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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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BOCC will not meet, offices closed for holiday
July 3, 2019

The Johnson County Board of County Commissioners will not meet for their regular meeting Thursday, July 4, due to the holiday. Johnson County offices will also be closed in observance of the Fourth of July. Critical services will continue to be provided.

Have a happy and safe Independence Day.

Johnson County - a Community Supporting Breastfeeding
July 2, 2019

The Kansas Breastfeeding Coalition (KBC) officially designates Johnson County as a “Community Supporting Breastfeeding.” This designation recognizes communities that provide multifaceted breastfeeding support across several sectors: businesses, employers, hospitals, child care providers and peer support.

The county’s coalition is building a culture of breastfeeding support in Johnson County with fewer barriers to breastfeeding and increased opportunities for support. The Johnson County Department of Health and Environment began this community coalition and Danica Pelzel, WIC staff member, currently serves as a co-chair.

Johnson County’s Breastfeeding Coalition’s community awareness project is also one of six local coalitions that received funding totaling approximately $5,000 from the KBC Mini-Grant Initiative.  

Want to know what Johnson County’s community involvement looks like?  View this spreadsheet summarizing Breastfeeding Support by Kansas County, a detailed database of information regarding breastfeeding support and breastfeeding rates by county.

How to stay safe in the heat
September 9, 2019

Summer is here in Johnson County. The Johnson County Department of Health and Environment, in cooperation with the Johnson County Library, encourages citizens who need a place to cool down during hot days to visit one of 13 library branches. All of these facilities are available during normal business hours. Visit jocolibrary.com for hours of operation.

Here is some information for recognizing heat-related illnesses and tips for managing the heat.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) About Extreme Heat from CDC:

What happens to the body as a result of exposure to extreme heat?

People suffer heat-related illness when the body’s temperature control system is overloaded. The body normally cools itself by sweating. But under some conditions, sweating just isn’t enough. In such cases, a person’s body temperature rises rapidly. Very high body temperatures may damage the brain or other vital organs. Several factors affect the body’s ability to cool itself during extremely hot weather. When the humidity is high, sweat will not evaporate as quickly, preventing the body from releasing heat quickly. Other conditions that can limit the ability to regulate temperature include old age, youth (age 0-4), obesity, fever, dehydration, heart disease, mental illness, poor circulation, sunburn, and prescription drug use and alcohol use.

Who is at greatest risk for heat-related illness?

Those at greatest risk for heat-related illness include infants and children up to four years of age, people 65 years of age and older, people who are overweight, and people who are ill or on certain medications.

What is heat stroke?

Heat stroke is the most serious heat-related illness. It occurs when the body becomes unable to control its temperature: the body’s temperature rises rapidly, the sweating mechanism fails, and the body is unable to cool down. Body temperature may rise to 106°F or higher within 10 to 15 minutes. Heat stroke can cause death or permanent disability if emergency treatment is not provided.

What are the warning signs of a heat stroke?

Warning signs of heat stroke vary but may include the following:

  • An extremely high body temperature (above 103°F)
  • Red, hot, and dry skin (no sweating)
  • Rapid, strong pulse
  • Throbbing headache
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Confusion
  • Unconsciousness

What should I do if I see someone with any of the warning signs of heat stroke?

If you see any of these signs, you may be dealing with a life-threatening emergency. Have someone call for immediate medical assistance while you begin cooling the victim. Do the following:

  • Get the victim to a shady area.
  • Cool the victim rapidly, using whatever methods you can. For example, immerse the victim in a tub of cool water; place the person in a cool shower; spray the victim with cool water from a garden hose; sponge the person with cool water; or if the humidity is low, wrap the victim in a cool, wet sheet and fan him or her vigorously. 
  • Monitor body temperature and continue cooling efforts until the body temperature drops to 101-102°F.
  • If emergency medical personnel are delayed, call the hospital emergency room for further instructions.
  • Do not give the victim alcohol to drink.
  • Get medical assistance as soon as possible.

What is heat exhaustion?

Heat exhaustion is a milder form of heat-related illness that can develop after several days of exposure to high temperatures and inadequate or unbalanced replacement of fluids. Those most prone to heat exhaustion are elderly people, those with high blood pressure, and those working or exercising in a hot environment.

What are the warning signs of heat exhaustion?

The warning signs of heat exhaustion include the following:

  • Heavy sweating
  • Paleness
  • Muscle cramps
  • Tiredness
  • Weakness
  • Dizziness
  • Headache 
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Fainting

The skin may be cool and moist. The pulse rate will be fast and weak, and breathing will be fast and shallow. If heat exhaustion is untreated, it may progress to heat stroke. See medical attention if symptoms worsen or last longer than one hour.

