By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
County hopes to spark Vet Memorial donations
new deh county commission vets memorial art.tif
Shown is an artists rendition of the proposed Veterans Memorial at Golden Belt Memorial Park north of Great Bend. - photo by COURTESY ARTWORK

On other business Monday morning, the County Commission:
• Approved the purchase of a specialized grouting equipment for the Road and Bridge Department at a cost of $11,594.59 from ChemGrout, LaGrange Park, Ill. On March 18, initial information was presented on the need for equipment which can be used on bridge decks, pavement resurfacing, slab raising and other construction projects. Specifically planned projects include grouting the historic stone arc bridges located in the Claflin area. New information was presented on the air-powered, skid-mounted machine. Making the recommendation Dale Phillips, Road and Bridge director.
The machine, which is using to squirt grout into cracks to prevent water from seeping in, can also be used on concrete bridges. It will take about eight weeks for the unit to arrive.
A grouter first eyed by the county cost about twice as much, but it was determined that this machine would do just fine, Phillips said.
• Approved a change in how the fireworks stand inspection fee is split between the county and local fire districts. Since 1996, the county has inspected fireworks stands, located in Barton County but outside any city corporate limits, for compliance with state regulations. A fee, set in 1996, is split, 10 percent processing fee for the county and 90 percent for the fire district, based on location of the fireworks stands. As Environmental Management is currently responsible for the inspections, Environmental Manager Judy Goreham conducted a cost survey. She suggested that the split be changed to 25-75 percent to cover the cost of the service, County Administrator Richard Boeckman said.
Last year, the county spend about $200 on these inspections, but only recouped $92, Boeckman said. The total generated from the inspections in 2012 was $925, and the vendors paid on a sliding scale depending on the size. In the future, the county may raise the inspection fee.
• Authorized the submission of proposed revisions to Barton County’s Floodplain Management Regulations to the Kansas Department of Agriculture, Division of Water Resources. Barton County staff have been made aware that a section of the current floodplain regulations, adopted under Resolution 2009-21, must be amended to allow certain types of development within the floodplain in Barton County, Boeckman said. The county restrictions had been more restrictive than those set by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
Prior to local adoption, the proposed revisions must be reviewed for FEMA compliance to assure minimum Floodplain Management standards are met. The agency charged with this review and oversight is the Division of Water Resources.
• Approved the purchase of new software for Central Kansas Community Corrections for $2,439. In order to unify computer services, Amy Boxberger, CKCC director, requested the seven computers used by departmental staff be equipped with Microsoft Office Professional 2010, the Office version used by the Kansas Department of Corrections.
• Heard an update on the activities of county departments from Boeckman.

The Memorial Parks Advisory Committee was given the go-ahead by the Barton County Commission Monday morning to hold two much-needed fundraisers to build the Veterans Memorial at Golden Belt Memorial Park north of Great Bend.
Committee member Larry Buczinski said they are planning on holding a barbecue dinner on June 15 at the Great Bend American Legion post home and a “patriotic musical event” at the Crest Theater some time in July or August. The group is seeking donations to make the meal happen, and arranging with local singers and veterans to perform during the special performance.
These were the two fundraisers given the nod by commissioners.
The goal was $55,000.00 for the project. However, less than $3,000 has been collected.
The plan is for the memorial to feature representations of each branch of military in the nation, including Army, Air Force, Coast Guard, Marines, Navy and Merchant Marines (who receive veterans status for the years 1942-46). A gray granite marker will contain emblems for each along with the inscription “A nation that forgets its defenders will itself be forgotten. This is but a small tribute to all the veterans whose names are forever etched on these tablets. We are eternally grateful for their service to this nation. All gave some, some gave all.”
The contributed names of vets will be carved into tablets that flank the center stone. There will also be flags representing the branches of service.
In February 2012, the Barton County Commission approved plans for the fund drive. The memorial will be open to all veterans with Barton County ties, living or deceased.
The Road and Bridge Department has spent the last nine years fixing up the two memorial parks north of Great Bend the county inherited when the private ownership left. This is when plans for a veterans’ section at Golden Belt began.
The county sought design bids from two architecture firms; however, they proved too expensive and the committee took over the design effort. They then sought proposals and chose Chet Cale, Great Bend, for the work.