Smith County Commissioners – December 4, 2017


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The County Commissioners met in a regular session on December 4, 2017 in the County Commissioners’ Room. Present were Commissioners Tom James, Art Befort, and Roger Allen. Also present were Sharon Wolters, Clerk; and, Mitch Fritz, Road Supervisor.


Befort opened the meeting with prayer.


Commissioners approved the agenda for the December 4, 2017 meeting.


Commissioners revised, approved, and signed the November 27, 2017 minutes.


Commissioners approved voucher #36242-36264 from the following accounts:

General                                   5331.36

EMS                                            67.43

Sm. Co. Vet Memorial               935.48

Health                                       768.95

TOTAL                       $          7,103.22



Befort reported on information from Harper County Landfill Supervisor.  Befort indicated that Harper County has a single county plan and uses an advisory service to assist in completing the five-year update.


Fritz discussed the following:

  1. James discussed solutions for powdered road surfaces.
  2. Fritz asked about using magnesium chloride on Jefferson Street which is shared by the County and the City of Smith Center. Allen asked to delay any decision until the hospital is moved and reevaluate the road at that time.
  3. Fritz discussed W Road between 110 & 120 Roads. Allen suggested contacting the second land owner in that mile prior to publication in order to verify what portion of the road will be closed.
  4. Wolters reviewed the ABBB annual request for employees who use the county vehicle for personal use. Fritz reported that no county road employees use the county vehicle for personal use to drive to and from their blade as defined by the IRS regulation.
  5. Befort reported on information provided by the Jewell County mower operator using the Schulte mower. After some additional discussion, the commissioners made no decision at this time.   Commissioners agreed to do some additional research.   Befort discussed mowing policy and standard of service.   James indicated that he would like to see a demonstration of the Kuhn mower before deciding.
  6. Commissioners discussed purchasing a dump truck. Allen indicated that he wished to consider budget years when deciding what truck will be the best value for the county.
  7. Fritz reported that G Road between 70 & 80 Roads tube maintenance is complete.
  8. Fritz reported that the AA Road and 70 Road location requires on site AT&T representative while work is being completed.
  9. Fritz reported that tube maintenance will be completed on M Road. Commissioners reviewed information on the SnapTite product.  Commissioners did not feel the product could be used at the location discussed.


Befort discussed a request from Smith Center Mayor, Bryce Wiehl, to consider joint projects and will meet with Befort to open dialog.  Befort indicated that he plans to meet with Wiehl on December 28.   Laura Hageman joined the meeting.  Fritz left the meeting.


Laura Hageman, Health Nurse, discussed the following:

  1. Hageman reported that she will attend a regional supervisor advisory council meeting.
  2. Hageman reported that she will attend a Kid-Link meeting this week.

Hageman discussed access to the water lines in the County Health Department basement.   Hageman indicated that all security sensitive materials are independently locked and prevent any contact with safety sensitive materials.   Commissioners approved adding a lock to the inside door as needed.

Penny Levan, Custodian, joined the meeting and discussed the motor on the boiler system in the courthouse.  American Boiler and Service will replace the motor on the boiler today.   LeVan left the meeting.


Allen discussed wages for employees on work comp.  Wolters reported that work comp wages are based on the previous year’s wage case by case.


Befort discussed the new ambulance.  Befort reported that he has requested a schedule for delivery of the new ambulance.


Befort discussed the GIS structure for Smith County.   Befort reviewed information covered at the recent mapping meeting.  Befort also reported on some additional information that he gained after the session.


Fritz rejoined the meeting and reported that C&D out of Red Cloud, NE, does not keep Kuhn Mowers in stock.


Commissioners reviewed a request for specials tax abatement.  Commissioners cast a verbal vote.  Befort and Allen both voted to abate one year of specials fee and James voted to abate two.  Current year of assessment was abated as billed on the 2017 tax statement.


Commissioners signed the Law Enforcement Agreement with the City of Kensington and the Smith County Sheriff.


Commissioners approved one voided check.


Commissioners adjourned to the courthouse basement for the multi-county meeting and discussed the following topics:

Landfill operations

5-Year Landfill Diversion Plans

IT Departments and Services

Reviewed Current Election Results

Regional Planning Commission Services

As there was no further business the meeting was adjourned.

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Derek Nester
Derek Nester
Derek Nester was born and raised in Blue Rapids and graduated from Valley Heights High School in 2000. He attended Cowley College in Arkansas City and Johnson County Community College in Overland Park studying Journalism & Media Communications. In 2002 Derek joined Taylor Communications, Inc. in Salina, Kansas working in digital media for 550 AM KFRM and 100.9 FM KCLY. Following that stop, he joined Dierking Communications, Inc. stations KNDY AM & FM as a board operator and fill-in sports play-by-play announcer. Starting in 2005 Derek joined the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network as a Studio Coordinator at 101 The Fox in Kansas City, a role he would serve for 15 years culminating in the Super Bowl LIV Championship game broadcast. In 2021 he moved to Audacy, formerly known as Entercom Communications, Inc. and 106.5 The Wolf and 610 Sports Radio, the new flagship stations of the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network, the largest radio network in the NFL. Through all of this, Derek continues to serve as the Digital Media Director for Sunflower State Radio, the digital and social media operations of Dierking Communications, Inc. and the 6 radio stations it owns and operates across Kansas.

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