The St. Joseph County Board of Commissioners has opted to stick with tradition and continue to provide two periods for ‘Citizens Comments’ during board meetings.
A proposal to “revise board rules” to eliminate the first of the periods for public comments – located toward the beginning of the agenda – was considered by the board during its regular meeting Tuesday (June 7th).
In introducing the topic, Board Chairman Rick Shaffer explained that the board’s most recent workshop included some discussion about revising the rules on public comments. He said that many public bodies have gone to just one comments period during meetings.
Shaffer said that, since the discussion, “I’ve gotten a couple of calls from commissioners that had some concerns about going to just one public comment period.” He said that one of the comments he heard was that, “If we had public comment at the end, it wouldn’t give the public time to comment on what we were thinking about doing.”
Little more was said about the issue and the consensus of the group was to take no action and “move forward, leaving the board rules the same.”
In other business, the board:
- Heard received and accepted the Community Health Agency’s Annual Report, presented by Health Officer Steve Todd
- Adopted the Taxable Value Report presented by Equalization Director Judy Nelson
- Approved various St. Joseph County millages to be levied
- Approved a request to fill the Friend of the Court enforcement clerk position that will be left vacant by the retirement of Pam Armstrong on July 19th
- Approved an agreement with Justice Benefits, Inc. to gather the required data to submit to the federal government for reimbursement for housing illegal immigrants in the county jail
- Approved a revision of Commission on Aging Bylaws to add language relative to board members absent due to service in the military
- Approved removal of the Community Healing Center from membership in the Human Services Commission for not paying the annual dues
- Approved a MERS service credit purchase for another employee who has requested permission to make such a purchase
- And approved reappointment of the following persons to the Commission on Aging Board: Beverly Burnham, Jean Skalski, Lillian Carter, Kelly Eaton, Allen Balog and Tim Carmichael.