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Wellness initiative gets funds from commission

 

The fledgling Health and Wellness Initiative designed to boost the county’s health ratings got a boost itself when county commissioners gave it $1,500 in seed money.

A week ago, the initiative had its first summit with the goal of improving a recent Health Outcomes survey that put Lawrence County in 88th position as far as the health of the region goes.

That statistic concerned Dr. David Lucas of Ohio University Southern to the point that he created the initiative and the recent summit. The mission is to move the county’s ranking up at least five points.

“We had a very good crowd (at the summit,)” Lucas told the commission at its regular Thursday meeting. “We want to have a larger consortium sometime in December.”

Short-term goals are to expand the initiative’s web page and to acquire non-profit status.

Commission President Les Boggs made the motion to give the initiative the donation.

“We don’t want to be last,” Boggs told Lucas.

In other action the commissioners:

• Approved a contract with Rock Construction to remove abandoned structures on Vernon Street in Ironton, Elizabeth Street in Proctorville, a road Scottown and Rockwood and Third avenues in Chesapeake;

• Accepted the resignation of Talitha Patterson from the Department of Job and Family Services;

• Hired for the county Emergency Medical Service two part-time paramedics at $10 an hour; four part-time EMTs at $9 an hour; and a full-time administrative assistant for $10.50;

• Re-appointed Michael Nourse, Doak Russell and Patrick Sheridan to the board of the developmentally disabled school;

• Agreed to study a request by Brett Looney, director of county group home, for an additional $50,000 to his budget to cover payroll and expenses;

• Received the weekly dog warden’s report where 45 dogs were destroyed; five were sold and none were redeemed by their owners. There were 105 dogs in custody that week.