HUMAN SERVICES COMMITTEE
Monday, April 11, 2022 - 10:30 AM
JoePete Wilson, Chairperson
Charlie Harrington, Vice-Chairperson
Chairman Wilson called this Human Services Meeting to order at 11:12 am with the following Supervisors in attendance: Clayton Barber, Stephanie DeZalia, Derek Doty, Shaun Gillilland, Charlie Harrington, Roy Holzer, Kenneth Hughes, Steve McNally, Noel Merrihew, Jim Monty, Tom Scozzafava, Matt Stanley, Ike Tyler Joe Pete Wilson, Davina Winemiller, Margaret Wood and Mark Wright.† Robin DeLoria and was excused.
Department Heads present: †Linda Beers, Michael Diskin, Dan Palmer, Judy Garrison, Krissy Leerkes, Mike Mascarenas and Terri Morse.†
News Media:† Tim Rowland Ė SUN
WILSON:† Alright, good morning everyone. We are going to call our Human Services committee to order, we are going to try and keep things moving.† Thank you everybody.† First up, weíve got Mike Mascarenas with the Department of Social Services.
Good morning everybody.† I have
resolution declaring April Child
Abuse Prevention Month.
RESOLUTION DECLARING THE MONTH OF APRIL AS CHILD ABUSE PREVENTION MONTH.† Stanley, Doty
WILSON:† All in favor, aye.† Thank you.
MASCARENAS:† In lieu of child abuse prevention month I really would like to extend a thank you to all the employees who worked diligently in our child/family services units, includes Foster Care, Prevent Services, Child Protective Services.† Their dedication to families are really second to none.† I know the day to day grind they go through is really difficult the wins however, do far outweigh the losses and Essex County is a better place for the work they do.† I also want to thank my partners in the audience that work with us not necessarily case by case but are also a part of that system that really protects children so, itís a team effort.† You donít get to hear the work they do because of the nature of the work they do which is unfortunate.† What you hear about are when things are really bad but the things they deal with on a day to day basis would frighten some of you and we never get to bring them in and celebrate the work they do so I want to make sure weíre all aware of that and know that even though we donít know their names and faces necessarily they are important to what we do.
WILSON:† Thank you.
MASCARENAS:† Summer is coming.† Many of you havenít run day camps in the last couple of years.† We sent out an email following the last board meeting asking those of you to let us know what youíre doing for the summer and I understand some of you are still up in the air in terms of that which is fine but we really do need to know.† We have to set up trainings so that all of you can meet the State Department of Health requirements for operations of day camps.† We did have a lifeguard training, we had ten attend so that finally training was on Saturday and weíll get those out to you as soon as we have a list of individuals I know you all struggle to get those positions filled.†
RTE is likely going to be the end of May beginning of June again, I need to know who is going to operate so I can figure out how many hours I need to have somebody there to do the training.† Right now I think Iíve heard from four or five communities on who is going to be operational so itís important that I know.† Same with CPR First Aid weíll run that at the end of June beginning of July weíll go a weekís straight and the days directly correlate to how many people we have attend so once we know whoís going to be operational we can set that up.† You certainly donítí have to use us we do it as really a favor to the towns because there is a lack of training countywide so if you have other trainers that you can utilize in your areas thatís fine youíre just going to want to make sure that youíre getting the proper training so you can meet the permit requirements that DOH is going to have in terms of permitting your day camp and unless anybody has any questions, Iíll get out of here.
WILSON:† Anything for Mike?
SCOZZAFAVA:† Mike on the food program, so as you know, we maybe utilizing BOCES because of construction going on at Moriah Central so itís my understanding that if Moriah wanted to run that program central we canít run it at two locations correct?
MASCARENAS:† You absolutely can.† You can have multiple sites.† I donít know why you would?
SCOZZAFAVA:† Moriah might have summer school going on.
MASCARENAS:† Okay you can absolutely have satellite sites; we have for years in the Town of Moriah.† Moriah would be the primary, Moriah Central School because thatís how Champlain Valley Educational Services certifies their children is through your population that exists in your community so they would be the satellite site in the Town of Moriah. Weíve donít that for a lot of years.† I would think the primary would probably be at CVES because thatís where your kids are going to be, I would think that would be your population that is there.† One thing I think Iím going to do maybe in May is sit down with all of you things have changed in the summer food service program, a lot of the waivers have gone away that you are used to operating under the last couple of years during the pandemic so that process is going to change so for those of you who are going to operate a summer food service program I would like to have a separate meeting in the side so we can go through what you want to do, whatís allowable, whatís unallowable and that kind of thing.
