Olathe News Briefs

This Edition of e-News - March 31, 2014:

  • The City of Olathe Needs Your Water Pledge
  • Olathe Honored By Arbor Day Foundation
  • Olathe Police Department Offers Spring Crime Prevention Tips
  • Take Advantage of Early Bird Discount on Annual Swim Passes
  • Parks & Recreation to Host Job Fair on April 19
  • Mother/Son Date Night Registration Deadline Approaching
  • FREE Summer Concert Series Accepting Charity Applications
  • Application Workshop for 2015 Community Development Block Grant (CDBG)
  • Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm Begins Spring Season

City Council
Released March 31, 2014
The Olathe City Council will next meet Tuesday, April 1, at 7:00 p.m. in the Council Chamber at City Hall for a regular session. Regular sessions are broadcast live on OGN (Comcast channel 7, AT&T channel 99 and on the City’s website). To see the complete agenda for this meeting, visit the City’s website at OlatheKS.org.  For a recap of the previous Council meeting, visit the City Clerk’s webpage.


The City of Olathe Needs Your Water Pledge
Released March 31, 2014
The City of Olathe has joined the National Mayor’s Challenge for Water Conservation, a friendly competition between cities across the United States, held April 1-30, to see who can be the most “water wise.” Mayors and civic leaders nationwide have challenged their residents to conserve water on behalf of their city in an effort to drastically decrease water and energy use across the country.

Join Olathe Mayor Michael Copeland and make your pledge today at MyWaterPledge.com. This pledge challenges residents to conserve water above and beyond typical daily practices. Last year, residents from more than 1,000 cities in all 50 states pledged to reduce their annual consumption of freshwater by nearly a billion gallons to prevent more than 70 million pounds of hazardous waste from entering watersheds.

Residents from winning cities will have the opportunity to win hundreds of prizes, including a Toyota Prius Plug-In, water-saving fixtures, and gift cards.

For additional information or to take the pledge, please visit MyWaterPledge.com.


Olathe Honored By Arbor Day Foundation
Released March 31, 2014
For the 31st year, Olathe has received the Tree City USA designation by the Arbor Day Foundation.  The national recognition honors communities that show a commitment to effective urban forest management.

Olathe also received a Tree City USA Growth Award for demonstrating environmental improvement and a higher level of tree care. This is the 21st year Olathe has received this award, making Olathe one of seven cities in Kansas to hold the designation in 2014.

“These awards demonstrate the community’s commitment to maintaining a healthy and diverse tree population,” said City Arborist Rick Spurgeon. “Our tree population provides more than shade and beauty; trees assist in areas such as flood prevention and street asphalt longevity.”

Cleaner air, improved storm water management, energy savings and increased property values and commercial activity are among the benefits enjoyed by Tree City USA communities. More information about the Tree City USA program is available at arborday.org/TreeCityUSA.


Olathe Police Department Offers Spring Crime Prevention Tips
Released March 31, 2014
Spring often means an increase in criminal activity. The following tips from the Olathe Police Department can help keep you and your home safe.

  • Roll up your car windows, take any valuables out of your car, and lock your doors every time you exit your vehicle, even if your vehicle is parked in your driveway.
  • Lock your home at all times. If you are working in the back yard, lock your front door and close/lock your garage door. Lock your back door when you are in the front yard. Always lock your doors when you leave, even if you only plan to be gone for a few minutes.
  • Close and lock your home windows and sliding doors when you go to bed or leave the house.
  • Install motion-activated lights in your front and back yards so when someone approaches your home, the lights automatically come on, illuminating that person.
  • Store all ladders and other tools into a secure storage area after use. Ladders and other tools can be used by criminals to access your home. Always lock storage units or sheds on your property.
  • Be aware of home improvement scams. If you did not solicit a contractor or salesman who shows up at your door unannounced, do not do business with that person.
  • If a utility representative comes to your house, request identification. True representatives will carry identification and they will show it to you. Call their company for verification.
  • Be a watchful, attentive neighbor to spot criminals and alert police to their presence.
  • Get involved in your community to help keep your spring happy and safe.

Take Advantage of Early Bird Discount on Annual Swim Passes
Released March 31, 2014
Purchase your Olathe season pool pass before April 30 and receive a $10 discount on a family membership and a $5 discount on individual passes.

