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County preps for tax sale
Treasurer notes there is still time to pay back taxes
jim jordan tax sale pic
Barton County Treasurer Jim Jordan addresses the County Commission Monday morning about the 2020 tax sale. - photo by DALE HOGG Great Bend Tribune

Although the 2020 Barton County tax sale will not take place until October, the stage for that annual sale is already being set, County Treasurer Jim Jordan told County Commissioners Monday morning. He was asking for approval of a resolution authorizing abstract work to be performed in preparation for the sale. 

The resolution also authorizes certain tracts of real estate be sold for back taxes. This money is then distributed to the various taxing entities in the County. 

But, there are options for taxpayers who may have back taxes, he said. His office wants to clear as many of the properties before it comes down to sale time.

“We are trying to help people out,” he said. Jordan said his office can set up payment plans.  

However, if they miss payment or write a bad check, they will be kicked off the plan, real estate will go back on tax sale roles, he said.

Also all taxes are online at under quick links on main page, click on Property tax search.

It’ll open to a new page and one can search by Computer Assisted Mass Appraisal (CAMA) number, name, address or lease name. “It’s very easy to use,” Jordan said. 

But, “for total owed on back taxes, you’ll have to contact our office for the total on penalties and fees,” he said. 

The Treasurer’s Office is located in Room 208 at the Barton County Courthouse, 1400 Main in Great Bend. It can be reached at 620-793-1831.

Abstracting fees

In a related matter, the commission also approved contracting with First American Title Company to handle abstracting services for the sale. 

The company is willing to provide the needed services at $75 per parcel, said Pam Curtis, manager of First American Title Company. The county goes with First American as there are no other abstracting companies in Barton County.

The fee is an increase of $5 over what the firm has charged for the last five years, Curtis said. “Some parcels can be pretty involved and our expenses have gone up.”

However, when a property is redeemed, the person paying pays for the abstracting charge, she said.

Commissioner Jennifer Schartz said the commission is impressed that First American has held its price as steady as it has. This is appreciated, she said.

“She does a good job,” Jordan said. “We are glad to have her.”

Barton County Commission meeting at a glance

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

• Heard an update on the global spreading of the coronavirus from Barton County Health Director Shelly Schneider, who emphasized it has not been found locally. 

• Approved a resolution authorizing abstract work to be performed in preparation for the 2020 tax sale.

• Approved contracting with First American Title Company to handle abstracting services for the sale. The company is willing to provide the needed services at $75 per parcel.

• Approved the renewal of the electronic medical records software contract for the Barton County Health Department.

Electronic medical records are the digital equivalent of paper records or charts at a health provider’s office. In December 2017, the commission approved the purchase of Nightingale Notes Electronic Health Records and first-year subscription from Champ Software, Schneider said. 

The Health Department has received a billing of $25,585 from Champ Software for the annual subscription of 20 named licenses for the period of March 1, 2020 – Feb. 28, 2021.  

• Approved a resolution revamping the Health Department Advisory Committee. The committee wishes to change membership requirements from the current seven to not more than nine. Of that number, no less than five of the committee would be from the allied medical field with at least one appointee being a physician and at least one appointee being from the animal health field, Schneider said. 

In addition to membership, other suggested revisions to the resolution include the removal of the committee bylaws from the resolution.

• Approved updates to the county’s Non-Discrimination Policy and Limited English Proficiency Policy.

To comply with current state and federal grant requirements, policies have both been updated, County Administrator Phil Hathcock said. No changes were made in the policies, they were merely reformatted to meet guidelines.