Commission honors FFA Week
BY DALE HOGG
Times are good for the FFA program at Great Bend High School, club sponsor and vocational agriculture teacher Rollie Peter told the Barton County Commission Monday morning.
“We’re growing,” he said. “This year we hit the ground running.”
His remarks came as the Commission recognized this as FFA Week in Barton County. The proclamation noted that the organization provided a strong foundation for the future of agriculture and promoted leadership and other positive characteristics, such as volunteerism, citizenship and patriotism.
“FFA is very important to all of us,” said club President Alaycia Ryan, a GBHS senior. “We really want to focus on building young leadership.”
With 75 members, she said the numbers are improving. This is good since several of the officers are seniors and will graduate this year.
Club Vice-president Logan Evers, another senior, said the GBHS club has been around for 70 years. Nationally, there are 7,200 chapters in all 50 states with 500,000 members.
Also present Monday were MacKenzie Thomberg, a senior and club secretary, and Chris Nollette, a junior and club parliamentarian.
“It’s always nice for us to congratulate young people,” Commissioner Jennifer Schartz said. “We have a lot of great kids in our county.”
In other business Monday morning, the Commission:
• Approved the resignation of Martin R.(Marty) Becker as the Fairview Township treasurer effective Monday as he is moving to Russell County.
The Commission then appointed Jane M. Steinert as his replacement effective today. County Clerk Donna Zimmerman said Steinert had just resigned as the township’s clerk, but said she could fill this post until the term expires in February 2017.
The transferring of county funds may have been routine business for the Barton County Commission Monday morning, but it was good financial news.
The Commission approved a resolution transferring and carrying over 2013 unexpended totalling $40,000 to the Capital Improvement Fund and $570,000 to Equipment Replacement Fund. “This is a normal practice year to year if there are funds remaining,” said county Financial Officer Jessica Wilson, adding there have been years when this wasn’t possible.
“It’s great to be able to do this,” she said. “It just shows great fiscal responsibility. We ended the year very well.”
Here’s how the carry-over funds broke down:
Of the $40,000 that went to Capital Improvement, $30,000 came from the Road and Bridge Fund and $10,000 came from the Cemetery Fund. Of the $570,000 that went to Equipment Replacement, $100,000 came from the General Fund, $50,000 from the General Fund/Elections, $340,000 from the Road and Bridge Fund, $30,000 from the Noxious Weeds Department Fund, and $50,000 from the Health Department Fund.
“With these proposed transfers, there is still adequate cash carry forward in each fund for the 2014 budget,” Wilson said. The moves put the county in better shape as it begins the 2014 and 2015 budget years.
“This makes us really happy,” Commissioner Jennifer Schartz said. This transferred money acts as sort of a savings account allowing the county to make purchases with have having to take on debt.
Speaking of owing money, Commission Chairman Kenny Schremmer noted that Barton County is debt free. Barton is one of only a handful of the 105 counties in Kansas that can make this claim.