Douglas County’s Unified Command structure that has been responsible for leading the comprehensive COVID-19 pandemic response since March will transition next week to an expanded COVID-19 Recovery Coordination Team to help manage the community’s long-term recovery.
The COVID-19 pandemic required the closure of Douglas County District Court earlier this spring. All traffic cases scheduled before June 1, 2020 on the Traffic Docket, held every Friday morning in the ProTem Division, were continued. The Court has since mailed notices and new dates to all of the impacted individuals. When District Court reopens in June, individuals with traffic cases will likely face significant wait times during the Traffic Docket.
Using guidance from the Kansas Supreme Court and public health agencies, Chief Judge McCabria has issued several administrative orders since March 13 that will maintain critical functions of Douglas County District Court during increased concern over spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19).
Douglas County Government and the Douglas County Community Foundation received a $26,000 matching grant from Partners for Places. The match was provided through local donations to the Douglas County Community Foundation.
The $52,000 in total funding will be used to complete Phase 1 of a three-phase Open Space Plan development and implementation process:
Effective immediately, the Douglas County District Court Clerk’s Office will be open to the public for limited purposes by appointment only. Appointments must be made at least 24 hours in advance, and all persons entering the Judicial and Law Enforcement Center will be required to wear a mask and follow established social distancing guidelines. Any person with a temperature over 100 degrees will be denied entry.
Douglas County District Court hearings are open to the public via live streaming on its YouTube channel.
The Kansas Department of Transportation and the Federal Highway Administration are hosting a virtual meeting for the public to learn more about the South Lawrence Trafficway Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS).
The virtual open house provides project updates and shares the reasonable alternatives for the South Lawrence Trafficway (SLT) improvements. Participants have the ability to submit questions and comments through an online form that is sent directly to the project team and they respond as needed.
The Douglas County Criminal Justice Coordinating Council (CJCC) met virtually on May 12 using Zoom. Chair Pam Weigand, Director of Douglas County Criminal Justice Services, facilitated the meeting.
Researchers Jack McDevitt, of Northeastern University, and Janice Iwama, of American University, provided an update on the Law Enforcement Contact Study.
The Lawrence-Douglas County Sustainability Office planned to publicly launch the “Lawrence and Douglas County Climate Action and Adaptation Plan” this month with a highly-engaged community input process. However, those plans have been postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic and public health orders.
The Douglas County Heritage Conservation Council announced the recipients of the 2020 Natural & Cultural Heritage grant program May 6, 2020, after the Board of County Commissioners approved them. A total of $200,000 was awarded to 12 projects. The projects and the amounts awarded are:
1. St. Luke AME Church, $57,750
Project: Brick and window rehabilitation