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Commission names emergency planning committee members
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 The Barton County Commission Monday morning made appointments to the Barton County Local Emergency Planning Committee, the body charged with coordinating a response in case of a hazardous materials disaster.

The following new individuals were approved: 

Alicia Straub, local official- Barton County Board of County Commissioners

Brittney Glenn, Ellinwood Emergency Medical Services director

Karen VanBrimmer, Hoisington City Council

Reappointments were:

Amy Miller, Barton County Emergency Management

Heather Acheson, Golden Belt Humane Society

Donald Halbower, American Red Cross

Phillip Hathcock, Barton County Landfill manager

Chris Komarek, Ellinwood fire chief

EMS Sara Krom, Sunflower Diversified Services

Dale Phillips, Barton County Road and Bridge director

Martin Miller, Great Bend Municipal Airport manager

Julie Smith, United Way of Central Kansas

Scott Fleming, Hoisington Emergency Medical Services director

Miller will now forward the list of nominees to the Kansas Division of Emergency Management and the Kansas Commission on Emergency Planning and Response. “We need to get their blessing,” Miller said.

With the Superfund Amendment and Reauthorization Act of 1986, Title III Emergency Planning and Community Right to Know Program (SARA Title Ill, EPCRA), came a requirement to prepare a Hazardous Materials (HazMat) Emergency Plan for counties in Kansas, Barton County Emergency Management Director Amy Miller said. Barton County submitted its first Hazardous Materials Plan in the fall of 1988. 

In addition, Local Emergency Planning Committees (LEPC’s) were designated in Kansas by county, Miller said. As a result, counties in Kansas are asked to submit nominees to the Commission on Emergency Planning and Response to be officially appointed as members of their respective county LEPC. 

An LEPC is responsible for establishing and maintaining a Hazardous Materials Plan, conducting exercises of the plan and serving as the right-to-know program’s point of contact. The LEPC is comprised of representatives from the following groups: state/local officials; law enforcement; firefighting; emergency management; health; hospital; broadcast media and/or communications media; transportation; local environmental group; community service/civic group; emergency medical services; and facilities/industries regulated by SARA Title III.

According to the LEPC By-Laws, the following areas are to have members nominated/appointed in odd numbered years: state/local officials, emergency medical personnel, emergency management, local environmental groups, transportation, and community groups. This means half are appointed every year.