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The Rundown – City approves Safehope expansion project

Post Date:01/24/2019 12:05 PM

The Rundown is prepared by the City of Newton Public Information Office to summarize the City Commission meeting and does not represent official Commission minutes.

7 p.m. January 22, 2019, Newton City Commission meeting

At Tuesday night’s meeting, the City Commission approved a Special Use Permit for Safehope to expand its domestic violence shelter and advocacy operations.

The SUP will allow for a general group residence at 205 E. Fourth St. and 316 N. Oak, the former Health Department building that Safehope currently leases. Safehope plans to purchase both properties for a planned expansion to support its existing services as well as new programs geared toward reaching underserved victims in rural communities across Harvey, Marion and McPherson counties.

The new shelter will accommodate 30 beds, with an extra 2,400 square feet of space. At the current 10-bed shelter, residents often must sleep on cots or air mattresses in common areas. The new facility will also have a secured parking area and enclosed outdoor play area for children.

Senior housing project

The Commission approved a resolution of support for a proposed new senior housing project and its application for state tax credits. Red-Wood Development proposes to build the senior housing on 6.74 acres on the west side of Summer Crossing Addition.

The project includes 60 units, with a portion of those to be income-qualified and the rest to be market rate. They would be single-story buildings faced in brick or stone and will include a clubhouse with a kitchen, workout facility, library and office. 

Requested rezoning of the property is scheduled to be heard by the Planning Commission on Feb. 4 and the City Commission on Feb. 12. The Commission’s resolution of support acknowledges the community’s need for this type of housing, regardless of its location. If the rezoning is not approved, an alternate site would have to be found for the project.

Community recognition

The Commission recognized Chisholm Middle School’s 7th- and 8th-grade Scholars Bowl teams, who both took first place in the Pioneer League.

In other action, the City Commission:

  1. Approved a request to close Athletic Park Circle on April 6 for the Newton Bible Christian School Eagle 5K.
  2. Approved an agreement with Rural Water District #1 for acquisition of a water line out to Newton City/County Airport.
  3. Approved a resolution authorizing funding for renovation of the Law Enforcement Center.
  4. Received the Convention & Visitors Bureau year-end report.
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