Tuesday, September 03, 2013
3 September 2013 Dearborn County Commissioners Meeting Notes
3 September 2013 Dearborn County Commissioners Meeting Notes
Present: Shane McHenry, President, Art Little, and Kevin Lynch
Also present: Gayle Pennington, Auditor, Teresa Randall, County Administrator, and Andy Baudendistel, Attorney.
Washington Township Advisory Board Vacancy- Kenneth Turner who resides on Mt Tabor was appointed.
Drug Free Workplace Ordinance- tabled at Baudendistel’s request. He has been off on personal leave for new baby.
ROW- Johnny Wright- needs the Row to get his mobile home through to his former house site (his house burned down) Mike Hall phoned McHenry saying that he did not have the information from Dennis Kraus, Jr. that he needed. Tabled until September 17th meeting.
HIGHWAY DEPARTMENT: Todd Listerman, Highway Engineer
INDOT Change Order #0013- North Dearborn reconstruction- for $0 – needed to reword something in contract per INDOT. Approved and signed.
Bridge 102 Change Order #1- North Dearborn Road- for over and under runs and additional field entrance. $9496.49. Approved and signed. This is the first and last change order on that project.
Tim Grieve, Highway Superintendent:
Harrison Hill off Jamison also called North Dearborn Road hill. It’s a bad slip. Geostabilization International who has done 4 projects is the company he wants to use. He has $190,000 in one of his accounts to fix this. He wants to use about $130,000 on this. They have done another slip further out on North Dearborn, Mt Pleasant, North Hogan, etc. These are doing well so far. This is a new process that seems to be working fairly well so far. They did the SR 48 hill also about 5 years ago. They guarantee it for 5 years. INDOT now has an open- ended contract with this company per Listerman. This process doesn’t close down for months to fix using this. Approved.
Additional Paving- wants to pave OLD SR 1 section called Sawmill Road for $80-90,000. This completes all of sawmill then. This will be an addendum to the contract as the bids came in lower than expected so they are using the funds to finish the road. Approved.
ADMINISTRATOR: Teresa Randall- EMS Project Update- won’t take too long. It is complicated she said but she will just hit the highlights today. She has Jason Smith who is EMS field coordinator for state and Chad Nanz – Greendale-and Ed Ops- Aurora. Randall feels like there is a spirit of cooperation more than ever before. This is due to Commissioner Lynch going out to communicate with all these groups.
She said they looked at Units specific and regional issues. Training Volunteers and resources.
Threats to sustainability are based on the fact that most EMS are volunteer even on the national level. They find a decline in volunteers and an increase in the dropout rates due to other responsibilities at home. Fire volunteers are easier to get. They have to start paying volunteers soon in order to keep this volunteer base alive. The goal is to prop them up and keep them going. $20,000 per unit that county funds might cover their insurance. There are no good north to south county routes. Day shift coverage is hard to get, due to day jobs. There are increasing regulations and training requirements with no funding to accomplish all this. Units have always been in their own community. There seems to be a lot of equipment with not enough people to run it. Randall thinks they need a regional solution. Share resources. 911 becomes critical and their protocols need to be updated. State and federal moneys are not adequate. They rely on festivals and fundraisers. Greendale uses $1 on each utility bill.
Response time issue exists but eventually someone gets there. $100,000 is being asked of Council for these units in additional $300,000 they get now. She wants that to NOT be for equipment. Put a program together so that this is an incentive program for those who make their runs for example. The EMS alliance asked for double of what they currently have. Council probably won’t do this – so she is proposing something that will help show what they are improving with this money as an incentive. They may need to share resources and volunteers. Each community pays various amounts per run. Most units are billing for their runs- asking for insurance money previously. Harrison is still in the budget as there is not enough coverage for that area yet. St. Leon will have to transport in order to continue getting the same funding as other EMS units. Randall is looking at reward program or training programs for these units. Could there be a tax credit for volunteers. For example NY gave a 10% tax assessment rebate thru state law to volunteers. Randall said that $316,000 is from another Riverboat Fund for EMS and fire- divided equally across 21 entities including water rescue. Township Trustees also support these services. It is actually a township responsibility. She talked to Craig Beckley about this. Townships all vary in this amount.
Success will depend on all sharing in this responsibility. They need to be accountable and community support and education is necessary. There is a statute that allows the county to choose to provide the service.
Ed Ops concurred and said that response times is a big issue for them. Aurora had 860 runs last year and got $190 per run from billing. That is an average from all billings including those who don’t pay. Last year they were at a $38,000 loss for the year. When Aurora went to paid service they needed 600 runs a year at least to make that pay. That was for 2 paid EMS and then added a couple more for early morning and evening which was what accounted for the $38,000 loss. He thanked Terri and Kevin for their work. Randall said they were asking for incremental funding for trainees from Council.
Chad Nanz said that we didn’t get here overnight. He said that they were struggling and are operating 8-9 year old ambulances. He understands why they want o see a return on investment before allocating funds.
Jason Smith said they are seeing this as a national problem. It boils down to dollars and cents. There are some other places working hard on this. He is from Ripley County himself. From what he hears, he can see that they have worked hard on solutions possible. The statute is very gray on taking this on. He is here from state and regulatory agency with 13 members on that commission. Ed Gordon from Greendale serves also. They are there to assist in figuring out how to make it work.
They are no longer studying the problem per Randall- they are moving onto solutions. McHenry assured them that their concerns are not falling on deaf ears. He said they are continuing to work on this and appreciates Kevin and Terri gathering all this information. He said the county will continue to make this a priority and we will fix it the best we can. Little said that when he was trustee in his township in Bright they were paying more than the county at that time. Now that has changed. He stressed that the volunteers are essential. Lynch said that we are blessed to have these dedicated people. The training and challenges faced are still there. He said we will get there.
Jail Project: Brad Ruhlman from Maxwell gave monthly update on the jail project. Last month started foundation and plumbing and continuing that this month. Underground electric starts this month. Precast concrete walls will come in 6 foot samples to see what they will look like and colors etc. Then they will start demolition in th basement of the existing jail etc. They are right on schedule and on budget. They are well within the limits of the contingency funds. McHenry thanked him for expeditingthe parking situation around the jail. Brad Armstrong is his new intern on the project.
AUDITOR: Gayle Pennington- August 20 minutes were approved and signed. Claims approved and signed.
ATTORNEY: Andy Baudendistel- Convention Visitors and Tourism Commission- Statute required him to clean up some of this. He wanted permission to make sure ours was updated with state law. Commissioners approved him researching this. He wanted current members to be notified by commissioners that this was occurring. Approved. This should be ready by next meeting.
COMMISSIONER COMMENTS- Little – the bigger EMS groups get funding- but we should be sure not to forget the smaller groups. Lynch agreed and wanted to have the bigger groups help the smaller ones whenever possible. McHenry said that we will have to work together and Lynch said sharing will improve the camaraderie and brotherhood in this service. The training is also critical.
LATE ARRIVAL INFORMATION- none
PUBLIC COMMENT- none
Meeting adjourned at 10:15 PM
Christine Brauer Mueller