January 2022 Leavenworth County Newsletter

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Board of County Commissioners

The Board of County Commissioners serves as the Chief Legislative and Executive Branch of the County Government. Composed of five members, the Board is elected to a staggered four year terms. Each Commissioner represents a district of the County.

The duties of the Board of County Commissioners include:

  • Approving the County budget and expenditures
  • Appointing the various department heads of the County
  • Exercising powers of local legislation

Capture On Monday, January 17, 2022, our Nation will take time to remember and celebrate the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. This national day of observance recognizes the legacy of a great American who dedicated his life to peace and service. We ask that you find a moment to reflect on Dr. King’s contributions to better our society and the world. Through his writings, speeches, and non-violent actions, he helped us realize the belief that all people are created equal.

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Emergency Management

Portable Heater

With the cost and hassle of replacing central heat, many people are investing in space heaters. They can lower your energy bills by adding direct warmth to the rooms you use most. While these portable heaters can be both efficient and economical, there are a few things you need to keep in mind:

Space Heater Placement

Space heaters should be placed at least 3 feet away from furniture, window treatments, bedding, clothing, rugs, and other combustibles. These items can cause a fire risk if they come in contact with a unit's electric heating element or too-hot surface.

Make sure that the heater is placed on a hard, level surface. Review your owner's manual for specific instructions on your heater. Never sit or drape anything on top of a portable heater, or use it to dry clothing or towels.

Look for Safety Features - Today's portable heater models include various safety features that help take a lot of the worry out of using them:

Overheat Protection

Room heaters with overheat protection detect when internal components become too hot. When an unsafe temperature is detected, the switch automatically shuts off the unit to prevent overheating.

Tip-Over Protection

A heater equipped with a tip-over protection switch will automatically shut off if it's tipped over for any reason.

Cool-Touch Housing

Cool-touch housing prevents accidental burns by touching the exterior of a heater. This feature is handy in areas with active children or pets.

Plug Directly into an Outlet

As a rule of thumb, portable electric heaters should be plugged directly into an outlet with sufficient power capacity. An extension cord should not be used as it increases the chance of overheating, fires, and electrical shock injuries.

Regular Inspection and Maintenance

Occasionally inspect your space heater, particularly when you first purchase it. Then, frequently clean and maintain it to ensure it's working safely. After shutting it down and unplugging it, allow your heater to cool. Wipe down the exterior with a cloth or vacuum to help reduce the amount of dust and allergens that may be dispersed around your space.

Shut Off and Unplug if Not in Use

Please turn off the portable space heater and unplug it upon leaving an area. Many models feature programmable timers that can be used to program automatic on and off times for when you sleep or head to work.

Keep Heaters Away From Water

Unless it is specifically designed for use in damp spaces, refrain from running a heater in a bathroom or a humid basement. Also, don't touch the heater if you are wet or have wet hands, increasing the risk of electrical shock.

Job Openings

Join Our Team

Are you looking for a new career?

Leavenworth County is a great place to work!

You can find all of our current job openings on our job opening section of our website.

December's Employee Spotlights

One of our greatest resources at Leavenworth County is our hard-working county employees. So, weekly we take a moment to post an employee spotlight to recognize a job well done and to help our residents understand a little more about how local government works.

Here are our January Spotlights!


Below is a list of our County employees that are celebrating a work anniversary in the month of January!

We thank each of them for their hard work, dedication, & years of service to Leavenworth County!

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Ginger Lawson, Assistant Motor Vehicle Deputy, County Treasurer's Office

In this week's employee spotlight, we would like to recognize Ginger Lawson, Assistant Motor Vehicle Deputy with the County Treasurer's Office.

Ginger is a tremendous asset to the Treasurer's Office team. She provides excellent service. Ginger embraces the spirit of teamwork, and everyone in the office enjoys the enthusiasm that she brings to work each day! Let's get to know a little more about Ginger.

How long have you worked at Leavenworth County?

I have worked for the Treasurer's office for a total of 9 years.

What do you love about working at the Treasurer's Office?

I love working with the community. I also love bringing simplicity to customers. Some of the processes our office handles can be super confusing and make people very anxious, so being able to help them understand is very rewarding. The best thing is having customers leave with a smile.

Tell us a little about your department?