The Super Pass is back by popular demand.  For an additional $55, the Super Pass provides entry into the Me & Mini Me swim sessions at Black Bob Bay (Monday and Wednesday mornings). Me & Mini Me swim sessions run from 10:30 a.m. to noon on designated days.

Visit Aquatics Admission to learn more about pass options,.


Parks & Recreation to Host Job Fair on April 19
Released March 31, 2014
The City of Olathe is seeking qualified applicants to fill a number of full-time and seasonal positions within the Olathe Parks & Recreation Department, including positions at the new Olathe Community Center opening July 1.

Olathe Parks & Recreation will host a job fair from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, April 19 at the Heritage Center at Mahaffie, 1200 E Kansas City Road.  Olathe Parks & Recreation staff will be available to answer questions and conduct on-site interviews.

Interested applicants are encouraged to visit City of Olathe Human Resources  to complete an online application for positions of interest. Applicants should print and bring the application(s) to the job fair on April 19.  Available positions, including job description and age requirements, will be posted by April 4.

Olathe Parks & Recreation employs more than 250 seasonal positions each year.


Mother/Son Date Night Registration Deadline Approaching
Released March 31, 2014
Olathe Parks & Recreation will host its first Mother/Son Date Night on Friday, April 11 at 7:00 p.m. at the Heritage Center, 1200 E. Kansas City Road. This perfect night out includes dinner from Hy-Vee Catering, music by the great Debbie Z, photos by Lifetouch, games, and great memories. Space is limited so register online or call 913-971-8563 by April 4.


Olathe Parks & Recreation FREE Summer Concert Series Accepting Charity Applications
Released March 31, 2014
The Olathe Parks & Recreation FREE Summer Concert Series is gearing up for a great season. Each year, the series chooses five local organizations to champion at each concert series show. For the 2014 season, we are seeking applications from charities that serve the Olathe community. Each year concert goers donate upwards of $10,000 with individual organizations receiving between $500-$1300.  Participating organizations are asked to provide a spokesperson and 20 volunteers the night of the event to help walk around the crowd and collect donations. To learn more and apply, please submit the online application by April 4.


Application Workshop for 2015 Community Development Block Grant (CDBG)
Released March 31, 2014
An Application Workshop for 2015 Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds will be held at 1:30 p.m., Monday, April 7, in Room 200 at the County Administration Building, 111 South Cherry Street in Olathe.

Please note that eligible applicants for CDBG funding are city departments, nonprofit organizations with an IRS 501(c)(3) tax exemption letter, and faith-based organizations.

In addition to responding to applicants’ questions, there will be a brief overview of the application and the CDBG program. Completed applications for City of Olathe 2015 CDBG funding will be due by 4:00 p.m. on Friday, May 9.   

For questions concerning the workshop, contact Community Development at (913) 715-8990.   For questions about City of Olathe CDBG, contact Kathy Rankin at (913) 971-6267.


Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm Begins Spring Season
Released March 31, 2014
Spring is a busy time on the farm signaling the return of 1860s living history activities, including stagecoach rides. The Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm begins its spring season this weekend. The site will be open Saturdays from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and Sundays from noon to 4:00 p.m. 

  • See how farmers would prepare their crops.
  • Taste what is cooking on Mrs. Mahaffie's stove.
  • Take a stagecoach ride and more!  (Some activities are weather permitting.)

Admission is $6/adults, $4/children ages 5-11; Olathe residents receive $1 off. The Heritage Center only will be open Wednesdays through Fridays from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Visit Mahaffie.org for more information, including additional spring activities now open for registration:


This Edition of e-News - March 24, 2014:

  • Floodproofing Tips for Homeowners
  • City to Host Scouting Open House March 31
  • Olathe Parks & Recreation to Host Mother/Son Date Night on April 11
  • FREE Summer Concert Series Accepting Charity Applications
  • Registration Open for Spring Programs at Mahaffie
  • Mahaffie to Participate in the Passport to Adventure Kick Off
  • Friends of OPL Accepting Curtis Gilmore Memorial Scholarship Applications

City Council
Released March 24, 2014
The Olathe City Council will next meet Tuesday, April 1, at 7:00 p.m. in the Council Chamber at City Hall for a regular session. Regular sessions are broadcast live on OGN (Comcast channel 7, AT&T channel 99 and on the City’s website). To see the complete agenda for this meeting, visit the City’s website at OlatheKS.org.  For a recap of the previous Council meeting, visit the City Clerk’s webpage.


