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County Mulling Health Department

Todd Pittenger - August 6, 2013 11:37 am

County Human Relations Director Marilyn Leamer (left) updates commissioners on the progression of transferring the health department into a county agency.

County Human Relations Director Marilyn Leamer (left) updates commissioners on the progression of transferring the health department into a county agency.

Saline County Commissioners are considering the City of Salina’s latest offer in regard to the Salina-Saline County Health Department.

After hearing an update Tuesday morning from County Human Relations Director Marilyn Leamer and County Administrator Rita Deister, commissioners met in executive session with County Counselor Mike Montoya.

Deister told commissioners that a tax increase of over 3 mils would be needed to fund the county budget for 2014. Over 2 mils of the increase is attributed to the health department becoming a county agency, and retaining all of the current services.

Leamer updated commissioners on the progression of transferring the health department into a county agency. She discussed differences in health insurance plans. She did not say how much extra month it will cost the county in health insurance. She did say that the plan is much different than the city plan, which currently covers health department employees. For the family plan, employees will pay nearly $300 a month more than the currently plan. She also said that some of the benefits are better, citing the prescription plan.

Montoya discussed the city’s latest proposal for the health department, which is the same proposal that the county rejected last week. County commissioners accepted several things that the city offered including the city paying $500,000 to fix the roof of the current building. They also agreed to allow $500,000 of health department reserve funds to be used to remodel the building. But in their counter-proposal the health department would become a county department, with the city helping to fund it. Employees would fall under the county umbrella. County Commissioners Randy Duncan and Jim Gile voted in favor of the counter-proposal. Commissioner John Price voted against it.

Prior to the executive session, County Commission Chairman Randy Duncan affirmed his desire for the health department to become a county department, saying that he would not change his mind.

Following the executive session commissioners did not make a decision. They have meetings scheduled all afternoon and could still discuss the topic.

Red Neck

August 6, 2013 at 1:24 pm

I tell these boys something right now. After that full page nonsense that was in the Sunday paper they should tell the city to take a hike and the county should control the health department. I agree with others who stated they need to cut programs and staff and since that full page deal on sunday possibly replace them all down there with new personnel. If I were employed by the health department I would like to know exactly who paid for that full page ad in the paper. Right now the county needs to move forward on what they voted to do. I also think Price needs to get into line with the other 2 commissioners.

do gooder

August 6, 2013 at 5:50 pm

Red neck your name says it all.

Fuchs Mi

August 7, 2013 at 10:42 am

Do Gooder the man with a bunck of k sal id’s quit trolling on here before something serious happens. Seems K sal has deceided to play the censor game again on the latest from yesterday 8/6. Some good comments were made including who was behind the full page derogitory comment in the journal on Sunday. I did not know they ran that gal out of town a few miles north of us evidently she caused problems there as well. Glad the 2 county commissioners have continued to vote to take over the health department. Just maybe the next time Aaron H. and his cronies on the city commission try and bully someone they will remember how it backfired on them. The only disappointment for me is Price becoming a mute on this issue and voting against it. I throught he was going to make changes if he got elected not hide behind his momma’s apron.

do gooder

August 7, 2013 at 4:29 pm

Well so your for raising taxes just to keep the health dept with county… Fuchis MI, You and Duncan and Gile playing business….

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