August 22, 2011
Joan Strickler, observer
All Commissioners present, McCulloh presiding.
Commissioners agreed to sign a contract with the McGrath Consulting Group, Inc., to conduct a classification and compensation study for the Public Health Department. McGrath previously provided a study of the County and City positions.
County Clerk Rich Vargo assisted in a work session regarding redistricting of the Commission. Three options were considered. The Commissioners indicated a preference for option number 2 and a public hearing will be held in September prior to any finalization of a redistricting plan.
Tim Hegarty gave a Riley County Police Department update. He warns students in particular to lock their cars and keep valuables out of sight. He noted students are having some problems getting used to the roundabout on Bluemont. He warned that most burglaries occur during the day and urged people to report suspicious movement of items out of houses and apartments.
The new IRIS (Immediate Response Information System) is now in place and allows people to receive alerts on the communication devices they choose. Included in the choices are cell phones, work phones, email, text as well as the NOAA All-hazards Radio. Recently added is the option to receive notification of Wildcat Creek Flood warnings. To receive such warnings you may email firstname.lastname@example.org and make the request. It will be necessary first to register for IRIS emergency notifications by going to www.rileycountyks.gov.
Emergency Management Director Pat Collins reported on some requests coming out of a study group on tenant safety issues. He noted some rental properties are in very good shape but some are not. Tenants should check for smoke alarms, preferably located in each room and centrally connected. He said tenants are responsible for replacing batteries in alarms when needed. He recommended carbon monoxide detectors and fire extinguishers both be present. It was noted there are people on Post who can help Fort Riley people who are experiencing rental problems, and help is available to students through K-State.
County Counselor Clancy Holeman provided a draft of a resolution for Commissioners to sign in support of maintaining Riley County in the 2nd Congressional District.
A lengthy discussion followed regarding the need to have a building code established for rural areas of the County. While most new construction appears to meet acceptable standards some people are living in old box cars or trailers lined up to form one residence. Commissioner McCulloh strongly supported the need for such a building code. Commissioners Johnson and Lewis felt such a code would be unnecessarily costly and not needed at this time.
Julie Govert Walter with the North Central-Flint Hills Area Agency on Aging updated the Commissioners on the year’s accomplishments. A total of 6,054 persons age 60 and above received services in the County. Services provide information and assistance with a variety of programs including the Medicare Part D Prescription Drug program, energy assistance and housing. Other services make it possible for persons to remain in their own homes instead of nursing facilities.