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County Manager's Office

Phone: 913-715-0725

111 S. Cherry St., Suite 3300, Olathe, KS 66061

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county manager's office

The County Manager's Office is responsible to the Board of County Commissioners and the residents of Johnson County for the effective and efficient delivery of programs and services, using sound management and financial principles while emphasizing high ethical values, innovation, and continuous improvement.

Department News

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All residents asked to help with watershed master plans
September 13, 2019

The area just recently observed the anniversary of the epic Plaza flood on Sept. 12, 1977. Flooding remains a challenge in the region, particularly with heavy seasonal rains in the spring and fall. Couple that with the explosive growth in construction, meaning lots of concrete, and stormwater and run-off swells the local creeks, flooding neighborhoods and businesses.

Johnson County’s Stormwater Management program is taking a new approach to an old problem. Instead of tackling flooding issues in separate municipalities, the program is looking at solving problems the way nature intended, on a watershed basis.

“Solving flooding problems where they occur isn’t always the best or most cost-effective approach,” said Lee Kellenberger, program manager of the Stormwater Management Program. “Sometimes the best solution to the problem is located upstream. Removing the municipal boundaries, and studying flooding problems though a watershed lens, will allow the county and the cities to work together to develop more comprehensive and cost-effective solutions.”

The masterplans will also identify potential solutions to address water quality impairments and aging infrastructure.

As a part of this plan, Johnson County invites all residents to help identify flooding and other stormwater-related concerns by completing this online mapping tool. While the survey will remain active until August 2020, information that is gathered will begin to be used immediately as the department begins to formulate masterplans for each of the county’s six watershed organizations.

Board of County Commissioners approves Solid Waste Management Plan
September 12, 2019

Every five years, the Johnson County Department of Health and Environment partners with the Solid Waste Management Committee to complete a solid waste management plan (SWMP) as required by Kansas law. This plan allows for the long-term management of solid waste in Johnson County, and insures adequate and sustainable options for dealing with waste. County officials sought feedback from residents, businesses and industry professionals as they developed this year’s plan.  

Highlights of the 2019 Solid Waste Management Plan include a focus on: expanding recycling to businesses and multi-family housing, reducing contamination in recycling through education efforts, and reducing food, construction and demolition waste. The 2019 plan also looks at the need for a new Household Hazardous Waste collection facility, and the potential to expand food waste composting operations within Johnson County.    

To better understand what Johnson County businesses and residents are throwing away, recycling and composting, the county conducts a waste study every few years. The most recent study, completed in 2015, showed a growing amount of food waste, plastics, and construction and demolition waste, and a decrease in yard waste and paper.

Innovations from previous Solid Waste Management Plans have led to a reduction in waste by expanding recycling to all single-family homes, implementing yard waste restrictions that greatly reduced the amount of yard waste going into the Johnson County landfill and developing a business assistance program. Through these efforts we have seen an increase in the diversion rate – the percentage of what is not going to the landfill – from 21% to 38%.

JoCo Veterans Treatment Court celebrates two graduates
September 12, 2019

On Wednesday, Sept. 11, two men graduated the Johnson County Veterans Treatment Court program, after successfully completing comprehensive mental health and/or substance abuse treatment, a series of court appearances, drug and alcohol testing, recovery support meetings and working closely with mentors who are also veterans.

One of the two graduates, Dwayne Gipson, former U.S. Marine, says the program and his mentor were instrumental in restoring his well-being.

“They make sure we are taken care of,” Gipson said. “I told my wife and other people, I accomplished more in the last 18 months than I probably did in the last 18 years. This program was definitely what I needed to get my act together, so it worked for me. I can’t speak for anyone else, but I really appreciate what they’re doing for veterans.”

The mission of the Veterans Treatment Court is to identify veterans in the criminal justice system and, when eligible, get them into treatment and court supervision as an alternative to incarceration. Veterans voluntarily participate in the 12 to 18-month program.

During Wednesday’s graduation ceremony, it was noted that there are approximately 400 Veterans Treatment Court programs across the country.

The other graduate of the program noted during his presentation at the event, “Fortunately, not all veterans need this program, but those that do, thank you for this program.”

Gipson encourages other veterans who are struggling to get help by reaching out to their local Veterans Administration or other services, such as Johnson County Mental Health, that provide support. Mental health emergency services are available by calling 913-268-0156, or the Veterans Crisis Line at 1-800-273-8255 (or text to 838255). 

 

World Suicide Prevention Day
September 10, 2019

Sept. 10 marks World Suicide Prevention Day. On Aug. 29, the Board of County Commissioners proclaimed Sept. 10 as Suicide Prevention Day in Johnson County. There are many resources available to those who need them. Please visit the Johnson County Mental Health resources page  or the National Alliance on Mental Illness. For immediate help, you can call the Johnson County Mental Health 24-hour Crisis Line — 913-268-0156 — a line answered by local mental health professionals who assess immediate needs.

Johnson County Mental Health has coasters and magnets available on suicide prevention. The details are on Facebook.com/JoCoMNH.

The #ZeroReasonsWhy campaign is just one of the may community efforts that has partnered with Johnson County Mental Health on suicide prevention. The group just celebrated the ribbon cutting for its space at Oak Park Mall. More information is available in this KCTV news story.

Finally, we ask that you remember two messages.

You are not alone.

Help is available.

Johnson County observes National Day of Service with volunteer opportunities
September 11, 2019

Wednesday, Sept. 11, is the 2019 National Day of Service and Remembrance, a federally-recognized day of unity and charitable service.

The 18th annual observance is asking American citizens and residents, locally and nationally, to volunteer in their communities, donate to charities or perform other good deeds in tribute to the individuals lost and injured in the 9/11/2001 terrorist attacks, first responders and the many who have risen in service to defend freedom since then.

Johnson County relies on volunteers in many ways to provide services and help residents with a wide range of opportunities. Volunteers for Human Services deliver Meals on Wheels to homebound residents and provide transportation to residents in need through Catch-a-Ride. Volunteers are always needed at Johnson County Library, Developmental Supports, Park & Recreation District, K-State Extension Office and other departments which provide public services, programs or activities.

In 2018, 14,624 volunteers provided almost 586,000 hours of community service throughout Johnson County.

Anyone who wishes to be a part of Johnson County Government’s volunteer programs should visit the “Residents” section of the county’s website at jocogov.org.

 

 

 

 

JoCo on the Go: Micro Transit
September 11, 2019

During our sixth JoCo on the Go podcast episode, we’re discussing a pilot project that is helping Johnson County residents get from point A to point B in a new convenient and affordable way. Micro Transit functions as part of the regional public transportation system known as Ride KC. This episode includes a conversation with Johnson County Government’s business liaison Josh Powers, who helped bring Micro Transit to the area. He talks about the success, thus far, of the pilot and where it’s going. You’ll also hear from Johnson County Board of County Commissioners Vice Chair Jim Allen, who serves on the Transportation Council, plus some microtransit users.  Learn how to get on board Micro Transit and any other Ride KC services.

JoCo on the Go is now available on Apple and Google Play. Just search for the podcast by name and subscribe. Learn more about this new podcast and get a complete transcript of each episode at jocogov.org/podcast.

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