SCOZZAFAVA:† Thank you.
WILSON: Any other questions for Mike?
HUGHES:† I have a question about outstanding revenue, are we in the margins?
MASCARENAS: Oh, what are we?
MASCARENAS:† When I was reporting this, before we were about 3.5, Iíve kept it going because now I want to be aware so I put it in every month so that the board is also aware.† You know, anywhere from one to two million is kind of a normal cycle in terms of the State giving us our money back in a timely fashion and it was a problem before we were at $3.5 million and that was getting just a little bit too much and I think us talking about it here at the board with the news media really helped that process along in terms of getting some of those dollars so thank you.
HUGHES:† Thank you.
WINEMILLER:† Iím not on this committee but I do have a question for Mike regarding summer programs and Iím going to ask it here because it might affect other towns that might be trying to do the same thing so the Town of St. Armand we were going to partner with the Town of Harrietstown now the Town of Harrietstown has decided to partner with the YMCA so I just wanted to verify that the funds that we normally get from Essex County to help us run the summer program, we can use those funds to partner with the YMCA?
MASCARENAS:† Absolutely. The funds that you get from us would be anything you have costs within your community regarding the youth so you can absolutely use them whether you operate a summer day camp or not you could be running activities at various times during the year so if youíre choosing to do that would absolutely be reimbursed for it.
WINEMILLER:† Right so we planned on giving $5,000 to the YMCA and that would reduce the cost for the St. Armand residents that brought their children there.
MASCARENAS:† That would be fine.† We would pay you, we would not be paying the YMCA.† We would reimburse you your cost regarding what you provide for your young people.
WINEMILLER:† Okay, thank you.
PALMER:† We would just need a contract defining it with the YMCA.
WINEMILLER:† Contract with the YMCA, okay.
WILSON:† Any other questions?† Alright, thank you very much.
MASCARENAS:† Thank you guys.
WILSON:† Next up is Mental Health and Terri Morse.
MORSE:† Good morning everyone. I have a fair amount of resolutions today to go through but Iím just going to give one quick, highlight and a thank you.† Last time I was here the Building Resilience in Essex Families (BRIEF Coalition) made a presentation, I really want to thank you for your time to do that.† As a result, of the presentation and sort of the level setting of what BRIEF is I will be providing updates every month about what we have accomplished in the prior month so what weíre looking at doing right now in the month of May when itís Mental Health Month by the way, is we are hosting a school counselor summit so every school counselor team across Essex County schools are invited to a six-hour day where they can learn about the various Essex County programs so Families First will be there, Public Health will be there, Mental Health, DSS, etc. etc. so that we will help improve, not that we have poor communications between schools and Essex County providers but I think we can always improve and so weíre hoping that weíll do that.†
So, without further ado letís go to resolutions.† Iím going to go through the packet as is numbered so my first resolution is we would like to contract with the insurance company CIGNA now Evernorth so that we can improve our patient fee reimbursement.† Right now we donít have a contract so we have to kind of take what they give us.
RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE COUNTY CHAIRMAN OR COUNTY MANAGER TO EXECUTE A CONTRACT WITH CIGNA/EVERNORTH FOR PATIENT FEE REIMBURSEMENT IN THE MENTAL HEALTH DEPARTMENT.† Hughes, Doty
WILSON:† Any questions?† All in favor, aye, any opposed Ė motion carries. Thank you.
MORSE:† We would like to restructure the way that we are providing psychiatric services at our organization and so we would like to add a psychiatric nurse practitioner at a rate of $139.00 an hour whereas a psychiatrist is $220.00 an hour so we would like to, weíre going to do some transitioning and we would like to add a contract with InnovaTel for a child based psychiatrist, sorry, nurse practitioner.
RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE COUNTY CHAIRMAN OR COUNTY MANAGER TO EXECUTE A CONTRACT WITH INNOVATEL FOR A PSYCHIATRIC NURSE PRACTIONER IN THE MENTAL HEALTH DEPARTMENT, AT A RATE OF $139.00 AN HOUR.† Wood, Wright
WILSON:† Any questions?† All in favor, aye, any opposed Ė motion carries. Thank you.
