County to Purchase new GIS-ARCview reader

Mitchell County Appraiser Melinda Latham and County GIS Coordinator Clint Offutt met with the Mitchell County Commissioners Monday morning to discuss purchasing an ARCview Reader software for their departments. This will be a one-time purchase with an initial cost of $2,250 and a contract for a maintenance package at a cost of $700 a year.

This will make it possible for those in the Appraisers Office to be able to see the GIS maps and coordinates that Offutt does on his computer system. He will also be able to write or burn a GIS document for different county offices so they will all be able to access the maps and other information as they need it. At the present time they can't do this. Offutt said he would be able to download the package off of the Internet to set the system up. The commissioners unanimously approved this purchase. The two departments will split the cost of the software from money already available in their budgets.

Tami Eck, Register of Deeds, met with commissioners in a 15-minute executive session to discuss non-elected personnel. No decisions were made.

Ed Debesis, Emergency Medical Services, brought Brett Samuels, newly hired to fill the paramedic position that was open in his department, in to introduce him to the commissioners. Samuels will continue to live in Enterprise and will be working two 12-hour shifts a week. Commissioners approved this hire although Samuels lives outside the county since Paramedics are so hard to find and EMS has to have one on board for each ambulance run that is made.

Debesis also reported that he talked to Melton Motors the authorized Chevy dealer in Belleville that is working on the new ambulance Mitchell County that was delivered on February 27. It started overheating shortly after it was delivered has been out of commission for six months. No solution to its problem has been found. Meltons are putting a new motor in it and changing all the hoses. They found chunks of melted rubber hoses that they attribute to the rear heater in the vehicle overheating.

The Chevrolet Company themselves put everything in the rear part of the ambulance so it is their responsibility. Melton Motors will drive the ambulance to the factory of Osage Emergency Services in Wichita where it was purchased. Low speed is not an issue but if it is driven up over 85 miles an hour it still has issues that need to be taken care of. Debesis hasn't heard back from the company about the reimbursement he requested for the time of use this county has lost during the last six months.

Heather Hartman, Community Development Director, told the commissioners the newly formed Solomon Valley Community Foundation is three weeks into a campaign to raise $500,000 by the end of this year. This will be a vehicle for people to fund endowments and scholarships. She noted groups like the 4-H Clubs, schools, band groups, and etc. can apply for these funds as long as the placement is tasteful. They have a volunteer board already in place to head this group up. An outside organization that is already in place will do the investing for the foundation, she said.

Commissioner Tom Claussen reminded the other commissioners an Operation Specialist from Consolidated Foods would be here to meet with them on Monday, September 16, to look over several possible sites where the meals for the Law Enforcement Center prisoners could be prepared. He said that would probably be a long meeting by the time they also tour the LEC Building. He has invited Charlie Wright, Commander of the VFW to be present when the food specialist is here next Monday. Claussen said since he is a member of the VFW as well as a County Commissioner he will be abstaining from the vote.

Commissioner Jim Marshall said this issue of the expense of feeding the prisoners has generated a lot of comment from people in his area. They feel the cost of the meals is way out of line. He explained to them the regulations the State has imposed on the county in this situation. Marshall also commented on the restrictions the Corp. of Engineers is imposing on the county bridge the commissioner wanted to repair due to it being registered with the Kansas Historic Society.

Commissioner Claussen commented on the North Central Kansas meeting that will be held in Concordia later this month. State Senator Elaine Bowers, and State Representative Susan Concannon will be present to discuss Legislative information. The 2nd Amendment is the hot button right now, Claussen said.

Claussen also said there are five Monday's in September and asked if the other commissioners would like to waive the meeting on September 30, unless something comes up to make it necessary. The commissioners elected to do this. The County Department Head Meeting will be held on September 23.

Chairman Mike Cooper said he had someone ask him to bring a fully unmarked intersection a few miles outside the city limits on 8th Street to the commissioner's attention. They would like to have yield signs put up at that intersection. Cooper was going to discuss this with Public Works Director, Larry Emerson, at the meeting this morning but Emerson was unable to attend. He will pass the information on and try to get this corrected.

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