One day after the Franklin County Commission spent most of their morning in executive session, finally emerging to unanimously vote to discipline an employee, County Administrator Jon Holmes has announced his resignation.
Throughout the executive sessions, Holmes could be seen in the hallway with a man he identified as his personal attorney. Periodically, County Counselor Derek Brown would emerge from the session to briefly huddle with Holmes, before returning to the closed session. However, the Commissioners would not identify the disciplined individual, or the surrounding circumstances, stating it was a personnel issue.
No reason has been given for Holmes’ resignation.
Friday, Sept. 30, 10:00 AM
WELLSVILLE–The Welllsville Cemetery is apparently suffering from a lack of care…and several people have complained that it needs to be maintained better. City officials vow to do better and keep it to a standard people expect.
Wed. Sept. 28 10:30 pm
OTTAWA — Following a series of marathon executive sessions for what they called personnel issues lasting most of this morning, Franklin County commissioners voted unanimously to discipline a non-elected county employee. During the closed sessions, commissioners conferred with county counselor Derek Brown. Commissioner Steve Harris, who rarely attends meetings because of new employment, attended this morning’s meeting. For most of the morning, during the executive sessions, county administrator Jon Holmes sat outside with an Olathe man he called his private attorney. In between sessions, Brown huddled with Holmes and his attorney and then return to closed session with commissioners. At one point during the final closed session, called in Nick Robbins, Franklin County EMS director, behind closed doors. Following the vote, commission chair Rick Howard declined to say who was being disciplined, what the issue was or what the penalty entailed. He called it a personnel matter. Holmes also declined to comment.
Wednesday, Sept. 28, 2 p.m.
OTTAWA–The new elementary school at 19th and Eisenhower has a name…Sunflower Elementary. The name was approved by the School Board at its regular meeting.
Monday, Sep. 26, 10 pm
POMONA — A 29-year-old Kansas City man is dead following a police pursuit that ended with a crash inside the Pomona city limits early this morning. K-68 is closed while investigators work at the crash scene, Franklin County Sheriff Jeff Richards said. Traffic is being detoured until the highway is reopened later, he said. The chase began this morning at 1 when Quenemo police tried to pull over a vehicle and the driver fled. The vehicle went east on K-68 and raced into Franklin County. Deputies from Osage and Franklin counties were also involved. The man was thrown out when the vehicle crashed in Pomona, Richards said. Richards wouldn’t identify the man. The man was one of three people in the vehicle. The other two were arrested at the scene, he said. The crash is being investigated by the Kansas Highway Patrol CHART team.
Thursday, Sept. 22, 7 a.m.
OTTAWA — An innovative reading program is taking place at the Ottawa Public Library. The program, which is part of Therapy Dogs International, allows young children learning to read to spend 20 minutes a week reading out loud to a pair of Doberman Pinschers, both registered with the therapy dogs association. Children can come in, read to the dogs, and build a special relationship with them, said Cyndi Brewer, library youth services manager. Children are less likely to feel nervous about reading to a dog than to their peers or an adult, which can make learning to read a less stressful experience for them, she said. Registration for next month’s program session will begin on-line next week. It is currently limited to four children per session.
Wednesday, Sept. 21, 6 a.m.
TOPEKA — The community health center that serves Franklin County will be among 16 health centers that will share nearly $1 million total in federal grants to improve their computer networks. The Health Partnership Clinic of Johnson County will receive $78,589, the Kansas Health Institute News Service reported. The clinic’s local satellite office is in the Franklin County Health Department at the county annex. The U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services says the IT upgrades will deliver better care by letting providers quickly sort through a patient’s electronic health records and allow hospitals, primary care doctors and specialists to communicate seamlessly. Neighboring clinics also receiving grants include the Flint Hills Community Health Center, Emporia, $52,743; and the Heartland Medical Clinic, Lawrence, $44,789.
Wednesday, Sept. 21, 6 a.m.
LYNDON — People who used the Cotton O’Neil Medical Clinic in Lyndon can only use it a few more months. Stormont-Vail Health, of Topeka, has announced the clinic will close Jan. 31. Randy Pearson, Stormont Vail president and CEO, blamed the state’s 4 percent Medicaid cuts and the state’s failure to expand Medicaid as the main factors in closing the clinic. Patients will receive a letter explaining how to get services at other clinics.
Wednesday, Sept. 21, 5 a.m.
OTTAWA — The Ottawa Police Department will join other law enforcement agencies in Kansas and five other central states this weekend for a crackdown on speeding and other traffic violations. Law enforcement across the six-state area will be extra-vigilant when patrolling around city, rural, state and federal highways. As speeds increase, the severity of crashes increases and there are more severe injuries and possibly deaths, Police Chief Dennis Butler said. “Even one death is unacceptable,” Butler said. “Please slow down, put the phone away or turn it off, and always buckle up.”
Wednesday, Sept. 21, 5 a.m.
OTTAWA – The Ottawa woman who was injured when a truck drove through the window of the Dollar Tree store, at 23rd and Main, last week has been released from Ransom Memorial Hospital. Ayda Gerges was pinned by the truck against a display, police said. Gerges said she had just checked out and was talking with the cashier when she heard a loud noise, then found herself unable to move. She was pinned for about five minutes until emergency responders were able to free her.
Tuesday, Sept. 20, 7 a.m.