November 23, 2014

Edgerton council introduces new city administrator

Mark Taylor
submissions@gardnernews.com

The Edgerton City Council hired Elizabeth “Beth” Linn as city administrator on May 26.

Linn, who was one of nearly 60 persons who applied for the job, currently works as

Beth Linn

director of community development for the city of Raytown.

She previously worked as neighborhood services manager for the city of Merriam.

Linn has a bachelor’s degree from Kansas State University and a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Kansas.

Mayor Don Roberts said he was “excited” to have Linn on board.

“We are pleased to have someone with Beth’s education, experience and professional skills to help guide the council and the city through the rough times and the good times that lie ahead,” he said.

Linn’s salary was set at $83,000.

She replaces former administrator David Dillner, who resigned earlier this year to take a job with the city of Abilene.

Linn said the intermodal, along with other projects and challenges facing the city, sparked her interest in the job.

“The council seems really engaged in bringing the community forward,” she said. “We talked about a lot of exciting things like sidewalks and streets in town. Those kinds of things.”

Linn describes her administrative style as “leading by example.”

“In any one day in Raytown you’ll see me attending executive team meetings or answering the phones,” she said. “That fits perfectly for Edgerton. I have always been in small cities that operate on lean staffs, so doing budget and capital projects and answering the phones doesn’t bother me.”

Linn said her primary objective is to “work with the council on the things they have set forth.”

“I just want to help them achieve those goals,” she said.

Linn will start her new job in Edgerton on July 5.

In other business, the council:

Heard from resident Mary Pritchard, who expressed concern that she did not hear storm sirens during recent rounds of severe weather.

Mike Press, interim city administrator, said one of the city’s two sirens was recently on the blink due to a power failure. The siren has since been repaired by city staff.

Press said the siren does not have a battery backup and suggested that it be replaced.

Council members agreed, and also recommended that staff look into acquiring additional sirens to serve recently annexed properties.

The council also discussed a community storm shelter at the elementary school. Press said no other cities in Johnson County currently offer the service. He said having a community storm shelter would expose the city to liability in the event of no one being available to unlock the shelter during severe weather. Press said an alternative might be a coordinated effort by the city, school district, Johnson County Sheriff’s Office and Johnson County Fire District No. 1. He said each agency could shoulder some of the responsibility for unlocking the shelter based on protocol.

The council directed Press to discuss the idea with the school district, fire district and sheriff’s office.

Agreed to match donations up to $200 from citizens to assist victims of last week’s tornados in Kansas and Missouri. Donations of bottled water and cash will be accepted at city hall and also during the community movie night on May 28.

Authorized a letter of support and proposed a $2,000 financial match for a $1 million Federal Highway Administration grant to study transportation in the area surrounding the intermodal.

KDOT wants to apply for the grant on behalf of Gardner, Edgerton and Johnson County.

The grant would study safe routes, overpasses, bicycle safety and the realignment of U.S. 56 Highway.

Press said the city was notified of the grant opportunity on May 20 and that the application is due in Washington, D.C. next week.

“There is a sense of urgency,” he said.

Roberts said, “It’s an opportunity for a large study that will largely impact the area. It will be a long time before we can afford a $1 million study.”

Heard a request from Sundeep Singh, fireworks stand operator, to reconsider the city’s requirement for fireworks stand operators to get permission signatures from persons living within 150 feet of a fireworks stand.

He said there is already a state law prohibiting the use of fireworks within 100 feet of a fireworks stand, and he believed the city’s ordinance was redundant.

Singh said he also was concerned that any resident within 150 feet of the fireworks stand could prevent him from doing business out of spite.

Councilwoman Heidi Wiseman expressed concern that having a fireworks stand nearby restricts some homeowners from being able to use fireworks on their own property during the holiday. She said she didn’t want to intrude on business owners’ rights, but also doesn’t want to intrude on property owners’ rights.

The council will review the ordinance at a future meeting.

Comments

  1. I can only hope Ms. Linn has a doctorate degree in moral values and that she will actually work for the citizens rather than the big boys. Is that possible with the lowlife, rotten political world we live in???? Again, I can only hope………

  2. I am a resident in Merriam where Ms. Linn formerly worked on ‘street and sidewalk’ projects. All I can say is good luck Edgerton. With her in the drivers seat, it is going to be a bumpy ride.

