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Pesky mice disable 911 radio tower
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The Barton County Commission Monday morning ratified the purchase of replacement generator for the Susank TAC 17 communications tower. Mice destroyed the existing generator that was installed in 2011 by chewing through wires. 

“This tower provides a vital link in the communications system between dispatch and emergency service,” said 911 Director Dana Popp. But, “the current status is non-fuctioning.” 

Given its importance, the commissioners authorized Popp to purchase a 16 KW generator and stand from Hammeke Electric. The cost, to include the new unit, trade of current unit and labor, is $3,987 which will come from 911 tax money.  

The stand will keep the generator off the ground to prevent further mouse damage.

In other business Monday morning, the Barton County Commission:

• Approved training opportunities for James Jordan, county treasurer-elect. Jordan will take office in October Prior to that, he has registered for several training opportunities. These include The Kansas County Treasurers Association Legislative Conference, a certification class and three on-line classes. In addition to registration, mileage, hotel and meal costs also be reimbursed for a total of $825. 

“It’s good to see him taking the initiative,” Commissioner Alicia Straub said.

• Approved the purchase of a times-two filing system for the Barton County Attorney’s Office. With the addition of the attorney and support staff, the Attorney’s Office is in need of a filing system to hold traffic records for the fourth floor office in the courthouse. Casey Hubbard, office manager/investigator, located double-sided filing system with lateral shelves. The system, priced at $3,190, would be delivered and installed by File Safe.  

Hubbard said the office already uses several of these units and have had no problems with them. This one will be serviced out of Salina.

“This commission is really willing to support the County Attorney’s Office,” Commission Chairman Jennifer Schartz said. Responding to public complaints about the office, the county has also hired a new assistant county attorney, and approved an office expansion and remodeling.

• Approved a matching fund request of $1,500 for the Southwest Kansas Area Agency on Aging. The agency is requesting the funds from Barton County, which would be used as “seed dollars,” are an equivalent match to the $370,270 in services received by older residents and low income families from Barton County. The County has traditionally provided this match. 

Based in Dodge City, SWKAAA is a planning, coordinating and funding agency for services to anyone age 60 and older living in 28 counties in southwest Kansas, including Barton, Edwards, Hodgeman, Ness, Pawnee, Rush and Stafford.