Archive for Wednesday, May 9, 2007

County commission mulls putting court records online

May 9, 2007

Leavenworth County Commissioners have expressed their support of efforts to bring county court records online but also said they would need more time to research the matter.

Judge David King, chief judge of the 1st Judicial District, told commissioners Monday the state Supreme Court is requesting the ability to provide a means to search through legal documents in a more efficient manner.

The current process "requires our staff to pull hundreds of files and re-file them," King said, detailing what a record request entails.

If commissioners give their OK, King said Leavenworth County court documents would be on the Information Network of Kansas network. INK is a private contractor that pays the state for the right to have access to the data, he said.

Commissioner Clyde Graeber said he was concerned about distributing confidential information to a third party and wanted to further research what the cost to the county would be.

According to King, the funds generated by INK, which has historically handled Kansas' online governmental records, would further improvements in court technology. Additionally, he said, for each record search of county information, Leavenworth would receive 25 cents.

"That will be our way to recover our expense," King said.

Commissioners also met Monday with Linda Lobb, director of the county's Council on Aging, to discuss nutrition bids, transportation and technology issues.

Commissioners unanimously approved the renewal of a contract with Veterans Affairs, the agency that provides the food for meals on wheels and four congregate sites in Leavenworth County.

The six-month contract saw a 15-cent cost increase per meal.

"The VA is great to work with," Council on Aging representative Julie Angello said. "A couple things we would like to see would be a four-week cycle for the food and a little more input on the menu."

In a separate discussion, the commission talked about whether changes should be made in determining who is eligible to receive transportation to doctors visits outside the county from the council.

"We have a group of seniors that have absolutely no means for transportation," said Commission Chairman J.C. Tellefson, also noting a local, wheelchair-bound woman who was unable to get to the doctor's office. "We have got to facilitate them."

Commissioner Dean Oroke and Graeber said they were not opposed to considering applications for transportation on a case-by-case basis but were wary of opening the service up too generally.

Currently, the Council on Aging's policy is to provide transportation to seniors 55 and over.

"We're very willing to do whatever it is the board wants us to do," Lobb said.

In other business Monday, the commission:

  • Approved, 3-0, the purchase of two tandem axle dump trucks from Midway Sterling of Kansas City, Kan., for the county Public Works Department at a total cost of $206,798 after trade-in.

The commission also allowed the possibility of buying two beds for the trucks at a cost of nearly $24,000 apiece.

  • Approved, 3-0, $1,400 upgrades for a computer lab to be made available to seniors by the Council on Aging and a $4,549 purchase of a copy machine for the council.

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