June 29


JUNE 29, 2021

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

Julie Cole and Adam Comeau, Rooks County EMT Administrators; and Courtney Flower, Stockton City Manager, were present to discuss the ambulance budget and staffing issues.  Comeau reported they finally had enough people (12) to hold an EMT class, but five had dropped out immediately and two later due to not being able to commit to the hours.  They requested a dramatic increase in the budget (from $3,000 per month to $15,000 per month) to help with staffing and maybe hire more full-time EMT’s.  Comeau presented a breakdown of 911 calls per surrounding counties with data of population, transfers, total runs, full time/part time EMT’s, volunteers, charges and expenses.  After some discussion, Ruder made a motion to go into executive session to discuss non-elected personnel between 9:22 and 9:32 am.  Berland seconded the motion, and Balthazor agreed.  Those present for the executive session were the Commissioners:  John Ruder, Greg Balthazor, and Tim Berland; Julie Cole and Adam Comeau, EMT Administrators; and Courtney Flower, Stockton City Manager.  Upon returning to regular session, there was no further discussion.

Rich Bouchey, Road & Bridge Supervisor, presented a check from Steve Hageman in the amount of $1,764.00 for the Landfill Farm Lease Agreement.  Ruder made a motion to sign the check for deposit.  Balthazor seconded the motion, and Berland agreed.

Bouchey presented the fuel bids dated June 28, 2021 with Farmers Union receiving the low bid.

                Midland Marketing         Diesel    15,457.20

                Farmers Union               Diesel    15,378.00

                Bosselman                     Diesel    15,471.00

Bouchey presented an agreement between Rooks County and Penco Engineering, PA to engage Penco Engineering for the preparation of plans for the Off-System Bridge #20 located 11.1 miles north and 6 miles east of Damar, KS.  Penco Engineering will receive a fee of $15,000 which amount shall be complete and sufficient compensation for services rendered in connection with the work.  (40% upon completion of Preliminary Plans, 40% upon completion of the Final Plans, and 20% upon Bid Letting.)  Ruder made a motion to sign the agreement.  Berland seconded the motion, and Balthazor agreed. 

A call had been received from Bob Parker asking when the County would be able to get the tubes by his residence (T Road and 19/20 Roads) fixed from the flooding.  Bouchey had planned to either make a temporary fix with tubes on hand or put in two big culverts, which are very expensive at this time.  It was decided to put in a temporary fix with 4’ culverts. 

Bouchey had a request from an employee at Midland Marketing wanting the department to blade a street in Zurich City that runs to the elevator. 

Ruder had received a call about 14 Road/T Road needing shale. 

Bouchey discussed equipment maintenance – mainly mowers.

Lori Eichman, Rooks County Health Department Administrator, mentioned she had received a grant to help with the costs of immunizing people.  This is for all vaccines, not just COVID vaccines.  The grant is for $173,000 to be used over a period of three years.  Eichman plans to use the funds for nurse time and purchasing an online enrollment for vaccines at schools. 

Eichman had received a response from Clint Womeldorff with Mid Continental Restoration Inc., from Fort Scott, KS, in the amount of $26,285 to repair the stucco and outside of the Health Department Building.  The Commissioners had a few questions, and Eichman will talk with Mr. Womeldorff and get back to the Commissioners before proceeding. 

The Commissioners reviewed the minutes of June 22nd.  Ruder made a motion to approve the June 22nd minutes as presented.  Berland seconded the motion, and Balthazor agreed.  After the minutes were printed, Balthazor made a motion to sign the minutes of June 22nd and the minutes of June 15th.  Ruder seconded this motion, and Berland agreed. 

A notice had been received from the Secretary of the Interior, Washington DC, that a payment had been issued under the Payments In Lieu of Taxes (PILT) program.  The PILT program compensates eligible local jurisdictions for Federal Lands administered by agencies within the Department and on behalf of the U.S. Forest Service and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.  Local governments may use the PILT payments for any governmental purpose, including emergency response, public schools, and roads.  Rooks County received a PILOT payment of $26,610. 

