Barber: early votes racking up for W-MU bond issue
BY BROOKS TAYLOR
Mt. Pleasant News
Henry County Auditor Shelly Barber told county department heads during Thursday’s regular meting of the board of supervisors that the state auditors have completed work on their audit of the county.
“Everything seemed to go well when the state auditors were here recently,” Barber said.
The auditor said her office also was busy preparing for the Winfield-Mt. Union School bond election Feb. 7. Thus far, approximately 30 patrons of the school district have voted absentee. Polls will be open Feb. 7 from noon until 8 p.m. Barber characterized the early voting as particularly strong for a school election.
Barber said during every school election she receives some questions from people on whether they can vote in the election if they own land in the school district. “The person’s residency has to be in the school district in order to vote. If you own land in the district, but don’t live in the district, you can’t vote in the election.”
County Conservation Executive Director John Pullis said the conservation recently hired a new secretary and is close to hiring a second naturalist. A total of 22 people applied for the position. Pullis said interviews have been completed and an announcement should be forthcoming.
He said eight cabin reservations have already been made on the department’s new online reservation system. Reservations can be made on the website My County Parks.com.
“It takes the handling of money out of our hands (reservations are paid when made),” he noted. “We will still take walk-up campers.”
Henry County Health Center is in the process of changing the name of the office from community to public health.
A new program is in the process of being implemented at the New London Community School District, Walt Jackson, emergency management director, reported. He said he has been meeting with school officials to design a school safety program, which will be rolled out next year.
Jackson will also be conducting severe weather training for courthouse employees this spring.
A new crisis intervention team will be formed in the near future in the mental health region, Sarah Berndt, coordinator of disability services/general assistance director, told the department heads. Berndt recently spent one-and-one-half days in San Antonio, Texas, which has a program that is seen as a model for crisis intervention training.
“The (mental health) region is working on a model for a crisis intervention team,” she said. “It is a program for law enforcement and mental health providers on how to improve interaction with people with mental disorders and substance-abuse problems. We are trying to tailor the program to a rural setting.”
In other news Berndt said the region is working with the Great River Medical Center to develop a crisis line. Finally, she said that Hillcrest Family Services of Mt. Pleasant has entered into an agreement with Great River to have a psychiatrist at their Mt. Pleasant office several times weekly.
Finally, Supervisor Gary See told county officials that all of the minutes and schematics from the jail committee meetings are on the county website.
Supervisors will meet again in regular session Tuesday, Feb. 7, at 9 a.m., in the courthouse.