By Terry Bailey

The Mitchell County Commissioners conducted their weekly meeting at the Courthouse, Monday morning, November 6th. All Commissioners and the County Clerk were present.
First up was Missy McGinnis, Emergency Medical Services Director. Accompanying McGinnis were three of her EMS personnel, Thomas Hawk, Melissa Mahan, and Amber Robinson. The Commissioners expressed their appreciation for McGinnis bringing along her people so that they better understood the process.
McGinnis reported she has figures regarding the scheduled replacement of one of their older ambulances. The department developed a schedule of replacement of ambulances some time back so that an orderly expenditure of funds would be in order rather than a crisis of need.
McGinnis gave the Commissioners a tentative contract to purchase a new replacement ambulance for MC #1, which is housed in Tipton. The price tag for a new ambulance from Osage Ambulance in Missouri is $258,995. This is roughly $33,000 more that the last ambulance purchased. This would be a gasoline powered vehicle. McGinnis said she had funds in her Capital Outlay account to pay for the purchase. A delivery date in the fall of 2026, almost three years in the future, is scheduled.
Everything that is possibly reusable will be stripped from the old ambulance and recycled for use in the new ambulance. The Osage Company offered what they recognized as a very low-ball amount of $4,500 as a trade in on the old ambulance. The Commissioners requested McGinnis explore selling the stripped out old ambulance on Purple Wave.
McGinnis reported that the Solomon Valley Community Foundation had contributed $5,000 to the purchase of a medical mannequin to use for training. An additional $5,000 has been received from the Hanson Foundation. The Houghton Family Foundation has agreed to donate $2.000 to reach the necessary $12,000 for the purchase of the mannequin.
McGinnis discussed the Mitchell County EMS's participation in the NaCan Awareness Training in Mitchell County. A new EMT class will begin in Beloit on November 27th. The class will alternate training locations with the training being one week in Beloit and the next week in Lincoln.
Dr. Cheney is supervising advanced training for the EMS staff to allow them to be credentialed to perform more advanced techniques than currently possible.
McGinnis requested a ten-minute executive session to discuss non-elected personnel. No action was taken as a result of that closed session.
Mitchell County Sheriff Tony Perez was on hand to deliver the sheriff's department personnel evaluations to the Commissioners. Perez told the Commissioners that he would be in Mulvane, Kansas for the rest of the week participating in training.
The Commissioners approved a contract with Pawnee Mental Health in the amount of $55,645 for services in Mitchell County for the 2024 calendar year.
The Commissioners also approved the writing of a letter of support for the Solomon Valley Transportation as they seek grant funds.
Two slots on the Mitchell County Hospital Health Systems Board of Directors are up for renewal in 2024. The Commissioners were in receipt of a letter of current member Brad Eilert indicating his desire to serve another three-year term. It was reported that Bridget Gasper, another current member, would not be available to serve another term.
In the final action of the morning, the Commissioners placed a phone call to Kelli Hake of Tipton. In 1947 a sheriff's sale was conducted in Tipton and several lots were sold for back taxes. Two went unsold. The County has owned those two lots since that time. Since they are on adjoining lots, the Hake family has been mowing and doing minor upkeep on the property since that time. They have indicated they would like to purchase the lots, since they have been taking care of them for the past sixty or seventy years.
In the phone conversation with Kelli Hake, Jim Marshall said the Commissioners were opposed to the County owning property. He went on to say they would sell them for $1 but that would cause a multitude of problems. When asked what the Hake's might offer for the two lots, she replied, "1,000." In unison the Commissioners exclaimed, "Sold!"
Having address all the items on the printed agenda, the meeting was adjourned.

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