County supes inquire about city’s role in EMS, tweak open records policy

The county supervisors broached the subject of emergency medical services when Jefferson city administrator Mike Palmer gave his courtesy monthly update Monday morning.

Palmer talked about work on various downtown buildings and on the Highway 4 resurfacing project. He said the street is prepped but the actual resurfacing is weather-dependent. Work on curbs and sidewalk approaches is continuing despite the wet weather.

Palmer also asked if a county supervisor or county staff would be willing to participate with him and city council member Larry Teeples on the Highway 30 Coalition. Supervisor Tom Contner said he’d be willing to listen on the next Coalition conference call.

After Palmer finished his update, Contner asked if the city would be a partner with the county and perhaps Greene County Medical Center to support EMS.

Palmer said the city “would be willing to look at it. We have to see what the numbers are.”
Contner said 50 percent of the EMS calls are from Jefferson residents.

Board chair John Muir said the county wants to give all parties a voice in decision-making. Muir said he and supervisor Pete Bardole wanted to speak with the mayor “to touch base with him, get it out there on the table. It needs to be addressed. As we put it off, it just gets more and more immediate.”

In agenda business, the supervisors reviewed an open records policy for the supervisors and all departments that answer to them. (Departments headed by an elected official will have their own policy.) The draft was prepared by assistant county attorney Thomas Laehn.

After comments by county engineer Wade Weiss and drainage clerk Michelle Fields, the supervisors sent the draft back for small revisions. The draft policy called for a 10 or 15-cent charge for every photocopy. Weiss and Fields both said their offices receive many requests for one or two pages, and that the requests are almost always legitimate requests.

The policy will be revised so there will be no charge for the first 25 pages copied. Another addition will be a requirement that when records are requested to be provided on a CD, DVD, or other tangible media device, the county provide the device and charge the requester accordingly.

Wiess reported to the supervisors that “Cross traffic does not stop” signs have been ordered for County Road E-53 on either side of County Road P-14, and for all similar unmarked intersections in the county.

The county crew will repaint the stop bar on P-14 closer to E-53 to give northbound drivers better visibility. In other locations signs have been moved to make STOP signs more visible.

Increased safety signage is in response to a fatal accident on E-53 at P-14 in August.
He also said the weather has created challenges for the bridge replacement project on County Road E-18 in Dawson Township. Water has run over the coffer dam three times and he expects that to happen again this week. The company is bringing in a second crew when the weather changes, but he thinks the bridge may go into winter with temporary approaches to the bridge.

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