Vol. 1, Issue 8                                                                              November  2016
Cost Savings and New Looks
There is more good news in Sedgwick County!  Just last week, Sedgwick County celebrated another long overdue milestone. We came together to cut the ribbon on a new (to us) facility.  The vision for this project started decades ago and now it’s finally open. 

In 2014, Commissioners made a decision to purchase the former IRS building at 271 W. 3rd St. in Wichita.  Then a few weeks ago, the commission wanted to give the building some personality and unanimously voted to name it The Ronald Reagan Building. It is perfectly located right across the street from Wichita City Hall. 

This consolidated office demonstrates once again, another healthy working partnership between Sedgwick County and the City of Wichita. Co-locating Planning with Metropolitan Area Building and Construction enhances efficiency which saves taxpayer dollars as well as provides streamlined customer service for the users. 

When the building was considered for purchase in 2014, the total cost for the purchase including financing, refurbishment and furnishing was estimated to be nearly $21 million. We made a choice to use existing equipment and furnishings to fill the building. We also reduced the cost of bonding by using some cash.  In the end, we were able to reduce the total cost to about $10.8 million saving the difference in our Capital Improvement Project (CIP) budget.  

Last week we also voted to upgrade the County Courthouse lobby to construct a place to house security lockers. This transition zone will cost about $64,000 and provides a safe place for people to lock up a personal firearm.  

What I found interesting was the fact that spending $64,000 in CIP was widely reported but saving $10.2 million in CIP was not.   Saving $10.2 million was a tremendous accomplishment. Spending $64,000 to enable citizens the right to protect themselves when traveling to a government facility is a great balance between citizen’s right to protect themselves and the government’s responsibility provide adequate security measures in our facilities.  Taken together, we still saved about $10.15 million. 

As your commissioner, I was elected to defend your Constitutional right to protect yourself and provide for your safety.  I’m also doing what I can to make Sedgwick County an efficient and effective government that’s fiscally responsible.

Hopefully, you will appreciate the good news as well as my continued commitment to these principles. Let me know what you think. 

Commissioners Welcome New Facility

On Oct. 11, City of Wichita and County officials participated in a joint ceremony to formally open the Ronald Reagan Building to the public.  The first three floors of this building house Metropolitan Area Building and Construction, Metropolitan Area Planning, and Wichita Area Metropolitan Planning Organization.  Plans for the top three floors have not been publicly finalized. 

Get Out and Vote!

Registered voters can avoid polling places on Election Day, Nov. 8, by voting early.  In Sedgwick County, voters can cast their ballot at the Election Office at 510 N. Main from now until the Monday before the General Election.  Beginning Nov. 1, additional polling sites will be open throughout Sedgwick County. Additional details about Early Voting can be found here

If you choose to go to your polling place on Election Day, be sure to use the polling place locator to confirm which place you should go to. It can be found here. Type in your home address to make sure you go to the right polling place. 

County Offices to Close for Holidays
Sedgwick County offices will be closed on Friday, Nov. 11 in honor of Veterans Day.  Offices will close again on Thursday, Nov. 24 and Friday, Nov. 25 for Thanksgiving.  Emergency services will be available by calling 9-1-1. 

Invitation to Participate

As your commissioner, I hope you will consider attending one of the Sedgwick County Commission meetings. You may sign up here to receive the meeting agenda in an email prior to each meeting.   If you choose to attend a commission meeting, please know, we invite our visitors to take an active role in the meeting by speaking on any agenda item.  I want to share these opportunities with you to help us make the best decisions for Sedgwick County!  

This month, commissioners will meet on Nov. 2, Nov. 14, and Nov. 30. These meetings will begin at 9 a.m. in the County Courthouse (525 N. Main, third floor).  

Join our Team!
Are you interested in a career in public service? Check out our openings:

525 N. Main, Ste 320, Wichita, KS 67203

Contact Public Information Officer:
Kate Flavin, 316-660-9370
525 N. Main, Ste 343, Wichita, KS 67203

Contact Corporate Communications Manager:
Keturah Austin, 316-660-9370
525 N. Main, Ste 343, Wichita, KS 67203