County VA, Public Health offices short-staffed

By Zach Jensen,

Short-staffing of county offices led to significant discussion during Monday’s regular meeting of the Winneshiek County Board of Supervisors. During the meeting, staff needs for the county’s Veterans Affairs, Public Health and Maintenance offices were considered. 

The county heard from Veterans Affairs (VA) Commissioner Beth Klimesh and VA Commission President Alice Abbott on the staff needs of the county’s VA office. The VA’s full-time office assistant is retiring, so the commission is hoping to replace her with a full-time person. The VA hasn’t asked for additional funding only that the funding that’s already in place for the position not be removed.

Next, John Halverson, Maintenance Supervisor, reported his current full-time employee is retiring. Because the county will likely terminate its ownership of the Smith Building, the supervisors are considering hiring a part-time replacement due to eventually having less cleaning and maintenance functions for that person to do.

Lastly, Krista Vanden Brink, Winneshiek County Public Health Administrator, reported that her department has had numerous retirements and resignations. Her budget currently has space for four nurses, and she currently has one on staff. Vanden Brink wanted the supervisors to know she needs to fill at least one nurse position. 

Full article in the May 16 Decorah Public Opinion newspaper.

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