I work at the Treasurers Annex Located in Tonganoxie. We offer the same services as the Leavenworth Treasurer's Office and also Driver's License renewals. We have one driver's license clerk, three front window clerks, and myself in the back to help with any transaction where questions or problems arise. We have a great team here and in Leavenworth to help the community with their needs.

When people think about the Treasurer's Office, the first thing they probably think of is tagging a vehicle. If you could give the general public some advice or a tip to making the process easier, what would that be?

Preparation and patience are very important. Guidelines can change often. We want to ensure that correct documentation is submitted for a smooth transaction. We have a website for customers to gather any documents they may need, and if needed, we are available by phone during work hours to answer questions or offer guidance.

What do you like to do in your free time?

Myself, my husband and four children love to go camping, fishing, and riding our ATVs. I also help coach a baseball team during the summer.


Pat

Pat Morey, Operations Manager, Emergency Medical Services

We are excited to highlight Pat Morey, Operations Manager Emergency Medical Services, in this employee spotlight. Pat started his EMS career in 1993 with Leavenworth County EMS and completed his paramedic training in 1998. Pat soon became a Shift Supervisor and was promoted to his current position in 2004.

As Operations Manager, Pat is responsible for the entire vehicle fleet, equipment, and schedules within the service.

Thank you, Pat, for your service to County residents.

Pat, tell us a little about yourself?

I got into the emergency services just out of high school when I joined the Tonganoxie City Fire Department. I was a member there for 14 years and was the Assistant Fire Chief when I left. I have two sons and a daughter-in-law, and I'm a new grandpa.

Pat, you have been in the Emergency Services Field for many years now. What are some of the most significant advancements you have seen?

There have been lots of changes. Some of the things we can monitor and assess on patients now, we never would have been able to do back when I started, and some equipment that has been removed from the ambulances altogether.

What is your favorite part of your job?

The main thing that attracted me to this job was that day-to-day was never the same. It was always something different. You came to work and never knew what you were going to be doing. I don't have that so much now with my current position, but thankfully, I still have the freedom to get out on calls when I can.

What would you like residents to know if they ever require service from Emergency Medical Services?

That it is very helpful to have visible address numbers that we can see from the street, there are a lot of houses still that are unmarked.

How do you like to spend your time away from work?

I love traveling the country on my motorcycle, especially riding the hills of Arkansas. I also enjoy spending time with my family and watching my Grandson learn new things.


Larry Malbrough

Larry Malbrough, Director, Information Systems

To round out our January Employee Spotlights, we are excited to feature the Director of Information Systems, Larry Malbrough. Mr. Malbrough has worked for Leavenworth County for almost 23 years. We thank him for his dedication and years of service to Leavenworth County.

Larry can you tell us a little about yourself and how you got into the technology industry?

Leavenworth is my hometown. I was born at Cushing Hospital. At a young age, my family moved to Jefferson County and operated a dairy farm. Milking cows, tending hogs and chickens, as well as the various unending chores of farm life shaped an intense desire to find a career path involving air-conditioned environments. After a stint in the armed services, trained as a personnel administration specialist, I returned to Leavenworth, where I met and later married my wife. We then raised three children who also reside in Leavenworth.

During my freshman year of high school, the school had received its first computer: a Bell & Howell Apple. The school had little idea of what to do with such a device, so it was stationed on a table in the corner of the math classroom. I ignored it for a number months until curiosity overcame me, and I sat down in front of it, bent on figuring out what this "thing" was about. I began learning machine language from what books the school could get their hands on. This turned into writing programs to try out relational databases and graphical capabilities, of which there weren't many at that time. This chance encounter with that old computer led to a forty-year relationship with technology.

Information Systems is a very behind the scenes department, tell us about your role and department.

I have had the pleasure of being with the County during most of its technological advancements, from the addition of the Justice Center, completed in 2000, to a myriad of upgrades and initiatives that have taken place over the last twenty-plus years. From a technological standpoint, the County of today bears little resemblance to its former 1999 self. Through this time period, every project or improvement was balanced with an eye toward fiscal responsibility.

The County has accomplished a great deal over the years and has done so while getting the utmost out of each dollar invested.

The Information Systems Department (I.S.) administrates all of the information technology necessary for county departments to operate. For example, we take care of the servers, network switches, phone system, printers and copiers, etc.

