Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Texas are holding elections next week. Find out what's on your ballot in our latest report.

Sedgwick County, Kansas

From Ballotpedia
Revision as of 08:04, 22 April 2014 by Jerrick Adams (Talk | contribs)

Jump to: navigation, search
Sedgwick County, Kansas is one of 105 counties county in Kansas.

Website evaluation

See also: Evaluation of Kansas county websites
Grade2.pngA-
Budget
{{{1}}}
Meetings
{{{1}}}
Elected Officials
{{{1}}}
Administrative Officials
{{{1}}}
Permits, zoning
{{{1}}}
Audits
{{{1}}}
Contracts
{{{1}}}
Lobbying P
Partial.png
Public records
{{{1}}}
Local taxes
{{{1}}}
County websitesGuide.png
Transparency grading process


The good

  • Taxes[1][2]
    • Tax revenues are broken down by federal, state and local funding in the budget.
    • Local taxes, like property taxes, are available online.
    • Residents are able to pay taxes online.
  • GIS
    • An interactive GIS map is posted.[3]
  • Public records[4]
    • The public information officer is identified and maintained by Records Manager/Freedom of Information Officer position. This person provides a mailing address, phone number and personalized email.
    • A public records form is provided by the Records Manager/Freedom of Information Officer
  • Elected officials
    • Elected officials are listed with a mailing address, phone number and personalized email.[5]
  • Meetings
    • Meeting minutes are archived for three years.
    • Meeting agendas are archived for three years.
    • A meeting calendar is available and names the times and locations of public meetings.
    • Meeting video and podcasts are available.[6]
  • Contracts
    • Bids and RFPs are posted online.[7]
    • Approved contract statements are provided for vendors.[8]
  • Checkbook
    • The county posts its checkbook register online.[9]
  • Permits and zoning
    • Zoning ordinances are posted online.
    • Permit applications can be downloaded on the site, along with information on how to apply for the permits.[10][11]
  • Administrative officials
    • Department heads are listed for each department.[12]
    • Contact information for administrative officials is provided, including a mailing address, phone number, and personalized email.
  • Budget
    • The most current budget is listed.
    • Budgets are archived for three years.[13]
  • Audits
    • The most recent audit is posted.
    • Audits dating back to 2010 are available.[14]
  • According to the county's checkbook register, Sedgwick County did not spent any money on contracted services for lobbying from 2009-2011. The communications department has put forth legislative platforms for the past several years, however, and the county website does not say how much money was spent for this.[15]

The bad

  • Lobbying
    • If the county engaged in lobbying actives or if it's a member of government lobbying associations are not disclosed, nor are the total costs of lobbying activities or membership dues for associations available.
  • Public records
    • A fee schedule for documents is not provided. Website says each department sets its own fees but does not provide the fees.

Personnel

According to the county's FY 12 budget, Sedgwick County has 3,084.19 full-time equivalent employees.[16]

Budget

For 2012, Sedgwick had a budget deficit of $38,928,284.[16]

2012 budget revenues[16]
Source Revenue
Property tax $136,077,587
Motor vehicle tax $16, 191,905
Local sales and use tax $25,165,199
Other taxes/spec. assessment $5,446,263
Intergovernmental $46,695,992
Charges for service $118,226,500
Uses of money and property $4,374,393
Other revenues $15,113,468
Transfers $5,663,819
Total revenue $372,955,126
2012 budget expenditures[16]
Function Expenditures
General government $117,666,213
Bond and interest $21,581,554
Employee compensation pool --
Public safety $140,452,782
Public works $28,228,665
Health and welfare $78,540,950
Culture and recreation $12,077,688
Community development $13,335,558
Total expenditures $411,883,410

Retirement costs

Pensions

Main article: Kansas public pensions

Most Sedgwick County employees are in the Kansas Public Employees Retirement System (KPERS), a defined-benefit pension plan. Sedgwick County police and firefighters are in the Kansas Police & Firemen's Retirement System (KP&F), also a defined-benefit plan.[17]

In 2010, the county paid $6,848,410 into KPERS and $4,110,524 into KP&F.

OPEBs

As of 2010, the county had $28.5 million in unfunded liabilities for its other post-employment benefits other than pensions (OPEBs).[17]

Service consolidation

Sedgwick County and the City of Wichita consolidate certain services to save costs and increase efficiency. They share a planning department and are considering consolidating building code enforcement.[18]

Lobbying

As of 2011, the county was budgeting for a Director of Government Relations in the 2012 budget, where it hadn't for the two prior years.[19]

The county has had legislative platforms for the past several years, and it had fallen under the Government Relations role of the communications department.[15]

Taxes

The 2010 county and state tax rate was 49.195, down from 49.815 in 2009.[20]

Economic development

Bombardier deal

In 2011, Sedgwick County and the City of Wichita both gave $1 million in incentives to convince Bombardier Learjet to expand in the area.[18]

Unemployment rate

The county has seen a large spike in unemployment due to the recession, losing 5.8% of its workforce in the first quarter of 2010, the second highest in the nation.[21]

External links

References

  1. Sedgwick County "Tax Levies," Accessed Dec 6, 2012
  2. Sedgwick County "Tax Department," Accessed Dec 6, 2012
  3. Sedgwick County "GIS," accessed November 21, 2011
  4. Sedgwick County "KORA," Accessed Dec 6, 2012
  5. Sedgwick County "Board of Commissioners," Accessed Dec 6, 2012
  6. Sedgwick County "Meetings," Accessed Dec 6, 2012
  7. Sedgwick County "Requests for Bids and Proposals," Accessed Dec 6, 2012
  8. Sedgwick County "Contracts," Accessed Dec 6, 2012
  9. Sedgwick County "County Checkbook," Accessed Dec 6, 2012
  10. MASD, Zoning," Accessed Dec 6, 2012
  11. Sedgwick County "Building Permit Application," accessed November 21, 2011
  12. Sedgwick County "Directory," Accessed Dec 6, 2012
  13. Sedgwick County "Budget Office," Accessed Dec 6, 2012
  14. Sedgwick County "Accounting," Accessed Dec 6, 2012
  15. 15.0 15.1 Sedgwick County "Government Relations," accessed November 21, 2011
  16. 16.0 16.1 16.2 16.3 Sedgwick County "2012 Budget Executive Summary," accessed November 21, 2011
  17. 17.0 17.1 Sedgwick County "2010 CAFR," accessed November 21, 2011
  18. 18.0 18.1 Wichita Eagle "Managers: Wichita, Sedgwick County should merge services only when it makes sense," accessed November 21, 2011
  19. Sedgwick County "2012 Budget -- County Manager," accessed November 21, 2011
  20. Sedgwick County "2010 Tax Levies," accessed November 21, 2011
  21. Watchdog, Nine-out-of-ten largest counties lost jobs in first quarter, Oct. 19, 2010
[[Category:Top 10 project