Floodproofing Tips for Homeowners
Released March 24, 2014
Spring is officially here! Now is a great time to prepare for spring rain storms and their potential to cause flooding problems in the home. While homeowners can’t control the weather, there are steps that can help prevent flooding.

  • Divert downspout discharge away from foundations.
  • Ensure sump pump discharge pipes are free and clear and above swale flow lines. Swales are channels or ditches, near houses, graded to convey stormwater to the nearest inlet, stream or pond.
  • Maintain drainage swales with vegetation and clear of obstructions, such as fences, sheds, and gardens.
  • Add soil or make grading changes to slope away from the home if the ground around the foundation is flat or slopes toward the house.
  • Clean gutters and downspouts to ensure effective water diversion away from the home.
  • Inspect the home’s foundation for cracks each year; consult a professional if needed.
  • Clean out basement drains annually.

City to Host Scouting Open House March 31
Released March 24, 2014
The City of Olathe is hosting an Open House for Scouting on Monday, March 31 at 6:30 p.m. at Olathe City Hall, 100 E. Santa Fe Street.

Olathe Mayor Michael Copeland and other City staff will educate scouts about many aspects of City government, including Olathe’s form of government, the role of the mayor and other City officials, operations and services provided by City departments and good citizenship. 

Space is limited and an RSVP is requested.  For more information, call Brenda Long at 913-971-8940. 


Olathe Parks & Recreation to Host Mother/Son Date Night on April 11
Released March 24, 2014
Olathe Parks & Recreation will host its first Mother/Son Date Night on Friday, April 11 at 7:00 p.m. at the Heritage Center, 1200 E. Kansas City Road. This perfect night out includes dinner from Hy-Vee Catering, music by the great Debbie Z, photos by Lifetouch, games, and great memories. Space is limited so register soon by phone at 913-971-8563 or online.


Olathe Parks & Recreation FREE Summer Concert Series Accepting Charity Applications
Released March 24, 2014
The Olathe Parks & Recreation FREE Summer Concert Series is gearing up for a great fifteenth season. Each year, the series chooses five local organizations to champion at each concert series show. For the 2014 season, we are seeking applications from charities that serve the Olathe community. Each year concert goers donate upwards of $10,000 with individual organizations receiving between $500-$1300.  Participating organizations are asked to provide a spokesperson and 20 volunteers the night of the event to help walk around the crowd and collect donations. To learn more and apply, please fill out the online application by April 4.


Registration Open for Spring Programs at Mahaffie
Released March 24, 2014
Brownie Girl Scouts will learn sewing skills and enjoy 1860s spring farming activities as part of Brownie Girl Scout Day on Saturday, April 5 from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Cost is $10/Brownie Scout and accompanying adults are free. Registration is required and the last day to register is Friday, April 4. Payment is due the day of the program.

Home School students will enjoy 1860s living history activities with other home school families as part of Spring Home School Day on Thursday, April 17. Spring farm chores will be featured and programs will run from 10:00 a.m. to noon or from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Cost is $5/student and accompanying adults are free. Registration is required by Thursday, April 10. Payment is due the day of the program.


Mahaffie to Participate in the Passport to Adventure Kick Off
Released March 24, 2014
The Interpretive Site Coalition of Kansas City will host the annual Passport to Adventure Kick Off on Saturday, March 29, from noon to 4:00 p.m. at Bass Pro Shops, 18001 Bass Pro Drive Independence, MO. Admission is FREE!  Participating members will offer a variety of activities. Mahaffie will offer corn grinding. Passports will be available to families at each member site after March 29. Each site will offer a stamp and after 15 stamps are collected, participants can turn in the passport for a special prize in September.


Friends of OPL Accepting Curtis Gilmore Memorial Scholarship Applications
Released March 24, 2014
The Friends of the Olathe Public Library are accepting applications for two Curtis Gilmore Memorial Scholarships. The $500 scholarships honor Curtis Gilmore, a youth library volunteer from 2003 to 2005 who passed away in 2007.  He was a senior at Olathe North High School and due to graduate May 2007.

