Archive for Wednesday, July 23, 2008

County surveyor post to be kept in-house

July 23, 2008

It appears Leavenworth County won't use an outside contractor for its survey work after all.

County commissioners on Monday voted unanimously to advertise again for a full-time, in-house county surveyor.

The board considered input from Planning and Zoning and Public Works staffs, planning commissioners, the county register of deeds and a private surveyor before making the decision to replace former surveyor Dan Schmitz, who tendered his resignation earlier this month.

"The hardest part about this is to account for the intangibles," Public Works director Mike Spickelmier said in defense of keeping the surveyor an in-house position. " : My own thought is the intangibles more than outweigh the expenditures."

He added that, despite spending approximately $70,000 each year for on-call surveying services, having a full-time surveyor is helpful in construction staking, making bridge measurements and assisting members of the public.

Planning and Zoning director Chris Dunn said a county surveyor is a vital part of the "three-legged stool" that is the planning process, along with the Public Works and Planning and Zoning departments.

In other business Monday, the board:

¢ Reviewed quotes for health insurance that were recently received by the county's insurance broker, Leavenworth-based Reilly & Sons Insurance.

Proposed plans included dental coverage from Delta Dental Plans Association at $17.94 per month for an individual, full-time county employee (paid for by the county) and $65.18 per month for families.

Premiums for a Humana medical coverage plan - with vision care - would be $409.17 per month for individuals (paid for by the county) and $903.02 for families compared to $448 for individuals and $949.76 for families under a current plan with UnitedHealthcare.

County administrator Heather Morgan noted reduced co-pays for doctor visits and prescription drugs and decreased out-of-pocket expenses as added incentive for contracting with Humana, and, she said, "All major doctors in Leavenworth are covered."

¢ Unanimously approved a $26,481 bid from Kansas City, Kan.-based Fagan Company to replace an air compressor in the Leavenworth County Justice Center that failed.

¢ Accepted, 3-0, a $98,819 bid for a new sign truck for the Public Works Department from Kansas City Peterbilt of Kansas City, Kan.

¢ Raised concerns about the efficiency of Public Works' road crews since moving to a 10-hour-per-day, four-day workweek in May.

¢ Heard a quarterly report from county counselor-at-large Keyta Kelly.

Kelly also informed commissioners that Kansas Sampler Festival representatives would conduct an interview and site visit Tuesday, Aug. 18, in Leavenworth.

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