City and schools affected by county treasurer

GREAT BEND, Kansas- “He’s a nice guy, but it takes more than being just a nice guy to get the job done,” says Jennifer Schartz, Barton County Commissioner.

Barton county tax rolls and bank accounts are now being handled by an outside company, at taxpayer expense.

“It wasn’t a planned project and we have assumed the project contractually with the understanding that it is of the utmost importance to the county to get it done, as quickly and as timely as we can,” says Pam Meadows who works at Computer Information Concepts.

KSN reached out again to county treasurer Kevin Wondra, to find out why the books hadn’t been resolved for more than a year.

He told us he didn’t want to talk publicly until the matter was resolved.

“It’s frustrating for me that Kevin’s been in that position for so many years and still does not have his finger on how things happen and the timeliness in how they have to happen,” says Schartz.

Until the tax rolls are reconciled, taxing entities like the City of Great Bend, the school district and Barton County Community College don’t know how much money they are going to get this year to do their budgets.

“When it comes to revenue figures there are figures, we need to finalize the budget and everything, but we do an awful lot of the other work first,” said Howard Partington, Great Bend City Administrator.

The city plans to estimate their budget, based on last year’s numbers, but the school board says that’s not something their willing to risk.

“There’s no way to guarantee a number, we can have an idea what our evaluation is going to be but for actual numbers I wouldn’t want to set the actual budget with numbers that I’m guessing on,” said Khris Thexton, Director of Finance at USD 428.

The outside firm hopes that the tax rolls and bank accounts will be reconciled by the end of June.

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