July 27, 2007


Governing Board Meeting

Kansas Association of Counties

July 27, 2007

Lower Level Conference Room, 300 SW 8th

Topeka, Kansas


President Dennis Peterson called the meeting to order at 10:00 a.m. Board members present were as follows:


Michele Abbott-Becker, Marion County Emergency Management Director; Joe Connor, Unified Government Health Department Administrator; Ted Ensley, Shawnee County Commissioner; Shannon Francis, Seward County Commissioner; Steve Garten, Barber County Commissioner; John Miller, Norton County Commissioner; Terry David, Rice County EMS Director; Tom Winters, Sedgwick County Commissioner; Dick Works, Allen County Commissioner; Gary Post, Lyon County Appraiser; Dennis Peterson, Riley County Noxious Weed Director; Larry McAulay, Johnson County Director of Legal Services; Tom Wagner, Atchison County Commissioner; George Pogge, Jefferson County Road Superintendent; and Sheila Biggs, Dickinson County Commissioner.


KAC Staff and others present: Randall Allen, KAC Executive Director; Mike Smith, Senior Legislative Director/Staff Attorney.


The agenda was presented. No changes were suggested. Ted Ensley moved, seconded by Larry McAulay, to accept the agenda as presented. Motion carried.


Minutes for June 15, 2007. Steve Garten moved, seconded by Tom Winters, to approve the minutes of the June 15, 2007 meeting as presented. Motion carried.


Approval of Bills and Payroll for July 27, 2007. John Miller, Finance Committee Chairman, indicated that the committee had met prior to the meeting to review the invoices and there were items of special concern. John Miller moved, seconded by Ted Ensley, to approve the bills and payroll dated July 27, 2007. Motion carried.


Approval of Monthly Financial Report for June, 2007. Randall presented the monthly financial report for June, 2007. He noted that the “budgeted amounts” reflect the receipt of the $50,000 KDOT grant for the Local Road Engineer Program and a separate $50,000 grant for the Transportation Breakthrough Team (Kansas Collaborative). Disbursements in the Local Road Engineer program are largely for services of Bowers Engineering (Norm Bowers), which provides engineering services to local governments. Terry David moved, seconded by George Pogge, to receive and place on the file the Monthly Financial Report for June, 2007. Motion carried.


President’s Report. President Dennis Peterson reported on his travel to the recent NACo Annual Conference in Richmond, Virginia. He said that Antwone Fisher was his favorite speaker. Fisher’s story is the basis for the movie, Finding Fish, which won wide acclaim. Dennis also reported on the cliff-hanger race for the 2nd Vice President of NACo, between Glen Whitley of Texas and Teresa Altemus of Virginia.


National Association of Counties Report. Steve Garten, NACo representative, also reflected on the recent NACo Annual Conference in Richmond. Steve said that several persons inquired about the 2008 annual conference being held in Kansas (actually Kansas City, Missouri), thinking that Kansas City is wholly in Kansas. Board discussion ensued about the need for Jackson County, Missouri to include Kansas counties in the metropolitan area, as well as the KAC, in its plans for the 2008 conference. Steve said that there are 78 new NACo member counties since January 1, 2007 and that over 800 counties across America are now participating in the NACo prescription drug program. He said that a new dental services discount program is being rolled out, and that Sedgwick County has indicated its desire to be a pilot for the new dental program.


Legislative Report. Mike Smith, new staff member recently hired, distributed a copy of the schedule of interim legislative committee topics for the summer/fall of 2007. There are several topics which concern counties, including the possibility of moving toward a district attorney system statewide, as well as county sales tax authority, and the appraisal of constructed, but not yet inhabited residential property on January 1 of any given year. The latter is a proposal from the Homebuilders of Greater Kansas City, and will be heard by the Special Committee on Taxation in the fall.


Review of History of Association with Team Tech, Inc., and the Work of the Kansas Collaborative. Executive Director Allen reviewed a chronology of events and work in the relationship between the KAC and Team Tech, relative to the Kansas Collaborative. The relationship began in the fall/winter of 2002-2003 with development of a white paper on health and human services, which was shared with then-Secretary Janet Schalansky of SRS. Randall then reviewed the steps in planning a Health and Human Services Summit; formation of the Medical Costs Breakthrough Team to find ways to control and reduce inmate health care costs in county jails and juvenile facilities; the Sharing Approaches that Work forums in April – May, 2005; launch of the Kansas Collaborative in November, 2005; launch of the GIS Breakthrough Team and the assistance of the Information Network of Kansas in catalyzing efforts around GIS; and establishment of the Local Road Engineer Program, an outgrowth of the Transportation Breakthrough Team. Allen then reviewed the biographical summaries for Team Tech personnel, i.e. Kathleen Harnish-Doucet and Joel Wright.


Presentation and Discussion concerning the Kansas Collaborative Agreement. Executive Director Allen presented and reviewed a document which had been prepared and discussed by all parties to the proposed agreement (i.e. State, League of Kansas Municipalities, Team Tech, and the KAC), which declares the KAC to be the fiscal agent of the Kansas Collaborative and grants express authority for the parties to use the service mark, The Kansas Collaborative, in their operations as long as Team Tech is managing the activities and operations of The Kansas Collaborative.


Board discussion ensued about the rationale for the agreement; how projects of the Collaborative are approved (currently and in the future); whether or not we are at risk of over-extending our resources if the approval of not projects is not controlled in some way; what rights to use the “service mark” mean; and how the KAC is to be compensated for its role as fiscal agent.


