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  • Writer's pictureCharlene Sims, Journal staff

Senior meal centers to be on next week's commission agenda

Updated: Dec 15, 2022

MOUND CITY – Linn County Commissioner Rick James said on Monday, Dec. 5, that commissioners need to have a serious discussion about the senior meal sites at next week’s meeting.

Commissioners have for several months been discussing whether to repair the current Pleasanton Senior Center or move the program to another location. One of those locations has been the Pleasanton Community Center.

After receiving a report from Linn County Economic Development Director Jessica Hightower about the congregate meal sites earlier on Monday, James said that with information she presented and other information from the Linn County Journal, commissioners needed to take up the matter when all three commissioners were present. Commissioner Danny McCullough did not attend Monday’s session.

James said that the article he had seen said that Pleasanton still wanted $1,500 per month from the county for letting them have the senior citizen’s site at the Pleasanton Community Center.

James said Linn County already spends $30,000 year for the meals at all the senior centers, and that the $1,500 monthly on top of that for the nine to 10 people to eat at the Pleasanton site was too much for the county.

He remembered that the $1,500 that was offered for the rooms originally was so that a kitchen for preparation of meals for all the county meal sites could be put in the Pleasanton Community Center.

At that time, Linn County was the only county of the seven counties in the East Central Kansas Area Agency on Aging (ECKAAA) area that prepared its own meals. Meals are now prepared in Ottawa and brought to Linn County.

“We don’t need that kitchen anymore,” said James.

He said that La Cygne had closed down its kitchen because there was only one person coming to eat there. Fortunately, the La Cygne Library is offering meals and activities for seniors one or two times per week, he added.

James said that $1,500 a month for 20 days was $75 a day for 10 people to eat at Pleasanton.

“Hopefully, we can work this out,” said James.

In other business, the commissioners:

• Heard the Linn County Park report for November. The income was more than $20,200 and the expenditures were about $14,500 for an operating profit of nearly $5,800. The year-to-date operating profit is about $46,000, however, salaries are paid out of the county’s general fund and not from park fee receipts.

• Reappointed John Morse to the Tri-Ko board for a three-year term. Morse has been on the board since 2011. Before voting, Johnson asked if this was one of the boards that would have a term limit. James said it was not a county board, and not subject to term limits.

• Learned from Economic Development Director Jessica Hightower that the county’s American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) money could be used for park repairs, maintenance and improvements.

• Learned from Hightower that there is going to be a county officials meeting on Dec. 20 at 7 p.m. at Bunker Hill Community Center. Linn County Zoning Administrator Darin Wilson will talk about the updating of the Linn County Zoning Regulations.

• Approved a 1–inch water line burial permit requested by Anderson County Rural Water District No. 1 on1475 Road near the intersection of County Highway 1072. Johnson asked if there was a way that county grader operators could be notified of the burial permits. He said that there was a road recently that had a line burial and after the rain the road had really settled at that spot. The grader operator said if had been aware of the burial he could have taken some preventative measures.

• Learned from Public Works Director Shaun West that there was going to be a house moved in the county, but his understanding was that it did not require permission from the commissioners. West said that he had checked into the credentials of the company and was confident about the procedure. James said that while the move did not need permission of the commissioners, West could get with commissioners separately after the meeting about what is being moved where.

• Learned from West that the cost-benefit analysis for the landfill should be completed the week of Dec. 12.

• Heard that the noxious weed staff was testing for pesticide licensing this week.

• Hired Michael Shapel as the maintenance supervisor for the county at the rate of $16.82 per hour. Shapel will be transferring from the Road and Bridge department.

• Hired Nicholas Mitchell as an Operator I at the rate of $14.89 per hour.

• Terminated the employment of Clyde Shafer at the north shop as an at-will employee effective Monday, Dec. 5.

• Lamb reminded the commissioners that the Linn County Christmas Lunch and Award banquet for county employees will be this Friday from noon to 2 p.m. at the Christian Church at Fifth and Spruce streets in Mound City.

Lamb said that Katie Parscale is working on table decorations and desserts for the banquet. He said that Parscale had all the gifts ready for the service awards but could probably use some help with getting the tables ready that day.

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