Category Archives: Bourbon County

Shead Farm Homestead Festival This Saturday May 21

Saturday, May 21, 2022

10:00 am – 5:00 pm

Live music | Children’s Activities | Farm Tour

Farm Store | Vendors | Food Court

Admission: Single ticket – $5 or family (4+) $20


Bourbon County Commission Minutes of May 9

May 9, 2022 Tuesday 9:00 am
The Bourbon County Commission met in open session with Commissioners Harris,
Commissioner Oharah and the County Clerk were present for the entire meeting.

Commissioner Beth was present by phone during the executive session.

Also present for the meeting were Justin Meeks, Shane Walker and Susan Bancroft.

Jim made a motion to go into executive session under KSA 75-4319(b)(1) to discuss personnel matters of individual non-elected personnel to protect their privacy, the Commissioners will meet in another location and reconvene in this room at 9:16am.
The session will be for 15 minutes and will include Commissioners Harris and Oharah (Commissioner Beth by phone) Justin Meeks, Shane Walker and Susan Bancroft. Lynne seconded. Jim and Lynne approved.
Lynne made a motion to resume normal session at 9:16am. Jim seconded. Both approved.
Lynne made a motion to allow Susan Bancroft to address and rectify a personnel issue.
Jim seconded. Both approved.

Jim made a motion to adjourn the meeting. Lynne seconded. Both approved.

Meeting adjourned at 9:17am.



(ss) Jim Harris, Chairman

(ss) Lynne Oharah, Commissioner

(ss) Clifton Beth, Commmissioner

Bourbon County Commission Minutes of May 3

May 3, 2022 Tuesday 9:00 am
The Bourbon County Commission met in open session with all three Commissioners and the
County Clerk present.

Matt Crystal, Clint Walker, Bill Martin, Matt Quick and Jason Silvers were also present for all or some of the meeting.

Clifton made a motion to approve the previous meetings minute. Lynne seconded. All approved.

Eric presented a new field entry permit request from Joe Warren just south of 1161 50th street.
Lynne made a motion to approve the culvert permit. Clifton seconded. All approved.

The next permit is Josh Query on 2504 Limestone completion. The last one Christian Gospel Chapel.
You approved this one but once we got in there it ended up being a replacement. No extensions needed.

Asphalt meeting we talked about the Onyx. On 235th it is 4.8 miles and on 75th it’s 1 mile and that equals 5.8 miles for a price of $107,490.24. There is a 5 year warranty. Lynne
made a motion to go with the proposal for Onyx. Clifton seconded. All approved.

Eric stated with all the rain lately, they have been working 12 hours on dry days so that they can get gravel on the roads. Then later in the week when it’s raining they leave early to maintain 40 hours per
week. Eric stated he is keeping an eye open for another truck. Diesel is up around the $5.00 mark and we trying to cut corners everywhere we can and still remain productive.

Bridge at 160th & Fern work is coming along. Our bi-annual bridge inspections are completed and will be sent to KDOT. Once that is complete, they will be back to inspect our low water crossings.

Jimasked that Eric keep an eye on the ditch that is across the road from the cemetery on the east side of Horton out by Evergreen Cemetery. Jim said the water running has cut the ditch deep. Eric
stated the crusher should be showing up around the early part of next week if all goes well.

Clifton stated that he noticed a grader had cut some ditches up in their area and they did a good

Eric reported to Lynne that they took some gravel to the cemetery up on Yale Road but was not able to dump because of low hanging limbs. He also stated that he has on his list to take gravel to the cemetery on 160th.

Becky Johnson from the SEK Multi-County Health Department appeared to request their annual funding. We are continually expanding and adding new programs to better serve Bourbon
County. We are applying for two new grants hoping to provide some new services to the community. We are proposing a request of $90,750.00 for the year of 2023 which remains the
same as last year. Services that we have provided in the last 12 months outside our normal scope: Covid 19 Case Investigations, contract tracing, fielding numerous Covid 19 related calls,
work and school release letters for isolation and quarantine, providing public guidance and education via newspaper, radio and Facebook, attending Covid 19 taskforce meetings, send
regular updates and risk levels to schools. Also, updated commissioners and emergency managers as well as attending Covid 19 webinars 4 days per week. We provided masks and
vaccination clinics to the public and businesses. We had a lot of help from our community to make this possible. We worked afterhours and on weekends to make sure ones needs and expectations were met.