Tom Winters moved, seconded by Gary Post, to express to Team Tech, Inc. that the KAC Board wants to be in a move-forward mode, but that questions concerning the Agreement need to be addressed and the board satisfied with such answers prior to giving approval to the Agreement, as presented. Motion carried unanimously. It was understood that the KAC staff would further consult with board member Larry McAulay, who offered several questions and possible substitute or additional language to be considered in a final agreement, prior to bringing the Agreement back to the KAC Board for its approval.


Review and Approval of Bylaws for the KAC Employee Benefits Trust. Randall presented a draft of Bylaws to govern the activities of the KAC Employee Benefits Trust. The draft was prepared by attorney Brian Johnston, Lathrop and Gage, and discussed by the Trustees of the Employee Benefits Trust at its recent meeting, prior to bringing it to the KAC Board for final approval. After considerable discussion about the draft bylaws,

Larry McAulay moved, seconded by Shannon Francis to defer action on the proposed Bylaws until the September 21, 2007 meeting. Motion carried.


A recess of the meeting was called at 12:10 p.m. for the purpose of having lunch.


President Dennis Peterson called the meeting back to order at 12:40 p.m.


Executive Session. Sheila Biggs moved, seconded by Shannon Francis, for the board to go into executive (closed) session for the purpose of discussing personnel matters of non-elected personnel, specifically the performance appraisal for the Executive Director, for a period of ten minutes. Motion carried. Time: 1:03 p.m.


At 1:13 p.m., the Board emerged from Executive Session. Indicating that they needed additional time for the discussion, Sheila Biggs moved, seconded by Steve Garten, to extend the executive session by an additional ten minutes, or until 1:23 p.m.


At 1:23 p.m., the Board emerged from the Executive Session, as previously extended. President Dennis Peterson stated that no action was taken during the closed session and that nothing was discussed other than the subject previously described.


Discussion concerning possible teleconference meetings for some KAC Governing Board meetings. President Dennis Peterson told the board that he wanted to inquire as to how the board felt about holding board meetings by teleconference. He said that teleconference meetings would obviously save overall time and money (travel time, fuel expense, hotel expense) but there would be a loss in face-to-face interaction. The board discussed the concept, and there was consensus that for single-subject meetings where immediate action is required, or where previously there has been ample briefing and discussion before being requested to take action, that a teleconference meeting could work quite well. Board members expressed concern about multi-topic agendas being addressed by teleconference, due to several factors, including sound quality, a tendency to “tune out” what is going on in the meeting and pay more attention to what is happening in each members’ office or home, and an inability to “read” the body language and thoughts of other board members through a mere phone conversation. Dennis said that he would take the board’s thoughts into consideration if teleconference meetings are ever considered. No board action was taken in this regard.


Executive Director’s Report. Randall briefed the board on the following topics:

  • Kansas County Government Institute workshops – an updated schedule of summer and fall workshops prepared by Sarah Meyer was distributed. Allen called special attention to the “Leadership for a Productive County Workforce” workshop in Salina on September 19, and two “Effective Community and Media Communications” workshops in Hays and Emporia on August 8 and 9, respectively.
  • A draft agenda for the 32nd Annual KAC Conference was distributed, along with a list of contracted exhibitors as of this week. Allen indicated that the Exhibition will be much larger in 2007, due in large part to Sarah Meyer’s aggressive marketing efforts.
  • Allen distributed a copy of a marketing plan for the NACo/KAC deferred compensation program administered by Nationwide Retirement Solutions, and indicated that staff is working to implement strategies contained therein.
  • Allen distributed a booklet, 10 Essential Public Health Services, as requested in a previous meeting by Shannon Francis, in follow-up to a presentation at the May, 2007 KCCA meeting in Hutchinson.
  • Allen informed the board that he had attended one of four sessions held in southeast Kansas for the purpose of legislators and state agency heads to hear and respond to concerns of southeast Kansans impacted by recent flooding. Allen attended the meeting in Osawatomie. In response to a question about whether there were state monies available for vaccines to immunize victims and rescue/response workers, Allen distributed a letter from KDHE indicating that such monies are available.


KAC Affiliate/Associate Information Exchange.


Dennis Peterson reported on a tour in Butler County at a recent CWDAK conference in Butler County. He said that they took a tour of pasture land being grazed, and that wind turbines and cattle do mix.


Gary Post said that five Kansas counties currently need county appraisers. They include: Wilson, Ness, Dickinson, Kiowa and Barton counties. He said that with the retirements that have already been announced to occur in the next two years, a total of 32 counties will need to find new county appraisers. Gary also reported on Lyon County’s selection as a pilot county for the GIS inventory, a project of the GIS Breakthrough Team of the Kansas Collaborative, so that there can be a web-based inventory of the digitized data layers that are available – county by county.


Michele Abbott-Becker asked whether the County Counselors Association of Kansas (CCAK) needed to look at the revitalization programs and whether any special language is needed. She told the board that 100% of all homeland security monies now goes to the regions and that monies are being cut.


Larry McAulay inquired about wind energy, and whether there needed to be any enabling legislation for counties to proceed with “community-scale” wind farms. Under the public purpose doctrine, can public monies be used to develop wind energy? Sheila Biggs indicated that school districts are doing this.


George Pogge called attention to the Learning Committee’s upcoming meeting in Salina, on August 24.


Dick Works told the board that the recent flooding in southeast Kansas will only exacerbate an already extreme housing shortage.


Terry David said that the KEMSA Annual Conference is scheduled in three weeks and already, 61 vendors are signed up to exhibit.


Dennis Peterson reminded the board that the next meeting will be held on September 21 in Hays, with the board joining the Kansas Emergency Management Association (KEMA) for dinner on Thursday, September 20, also in Hays.


The meeting was adjourned at 2:15 p.m.


Respectfully submitted,



Randall Allen

Executive Director







Joe Connor, KAC Board Secretary

September 21, 2007