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Board approves public transportation in Douglas County

By Kendra Hennis 
The meeting of the Douglas County Board was called to order at 9 a.m. on Wednesday, March 16 with all members present. 

During approval of the consent agenda, the board approved acceptance of a special warranty for 5311 projects. It was explained that this allows for Board Chairman Don Munson to sign and change the amendment as needed for grant funding with the Illinois Department of Transportation to secure public transportation in Douglas County. It was further explained that the 5311 grants are offered through the Illinois Department of Transportation and are intended to allow secure public transportation in Douglas County. Additionally, the board  approved ordinance 22-O-5 to provide public transportation in Douglas County. 

The board then approved ordinance 22-O-6, authorizing the use of $450,000 in funds from American Rescue Plan Act funds for a joint water upgrade project with the City of Newman. With this, the board also approved ordinance 22-O-7, memorializing an intergovernmental agreement between Douglas County and the City of Newman for the water system upgrade project. 

Following, Douglas County Health Department Administrator Amanda Minor spoke to the board on the status of the county. Minor presented graphs displaying the yearly COVID cases, which showed increases and decreases throughout the year. Minor commented that she was hopeful that we are currently in a decrease, as the numbers had currently shown a zero percent average in the county, and only a 1.3 percent average in Region 6. She stated that the health department continues to be prepared in case things do increase, and that they will continue to do testing and vaccinations at their J600 site in the Outlets of Tuscola. 

The board also:
* Approved the regular meeting minutes of the February 16 board meeting.

* Approved the payment of the county’s financial obligations. 

* Approved the reports of fees of county offices.

* Approved amending Kevin Nolan’s salary in the FY 2022 budget to $68,422 due to a scrivener’s error.

* Approved amending Cindy Baer’s salary in the FY 2022 budget to $66,682 due to a scrivener’s error.

* Approved 2021 audit services with Larson, Woodyard, and Henson for Douglas County.

* Approved resolution 22-R-5 authorizing execution and amendment of section 5311 grant agreement.

* Approved resolution 22-R-6, extending a declaration of emergency in Douglas County due to COVID-19.

* Approved an agreement between Chuck Knox, administrator of Douglas County Animal Control and the County of Douglas for $250 per month as well as compensation for gas for two trips to Douglas County Animal Control a week. This agreement is valid until December 2023. 

* Approved Douglas County Clerk Judi Pollock to purchase two new copies for the office for the amount of $12,016, which is to be paid through the clerk’s tax funds. 

* Noted that they were working with Douglas County Sheriff Nathan Chaplin to get a list of needed repairs at the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office.

* Approved adjournment to the April 20 board meeting at 9 a.m.

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