‘Rolling Hills’ or ‘Roiling Hills?’

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Something appears to be left unsaid and dare we say nefarious in Woodbury County’s persistence to not only leave the Sioux Rivers Regional Mental Health and Disability Service group, but also calling for its total dissolution while making a bold plea to the DHS to stand on its own as a “regional” supplier of mental health care services for the needy and disabled.

The original county lineup for Sioux Rivers officially established by the State in July 2014 included Woodbury, Plymouth, Sioux, and Cherokee counties. However, after evaluating its participation and seeking a better option, Cherokee County dropped out and joined forces with the six-county Rolling Hills Community Services Region consisting of similar-sized Buena Vista, Sac, Ida, Calhoun, Crawford, Carroll, and Cherokee counties.

Since its inception, the Sioux Rivers group’s Chair is from Sioux County, with each member county having equal representation. For many months, Woodbury County Supervisors have publicly voiced their displeasure of the Sioux Rivers operation.

As Woodbury County proceeds with its effort to leave Sioux Rivers and negotiate to join Rolling Hills, it’s conceivable that Rolling Hills may not ultimately welcome that 500-pound gorilla that may not always play nice or embrace the art of compromise.

With a 2016 population of 102,779, Woodbury County is larger than all existing seven counties in Rolling Hills. For comparison, Cherokee totals 11,508; BV 20,332; Ida 6,985; Sac 9,876; Crawford 16,940; and Carroll 20,437 for a total of 86,078. In Sioux Rivers, Plymouth totals 25,200, and Sioux 34,898.

There may be untold viable reasons for Woodbury County’s actions, but to us it has always smacked of bully ways and taking your ball and going home in a pout simply to break up the game because you couldn’t pitch of bat clean-up..

And mental health care for the needy and disabled is certainly no game.

If it comes to fruition, we wish those in Rolling Hills well in dealings with its new member and its menacing presence.

(Paul Struck-Editor)