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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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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.

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Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) Training – responding to a mental health crisis
October 4, 2019

This week, law enforcement officers, dispatchers and mental health professionals are involved in 40 hour Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) training. CIT is a collaboration designed to improve the way law enforcement and community partners respond to people experiencing mental health crises.

This training equips attendees through educational presentations, verbal de-escalation simulation and a panel of clients and family members who speak from their personal experiences. CIT-trained officers respond to a scene involving a mental health concern to provide the right response at the right time. The goal is to keep everyone safe and prevent incarceration, which could make matters worse for someone in crisis.  

Recently, Johnson County released a JoCo on the Go podcast about the Crisis Intervention Team. Listen to the podcast online and hear from an officer who is helping to implement CIT training, a county commissioner who supports the effort, and a resident who appreciates the sensitive response to her loved one. 

Johnson County celebrates big energy wins on Energy Efficiency Day
October 2, 2019

Last week, the Board of County Commissioners joined city and county governments around the nation in declaring October 2 as Energy Efficiency Day. The goal of the annual awareness event is to promote the benefits of energy efficiency, from lower costs to healthier air.

Johnson County Government has made significant strides in improving its energy efficiency in recent years, finding ways to reduce energy consumption by 13% even as county operations have grown at pace with increasing population. According to Brian Alferman, sustainability program manager for Johnson County Government, this reduction in usage has resulted in a net savings of about $1.5 million. The county is also in the process of hiring a full-time Energy Manager to build on recent success and improve the energy conservation program. Interested in learning more about this job opportunity? Watch jocogov.org/careers for the posting in the next few weeks.

Energy efficiency is not just for large organizations – individuals can do a lot to improve efficiency at home to save money and reduce emissions. Here are a few things to try:

  • Adjust your thermostat – for every degree you lower your thermostat, you save about 2% on your heating bill.
  • Change your furnace air filter regularly.
  • Wash clothes in cold water only.
  • Caulk and weatherstrip around windows and doors to reduce air leakage.
  • Replace lightbulbs with LEDs.

To learn more about the county’s recent efforts to improve sustainability and efficiency, check out the Fall 2019 issue of JoCo Magazine – coming to your mailbox in mid-October!

Changing the landscape of the juvenile justice system
October 3, 2019

More than 125 key community stakeholders met on Tuesday, Oct. 1, for the Johnson County Juvenile Cross-System Collaboration Summit. The event included the outcomes of collaborative work by more than 50 organizations across six different systems that intersect with juveniles and their caregivers: healthcare, community, school, child welfare, juvenile court and juvenile justice.

Action teams composed of representatives from these systems have worked on long-term projects for the past year to change the landscape of the juvenile system locally, regionally and across the state.

One of the highlights of the summit was the emphasis on data-sharing and interagency collaboration. Johnson County Department of Health and Environment (DHE) Epidemiologist Elizabeth Holzschuh presented on a partnership between her department and the Shawnee Mission School District (SMSD). The two organizations collaborated around data, allowing them to assess community-level trauma factors for each school in the district’s geographic boundaries.

The data that were analyzed fell into three categories: economic, safety and community trauma. The project is in the preliminary stages, but it has already allowed SMSD to identify some communities that have a significantly higher rate of traumatizing events than other areas of the district and consider what resources can be allocated in response.

“Public health problems don’t require public health solutions. Criminal justice problems don’t require criminal justice solutions,” explained Holzschuh. “They require all of us to come around the table to come up with solutions together.”

Other findings presented today included interagency partnerships between school districts, law enforcement, mental health, faith organizations, healthcare, childcare facilities and public health.

“The more organizations that partner on data sharing, the better,” said Deputy County Manager Maury Thompson. “The more data we’re able to share between schools, health care, mental health, criminal justice and other community partners, the more effectively we’ll be able to predict risk, find gaps in service and make data-informed decisions on solutions to better serve our community.”

