The Linn County Commission on Monday accepted a bid by Clinch Realty of Pleasanton to sell the former Pleasanton Senior Center building for $76,000. (Journal file photo)
By Charlene Sims, Journal staff
MOUND CITY – The Linn County Commissioners met on Monday, July 10, with Commissioner Jim Johnson entering the meeting by conference call at 10:19. Johnson had sent a message to County Clerk David Lamb earlier in the meeting but the clerk did not see the message until this time.
During the meeting, the commission approved entering into a contract with Clinch Realty for selling the former Pleasanton senior citizens building at 201 E. 13th St. The contract was for six months at a proposed asking price of $76,000, and Clinch Realty will receive a 6% commission upon the sale of the property. No other bids were received.
The commission originally solicited bids for the property, but after receiving one bid for less than $70, the decision was made to contract with a real estate broker through a bidding process.
County Attorney Burton Harding updated the commissioners on the Tanglewood Lake situation, telling them that he believed he had filed the remaining charges or complaints and they will go before the court on around the first of August. He said that in order to distribute information more efficiently he was setting up a meeting with the lake owners association board so that they would have the most recent updates and could disseminate them to the residents.
The commission tentatively approved the county attorney’s 2024 budget request in the amount of about $378,400, which is an $11,900 increase related to the increase in payroll. Harding pointed out the increase in payroll was already approved and is in effect for a full-time assistant county attorney Justin Meeks and an increase in his salary. He said that the part-time payroll was the same as well as the contractual and commodities line items. The capital outlay is lower because the software that was needed has been purchased and paid for. Now the only thing that needs to be replaced is the copy machine at $8,500.
Harding briefly reported that a portion of the diversion fees go to the Linn County Children’s Coalition .
Commissioners also reviewed the monthly Linn County Park report. In June, the income for the park was about $32,400 and expenditures were $33,000 for a loss of about $600. Year-to-date income was was nearly $146,200 and expenditures were about $147,400 for a loss of around $1,200.
In a later phone conversation with the Linn County Park Manager Sheri Loveland, she said that the while the park is usually out of the red by June, several expenses were the reason June had less income.
Loveland said the following June expenses kept the park from gaining money:
• The purchase of a used mower from another county department
• Two months of utility bills came out of the June budget.
• An accidental double payment of the fuel bill.
• Three payroll periods were taken out of the June budget.
• Lost income from the caretaker’s house at the park. The county commissioners have decided not to spend over $100,000 to remodel it, and have been planning on demolishing it. Now, however, the county is putting out a request for proposal (RFP) for someone to move it off the property.
• The salary of the new full-time assistant at the park. Before this person was hired in January, Loveland was not able to take any days off because there was no one to run the park.
Commissioners also tentatively approved the Linn County Park 2024 budget in the amount of $404,000, an increase of $60,000.Linn County Park Manager Sheri Loveland explained to the commissioners that upcoming projects like the dock boat slips and the swimming area will increase the budget. The swimming area will need an engineering report for safety and erosion control.
Loveland said the park was going to purchase its own portable potties at the cost of about $4,300 including shipping. Two regular and one handicapped unit will be purchased. At present, two regular ones are rented from Gerken Rental at the cost of $330 per month. One of the toilets will be placed at the horse camp as it is seeing more usage since the horse trails have been cleaned up.
Other increases will come from increased utility costs, commodities and payroll.
In other business, the commissioners:
• Approved the sheriff’s department fee report for June of nearly $101,800. The fees received included inmate housing from the Kansas Department of Corrections, $405; inmate May housing from Wyandotte County of nearly $39,400; seizure money, more than $22,800; inmate May housing and transportation from the U.S. Marshal’s Service, nearly $37,300; and vehicle number (VIN) fees, $480.
• Hired Dennis Hardy as the south road and bridge shop foreman at the rate of $22.22 per hour and Donnie Snyder as the south shop assistant foreman at the rate of $20.39. Hardy replaces Harry Wisdom, who retired at the first of July.
• Approved Public Works Director Shaun West to sign contract with Burlington Northern for their right-of-way on the Hells Bend bridge project. The county agrees to pay a permit fee of $2,500 and an easement fee of $7,500.
• Learned from West that two of the new trackhoes had been delivered.
• Approved tentatively the 2024 Noxious Weed Department budget request of almost $188,900 an increase of about $13,300. Some of the increase will be payroll and in commodities for taking over the pest control in county buildings. West said the thought the county should see a decrease in other areas of the county budget because it would not be hiring a pest control company. He reported that approximately $23,000 to $25,000 has been spent out of the budgeted $35,000 cost-share program. The motion passed 2 to 0.
• Approved the 2024 budget request of $237,000, a decrease of more than $8,100 for Elderly program, which includes senior meals, transportation and building costs. West said that he had added to this budget for utilities because at present the county is paying for two buildings in Pleasanton
Public works assistant and transportation manager Joyce Hall explained to the commissioners that a minivan with a wheelchair lift that the county had applied for in the fall of 2021 should arrive this fall. When the van was ordered in 2021, the cost was $61,500, and now the actual cost is nearly $69,900. But the actual cost to the county will be about $7,000 and the state will pay for the rest of it. The county will soon have a new bus and van.