Commission votes 3-2 to sell land at Wichita Greyhound Park

Wichita Greyhound Park (KSN File Photo)

SEDGWICK COUNTY, Kan. (KSNW) – The Sedgwick County commission voted 3-2 to sell the southern portion of the land at Wichita Greyhound Park. Currently, the county owns the land and Greyhound facility but leases it to Phil Ruffin, the owner of the Greyhound operation.

Greyhound Park was the site of live dog racing until it shut down in 2007 after Sedgwick County voters said no to adding slot machines. Since then, the building and land have sat empty.

Now, the commission will have to find an auctioneer to begin the process. The new owner would work with Ruffin to take over his lease, which ends in 2039.

County commission chairman Dave Unruh said the county is considering a public auction to be open and transparent with the process, hopefully gaining the greatest revenue.

“We need to do this in such a way that it doesn’t look like we’re making a special deal or anything like that,” he said.

Unruh added that the extra money could advance the county’s day-to-day needs.

According to the chairman, the county government needs more space. He hopes selling the land will give the county the funds to find a new facility.

Unruh said he doesn’t believe it’s best for the county to be in a landlord position and owning property for “entrepreneurial type activity.”

“We need to be involved in taking care of our resources and doing county business,” he said.