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New vehicle, bike signs on the way
new deh county update bike sign pic
This is what the new bicycle signs to be installed around the county will look like. - photo by COURTESY PHOTO

 Barton County Engineer Clark Rusco has been working with the engineers on the High Risk Rural Road project to replace regulatory and warning signs on several roadway corridors in the county, including the installation of several new bicycle signs, County Administrator Richard Boeckman told the County Commission Monday morning.

Rusco and Kirkham Michael Engineers out of Ellsworth are preparing the plan. The idea is to plant the new markers with reflectivity that meet new stringent federal standards along select, highly traveled roads.

Rusco said Be Well Barton County, a county-wide task force promoting bicycle and pedestrian transportation, recommended several locations for bike signs. He used the global positioning satellite equipment to survey the exact location of the signs and then the information was forwarded to Kirkham Michael to be figured in the final draft. 

This total project is funded 100 percent by the Kansas Department of Transportation and should begin in April of next year. 

This information was part of Boeckman’s biweekly departmental update. Other highlights included:

County Engineer

• Met with Road and Bridge concerning the repairs to a bridge and culvert structure on SW 130 Avenue and 20 Road. 

• Met with Be Well Barton County and RDG Planners for the Great Bend area meeting for the Master Plan for Biking and Walking in Barton County.

• Met with Kansas Department of Transportation and Federal Highway Administration concerning the several projects, including K-4 Scenic Overlook tower projects.

• Met with Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks, and Tourism concerning the National River Trails Program for the Arkansas River.

• Bridge number 300 project award will set in motion funding for a bridge rehabilitation project from one of KDOT’s newest bridge grant programs. The bridge rehabilitation program requires the project to be under construction within 24 months of Project Award. A 10 percent local match is required for this project. The bridge rehabilitation will remove another posted bridge in Barton County. 

• L&M Construction has completed the construction of a skewed double 4X8 Reinforced Concrete Box (RCB). The project was finaled out this week. Road and Bridge will backfill around the structure and the road will be opened for traffic soon.


  Road and Bridge Director Dale Phillips

• Mowing continues for the third pass on rights of way. Mowing ditches retards drifting of snow during the winter.

• Asphalt work continues in the Hoisington, Beaver and Odin areas. 

• Bridge work was completed south of Albert, setting a concrete structure and drainage work. Other drainage projects were completed with new projects being scheduled daily. 

• Sign work continued as needed. Six sign were repaired after regular business hours.

• Paint striping on sealed roads was completed. Airport Road and North Washington were both striped as well. Additional striping will be performed after completion of asphalt work on College Road, east of the Landfill.

• Inspected by the Kansas Department of Labor. Safety items were noted for repair.

Memorial Parks

• Work continued on the Golden Belt Veterans Memorial stone placement.


Solid Waste Director Phil Hathcock

In the last two weeks, the Barton County Landfill has taken in:

• 979 tons of municipal solid waste

• 318 tons of construction/demolition waste

• 505 tons of special waste

• 661 loads of waste received for disposal

• $55,004.61 of revenue generated through disposal fees

Scheduled household hazardous waste collections:

• Oct. 17 – Barton County Landfill 8 a.m. to noon. This is the last scheduled collection of 2015.

Other notable events:

• 39 tons of waste was collected last week during the Hoisington clean-up week.

• 12 pounds of HHW was collected Oct. 3 from 18 participants at the Larned collection site.

For more information regarding recycling, household hazardous waste, or regular household waste, call the Landfill at 620-793-1898.

Emergency Risk Manager Amy Miller

On Sept. 14, Barton County Emergency Management, Road and Bridge and Solid Waste met with representatives from the Federal Emergency Management Agency for a kick-off meeting for the Presidential Disaster Declaration FEMA-4230-DR-KS. The meeting is one of the steps required of entities to apply for and receive public assistance funds after a formally declared disaster. 

FEMA’s Public Assistance Program provides assistance to State and Local governments by furnishing 75 percent of the project repair costs. The remaining 25 percent will be the responsibility of the applicant and/or the state as determined by the state. 

County Appraiser Barb Esfeld

The Barton County Appraiser’s Office is in the completing studies needed to establish 2016 values, County Appraiser Barb Esfeld said. Data has been collected for improvements added in 2015 and personnel have inspected properties that have sold. 

After completion, the department will value real estate for Jan. 1, 2016. State law requires the county appraiser to establish fair market value for both residential and commercial properties. 

According to Esfeld, “fair market value” means the amount in terms of money that a well-informed buyer is justified in paying and a well-informed seller is justified in accepting for a property in an open and competitive market, assuming that the parties are acting without undue compulsion. 

• Appraisal staff will continue field reviews. As always, Barton County appraisal staff will be in marked vehicles and wearing name tags. Values will be mailed to all property owners by March, 2016. 

County Treasurer Kevin Wondra

The Treasurer’s Office processed a total of 1,681 motor vehicle transactions between Sept. 24, 2015, and Oct. 7, 2015. Of those, 248 were titles for new vehicles. 

The department is preparing for this year’s tax sale. There are 25 tracts on the sale, although additional redemptions are expected.

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