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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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Johnson County receives recognition for infant safe sleep practices
November 25, 2019

The Johnson County Department of Health and Environment’s prenatal program recently received bronze-level Safe Sleep Star Certification from the Kansas Infant Death and SIDS (KIDS) Network. Johnson County is one of the first health departments in the state to receive this safety designation. In order to receive the bronze-level designation, an agency must provide annual safe sleep training to staff, create a safe sleep policy and make available take-home materials for the public regarding safe sleep practices for infants.

The Safe Sleep Star program was created by the KIDS Network, a Kansas-based organization dedicated to reducing the risk of infant deaths by providing supportive services, community education, professional training and supporting associated research. In addition to being KIDS partners, Johnson County was recognized for following the safe sleep guidelines recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics and providing training programs for caregivers, staff and the community.

Department of Health and Environment Child Care Facilities Specialist Kathy Griffin helped initiate the partnership and, as a KIDS Network Safe Sleep Instructor, provided training for staff.

“We have truly gone above and beyond to promote safe sleep practices for our clients,” Griffin said. “We do an assessment of expecting mothers, their understanding of safe sleep for their babies, and when they are in need of resources to ensure their babies are able to sleep safely in the home, we assist them with their needs.”

In some circumstances, fitted sheets, sleep sacks and cribettes have been provided to new and expectant mothers. Social workers in the prenatal clinic meet with their clients and determine whether there is a safe sleep environment in the home for the baby. Clients may be referred to a crib clinic that Griffin offers on a monthly basis.

“We are proud to be recognized for our work to support families,” Griffin said. “If we can prevent even one child death in our community by urging safe sleep practices for our youngest and most precious Johnson County residents, it is well worth the effort.”

The Safe Sleep Star program was developed in collaboration with maternal infant health partners, and partially founded by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment. For more information about the program, visit kidsks.org. To learn more about safe sleep services in Johnson County, contact Kathy Griffin at 913-477-8381.

Sheriff's Office supports WIC clients with diaper drive
February 21, 2019

On Feb. 4 and 5, Johnson County Sheriff’s Office Public Information Officers Paul Nonnast and Rick Howell delivered 30 boxes of diapers to the Olathe and Mission WIC offices as part of a special diaper drive initiated by the Sheriff’s Office.

A few weeks earlier, after presenting a workplace safety training at the Mental Health Center, Nonnast and Howell stopped by the WIC office to ask the staff what their greatest needs were at the time. The Sheriff’s Office had already signed up to participate in a drive for Giving the Basics, a Kansas City area nonprofit that collects hygiene items throughout the metro, but they felt they could do more for organizations within county government.

Olathe WIC Site Supervisor Carol Winters informed them that many families with newborns and toddlers who seek services do not have the proper number of diapers, because WIC funds can only be used to purchase food, not toiletries or household items. According to Winters, WIC staff often provide diapers for clients out of their own pockets. Nonnast and Howell felt this was a need they could meet through a diaper drive.

In partnership with the Johnson County Kiwanis Club, who also wanted to address the shortage, the Sheriff’s Office organized a diaper drive and was able to collect 30 boxes of diapers over a two-week period. Nonnast and Howell delivered the diapers to WIC locations in both Mission and Olathe, where they will be distributed to families across Johnson County who participate in the WIC program and express a need for more than food assistance.

New Lenexa City Center Library opening in June
February 20, 2019

The new Lenexa City Center Library will open its doors to the public with a grand opening event from 1  to 5 p.m. on Sunday, June 2.

During the ribbon cutting, public officials will address attendees, and Emerita Poet Laureate of Kansas, Wyatt Townley, will recite a work commissioned for the occasion.

Library staff will conduct tours of the new building, and attendees will have an opportunity to meet Stephen T. Johnson, an award-winning children’s book illustrator who is installing a new work of public art at the site.

The event takes place during what will be regular Sunday service hours at the library. Lenexa City Center will be the sixth Johnson County Library branch open on Sundays.

Ken Werne, Lenexa City Center Library manager, is looking forward to the grand opening.

