The Barton County Commission may, at least through the budget season, meet twice a week. The idea was raised Monday morning by District 3 Commissioner Shawn Hutchinson because of the large number of items on the commission’s plate, noting this would allow deeper and more fresh discussions.
Although nothing was finalized Monday, the meetings would likely last a couple hours and take place in the afternoon on a Wednesday or later in the week. These would be announced public meetings with the public and media welcomed to attend.
“Our meetings have been very brief by design,” Hutchinson said of short regular meeting agendas. “That’s because we’re spending the entire rest of the day working on our budget.”
There is a lot of material to cover and digest, he said, noting this can be a little overwhelming. “And by the end of the day, we’re all kind of burnt out.”
The other commissioners were generally supportive of the idea. But, District 5 Commissioner Jennifer Schartz didn’t want to hold such meetings just for the sake of holding them.
After the budget is done “then we’ll see how it goes. Sometimes times things can just can be wrapped up on Monday pretty easily, and I wouldn’t want to drag everybody in here and not have anything significant to talk about.”
“Other than traditionally commissioners meet on Mondays, there’s nothing magical about it,” County Counselor Patrick Hoffman said. “As long as you, of course, follow (the Kansas Open Meetings Act) and announce it, you can do whatever you want to with the schedule.”