Three things from county commission

Chad Frey
The Kansan
Harvey County

Three things from the July 13 county commission

1. Approved a budget

The county commission approved a budget for publication which will not require a mill levy increase. 

The budget calls for the county to collect about $13 million in taxes next year, possible due to increased evaluations in the county. 

2. Approved the replacement of a bridge

The county was backed into a rough spot as it moved froward with a project to replaced a bidge on SE 36th. 

One week ago the county received bids for the project — and all the bids received were higher than the engineering estimates. That led to the county placing the project on hold for one week as options were evaluated. 

If the county would have chosen to shelve the proejct, the county would not have been able to access about $150,000 in Kansas Department of Transportation funds approved for the project as part of a cost share program. 

"I do not see anything to be gained by postponing this project," said Jim Meier, director of the road and bridge department. "If we do not do this project, I see that we can lose two things — one is the [state] funding opportunity and the other is even higher prices at a later date." 

he original intent to was to use fund set aside from highway funding. The county has about $930,000 in the find, with $40,0000 set aside for the bridge project specifically. 

"The reality is that this bridge needs to be replaced and we can make use of the state funding to help, or we can forgo that, do the bridge later and pay the whole cost ourselves," said Anthony Swartzendruber, county adminstrator.  

The county approved a bid of $351,296  and will receive $150,000 in state funds. 

3. Approved moving forward with a grant application

The county commission gave its blessing to the KDHE Immunization Action Plan Supplemental 4 Vaccine Equity Grant .

The Department of Health and Environment Immunization Program is offering COVID-19 related funds to local health departments for vaccine equity directed-events and programs  with support of the program through June 30, 2024.

If approved, the county will be awarded  $160,000 in grant funds. There is no match required for these funds.