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College trustees approve budget publication
Cole Schwarz chosen to fill board vacancy

The Barton Community College Board of Trustees met at 4 p.m. Tuesday, July 28, in Room F-30 of the Fine Arts Building and via Zoom.

Mark Dean, vice president of administration, reviewed the operational budget and the budget notice publication for the board’s consideration. These were also reviewed at the board’s July study session and have not changed.

The published budget keeps the mill levy at approximately the same value as last year, which in turn decreases the tax request by approximately $446,303. The county valuation decreased significantly because of major decreases in oil/gas, as well as decreases for personal property and utilities. The mill levy request, an estimated 32.96 mills, is based on the valuation numbers provided by the county on June 15.

A public budget hearing is set for 4 p.m. on Tuesday, August 11, in room F-30 at the college.

The operational budget anticipates the college will need to draw almost $870,000 from cash reserves.

“It’s been a challenging year with all of the unknowns, which we still face,” said Chairman Mike Johnson. “We’re in much better shape than other institutions.”

Board vacancy

In other business, the board heard from four applicants seeking to fill a vacancy on the board created by the untimely death of former trustee Mike Boys. “It was a tremendous loss to the community as well as to this board,” Chairman Johnson said.

The process for filling a board vacancy is outlined by the state, Johnson said. There were five applicants at first but one withdrew his name because of some changes in his life.

“I’m very pleasantly surprised at the caliber of applicants we received,” Johnson said. “Unfortunately, we’re only able to pick one today.” He encouraged the other three to consider running for a seat on the board in the future.

The applicants were Carl Helm, Cole Schwarz, Jean Harrison and Dennis Call.

Cole Schwarz was chosen by board vote.

The board also voted to extend Barton President Dr. Carl Heilman’s contract for another year.

Other items on the agenda were a monitoring report on contingency planning, a presentation on the 2020 Summer Instructional Excellence Academy, approval of athletic insurance and approval of new personnel.

Vice President Elaine Simmons and Dee Ann Smith were recognized for 35 years of service to the college.

New personnel

The following new personnel at the Barton County campus were approved:

- Sasha Bingaman – graphic design specialist

- Diane McReynolds – instructor of nursing; contract 

- Norma Hernandez – custodian

- Carson DuBose – assistant softball coach

- Matthew Gilbert – head swimming coach; contract 

- Malia Sullivan – instructor of nursing; contract