What steps can be taken to cool the body during heat exhaustion? 

  • Drink cool, nonalcoholic beverages.
  • Rest.
  • Take a cool shower, bath, or sponge bath.
  • Seek an air-conditioned environment.
  • Wear lightweight clothing.

What are heat cramps and who is affected?

Heat cramps are muscle pains or spasms – usually in the abdomen, arms, or legs – that may occur in association with strenuous activity. People who sweat a lot during strenuous activity are prone to heat cramps. This sweating depletes the body’s salt and moisture. The low salt level in the muscles causes painful cramps. Heat cramps may also be a symptom of heat exhaustion. If you have heart problems or are on a low-sodium diet, seek medical attention for heat cramps.

What should I do if I have heat cramps?

If medical attention is not necessary, take the following steps:

  • Stop all activity and sit quietly in a cool place.
  • Drink clear juice or a sports beverage.
  • Do not return to strenuous activity for a few hours after the cramps subside because further exertion may lead to heat exhaustion or heat stroke.
  • Seek medical attention for heat cramps if they do not subside in 1 hour.

What is heat rash?

Heat rash is a skin irritation caused by excessive sweating during hot, humid weather. It can occur at any age but is most common in young children. Heat rash looks like a red cluster of pimples or small blisters. It is more likely to occur on the neck and upper chest, in the groin, under the breasts, and in elbow creases.

What is the best treatment for heat rash?

The best treatment for heat rash is to provide a cooler, less humid environment. Keep the affected area dry. Dusting powder may be used to increase comfort.

Can medications increase the risk of heat-related illness?

The risk for heat-related illness and death may increase among people using the following drugs: (1) psychotropics, which affect psychic function, behavior, or experience (e.g. haloperidol or chlorpromazine); (2) medications for Parkinson’s disease, because they can inhibit perspiration; (3) tranquilizers such as phenothiazines, butyrophenones, and thioxanthenes; and (4) diuretic medications or "water pills" that affect fluid balance in the body.

How effective are electric fans in preventing heat-related illness?

Electric fans may provide comfort, but when the temperature is in the high 90s, fans will not prevent heat-related illness. Taking a cool shower or bath or moving to an air-conditioned place is a much better way to cool off. Air conditioning is the strongest protective factor against heat-related illness. Exposure to air conditioning for even a few hours a day will reduce the risk for heat-related illness. Consider visiting a shopping mall or public library for a few hours.

How can people protect their health when temperatures are extremely high?

Remember to keep cool and use common sense. Drink plenty of fluid, replace salts and minerals, wear appropriate clothing and sunscreen, pace yourself, stay cool indoors, schedule outdoor activities carefully, use a buddy system, monitor those at risk, and adjust to the environment.

How much should I drink during hot weather?

During hot weather you will need to drink more liquid than your thirst indicates. Increase your fluid intake, regardless of your activity level. During heavy exercise in a hot environment, drink two to four glasses (16-32 ounces) of cool fluids each hour. Avoid drinks containing alcohol because they will actually cause you to lose more fluid.

Should I take salt tablets during hot weather?

Do not take salt tablets unless directed by your doctor. Heavy sweating removes salt and minerals from the body. These are necessary for your body and must be replaced. The easiest and safest way to do this is through your diet. Drink fruit juice or a sports beverage when you exercise or work in the heat.

What is the best clothing for hot weather or a heat wave?

Wear as little clothing as possible when you are at home. Choose lightweight, light-colored, loose-fitting clothing. In the hot sun, a wide-brimmed hat will provide shade and keep the head cool. If you must go outdoors, be sure to apply sunscreen 30 minutes prior to going out and continue to reapply according to the package directions. Sunburn affects your body’s ability to cool itself and causes a loss of body fluids. It also causes pain and damages the skin.

What should I do if I work in a hot environment?

Pace yourself. If you are not accustomed to working or exercising in a hot environment, start slowly and pick up the pace gradually. If exertion in the heat makes your heart pound and leaves you gasping for breath, STOP all activity. Get into a cool area or at least in the shade, and rest, especially if you become lightheaded, confused, weak, or faint.

Check out new aerial imagery of Johnson County
June 28, 2019

Aerial imagery of Johnson County on the Johnson County Online Mapping application just got clearer.

New 3-inch imagery was captured in March 2019 in conjunction with an existing project that produced a much clearer image than in years past. This product also starts the cycle of providing a new set of imagery every year compared to every other year.

