Monday, January 23, 2012

Riley County Commission January 23, 2012

Joan Strickler, observer

All Commissioners present, Alvan Johnson presiding.

There was informal discussion about the future of the current city/county sales tax levy. Apparently, the city is considering pursuing a city tax only, which would incorporate that section of Manhattan located in Pottawatomie County. The tax would cover only that part of the county located in Manhattan. The proposal would be placed on the August ballot. The city might offer 30% of the amount collected to the county if that tax is approved by voters. If not, the city and county could pursue asking for the existing tax levy to be renewed on the November ballot.

A concern was raised about the possibility that the city may want to regain control of transportation matters instead of continuing participation in intergovernmental planning. It was generally agreed that intergovernmental planning was wiser than having each entity do its own thing.

Meetings are being held to deal with disagreements between the county and Kansas State University. KSU has produced copies of laws showing they do not have to consult with the county on building plans. The county has submitted laws stating the county has jurisdiction on all zoning matters. Commissioners expressed general frustration at not being included in K-State’s discussions regarding matters such as NBAF. County resources will be affected such as fire control and emergency response operations.

Meetings are currently underway with law enforcement, emergency personnel, the fire department and Aggieville businesses regarding problems and complaints about Fake Patty’s Day celebrations.

Mary Jo Harbour, president of the Riley County Council on Aging, gave an update of services and activities. Mickey Chance-Reay will represent the county in the Silver Haired Legislature.

Greg McClure with County Extension said a Country Living Expo is planned for February 4, at the St. George Elementary School in St. George. The major topic will be laws that must be observed when living in the country, such as those pertaining to fences, leases, liability related to livestock, and wandering dogs as well as other requirements.

Progress is finally being made in resolving the county’s lawsuit against Deutsche Bank. The bank foreclosed on property thought to be in private hands but later found to belong to the county. Things have become more complicated since the bank sold the property to Atlantic Housing in California. That company is complaining that they never received the deed. It seems generally agreed among the attorneys that the lawsuit might be resolved through journal entries to the documents filed with the court.

Budget and Finance Officer Johnette Shepek reported the estimated 2011 ending cash balance in the general fund will amount to $4,431,466.

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