Commissioners

Joey May

Brown County Commissioners met Monday to canvass provisional ballots from last Tuesday’s Primary election. At the end of the table, Commissioner Keith Olsen cuts open the envelopes with the ballots while (from left clockwise) County Clerk Melissa Gormley, Commissioner Dwight Kruse and Commissioner Richard Lehmkuhl observe.

Primary election votes were finalized Monday morning at the Brown County Commission meeting.

The commissioners went into a special canvassing session during their regular meeting to review a total of 44 provisional ballots. As County Clerk Melissa Gormley explained, provisional ballots come from changes in address, name changes or changes in party affiliation that were not done prior to the deadline.

There was one ballot dismissed where a voter had voted twice — the first time with an Advanced Ballot and the second time at the poll. The first ballot was accepted, however the ballot at the poll was not. Brown County Attorney Kevin Hill said he would forward the information to the Brown County Sheriff to investigate as a possible “election crime.”

Following dismissal of 30 of the ballots, 14 total provisional ballots were counted. In local contested races, the following had additional votes from provisional ballots:

Sheriff:

Incumbent John Merchant — 7 provisional for a total of 1,474.

Dennis Entrikin — 4 provisional votes for a total of 760.

Treasurer:

Betty “BJ” Spiker- 5 provisional votes for a total of 1,336

Anne Olson — 5 provisional votes for a total of 798

District 3 Commissioner:

Incumbent Dwight Kruse — 0 provisional votes for a total of 292

William Pollock — 2 provisional votes for a total of 319

Gormley reported there was a tie for the position of Republican Mission Precinct Treasurer within the county. The names drawn were as follows: Alan Yaussi and Tom Lockwood. Alan Yaussi won the coin toss.

Gormley reported a 43.57 percent voter turnout for Brown County, including the provisional ballots. The commissioners voted to accept the Election Audit Report and the Primary Election canvass.

According to the vote — the county will see new commissioners in January as Pollock narrowly beat incumbent Dwight Kruse. Also running unopposed is Lamar Shoemaker for the position of Commissioner District 2 — the seat currently held by Keith Olsen, who did not file for re-election.

In uncontested races, Dawn M. Boyles brought in 1,851 votes for County Clerk, Nellie Brockhoff 1,928 for Register of Deeds, District 22 Judge John Weingart 1,955 and Brown County Attorney Kevin Hill 1,730.

In other business:

Also at Monday’s regular commission meeting, Brown County Emergency manager Don Pounds was available via phone conference. He discussed with the commission several Direct Aid reimbursements from the Spark Fund. Pounds told the commissioners that the funds will not be disbursed until each organization or business provided their signed plan back to the county by Sept. 13.

The total of reimbursements for Direct Aid was $1.594 million to the following entities:

Morrill Public Library: $18,000 (sneeze guards, sanitizers)

Horton Library: $9,000 (sneeze guards, sanitizers)

South Brown County USD 430: $329,700

City of Horton: $28,853.06

Hiawatha USD 415: $355,400

Gencle Sprayers & Chemical: $166,230

Brown County Computer Department: $2,245-mobile video conference setup; $6,281-remote Desktop server; $11,843.37-7 HP notebook computers; $1,370-ThermoVu; $16,320-wages for nurse through December 2020.

Emergency Management: $100,000-PPE, 9 CAPR, medical supplies

Wisdom CPA: $5,000-SPARK admin costs

Health Department: $7,591-vaccine fridge/freezer; $3,874-EMR/CureMD; $30,135-Cepheld COVID test machine; $77,000-Cepheld testing supplies; $2,500-medical supplies; $3,318.89- $3,318.89-Vericooler; $40,000-wages Aug-Dec (add nurse); $1,599.96-Microsoft tablets (2); $1,370-ThermoVu; $747.24-SensaPhone

Town & Country EMS: $17,650-Ivent e700-patient ventilator2; $999-Ivent carrying case 2; $1,395-Ivent Circut 10/care 5; $165,000-Phillips Tempus Pro Monitor for vital signs, defibrilation, prehospital sonogram and video intubation system with telemedicine capability; $13,500-Defib Tech-The arm CPR

KANZA Mental Health: $3,619.95-disinfectant sprayer/solution

Horton Meat Processing: $75,000-expand meat production

Kooser General Store: $99,109.08-expand meat production

In other business:

Brown County Attorney Kevin Hill gave an update on courts, telling the commissioners that bench trials have been occurring but they have to wait for permission from the Kansas Supreme Court before holding jury trials. He said Child in Need of Care hearings have been held via Zoom, which is quite a length process to get set up for all of the parties involved in each case, but necessary due to the number of people who would attend a hearing. He told the commissioners he felt it continued to be helpful to have the nurse monitoring the main entrance to the courthouse as they recently had someone try to come for a court hearing who was positive COVID-19. That person was turned away at the door and not allowed in.

The commission approved to accept the Cereal malt Beverage License for Casino White cloud.

The commissioners reviewed an agreement from Jackson County for disposal of hazardous waste. The commissioners will revisit the issue next week, after speaking to Charlie Brockhoff and George Bruning.

In a special meeting on Wednesday, Aug. 5, the commissioners reviewed two requests for qualifications for the sheriff’s HVAC system. Energy Solutions Professionals and Wildan Performance Solutions were the two companies. The commission voted to accept the proposal from Energy Solutions Professionals.

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