May 31


May 31, 2022

The Rooks County Commissioners met with the following present:  Chairman, John Ruder; and Members, Greg Balthazor and Tim Berland.  Laura Montgomery, Deputy County Clerk, was present to write the minutes.  Virgi Laska, with the Stockton Sentinel, was also present.  Ruder brought the meeting to order and asked all to rise and recite the Pledge of Allegiance.  The agenda was approved as presented.

Gary Knight, Sheriff, was in to present the Commissioners bids for INA using ARPA funds. Three requests for bids were sent out but INA was the only vendor to bid. The bid was for jail security, including cameras, camera computers, card readers, intercoms, etc. The Sheriff is currently with Accrue Controls out of Michigan and the contract expires at the end of the year. All of the equipment that is being replace is six years old.

Heather Poore, Appraiser, was next to present the Commissioners the valuation that was certified to the County Clerk.  Valuation for personal property is down 5.56%, oil valuation is up 59%, real estate is up 4%, over all the valuation for the county is up 14.7%.  In 2021, the assessed value was 70,68262, in 2022 the assessed value is 81,073,709. If you take the current value time last year mill levy it would increase the tax dollars by $655,173 for the county. These values don’t include any oil exemptions from BOTA or Midland Market that is also going to BOTA.  Ag land is staying steady and houses are up in value. Berland wanted to know if city value is it about 1/3 of the county wide value. Poore would get that information to him. Poore informed the commissioner that she is sharing the county vehicle with the Custodian. He is the changing the oil in exchange for the use.

Rich Bouchey, Road Supervisor, presented the farm lease rent check in the amount of $1,764.  Ruder made a motion to endorse the check, Balthazor second the motion and Berland agreed. Also presented to the commissioners was a check from Pfeifer Recycling for steel from the bridge. Bouchey presented the landfill check in the amount of $10,087.70 for the month of April. Ruder made a motion endorsing the checks.  Balthazor second the motion and Berland agreed.

The Commissioners accepted the fuel bid from Farmers Union in the amount of $31,143.75 and the April monthly fee reports for Road and Sanitation.

Bouchey had a map showing where the bridge on Bow Creek was taken out and the detour.  There are 3 people who are needing to detour around where the bridge was taken out and it is approx. 3 miles more. There is a farmer wanting a culvert installed so he doesn’t have to make the extra mileage to haul hay. The new route is a good road but there is a sharp curve in the road. After some discussion, it was decided that it wasn’t possible to meet his request to put in a culvert.  Bouchey would make some improvements to the road to make it easier for him to haul the hay trailer.

Balthazor said 30 Rd needs some work and maybe some rock laid down. 26 Rd is very good shape.

Berland had complaints about Dunlap not working and the conditions of his roads.

The Commissioners opened bids at 10:00 for the Courthouse Restoration. Roger Hrabe setup zoom so Jacob Stockton, Stockton Restoration, could be present. The first bid open was Midcontinent Restoration with a bid of $92,726. Stockton Restoration had a bid of $92,500.

Ruder made a motion to accept the low bid of $92,500 from Stockton Restoration.  Balthazor second the motion and Berland agreed. Jacob Stockton said he would start in 45 to 60 days and will be done sometime this fall. Roger Hrabe will need a contract that includes performance bond and is acceptable to the State Historical Society.

Bouchey was back to finish with the commissioners. Ruder asked about the road equipment. Bouchey said they are mostly just waiting on parts. The head gaskets are out on the mac truck. They are going to replace two heads on the truck. Ruder asked if the water truck going, Bouchey replied, “No” and it’s going to Hays this week. The dozier was down for several days, while they were waiting on a hydraulic line. The reclaimer is waiting for a turbo. Gail found an aftermarket and hopefully it will show up today. Ruder asked if there was any news on the Zurich blacktop. Bouchey, said he is still waiting on notice to proceed.

Don Farr is going to move a house in and he wants help removing a couple of trees.

Bouchey and commissioners discussed equipment and repairs. Also discussed were the roads being worked. Bouchey is hoping to be asphalting next week out by Palco.

Ruder made a motion to approve the May 24th minutes as presented. Balthazor second the motion and Berland agreed.