I.S. also provides a help desk which provides technical support to all county employees, assisting with any technical issues that may arise.

Lastly, the department performs asset management of technology assets from purchasing and deployment to disposal.

Larry, what is a piece of advice about working with technology you would like to share?

1) Never open an email attachment or follow a link that you don't trust.
2) Never trust an email attachment or link

County Attorney's Office

A message from County Attorney, Todd Thompson:

We have received multiple reports of children being solicited for sexual purposes over social media. Those solicitations have been by people they know more than strangers. We ask all parents to:

  1. To have access to their child's phone and social media accounts
  2. Be vigilant on who their children communicate with on social media.
  3. Have frequent conversations about this and assure them they will not get in trouble if it happens.
  4. Children need to know it isn't their fault, and they won't get in trouble.
  5. Please report it immediately to the authorities if it happens.

Remember, these devices are not theirs, they are yours, and you have a right to them.

Health Department and Emergency Medical Services

Flu Shot Clinic

Flu Shot Clinic

The Health Department has flu shots available. Flu shots are offered Monday, Wednesday, and Friday between 8 AM - 4 PM. Please call the Health Department to schedule your appointment at 913.250.2000. There is a mask requirement to enter the Health Department, as it is a medical facility.

Most insurances are accepted. Contact the Health Department for more information.


COVID-19 Vaccination Clinic Information

The Health Department offers a weekly Adult Vaccination Clinic (12 years and older) and a weekly Children Vaccination Clinic (Ages 5 - 11)Please check this link for the next available clinic date.

Location: Leavenworth County Health Department, 500 Eisenhower, Leavenworth, KS⁠

  • These are walk-in clinics. No appointments are necessary. No residency requirement.

Council on Aging

Council on Aging Bulletin Board of Events and Services!!
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County Treasurer's Office

Registration renewals for customers with Trailers, Farm Vehicles, or Heavy Trucks can start to renew January 1st through February 28th

  1. Taxpayers may renew up to 60 days in advance of their renewal deadline.
  2. All Renewal notices for Antique vehicles will be sent out by the end of January. Please note, antique Vehicles are not due until the end of December but may be paid at any time.
  3. Drivers License renewals are open at the Annex by appointment only, Tuesday through Friday. Please call the Annex at 913-364-5730 to set up an appointment.

 
For more information about renewing your vehicle, visit this section of our website: Renewing Your License Plate

Planning and Zoning

Map

Here is the case map for January's Planning Cases. The Planning Commission heard these cases at their January 12th, 2022 meeting.

The purpose of the Planning Commission is to make recommendations to the Board of County Commissioners on land use applications, regulations, and policies presented by the Planning and Zoning Department.

These cases will be heard by the Board of County Commissioners for a final determination. The Commission Agenda is posted on the Leavenworth County website and is available for public viewing.

Here are links to the Planning Commission Schedule and Board of County Commissioner Schedule.

Register of Deeds

NEWS AND UPDATES FROM THE REGISTER OF DEEDS OFFICE - January 2022

Scam Alert

Wyandotte County is currently experiencing several scams on unsuspecting buyers, primarily targeting the Hispanic community.; Presidential Flips, LLC poses as a third-party seller of a deceased owner's property, bilking tens of thousands of dollars from his victims by deed theft (see next article.)

In one case (Wyandotte County case No. 2021-MV-000317) although the true owners had died in 2007 and 2017, the manager of Presidential Flips, LLC forged the owner's signatures and dated them on July 7, 2020!

This brings up the importance of filing your loved one's Death Certificate with our office. It becomes public record, so anyone researching a potential sale would see the real owner had passed and the fraudulent seller had no legal right to sell the deceased property, unless they could produce proof of Administrator of a Trust, Power of Attorney, etc.

If you choose to purchase directly from a seller without using a realtor, be certain to check with our office who the owner of record is, and if the person trying to sell you the property is not listed on the vesting deed, you may want to contact your attorney, look for any obituaries, and do much more extensive research before handing over any money.


What is Deed Theft?

Home title theft is also known as deed theft or home title fraud, is when someone by identity theft fraudulently transfers your property deed out of your name and into another name without your consent. But it doesn't just happen to homeowners six years ago, San Diego's baseball stadium owners had to go to court to prove ownership!

