Downtown project earns city recognition from state officials
State officials were in town this week to recognize Tonganoxie as one of six winners of Community Achievement Awards.
The city earned the award because of its downtown project, as well as work on its water treatment and distribution systems and the establishment of a domestic violence shelter.
In addition to Tonganoxie, officials with the Kansas Department of Commerce and Housing are presenting the award to the cities of Parsons, Hutchinson, Larned and Palco, as well as Lincoln County.
The city is the winner in the northeast Kansas region, according to Fred Schwien, deputy secretary of the Kansas Department of Commerce and Housing.
"Leadership is the difference between a town like Tonganoxie and a town that's on a downward spiral," Schwien said in a ceremony Monday morning at Council Chambers.
Department officials said Tonganoxie was recognized because of its use of a state comprehensive grant to revitalize downtown. The city also used a state grant to help improve its water system, and another grant in 1998 to establish a 10-person domestic violence and emergency shelter.
"Good community development starts with a road map and a plan for how the city will achieve its goals," said Ned Webb, director of the Community Development division of the state commerce and housing department. "It's clear this community recognizes the importance of working with the state and with the Kansas Department of Commerce and Housing."
Mayor John Franiuk, who accepted the award, acknowledged the state's role in helping with local improvements.
"So many of the projects wouldn't be possible without the help from the state," he said. "I'm most appreciative of this award."