"It will be fun and exciting to open a new building, a larger building with services new to the Lenexa area," Werne said.

Werne is developing a new team for the library, and he's looking forward to partnering with the city of Lenexa and others as Lenexa City Center continues to grow and develop.

He said the library will serve a large population, many of whom are within walking distance of the library. The library will also serve other nearby patrons.

The new 40,000-square-foot building occupies two floors. In addition to high-quality library services, the new space features:

  • Public meeting rooms
  • Public computers
  • A robust children’s programming area

Construction cost is $21.1 million.

Johnson County reporting flu cases, not too late for flu shot
February 20, 2019

Influenza A is hitting Johnson County residents hard this flu season, much like the rest of Kansas. As of today, Feb. 15, 1,743 cases of influenza have been voluntarily reported to the Johnson County Department of Health and Environment (JCDHE), with 85 percent attributed to Flu A. The number of cases is still substantially lower than this time last year, when close to 5,000 cases had been reported. This season, there has been one death in Johnson County directly linked to influenza. Influenza season generally runs October through March, with the season peaking at the end of January into February.

Health Services Director Nancy Tausz says although we are well into the flu season, it’s not too late to get a flu shot. The flu season can linger into May.

“If you haven’t gotten your flu shot, please come here to either of our clinic sites in Olathe or Mission or your health care provider,” Tausz said. “Even if you get ill, you shouldn’t be as ill as if you didn’t get the flu shot.”

You can also avoid getting the flu by washing your hands often, and avoiding contact with those who have the flu. Disinfecting door handles, television remotes, toys and other surfaces where germs can linger, will help you avoid getting sick.

Health experts say there is a distinction between a cold and flu.

“The flu hits pretty quickly, usually with a high fever and maybe 101-102, and you just feel achy, fatigued; people complain about a really terrific headache,” Tausz said. “With a cold, it’s more gradual and you might have a fever, you might not. If you have the flu, you’ll know it, because it comes on real suddenly.”

If you do come down with the flu, your health care provider may prescribe anti-viral medications.

“If you can start that within 48 hours, that usually helps tremendously,” Tausz said.

You should stay home from work and school to keep others from catching the flu. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, most healthy adults with influenza are infectious beginning one day before symptoms develop and up to seven days after becoming sick. Johnson County Health Officer, Dr. Joseph LeMaster, supports the Kansas Department of Health and Environment’s (KDHE’s) recommendation to stay home from school and child care for seven days, if you receive a diagnosis of influenza from a physician. 

Last spring KDHE updated its isolation quarantine regulations. Disease-specific isolation and quarantine requirements can be found in this document

More information about the 2018-19 flu season is available here. Hear from Health Services Director Nancy Tausz.

Public Works staff member recognized for increasing efficiency
July 19, 2019

Jeremey Biles was recognized Tuesday, Feb. 14, at the Board of County Commissioners meeting. The Public Works maintenance worker received a Leadership in Action Award after identifying a lack of efficiency in a shoulder-rocking process. He did some research and recommended a piece of equipment that has now quadrupled his team's productivity. Learn more about Biles' efforts to demonstrate the county's Pillars of Performance

Road closure at JoCo's Sunset campus, Feb. 18-22, detour available
February 13, 2019

As progress is made on the construction of the Medical Examiner Facility, on the Johnson County Sunset Drive campus, in Olathe, a road closure is necessary to extend water and sewer lines. The road closure affects the west entrance to the Health Services Building, and the north and south portions of the Sunset Drive, at 118th and 119th. The road will be closed beginning Monday, Feb. 18, and will reopen Saturday, Feb. 23, depending on weather conditions.

Signs to announce the upcoming road closure and the detour were placed in the area on Feb. 12.

All facilities on the campus are accessible through an alternate route identified by detour signs. There will be no closures on 118th, so neighboring residences should not be impacted. The Sunset campus includes Johnson County Health and Environment, Evergreen Community of Johnson County, the K-State Research and Extension Office, Wastewater, Human Services, Appraiser’s Office, Emergency Communications, MED-ACT and Johnson County Forensic Science and Communications.