The scheme was first reported to the FBI in 2008, and according to the Journal of World Economic Research  deed theft amounted to$547 million in 2020. The Federal Trade Commission reports in the Consumer Sentinel Network Data Book 2019, this is the largest threat consumers face and that it can be considered an internet crime.

Once a title is stolen, the credit reporting service Experian says, the fraudster can then secure as many loans as possible using your equity as collateral. The real homeowner often is completely unaware of the scam until the lender starts to send letters indicating they intend to foreclose on the home.

This is why our Property Fraud Alert notification program is so important: You are notified on the day of any fraudulent filing. This gives you the opportunity to immediately notify your mortgage lender, the three credit reporting services, your attorney and file a case with the Sheriff' office before the fraudsters can act.

If you haven't already subscribed, please take advantage of this free notification system by calling us at 913.684.0424.


High School Internship Opening for 2022

The Register of Deeds for Leavenworth is offering the opportunity for an internship in the office of Register of Deeds to a student attending high school or home school in Leavenworth County. This will include hands-on training with the day-to-day processes of office duties, including the use of computer & microfilm equipment, as well as learning the interactions of all Courthouse county departments. Send your request for an application to TMashburn@LeavenworthCounty.gov. Flexible hours are available to fit students' school schedules.


Sharing the FREE Property Fraud Alert from Register of Deeds

Having shared the benefits of Property Fraud Alert almost 100 times last year through public speeches, booths, and programs at service clubs, the rewards come back to me in various ways. After hearing my presentation, a gentleman recently shared with me that he encouraged a friend why she should file a Transfer on Death Deed. The following month she did come in and filed her form. Two months later, she unexpectedly passed away at 46 years of age, saving her children the heartache of probate because of one page filed in time.

A second gentleman had told his healthy brother about the Transfer on Death Deed after attending one of my programs. His brother thought it was a great idea and came into our office to file his form right away. Within one week, that same brother had unexpectedly passed away in an accident, but his affairs with his property were in order.

In these uncertain times, I encourage you to protect your property by researching the Transfer on Death Deed benefits and talking with your attorney about any questions you may have about it. We have forms you may print off for free at our website.

If you are part of a club or organization looking for a speaker, I am available to share this community service message in person. Call my office at 913.684.0424 or email your request to TMashburn@LeavenworthCounty.gov . I would be happy to share a program on the Register of Deeds.

Please call 913.684.0424 any time in the future that we may assist you with your land record needs.

Transfer Station

kaleidoscope

One of our regular customers came in the other day with this beautiful kaleidoscope he had made for one of our scale attendants. It took him several months to make, and it shows! It's stained glass with glass tubes that sparkle with glitter. We were overwhelmed with the kind gift and very thankful! We, at the Transfer Station, hope everyone had a wonderful Holiday and a Happy New Year!


Christmas Recycling Leavenworth County Residents can bring their real Christmas trees and discarded Christmas lights, to the Transfer Station, to be recycled for no fee.

When:  Between December 1, 2021 and January 29, 2022.
How: Please wait in line and come across the scale and let the scale attendant know what you have.


The Transfer Station would like to introduce our newest employee, Chuck Urwin. He is our new Solid Waste Operator, and we are so happy to have him. He's learning his new job and will be a wonderful asset to our facility. He is a veteran, and we thank him for his service. If you come to the Transfer Station, say hello to Chuck. Chuck

GIS

GISGIS is located in the basement of the Courthouse.

GIS handles a wide variety of mapping functions. In addition, we support the cartographic needs of other County and City Offices and Police, Fire, EMS, Utilities, Private Companies, Surveyors, and the Public.

GIS is a growing archive of many map 'layers.' Aerial photos (ranging from 1941 to current), property boundaries, land use, roads, hydrology, flood zones, elevation, municipal boundaries, water districts, school districts, tax districts, to name a few. They create and maintain new layers as projects develop.

Our GIS technicians are busy building new map layers and constantly updating the old ones with the latest information to make our Interactive Map as helpful as possible. If you need something other than that map viewer can provide, don't hesitate to contact us. We would be happy to help you.

