Pottawatomie County property sales steady

By The Mercury

Property sales in Pottawatomie County are more than holding their own,” Appraiser Lois Schlegel told county commissioners Monday.

There were 49 property sales in April, bringing the yearly total to 175, Schlegel said.

“That’s down a little from last month, but so far this year we’re ahead of the game,” Schlegel said. “That’s a pretty good number, and we’re at least headed in the right direction.”

At the current pace, Pott County property sales are 46 ahead of last year, 24 ahead of 2010, and 27 ahead of 2009.

The 49 property sales in April included 26 residential, two commercial, 12 vacant lots, and nine ag land or farmsteads.

At Schlegel’s request, the commission also approved the annual contract of Devin Sprecker, Topeka, with whom the county contracts for commercial appraisal work.

“He’s a very good appraiser for the big box stores and things like that,” Schlegel said.

Sprecker works for the county about 10 or 12 days annually, at a cost of $650 per day.

In other business Monday:

• Rush Creek Construction, Beatrice, Neb., submitted the lowest of three bids for a bank stabilization project along Timber Creek.

Rush Creek’s bid of $711,684 was still well above the engineer’s estimate of $560,000, and the county will have to consult with the Kansas Department of Health and Environment before proceeding.

The county had received a KDHE grant to pay for 75 percent of the project, which received no bids when it was first advertised several weeks ago.

• Dustin Trego, management assistant of operations, updated the commission on transportation issues.

County mini-buses made 975 trips in April, driving 3,997 miles and transporting 252 passengers.

While the Kansas Department of Transportation encourages a set fee for riding the mini-bus, Pott County does not charge, but has a suggested donation.

“Most of our ridership that is consistent, they pay and they pay every time,” Trego said.

Trego is also meeting with representatives from surrounding communities regarding a proposed regional transportation service.

• Chris Trudo, emergency management director, reported on the cleanup of a fuel spill from a tanker truck which overturned the morning of April 28, on the Onaga Road, south of LaClede.

A private contractor was used to excavate and replace the contaminated soil, Trudo said, noting that this was the sixth or seventh semi which has overturned in the county in the past six months.

• The commission approved the final plat for Oak Point Estates, south of U.S. Highway 24 near Appleyard Road.

• Buck Driggs, SMH Consultants, gave a weekly progress update on the new Pott County Justice Center north of the courthouse at Westmoreland.

Construction crews are “in full dig and grading mode” and preparing to pour concrete footings within a week or so, Driggs said. He also expects the drilling of geothermal wells to begin soon.

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