The Cherokee County Board of Supervisors heard from Tom Bouska and Jim Thompson of the Department of Human Services on Tuesday. The Board received a reorganization update from Bouska and Thompson.
Effective July 1 several DHS offices around the state, including the one in Cherokee, will be downsized too less than fulltime status.
The Cherokee DHS office is currently located in a building owned by Cherokee County. Bouska and Thompson discussed with the Board on a way of still utilizing office space. It was suggested that they keep two or three smaller offices and share a common areas such as bathrooms and a meeting room.
The Board hopes to utilized the front half of the building for future use if another county agency needs space and leaving the back half available to the DHS who will meet with clients by on appointment only basis.
Bouska and Thompson also requested the use of a number of filing cabinets to be moved to another location. They would mark the cabinets as property of Cherokee County and after the files have been gone through and reorganized they would bring the cabinets back to the county.
Also some staff members of the Cherokee DHS requested that they be allowed to keep some chairs that are ergonomical to take with them if they also marked the chairs as property of Cherokee County and returned them at a later date. The Board approved both requests.
In other business Duane Mummert addressed the Board on behalf of the Cherokee Work Activity Services. Mummert requested more funds from the Board in regarding the CWAS's remodeling project.
Mummert stated that bids for the project came in higher than their original estimates and construction cost will be near $300,000. It was first estimated at $250,000. Hazelhoff Construction was the low bidder at $297,000.
Again the county owns the building that houses the CWAS and it is the first major renovation of the property.
The Board told Mummert they would try to find some money somewhere to get this project completed. Soon after Mummert and other representatives of the CWAS left the meeting a motion was made by Supervisor Terry Graybill to grant $100,000 from the 2011 general fund to go toward completing the remodeling project. The motion was seconded by Supervisor Mark Leeds and was passed with all ayes. The Board has already committed $200,000 in the past for this project.
Community Services Director Lisa Langlitz address the Board with two contracts to be renewed from Plains Area Mental Health and Pathways. Chairman Jeff Simonsen signed the two renewal contracts.
Leanne Hammer of the Cherokee Regional Medical Centers Public Health also addressed the Board to present them with an Iowa Department of Public Health contract for terms of electronic payment. Simonsen also signed that contract.
The Board then turn their focus to the approval of fireworks permits, altogether there were five permits approved.
The Board also approved $5,000 to go to the Cherokee Rural Fire District to help in the purchase of a brush truck to help with rural grassfire. The lightweight truck is intended to quickly put out grassfires and not get stuck like the heaver trucks that are currently being used.
The issue of time clocks for county departments was once again tabled until the Board hears back for the Solutions Software Company.