By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Juvenile Services faces budget uncertainty
new deh more county pic
On Monday, the Barton County Commission approved the Juvenile Services budget and learned that the agencys funding may be subject to state budget woes. - photo by COURTESY PHOTO

 The Barton County Commission Monday morning approved the 2016 20th Judicial District Juvenile Services Department budget. But, the funding for the agency remains in limbo as the Kansas Legislature continues struggling with budget shortfalls, Assistant Director Mike Daniel said.

The money comes from the Kansas Department of Corrections in the form of a block grant to the 20th. But, even though the funds come from the state, the plan required a nod from the County Commission since Barton County is the administrative county for the district.

For the upcoming year, the budget will be $668,233. However, that is $21,000 less than in 2014, Daniel said, adding that figure won’t be finalized until the end of the legislative session.

The Juvenile Services office supervises juvenile offenders in a five county area consisting of Barton, Ellsworth, Rice and Russell and Stafford counties. It is the host agency for six separate programs available to all youth and families in the district.  

Those programs consist of Juvenile Intake and Assessment, Juvenile Intensive Supervision Probation, Community Case Management, Teen Court, Project S.T.A.Y. (School Truancy Alternative for Youth) and Journey to Change. These are what are known as “graduated sanctions” aimed at meeting the different needs of juvenile offenders, Daniel said.

In other business Monday morning, the Barton County Commission:

• Reappointed Gloria Hernandez to the Central Kansas Community Corrections Advisory Board for another two-year term. Under the leadership of the CKCC director, the board designs, implements and evaluates community-based corrections programs for eligible offenders who would otherwise be incarcerated in state prisons or local jails.  This includes the development of the annual Comprehensive Plan. State law governs the advisory board membership, qualifications and appointment provisions. Hernandez has been representing a “general” position and was appointed by the Barton County Commission. She agreed to serve another term, CKCC Director Amy Boxberger said.  

• Heard and update on the engravings at the Golden Belt Veterans’ Memorial. After Memorial Parks Advisory Committee Chairman Mic Lang presented a recent update, Dale Hogg, Great Bend Tribune, filed a story on engravings. County Administrator Richard Boeckman said the story and coverage by KVGB increased interest.

Boeckman said they have had 25 new veterans sign up in the past two weeks and have had several calls asking for information. 

So far, 307 veterans are represented for a total of 415 lines. The goal is to have 540 lines sold so the first stone with the names can be installed, hopefully by Veterans Day.

• Heard a report on the 2015 tax sale. On April 7, the tax sale petition was filed with the Clerk of the District Court. Subsequent to the filing, the county, where possible, mailed parties to the sale a summons, a copy of the petition and the corresponding limited Certificate of Title by certified mail, Boeckman said.

As necessary, other parties will be notified via publication. To avoid having a property sold at auction, owners must pay all taxes from, generally, 2011 forward in the Treasurer’s Office and a redemption fee of $170 to the Clerk of the District Court.

As of now, there are 127 tracts on what is also known as a tax foreclosure action, Boeckman said. There have also been 15 redemptions and several inquiries.

Come time for the sale in October, Boeckman said they hope to have all the properties taken care of so none have to be sold.

• Heard a departmental update from Boeckman.