MORSE:† The BRIEF coalition is in its second year and in the first year we did not exhaust all of the available funding so they gave us an opportunity to look at maybe some things that we wanted to do or we didnít get to do or now that youíve been in this for one year what did you wish you had put in your contract?† So they allowed us to look at our year one carryover and create additional initiatives so our year-two contract is increasing by year-one, carryover funding so I have a resolution to increase our revenues and appropriations for that amount of $187,910.00.
RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING A BUDGET AMENDMENT IN THE MENTAL HEALTH DEPARTMENT, INCREASING REVENUES AND APPROPRIATIONS IN THE AMOUNT OF $187,910.00, 2021 CARRYOVER SAMHSA GRANT.† Stanley, Hughes
WILSON:† Any questions?
DOTY:† How does money come back with that extra that is a carryover, does it have to be spent before itís reimbursed?
DOTY:† Always?† Okay.
MORSE:† Yes, I have to voucher that funding.
WILSON:† Any further questions?† All in favor aye, any opposed Ė motion carries, thank you.
MORSE:† So, Iím really glad that resolution came before the next two because the next two resolutions are direct results of year one carryover funding.† So in resolution #4, we are going to be contracting with an organization called Coordinated Services and BRIEF will be implementing a countywide, county provider wide trauma informed training in the amount of $11,000.00.
RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE COUNTY CHAIRMAN OR COUNTY MANAGER TO EXECUTE A CONTRACT WITH COORDINATED CARE SERVICES, INC. AND BRIEF FOR IMPLEMENTING TRAUMA-RESPONSIVE PRACTICES TRANING AND CONSULTING IN THE MENTAL HEALTH DEPARTMENT, IN THE AMOUNT OF $11,000.00.† Doty, Hughes
WILSON:† Any questions?† All in favor aye, any opposed Ė motion carries, thank you.
MORSE:† Additionally resolution #5, is to contract with an organization out of the Lake Placid region called Great Range.† Great Range is going to be preparing some marketing materials for us.† We might even do some videos, other kinds of training materials.† They are also helping us coordinate and plan that school counselor summit and so a resolution in the amount of $29,000, to use that year-one carryover.
RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE COUNTY CHAIRMAN OR COUNTY MANAGER TO EXECUTE A CONTRACT WITH GREAT RANGE FOR THE PLANNING AND COORDINATION OF THE 2022 SCHOOL COUNSELOR SUMMIT IN THE MENTAL HEALTH DEPARTMENT, IN THE AMOUNT OF $29,000.00.† Wright, Wood
WILSON:† Any questions?
HUGHES:† How is Great Range selected to perform this work?
MORSE:† There was a very short period of time that we had to put this funding opportunity together, Great Range has worked with other departments in our county and HAPEC they work with and so we selected them because of reputation and availability and also experience.
HUGHES:† Thank you.
WILSON:† Any further questions?† All in favor aye, any opposed Ė motion carries, thank you.
MORSE:† Essex County Mental Health is receiving an unsolicited $25,000 grant from Office of Mental Health to expand our mobile crisis services, our currently existing, mobile crisis services.
RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING A BUDGET AMENDMENT IN THE MENTAL HEALTH DEPARTMENT INCREASING REVENUES AND APPROPRIATIONS IN THE AMOUNT OF $25,000.00, FROM OFFICE OF MENTAL HEALTH TO EXPAND MOBILE CRISIS SERVICES.† Wood, Harrington
WILSON:† Any questions?
HUGHES:† For lack of a better term, are there any strings attached to this unsolicited $25,000?
MORSE: No.† Iíve looked over the funding language and there are restrictions about what we canít use it for.† All the restrictions are for things that I would never even think about doing so itís really just to expand our services.† Our plan is to increase our staffing that we already have in place to increase their ability to mobilize right now they are doing more phone services but weíd like to increase just the ability to go out in the field.
PALMER:† What happens when the $25,000 is gone?
MORSE:† Well, it is a billable, reimbursable service for Medicaid managed care so the point of the expansion funding is to help us increase our mobile crisis services so that we can get insurance reimbursement for those services.
WILSON:† Alright, any further questions?† All in favor, aye, any opposed Ė motion carries thank you.
MORSE:† Those were good questions.† And the last one is like the CIGNA, we would like to contract with a company called, an insurance company called Tricare for our patient fee reimbursement.
RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE COUNTY CHAIRMAN OR COUNTY MANAGER TO EXECUTE A CONTRACT WITH TRICARE FOR PATIENT FEE REIMBURSEMENT IN THE MENTAL HEALTH DEPARTMENT.† Wright, Harrington
WILSON: Any questions?
GILLILLAND:† Tricare, those are Military Veterans, Reserve, National Guard.
MORSE: Thank you.† Yes.
WILSON:† Any further questions?† All in favor, aye, any opposed Ė motion carries thank you.
MORSE: And their families so honestly we donít serve a lot of them Veterans in our organization, they tend to utilize VA services but their families do receive services.† That concludes my pile of resolutions.†
WILSON:† Thank you very much. Any final questions?† Alright thank you.
MORSE: Thank you very much.
WILSON:† And now Public Health and Linda Beers.
BEERS:†† Good morning.† Iím going to go over my report quickly and then I have two resolutions that Iím moving, itís a budget resolution so we can move through that kind of quickly.
My first page of my report, you get this in color is that correct Judy?
GARRISON:† No they do not.
BEERS:† So these donít really do that well without being in color, Iím going to have to work on that.† I will send the email in color, it helps when you see it.† Anyway I was just pointing out the change, Jessica Darney-Buehler wrote this piece and I just thought it was fabulous.† You know a solid two years and people were more than ready to get back to normal.† The Covid fatigue has set in and experts continue to study the evolution of the virus to determine how many changes continue to shape recommendations to ensure public health and safety.
So, in the first wave it really showed clearly that we were alpha and lota which in July we were at the Delta variant so Jess does a really great job on depicting where we are now and so we just point that out for your information.
On the second page we talk about how many people are vaccinated in Essex county and we are about 75% of those eligible and completed their primary dose and we are low on our booster and I donít mean the second booster, I mean the first booster so you know, we just point out.† I tell people all the time and I give you all the options please feel free to choose for yourself right?† So the highest percentage of people complete the primary series of boosters are those age 60 and older that is not by accident, that is the good work of Krissy Leerkes.† Right now my office is filled, sheís called everybody for Office for the Aging and told people that they could come in and get the second booster, the phones are ringing, the people are coming itís a coordinated effort that continually goes on in Essex County and I can tell you repeatedly I donít work a vacuum, I work with every department head here and itís an honor to do so.
Vaccine recommendations Ė I donít think thereís anything new there.† They prefer Moderna and Pfizer over J&J but J&J is still being offered. Being fully vaccinated remains defined as having completed the primary series that was two doses of Moderna, 2 doses of Pfizer, one of J&J and I tell you that terminology changes where youíve go on a cruise ship they might not use that terminology, they may require a booster so I am saying the CDC says that but not everybody else.† So the second booster is being offered today at the Public Health Department, we have a long wait of people already signed up.† If you have to be 50 years or older or immune compromised.† The below chart is showing we are in low transmissibility rate right now.
The next page just goes on to, just talks about core public health and you can read that.
PALMER: Slow down we have a question.
SCOZZAFAVA:† On the booster, is there a time frame like if you had Covid you would have to wait before you can get it?
BEERS:† Four months since your first booster can you get the second booster.
PALMER: Yeah, but heís asking after Covid.
SCOZZAFAVA:† No, Iím saying if you had Covid.† I had Covid do I have to wait?
BEERS:† 90 days so there was that recommendation for 90 days but that has been waived, as soon as your symptoms are free you can get the booster or any vaccine so there is no longer a wait. The answer to your question is no, there is no longer a wait you can feel free to get the booster right away.
HARRINGTON:† Am I correct in understanding that the only place to get your second booster is at the county?
BEERS:† No they offer it at pharmacies and primary care practices.
HARRINGTON:† Thatís the new booster?
BEERS:† Yes, itís the same vaccine, itís the same dose so everybody should have this.
HARRINGTON:† It was a big misunderstanding on my part.
BEERS:† Iím sure if you misunderstood so did other people, thank you for the question.
SCOZZAFAVA: I canít get it.
PALMER: Sure you can.
BEERS: You can get it.
SCOZZAFAVA: No because if I understand what you just said I received my booster in January so Ė
PALMER:† Awe, give it to him anyways what can it hurt?†
SCOZZAFAVA: Iím full of antibodies and anti-everything.
MONTY:† Youíre full of something. (laughter)
BEERS:† And how appropriate the middle of this page talks about the Governments and how you are all the Board of Health in case you wanted to know and especially I think Jess put this in here for new members.† What it is your authority and how it affects public health.
