County attorney to move into former DHS building
Jefferson County supervisors each reported Monday on progress and improvement from the many committees each sits on apart from the board of supervisors.
Supervisor Lee Dimmitt was enthusiastic about Project Lead the Way, a national program providing rigorous and innovative curriculum for middle and high schools in science, technology, engineering and math.
“Fairfield High School is one of the high schools nationally certified,” he said.
“Indian Hills [Community College] will begin offering a pre-engineering program in conjunction with the University of Iowa.
“FHS, along with tremendous support from many local manufacturers, is introducing students into these areas of need,” said Dimmitt. “And it’s going to start in the middle school, with mentors coming from our high school.”
Supervisor chairman Steve Burgmeier sits on the Workforce Investment board.
“We’re working to get a youth provider at Indian Hills Community College for our 10 counties,” he said.
The region’s previous Workforce Investment youth coordinator left June 30, and this region had been sharing another region’s coordinator.
Supervisor Dick Reed reported on progress of the building north of the courthouse, which formerly housed Department of Human Services. The county owns the building and it is being renovated for use as the Jefferson County Attorney’s Office.
“I met with the contractor and demolition is nearly completed,” he said. “When the building is ready and the county attorney moves, we’ll sell the current office.
“In renovating, the building’s two electrical services will be consolidated, the handicap ramp will be updated and the building foundation needs to be water-proofed,” said Reed. “The boiler is not that old and works, so that stays, as well as two air-handlers.”
Southeast Iowa Multi-County Solid Waste Agency Landfill increased its tonnage last month, indicating increased business. Reed said. The landfill staff plans an education campaign about recycling.
Reed reported a basement apartment is nearly ready at the welcome center at Maasdam Barns site. A caretaker is needed for the property and can live on the grounds. Reed said anyone wanting to see the approximately 900-foot apartment can contact him.
In regular business, the supervisors:
• Approved a disposal system contractor’s license for Bob Brown Excavating Inc.
• Reappointed three board of health members to serve another term for three years; Dr. Terry Cochran, Melisse Jones and Terry Derby.
Jefferson County Department of Health executive director Chris Estle told supervisors the health aide employed by her department is working nearly 40 hours a week but counted as a half-time employee.
“I discussed this at the last board of health meeting and my board supports my request, to make the health aide position full time and offer insurance benefits,” said Estle.
“It used to be a full-time position, then we cut it back and now I’m needing to increase the hours again because we are helping more patients,” she said. “The position is funded directly form home patient care, so there’s no increase to the county and no need to amend the budget.”
Estle said her department still has about 60 doses of flu vaccine, and it’s not too late to get a flu shot this year.
Jefferson County Deputy Sheriff Gregg Morton said as part of the sheriff’s partnership in the governor’s Safety Traffic Enforcement Program, which is a heightened law enforcement presence during holidays, the department received a $3,500 grant.
“I’ll buy three radars with the grant to give more personnel a radar,” he said.