Justin Meeks, County Counselor stated that he is pushing the next tax sale back to late June as some of the properties are slated for demolition. Seventy percent of the sale properties have
special assessments. The average price of the properties will be $8,000.00. We did send out the
2017 demand letters with the help of Patty’s office.

Justin requested an executive session.
Clifton made a motion to go into executive session KSA 75-4319(b)(2) for consultation with an
attorney for the public body or agency which would be deemed privileged in the attorney-client
relationship for 4 minutes returning at 9:22am including 3 commissioners and Justin Meeks.
Lynne seconded. All approved. Clifton made a motion to resume normal session with no action.
Lynne seconded. All approved.

Susan Bancroft requested an executive session. Clifton made a motion for an executive session KSA 75-4319(b)(1) to discuss personnel matters of individual nonelected personnel to protect
their privacy including 3 commissioners and Susan Bancroft for 5 minutes returning at 9:28am.
Lynne seconded. All approved. Clifton made a motion to return to normal session with no action. Lynne seconded. All approved.

Shane Walker, CIO, stated that the tower out east is now operational. We have ordered the other for Hidden Valley should be here in about 7 weeks. It is 150 feet. We’ll do another 100’ one at
Tomahawk. We will put one on the water tower in Garland.

Clifton made a motion for an executive session KSA 75-4319(b)(2) for consultation with an attorney for the public body or
agency which would be deemed privileged in the attorney-client relationship including 3 commissioners, Susan Bancroft, Shane Walker, and Justin Meeks for 15 minutes returning at
9:46am. Lynne seconded. All approved. Clifton made a motion to return to normal session at 9:46am with action. Lynne seconded. All approved.

Clifton made a motion for Susan Bancroft and Shane Walker to meet with Kevin Ross in the near future. Lynne seconded. All approved.

Public Comment: No comment

Elected Official Comment: Bill Martin asked about EMS coming back to the county. Bill asked how we could take on the EMS when they have not been able to get raises. Susan clarified that
the County has always paid for EMS. It has always been county funded. Jim stated that there is no new dollars involved. Bill stated that Johnson County Medical Examiner Medical Office
would like to be considered to do our autopsies. Susan stated that she is already in communication with them.

Ashley stated that she and a member of her department would be attending the Kansas County Clerk meeting being held in Salina.

County Commission Comment: Lynne stated that Susan has lots of traffic in her office and if you
need to visit with her, please conduct business and move on. She is very busy and needs time.

At 9:55am, Lynne made a motion to adjourn. Clifton seconded. All approved.



KDOT employees celebrate service anniversaries

Phillip Pavey, Fort Scott, celebrates service anniversary

The Kansas Department of Transportation expresses its appreciation for employees celebrating state service anniversaries in June. KDOT is proud to acknowledge them for the long-term dedication they have provided to the state of Kansas.


Those celebrating 30 years:

  • Marty Eshelman, Equipment Mechanic Specialist, Harper
  • Brian Gower, Bureau Chief, Lawrence
  • James Gray, Highway Maintenance Supervisor, Leon
  • Darrin Petrowsky, Professional Civil Engineer II, Iola
  • Duane Petty, Engineering Technician Senior, George
  • Michael Terrell, Highway Maintenance Supervisor, Norton

Those celebrating 20 years:

  • Todd Anderson, Construction Manager, Oakley
  • Justin Shaw, Engineering Technician Specialist, Lawrence
  • Daniel Wadley, Bureau Chief, Topeka

Those celebrating 10 years:

  • Cody Braz, Equipment Operator Specialist, Francis
  • Cory Davis, Assistant Bureau Chief, Topeka
  • Phillip Pavey, Equipment Operator Senior , Fort Scott

Scout Trees Now to Prevent Future Problems

Krista Harding
District Extension Agent, Horticulture
Southwind Extension District
111 S. Butler
Erie, KS 66733
Office: 620-244-3826
Cell: 620-496-8786

Scout Trees Now to Prevent Future Problems

Trees are a huge asset to the landscape. They offer us considerable energy savings when properly placed. Whether you have just planted new trees or have large majestic trees, they can become the targets of disease, insects and human error that can slow their growth and even kill them. This article will cover several tree troubles to be on the lookout for in the next few weeks.

