June 17, 2024

Health district seeks to update personnel policy, handbook | News, Sports, Jobs


LISBON – The Columbiana County Health District will begin using Clemans Nelson & Associates for Human Resources consulting services and to update the personnel and procedures manual.

Board members approved two separate contracts with the Columbus firm, one for consulting at a cost of $250 per month and one for a special project to update the policy manual at a cost of no more than $7,250, which is a reduced fee because the health district is a retention client.

The County Health Commissioner said Dr. Wes Vins that Clemans wrote the original policy manual from 1988. The company works with many health departments.

“They seem to know our business well,” Vins said.

The board asked him to look at Human Resources options shortly after losing longtime environmental director Lori Barnes and health services administrator Courtney Stryffeler. Barnes had been with the department 19 years and Stryffeler had been there since October 2022. At the last meeting, some personnel restructuring was announced.

In other business, Vins and Environmental Director Laura Fauss urged residents to visit the county health department site at the Columbiana County Fair from July 31 to August 6 where interns will demonstrate mosquito traps. Car seats and packs and plays will also be on display. There will also be giveaways funded by the mosquito surveillance grant and there will be items available called bits and dunes that can be placed in a standing water source outside. Bites and dunks do not allow mosquitos to breed. There will also be personal mosquito repellant, as well as lots of announcements about health department programs.

“Come in and learn about what the Department of Health does,” Fauss said.

In his report, Fauss told the board about an oral rabies vaccine bait that is scheduled to begin on July 31st and continue through August 25th. According to a press release about the bait, target areas will include the county of Lisbon and the area immediately south of Lisbon known as Jordanville.

Hand baiting will occur from July 31 through August 25, helicopter baiting will occur August 8 through August 12, and fixed-wing aircraft baiting will occur from August 18 through August 22. The distribution will be made by the Wildlife Services Program of the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, in cooperation with the Ohio Department of Health.

Fauss warned residents that if they find one of the baits, they should leave it alone, but if they need to move it from where pets or children play, they should wear gloves and dispose of it in a wooded area.

She noted that it’s an important program, especially since nearby Mahoning County had one positive rabies test this year. For information about rabies and the shortcomings of surveillance testing, call the health department at 330-424-0272.

The board was introduced to Amanda Amato, the new health services administrator for the health district.

In other business, the board approved a board order for Justin Cathey, Mahoning Avenue, Alliance, for a septic nuisance violation that has been an issue since March 2022 at his property, ordering him to obtain a permit and install a replacement home sewage treatment system.

The board also approved travel for Vins and health district medical director Dr. Gretchen Nickell to attend the fall conference of the Ohio Association of Health Commissioners in Columbus, where they were invited to present information regarding the department’s response to the East Palestine train derailment.

A reimbursement of $1,760 was approved for the law firm of Fitch, Kendall, Cecil, Robinson and Barry of Salem. The law firm had already paid for site and soil evaluations for two trees in Unity Township, but then learned they weren’t needed. The evaluations had not been done yet, so the health department will refund the money.

Vins shared with the board a proposal received from the office of Ohio Sen. JD Vance regarding the staff and the health department’s response to the former East Palestine train derailment. It seems that some constituents spoke highly of the staff and the Senator’s office wanted to pass that information on. The department is still taking water samples.

“We hope residents will have what they need,” Vins said, adding that if they don’t, they should call the health department.

The next board meeting is 4:30 pm August 16 at the health department, 7360 state Route 45, Lisbon.




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