Scholarships are open to all graduating seniors who have completed 40 volunteer hours during 9-12 grades (service hours may begin the summer before entering 9th grade) at either of the Olathe library locations.

Applications are due by 5:00 p.m. on April 4 and may be mailed or delivered to Rita J. Patterson, Community Relations Coordinator, Olathe Public Library, 201 E. Park, Olathe, KS 66061. Scholarships are funded, in part, by proceeds from the “The Animals We Love” Novel Tea, a sold-out event, to be held March 29 at the Indian Creek Community Church, 12480 S. Black Bob Road.


This Edition of e-News - March 18, 2014:

  • City of Olathe Welcomes Two New Directors
  • Yearly Testing Required for Lawn Sprinkler Systems
  • Spring at Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm
  • Family Library Day March 24
  • Friends of OPL Accepting Curtis Gilmore Memorial Scholarship Applications
  • Microchip and Low Cost Rabies Vaccination Clinic March 22

City Council
Released March 18, 2014
The Olathe City Council will next meet Tuesday, March 18, at 7:00 p.m. in the Council Chamber at City Hall for a regular session. Regular sessions are broadcast live on OGN (Comcast channel 7, AT&T channel 99 and on the City’s website). To see the complete agenda for this meeting, visit the City’s website at OlatheKS.org.  For a recap of the previous Council meeting, visit the City Clerk’s webpage.


City of Olathe Welcomes Two New Directors
Released March 18, 2014
Mary Jaeger Named Public Works Director
Former Deputy Director of Public Works Mary Jaeger was recently promoted to Director of Public Works. She assumed this new role on March 4, 2014.

Jaeger has worked for the City of Olathe since March 2006, starting as the traffic division manager before being promoted to city engineer in November 2006.  Jaeger became the infrastructure manager in August 2011 and deputy director in February 2012. Prior to coming to Olathe, Jaeger served as the director of public works and city engineer for the City of Raymore, MO, and she also has previous experience working for the Missouri Department of Transportation.

Jaeger earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Civil Engineering from Kansas State University and is currently pursuing her Master’s in Public Administration from the University of Kansas.

Michael Meadors New Parks and Recreation Director
The City of Olathe is pleased to welcome Michael Meadors as the new Director of Parks and Recreation. Meadors joined the staff on Monday, March 3 after a 27-plus year career with Johnson County Park & Recreation.

Meadors brings a unique background to the director position with both a strong recreation and parks background and he is excited to join the OPRD staff. “The staff throughout all five divisions of this department has continuously set the national standard for programming and service,” said Meadors. “I am excited to join this exceptional staff and serve the community I have lived and raised my family in for nearly 30 years.”


Yearly Testing Required for Lawn Sprinkler Systems
Released March 18, 2014
With spring just around the corner, many property owners may be making arrangements to activate lawn irrigation systems. Letters will be sent soon reminding those with irrigation systems to have the backflow prevention device tested. If you are not planning on using your system this year, the test is still required.

There is potential for contaminants such as lawn fertilizers, chemicals and pesticides to enter the City’s water supply with connections between the water supply and irrigation systems. This testing ensures safe water for all water customers by eliminating potential water contamination through cross-connects. For more information about backflow prevention testing, visit OlatheKS.org/OMS/Backflow/CrossConnection, call 913-971-9055, or contact us via OlatheConnect.  


Mahaffie Offers Living History Activities for Spring Break
Released March 18, 2014
Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm, 1200 Kansas City Rd., Olathe, will offer living history activities Thursday, March 20, Friday, March 21, and Saturday, March 22. Guests can visit the blacksmith, tour Mahaffie House, see what is cooking on Mrs. Mahaffie’s cookstove, play 19th Century games and take a stagecoach ride (weather and ground conditions permitting). All activities are included with regular daily admission of $6 for adults and $4 for kids ages 5-11.  Olathe residents receive $1 off admission with proof of residency.


