County news

Parking east of the Dickinson County Courthouse is at a premium due to construction on the new jail addition.

Dickinson County Administrator Brad Homman told commissioners Thursday he made some adjustments in the parking area north of the county attorney’s office at 201 E. First.

He said staff with the county attorney’s (CA) office and contractors had been parking north of the office and the area had become congested and a “little bit dangerous.” In response, Homman said he asked contractors to park in one area while staff were to park in another.

As for the jail addition, all underground conduit and plumbing for the administrative portion — now under construction — has been completed. Plans were to start pouring the floor this past Thursday morning, but rain delayed that.

Also, foundation walls for the booking area, sally port  (controlled entry) and garage were installed.

“We had a walk through on Monday (June 29). The last mezzanine and stairway for one of the pods was being installed then. Masons are finishing up the last wall. It’s starting to look like a jail,” Homman said.

 

Pipe refurbishing, storage business

The commission approved a conditional use permit for DKM Enterprises at 1118 3400 Avenue for a pipe refurbishing and storage business. The business involves taking pipe from various pipe replacement projects across Kansas, Nebraska and Iowa and preparing it for resale. 

“The pipe will be trucked in and cleaned off with water. No chemicals are used,” said Dickinson County Planning and Zoning Administrator Tim Hamilton. “The pipes will be cleaned off, straightened and stored for wholesale sale on the property.”

The county’s planning commission already approved the conditional use permit with a number of requirements, including verifying the condition of the septic system with Dickinson County Environmental Services, entering into a road maintenance agreement for 3400 Avenue with the county road department, taking steps to control water runoff and other concerns.

The permit also requires that any noise, dust or smoke-producing process be performed in an accessory building.

Commissioners welcomed the new business owners to the county.

 

Tax sale July 13 

The annual delinquent tax sale has been scheduled for 10 a.m. Monday, July 13 at the courthouse, said County Counselor Doug Thompson. This is the third time the sale has been scheduled after being postponed twice due to the COVID-19 shutdown. 

Thompson also said he had filed a lawsuit on behalf of the county for iron that was never paid for and said the county received judgment on another lawsuit that involves a blighted property that had not been cleaned up.

“There’s a mobile home out there on the property that’s accruing a daily fee,” Thompson said. 

 

Other

• After reading about concerns in the Reflector-Chronicle regarding the intersection at Jeep Road and Old 40 Highway where trees had created a “line of sight issue,” the owner of the property contacted Homman and volunteered to cut back the trees.

“He didn’t want any hazards,” Homman said. “We very much appreciate him calling in.”

• The commission approved a resolution allowing the county to participate in the coronavirus relief fund.

The fund consists of money from the federal government distributed to the states and then to the counties to be used for COVID-19 relief. Kansas received $1.25 billion in funding. Of that, Dickinson County is expected to receive approximately $3.6 million later this month, Homman said. 

Money can be used for coronavirus-related expenses dating from March 1 to Dec. 31, 2020.

“There will be three rounds of funding. This is the first — intended for municipalities, government entities and school districts,” Homman said.

One area where the county plans to use mitigation funds is for expenses related to the tax sale. Because the sale was postponed twice, the county has incurred “some pretty substantial expenses” due to the postponements from Thompson’s office, the cost of legal publications and other items.

“We’re going to take that out of the coronavirus funding as well,” Homman said. “We think that’s a legitimate expense to be reimbursed on.”

• The commission approved the 2021 solid waste management plan with no change from the previous year.

• The commission approved a $17 check to be paid to Jefferson County. The check covers expenses from the county’s attorney office to obtain certified court records from authorities in Jefferson County for a local court case.

Contact Kathy Hageman at reporter@abilene-rc.com.

Contact Tim Horan at editor@abilene-rc.com.

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