In other business Monday morning, the Barton County Commission:
• Adjourned into an executive session to discuss non-elected personnel for 20 minutes and then for 15 more minutes. Commissioners emerged and no action was taken.
• Approved appointing Brad Kershner as treasurer of the Liberty Township Board upon recommendation of other board for a term that expires Jan. 6, 2017. This was necessary after the commission approved the resignation of Greg Stukey as the board treasurer as of Monday. Stukey had moved into Great Bend and out of the township.
• Approved naming Alan Bauer, Kevin Kramp, James Welch, Barry McManaman and Judy Goreham to the Cow Creek Wastershed Working Group. The Kansas Department of Agriculture, Division of Water Resources, in cooperation with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, is engaging in a new RiskMAP project in the Cow Creek watershed that will involve Barton County. The goal is to establish new flood plain guidelines and the group offer suggestions and gather public input on the changes.
Barton County continues to seek applications for appointment.
• Approved contracting with Straight Line Striping Inc. out of Nebraska to stripe roads in Barton County. The Road and Bridge Department received the quote to stripe approximately 105 miles of roads that will be sand sealed or asphalted this year, mostly in the northwest part of the county. The estimated cost, at no more than $90,000 was included in the 2016 Road and Bridge Budget as an expected operating expense, Road and Bridge Director Dale Phillips said.
It is cheaper for the county to do this than it is for Road and Bridge personnel to do the work, Phillips said. The county has contracted with Straight Line for several years. The price to paint the center and side stripes is the same as it was last year.
• Approved an update to the Barton County Comprehensive Plan. On Feb. 9, the Barton County Planning Commission recommended that the Barton County Commission adopt a general update of the plan. Revisions for the 2016 Amendment include incorporation of all changes since its last update in 2005, to include the Zoning Regulations adopted in 2013; changes to the Future Land Use Map, all statistical data and a complete clerical review, said Zoning Administrator Judy Goreham.
• Ratified the purchase of carpet for the Engineering/Emergency Management Suite from Abby Carpet and Floor for $3,273. County Engineer Barry McManaman researched options to replace carpet in the Engineering/Emergency Management Suite. Given that the Engineer’s Office is relatively free of furniture, County Administrator Richard Boeckman authorized purchasing the carpet. The order was given in hopes that the carpeting could be laid before the furniture arrives.
Noting that FFA helps promote agriculture and build the leaders of tomorrow, the Barton County Commission Monday morning approved a proclamation honoring this as National FFA Week.
“I am honored to have these fine folks with us,” Commissioner Kenny Schremmer said as he introduced the Great Bend High School FFA members and their sponsor and vocational agriculture teacher Rollie Peter who attended the meeting.
The proclamation notes that FFA promotes premier leadership, personal growth and career success among its members and ensures a steady supply of young professionals to meet the growing demands in the science, business and technology of agriculture
Present with Peter were GBHS FFA members President Lakin Funk, senior, Vice-president Jessica Disque, junior, Secretary Cory Burnham, junior, Treasure Desteny English, junior, Reporter Katie Maneth, sophomore, Sentinel Lauren Miller, sophomore, Parliamentarian John Skinner, junior, Historian Grant Keller, sophomore, and Chaplin Tristian Mitchell, junior,
“They’ve been a great bunch,” Peter said, adding they have learned valuable lessons. “This is something they will carry with them throughout their lives.”
The students took turns telling the commissioners about the organization.
The Great Bend chapter was started in February 1940 and today it has 80 members and 20 community sponsors. Founded in Kansas City, Mo., FFA has been around nationally since 1928 and now has over 630,000 members in all 50 states.
Started as a boys-only organization, it became coeducational in 1969. Today, nearly half the membership is female with many of them holding officer positions.
There are three chapters in Barton County – Claflin, Ellinwood and Great Bend.
Many of the Great Bend kids were among 1,500 Kansas FFA members to attend the state convention last summer, and some even attended the national conference, Peter said. These were opportunities to form life-long friendships.
“I’m proud to see young people involved in something,” commission Chairman Don Davis said.