County votes for early pay-off of general obligation bonds

ORIGINALLY WRITTEN JERRY ENGLER
The Marion County Commission Monday authorized a letter of notification to the Kansas Treasurer’s Office and passed a resolution, both for early pay-off of general obligation bonds that were authorized for hard-surface road improvements.

Commission Chairman Howard Collett said the funds being used to pay off the bonds were in trust for road building only, and earning only 1.5 percent interest in banks.

The commissioners weren’t free to use the money for other budget concerns, but they could use them for early pay-off that will save the county interest expense.

A principal amount of $1.92 million is outstanding on the bonds. According to the resolution, the newly planned redemption amounts to $1.060 million that will pay off bonds due to mature in 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010.

Commissioner Leroy Wetta estimated the interest saved just for the first year will be about $53,000.

David Brazil, sanitarian and administrator of health, zoning and the transfer station, gave commissioners copies of final changes to the county zoning plan, and said a public hearing about the plan will be Aug. 28 in the courthouse commission room.

Brazil said he is sending a letter to commercial waste haulers informing them of their tonnage use of the transfer station for the year and their outstanding fee balances.

JoAnn Knak, emergency medical services director, reported that emergency medical technicians treated only one person during the demolition derby last week at the Marion County Fair compared to 12 persons during the same event a year ago, when heat exhaustion was a chief factor.

They also treated one person injured by a bucking horse during the rodeo, and cared for two children who received minor scrapes during the mutton busting.

Knak said 69 ambulance calls were made in July-34 from Hillsboro, 18 from Marion, eight from Peabody and nine from Tampa.

The calls included 18 transfers, three cardiac, 20 medical emergency, six standby, one vehicle accident, four home accidents or falls, nine transports and two rescue truck.

Twelve first-responder calls were made-two from Goessel, six from Lincolnville, one from Durham and three from Burns.

Dale Snelling, park director at Marion County Lake, showed commissioners a rough drawing of what a second engineering report recommends for reducing potential risk of flood damage in the flood plain below the lake. The recommendation is in keeping with a state assessments that has the dam rated as a high-risk structure.

Snelling said the plan would raise the road at the south end of the dam by 18 inches and at the north end by 10 inches.

He said this could be accomplished with a buildup of millings over the existing road that would then be sealed. Greater expense would be incurred by digging up the existing surface, refilling with dirt, and than hard-surfacing it.

Tentative plans would also include construction of a 10- to 20-inch berm terrace below the dam that would tie into the existing hillside, Snelling said.

The commissioners approved crossings over county roads in a Peabody sewer line extension project summarized by Mayor Randy Dallke.

Dallke said construction would begin on the sewer addition with a new pump station next spring. The new line would run from the treatment plant at the southeast corner of town, extend north on the road to the cemetery, and cross U.S. Highway 50, thus opening the east side of Peabody for sewer hookups.

County roads involved would be Old Mill and Pawnee. Wetta suggested a cooperative effort to get county road ditches cleared of excess silt at the same time.

Gerald Kelsey, road and bridge director, reported the first mile of reconstruction with drains added has been done on the Tampa Road, and that the project should be done in the first half of September.

The commissioners met in executive session three times to discuss personnel-the first time with Knak, then Faye Makovec, register of deeds, and again with Bill Smithart, noxious weed director.

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