From the City Manager's Desk

October 1, 2018

Encore Prize Voting

Thank you Topeka for helping us get first place for the  Encore Gen2Gen Prize public voting competition. We now have $10,000 to help 25 high school seniors connect with mentors over the age of 50. Common Unity is a pilot program that will take place at Highland Park High School and eventually to all Topeka Public School high schools. The youth are our future and we want to help them in any way possible. The funds will make it possible to help students with ACT prep and fees, college application fees, college visits and much more.
Topeka is one of five finalists that will move on to the finals in Los Angeles where we will pitch our program for the $50,000 grand prize.

Food For Fines

The City of Topeka Municipal Court will start a Food for Fines program during the month of October. Any person with a payment due to the Municipal Court between October 1st and October 31st will receive a $25 credit towards their fine with a donation of ten cans of non-perishable canned goods.
All the non-perishable food items that are collected will be donated to Project Topeka.
The food donations allow for a one-time max credit of $25 for each case. The Food for Fines program only allows for credit in cases with payments being made with the court and not in collections. The program cannot be used for court costs, diversion fees, reinstatement fees, restitution or seat-belt tickets.
Cans must be taken to the Municipal Court Clerk’s office to receive credit. Dented, rusted, non-labeled, or expired food items will not be accepted.
For more information, please call the Municipal Court at (785) 368-3776.

1/2 Cent Sales Tax Renewal 

In the general election in November there will be a ballot item to renew the current 1/2 cent sales tax. 
The 1/2 cent sales tax funds 52% of the forecasted $24 million spent each year on street projects. 
The citywide sales tax program uses about $14 million raised annually through a 0.5 percent retailers’ tax, also known as a sales tax. The funds are used exclusively for costs of maintenance and improvements of existing City of Topeka streets, gutters, curbs, sidewalks, alleys and street lighting.
Learn more about street projects, preventative maintenance and investing in Topeka's infrastructure here:
The City Manager’s Office, Public Works and Finance are partnering to present to groups of citizens about the Citywide Half Cent Sales Tax renewal. If a group would like to request a presentation, please contact Molly Hadfield at or (785) 368-0991. 

Road Construction Update

The image on the right is a list of featured road construction projects for 2018. 

Work continuing on: 
  • Microsurfacing- Project is complete except for minor re-striping and correcting punch lists items.
  • SW Gage between 21st and 25th- Road is scheduled for a complete 24-hour closure in the near futures. During the closure, the road will be milled, overlaid and new striping installed. There is a backup plan if rain occurs.
  • Contractor working on SW 17th between Fairlawn and Arrowhead. Paving will be finished late this week or early next week.
  • SE Adams between 29th and 33rd- Contractor removed outside lanes between the Post Office and 29th.
  • 21st and Kansas- Permanent signal poles should be shipped this week.  Plan is to completely reopen all lanes once poles are installed. This should be in mid-October.
  • 29th and Burlingame- Contractor finishing up the southeast quadrant. Plan is to open SE quadrant next week and begin the final phase (NE quadrant).  Permanent signal pole delivery is scheduled for late October to early November.
Street Project Startup and Major Phase Changes:
  • SW 29th – Fairlawn to I-470 will start in October.
  • Two alley projects will start within the next two weeks.
  • Startup of the two mill and overlay projects.

 Recent Updates 

  • There have been 51 water main breaks in September with 654 breaks year to date. Last year at this time there were 297 total breaks.
  • 104 dirt restorations for water main breaks have been completed this month. There are 123 pending dirt restorations.
  • The street division applied 392 tons of asphalt for pothole and full-depth patching work; 2,101 tons so far this year.
  • The SW 10th – Gage to Fairlawn project, built during the 2016-17 construction seasons, won the American Council of Engineering Companies of Kansas - Public Improvement Award for the Cities over 50,000 Population category.

Landlord Expo 

The City of Topeka is proud to host our 1st Landlord Expo. The 2018 Topeka Landlord Expo is the most informative landlord event of its kind in the Midwest potentially attracting over 1,000 potential visitors. It will provide an excellent platform for property investors to seek the advice, guidance and tools necessary to succeed in the development and management of their rental property businesses.
Our purpose is simple. We want to provide landlords with the advice, tools and knowledge needed to be successful, and we want tenants to have decent, safe and affordable homes in safe neighborhoods.
The Expo is the perfect partner whether you are a first time or accidental landlord, an agent, property investor, managing an existing portfolio, or considering entering the private rental market. The key features of the Expo include over 80 exhibitors ranging from suppliers to professional advisers and local authorities and an action packed timetable of FREE workshops.
For more information call the Neighborhood Relations Department at (785) 368-4470

Neglected Building Registration Survey 

Below is a link to a brief survey regarding the proposed neglected building registration. We would appreciate your assistance getting the word out so we can get as much public input back on the proposed program as possible.


The E-Cycle event for recycling electronics will take place on Saturday, October 20th from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. 
Bring your used, unused, working or not working electronics for free recycling. 
CRT Monitors will cost $15 to recycle if they are 19" or smaller. 
CRT TVs will cost $30 if they are 20" or larger. 

Coming up

  • City Council Meeting, October 2nd at 6 p.m. 
  • E-Cycle, October 20th at the Expo Centre
  • 2018 Topeka Landlord Expo, Saturday, October 27th, 9AM-3PM
  • Topeka Fire Department is will be hosting its annual Open House and Fallen Firefighter Memorial on October 13th between 1:00 and 4:00 at the Fire Department Headquarters.

Brent Trout 

This weekly report is presented to you from the office of City Manager Brent Trout.
This report was produced through our open data portal. We have several other open data portals to help connect you with the work we do, including portals that let you: