September 18, 2014

Police officer trains for inspection duties

Danedri Thompson
dthompson@gardnernews.com
Robert Huff is watching the trucks that race through town.
The 8-year veteran of the Gardner Police Department recently attended training that will allow him to rigorously inspect truck traffic, and hopefully insure that the trucks passing through town are safe and under maximum weight.
His training, provided free of charge by the Kansas Highway Patrol, was designed to increase the safety of Gardner residents by conducting regular safety inspections of trucks passing through.
There are three levels of truck inspection, and thanks to the 80-hour training, Huff is qualified to conduct inspections at the highest level, he told city council members on July 1.
“It’s not like your normal traffic stop,” Huff said. “They are very thorough.”
At a minimum, a truck inspection takes 15 to 20 minutes. The most basic inspection includes an examination of the driver’s license and log book. The second level of inspection includes a walk around the truck and examination of lighting and outer parts of the vehicle. That inspection takes up to 60 minutes. The highest level of inspection adds an examination of brakes and frame of the truck. It can take as long as 90 minutes.
The goal of the inspections is to ensure that the trucks traveling through town are doing so safely.
Once the intermodal opens, officials anticipate as many as 7,000 trucks per day will pass through Gardner.
“With construction, we’ve already seen a massive increase in truck traffic,” Huff said.
Council member Larry Fotovich said he would like to change the truck routes through town, specifically by getting rid of Gardner Road as a listed route. However, new police chief Gerry Cullumber said changing the truck routes might not make a difference.
“That’s not always been the easiest answer. I really think we have to consider the feasibility of that,” Cullumber said. “Not everyone will obey the law.”
Truck drivers earn their wages when the truck is moving, so the threat of lengthy traffic stops may limit the number of trucks through town.
That could help save Gardner’s roads, Huff explained.
A five-axle commercial vehicle weighs as much as 30 cars, but impacts the road as much as several hundred vehicles.
“Through strict enforcement, we can hopefully deter overweight trucks from traveling through Gardner,” Huff said.
Huff’s training did not include weighing trucks, and the police department would need to purchase portable scales to do so. Officials estimate a scale would cost $30,000, and a portable scale is not listed in the proposed city budget for 2014.
Truck violation fines are currently $150. The fines are not designed to be money makers.
“It’s public safety and road maintenance,” council member Heath Freeman said. “It’s not how much money we can make from this.”
Council members worried about pulling an officer from general beat duties to inspect trucks may impact police coverage. However, Cullumber said the police department will manipulate the schedule to ensure that Huff is available to do truck inspections whenever possible.
“We have an officer who is prepared for this, and we need to be able to allow him to use his skills,” Cullumber said.

Comments

  1. “officials anticipate as many as 7,000 trucks per day will pass through Gardner”. What happened to trucks using the new I35 ramp and only local deliveries being allowed to go through Gardner?

  2. Judith Rogers says:

    All police officers need to be very familiar with what streets are truck routes and which are not and violators need to be fined heavily, not just $150, but double that amount or more if necessary. I have already seen trucks on streets where they are not allowed. Heavy fines need to be used very liberally as a good detriment to stop these trucks from going where they should not be going. We cannot afford to do otherwise. I also think we should seriously consider taking over the maintenance of Main St. (Hwy 56) thru Gardner city limits from the state of Kansas so we can keep those trucks out of our city – it could very well be cheaper in the long run and save lives and reduce pollution exposure to our citizens. Do you want to pay for some quality of life or do you want to pay to keep the thieves happy while you get poorer by the day and live in a hellhole?

    I absolutely do not want Gardner Rd. or Center St. as a truck route and one of the reasons is because these big trucks cannot make turns and stay in their lanes of traffic. I have seen this numerous times at the corner of Main & Center and Center and 183rd St.(big trucks turning onto 183rd St. which to my knowledge is not a truck route) It it not safe for our citizens.

    The city of Gardner can protect their citizens or they can play their games in order to pacify the thieves they are always chasing after and doing business with and governing for. Pretty easy to spot when you take notice of how Council members vote and what the Mayor and the administrative staff are recommending.

    I have copied the following from the 2013 Budget. Please be aware last fall the 2012 tax bills were issued and the Kill Creek Wastewater Benefit Dist. (Russell Family) assessments were placed on the Russell Family tax bills for the first time. Already the Russell Family is delinquent in the second half payment of taxes and assessment that was due in May 2013 on several properties and this is just the first year of the next 20 years we are going to have to drag this particular bloodsucker to meet their financial obligation to the citizens of Gardner. Put that along with all of the other deadbeats we have, as shown by the following information, it is no wonder we don’t have money for the things that are really important to the CITIZENS. If there is any doubt in your mind that the majority of the Council members, the mayors and administrative staffs for numerous years are working for the thieves rather than the citizens, then you don’t want to face the truth in my opinion. And keep in mind that a lot of these thieves involved in these benefit districts are so lowlife they request and get “farm” appraisals from Paul Welcome, the Jo. Co. Appraiser, and the citizens lose millions and millions of dollars in tax dollars across the state of Kansas because of this legal fraud. A good example is how Simmons First National Bank at 115 N. Moonlight reduced their tax bill from $5,559.99 in 2011 to $3.08 in 2012 by getting their good ole “farm” appraisal. And you have Gardner Bank (Moonlight Business Park), Paul Licausi (SE corner of 183rd & Center), First Federal Savings and & Loan, Independence, Ks., investors, builders one after another doing the same scummy thing. Most of those lost tax dollars are lost school tax dollars, however, for Simmons they were paying over $1,000 to the city of Gardner and that was reduced to something like 6 CENTS because of them getting their “farm” appraisal. And you don’t have one legislator or city or county leader in the whole state doing a damn thing about this financial rape.