Family Library Day March 24
Released March 18, 2014
Join Olathe Teen Council on Monday, March 24 at the Indian Creek Branch Library for the annual Family Library Day. Come enjoy an afternoon of spring-related crafts, games, stories, snacks and activities. In addition to fun learning stations, Teen Council will provide a variety of healthy snacks. The program is for children ages 4 to 8. The fun starts at 1:00 p.m. and will last about an hour. Parents are welcome! For more information, please call (913) 971-6874.


Friends of OPL Accepting Curtis Gilmore Memorial Scholarship Applications
Released March 18, 2014
The Friends of the Olathe Public Library are accepting applications for two Curtis Gilmore Memorial Scholarships. The $500 scholarships honor Curtis Gilmore, a youth library volunteer from 2003 to 2005 who passed away in 2007.  He was a senior at Olathe North High School and due to graduate May 2007.

Scholarships are open to all graduating seniors who have completed 40 volunteer hours during 9-12 grades (service hours may begin the summer before entering 9th grade) at either of the Olathe library locations.

Applications are due by 5:00 p.m. on April 4 and may be mailed or delivered to Rita J. Patterson, Community Relations Coordinator, Olathe Public Library, 201 E. Park, Olathe, KS 66061. Scholarships are funded, in part, by proceeds from the “The Animals We Love” Novel Tea, a sold-out event, to be held March 29 at the Indian Creek Community Church, 12480 S. Black Bob Road.


Microchip and Low Cost Rabies Vaccination Clinic March 22
Released March 18, 2014
On Saturday March 22, the City of Olathe will offer its Microchip and Low Cost Rabies Clinic for Olathe residents. The event will run from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. at the Olathe Animal Shelter located at 505 East Sunvale Drive in Olathe (behind the Police Department).

Residents can to obtain rabies vaccinations and purchase/renew City of Olathe animal licenses at the same time. Microchips are $25.00 and Rabies shots are $10.00 for a one year vaccination. Additional immunizations such as Distemper, Bordetella, etc. will be available as well at a reduced rate. With your current rabies vaccination you will also be able to license your pet with the City. Cash or check only.


This Edition of e-News - March 10, 2014:

  • Citizen Survey Results Show Exceptional Performance
  • Flashing Yellow Arrows Coming to Olathe Streets
  • Emergency Repair Program Helping Those in Need
  • Spring at Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm
  • Olathe Public Library Events

City Council
Released on March 10, 2014
The Olathe City Council will next meet Tuesday, March 18, at 7:00 p.m. in the Council Chamber at City Hall for a regular session. Regular sessions are broadcast live on OGN (Comcast channel 7, AT&T channel 99 and on the City’s website). To see the complete agenda for this meeting, visit the City’s website at OlatheKS.org.  For a recap of the previous Council meeting, visit the City Clerk’s webpage.


DirectionFinder Survey Shows Very High Citizen Satisfaction
Released on March 10, 2014
On Tuesday March 4th, the Olathe City Council received the results of the Olathe’s most recent citizen satisfaction survey showing Olathe continues enjoying some of the highest satisfaction levels in the country.  Key findings shows 92% of residents are satisfied or very satisfied with overall city services.  Satisfaction for that category in the Kansas City metropolitan area stands at 54% and nationally at 57%.  While 74% of Olathe residents report being satisfied or very satisfied with “value for tax dollars and fees”, only 40% give those marks in the metro area and 45% nationally.  In fact, Olathe satisfaction ratings for all major service areas measured are dramatically higher than the metropolitan and national averages.

For the first time in the survey’s history, maintenance of city streets rose to residents’ number one priority replacing traffic flow.  The City believes the recently passed street maintenance sales tax will fully address that concern.

DirectionFinder, the survey tool, is administered by ETC Institute.  Olathe is one of some 700 state and local governments using the tool.  Chris Tatham, senior vice-president of ETC, said Olathe’s numbers remain phenomenal.  He said, “We conduct citizen satisfaction surveys for hundreds of cities across the country, and Olathe’s performance over the last ten years clearly stands head and shoulders above all the others”.

The complete survey and video of ETC’s presentation are available on the City’s website, OlatheKS.org.


Flashing Yellow Arrow Signals Coming
Released on March 10, 2014
Drivers in Olathe will encounter flashing yellow arrows in the city when new traffic signal indicators for left turns are installed this spring. The flashing yellow arrows are planned at the intersection of 151st Street and Brougham, for east and westbound traffic only.

