The Mitchell County Commissioners met on Monday morning, August 14. All commissioners were present as well as County Clerk Chris Treaster. Also in attendance was Solomon Valley Community Development Director, Heather Hartman, and Beloit City Manager, Jason Rabe.
Nicole McDaniel, of the North Central Regional Planning Commission, was present to discuss a grant application to the Kansas Heritage Trust Fund for exterior work which could be performed on the Mitchell County Courthouse.
The application process is time consuming and needs to be structured meticulously to give it the best chance of being awarded. This type of work is McDaniel’s specialty but would require after-hours time to prepare it. The commissioners agreed to compensate McDaniel with $350 to prepare the application in hopes of receiving a total of $86,485. Mid-Continent Restoration Services would be the company to do the work should the grant application be approved for funding. The commissioners will provide letters of support and references from five different entities or individuals to include with the application.
EMS Director Kelly Hawk presented the EMS activity report for the month of July. Mitchell County EMS conducted 49 runs, of which 34 were in or near the City of Beloit. Monday’s were the busiest days with a 10-run average. Followed closely by Fridays which averaged nine runs. In 36 of the 49 calls answered by the EMS, a patient was transported to the hospital. In 20 of the 49 calls, the ambulance was en-route within one minute of receiving the call. In 13 instances, the ambulance was en route in less than two minutes. The average patient age from the month was between 80 and 89 years old.
Hawk told the Commissioners that two of the heart monitors used for patients during transport are not working properly. He has made several contacts with the vendors of these monitors. However, he said none of the contacts have proven productive. Their response to messages about the defective machines have been intermittent at best, according to Hawk. After discussing possible actions, the commissioners directed Hawk to see County Attorney Mark Noah as soon as possible to create and submit legal correspondence related to getting the issues resolved.
A Neighborhood Revitalization Grant application from David and Janet Wilcox was approved for temporary tax abatement on a $20,000 project for a home remodel.
Hartman distributed two handouts each to the commissioners. These were the same documents provided to the audience at last Thursday’s First Impressions results meeting. Hartman explained the process of a team of “secret shoppers” from Beloit visiting Clay Center and vice-versa. The visitors from Clay Center drove around town making and recording observations. They then stopped at local businesses to make further observations and critiques. Each of the five members of the team recorded what they liked and what they felt could be improved.
Hartman said, “Their comments may or may not be true, but they are what they saw and the impressions they gave.”
The plan is to now study the reports and make decisions on what actions, if any, should be taken. The general-consensus of the group was that Beloit needed more signage. Particularly in directing people to the downtown business district and Chautauqua Park. They also suggested improvements in the websites for the city and USD 273. The city has been proactively in the process of creating a newly designed website prior to the First Impressions visit.
The Mitchell County Commissioners are next scheduled to meet on Monday, August 21 at 8:30 a.m. in the Mitchell County Courthouse.