Kim Northup, Treasurer, was in to have the Commissioners sign new bank signature cards for Solutions North Bank. Next week she will need to have them sign new cards for Astra Bank and First State Bank.

Northup sent a request to other County Treasurers as to whom they would recommend do a county delinquent tax sale. Klendra Austerman, Atty at Law, came highly recommended. She doesn’t charge the county but does charge the purchaser a fee. Northup will inquire and get information so a tax sale can be done. 

Ruder made motion to approve and sign small funds vouchers, Balthazor second the motion and Berland agreed.  Ruder made a motion to sign the new bank signature cards for Solutions North Bank as required. Berland second the motion and Balthazor agreed.

Berland’s weekly report:  NWKS P & D had a zoom meeting but he was late signing in. He had already spoken with Bouchey about the road complaints.

Balthazor’ s weekly report: He had also already spoken with Bouchey about what is needed on the roads. He has a Eco Devo meeting on Monday. The rain was welcome relief. He drove the roads in his area and some of the roads had been worked but a bunch were not worked.

All of the commissioners had received complaints about graders not working. They discussed Road & Bridge working hours and road conditions.  

Ruder attended a Red Bud Board meeting. They currently have 30 in long term care and 10 in assistance living. Jodie Ostmeyer has completed her training. She hasn’t scheduled her test but the expectation is sometime soon. Red Bud still hasn’t hired new maintenance person but they did hire a new assistance office manager.

Berland made a motion to sign last week’s minutes.  Ruder second the motion and Balthazor agreed.

Ruder said that June 1st will be Ruthmary Muir’s last day. She is retiring as County Clerk. She will be very much missed. She was very good at her job and an asset to the County.

Ruder made a motion to review and sign vouchers and approve May payroll. Berland second the motion and Balthazor agreed.

MAY 31, 2022 (WEEKLY)

FUND                          AP WARRANTS                 EMPLE BEN                         GROSS PAY         TOTAL

General                   135,211.57                           40,927.18                             155,344.41           311,483.16

Road & Bridge      883.97                                                                                   79,480.49             77,364.46

Noxious Weed                                                                                                      7,309.19               7,309.19

Road Special Equip   35,489.00                                                                                                      35,489.00

Health Dept                                                           4,041.79                               24,2458.69           28,500.48

Sanitation                  5,156.79                                                                         8795.39                 13,952.18

Golf Course               18.47                                                                                  1,248.96               1,267.43

RCED                        2,794.89                               783.86                                   4,686.50               8,265.25

     GRAND TOTAL  179,554.69                         45,752.83                             278,323.63           503,631.15


MAY 31, 2022 (MONTHLY)

General                   224,774.50                           40,927.18                             155,344.41           421,046.09

Road & Bridge        153,211.69                                                                        76,480.49             229,692.18

Noxious Weed        19,789.82                                                                           7,309.19               27,099.01

Road Special Equip  35,489.00                                                                                                      35,489.00

Sheriff Equip             11,135.00                                                                                                       11,135.00

Health Depart             8,916.39                            4,041.79                               24,458.69             37,416.87

Sanitation                  16,437.80                                                                          8,795.39             25,233.19

Golf Course                 1,050.47                                                                          1,248.96               2,299.43

RCED                          2,945.90                             783.86                                   4,686.50               8,416.26

DARE Fund                   840.61                                                                                                            840.61

     GRAND TOTAL    474,591.18                       45,752.83                             278,323.63           798,667.64

Gary Knight, who is on the golf course committee, phoned, he had check with Carlotta, with the Loyd Group, and the funds to purchase a new mower for the golf course does qualify for ARPA funds. Ruder made a motion to use $4,000 from Parks & Rec Fund, and $16,000 from ARPA funds for the purchase of a Hustler 104 Mower for the golf course. There is also a grant for $4,000 to help with the cost. The balance of the $26,000 for the mower will be paid by the Men’s Golf Association. Berland second the motion and Balthazor agreed.

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




John Ruder, Chairman


Greg Balthazor, Member


Tim Berland, Member



Laura Montgomery, Rooks County Clerk