    (((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((

    Bond and Interest Fund
    2012 Budget
    Fund 301
    Program
    Description
    The Bond and Interest Fund accounts for debt service proceeds and payments that finance major projects in
    the City. This is in the form of tax and fee supported
    projects and benefit district supported projects
    .
    Items of Note

    2012 shows a 1.5 mill reduction. This is being moved to General Fund for Fire Contractual services as
    previously noted.

    Decline in building activity decreases excise tax used to pay
    street debt, so the Special Highway fund is
    paying portions of the street debt from 2011

    2016.

    There are 19 benefit districts. (
    including
    Prairie Brooke and
    Kill Creek Sewer districts
    that
    have not yet
    finished the process to
    create
    assessments on their tax bills)

    Of the 17 assessed benefit districts, only
    5
    are having significant delinquent payments:

    New Century has 4 separate benefit districts, but they are
    for
    the infrastructure for the area on the
    east side of Moonlight (Austin’s, etc). The delinquency rate
    for all 4 districts combined
    is
    approximately 65%.

    Shean’s Crossing benefit district is 2 years delinquent; there have been no payments.

    B
    udget
    assumption
    s
    include:

    The 65% delinquency for New Century benefit districts won’t be collected until foreclosure with
    delinquency received in 2014

    Shean’s won’t pay until foreclosure with delinquency received in 2015
    201
    2
    Program Goals
    and Objectives

    N/A
    201
    1
    Program Anticipated Accomplishments

    Final debt issued for Kill Creek Wastewater Benefit District (Russel), and Prairiebrook Benefit District
    (Kill Creek Road, water, sewer)

    Tax revenues increased at an average of $9.00/month for an average house. This is
    intended to last for
    three years and then be able to drop to one

    third. This is needed to fund the shortfall and cash flow
    problem with non

    payments from benefit districts.

    Transfer In from General Fund of $100,000 to support Benefit District payments
    eliminated due to
    development occurring that was unanticipated. (I wonder what the hell unanticipaed development they are talking about)

    ((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((

    If the city of Gardner goes along with that Zimmer deal you will once again know exactly who the politicians and bureaucrats are taking care of and governing for and it sure as hell won’t be for the average citizen. That is my opinion.

  3. I also like how the city council members are worried about pulling one officer off duty for the truck inspections, but they don’t seem to worried about the 7,000 trucks tearing up our city roads and all the pollution and accidents that will go along with the trucks!!! Way to look out for the residents of Gardner!!!! I guess we can use all the tax money Gardner is going to get from the intermodal to keep our roads up, o wait… Gardner is not getting anything thanks again to our wonderful city leadership!!!! Again glad to see our city leaders are looking out for the residents!!!

    Here is another update the city is reviewing. Please go to the city of Gardners website and click on Agendas and Minutes, then 2013 City council Agendas & Minutes and go to June 10, 2013 Agendas. Click on #1 the proposal from Zimmer Company for annexation of Gardner property for a warehouse on 183rd and Waverly.

    Part of this proposal includes the city agreeing to the following (page 5, #3)
    3. Allowing trucks of all weights and sizes to access IBPKC from the southern BNSF
    Intermodal gate by taking 191st Street East, Gardner Road north, 183rd Street west
    to the north side of the development.

    This would be great, trucks running up and down center street and 183rd street 24 hours a day!!!

  4. Judith Rogers says:

    I also want to mention that Gilhaus and his USD 231 School Board never raise their voices in outrage against these farm appraisals and tax incentives, TIFs (they have the RIGHT to veto a TIF) and all of the other sweet deals made in the back rooms between the slimy politicians and the thieves and the biggest loss of tax dollars under these rotten deals are school tax dollars. So much for them protecting the interests of the school families and other citizens of the community and the same applies to school boards across the state. They too are among the many who go along to get along while the financial rape of average citizens gets worse by the day. Citizens might want to start making some smarter choices in the voting booths and holding most of these so-called representatives accountable.

    Average citizens will never, never, ever be seeing any benefits to that horror story intermodal or from many other sweet deals given to the thieves who don’t live here with the messes nor pay the high taxes – they will be paying thru the nose to take care of those bloodsuckers and in many, many different ways.

    Here is a chart on crime I came across the last few days. If this information is correct, I would say you have another issue to be most concerned with and myself I knew this was occurring and in my opinion crime stats will not be improving in the years ahead.

    See how dangerous Gardner, KS is compared to nearest cities:
    (Note: Higher means more crime)

    Gardner:
    247.3

    Spring Hill:
    184.5

    Olathe:
    149.7

    Wellsville:
    181.4

    Eudora:
    244.0

    Lenexa:
    152.6

    Baldwin City:
    150.3

    Overland Park:
    165.2

    Shawnee:
    149.2

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