The Summit attendees provided follow-up steps from the findings and commitment for future work on behalf of juveniles and their caregivers. The core leadership team of the Johnson County Juvenile Cross-System Collaboration will review those recommendations and determine the next steps for the Collaboration in the coming days.

The Johnson County Juvenile Cross-System Collaboration was convened by Johnson County Mental Health Center, funded by Reach Healthcare Foundation and facilitated by Team Tech. Kansas State Senator Dinah Sykes, Kansas State Representatives Megan Lynn, Nancy Lusk and Jarrod Ousley, as well as Johnson County Community College Trustee Nancy Ingram were in attendance. Ingram also serves on the Johnson County Mental Health Center Advisory Board.


New census office opens in Overland Park
October 29, 2019

The U.S. Census Bureau opened a new area census office in Overland Park on Oct. 1, exactly six months from the official kickoff of the 2020 Census in April 1.

An audience of local, state and federal officials/stakeholders with an interest in the census were joined by members of the public and the media for comments and a look at the new office, located at 7700 W. 119th St. in Overland Park. According to a U.S. Census Bureau media advisory, “the office will serve as the operational hub for the Constitutionally mandated decennial census and will begin hiring thousands of staff across Kansas in the next several months.”

Speakers at the event included Kansas Governor Laura Kelly, U.S. Census Deputy Regional Director Dennis Johnson and Aude Negrete, executive director of the Kansas Hispanic and Latino American Affairs Commission.

 “In 2016, more than $6 billion in federal funds came to Kansas through 55 different programs, based on census data. A complete count is critical; Kansans can’t afford to be shortchanged,” said Governor Kelly.

Dennis Johnson discussed the need to recruit 20,000 census workers in Kansas, including nearly 10,000 in Northeast Kansas. Information about being a census worker, along with an application, is available at 2020census.gov/jobs.

Kansas Hispanic and Latino American Affairs Commission executive director Aude Negrete spoke about the fact that information gathered during the U.S. Census is protected and confidential and can’t be used against a participant.

The event included the posting of colors by the We-Ta-Se American Legion Post 410 from Mayetta, Kan. and an invocation by Pastor Cheryl Bell, Church of the Resurrection in Leawood. Guests toured the space, enjoyed refreshments and signed a census map serving as a guest book.

You can learn more about the census at CountMeInJoCo.org.

Johnson County DA hosts documentary screening and discussion
October 1, 2019

The public is invited to the screening of Roll Red Roll, a documentary about sexual assault and a community’s response.

The documentary screening, co-hosted by COMVAC and the Johnson County Attorney’s Victim Assistance Unit, tells the story of sexual assault allegations involving a young woman and a high school football team.

“The documentary will play an important part as we take a serious look at violence prevention efforts in Johnson County,” said Brian Porch, with the Victim Assistance Unit.

Doors open for the screening at 5:30 p.m., on Wednesday, Oct. 2, at Yardley Hall, Carlsen Center, on the Johnson County Community College campus. The documentary will begin at 6 p.m., followed by a panel discussion and questions and answers with community leaders.

Parents, educators, district administrators, coaches, students, law enforcement and those interested in promoting the health and well-being of young people in the community are encouraged to attend. No registration required. Those with disabilities are with limited English proficiency are also encouraged to attend. You may request reasonable accommodations by contacting Brian Porch at 913-715-3016, or by email at brian.porch@jocgov.org.

JoCo on the Go: Cyber security, staying safe
October 2, 2019

During our ninth JoCo on the Go podcast episode, we’re talking about the latest scams and tactics criminals are using on the internet and through phones to capture people’s confidential information. Johnson County information technology experts Bill Nixon and Donna Gomez share tips and details on an upcoming event to help the public stay up-to-date on cyber security. Geoff Jenista, of Homeland Security, also shares advice on password protection and what parents should know about children’s access to the internet.  

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 podcast and get a complete transcript of each episode at jocogov.org/podcast.