Supervisors provided with update from Historical Preservation Commission, approve contract option with Compliancy Group

by Joe Moses

The Allamakee County Board of Supervisors met in regular session Monday, February 11. During Public Comment, Chairperson Gloria Payne of the Allamakee County Historical Preservation Commission provided an overview of the organization’s activities, indicating that it was a good year. Payne discussed the organization’s Annual Report, which is being added to the February 18 Board of Supervisors meeting agenda. She also indicated that there is a vacancy on the seven-person commission.

Payne discussed a presentation that took place January 24 with Brennan Dolan, Cultural Resource Project Manager with the Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT), that involved discussion of the Black Hawk Bridge in Lansing. Payne also discussed the Commission’s involvement in the Christmas Fantasy event with a tree decorated with 90 laminated photos of country schools. She indicated the viewing of the country schools DVD in April at the theater was well attended. Payne also advised of the Commission’s partnership with the Allamakee County Museum regarding a country school event being planned to take place in May at the Waukon City Park.

Executive Director Val Reinke with Allamakee County Economic Development (ACED) discussed the Iowa Tourism Conference that took place in Altoona February 6-8. Reinke indicated that she and District 56 State Representative Anne Osmundson were in attendance and were able to discuss and ask questions of various travel and tourism organizations. Reinke also discussed her involvement with the seven-county Northeast Iowa Tourism Group, serving as chairperson for over a year, and campaigns promoting area businesses and attractions. Reinke advised that ACED received an award for Outstanding Social Media Execution.

The Supervisors moved into the next agenda item involving the consideration of signing the Compliancy Group agreement. Previously, Allamakee County Auditor Denise Beyer had discussed at the January 28 Supervisors meeting that she has been gathering information about consultants in anticipation of updating the County’s policy to meet changing requirements of the Office of Civil Rights (OCR) regarding medical information and data security related to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).

At the February 4 Supervisors meeting, Beyer discussed utilizing the services of a consultant to assist in updating the policy and with implementation and training. At that meeting, Beyer provided a recommendation of Compliancy Group, LLC with headquarters in Greenlawn, NY at $2,600 per year as a HIPAA compliance consultant, which was approved by the Supervisors.

At the February 11 meeting, Beyer provided information related to two different agreement options from Compliancy Group with a one-year agreement and a one-year agreement with the option of two years of auto-renewal. Beyer recommended the one-year agreement with the option of two years of auto-renewal, indicating that cancellation of services is an option by providing 30-days notice. The Supervisors approved the Compliancy Group one-year agreement with the option of two years of auto-renewal.

Under Department Head Updates, Allamakee County Emergency Management Coordinator Corey Snitker discussed the current weather forecast, a winter storm warning and that he will forwarding more information following a webinar with the La Crosse, WI National Weather Service. Snitker provided an update on the planning involved for a tabletop exercise and full-scale exercise that will be taking place in New Albin. Snitker also discussed an upcoming Emergency Management Commission budget hearing and that legislation related to emergency management is being followed by the Commission.

Allamakee County Engineer Brian Ridenour provided an update on discussions taking place at the State level and with the Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT) regarding the use of white and blue lights to be associated with snowplows. Ridenour discussed the expense associated with that potential change and advised waiting to see if that becomes the standard of other counties in Iowa before making that change with its associated costs.

Ridenour also indicated that recent weather conditions have kept the Secondary Roads Department busy. He also discussed the planning and scheduling of the next Six-County meeting and provided an update about the new telecommunications tower.

Beyer indicated that the budget notice will be sent to the newspaper yet this week to be published February 20 with the Public Hearing to be held March 4. Beyer also discussed conference calls that will be involved in working with Compliancy Group consultants in updating medical information and data security policies and training.

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