The Butler County Board of Commissioners nominated a new chairman and vice chairman at the meeting on Tuesday, Jan. 9. County commissioner Dan Woydziak agreed to be the chair, relieving commissioner Jeff Masterson of his two-year term as chair, and Marc Murphy took over Ed Myers' former spot as vice chair – which Myers held for two years as well. These selections are done annually.
Later in the meeting, Chief Information Officer Scott Stoskopf recommended two additional agreements with Sirius Computer Solutions for the Wi-Fi capital improvement plan (CIP) project.
In November, the county commission signed agreements that covered the new Wi-Fi access points and network access control. The signed documents accepted the proposal and the statement of work, which clarify what is expected for the project. At that time, the board of county commissioners was also given a cost projection sheet that included the possibility of the vendor installing any extra data cable that might be required. The vendor would now like authority to run more cabling. The total cost of the project will not change since this option was in the original cost projections.
The board of commissioners authorized the chair to sign the additional proposal and statement of work for the data cabling portion of the Wi-Fi CIP project.
The board discussed a report of viewers with Public Works Director and County Engineer Darryl Lutz for the proposed vacation of one mile of NW Hunter Road in Clifford Township. On Dec. 12, 2017, The county received and accepted a petition requesting the vacation. The segment proposed to be vacated begins at NW 180th Street and then goes south for one mile to NW 170th Street. The existing road right-of-way is not maintained, and the road is used by vandals and hunters.
Commissioners Myers, Mike Wheeler and Murphy were appointed as viewers and met on the road at 8 a.m. on Tuesday before the county commission meeting to view the road and receive comments from people concerned with the vacation. The viewers were to determine if the road or road right-of-way is of public utility or if vacation of the road will cause an inconvenience to the public.
"The only condition that I heard was a request for some sort of delineation of the property line, and it suggested a single strand of wire be stretched for the north half mile. And that was essentially all that I heard. The county will go out and mark the government corner to establish property line, but I think it's for the purpose of depicting where the actual property line is between the two neighbors. And we would set intermittent markers so if they want to build a fence, they can," Lutz said.
If the road is vacated, the suggested single-wire fence would run down the middle of existing road right-of-way to distinguish property lines between neighbors for farming purposes. The county would not be responsible for putting up the fence. The board of commissioners decided that they didn't want to take official action to vacate the road until the wire fence is in place; they tabled action on the report of viewers for two weeks, during which time Lutz will seek a letter of agreement from the township or neighbors for putting up the fence.
In other items of business, the board talked about the inmate count at the Butler County Jail – which is at 169. This number is down from when the jail housed 174 inmates and made about $6,000 in daily revenue a month ago, in mid-December 2017. The facility needs to be generating $6,500 in daily revenue to be on budget, and housing more revenue inmates would help accomplish that goal.
"I had a discussion with the sheriff last week. One of the things they reached out to was KDOC [Kansas Department of Corrections], and they're supposed to be getting some KDOC inmates starting to come. And because the Marshal counts ... are staying low, we're not getting any other [inmates] out of county. I'll work with him and get him up here, too, to discuss what changes are occurring out there and what their plan going forward is," William Johnson, county administrator, said.
Wheeler mentioned that Mary Mays was chosen as the new president of the El Dorado Senior Center Board of Directors on Monday night, Jan. 8.
At one point in Tuesday's county commission meeting, the board of commissioners recessed to executive session for 25 minutes to discuss matters relating to public security. In a consultant's review of the ransomware attack on the county's computer network that occurred Sept. 9, 2017, the consultant made several recommendations which needed to be reviewed by the county commission. Due to the sensitivity and security of the facility and systems, discussion with the commission was held in executive session – which is allowed under open meeting laws. County staff reviewed with the commission the consultant's recommendations to help prevent future malware attacks, and no action was taken as a result of the executive session.