• Last modified 606 days ago (Sept. 22, 2022)


Courthouse turns into hot house

Staff writer

On a day when the temperature hit 100 degrees, county employees walked into a hot courthouse with a wet basement Monday.

Sometime during the weekend, an air conditioning system stopped working properly, and its plastic pipes melted. Water flooded the basement, and the heat built up inside the building.

County clerk Tina Spencer speculated that problem stemmed from a power failure over the weekend.

By the time county commissioners gathered for their 12:30 p.m. meeting Monday, a contractor had looked at the damage and said piping needed to be replaced, but new copper piping would be better than plastic.

There was no effective way to cool the building until repairs were made, she said.

Employees had tried opening windows and running fans, but the building remained hot until repairs were made.

KVK Inc. of Hope had repairs completed by 8 a.m. when employees came to work Tuesday.

Tire damage

During their meeting rural Aulne resident Jerry Mendoza messaged commissioners about reimbursement of expenses for tire damage caused during construction on Aulne Rd.

He said county engineer Brice Goebel had told him to send ay reimbursement request so the county could submit it to its insurance company.

“But he did not give me the name to direct it to so it could get paid to me,” Mendoza said. “Over the last three weeks I have had to replace three tires and will be going in to Wichita to replace another one this week. I have had more tire issues in the last three weeks than the previous four years that we have lived here. Please also advise as to what time frame will I be reimbursed?”

Goebel provided contact information and said he would expect reimbursement within two weeks but “that is out of our hands.”


Emergency medical service director Chuck Kenney said former director Travis Parmley, who had been filling in as a paramedic, had resigned to take a different job.

“I cannot make paramedics appear out of nowhere,” Kenney said.

That leaves the department with four emergency medical technicians, two advanced EMTs, four paramedics, and one registered nurse.

Former Salon

Commissioner Kent Becker suggested that a building along US-56 on Marion’s northern edge might be used to house county attorney and EMS offices.

Commissioners decided a week ago that renovations to make the building suitable for health department use would be too expensive.

The county bought the former Silk Salon building, appraised at $77, 390, for $160,000 and heard bids last week that it would take $693,700 to make it suitable for the health department.

OCCK transportation

Trell Grinter, director of Occupational Center of Central Kansas transportation service, told commissioners about the transportation services his agency provides.

In other communities, OCCK provides a bike share program and regular routes between two towns in addition to a community bus route in Salina.

OCCK offers rides to medical appointments. The organization served 120 to county residents during 2022, Grinter said.

Commissioners also:

  • Reviewed and approved an updated job description for lead dispatcher.
  • Met twice behind closed doors with county counsel Brad Jantz to discuss pending litigation.
  • Met another time in executive session to discuss applications for emergency medical services director.
  • Heard a routine quarterly update from Kenney.

Last modified Sept. 22, 2022