County to observe July 4
County business offices, the Health Department, the Records Division of the Sheriff’s Office and the Landfill will be closed for Independence Day on Monday. Emergency services will be in normal operation on that day.
After nearly two decades of service, 20th Judicial District Juvenile Services Director Laurie White will retire as of Thursday. The Barton County Commission Monday morning took time to honor her for her years of dedication .
“Since White was hired for the Juvenile Services program in 1998, she has spent the last two decades battling for the rights of area youth,” a letter recognizing White read. “Ms. White, having worked under multiple governors, commissioners and administrators, always strived to ensure that department personnel exhausted every means to help the children referred to the Juvenile Services program.”
“This is a bitter-sweet moment,” County Administrator Richard Boeckman said. “Her efforts impacted the lives of not only clients, but families and communities across Kansas.”
For the past 14 years, White has led the department. “It certainly has been challenging over the years,” Boeckman said.
But, with constant changes and increased mandates from the State of Kansas, the office has functioned smoothly, he said. “She is dedicated to juveniles. She is always dedicated to the employees.”
“I am going to miss this position,” White said. However, with continued convulsions at the state level, she doesn’t envy those she leaves behind.
It was always her dream to work with juveniles, White said. However, life got in the way.
Nonetheless, after raising six children, she returned to school and fulfilled this ambition. “Even though you take a different course, you can always get back on the right course.”
In related action, the commission appointed an Marissa Woodmansee as interim director. She currently serving as juvenile intake and assessment coordinator for that department
Woodmansee has been with the 20th Judicial District Juvenile Services program since 1999, Boeckman said.
White said Woodmansee has been one of her “right hands.” “She understands the changes. She knows what the youth in our area need.”
“I appreciate the opportunity,” Woodmansee said, adding she will keep the commission appraised of what is happening with the department.
In other business Monday morning, the Barton County Commission:
• Approved the purchase of a hard floor scrubber. Gary Bruner, facilities management maintenance person, asked that the commission consider the purchase of a scrubber, for cleaning the existing Terazzo and tile floors in the courthouse, and a carpet extractor - essentially a commercial shampooer. The Clarke equipment, totaling $5,550, be purchased from Sage.
Bruner said current machines are about 15 years old and don’t run like they are supposed to, .