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Commission honors the retiring Wornkey
She has served the county since 1980
wornkey honored
Barton County Commissioner Shawn Hutchinson, right, honors retiring Register of Deeds Pam Wornkey Tuesday morning. Also pictured is Wornkey’s husband Tom. - photo by DALE HOGG Great Bend Tribune

County offices to close for Labor Day

No commission meeting next Tuesday

Barton County business offices will be closed in observance of the Labor Day holiday on Monday. The Health Department, the Records Division of the Sheriff’s Office and the landfill will also be closed.  Emergency services will be in normal operation. 

Also, County Commissioners Tuesday morning decided that since their next Tuesday meeting would follow Labor they would not meet next week.

Barton County Register of Deeds Pam Wornkey announced her plans to retire Aug. 1. On Tuesday morning, the County Commission recognized her for her years of service. Her last day on the job is Thursday.

“The best indicator of the future is a study of the past and holds true for you,” said commission Chairman Shawn Hutchinson, District 3, said, reading from a letter to Wornkey. “You will continue to be a remarkable presence in this community for years to come.

“It is apparent from your employment history with the county that you’re centered on the greater good time and time again, you stepped into various positions which for the betterment of our citizens,” he said. “You carried your skills, dedication and commitment to detail into your role as registered of deeds. 

“You have been remarkable in ensuring that the professionalism of the office remained impeccable while moving forward with modernization efforts, efforts made within a modest budget,” he said. “We wish you the best in your retirement and pledge to support your office during the transfer in leadership and you will be missed.”

Workney has been employed with the county since February 1980 when she was hired as a dispatcher for the Sheriff’s Office. Before joining the Register of Deeds Office, she has served the county in both the Sheriff’s Office and Central Kansas Community Corrections.  

After being appointed as the deputy register of deeds in 2009, she was elected as the register of deeds with her first term beginning in 2013.    

“The county has always been my home. I’ve never really wanted to go or do anything else but serve the citizens of Barton County,” Wornkey said. “It’s been a great opportunity to do that. It’s been great.”

But, her leaving “is kind of bittersweet,” she said. While excited about the adventure of retirement, she will miss her county family.

County officials were also been invited to a retirement celebration honoring Wornkey. The event takes place from 2-4 p.m. Thursday at the Register of Deeds Office, 1500 Kansas, Great Bend.  

Current Deputy Register of Deeds Glennda French was sworn in as Wornkey’s successor Monday. She takes office Friday.

Barton County Commission meeting at a glance

Here is a quick look at what the Barton County Commission did Tuesday morning:

•  Recognized retiring Register of Deeds Pam Wornkey.

• Approved a resolution establishing weight limits on certain county bridges.

Engineering load ratings have been performed on certain county-maintained bridges as required by federal regulations, said County Engineer Barry McManaman. These regulations require that weight limit signs be installed at bridges that do not have enough capacity to safely support State of Kansas legal loads. 

The resolution requires that the described bridges be posted with weight limits until such time that said bridge is replaced or conditions are corrected. 

•  Approved the Central Kansas Community Corrections Fiscal Year 2024 carry-over reimbursement plan budget.

The Kansas Department of Corrections requires a budget submission of local program funding collected by community corrections agencies from program fees and reimbursements, said CKCC Director Amy Boxberger. These budgets require the review and approval of the Barton County commissioners, as Barton is the administrative county for the 20th Judicial District. 

Following the agenda meeting, the following appointments are scheduled:

•  9:45 a.m. – Golden Belt Veterans Memorial project update with Works Director Darren Williams, Administrative Assistant Diana Watson and Melanie Ryan. 

• 10:15 a.m. – budgetary submissions with Juvenile Services Director Marissa Woodmansee.

• 10:45 a.m. – regular business discussion with County Administrator Matt Patzner.