February 22


FEBRUARY 22, 2022

The Rooks County Board of Commissioners met with the following present:  John Ruder, Chairman; Greg Balthazor and Tim Berland, Members; and Ruthmary Muir, Rooks County Clerk.  Virgi Laska, with the Stockton Sentinel, was also present.  Ruder called the meeting to order, and asked all to rise and recite the Pledge of Allegiance.   The agenda was approved.

The Commissioners reviewed the minutes of Feb 15th.  Ruder made a motion to approve the minutes as presented.  Balthazor seconded the motion, and Berland agreed.  After the minutes were printed, Balthazor made a motion to sign the minutes of February 15th.  Ruder seconded the motion, and Berland agreed.

Heather Poore, Rooks County Appraiser, presented a 2022 Summary of Values by Property Type.  There are some major shifts happening with values.  Poore is hoping the mill levy will reflect the rising values.  One of the reasons values are higher, especially in residential properties, is because of new construction.

In weekly reports, Berland relayed a few complaints he had received about the roads – in particular the Logan Road.  Currently, with the dry conditions, the heavily trafficked roads are being badly beaten.  (2 Road, the Red Line Road, 10 Road, and the Codell Road).  The Commissioners discussed maybe trying to change the scope of how things are being done with the roads such as maintaining the roads instead of working on building new roads; maybe using a sheep’s foot, and definitely using a lot of water.  Berland had received a thank you from the resident that requested work done on a portion of the dirt road near his residence.   

Rich Bouchey, Road & Bridge Supervisor, was present.  A call was made to Kennis Becker, who had requested the call as part of the scheduled appointments, to discuss the Logan Road.  Becker mentioned that with the high traffic on the Logan Road, it is in terrible condition.  The Commissioners said they have intentions to work on the road, with or without moisture. 

Bouchey spoke about the frustrations and stress of trying to finish the Codell Road, and how the work was stalled due to break-downs.  When the Codell Road is finished, Bouchey plans to head to the Red Line Road, the 5-mile Road, and the Stamper Road. 

The Commissioners and Bouchey continued their discussion about road maintenance, how the reclaimer is set, and water issues.  A complaint about X Road was talked about as well. 

Bouchey reported the mower may be available by May.  There is no news about the repairs on the truck that is still in Hays at I-70 Truck Repair. 

Bouchey is still working with job applications for the mechanic position at the shop. 

Balthazor reported about the Economic Development meeting held the previous evening.  Hrabe mentioned he will be needing more judges for the YEC, as there are so many teams this year.  The YEC Competition will be held in Stockton on March 2nd.  A small Capital Access meeting was held with the four county banks.  They are expecting a gentleman to come in and help with new businesses and existing businesses.  The Rooks County Arts Council had met last week.  They plan to have a Hays artist do their first mural on the attorney’s business located on Highway 183/Highway 24 intersection in Stockton.  Roger Hrabe, Economic Development Director, is planning to attend the Boat/Sports Show in Omaha, NE this week.  Hrabe had presented a grant possibility for an event center to the Rooks County Golf Course Committee members. 

Ruder reported the Redbud Board Meeting has been postponed until March 3rd

Kelly Stewart had been an appointed member of the Rooks County Golf Course, and has moved to Hays.  The committee had recommended Rick Bice for a replacement.  Ruder made a motion to appoint Rick Bice to the Rooks County Golf Course Committee to replace Kelly Stewart.  Balthazor seconded the motion, and Berland agreed. 

The Commissioners had received a packet from KNRC with information concerning the US Fish & Wildlife Service’s proposed Lesser Prairie Chicken Habitat Conservation Plan, and how it would possibly impact the oil and gas industry.  The Rooks County Commissioners are on board with KNRC, but did not respond with any input concerning how the oil and gas HCP permit may impact the natural and human environments.

The Commissioners decided to table the Custodian’s new job description proposal for another week due to a time constraint. 

Berland made a motion to review, approve and sign the weekly vouchers as follows.  Ruder seconded the motion, and Balthazor agreed. 

                February 22, 2022

County General                                                 77393-77409                                       7,852.33

Road & Bridge                                                   77410-77438                                       71,170.80

Road & Bridge Special Hwy Imp                     77439                                                    15,100.00

Attorney Equipment Reserve                           77440                                                    2,272.50

Health Department                                            77441-77449                                       1,632.27

Sanitation                                                          77450-77457                                       3,571.78

Alcohol Program                                               77458-77459                                       800.00

                GRAND TOTAL                                                                                       102,399.69


With no further business to transact, Ruder made a motion to adjourn the meeting.  Balthazor seconded the motion, and Berland agreed.




John Ruder, Chairman                                                                    


Greg Balthazor, Member                                                              


Tim Berland, Member



Ruthmary Muir, Rooks County Clerk