The Douglas County Commission is the place to go if you have concerns about an issue in the county.
Got a gripe about a county road?
Concerned about ticket prices at the county fair?
Don't think it's fair your neighbors aren't controlling their noxious weeds?
Call the Douglas County Commission.
The three-member board makes policy and planning decisions for the county. The commission meets twice weekly, on Monday mornings and Wednesday evenings.
After eight years as commissioner, Mark Buhler is vacating his seat, effective in January. His replacement will be chosen in the Nov. 3 general election.
Buhler, a Republican, will leave the county in the hands of fellow commissioners Tom Taul, chairman of the board, and Dean Nieder, who are marking their second year in county government.
A partner in Stephens Real Estate, Buhler represents the 1st District, making him the only board member to represent only residents of the city.
Taul, a Republican who represents the 2nd District, is a farmer, stockman and veterinarian. He is a native of the Baldwin area and received his undergraduate and doctorate of veterinary medicine degrees from Kansas State University.
Nieder, retired as manager of the Farmer's Co-op south elevator, also is a Republican and represents the 3rd District. A lifelong Lawrence area resident, Nieder worked for the Co-op for more than 20 years.
Each of the commissioners comes to the board with his own style and interests. For example, Buhler, who exercises a sharp sense of humor at commission meetings, has been instrumental in the county's involvement in the South Lawrence Trafficway and often leads the commission about development and growth issues.
With their farming backgrounds, Nieder and Taul are interested in the Douglas County Fair and during the county budget process, each scrutinized line items, trying to find ways to save the county money.
The commission also works closely with the Lawrence City Commission on joint projects and policies, especially regarding planning and development.
Vying for Buhler's open seat are Charles Jones, a Democrat, and Brian Kubota, a Republican.
-- Deb Gruver's phone message number is 832-7165. Her e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.