Continued financial difficulties have led to the Arkansas City Commissioners now considering relinquishing governing control over South Central Kansas Medical Center after more than two years of direct oversight. It was back in May of 2018, when the city commission took over the medical center and disbanded the appointed board amid severe financial difficulties at that time. Now, the most recent report on the hospital’s finances show a year-to-date loss of $3.8 million compared to last year. The huge loss this year is being attributed to lower patient numbers because of the COVID-19 pandemic. When commissioners meet later today, they will have the option to approve, disapprove or table the ordinance for a second reading at the September 15 meeting.
Ark City Commissioners also may vote to close off two streets by Paris Park and the Paris Park Pool. That would include the part of Fifth Avenue that runs from the west line of the Mill Canal to the west line of Sixth Street, and also Sixth Street from Washington Avenue to Fifth Avenue. The reason… traffic in that area according to some, creates safety issues when the pool is open and the IYQ Camp is in session. Closure of those streets also would add additional parking for the pool in the future. The Fifth Avenue bridge that leads to Cowley College could also possibly be converted to a pedestrian-only crossing.