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County passes on state agency membership

POSTED March 19, 2012 1:19 p.m.

It is admittedly not a huge savings — less than $700 for the year — so it’s not like Barton County will have some great windfall in its budget.
But members of the Barton County Commission made it clear that they couldn’t justify spending the money to join another county association when they are already part of an active state organization.
Monday the commissioners approved not joining the Kansas County Commissioners Association for 2012, saving the county $607.50.
According to information from the county, the KCCA “serves county commissioners who represent the nearly three million citizens residing in the 105 counties of Kansas.
“As the only organization in Kansas exclusively focused on the needs of county commissioners and their constituents, the KCCA provides education on the ethical, policy making, statutory, and regulatory responsibilities of a county commissioner; offers training on ways to effect change and promote and enhance local control of counties through state and federal legislative processes; engages in issues facing partner associations by demonstrating a willingness to listen, negotiate differences, and seek common ground consistent with the public interest and seeks strategic alliances that benefit the interests of county government and its citizens.”
However, the commissioners explained Monday, the county still pays to belong to the Kansas Association of Counties and the two agencies are affiliated, allowing Barton County to participate in similar programs and access to the same staff members at the state level.
The choice to not join the KCCA was unanimous, though Commissioner Kenny Schremmer was not present at Monday’s meeting.
Also on Monday, the commissioners appointed County Administrator Richard Boeckman as the official Americans with Disabilities Act coordinator.
Boeckman told the commissioners he’s been the county coordinator for about seven years now and during that time the county has funded a number of improvements to the courthouse and to other county office buildings to bring them into compliance with ADA requirements.
There’s always more to do, however, Boeckman added. “We still have a couple of small issues in the county.”
He noted that there are some small projects in some of the county’s ancillary buildings and “most have been addressed with minimal costs.”
A lot has already been accomplished, he added. “For the most part, the county is complaint with ADA.”
The action taken Monday by the commission was required, according to county information, because “ADA requires all state or local government entities with 50 or more employees to appoint a responsible person to coordinate the administrative requirements of ADA compliance and to respond to complaints filed by the public.
“The name and contact information for the responsible person is required to be publicly advertised.”
Boeckman is not officially that contact person.

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