Stefanie Cope

Staff Writer

Escaping livestock are creating problems for area farmers in Cherokee County.

Zack Hemphill told the Cherokee County Commission Monday Travis and Todd Hale’s goats have been coming into his bean fields and eating his crops.

Hemphill told commissioners he wanted to find out what options are available to him to help take care of this problem.

Cherokee County Commissioner Pat Collins told Hemphill there were a few options available to him. Collins said he can take the Hales to small claims court for the damages, have a complaint filed about the problem, pen up the animals and charge the Hales for the time it took to pen up the goats or Hemphill can sue the Hales in civil court.

Additionally David Jenkins, who works for Kansas Wildlife and Parks, came to the commission for permission to continue controlled burns on the wildlife areas in Cherokee County.

The commissioners approved a county wide burn ban at the commission meeting July 18. The ban will be in effect until further notice.

Jenkins told the commissioners he had spoken with Cherokee County Emergency Management Director Jason Allison about continuing some of the controlled burns. Jenkins said Allison had said it would be all right to continue the burns as long as the commissioners approved. Jenkins told commissioners they would be having the burns in safe areas surrounded by pits and each controlled burn would have a burn plan. Jenkins also told commissioners they have their own fire trucks and would only be burning on days which were conducive to a controlled burn. The commissioners asked Jenkins if he would be notifying the area fire departments when they would be having their burns. Jenkins told them yes and the commissioners approved allowing controlled burns by KDWP.

Betty McBride came to the commissioners to make a payment plan for the elevator loan from Exchange Bank.

McBride told commissioners there was a three year plan and a five year plan available to the county for repayment. She also told commissioners they could pay monthly or annually.

The commissioners decided to have a five year repayment plan and they would pay annually. The payments will be $22,411.72 per year.

Commissioners said the elevator will cost over $150,000.

In addition, Chief Court Services Officer and Community Corrections Administrative Director Mac Young asked commissioners to sign the 2012 carry over reimbursement budget.

Young said there is about $13,000 available in the reimbursement. He said the money has to be put into a workbook that helps to decide how it will be spent.

Commissioner Collins moved to have Cherokee County Commission Chairman Jack Garner sign the reimbursement budget summary and narrative. It was seconded by Cherokee County Commissioner Richard Hilderbrand and approved.

Cherokee County Sheriff David Groves told commissioners instead of letting the grant expire they will extend the grant. Groves said Spring River Elementary School in Galena will be putting security cameras into the building and using the grant to help pay for the cameras.

Commissioners also approved moving the regularly scheduled commission meeting from August 1 to August 4 because of a meeting the commissioners must attend. The meeting will be 9 a.m. August 4. It will be a regular meeting.