Kiosk to be purchased for Sabetha, Albany cemeteries

The Sabetha City Commission has approved purchasing a kiosk for the Sabetha and Albany cemeteries at the price of $30,200. This decision was made at the Monday, Dec. 14, commission meeting.

Present for the meeting was Mayor Doug Clark, Commissioners Norm Schmitt, Nick Aberle, Maridel Wittmer and Julie Burenheide, City Administrator Doug Allen, Assistant City Administrator Bill Shroyer, and City Clerk Steve Compo. Guests present with the Sabetha Cemetery Board were Mary Ryan, Scott Aberle, Jim Johnson, Vicki Edelman, Von and Jerre Lauer, Greg Mock, Dennis Stones and John Mowder.

Cemetery Kiosk

The Sabetha Cemetery Board members presented the quote for the kiosk from Windy Prairie Systems. The purpose of the kiosk is to assist people in locating their loved ones.

The initial cost for setting up the kiosk – which will be located in the Sabetha Cemetery – will be $30,200. With the current plan, the single kiosk will house records of up to four cemeteries, which will include the Sabetha and Albany cemeteries, and Sabetha’s additional cemetery.

S. Aberle said, currently, the only record of who is buried in each plot and who has purchased plots are kept in two books – one for Sabetha and one for Albany.

“We keep them [the books] at Aberle Ford,” Aberle said. “If we have a fire at Aberle Ford, we’re done. We have nothing backed up.”

The cemetery board members explained that while the kiosk will be located at the Sabetha Cemetery, people also will be able to access the records on their smart phones or computers. The kiosk also has the capability of keeping obituaries on file, as well as awards veterans received during their time of service.

The cemetery board members also said that the kiosk is designed to withstand the outdoor elements, however, constructing a small building to cover the kiosk would be a future idea.

The board asked the city commission to cover the initial upfront cost for the project of $30,200, as well as building a concrete pad and running electricity and an internet line to the kiosk. The cemetery board said they would cover the yearly maintenance fee of $2,300 after that.

After discussion, the board voted in favor of the proposal.

Midtown Land

Allen presented an email to the commissioners regarding the Midtown land. Allen said he had someone contact him who was interested in purchasing the land for the purpose of building a retail store similar to Dollar General. After discussion, the commissioners decided to not pursue the proposal, due to it being a retail store in the middle of a residential neighborhood.

Also at the meeting:

The commissioners approved the minutes from the Nov. 23 meeting.

The commissioners approved Resolution 2020-20, a Wage Resolution establishing raises for full-time employees. They decided to give a 3 percent raise, as well as merit raises.

The commissioners decided to table the resolution for Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILOT) Waiver for the High Rise Apartments. After discussion, the commission decided to have the city work up a new resolution that would approve the PILOT Waiver for five years. They will review this resolution at the Dec. 28 meeting.

The commissioner also approved the holiday schedule for city employees, which gives them half days off on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve.

The commissioners asked for an update on the tearing down the Midtown building. Allen said that they are waiting on Herrmann Earth Moving, who is currently working on the Apostolic Christian Home project. Allen said he would follow up with Herrmann Earth Moving again.

The commissioners also asked for an update on selling the Midtown Apartments. Before the COVID-19 pandemic hit the United States, the City of Sabetha had someone interested in purchasing the apartments, but it has been over a year since that happened. Allen said they are still waiting to hear from the Rural Development Association, to see if they can sell the apartments.

The commissioners will meet again at 6 p.m. Monday, Dec. 28, at Sabetha City Hall.

Heather Stewart213 Posts

Heather Stewart is a reporter for The Sabetha Herald, where she has been on staff since 2015. She specializes in court and sports reporting, as well as photography. Heather is a 2011 Kansas State University graduate with a degree in psychology. She lives in Sabetha with her husband.

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