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Fair market values being set in Barton County
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The Barton County Appraiser’s Office is starting the 2015 final review process. This is a process where appraisals for the Jan. 1, 2015 values are set, said County Appraiser Barb Estes.
Some properties require field reviews and others are reviewed in the office via recent field work and pictures. Kansas statutes require the county appraiser to establish fair market value for both residential and commercial properties in the County.
“Fair market value” means the amount 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, Estes said. Appraisal staff will drive by some properties and review for accuracy.
As always, Estes said, Barton County appraisal staff will be in marked vehicles and wearing name tags. This process will last up to March 1, 2015.
The appraiser’s report was part of County Administrator Richard Boeckman’s bi-weekly departmental update delivered to the County Commission Monday morning. Other highlights included:

Road and Bridge Director Dale Phillips
Road and Bridge Department
• Mowing continues on roadsides in the Odin and Beaver area. Roadsides are being mowed out full width to stop snow drifting this winter.
• Center Line and Edge line Paint Stripping was completed in the Odin area on repaired asphalt miles.
• Drainage and tree cleanup was started in cooperation with the City of Ellinwood. This project should take two to three weeks.
• Snow Training was held. Employees from the Solid Waste and Noxious Weed Departments also participated.
• Sign work continued with bicycle warning signs being placed as time permits. Regular sign work was ongoing.
• Mixed salt and sand for the winter ahead. Sand was screened to remove bigger aggregate to promote a safer roadway application.
• Winter planning continues and several major drainage projects are planned.
• Staff are working with Land M Construction on County Bridge Projects.
• Road and Bridge staff helped deliver and retrieve voting machines for the County Clerk.
Noxious Weed Department
• Spraying was done at the Cheyenne Bottoms Scenic Overlook by Redwing to control weed growth and to beautify the area and improve access to the viewing area.
• Noxious Weed staff delivered and retrieved voting machines for the County Clerk.
Memorial Parks
• Prepped the parks for Veterans Day. Staff treated annual weeds at both Memorial Parks.

Solid Waste Director Phil Hathcock
In the last month, the landfill took in:
• 1,843.45 tons of municipal solid waste
• 1,435.72 tons of construction/demolition waste
• 2,070.21 tons of special waste
• 1,254 loads of waste received for disposal
It generated $181,513.28 of revenue generated through disposal fees
The Solid Waste Department transported 65 mattresses to Hutchinson Correctional facility for recycling and diverted 2.1 tons of E-Waste for recycling to Rice County.
There will be no more scheduled Household Hazardous Waste collections until April of 2015.  But, that may change, Boeckman said.

Amy Miller, Emergency Risk Manager

The Barton County Local Emergency Planning Committee, sponsored by Barton County Emergency Management, met on Oct. 20 for its quarterly meeting. During the meeting the committee completed its annual review of the Emergency Support Function Oil and Hazardous Materials, which is a portion of the Barton County Emergency Operations Plan. The committee also discussed the Region E Regional Hazard Mitigation Plan which has been submitted to FEMA for review and approval. Barton County is one of eight counties to participate in the regional hazard mitigation plan.
The committee also approved of Dec. 2 as the date for the annual Training and Exercise Planning Workshop. The workshop provides an opportunity for attendees to review and cooperatively schedule their emergency exercise and training needs for the upcoming calendar year, explained Amy Miller, Emergency Management Director.
On October 22, Miller was an evaluator for a multi-county Foreign Animal Disease tabletop exercise in Harvey County. The exercise was developed by the Kansas Department of Agriculture to test recent updates to their emergency response plans. By participating as an evaluator, Miller was able to use the experience to meet some grant requirements of the Emergency Management Grant Program which provides funds directly to Barton County for meeting specific emergency management actions and objectives.

911 Director Doug Hubbard
October 2014 statistics
 911 landlines, 331
911 wireless, 955
Administrative lines, 10,312
 Total calls, 11,598
 Radio calls, 106,171
 Calls for service, 3,308

Public Health Director Shelly Schneider
• Ebola conferences have been scheduled for once a month with the decrease in risk of Ebola on US Soil.
Clinic visits in September and October –  2,476
• Child care licensing visits, 39
• Communicable diseases 00,22
• Child health, 21
• Family planning, 220
• Healthy Start, 55
• Immunizations 1,809
• Maternal and infant, 76
• Sexually transmitted diseases, 41
• Tuberculosis program, 157
• Women, Infant and Children program, 768
• The Barton County Health Department Advisory Board has three member terms expiring. It has initiated advertisements in the local papers. The out-going members have been notified. They will have a meeting in December to decide whether we continue to meet monthly or drop back to quarterly.