Commissioners Take Steps To Secure Website

The Mitchell County Commissioners met with Jeff Roberg, IT Advisor for this county during their meeting Monday morning to workout a way to insure better security for the county website. Roberg, the Board of Commissioners and County Clerk, Chris Treaster met in a 15-minute executive session with two five-minute extensions to discuss security measures that needed to be taken.

Following the executive meeting Chairman, Jim Marshall announced that although no decisions had been made a conscientious of opinions had been made to change the county website to a governmental entity by going to a dot-com site instead of a dot-net site domain. The cost of doing this is $125 a year and commissioners feel the extra security is worth the change. Commissioner Tom Claussen moved they make this change and apply for an application to be allowed to do this. The motion passed.

After their meeting with Roberg, the commission also moved to set up an Internet usage policy. They will have County Attorney, Mark J. Noah look at the policy they have set up and formalize it into a policy to be put in the employee handbook. After the policy is implemented all county employees will be asked to sign off on it, putting everyone using the website on the honor system. The commissioners will put this to a vote after the final wording of the policy is in place.

Ed Debesis, Emergency Medical Services Director met with commissioners to discuss his monthly report for December and an overall report on the department's activities for the past year. The total amount of used fee charged for December was $17,508.00 and $389,590.94 for the year. The total cash taken in for December was $26,693.60 and $265,421.41. The total ambulance runs for December was 23 which is the lowest number ever recorded. The total runs for the year, however, were 610 which is up from 584 runs the year before.

Debesis explained the various charges made for ambulance runs and the reason each is made. One of the changes this coming year will be if they go out on a diabetic or respiratory run anytime they have to administer medications there will be a $200 charge. He said people are going to see more and more changes in costs as the Obamacare plan comes into play. There are times when people don't need an ambulance if their vital signs are all right that the EMT's will tell people this and they can choose to go by car or not go at all because their insurance will no longer pay for this.

Debesis said the department's response time for the year to get out of the station after they get the notification is seventy-four percent. It is the State law they have to keep track of this. Twenty percent of the time they are out of the station in two to three minutes. They have only had to make one run to the airport since the helipad has been put into use. 32 percent of the people using the ambulance are on Medicare, 20 percent on private insurance, 3.44 percent are on Medicaid and 33 percent are unknown, refusal or stand-up cases. Every run is documents after the unit returns from a run. Chairman Marshall congratulated Debesis and said these were pretty impressive numbers and thanked him for the good job his department is doing. Commissioner Claussen and Mike Cooper also extended their thanks. Debesis said the new Chevy ambulance is running well. He already did all the State required inspections on all the equipment this last week that are usually done in April.

Larry Emerson, Public Works, brought in the only concrete bid he received for county concrete from January 1 through March 31. This was a bid from Beloit Ready Mix on six sack 300 percent rock at $116 per cubic yard. The bid was approved. Emerson asked for a 30-minute time period next week to have Casey Frasier of Salina Caterpillar come in and visit about some equipment. This was granted.

Emerson said they are finished graveling Asherville roads and have Honey Lane north of there yet to do. Big trucks run over this road everyday and they can't put on gravel in zero weather. They plan to do roads north of Scottsville next. They have the new truck in service now. Chairman Marshall the biggest question he gets is if they got the posts put back on the Waconda Lake causeway. Emerson said they have used cedar-guard rail posts that run $26 to $28 each. They couldn't do as much was they had planned since the county didn't get the grant they applied for to do the work.

Commissioner Cooper reported a member of the Beloit City Council approached him about the status of the road north of the county yard driveway. He wasn't sure why this person asked the question. This is the road south of where Tim Hager had his shop that runs from South Hwy 14 over to old Hwy. 24 and ends up on River Street. It runs right along the railroad tracks right of way. This person wanted to know who was responsible for this road and whom that strip actually belongs to.

Emerson said this has been there for many years and he thought the city and county take turns maintaining it. It used to just be a dirt road before it was graveled and then asphalt was added. It has always been a public road as far as anyone can remember and gets a lot of use by service trucks and people traveling to and from work. Some thought it might actually belong to the railroad. Commissioner Claussen said he thought when a road has been used as this had for so many years it is just considered a public road. All agreed it is in pretty good shape and receives a lot of traffic every day. No decision was called for since this was a discussion only item.

Stan Deneke, newly appointed Noxious Weed Supervisor for the county, brought in some papers to be signed to formally make his appointment official. He took all three necessary tests last week and should hear back soon as to whether he passed. Commissioners signed the appointment papers.

Sandra Hone, Mitchell County Health Department brought in Family Planning Contracts for 2014 to be signed for Physicians, Dr. Kris Kimple, MD and Dr. Jason Cheney, MD. The two doctors' take turns conducting Family Planning meetings at the facility. Dr. Kimple is actually the official County Health Officer.

Commissioners Marshall and Claussen attended US Senator Jerry Moran's Town Hall Meeting last week and found it very entertaining and informative. They felt the Senator is a very dedicated man. They estimated 70 to 75 people attended the meeting.

The Commissioners will meet on Tuesday, January 21, next week since the courthouse will be closed on Monday for Martin Luther King Day.

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