Dillard Webster, McPherson County director of Emergency Management, announced his retirement effective Oct. 1 at the county commission meeting Monday.
Webster has served in the emergency services field for almost 25 years, the majority of that with McPherson County.
Webster said in a letter to the commission he was ready to leave the rigors of emergency services.
“As any first responder will tell you, this service requires total commitment to those who are served. I personally have been on 24/7 call, weekends, holidays, nights, for all these years. I don’t believe I ever missed a call,” he said in the letter.
Webster concluded the letter by saying it was an honor to serve the community.
Both commissioners Ron Loomis and Linus Linaweaver noted Webster’s quality work and thanked him for his service to the county.
Webster did not elaborate on his plans for his retirement.
No replacement has been named.
Prairie Trail Scenic Byway extended
The commission gave its approval Monday to an extension of the Prairie Trail Scenic Byway
The McPherson County Commission was the last entity required to approve the extension.
The byway currently runs from U.S. Highway 56 at Canton to Kansas Highway 140 near Kanopolis. The extension will run from K-14O to Interstate 70 north of Ellsworth.
Sue Schiegel, byway coordinator, said the goal is to have an entrance or exit for the Kansas byways off an interstate.
Sites of interest near the byway include Maxwell Wildlife Refuge outside of Canton, Coronado Heights outside of Lindsborg, the Kansas Motorcycle Museum in Marquette, the Faris Caves of Marquette, Kanopolis State Park and Mushroom Rock State Park.
The byways were created to promote tourism in Kansas.
Kansas tourism generates about $8 billion in revenue annually, which is 4.4 percent of the state’s gross domestic product. The travel and tourism industry is the third largest employer in the state, employing 148,228 people.
Southcentral Kansas plays a key role in this industry, generating 27 percent of the tourism expenditures statewide.
In other business, the commission:
Approved a $31,162 bid from Phone Connection of Salina for a new phone system for the courthouse.
Approved $6,347 for the purchase of new firewall appliance and three-year maintenance plan from CSI, which has an office in McPherson.