LISBON — The County Health Advisory Commission changed its chairman, but narrowly voted to keep the same board member, Gary Dailey, on the County General Health Commission Board.
At their required annual meeting Monday, the commission voted 14-4 to return County Commissioner Tim Weigle to the seat of chairman. The other votes were for St. Clair Township Trustee Jordan Williams, who had taken the role last year.
“I just want to thank Jordan for stepping in last year,” Weigle said. “There were some things last year that just prevented me from being able to continue on. I appreciate your support.”
Following an executive session requested by Weigle to discuss the public board appointment, New Waterford Mayor Shane Patrone and Unity Township Trustee Terry McElroy nominated Jaime Jones, the head of EMS in New Waterford for the board position.
Center Township Trustee Tim Novak, who returned as secretary of the commission, nominated Dailey to return for another term, followed by a second from Fairfield Township Trustee Bob Hum.
Dailey, who has served on the board for at least a decade, edged out Jones 10-8 in a closed ballot vote. Prior to the close of the meeting, another nominating committee was formed to look at candidates for next year with Hum, Butler Township Trustee Paul Lease, Novak, East Palestine Mayor Trent Conaway, Madison Township Trustee Wayne Chamberlain and Weigle agreeing to take part on the committee. That committee decided to meet prior to a meeting of the entire Health Advisory Commission scheduled to discuss nominations at 6 p.m., Sept. 12.
Williams, Chamberlain, Novak, Hum and Weigle were on the last nominating committee.
Following the vote, Health Commissioner Wes Vins gave the commission an update on some of the things happening at the department.
— The health department continues to have vaccines and test kits for COVID-19 for those who would like to get them. He shared information about the variants and the numbers of cases there throughout the county in the past two years. In Columbiana County about 48 percent of the county have received at least one dose of the vaccine. Additionally, Vins said even with the changing guidance continue to stay home if you are sick. Get tested, follow the guidelines, but most importantly if someone develops an illness stay home.
— Vins reported the agency has transitioned back to conducting more with normal business with an increase in numbers of wells, septic and plumbing inspections needed. Back to school shots are available at the health department for no cost. Only 67 cribs were given through the Cribs for Kids program last year, which was down from prior years.
— Columbiana County and the state of Ohio has had its first Powassan Virus case in December. Similar to Lyme Disease, Powassan Virus comes from a tick bite Vins said. Over the past 10 years there have been 100 across the country and only this one in Columbiana County. Vins indicated the health department will be checking ticks in the area to see if it will be a bigger issue or if it was an isolated incident.
Additionally, the county has had a rabid bat and Vins asked people to bring the remains of any raccoons suspected of having the disease to the health department to be analyzed.
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