Riley County officials have identified replacement sites for two radio system tower locations as part of the county’s new seven-tower emergency communications system, according to a report at the county commission meeting Thursday.

The replacement sites come after two of the original sites planned to be near Fort Riley, as well as a proposed tower site at the Riley County Law Enforcement Center, failed structural analyses.

Pat Collins, emergency management director, said the county’s planning board has approved one location at North 52nd Street on property owned by Jay and Vonda Copeland, and the board will review the other location proposal, on the Lyons Ranch property off of West 57th Avenue near McDowell Creek Road, in July.

Those replacement sites are in addition to other planned sites for the radio system’s equipment, including sites at Deep Creek, Randolph, Riley, the Miller water tower and a tower at Top of the World owned by Manhattan Broadcasting.

Clancy Holeman, county counselor, is working with Ka-Comm, the company handling the tower project, to create a contract that will encompass all of the work on the project, including any subcontractors the company hires. Collins said he will return with updated budget quotes for the project once that contract is finalized.

Harris Radio, a Florida-based communication technology company, also returned $149,000 as a system credit for the county after it was unable to expedite installation of radio consoles at the Riley County Law Enforcement Center. The commission approved Collins’ request that the county apply that credit to other potential project costs.

In other business, the commission signed a memorandum of understanding with Flint Hills Area Transportation Agency that sets up a plan for how the agency plays into the county’s emergency management efforts, given the recent flooding scare.

The commission also approved $1,466,665 for an asphalt overlay project by Schilling Construction. The company was the sole bidder on the project, which will be funded through the public works budget and sales tax fund. Work will take place on Winkler Road and Crooked Creek Road, including its intersection with Kansas Avenue.

Other purchases approved by the commission include $199,000 for a track loader from Murphy Tractor, $150,000 for a dump truck from Summit Truck Group, $50,000 for a new shelter project at Fairmont Park by AB Creative, and $46,000 for a mill and fill project at the Law Enforcement Center from Schilling Construction.

City reporter for the Manhattan Mercury