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Members sought for emergency planning committee
A quarter of county flu shots going to those 65 and older
Kansas Division of Emergency Management logo.png

The Barton County Local Emergency Planning Committee is seeking individuals to serve on the committee for two year appointments, Emergency Risk Manager Amy Miller told the Barton County Commission Monday morning. 

Members are needed who represent the following categories: communications media, facilities/industries, community service/civic group, law enforcement, health/medicine, fire fighting, and hospital. 

The Barton County LEPC was organized after the passage of the Superfund Amendment and Reauthorization Act of 1986, Title III Emergency Planning and Community Right to Know Program, Miller said. This legislation required the preparation of a Hazardous Materials emergency plan for counties in Kansas.

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 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. Individuals who are interested in serving on the Barton County LEPC may contact Amy Miller, Emergency Management Director, at 620-793-1919.

The plea for LEPC members was part of the biweekly departmental update presented by commission Chairman Don Davis. Other highlights included:

Emergency Risk Manager 

The Barton County Emergency Management Office held its annual Training and Exercise Planning Workshop on Nov. 29 for emergency response partners within Barton County. Coordination and communication between agencies and facilities is a driving force for the annual meeting, said Emergency Risk Manager Amy Miller. 

Miller said facilities and agencies are often required by grants or regulatory authorities to participate in an emergency exercise. The TEPW provides a forum for planning a single event that may meet the requirements for all agencies/facilities and at the same time provide the opportunity to practice and review policies and procedures.

Scenarios can be developed to meet the needs and requirements of local participants and give local participants the opportunity to communicate and train together before an incident happens. During the planning session, an exercise calendar for 2017 was developed, and a tentative list of exercises for 2018 and 2019 was established.

County Engineer Barry McManaman

• Reece Construction continues to work on the new concrete box culvert three miles north of Beaver. They have placed concrete for the base and are constructing forms and placing reinforcing steel for the walls and top. The Barton County technician is doing daily inspection work.

• Provided permit information for a planned crude oil line that will be bored under a County road.

• Looked at a township road at the request of a township official and followed up with a discussion about possible improvements.

Road and Bridge Director Dale Phillips 

Road and Bridge

• Staff completed work on NE 20 Avenue in South Homestead Township. Staff completed the removal of trees, installed drainage culverts and performed road work as instructed. This project was part of the K-4 scenic overlook drive east of Hoisington and Cheyenne Bottoms access. 

• Mowing continues in northern Barton County and mowers are now near Susank and Claflin, moving south as time and weather allows. Right of way is being mowed out to the edge where possible. 

• Sign crews are working on installation of the High Risk Rural Road grant signs. There are approximately 300 signs yet to install. Signage crews are currently working on north Washington and north McKinley installing new signs. 

• Trucks, plows and spreaders are loaded and ready for severe winter storms.

• Sand pumping continued over the reporting period. Other aggregates were hauled in and stacked for future use. 

Noxious Weed Department:

• Noxious Weed equipment and staff remained on winter weather alert and have equipment ready.

Solid Waste Director Phil Hathcock

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

• 1,075 tons of municipal solid waste

• 126 tons of construction/demolition waste

• 226 tons of special waste

• 453 loads of waste received for disposal

• $52,461.08 of revenue generated through disposal fees


County Treasurer Kevin Wondra

The Treasurer’s Office processed a total of 753 motor vehicle transactions between Dec. 1 and 15. Of those, 310 were vehicle renewals and 195 were new titles. In the past two weeks, staff has renewed, registered or updated seven Commercial vehicles. 

2016 taxes are being processed with mail worked through Dec. 12. As the month goes along, the department anticipates receives one to three additional large trays/bins of mail each day for processing. The department will be closed to the public Dec. 30 so all payments received are entered before the end of the year. 

Health Director Shelly Schneider

• Immunizations – The doses of administered Flu Vaccines have increased since last year, with about 25 percent of the increase going to the 65 ages and older population. “This is a very important age group as they are more vulnerable to the flu,” Health Director Shelly Schneider said. This same group was given the high-dose flu vaccine. Flu Vaccine is still available. Contact the Health Department to make an appointment for vaccination.

• Epidemiology – the Health Department has been alerted that there are confirmed cases of mumps in Missouri, Arkansas and in Kansas (Johnson County). Staff is on the alert for signs and symptoms in the Barton County community. As of today, there are no laboratory confirmed cases of mumps in Barton County. 

“This can change at any moment,” she said. “Citizens need to take every precaution. Good handwashing, covering mouths with coughing or sneezing, and washing hands after blowing noses are all very good ways to heed off the virus.”