First, I want to address mulching. Unfortunately, as I drive around our communities, I continue to see what is known as the “mulch volcano.” This is the practice of piling mulch high up the trunk of a tree and sloping it down towards the ground – like the shape of a volcano!

When mulch is applied in this manner, it is very detrimental to the tree. It confuses the tree to thinking that the soil level has changed. This will cause the tree to start growing roots into the mulch and can even start to cause decay in the trunk. Mulch applied too deeply can actually prevent moisture from reaching the soil and suffocate the roots – causing the tree to die.

If you are guilty of the mulch volcano, it can easily be fixed by dragging the mulch away from the trunk and reshaping the pile. Mulch should be kept 3-6 inches away from the trunk and should be spread out away from the tree in each direction at least 3 feet – more if you can. As for mulch thickness, 3 to 4 inches is all that is needed.

The pine trees in our area continue to decline. Have you noticed how some pines are exhibiting an abnormal amount of browning to the needles? The trees have been hit by Dothistroma needle blight. This is a common and serious disease of pines. This needle blight is characterized by the heavy loss of older, inner needles, plus the appearance of small black fruiting structures on needles in the spring. Copper-containing fungicides can be used for control. However, many of the trees in our area may have already been lost.

Finally, bagworm season is nearing. They are a yearly pest in our area and can cause considerable damage. Eastern red cedar and junipers are the most commonly affected species, although bagworms can attack arborvitae, spruce, pine and some broadleaf trees and shrubs.

Bagworm larvae will begin emerging any time now. Hatching does not happen overnight. Instead, hatching can continue for 4 to 5 weeks. When hatched, they will be very small and rather difficult to see. As they consume plant material, the larvae will become larger and larger and so will the new bags.

Many times, homeowners don’t begin worrying about bagworms until they are large and easy to see! At that point, chemical controls are a waste of time and money. Chemical control is most effective when larvae are in their early developmental stages. There are a number of insecticides that are effective against bagworms this time of year.

Trees are an investment! Don’t let disease or insect damage take hold. The Extension office is available to help you with any tree issues you may be facing. For assistance, please contact me at one of our Southwind Extension District office locations.

Krista Harding is a K-State Research and Extension Agricultural agent assigned to Southwind District.  She may be reached at [email protected] or 620-244-3826.


K-State Research and Extension is an equal opportunity provider and employer.


Estate Planning Informational Meeting set

Joy Miller. Submitted photo.

Southwind Extension District

Family and Consumer Sciences


Estate Planning Informational Meeting set


No matter how modest, everything you own is considered a part of your estate. Additionally, no matter how large or small your net worth is, everybody has something to pass on to their heirs.


An estate plan will help ensure that your wishes for your possessions are followed — especially when you are not around to give the direction. Without a plan, state law will provide the processes for your estate settlement, and your wishes may not be considered.


Join Joy Miller and Barbara Stockebrand, Southwind Extension Family and Consumer Sciences Agents for “Estate Planning: Beginning the Process” on May 19, 2022, at 6:00 p.m. at Bourbon County Fairgrounds 4-H Building in Fort Scott.


Learn estate planning terms, who should do estate planning and why, and some of the steps involved with estate planning.


Please register by calling 620-625-8620 or emailing [email protected]. There is no charge for this event.

Everyone is invited to attend.



