“I’ve already started patrolling the school more, having lunch with the kids, and making foot patrols at the school. I’ve also been taking measurements and notes for further officer response training,” Stoyanoski said. He said school budget restraints are a factor in more security. One of his recommendations was to take old utility poles and cut them to size and place them as a perimeter around the school to prevent a would be assailant from ramming the buildings. He wants to coordinate a plan with the schools to respond to an emergency. Immediate plans are to lock down the schools with one access point and a higher police presence on campus.
Town librarian Lou Ella Martin reported the library received a $2,830 grant from the state. “We get it in portions. Every year, libraries in Oklahoma get a grant according to population,” Martin said. Martin did not have specific plans for spending the money.
The board approved elections for town officers. Filing for office will be on Feb. 4 to 6. The election will take place on April 2. Mayor Darrell Blaylock, Vice Mayor Michael O’Rourke and Councilman Jim Hoag are up for election.
A lease agreement with the Salina Area Chamber of Commerce was tabled until the next meeting. The chamber has offices in the old city hall. Until last year, the space located at 101 S. Cherokee St. was used as the Boys & Girls Club of Salina. One side of the building faces Ferry Street.
The council approved a request by Blaylock for the town to have online banking for all accounts with Lakeside Bank of Salina.
Stoyanoski reported on some properties in town which need to be cleaned. These properties include: 315 N. Fountain St., 511 S. Whittington St., 103 S. Whittington St., 203 S. Whittington St., 205 S. Whittington St., 216 S. Colvard St. and 308 N. Grace St.
TK’s Wrecker lot has been cleaned. The fence line has been partially cleaned. Some cars have to be held for 90 days to be picked up by the owner or for the insurance companies.
Properties not improved include the northwest corner of Fountain and Frontier Streets, the yellow trailer at Pierce and Ross Streets, the southwest corner of Commerce and Carl Streets and 303 E. Ferry St. (Bailey’s Tire). Stoyanoski said the owner of Bailey’s Tire has been vocal about not being in compliance with the town code. The owner said he cannot do anything until he gets tanks removed. He is planning to install a privacy fence to conceal his stock of tires. Stoyanoski said he warned the owner if he does not comply with code he will be given a citation.
Rose Carnes’ property on Commerce Street has some improvement, but still needs more work. The owner of the property at 710 N. Saltwell St. needs to be given a citation. Stoyanoski said he has been unable to reach the owner of that property.
Stoyanoski said one of the mobile police computers needs to be shipped to Oklahoma City for repair to the hard drive. There is no charge for repair.
The police cars have new fire extinguishers. One 2007 Dodge Charger police car has a leaky seal around the water pump. An engine is available with approximately 10,000 miles which will fit a 2007 Charger.
“I’m a little leery as they’re going out of business and moving to Florida in several months,” Stoyanoski said. “I’m not sure about any warranty work on it if we get it from them. I’m trying to find other options in our area since they’re going out of business.”
In old business, Councilman Morton Gann asked about the Grand Gateway Community Develop-ment Block Grant of $36,000. Town Clerk P.J. Pape said the grant is used for mapping all the towns assets including water lines, streets, buildings, and others.
“If a water line is 15 years old and we know it can only last for 20 years, we will know to apply for a new grant to replace it in another five years,” Pape said.