I think this is a really good example of what is pandemic and what is endemic and why weíre not considering endemic right now because endemic diseases are predictable and static.† This virus is anything but predictable or static.† It continues to vary and we would like to say we know about it and everything is holding but we know thatís not true I couldnít say that, right?† So, until we get that and itís less severe, we know that but endemic again is predictable and weíre working towards that.
Just moving along, the New York State Department of Virtual call center update since January 2022, New York State has been scaling down employees so in the past, weíve used whatís called the VCC, the Virtual Call Center and that was through New York State as of April 29, they will be completely gone all the employees will be gone and all the calls will be done by the Essex County Health Department once again how we started, we end. So on May 1st every person who is positive all those folks will get support from our department and our department solely as the State backs out of that and then there is talking about Covid response and funding updates.† Covid funds currently allow for $2.5 employees thatís who weíll use to continue that and we have some other grants that you already approved and one was the Fellows Grant and we have new positions posting for them and you can see it there.
I really wanted to talk about Early Intervention today and that, in 2021 we supported 52 children, 69 referrals.† We have a waiting list, 8 for speech, 8 for special Ed and two for physical therapy but probably more importantly right now and thereís a real change to Early Intervention, the legislation established a coved lives pool funded by the assessment of insurance plans so poo funding will offset the municipal and State share.† Weíve been billing or attempting to bill private insurance for a long time to no avail so this should help in our unbelievable high costs at all the county pays for Early Intervention so weíll see how that works out.† Jim Monty brought up this last week, and Iím thankful for that.† Childrenís Development Group is closing.† She wrote the county the letter and expressed that. I have been working diligently with all of our public schools and Mountain Lake Services to try to create at least two programs in our area. This will be a crisis for our county.† They currently support sixteen students, these are children in pre-school that have special needs and it will require, this is a mandated service it is three to five year olds. Currently the agency provides for evaluation to establish eligibility for EI and Pre-school related services such as occupational therapy, physical therapy and speech.† Last year, CDG completed 46% of all preschool core evaluations which is 40 out of 86 of them done, this organization did remember they are leaving.† Our department is working with CDG current staff to plan continued service provisions so far four of the staff there have reached out and received information on how to become independent providers as well as weíre in the process of surveying the schools and existing agencies to establish with them the need for a center Ėbased program.† I met with all the schools last Tuesday, every school it was on a zoom and I went over them and I had a representative from another school district from Franklin County who runs these programs within the school, I had a State representative on and really imploring school districts are ultimately responsible for creating this pre-school class and itís the countyís responsibility to have a list and pay for it but their responsibility is to do that so weíre really, really, really emphasizing to the schools they need to look at creating Special ED in their own classrooms and their own schools.† So weíre keeping our fingers crossed but trust me, Iím on the phone with all of them trying to handhold anybody that is interested in doing it and to give you an idea their special Ed and SEIS services and speech services is our biggest need.† We have 13 children right now waiting for a provider, 8 of those in Moriah, 10 of those are waiting for speech.† So, again, I will continue to talk about pre-school services CDG stays in place until June and then we would of normally had summer services we will work for the providers we have but we hope to have a pre-school classroom too set up by the beginning of the school year to get those kiddos where they need to be.
MONTY:† Linda, ACAP is also working on that as well.† We have a plan that maybe coming to fruition for the Lewis School.
BEERS: So itís a Special ED itinerary classroom?
MONTY:† Weíre working.
BEERS: I would appreciate coordination only because Ė
MONTY:† So would we, so would we with what youíre doing we would appreciate being in the middle of it too.† Not just leave it as it is in Lewis but we are working on it.
BEERS: Okay.† Alright so Iím inviting all the schools and Mountain Lake Services and the Special Ed people that have contracts with us but I certainly will work with Alan to look at that as a day care provider and pre-school services absolutely. Iíd be happy to reach out to him and do that.† So we do have some school districts interested in doing it and we can discuss that.† Sounds like a plan.
The other thing I wanted to really just touch on quickly and Iím sorry for the long report, is family health.† Family Connects is a program that weíre talking about, itís under the Public Health is Where You Are, last week was Public Health Week before that, I should tell you rabies is back and we have our rabies clinics out and the calendar should have been out to everybody and we have five hub sites in our community locations include Ticonderoga, Moriah, Keeseville, Lake Placid and Schroon Lake.† Pre-registration is possible but you can drive in. We were really successful last year with our drive up services we had one in North Hudson that saw tons of people.