Bo Co Commission Agenda for May 17

Bourbon County Commission Room

1st Floor, County Courthouse

210 S. National Avenue

Fort Scott, KS 66701

Tuesdays starting at 9:00

Date: May 17, 2022

1st DistrictLynne Oharah Minutes: Approved: _______________

2nd DistrictJim Harris Corrected: _______________________

3rd DistrictClifton Beth Adjourned at: _______________

County ClerkAshley Shelton


Call to Order

Flag Salute

Approval of Minutes from previous meeting

Jennifer Hawkins Permit Request

Justin Meeks County Counselor Comment

Susan Bancroft Chief Financial Officer Comment

Shane Walker Chief Information Officer Comment

Public Comment

Commission Comment

New Ladies Golf League Is Starting May 18

In 2021, Fort Scott newcomer Diane Striler brought up the topic of starting a ladies golf league with  Lindsay Madison, the Fort Scott Chamber of Commerce Executive Director.
A few weeks ago the idea moved forward with local interest shown.
It was then that Fort Scott Parks Director Doug Guns approached Madison about starting a league,  saying that recently several woman had inquired about a women’s league.
Woodland Hills Golf Course is owned by the City of Fort Scott.
“Lindsay introduced me to Doug and I started planning, ” Striler said.
 She will be coordinating a new ladies golf league in Fort Scott.
“The League will be called the Par Tee Girls,” she said.  “Our sign up will be May 18th at Woodland Hills Golf Course at 5:30 p.m.
That night we will pay our $40 league fee, take a picture for our website, get paired up with a partner (if you don’t already have someone to join with) and meet the other women of the league.”
The league will begin  on May 25 and play each Wednesday at 5:30 p.m. through August 10.
“On the last night, we will have our banquet with a best ball scramble, a catered dinner and a lot of fun! ” Stiler said.
“My main goal for coordinating the league is to bring together women off all ages and skill levels to play a great game,” she said. “I have told many women over the years that if you would like to play golf, you need to set the time aside to play on a regular basis so you have a chance to improve your game. The league is very casual, and a great opportunity to learn. Our only opponents are really ourselves.”
There is an opportunity to join a competitive group for those interested in challenging themselves more, she added.
“The nice aspect of the league is that women of all skill levels can play together,” she said. “I only ask that you play ready golf to keep the pace going.”
Striler is coordinating some lessons for those women that are learning or who would like to brush up on their game.
To contact Striler, phone 248-568-7790
“Joining a women’s league is a great opportunity to meet a lot great women, develop your game and friendships, and have a lot of fun in the meantime,” she said.  “I hope the women of Fort Scott and surrounding areas will join us!”
Striler coordinated a similar ladies league in the Kansas City area for 18 years, starting the league when her youngest daughter was 4 years old.  She started it looking for an excuse to meet with friends on a regular basis.


Here are the Par Tee Girls Information and Rules, provided by Striler:

“*Everyone has a partner.

*We will play from the red tees.

*Please play ready golf – hit when you can if another golfer is not ready.

*Take only 6 strokes before green.  If you are not on the green by the 6th shot,                                                

(5th on par 3s) pick up your ball and move to the green so you can count your putts.

*We will have one game each night.  The winner receives half the putt money.  The rest

will go toward the banquet.

*Turn in one scorecard with all 4 players on it. (I do not record everyone’s weekly score,

so if you want to keep track, you can fill out an extra card to keep)

*When scoring, write down your total score for the hole, and then the number of putts you have for the hole. 

Do the same for your total score

This way you can calculate what you need to add to the kitty.

*If you hit a ball out of bounds or into the water, drop a ball near where it went out, and take a one stroke penalty.

*Free lift – If your ball lands on a man-made pathway, sprinkler, etc., bring the ball out two club lengths back away from the hole.

*Keep up with the pace of play.  You should be able to complete a hole in less than 15 minutes. That way the tee times don’t get backed up.

*Most of all, relax, play with new people and have fun !!!”

About Striler

Diane Striler. Submitted photo.
Diane Colgan Striler is a realtor for Front Door Realty in Fort Scott.

She grew up in the Kansas City area and discovered Fort Scott around eight years ago when husband, Dean, and she were looking for a lake house. Friends had recently purchased a home at Lake Fort Scott and suggested that they come look.

The community has been very welcoming, she said, and the couple “fell in love with Fort Scott.”

Striler’s original plan was to fix up some houses and sell them because of a need for housing in the community. She enjoys working with  hand tools,  has a background in sales and a marketing degree.

She decided to get a real estate license.

After visiting with Jared Leek, owner of Front Door Realty, things fell into place.

“I started working as a realtor with Front Door Real Estate and we (she and Dean) purchased the Ren-nett Studio Building at 6 N. Main,” she said. She now has a Kansas and Missouri license.

She works to get unoccupied homes back on the market, she said.

“It ends up being a win win situation for everyone: back taxes get paid, the past owner is relieved of the burden and a new person finds a home,” she said.






Postai: CHC Expansion Impacts Fort Scott Positively

Community Health Center of Southeast Kansas is  proceeding with what will ultimately be a $10 million investment in their newly renovated building in Fort Scott that they are fully funding, according to Krista Postai, CEO and President.

