By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Flood plain mapping project progressing
new deh county update cow creek pic
Above is a shot of Cow Creek near Lyons. The creek and its watershed are currently under study. - photo by PHOTO COURTESY USGS

 County Engineer Barry McManaman attended the Cow Creek Working Group meeting on March 8, the on-going Kansas Division of Water Resources project involving the Cow Creek Watershed.

The Kansas Division of Water Resources (DWR) is currently doing a study of the Cow Creek watershed in Barton and Rice counties that will eventually result in new floodplain insurance maps, McManaman told the Barton County Commission Monday morning. The current maps were developed in 1988 and new technology is being used to provide more accurate ones. 

The DWR asked both counties to form working groups that will be asked to look at the draft copy of the maps and provide input as they are being developed. Barton County notified residents of the opportunity to volunteer to be a part of the working group and currently there are 15 people who have been recognized by the County Commission as a part of the group. 

There was an informational meeting in Lyons on Feb. 23 to bring the working groups and local agencies up to date on what has transpired so far and to provide a timeline for the project. “The DWR has gathered field data and is using modeling techniques to predict storm runoff and identify the areas that are considered to be in the flood zone,” he said. 

As the draft maps are developed, the working groups will meet periodically to review the maps and provide input to the DWR. The public will be given an opportunity in an open house to review the draft maps. 

It is tentatively planned to have the public review occur beginning in the late summer of 2016, McManaman said. “Sometime in late 2017 the maps will be considered to be in their final version and will only be able to be changed by an official appeal, so it is important that the public take the opportunity to look at the maps and give their concerns to the DWR.”

The details for the open house will be announced later this year. 

The report was part of a bi-weekly departmental update presented to the commission. Other highlights included:

Road and Bridge Director Dale Phillips 

Road and Bridge

• Staff continues cleaning ditches and culverts at several locations in the northern part of the county. 

• Road intersections are being repaired north of Odin and Hoisington and south of Galatia. This work requires motor grader operations and hauling of appropriate materials. 

• Bridge crew set a pre-fab concrete box at a collapsed culvert location on NE 40 Road north of the Landfill. Several culverts in the area were repaired in cooperation with Great Bend Township.

• Bridge crew staff will set two large culverts on NE 70 Avenue to replace two rusted out culverts in cooperation with Lakin Township.

• Sign work continued with repairs and replacement of damaged signs.

Noxious Weed

• Staff attended the 78th Annual Weed Conference with staff obtaining recertification hours, networking with other counties, learning about the new Noxious Weed laws equipment changes. 

• Chemical sales for Musk Thistle has started. Farmer cooperation notices being sent out. 

Landfill Manager Phil Hathcock

In the past reporting period, the Barton County Landfill took in:

• 947.24 tons of municipal solid waste

• 242.05 tons of construction/demolition waste

• 84.06 tons of special waste

• 616 loads of waste received for disposal

• $48,100.71 of revenue generated through disposal fees

If one has any questions regarding recycling, household hazardous waste or regular household waste, they can call the landfill at 620-793-1898.

County Appraiser Barb Esfeld

Personal property renditions have been mailed. They need to be signed and returned by March 15. Oil and gas renditions are due by April 1. If renditions are mailed back after the due dates, penalties apply. 

“As Barton County does not like to impose penalties, office staff will be happy to assist any taxpayer in filing in a timely manner,” Esfeld said. 

Real Estate valuation notices were mailed on March 1. Taxpayers have until April 1 to schedule an informal meeting to discuss appraised value if needed. 

Call 620-793-1821 for assistance. 

County Treasurer Kevin Wondra

• The Treasurer’s Office processed a total of 1,815 motor vehicle transactions between Feb. 25 and March 9. Of those, 1,282 were renewals for vehicles and 259 were new titles. In the past two weeks, personnel have renewed 574 commercial vehicles. 

• Abstract have been completed on all the parcels for the tax sale. At this time, there are 115 properties on the sale. 

• The bookkeepers are in the process of reconciling the bank accounts. All daily work is current.