Deadline nears for funding applications



January 10, 2018 - 12:00 AM

Jan. 17 is the deadline to make application for the next round of considerations by the county’s Economic Development Committee. The committee makes grants and loans to help support existing businesses or new business ventures from reserves generated by a massive increase in assessed valuation.
Commissioners made $150,000 available for 2017 and another $150,000 this year for the purpose. At it first meeting in December, committee members denied the two requests made. One group requested $100,000 to help make Stub’s Market in Moran a food cooperative. The second request was was for $20,000 to help buy a refrigeration unit for the Mildred store.
Commissioners asked representatives of each to visit with committee members, and gave them advantage of reapplying without paying a second $200 fee. Bolling Meats and the school technology center near LaHarpe are on the agenda to make cases for assistance at the committee’s next session on Feb. 6.
Commissioner Jerry Daniels said if the Moran and Mildred requests were not considered again, commissioners have an obligation to take a look themselves. “I’m not closing the door” on them, he said at the Tuesday meeting of county commissioners.
Enbridge’s extension of a 36-inch pipeline to carry oil from Illinois to Oklahoma and a pumping station southeast of Humboldt increased county valuation to the point about $4 million have been accrued in reserves.
County Clerk Sherrie Riebel said she had had several inquiries about application.

IN OTHER NEWS, commissioners:
— Recognized employees honored with Kansas Association of Counties service awards: Kellee Woods, Teena Solander, Rachel Covey, Harry Maley, Dana Dawn and Dathan McMurtrey, eight years; Roy Smith, Jeff Jackson, Laureen Sampson and Ron Holman, 16 years; Isabelle Pliler, Jill Allen and Sherrie Riebel, 24 years; Cara Barkdoll, 32 years.
— Tom Williams was elected commission chairman for 2018, taking the gavel from Jim Talkington. For years commissioners have been in the habit of moving the chairmanship around the table.
— Agreed to put off razing a house directly south of the G&W store, once owned by the county and now by Iola Industries. The county earlier agreed to remove the house. Job Springer, on behalf of Iola Industries, said a party wanted to lease the house and refit it as a rental, “which will keep it on the tax rolls.”
— Learned five enrollees will be be graduated from District Court’s drug program Thursday.

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