City officials broke ground for a $4.2 million police station Thursday morning at 3rd and Kentucky.

Randy Kirby

Sedalia Mayor Stephen J. Galliher emceed the event, attended by city employees, Sedalia City Councilmen, the Sedalia Police Command Staff, well as well as Rep. Nathan Beard, architects, Septagon personnel and other officials.

“We couldn't have done this without these next three people,” the Mayor said, then naming off Outgoing City Administrator Gary Edwards, Interim City Administrator Kelvin Shaw and Community Development Director John Simmons.

Galliher thanked Joleigh Melte for her organizational skills lining up all the planning meetings, and also wished her happy birthday.

“Hopefully with good weather and all, maybe this time next year, we'll have a ribbon-cutting, everybody can come back for that. I'm ready for it, it's been a long time coming,” Galliher said.

The Mayor noted that the new building will house the police department except for communications, which will remain at City Hall in the basement after remodeling.

Shaw said there are plans to re-purpose the existing building, built around 1973. Keeping communications in the same building made the best sense and allowed for remodeling of the dispatchers' work area.

“We started (planning) about a year ago with just a concept through a lot of hard work with a lot of people ... and it's becoming a reality today with the groundbreaking,” Sedalia Police Chief John DeGonia said after the ceremony. “We're very excited.”
“We'll have a little (extra) room for growth and we're just happy and grateful for what we've got. We won't see another (new) police department for another 20-25 years,” he said, adding that he's happy with the location in downtown Sedalia.

Officer Matt Wirt of the SPD Command Staff, was involved with some of the technical aspects in planning the new structure over the past year.

“Most everybody shares an office or maybe three people, we have offices in closets, so we've outgrown the building many years ago,” Wirt said of the current facility.

State Rep. Nathan Beard said it was a great experience to see the groundbreaking. “I'm so thankful for all the hard work that's gone into the project, Beard said, noting that at one time, he considered moving his law practice on the same parcel of land.

“I'm glad I didn't!” he said, “they would have kicked me out for something much better. So to have the new department headquarters here I think is just wonderful. We need it, and it's really going to help the men and women in blue do what they do best.”

The general contractor is Septagon Construction Co., Inc. Septagon was the lowest of six bidders on the project, which will consist of a two-story, 18-000-square-foot facility in the 200 block of South Kentucky. The cost is estimated at $4,220,000.