Neighboring communities and many cities across the nation already use the flashing yellow arrow traffic signals. A national study demonstrated that this new signal indication helps prevent crashes and concluded that drivers found the new flashing yellow arrows easier to understand than the traditional yield on green indications.

When drivers approach an intersection displaying a flashing yellow arrow, it is permitted to make a left turn after yielding to oncoming traffic and pedestrians. Note: Oncoming traffic has a green light, so drivers must wait for a safe gap in traffic before turning left.

For more information regarding flashing yellow arrows, visit OlatheKS.org or contact the Olathe Traffic Operations Center at 913-971-5180.


Olathe’s Emergency Repair Program Making a Difference
Released on March 10, 2014
When Olathe resident Arthur’s water heater stopped working at the end of last year, he was unsure what he was going to do or how he would have it replaced. Arthur is a senior citizen who lives solely on his social security.  Purchasing a new water heater and having it installed was not an expense he could afford.  He had no other choice at the time but to live without hot water.  In January 2014, he found out about the City of Olathe’s Emergency Repair Program.

The Emergency Repair Program, funded through the Community Development Block Grant, provides funding for rehabilitation of Olathe homes for qualified applicants for such emergency improvements as electrical repairs, plumbing repairs, furnace replacements, roof replacements and other health and safety issues.

Arthur qualified to receive a new water heater and a new subfloor underneath the water heater.  During the replacement, inspectors identified the subfloor was rotting and structurally unstable. Arthur now has hot water that he lived without for over a month and can also feel safe and comfortable in his home.

The Housing Rehabilitation Division administers a variety of programs to include the Emergency Repair Program, the Handicap Accessibility Program and the Deferred Loan Program to help assist low to moderate income homeowners make needed construction repairs to their homes.  Applications for all the programs are accepted year round.  If you are interested in finding out more information about the programs or receiving an application, please contact Jessica Roberts at 913.971.6268 or Autum Goentzel at 913.971.6274.  Applications and additional program details are also available online at OlatheKS.Org.


Mahaffie Offers Living History Activities for Spring Break
Released on March 10, 2014
Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm, 1200 Kansas City Rd., Olathe, will offer living history activities Thursday, March 20 Friday March 21 and Saturday March 22. Guests can visit the blacksmith, tour Mahaffie House, see what is cooking on Mrs. Mahaffie’s cookstove, play 19th Century games and take a stagecoach ride, (weather and ground conditions permitting). All activities are included with regular daily admission of $6 for adults and $4 for kids ages 5-11.  Olathe residents receive $1 off admission with proof of residency.


Registration Opened for Spring Programs at Mahaffie
Released on March 10, 2014
Registration for Spring programs is now underway at Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm in Olathe.  Brownie Girl Scout Day is planned for Saturday April 5 from 9:30am to 2:30pm. Brownie Girl Scouts will learn sewing skills and enjoy 1860s hands on spring farming activities. Cost is $10 per Brownie Scout, and accompanying adults are free. Registration is required and the last day to register is the Friday, April 4th. Payment is due the day of the program.

In addition, Spring Home School Day is planned for Thursday April 17. Home School students can enjoy hands on 1860s living history activities with other home school families. Spring farm chores will be featured, and the programs will be from 10:00 a.m. to noon or from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Cost is $5 per student and accompanying adults are free. Registration is required, and the last day to register is Thursday April 10. Payment is due the day of the program.


Cut the Clutter and Get Organized
Released on March 10, 2014
Valeria Edwards, K-State Extension Agent, will teach strategies for managing the household to reduce and even eliminate clutter.  The class will run from 1:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. on March 11 at the Indian Creek Branch, 12990 S. Black Bob Road.  See how a four-container system can help tackle clutter. Those interested can register on the events page at www.olathelibrary.org or call 913-971-6888.


Set Your Own Pace While Exploring Facebook
Released on March 10, 2014
In this self-paced online class for learners at every level of experience, participants can explore the largest social networking site on the Internet.  Those attending must know how to use mouse and keyboard.  A library staff member will be present to assist participants.  The two-hour sessions will be held at 6:30 p.m., March 12 at the Indian Creek Branch, 12990 S. Black Bob Road and at 10 am, March 13 at the Olathe Public Library, 201 E. Park.  Those interested can register on the events page at www.olathelibrary.org or call 913-971-6888.


This Edition of e-News - March 3, 2014:

  • Severe Weather Awareness Week
  • When Emergency Strikes, Are YOU in the Know?
  • Is it Time for Your Lifesaving Change?
  • Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop Announces Winners of Olathe History Day Contest
  • State of the City March 7
  • Household Hazardous Waste Drop-Off Event March 8
  • Please Keep Sidewalks Clear and Safe

City Council
Released on March 3, 2014
The Olathe City Council will next meet Tuesday, March 4, at 7:00 p.m. in the Council Chamber at City Hall for a regular session. Regular sessions are broadcast live on OGN (Comcast channel 7, AT&T channel 99 and on the City’s website). To see the complete agenda for this meeting, visit the City’s website at OlatheKS.org.  For a recap of the previous Council meeting, visit the City Clerk’s webpage.


Severe Weather Awareness Week
Released on March 3, 2014
The Olathe Fire Department challenges you to create a family emergency plan during “Kansas Severe Weather Awareness Week,” March 3-7. Disasters can happen anytime and anywhere. Be prepared for a disaster and make your personalized family plan now - before disaster strikes. Visit OlatheKS.org/Fire and click on “MAKE A PLAN.”

On Thursday, March 6, Olathe will participate in the annual statewide tornado drill in conjunction with the National Weather Service.  At 1:30 p.m. the outdoor warning sirens and NOAA all-hazard weather radios will be activated as part of the state-wide drill.  Residents are encouraged to use this time to practice their sheltering plans for severe weather.    

The system will also activate on Wednesday, March 5 at 11:00 a.m. during the monthly, countywide warning system (siren) test. Visit OlatheKS.org and click on “Outdoor warning system” to learn about Olathe’s sirens. 

For more information about emergency management in Olathe, please call (913) 971-7900.


When Emergency Strikes, Are YOU in the Know?
Released on March 3, 2014
Johnson County residents, businesses and those who have opted-in for the NotifyJoCo emergency alert system will receive a test phone call, text, or email on Tuesday, March 4, sometime after 10:00 a.m. as a part of the annual test of the emergency alert system.

In recognition of emergency preparedness, Johhnson County residents, businesses and commuters are urged to sign-up for NotifyJoCo emergency alerts at NotifyJoCo.org.  Individuals and business may be contacted via landline telephone, mobile phone, email and text during the test.  The system is programmed to continue trying to reach its contacts until recipients confirm they have received the notice by following the instructions in the message.

NotifyJoCo is an emergency alert system that began in 2013 to keep Johnson County residents, businesses and others informed of public safety alerts, water main breaks, public health alerts, and more.  NotifyJoCo is a FREE public service made possible by a partnership of local governments and public utilities in Johnson County.

To enroll in NotifyJoCo, log onto NotifyJoCo.org to customize your contact information, tag your locations and update your contact preferences.  Residents without internet access may call 913-826-5555 for assistance with registration.  All information provided is kept confidential and only used to contact citizens about emergencies or non-emergency topics on which they have elected to receive information.  

Since the inception of NotifyJoCo, over 17,000 people have signed-up to receive emergency alerts and information that is important to them.  In addition, the Notify JoCo system is linked to over 140,000 land line contacts.

Notify JoCo is the only emergency alert used by public officials from Johnson County, several cities and WaterOne.  NotifyJoCo has the ability to send out at least 100,000 notifications/hour, allowing NotifyJoCo to reach citizens immediately in emergency situations.

Parents are also encouraged to talk with their kids about severe weather drills and alerts from NotifyJoCo.  Miles the Martian is the spokes-Martian for NotifyJoCo, teaching kids that information is power and staying alert in emergencies is a great way to show your bravery.  Find Miles’s blog at NotifyJoCo.org .

The backup date for this test is Thursday, March 6.


