Supervisors hold pair of regular sessions

by Bob Beach

Last week's Presidents' Day holiday, Monday, February 16, resulted in two meetings for the Allamakee County Board of Supervisors during the past week; the Board met Tuesday, February 17 and then again Monday, February 23 in regular session.
The Board's meeting Tuesday, February 17 covered a short agenda that included approving a letter of engagement with Hacker, Nelson and Company to review the accounts of the County's various departments in order to determine what surplus funds, if any, could be used to help pay for the construction of a new jail and public safety center, and to determine what other options are available to the County to fund the project.
The Board also met with Allamakee County Attorney Jill Kistler, who asked for and received the Board's authorization to advertise for a part-time Victim and Witness Coordinator. Kistler explained that the position had previously been full time, but she had determined that it would be more efficient to eliminate the collection of overdue fines and court fees from the job's duties.
In other business, the Board set Monday, March 2 at 10 a.m. as the date and time for a public hearing regarding vacating some excess road right of way along Iowa River Drive.

During public comment time at the Board's regular meeting Monday, February 23, former Supervisor Sherry Strub reported that her family's seven-year court battle dealing with domestic violence is coming to a close. She said that sentencing in the case would be held April 2, at which time she and her daughters would be allowed to submit victim impact statements. She thanked the Allamakee County Sheriff's Department, in particular Sheriff Clark Mellick and Deputy Tim Smedsrud, and County Attorney Jill Kistler for their work on the case. "The general public has no idea what these guys go through," Strub said.
Also during public comment time, Supervisor Dennis Koenig reported that at a recent meeting of the Northeast Iowa Behavioral Health Board a free suicide prevention training program was demonstrated. He recommended that the training be offered to County employees.
During regular business, Allamakee County Sheriff Clark Mellick reported that he is continuing his efforts to secure a derelict building grant to help fund the demolition of Makee Manor. He also said that the Public Safety Center Committee would be meeting this week to make a recommendation to the Board regarding a special election for a bond referendum to fund the construction of a new jail facility. Allamakee County Auditor Denise Beyer said that the deadline to schedule the election for this May is March 20, with the last meeting of the Board prior to that date scheduled for March 16.
In other business, the Board approved hiring Janel Eglseder to an open position in the Auditor's Office at $17.50 per hour starting February 26. The Board also met with Case Management Administrator Kim Waters, who reviewed the agenda for an upcoming meeting of the County Social Services Board.

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