You can use the online mapping application to:

  • Create your own plot plan.
  • View current and historic aerial photos of a property.
  • Search for property owner information.
  • View hundreds of other geographic layers.

The application is a service of AIMS,  Automated Information Mapping System. AIMS is a division of the Department of Technology and Innovation within Johnson County government. AIMS offers the application as a service to the Johnson County community to help promote e-government.

If you need assistance with the mapping application, visit AIMS’ YouTube channel. AIMS’ videos provide an introduction into the navigation and functionality.

AIMS also offers free instructor-led classes to the public. Instructors help users become more proficient with Johnson County Online Mapping. Check out the schedule of upcoming classes and register online today.

The Best Times showcases an American dream through naturalization
June 27, 2019

The July-August issue of The Best Times magazine is on its way in the mail with a cover story featuring the naturalization of a local elderly immigrant from India, fulfilling his dream to become an American citizen. Two Johnson County departments, other community partners and a U.S. senator helped him and his Overland Park family in that effort.

His name is Hasmukhlal Malkan, but everyone fondly called him Dada. A video about his bittersweet naturalization is viewable here.

Other articles in the next issue of The Best Times include:

  • Events/activities as Johnson County officially opens Meadowbrook Park, dedicates an inclusive playground in Shawnee Mission Park, schedules three more productions at the Theatre in the Park, prepares for the annual Johnson County Fair and celebrates Independence Day.
  • Volunteer opportunities through the Catch-a-Ride program, which is celebrating its 20th year; the Meals on Wheels program and Johnson County Developmental Supports.
  • Classes and programs to have fun with mastering card skills in playing bridge or participate in a Hand and Foot Tournament; to be physically active with yoga and Tai Chi exercises; and to travel with day trips this summer to nearby states.
  • A chapter in Johnson County history when a popular judge attracted hundreds of couples wanting to become newlyweds.
  • And, the FY 2020 Budget heads into the home stretch with final approval in August.

 

Watch for ozone alerts as summer heats up
June 25, 2019

As hot summer days become the norm in the coming weeks, you may begin to hear about “ozone alerts” on the news or see it posted on KC Scout signs on the interstate. What is an ozone alert and what should residents do to protect themselves?

What is ozone?
Ozone is a chemical gas that is both naturally occurring and a man-made byproduct of modern life. You’ve probably heard of the ozone layer in the atmosphere, where ozone reduces the amount of harmful UV radiation that reaches the Earth’s surface. However, ozone can also be produced at the Earth’s surface, where it contributes to what we experience as “smog.”

At high enough levels, ozone can affect the quality of the air we breathe. An ozone alert day occurs when ozone levels become high enough to make breathing difficult for vulnerable populations. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has established health standards for ozone in order to protect human health.

Ozone is the only one of the main air pollutants that is not exhausted from a tailpipe or a smokestack. Certain chemicals, such as those in gasoline, oil-based paints or printing inks, are released to the atmosphere from their sources. These chemicals drift with the wind, react with heat and sunlight and are converted to ozone. Consequently, these chemicals may be released in Johnson County and become ozone by the time they reach downtown Kansas City or KCI.

The most likely occurrence of ozone formation is hot, sunny summer days with little to no wind, making ozone alerts far more common in the summer months. The official “ozone season” for Kansas City is March 1 through Oct. 31, but ozone alerts most often occur from June through August.

Poor air quality may be most noticed by the elderly, children, and people with lung and heart problems that can cause difficulty breathing. On ozone alert days, it is recommended that these vulnerable groups avoid strenuous outdoor activities and stay indoors as much as possible. If being outside is unavoidable, try to schedule activities before 11 a.m. or after 8 p.m.

You can help improve our air quality
The good news is that we can all do our part to reduce ozone in the summer, by small yet significant modifications to our behavior. These modifications do not cost you any money, just a personal change.  Throughout the summer months, and especially on ozone days, try these strategies to help reduce ground-level ozone in our community:

  • Drive less. Carpool, bike, walk or take public transit to work. At work, try teleconferencing instead of driving to meetings or carpool to lunch.
  • Avoid fueling on ozone alert days – simply filling your vehicle with gasoline can lead to pollution as fumes escape and react with sunlight to form ozone. If you must fill up, try to do so after dusk. And never top off your tank! Doing so forces fumes into the air.  
  • Mow later in the day. Lawn and garden equipment alone is responsible for an estimated 9% of the Kansas City metro’s ozone-forming emissions. Avoid yard work that involves power equipment until the ozone alert is over.

This summer, keep the air quality in mind when you plan your activities for hot summer days. Stay safe and do your part to keep our air clean for all residents to enjoy!

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