Is it Time for Your Lifesaving Change?
Released on March 3, 2014
Roughly two-thirds of home fire deaths occur in homes with no smoke alarms or no working smoke alarms, according to the National Fire Protection Association. A properly maintained smoke alarm significantly increases your chances of surviving a deadly home fire. To help save lives and prevent needless injuries, the Olathe Fire Department, along with the Fire Education Association of Kansas and the Fire Marshals Association of Kansas, urges everyone to adopt a simple, lifesaving habit — change your smoke alarm batteries at least once per year. If it is time for your lifesaving change, change your home’s smoke alarm batteries when you change your clocks to Daylight Savings Time on Sunday, March 9.

“Smoke alarms can provide an early warning and the critical extra seconds needed to escape during a fire,” said Olathe Fire Captain Mike Hall. He added, “Working smoke alarms help save lives.”

If you are in need of smoke alarms or require help changing batteries, check with your local fire department or call the American Red Cross Smoke Alarm Hotline at (816) 841-5242.


Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop Announces Winners of Olathe History Day Contest
Released on March 3, 2014
Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm hosted over 100 Olathe District Schools’ students on Tuesday, February 25, as part of Olathe History Day in preparation for National History Day. National History Day makes history come alive for America’s youth by engaging them in the discovery of the historic, cultural, and social experiences of the past. Students made group and individual presentations in several categories including Documentary, Exhibit, Paper, Performance, and Website. The theme for this year’s National History Day is Rights and Responsibilities in History.

Winners of the Olathe History Day Contest are:

Paper: Life in a Jar by Megan Duffield and Aliza Swan-Chisholm Trail Middle School; Apartheid  by Alex Schuler-Chisholm Trail Middle School; and The Japanese Military’s Inhumane Treatment of Women During WWII by Greta Lundy-Olathe Northwest High School.

Combined categories of Documentary and Performance: Documentary: Japanese Internment by Zoe Harland-Chisholm Trail Middle School and Berlin Wall-Rise and Fall by Jake Bradley and Sean Roppe-Chisholm Trail Middle School; Performance: Women’s Suffrage by Haley Dunitz-Chisholm Trail Middle School and Abortion-Which Side Are You On? by Alexa Edmonds, Abby Martinie, Jaelyn Long, Ashley Elliott, and Grace Palcic-Chisholm Trail Middle School.

Exhibits:  Responsibility of Players by Ben Glades-Santa Fe Trail Middle School; Jackie Robinson by Jackson Ness and Casey Shell-Chisholm Trail Middle School; and The Stonewall Inn by Kaley Sexton Chisholm Trail Middle School.

Students are now eligible to advance to the district competition held in Lawrence on Saturday, March 1.


State of the City March 7
Released on March 3, 2014
Olathe Mayor Michael Copeland will deliver the State of the City on Friday, March 7, at the Hilton Garden Inn.  The luncheon is scheduled to begin at 11:30 a.m. and conclude at 1:00 p.m.  Although tickets are sold out, the speech will be broadcast on the Olathe Government Network (Comcast channel 7, AT&T channel 99 and on the City’s website).


Household Hazardous Waste Drop-Off Event March 8
Released on March 3, 2014
All Johnson County residents have the opportunity to drop off their unwanted Household Hazardous Waste (HHW) at the City of Olathe’s drop-off event March 8 from 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at the HHW facility, 1420 S. Robinson Drive behind Public Works and Customer Service. Residents will be asked to provide a photo ID and a general description of their HHW items. Items that can be dropped off include aerosol cans, automotive fluids, automotive batteries and household batteries, bathroom cleaners, carpet cleaners, cooking oil, drain cleaners, fertilizers, paint, light bulbs, pesticides, etc. Electronic waste (e-Waste) is not accepted at the drop-off event. For a full list of acceptable items, visit OlatheKS.org.

Can’t make it to the Saturday event or have unwanted e-Waste? Residents can make an appointment 24-hour in advance to drop off unwanted HHW items by calling Customer Service at (913) 971-9311.


Please Keep Sidewalks Clear and Safe
Released on March 3, 2014
Property owners in Olathe are required to clear snow from sidewalks in front of and adjacent to their properties.  We can all work together to ensure pedestrians, including children who walk to school, have safe sidewalks on which to travel.  Please consider assisting elderly and disabled neighbors with snow removal on their property.  If you need to report a violation, contact Community Enhancement at 971-9880 or visit OlatheConnect.  A specific address must accompany the report.