The next thing I wanted to talk about is Family Connects.† Family Connects is a universal home visiting program that is in consideration for the Essex County Health Department.† Itís an evidenced-based program and itís comprehensive and much of the work will need to be under taken to get this program up and running.† This home visiting program is birth to newborns so this is the newborn which we used to formally call maternal child health so this is an evidence based program out of Duke University.† Iím working with Mike Mascarenas and BRIEF, we believe itís a universal meeting we know risk assess.† Moms gets calls and we go out only when people have identified the risk, universal assessment we offer to every single mom who has a baby in Essex County and we go out. This is an evidence based practice done by an RN with specific protocols and itís a phenomenal opportunity to refer them further to services or say, hey mom, you got this youíre doing everything right.† So weíll be talking more about that and the timing as we move forward thereís a cost to this program and Iím looking to see how I might fund that to keep this going.† So, stay tuned for that.† And on that I wanted to just share, this is a program that Adirondack Health Foundation worked with WIC and these packets go out to every new mom, thereís books in here, thereís flyers in here thereís all these wonderful books and information for mom and thereís a onesie for baby and moms have been really, really receptive.† We have one of these for every new mom in Essex County and our nurse is going out and delivering them as is Early Intervention or Pre-school services whoever is out there first gets to that.† And Iím going to read the resolution.
So I have two resolutions this is DSRIP money, DSRIP funds in the amount of $965,353.78, Iím moving them forward into this year to increase the budget appropriations for 2022.
RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING A BUDGET AMENDMENT IN THE PUBLIC HEALTH DEPARTMENT INCREASING REVENUES AND APPROPRIATIONS IN THE AMOUNT OF $965,353.78, 2021 CARRY OVER DSRIP FUNDS.† Stanley, Wood
WILSON:† Any questions?† All in favor, aye, any opposed Ė motion carries.
BEERS:† And the next is unused revenue from Recruitment and Retention funds from Medicaid R&R in the amount of $26,131.12.
RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING A BUDGET AMENDMENT IN THE PUBLIC HEALTH DEPARTMENT INCREASING REVENUES AND APPROPRIATIONS IN THE AMOUNT OF $26,131.12, 2021 CARRY OVER RECRUITMENT & RETENTION FUNDS.† Wright, Wood
WILSON:† Any questions?† All in favor, aye, any opposed Ė motion carries.† Anything else for Public Health?
HARRINGTON:† Yes, youíve said that thereís a waiting list now you only have a certain amount of time in which these services are offered and then these students, these children will be going to kindergarten without that necessary education that will allow them to be successful in kindergarten so whatís happening here?
BEERS:† Weíve always historically in every community around here in rural areas has always had somewhat of a waiting list.† It spiked up through Covid. We had providers that retired and no new ones coming in.† Thereís a cost, we donít set the cost the State of New York sets the cost for many of these things. The price that we can pay, thatís one hurdle obviously Covid really took its tool with lots of folks not wanting to go in a home and some people stopped doing practices.† Weíre trying to work hard to get them back but even if we solicited everybody right now weíre running short and weíre really working really hard to get PTís, OTís, speech pathologist and so is every hospital, so is every school district, so is everybody everywhere thatís been really important for us to work hard with our school districts to consider doing a center base classroom in the school because they own their own PTís and OTís and speech pathologist and that would help.† We are also working with our schools to contract with us to do those services with their staff outside of the school but yeah, Charlie itís a serious, serious problem.† C-Ed services which are Special ED itinerary teachers, they cannot hang a shingle meaning they cannot work under their own license they must work under an agency so Mountain Lake Services just hired one last week so weíre really looking forward to getting that person up and going.† It really doesnít take ten people it takes one of the right people willing to travel or somebody who can do part-time in many areas thatís what it looks like in our county.
HARRINGTON:† Iíve never witnessed a greater payback in education than early intervention because most of these kids come in classified and by the time they are ready for kindergarten they are declassified or Special ED needs so the importance really has to be looked at very closely. Now I also understood that perhaps there are some school districts that do not offer pre-school am I correct?
BEERS: In Essex County right now I believe all of our school districts have either UPK or are using other programs like ACAP is offering UPK programs as well so I believe every school district in Essex County has pre-k or some form of it.
HARRINGTON:† Okay, thanks.
BEERS:† Your welcome.
