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Next emergency meeting is Tuesday
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Another opportunity for local residents to have input in the county’s emergency plan is coming up, according to Barton County Emergency Risk Manager Amy Miller.
Miller has announced that the next meeting on the Barton County Hazard Mitigation Plan has been set for 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday. It will be held in the courthouse, she added.
“Interested individuals are invited to attend the meeting to learn more about the plan and provide comments at this second public meeting concerning the development of a Natural Hazard Mitigation Plan for Barton County.”
At the first meeting, steps were taken to prepare a draft of the county plan and that is available at a number of locations around the county, Miller noted.
The draft plan can be viewed at:
• Barton County Emergency Mgmt. Office, 1400 Main, Room 108, Great Bend
• Barton County Clerk’s Office, 1400 Main, Room 202, Great Bend 
• Independent Township Library, 311 W. Pine, Claflin
• Ellinwood Library, 210 N Schiller Ave., Ellinwood 
• Hoisington Public Library, 169 S. Walnut, Hoisington 
• Great Bend Public Library, 1409 Williams, Great Bend
• Online at:  under Current Events & Important News 
After Tuesday night’s meeting, Miller explained earlier, there will be a second comment period and then the materials from these meetings will be sent to state officials and from there, on to the national officials.
Now is the time for people to get involved, Miller stressed. “It’s very important that we push this along.”
Because of past disaster impacts here, Barton County ranks 17th out of 105 Kansas counties in a current public siren program, so this information could help see that assistance develop.
But it is also important if the county seeks help in any future event, as well, she explained.
Miller explained earlier, “the purpose of a Hazard Mitigation Plan is to guide hazard mitigation to better protect the people and property of Barton County. The Barton County Hazard Mitigation Plan will be a multi-jurisdictional plan, meaning that not only the county, but also local governments with taxing authority, such as cities, townships and school districts, are planning partners. 
Miller stressed, it’s crucial that the ball isn’t dropped now, because failure will hurt all Barton County communities, if there is another natural disaster here, and with the possibility of damaging winter storms only months away, that is a real possibility.