The  renovation project is located at the former Price Chopper building at 2322 S. Main.

“We are on schedule to be in the new building in December as planned,” she said. “We did discover tunnels underneath the former grocery store that we weren’t expecting which came as quite the surprise, but are addressing the situation especially in those areas which will be supporting heavy equipment such as the CT Scanner and Mammography Unit.”

Renovation began Feb. 2022 on the future CHC/SEK Fort Scott Clinic in the former Price Chopper building on South Main Street.
The Price Chopper building, 2322 S. Main.

CHC currently is housed in a portion of the former Fort Scot Mercy Hospital on Woodland Hill Blvd. but their lease is up in December 2022.

Community Health Center of Southeast Kansas, 403 Woodland Hills Blvd.

Postai Provides Impact Studies

CHC/SEK and Fort Scott were featured in a national case study focusing on the transition of the Mercy Clinics to CHC/SEK, Postai said.

Postai attached the case findings plus the information compiled on the economic impact on the community, which were completed by Capital Link.  Capital Link is a national, non-profit organization that has worked with community health centers and
primary care associations for over 25 years to plan for sustainability and growth, access capital, articulate value and improve and optimize operations and financial management,  according to info in the study.

The current CHC project value to the community is shown to have both temporary impacts during construction and ongoing impacts from expanded operations including economic, employment and tax impacts.

To view the detailed study:

Capital Project Value Impact of Community Health Center of Southeast Kansas Fort Scott-1


The introduction to the case study:

“When Mercy Hospital Fort Scott (Mercy) closed its doors in Fort Scott, Kansas, after 132 years in operation, the rural community of 7,800 was left without a hospital. In the tumultuous aftermath of this closure, Community Health Center of Southeast Kansas (CHC/SEK or CHC), a Federally
Qualified Health Center based 30 miles away in Pittsburg, Kansas, stepped forward to take over two of the closed
hospital’s primary care clinics, providing a range of primary and preventive care services in Fort Scott, partially
filling the gap left by the hospital’s closure.
The circumstances leading up to the hospital’s closure and its impact on the community have been well-
documented by Sarah Jane Tribble in NPR’s nine-episode podcast, “Where it Hurts, Season 1: No Mercy.” This
case study focuses on CHC’s response to the closure and its efforts to restore access to primary care in Fort Scott,
while the community grieved the loss of its hospital.
Through interviews with CHC/SEK’s leadership, Capital Link explored CHC/SEK’s response to Mercy’s closure,
the subsequent impact on the community and the current state of the situation, in order to highlight lessons
learned for rural centers in similar situations.”

To view the entire case findings in detail:

CHC SEK Case Study – FINAL-1

Question on Property Taxes

The CHC building at 902 S. Horton will soon be the Fort Scott Community College Nursing Department. March 2023 is the scheduled transfer.

Recently on social media there was a comment that CHC had neglected paying property tax on their building at 902 Horton Street that currently houses some of their staff and a Veteran’s Administration local office.

Postai responded with the following:

“CHC/SEK is a non-profit 501(c)3 and, like the Mercy Health System, Ascension and most other healthcare organizations is exempt from property taxes,” Postai said. “Fort Scott Community College is also exempt, as is the Veterans Administration who currently occupies the Horton Street Building along with CHC/SEK staff.”

“Appropriate paperwork has been filed and is working its way through the system and we were advised by the county to hold payments pending final determination, which is what we’ve done.”

“We had actually mailed a check to the county for the taxes, who returned it to us because they anticipate our tax-exempt status will also apply to this building and they’d just have to refund our payment,” she said.

“In the meantime, we’re proceeding with what will ultimately be a $10 million investment in our newly renovated building (on Main Street) in Ft. Scott that CHC/SEK is fully funding itself.

“Any money from the sale of the Horton Street Building will be utilized toward the redo of the former Price Chopper building (on Main Street) which will also include classrooms for use by Fort Scott Community College at no cost to them.

“A portion of the funds will also be used for scholarships at FSCC.

“We will be in the new facility by the end of December and are looking forward to expanding services, recruiting additional professionals and serving all regardless of ability to pay. 

“I am always available to answer any questions and can be reached at 620-235-1867 or on my cell at 620-249-9936. My email is [email protected]. Krista Postai, CEO, CHC/SEK.