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To the editor:
As everyone now knows there are not enough funds to pay for the new health department building without raising taxes, which is unacceptable at this time and in the future.
When the building went out for bids, it was not stipulated that the subcontracting be done locally. This should have been considered by health director Brandon Hurley, but he consulted with no one over the possibility of using local businesses.
Knowing that there were insufficient funds, the director decided to purchase over $60,000 in new office furniture. This was done without consulting the health board. How is that for arrogance?
The director then wanted to raise taxes and had charts showing how much to raise them at one meeting. The public was greatly opposed, and [health board chairman] Dr. Andy Bustin had promised that taxes would not be raised when it was decided to building a new health department. Along with his charts to raise taxes, Hurley also proposed laying off employees.
Since the layoff threat, he has hired another RN and promoted his assistant to a supervisory position. The biggest expense, other than the building, is staff salaries. There are 13 people in the building (not counting the school nurses) with four, counting Hurley, supervising the other nine.
Do not bother to just walk in and ask for anything like a tetanus shot, as you will be told that you need an appointment even though there is no one else seeking any medical treatment. After getting an appointment, you will have to wait 15 minutes to be seen, even though there are no other patients.
What is keeping them so busy that they can’t see one person is beyond me. I realize that to look and feel important, one must have a number of people under them and a big impressive office.
Well, the director has set himself up for this, and is so important he doesn’t even have to be there all the time.
As a taxpayer, I see no reason to have a full-time director, and no need to have two supervisors. It might be of interest to the health board to compare the director’s salary from the time he convinced the board of his inability to do the job on a part-time basis and what he is taking in now. (I did not say “earnings” because I don’t think he has ever earned his pay.)
I would also like to know why was given a blank check to purchase, hire and pay the employees whatever meets his fancy. Just what is the purpose of having a health board when he does as he pleases?
Judge-Executive John Wayne Conway was kind enough to provide minutes from the June board meeting, which were comparable to those that a middle school child hoping to get at least a grade of C would hand in. It was the most inexcusable job I have ever seen, and makes the board look as though it just showed up and got nothing done.
Before the board’s reserve funds are depleted, it is going to have to do something. Perhaps it might consider getting rid of the big spending, arrogant director and stopping the last promotion of someone who is not really needed. The board would do well to let Conway do what needs to be done, as he seems to be the only one with a plan.