County passes ?11 budget with 1.127 mill increase

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The Marion County commissioners, following a budget hearing with no commentary on Monday morning, passed the 2011 county budget with a 1.127 mill-levy increase.

They advised Tonya Richards, county sanitarian, to give illegal dumping operations on U.S. Highway 56 and on 190th 30 days to continue cleanup?if they are making significant efforts?before turning them in to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment.

Commissioner Dan Holub told Road and Bridge Director Jim Herzet that a car passed his car, then down the road went into a skid trying to stop for the stop sign at Nighthawk and 190th.

Holub said there have been several accidents at the intersection, and he asked Herzet what could be done to increase awareness of the stop sign before a serious accident occurs.

Herzet said road and bridge could put up a larger stop sign to increase its visibility. Another suggestion was top install that rumble strips.

Justin Schrag of Citizens State Bank presented a $25,000 JOBS state grant check for development of a county entrepreneurship training center to encourage long-term small business development in the county.

Other community partners in the project will be the Marion County Economic Development Council, Butler Community College, the Kansas Small Business Development Center, WorkForce Area 1, Flint Hills Resource Conservation & Development, business owners and retired businessmen acting as mentors, and school teachers in the five area schools.

The commissioners approved Emergency Medical Services Director Steve Smith?s purchase of a Samsung copying, printing and fax machine from Dick?s Business Machines in Emporia.

The commissioners agreed to sign a letter of support to the KDHE and Environment asking that FHRC&D be given equal opportunity to bid on administration in the Cottonwood basin instead of automatically giving the responsibility to Kansas State University.

Teresa Huffman, county economic development director, and Peggy Blackman, coordinator for Watershed Restoration and Protection Strategy, said FHRC&D has more relationship with area landowners to do the job, and would have to provide the technical support on the project anyway.

They said if K-State got the job, it would give the institution more money, but not give the same resources to the area.

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