BOCC considers public comments sessions
Board of County Commissioners chairman J.C. Tollefson wants to pursue the possibility of public comments sessions in southern Leavenworth County.
Tollefson proposed the public comment sessions be held in the southern part of the county, six times each in Tonganoxie and Basehor, and another 12 at the courthouse during the course of the year. The session would take place in the evenings, as regular commission meetings are during the day, when many residents cannot attend.
Graeber warned of potential statute violations. The commission would fulfill statutes requiring that it meet two times per week at an established location, which is at the courthouse. But holding additional meetings elsewhere — where no business could be conducted — could go against an attorney general’s opinion about outside meetings, Graeber said.
Tollefson requested that staff report back with its thoughts on the subject by next Thursday.
senior center options
The commission will look at options for the future of the Council on Aging. It currently is at the Heritage Center, but Tollefson had spoken with a county resident who said there was strong support to move the senior center to the former infirmary.
The commission plans to accept requests for proposals for all interested parties, including the Heritage Center, as the commission is interested in renegotiating its lease for Jan. 1, 2011.
Graeber said the commission needed to look at what effects a move away from the Heritage Center would have on the center.
Tollefson said he thought the Heritage Center had been a good landlord. He also said the commission needed to look at what’s best for the county.
Currently the county pays $42,000 in rent plus utilities to lease space at the center. Commissioners noted parking has been an issue at the center.
In other business, the commission:
• Heard concerns from Louis Klemp, a former commissioner, regarding revitalization plans in Basehor, specifically in Falcon Lakes.
“The amount of money we gave up for the county is nothing,” commissioner John Flower said.
• Also heard from Klemp about who was taking the official minutes for the county, as both Wanda Doty, executive secretary for the BOCC and county deputy clerk Janice Dickson were taking minutes. Doty was taking the official minutes for the county, while Dickson was taking minutes for County Clerk Janet Klasinski. By statute, the county clerk also is required to have a representative take note, Tollefson said.
• Met in executive session for 10 minutes to discuss legal issues. County administrator Heather Morgan and county counselor David VanParys also attended the meetings.
• Unanimously accepted a low bid of $14,426 from Danny Zeck Ford for a vehicle for the department of juvenile services. It was the lone bid.
• Unanimously approved the minutes of Thursday’s meeting with changes.
• Unanimously approved a request from Bob Doyle, director of juvenile services, for a hiring freeze exemption for three positions, as two people are on leave through the Family Medical Leave Act and another is for a previous position.
“We need to backfill when they are gone,” Morgan said. “This allows us to maintain staffing patterns.”
Morgan also said applicants understood the positions were temporary until the people on FMLA returned to work.