Saline County Commissioners will accept a $132,000 Community Development Block Grant to be used for grants or loans for for-profit businesses. According to the county, they applied for these funds back in May but were not awarded in the first round of funding. A second round of funding became available and Saline County was selected, as was the City of Salina. The North Central Regional Planning Commission will be serving as the grant administrator and their fee is $12,000 which will be paid with the grant funds received.
In other county business:
- Tim Hamilton, Planning & Zoning Administrator provided an update on activities that have taken place from January 1st through July 31st of 2020. A total of 35 building permits have been issued which is an increase of 13 from this same time in 2019. Revenue is also up by a little over $15,000 from last year, with a total so far of $57,623.50. Revenues are from building permit fees as well as fees for septic and well permits and other environmental services.
- Justin Mader, County Engineer, provided each Commissioner with a well-organized binder that provided information on the Special Road Construction fund, Road Classifications, and several maps that outline the County road management program in Saline County. Commissioners will meet with the Road & Bridge and Engineering Departments in a special study session out at Road & Bridge on August 18th so they can discuss in more detail the gravel road upgrade program and the future of Saline County’s road upgrades.
- On April 7th, the Commissioners voted to place a question on the November ballot asking for voters to approve a half-cent sales tax for the construction of a jail and issue bonds. Today, they heard from David Arteberry with Stifel, Nicolas & Company who is the County’s financial advisor for this project. Mr. Arteberry provided the Commission with what a bond payment would look like as well as anticipated sales tax revenues. He explained that they took a very conservative approach to projecting these numbers. Through their conservative projections, the Jail project with the price tag of $89,655,000 could be paid off in 18 years and the sales tax could end. Commissioners will take action in two weeks, August 18th, in considering the adoption of the language that will go on the November ballot. Information about the Jail Project can be found on our website https://www.saline.org/Jail-Project-2020.
- Phillip Smith-Hanes, County Administrator, provided his update to Commissioners reporting on the Coronavirus Funding Advisory Committee’s meeting that was held yesterday, August 3rd. Applications for direct aid were accepted until 5 pm on July 31st. A total of 106 applications were received with requests that totaled just a little over $16.6 Million. The County has $11,026,434 that can be distributed to local governments, schools, organizations, and businesses. The Committee began reviewing the applications and will continue their review this week in order to bring a recommendation to the Commissioners on August 11th for their approval to submit a plan to the State of Kansas. All information about the Coronavirus Relief Fund can be found on our website https://www.saline.org/Coronavirus/CRF-Funding.
- Lastly, Commissioner Vidricksen reminded everyone that the public hearing for the 2021 budget for Saline County, Kipp Sewer, and Rural Fire Districts 1-7 is scheduled for next Tuesday, August 11th.