County Government

Marijuana expert: Prime time for Kansas public health officials to talk legalization

It’s a good time for public health officials to get in on the ground floor — before the debate really kicks into full gear — on legalization of marijuana in Kansas, a subject expert says. Andrew Freedman, who was the state of Colorado’s first director of marijuana coordination, gave ...

Wellness, mental health app now available free for Douglas County residents

An app that offers abundant resources for mental and physical health and wellness is now available for free to Douglas County residents. The Douglas County Commission approved a contract for the app, called myStrength, at its Jan. 30 meeting. It’s now online and available for free to anyone ...

Douglas County Commission to consider expanding intensive behavioral health program

Douglas County commissioners on Wednesday will consider expanding a wraparound behavioral health program to make it available seven days a week. Intensive Care Coordination, or ICC, services are made available to some clients who visit the emergency room, have contact with law enforcement or ...

City, county and school district leaders resolve to collaborate on equity issues

City, county and school district leaders say they want to work together in their efforts to address equity issues in the community, and they took a first step toward doing so Monday. Elected leaders and officials from the City of Lawrence, Douglas County and the Lawrence school district met ...

Douglas County may have to pay city of Lawrence $263K in overhead for Fire Medical

Budget hearing schedule updated at 3:08 p.m. Monday, July 1: Based on a change to the city of Lawrence budget, Douglas County may have to chip in an extra $263,067 in overhead for Lawrence-Douglas County Fire Medical in 2020. Next year, the city will move its human resources, information ...

Proposed ‘status quo’ budget would leave Douglas County mill levy flat

Story updated at 3:07 p.m. Monday, July 1: The interim Douglas County administrator has proposed a budget that maintains the current mill levy — however, Sarah Plinsky said, she “would call it a ‘status quo’ or ‘inflationary increases only’ budget.” Any new programs or ...

Photos: Reception honors retiring Douglas County Judge Paula Martin

Family, friends and colleagues of retiring Douglas County District Court Judge Paula Martin attended a reception in her honor Friday at the old county courthouse. Martin, whose announced retirement date is Saturday, has been on the bench 25 years and presided over some of Lawrence’s most ...

Douglas County commissioners approve Lawrence Community Shelter’s $148K request

After years of financial issues at the Lawrence Community Shelter, its board sought supplemental funding of $148,000 from the Douglas County Commission. Commissioners on Wednesday approved the request, each noting that the shelter couldn’t be allowed to close its doors but also offering ...

Douglas County sheriff won’t seek another term, plans to retire in 2020

Updated at 2:19 p.m. Wednesday Douglas County Sheriff Ken McGovern will retire instead of seeking reelection to a fifth term in 2020, he announced Wednesday. McGovern, 60, has worked for the sheriff’s office for 37 years and was elected sheriff, as a Republican, in 2004. He said his ...

Drug court pilot program to be considered in Douglas County budget

Although plans aren’t yet fully fleshed out, the Douglas County Commission will consider a proposed drug court as part of its budget process for 2020. As part of ongoing efforts to provide alternatives to incarceration and reduce recidivism, particularly for those with substance use ...

Fire Medical chief finalists say recruitment will be big challenge for department

Recruiting firefighters and paramedics will be a big challenge for the next chief of Lawrence-Douglas County Fire Medical, the three candidates for the vacant chief position told those attending a question-and-answer session Saturday at the Lawrence Public Library. The forum, which drew about ...

Douglas County Commission approves expansion of school-based mental health program

Kids in Eudora, Baldwin City and Perry-Lecompton schools will have some extra mental health support next year. Douglas County commissioners on Wednesday approved an expansion of the WRAP, or Working to Recognize Alternative Possibilities, program, which places master’s-level mental health ...

Protesters at Douglas County Commission meeting: ‘No pride in jail expansion’

Inside the Douglas County Courthouse, supporters packed the county commission’s meeting room Wednesday for proclamations of LGBTQ+ Pride Month and National Gun Violence Awareness Day. Outside on Massachusetts Street, however, a group of protesters held signs, spoke with passersby and handed ...