  3. I wish we could get something done with the tick, snake infected easement in our addition around where children play.

    At tick-borne disease seminar at Johnson County Community College people affected gave their testimony. Said that some children affected are wheeled into their support group in wheelchairs because they are so sick.

  4. The Princess has returned to Johnson County. Watch your back Edgerton, there is only one person Ms. Linn is interested in and that is Ms. Linn.

  5. When Beth Linn left Merriam, there as a huge shy of relief. Be prepared for a sudden wind gust on July 5th from the East. There will be several folks from Raytown releasing their own “whew”.

  6. San Diego, California–
    Judge has ruled against fireworks due to the fact that they pollute the waters and the air.

    Edgerton, Kansas and SpringHill, Kansas–
    There are those of us that are not against the public city displays. What we are against is that the red necks bombard our properties with their fireworks. They should shoot off their fireworks towards their own properties. We can’t enjoy the 4th of July because we live in fear of damage to our properties and our health.

    One fellow already burned down his house ($177,000.00) in Blue Springs playing with his fireworks.

    Warehouse in Hawaii housing fireworks already caught on fire killing 5 people.

    You betcha!!! fireworks once a year or the last in your life???

  7. Well, it is my understanding Edgerton Mayor Roberts is a fireworks guru so you know why you have the lax fireworks laws in Edgerton – such a shame that money controls the agenda rather than what is best for the citizens who apparently are only around to pay the bills.

  8. I worked with Beth Linn the whole time she was with the City of Merriam and let me tell you, she is not a nice person. I sure hope this most recent move is not something to get her back to Merriam City Hall.

  9. Someone didn’t do a very good job of doing a back ground check before this hire. Take a good look at the before and after photos after this mishap.

  10. D.Fitzwell says:

    I’ve had an opportunity to do business with a number of communities in the metro including Raytown and Merriam. In both instances, I had the pleasure of working with Ms. Linn. She’s a smart professional woman and Edgerton is incredibly fortunate to have her! Both Raytown and Merriam are challenging communities, but the efforts of Ms. Linn an City Staff have really started to resurrect Raytown’s image and professionalism.

    Like I said, she’s smart, works hard and listens to the people.

    Go BETH GO!!!

  11. Well said, Mr. Fitzwell. Every interaction I’ve had with Mrs. Linn has been nothing but professional and kind.
    Raytown has lost a valuable asset in Beth Linn. We are confident Edgerton will be pleased with their gain.

  12. Just maybe then she will do something with the tick, snake infected easement in our addition around where children play.

    At tick-borne disease seminar at Johnson County Community College people affected gave their testimony. Said that some children affected are wheeled into their support group in wheelchairs because they are so sick.

  13. Jerry L Kellogg Sr says:

    Here are a few videos of Raytown Board of Aldermen meetings this year during which Community Development Director Beth Linn gave presentations regarding a Neighborhood Stabilization Program grant from the State of Missouri Department of Economic Development. I personally do not know Ms. Linn; I am simply offering these as examples of her professional interaction with a governing body. I wish her well as Edgerton’s City Administrator.

    January 4, 2011 – Request for support of Raytown’s application to participate in the program (from 0:00 until 18:01). This discussion then concludes with some rather rancorous remarks between a few of the Aldermen: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xkQJGb_Ytow

    April 12, 2011 – Request for approval of an agreement with the State of Missouri for Raytown to act as the lead city for administration of the awarded Neighborhood Stabilization Program (from 4:28 until 33:50): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ol5Uy1EYxlQ

    May 3, 2011 – Requests approval of a contract with MARC for administrative services associated with the Neighborhood Stabilization Program (from 5:40 until 54:18): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XF9yCcTAZw4

  14. D. Fitzwell says:

    Gee Trish, maybe you should clean your own house before littering someone elses? It doesn’t appear Merriam is exactly keeping an eye on the shop? http://www.kansascity.com/2011/06/28/2981472/former-merriam-municipal-court.html

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  17. As a citizen of Raytown, I have had numerous occasions to interface with Mrs. Linn. In all cases, I have found her to be a true professional and acting in the best interest of the people. Beth is responsible for presenting a vacant property ordinance in the city of Raytown because vacant properties are a big code enforcement problem. I appreciated her work and trust the people of Edgerton observe her professionalism.

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