Other map services available from our department include:

  • Providing Geo-Referenced map layers like shapefiles and geodatabases.
  • Mapping legal descriptions.
  • Producing a list of property owners within a given radius of a parcel for Special Use Permits, Rezoning, etc.
  • Scanning and printing large format documents and maps. (up to 3' wide and 12' long)
  • Custom maps built upon request of any combination of map layers we have.
  • Custom databases and reports built from your unique criteria.
  • Time tracking aerial photos from 1941 to the present day.
  • Historical map archive including layers such as old wagon trails, cemeteries, circa 1870 school houses, abandoned railroads, etc.
  • Specific wall maps such as landowners, school districts, flood maps, land use, etc.

We can provide an aerial photo of any property that shows right-of-ways, property lines, creeks and ponds, buildings, flood zones, elevation, soil types, land use, etc. Since this office was created, the information is all kept up-to-date. If we don't have the kind of map you need, we can direct you to who does.

If you have any questions, please contact us!

Public Works

With winter weather upon us, many people begin to ask about snow and ice removal on their roadways and along their daily commutes. Utilizing its fleet of trucks, motor graders, and other heavy equipment, the Public Works Department facilitates the removal of snow and ice from the roadways of Leavenworth County to provide safe passage for emergency responders, residents, and other motorists during periods of inclement winter weather. All efforts are made to maximize the limited resources and provide the most effective removal of snow and ice, as outlined within the Policy on Snow and Ice Removal. This policy prioritizes first, the roads with highest traffic volumes and common emergency routes, second, the roadways that provide connectivity between local roads and those primary routes, and third, all remaining roadways including local and subdivisions.

In the event of forecasted snowfall, primary routes and high-intensity areas will typically receive chemical treatment in efforts to reduce icy roadways during the upcoming snowfall. During a minor snowfall (accumulation of less than 1" on hard surface roads or 3" on gravel roads), limited operations will focus primarily on high-intensity areas such as bridges, hills, and intersections and along the primary routes. During moderate or heavy snowfall (accumulation of 2" - 8"), all available equipment will be deployed to focus on snow removal along primary and secondary routes. The tertiary routes, local roadways, and subdivisions will be cleared after all primary and secondary routes have been cleared. Gravel roadways are maintained by our motor grader fleet and will only be deployed after 3" of accumulation has occurred. In the event of an extremely heavy snowfall (8" or more within 24 hours or whiteout conditions), operations will be postponed, pending weather condition improvements. These extreme events can cause dangerous, life-threatening conditions to our snow/ice control operators.

Every storm event is different, and although some may create greater needs due to winds and drifting snow, the Road & Bridge Department does expect to have all roads cleared within 36-72 hours after the end of the storm. For additional detailed information or to identify the priority of your roadway, the policy and priority map can be found on the Public Works page of the Leavenworth County website. Leavenworth County staff appreciates your patience while we work to keep our roads as safe as possible, and we ask that you take extra care when traveling during any winter weather event.

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Building and Grounds

The Building and Grounds Department actively has three major projects being worked on at this time.

Our Cushing Building is in demo mode on the 1st and 3rd floors in preparation for the remodel. Plans are being finalized, and bids should go out shortly from the respective architects and design firms. New boilers have been installed in the building and are running as they should.

At this time, Transfer Station scales have been set, and the second scale house is in place. Most cameras and furnishings have been installed, and the project should be completed by the end of January.

The Juvenile Detention Center conversion is in the final walk-thru stage of completion. It appears that by the end of January, all industry standards will have been met, and Community Corrections should be ready to take possession of the facility to move in.

At the Courthouse, we've ordered the new door for the exterior kitchen entrance and are waiting for it to arrive. We've replaced lighting throughout the building and have been working floor by floor to address maintenance issues.

Plans are in the works for moving offices around once Community Corrections has been moved to its new building for Court Services at the Justice Center. When one office moves, this usually trickles down to every department in some fashion. We'll do our best to accommodate and attend to each request.

Sewer Districts are seldom discussed but are very important. With the retirement of Mike Goetz, Zach Farr, Wastewater Trainee, has moved up and is working towards his certification. We've purchased a brush hog that will be used for maintenance at all lagoons, and we've been passing KDHE inspections.

B&G is affected by the ever-changing weather, from snow removal to salting and sanding parking lots and sidewalks. We have more locations we're responding to and have the same number of staff. Our guys are amazing, and we appreciate your patience. Please let us know of any slick spots you encounter. Be cautious and be safe.

Please report any maintenance issues to maintenance@leavenworthcounty.gov

Facility Maintenance


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