WILSON:† Anything else for Linda?† Thank you very much.† We have Office for the Aging, Krissy Leerkes.
LEERKES:† I was hoping to say good afternoon but itís still morning so I will get you out of here before the afternoon I promise you that. So, you have a copy of my report and our newsletter.† Just a couple of updates weíre working with Miss Linda from Cornell before she departs to her next chapter on our container garden project so for new supervisors, this is a garden in a bucket if you will for older adults who still are able and want to maintain some form of gardening but maybe their mobility or health is not allowing that, maybe they have been relocated, they donít have the space so itís something that we look forward to its fun every year.† Cornell does a great job with their master gardeners to provide those garden buckets for us.
Last month, Dan had presented our next initiative with Creative Aging so we are rolling out two additional classes, one will start at the end of this month which is an introduction to water colors which weíve had a lot of older adultsí request that so weíre excited to provide that and then it will go into a second series of drawing so thatís something that weíll take over through I believe it ends in the end of July or August.†
I have one resolution and this is to accept $85,000 from New York State Office for the Aging for unmet needs money.† This is something that about five, six years ago the State looked at the waiting list across the whole State for all the Office for the Aging and at that time we kind of came in, we had a lot of money kind of still in the pool so we were able to deplete our waiting list so this is the first time that weíre actually being able to access this money but it really is to meet unmet needs so if there is a waiting list for somebody that needs so if there is a waiting list for somebody that needs home health aides or lifeline or transportation be that, whether itís a funding issue or boots on the ground not having direct line service or somebody to provide that service we can look at how we can use these funds to meet that need.† It also can be outside the box of not just a direct service, like I said, home delivered meals, transportation so on and so forth.† One county actually used this funding to help offset a chair lift for an individual that lived in a second story apartment building that had major mobility issues and fortunately because they had that stair lift, I believe it was installed and a couple of months later the actual apartment building caught on fire and this stair lift is actually what saving this gentlemenís life so the stair lift is gone but a life was saved so itís really a bucket of money to meet those needs that really canít be met otherwise.† So weíll be putting together a plan in place on how to use these funds and countyís that received it in the past they actually, you know itís a growing pot of money for them so going forward is the hope and attention to have this money continue to grow as the needs increase.
RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE OFFICE FOR THE AGING TO ACCEPT $85,000.00, FROM NEW YORK STATE OFFICE FOR THE AGING TO PROVIDE SERVICES FOR UNMET NEEDS OF OLDER ADULTS WITH NO COUNTY MATCH, AND FURTHER AUTHORIZING A BUDGET AMENDMENT INCREASING REVENUES AND APPROPRIATIONS FOR THE SAME.† Scozzafava, Stanley
WILSON:† Any questions?† All in favor, aye, any opposed Ė motion carries.† Anything else for Krissy?
LEERKES: I will add, like Linda said, anybody we donít care if they are 18 or 100 or in between, if somebody needs access to a vaccine we will do whatever we can to get them registered so never hesitate to give us a call.
WILSON:† Thank you very much.
LEEKES:† Thank you.
WILSON:† Anything else to come before?
MONTY: I should of mentioned this when I was talking about Broadband before, I donít know if you are aware of the FCC grant is out there for schools and libraries.†† Several schools have reached out within the district and are participating in it the primary focus on the grant is to provide tablets, hotspots, other needs for students to get their internet service but also in that is a caveat for emergency service where they will fund projects in your communities to extend the wire, to possibly even look at someone like Jason Guzzo at Hudson Valley Wireless to come in.† Iíve reached out to Boquet Valley.† Boquet Valley has used some of that in the past but weíre meeting on Wednesday to discuss them partnering.† You have to partner with your school district in order to apply for this. The application process opens up the end of April and runs until the middle of May. We would have to get a letter of interest in so if itís something you want to check with your communities I think we could look at Essex County as a whole instead of an individual school districts and communities.† I think I sent out the information on it, if not I will send it on that.† Thank you.
WILSON:† Anything else?
PALMER:† Just a reminder, Wednesday, 9:00 a.m. in this room the auditors will be here to go over the American Recovery Fund Reporting.† If you bring your financial people maybe you can get any questions answered that you may have as it relates to that.
WILSON:† Alright I will adjourn this meeting.†
††††††††††† As there was no further discussion to come before this Human Services Committee it was adjourned at 11:52 a.m.
Judith Garrison, Clerk
Board of Supervisors