Politics & Government

August 22, 2014

Sedgwick County clarifies questions about lease of Judge Riddel Boys Ranch

Sedgwick County commissioners are scheduled to make a decision about a 10-year lease of the Judge Riddel Boys Ranch on Sept. 17. Proposals are due to the county Sept. 3.

Sedgwick County on Thursday clarified some information in its request for proposals for lease of the Judge Riddel Boys Ranch.

An addendum aims to answer questions that some people have had about the county’s proposed 10-year lease of the property, closed last month because of a funding gap between what the program cost and what the state paid.

The county issued an RFP on Aug. 6.

The addendum, posted Thursday, notes that the lease is for 43 acres and that 60 adjacent acres are not included.

It also noted that unless items are bolted down or fixed in place, they are not part of the lease. That was a question several people asked county purchasing director Joe Thomas, Assistant County Manager Ron Holt and facilities director Steve Claassen during a tour of the Lake Afton ranch on Aug. 12.

The addendum said that the Kansas Department of Health and Environment inspects the ranch’s sewage lagoons every three years and that the last time the lagoons were dredged was before 2002.

Average monthly utility costs at the ranch, including electricity, water, waste disposal and fuel oil, were $11,039 last year, the addendum said.

The addendum also gives estimates on some repairs at the ranch. The county estimated that replacing the ranch’s heating and cooling system would cost just more than $2 million and replacing the sanitary sewers would cost about $57,000.

The county noted that “existing buildings and site elements at the JRBR complex are known to have structural inconsistencies that are not in compliance with the ADA Standards for Accessible Design under the Americans with Disabilities Act.” Whoever leases the ranch will be responsible for compliance, the addendum says.

Proposals are due to the county by 1:45 p.m. Sept. 3. The county's bid board will make a recommendation Sept. 11 about the best proposal, and commissioners are scheduled to make a decision Sept. 17.

Representatives from Union Rescue Mission, Preferred Family Healthcare and Saint Francis Community Services toured the ranch earlier this month.

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