City approves budget

The Sabetha City Commission met at 6 p.m. Monday, July 24, at Sabetha City Hall. Present for the meeting were Mayor Cody Bletscher, Commissioners Norm Schmitt, Nick Aberle and Maridel Wittmer, City Administrator Doug Allen, Assistant City Administrator Bill Shroyer, City Clerk Steve Compo, and Sabetha Police Chief Robert Wahwasuck. The only guest present was Megan Bunck. Commissioner Julie Burenheide was not present for the meeting.

Mayor Bletscher opened the public hearing for the State Budget Hearing. With no public comment, Mayor Bletscher closed the public hearing. Following the public hearing, the commissioners approved the budget. Allen commented that this is the lowest mill levy the city has had since 2003.

Police Report

Chief Wahwasuck presented his written report to the commissioners. The report is as follows:


Wahwasuck reported that there have been five dog calls since June 7.

One call was for a dog at large, where city personnel or an officer responded. The dog was picked up and impounded.

One call was for a dog at large, where city personnel or an officer discovered the dog. The dog was able to be caught and put back in their outdoor kennel.

One call was for a barking dog, where an officer responded and investigated. No barking dog was found in the area reported. The officer contacted the suspected owner of the source of the complaint. The owner stated the dog is let out to use the restroom for a brief amount of time before being kenneled inside for the night. The owner was advised that however brief, neighbors are complaining and they need to try and do something to keep it from happening.

One call was for a vicious dog, where an officer responded. The dog had already returned home and was inside. No wounds from the incident required treatment, and the case was filed with the prosecutor.

One call was for animal neglect, where an officer responded. There were no criminal signs of neglect documented. The initial reports were unfounded.


1322 Roosevelt St.: Unfit structure, maintenance and repair. Ready for abatement. The garage is the remaining issue as other parts of the house repair/removal have been made. Hearing for the structure is set.

523 N. 14th St.: Unfit structure. Ready for abatement. Owners have contacted a company to make the repairs.

401 Ohio St.: Blight premise. Ready for abatement.

502 N. Ninth St.: Two junk motor vehicles, and nuisance property. Junk vehicles ready for resolution and removal. Ready for resolution and abatement.

317 S. Fifth St.: Junk motor vehicle, weeds and household trash, blight premise, animal confines, unfit structure. Weeds and structure were abated. Vehicle remains and is ready for resolution and abatement.

517 S. 11th St.: Junk motor vehicle, ready for resolution and abatement.

308 S. 13th St.: Three junk vehicles, two of the three have been abated by the owner with the third in process of resolution.

520 S. Seventh St.: Unfit structure, remains in process. Ready for resolution and abatement.

1003 Harrison St.: Junk motor vehicle, abated by owner.

605 Oregon St.: Three junk motor vehicles. In process.

914 Virginia St.: Weeds (2), at said location as well as empty lot on Jefferson St.


Increased lake patrols continue. The reports of individuals creating disturbances at the lakes have slowed down.

Our dispatcher on leave has returned, we are happy to have them back. Our part-time dispatcher continues to pick up shifts and help a lot, we are grateful to have them.

We have accepted one officer’s two-week notice. We wish them well moving forward in their endeavors. They do maintain an interest in staying on in a part time capacity and administration continues that discussion.

The Rodeo parade went well, with not a lot of calls stemming from the Rodeo itself.

The department’s 2024 training year began on July 1. We have already had an officer attend some training with more scheduled shortly. The goal is to get most of the officer’s training requirements completed earlier in the year.

We are looking at the start of the 2024 School year beginning soon, which means sports, dances, school patrol and interaction.

Following his report, the commissioners asked if the Sabetha Police Department could pay more attention to people rolling through stop signs, and speed checks on Sixth Street.

Aberle discussed some ideas for Old Highway 75 and potentially reducing the speed limit from 40 to 30 miles per hour. He also mentioned the idea of changing Old Highway 75 from a four lane to a two lane with two middle turning lanes.

Aberle also asked about repainting the lines at the intersection of Old Highway 75 and 192nd Road.

Also at the meeting:

The commissioners approved the minutes from the July 10 meeting.

The commissioners approved Wage Resolution No. 2023-18 for Douglas Brammer as a part-time police officer.

The commissioners approved Wage Resolution No. 2023-19 for Quillan Houser as a part-time police officer.

The next meeting will be held at 6 p.m. Monday, Aug. 14, at Sabetha City Hall.

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