(04/16/2011)
The fall-out from critical budget cuts to maintain the operation of Calhoun government surfaced this week at a county commission meeting.

Before emergency hires of part-time employees, the already shoe-string staff used by the county's elected officials dropped to ten, following resignations and a dismissal.

The commission has been unable to fund a caretaker for the county park, with Butch Burch assuming the position as custodian of the courthouse, replacing Eddie Harris, who retired.

911 employees are mostly paid by a state funding stream.

Two County Clerk employees, Danielle Stevens and Amanda Oldham resigned.

Lisa Stilgenbauer, an employee of Circuit Clerk Shelia Garretson, was dismissed from her position.

Circuit Clerk Garretson advised the commission she had hired Shari Johnson as Chief Deputy, as Stilgenbauer's replacement.

Commissioners went into an executive session to discuss a number of personnel issues.

Following the executive session, commissioners advised Garretson that protocol based on policy in the county handbook required the posting of a job vacancy be done for one week in-house, followed by a public posting in the newspaper.

The commissioners approved the resignations of Stevens and Oldham from the County Clerk's office.

They approved an emergency part-time hiring by Circuit Clerk Garretson of Shari Johnson and the emergency-part time hiring of Sare Fulks by County Clerk Ritchie, to assist with the upcoming election.

The commission approved a request from the Sheriff to pay Melissa Falls from a home confinement account.

The commission, because of financial shortfalls, have had to reduce county employee benefits, ask elected officials to reduce their budgets, eliminate discretionary spending, further unable to give any pay increases or bonuses for the last two years.

Other actions:

- Nicut resident Kenny Metz spoke to the commission about problems he is encountering in erecting a modular home on his property, indicating FEMA's flood plain map is causing him problems, saying FEMA has changed the flood plain lines.

The company from which Metz purchased the modular home will not place the structure on Metz's foundation until the matter can be cleared.

Metz told the commission that Flood Plain Coordinator Gary Buchanan has not visited the site, that the matter has been ongoing since last fall. Commissioners told Metz they would contact Buchanan.

- Norma Collins was approved to be on the LK RC&D board.

- Problems regarding three-phase electric for newly installed air conditioning in the courthouse, funded by a grant, are working toward resolution, said County Clerk Mike Ritchie.

- Tim Meeks of the Mid-Ohio Valley Regional Council advised the commission that ten individuals appeared at a public meeting last week, interested in participating in a new round of flood mitigation buy-outs.

- The commission approved a resolution for the certification of the LKADC, presented by Diane Ludwig, and also accepted an audit from that group.

- The commission approved a resolution for Fair Housing Month.


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