Riley County is exploring some new methods to share information about what’s on the agenda for the county commission meetings.
Following reorganization Thursday, it was announced that the 2024 Chairperson, Commissioner John Ford will help pilot brief video updates on the Riley County Facebook page prior to the commission’s meetings on Mondays and Thursdays, calling attention to upcoming agenda items to educate the public, free of any political spin.
“It’s a way to let people know, hey this is coming up this morning, this is what we’re talking about, this is how the public hearing is going to go. It’s more of a visual approach rather than the black and white words and numbers that you typically see,” he said.
Each video update will be approximately five minutes or less and would incur no fiscal impact, since the county already possesses the necessary recording equipment.
Commissioners also endorsed written testimony in support of Senate Bill 196, a measure that would restore 100% of Local Ad Valorem Tax Reduction funds to cities and counties.
The Senate Tax Committee held a hearing on the proposal Thursday morning.
The letter states “This bill [SB196] reactivates state funding of an existing state statute which, beginning in 1965 and until 2004, returned to counties statewide a portion of the sales tax dollars already paid by local citizens. The state’s refusal to comply with that existing state law for the past 20 years has meant local citizens must pay twice for purchases subject to local sales taxes. Without access to those returned funds, counties across the state have, over the past 20 years, increased property taxes to fund essential local services. Under state law, property tax remains the primary source of every county’s operating revenue.”
Outgoing Chair, Kathryn Focke also shared her gratitude for the past year’s accomplishments.
“I’ve enjoyed being the Chairwoman for the past year. I’m pleased with the cooperation and accomplishments the County and this Board have made in 2023, and I look forward to 2024,” she said.