Harvey County Commission Chair Chip Westfall signed a local emergency disaster declaration Wednesday, May 22, for flooding throughout the county, the second declaration signed for flooding this month. A previous proclamation was signed May 8 for flooding earlier this month.

The National Weather Service issued a flash flood watch for Harvey County until Monday at 10:30 p.m.

Roads in Harvey County continue to be hindered by flooding. U.S. Highway 50 was closed Tuesday afternoon, but reopened Friday morning. K-89 into Halstead was also closed Tuesday afternoon, but reopened Saturday.

Fire and EMS jurisdictions in the county are using their modified response plan during flood conditions. This plan is previously prepared to allow other departments to help cover areas that may be difficult for the original department to reach due to road conditions, though response times may be affected.

Harvey County West Park and East Park were closed as of Thursday, and will remain closed through Monday, May 27.

Floodwaters can be dangerous. The water can be dirty or contain debris. Residents on well water may want to test their water after flooding to verify if it is safe to drink. Test kits are available through the Harvey County Planning, Zoning and Environmental department.

Septic tanks can also run slow or back up during flood, typically caused by a flooded drain field. A potential solution is plugging drains in the basement and reducing water use in the home.

Additional rain is in the forecast throughout the weekend. Harvey County Emergency Management encourages everyone to plan alternate travel routes, prepare supplies in case flood conditions worsen and stay aware of weather conditions.

Continued updates can be found on Harvey County's Facebook and Twitter pages

Road flooding SE 24 between Essex and Hertzler 4 

Harvey County Commission Chair Chip Westfall signed a local emergency disaster proclamation Wednesday, May 8, in response to local flooding conditions in the county.

The proclamation aids the County in requesting help from local and state resources if needed.

Kansas Governor Laura Kelly issued a state declaration of emergency for parts of the state due to flooding. 

The National Weather Service issued a flood warning that lasted for several days for much of south central Kansas, including Harvey County.

Several roadways in the county were affected by flooding throughout the week. U.S. Highway 50 was closed Thursday afternoon and into Friday, but was eventually reopened throughout the county. Harvey County Sheriff Chad Gay urged drivers not to try to drive through standing water and not to drive around barricades.

Harvey County Parks closed West Park for several days due to flooding, as well as parts of East Park. All County parks were reopened as of May 15.

Harvey County Emergency Management encouraged people to check for updates through resources such as local news, social media, weather radios and more.

Residents on well water may want to test their water after flooding to make sure it is safe to drink. The Planning, Zoning and Environmental department has test kits available for purchase.

Halstead bridge 1

The Harvey County Road and Bridge Department will start its pavement patching schedule for 2019 starting Wednesday, March 20.

Work will first begin on Halstead Road from U.S. Highway 50 to West First Street.

The areas scheduled for improvement are:

  • Halstead Road, north of U.S. Highway 50 to West Dutch Avenue (preliminary, for final paving to come later)
  • North River Park Road, north of Dutch Avenue
  • Southwest 96th Street, west of the City of Sedgwick
  • Southwest 125th Street, east of the City of Sedgwick
  • South East Lake Road, south of K-196
  • West Dutch Avenue, from North Halstead Road to Hesston Road
  • East First Street, from East Lake Road to the Newton city limits
  • South West Road, from U.S. Highway 50 to West First Street
The schedule and timeline for completion are dependent upon weather.

Traffic may be slowed or roadways may be closed during each project. Residents will be able to access their properties at all times. 

Road Improvement Beginning Whole 31819
The Harvey County Commission has appointed Michele Lowery as Harvey County appraiser, effective May 1.

Lowery will finish the remaining two years of the position's previously unexpired term. 

"I am wholeheartedly ready," Lowery said. Appraiser Michele Lowery

Lowery will replace Della Rowley, who served as appraiser while Lowery completed her qualifications for the post. Rowley resigned effective April 30, finishing a previously agreed upon six-month term.

"We're extremely grateful for Rowley's efforts leading the appraiser's office while Lowery pursued her certifications," said Harvey County Administrator Anthony Swartzendruber. "Lowery has been a long-time dedicated employee to Harvey County, and her knowledge and experience in that office will be invaluable. We're excited for her to get started in her new role."

Lowery has worked for Harvey County for 21 years. 
A special, single cause tax foreclosure sale will be held March 28.

The tract is located off of Southeast 14th Street, east of Old Main Street, in Newton. You can view the tract that is for sale here

The sale will begin at 10 a.m. It will be held in the front lobby of the Harvey County Courthouse. It is open to the public.

The sale will be administered by Harvey County Sheriff Chad Gay.