A letter of support was requested from the Rooks County Health Center to help them in their cause for a grant for a proposed bus barn project to house the County transportation buses.  The letter was signed by John Ruder as Chairman of the Board. 

Mike Klein, Noxious Weed Director, requested carrying over his compensation time to use in July for harvesting time.  Ruder made a motion to approve the request.  Berland seconded the motion, and Balthazor agreed. 

Butch Post, Emergency Management, said that the County needs to have a Title VI policy (discrimination policy) in order for Post to receive EMPG monies from KDEM.  Post will take the policy to the County Attorney for review.  The policy will need to be in place for the Emergency Management Department and most likely in the County policy as well. 

Post had been notified the State has denied funding for Rooks County for the flooding that occurred.  Rooks County was under their mandated threshold.

The SBA (Small Business Association) has loans available for businesses and individuals affected by the flooding.  Post has given the information to Roger Hrabe, Economic Development Director; and the information will be posted on the County website and Facebook pages.  These loans through KDEM and FEMA would benefit residents that lost cattle and/or equipment. 

Post said he had visited with another county, and it does not seem like the needed radios will be an allowable expense for the ARPA funding. 

The Sheriff’s Office did not receive a grant they had applied for – for a drone. The Sheriff and Emergency Management will split the cost of the drone.  A couple of deputies and the Emergency Management Director will be taking some drone flying classes. 

Post presented a map of counties that have let their emergency declarations expire or rescinded.  Rooks County does not need to rescind theirs yet, but plans to keep it in place to help with purchasing PPE and any Tort Liability issues.  The emergency declaration will be revisited in late July. 

Balthazor made a motion to review, approve and sign the end of the month vouchers and monthly payroll.  Ruder seconded the motion, and Berland agreed.

                June 30, 2021 (weekly)

                                                                VOUCHER           EMPLE BEN         GROSS PAY         TOTAL

County General                                 104,242.21           40,320.26             144,132.53           288,695.00

Road & Bridge                                   1,829.47                                               74,220.86             76,050.33

Noxious Weed                                       42.54                                                  3,487.06               3,529.60

Health Department                           21,103.78               4,512.45                26,442.76              52,058.99

Sanitation                                          489.08                                                    8,523.25               9,012.33

Rooks County Golf Course                3.99                                                        1,962.36               1,966.35

Economic Develop EX TR                 1,909.15                    805.42                   4,550.00               7,264.57

                GRAND TOTAL                   129,620.22           45,638.13             263,318.82           438,577.17


                June 30, 2021 (monthly)

                                                                VOUCHER           EMPLE BEN         GROSS PAY         TOTAL

County General                                188,732.98           40,320.26             144,132.53           373,185.77

Road & Bridge                                   57,026.62                                             74,220.86           131,247.48

Noxious Weed                                  15,452.59                                             3,487.06               18,939.65

Sheriff Equipment Reserve               109.25                                                                                   109.25

Health Department                             31,091.94             4,512.45               26,442.76             62,047.15

Custodian Equipment Reserve         792.95                                                                                   792.95

Sanitation                                          3,292.27                                               8,523.25               11,815.52

Rooks County Golf Course                3,029.99                                               1,962.36               4,992.35

Economic Develop EX TR                  2,070.41               805.42                   4,550.00               7,425.83

Parks & Recreation                          3,059.23                                                                             3,059.23

Central KS Library                           31,008.26                                                                           31,008.26

                GRAND TOTAL                   335,666.49           45,638.13             263,318.82           644,623.44

The Commissioners discussed the ambulance administrator’s request for more funding.  No decision was made. 

Ruder mentioned that the Healthcare Foundation had talked to him about the idea of building a new nursing facility on the hospital grounds.  The Foundation is interested and offering help.

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

Adopted this 6th day of July, 2021



John Ruder, Chairman                                                                                                            


Greg Balthazor, Member


Tim Berland, Member



Ruthmary Muir, Rooks County Clerk