By Linda Kor
During Tuesday’s meeting of the Navajo County Board of Supervisors, a number of items were brought forward for approval including more than $1.2 million in health related services to be provided to residents throughout the county. While the items were approved, one supervisor expressed concern regarding the services being provided.
Those items included a contract between Arizona Early Childhood Development and the Navajo County Health Board for a Child Care Health Consultant Program for Navajo and Apache counties for $8,697, and a number of contracts with Arizona First Things First (AZFTF). Those contracts include Nutrition Education and Obesity Prevention services for the Navajo Nation area in the amount of $600,000; the Newborn Follow-up Program, $99,994; Oral Health Services for Navajo Nation, $300,000; an AZFTF oral health contract, $136,000; and a subcontract with Coconino County Public Health Services District for Oral Health Services under the AZFTF Navajo Nation Oral Health Services, $114,412.
These contracts are for the upcoming fiscal year, and will serve the Navajo Nation, Apache Reservation and the Navajo/Apache counties non-reservation region.
“How do you reach a child through these services?” Supervisor Sylvia Allen asked Mary Tyler, assistant health director for Navajo County Health Services.
“We use it to buy food items for demonstrations, and nutrition information for daycare staff and parents. It also pays for salaries and transportation costs (for staff),” she responded.
“The newborn follow-up program is for the non-reservation Navajo/Apache region, which mostly involves babies born at Summit (Medical Center). It includes home visits to these families in order to connect them with resources such as WIC (Women Infants & Children), immunizations and pediatric services,” explained Tyler.
Allen stated that while she understood that there are circumstances that greatly benefit from these services, she had concerns that too much government assistance keeps people from addressing their own needs.
“More and more the government seems to feel they have to fill a need. As parents we need to step up to solve these issues. I have a little bit of a problem with this. I understand these are tax dollars from tobacco sales, but these are still taxpayer dollars. There seems to be no oversight for these funds,” stated Allen.
“The more we do, the less they will do for themselves. We will have to pay this price somewhere. It’s alarming to me that we’re not showing people how to be responsible, but how they can be taken care of. I understand the need…young girls without fathers and that sort of circumstance, but I think it would be better served for things like parenting classes,” stated Allen.
“We do provide information on that as well. These are short-term programs and we do report to a council that oversees this funding. We’re not just spending this money left and right,” stated Tyler.
Allen stated that she didn’t mean to imply that the county was not spending the funds in a proper manner, but that she was concerned that such spending would continue to enable dependent behavior and reliance on services such as SNAP (food stamps) and other government support.
In addition to those items, the board also approved professional services from Around the Mountain Pediatric Dentistry, PLCC to complete services for the Navajo/Apache First Things First Oral Health in the amount of $50 per hour.
Professional service contracts were approved for Connie Baine, RDH, AP, Regina Rich, RDH, AP, Nida Lerch, RDH, Vita Nicks, RDH, and Tamra Cannon, RDH, for dental hygiene services throughout Navajo and Apache counties through the AZFTF Oral Health Fluoride Programs, each in the amount of $45 per hour.
In other action June 25, the board:
* Approved a facility use agreement between the Ganado School District and the Navajo County Public Health Services District for former classroom space of 1,584 square feet to be used as office space July 1, 2013, to June 30, 2014, for $729 per month.
* Approved an intergovernmental agreement between the Public Health Services District and the Kayenta School District for classroom space for July 1, 2013, to June 30, 2014, in the amount of $774 per month.
* Approved a quit claim deed to Timothy Wes Belbeck for property in Sun Valley.
* Approved an application for an extension of premises/patio permit for the Wild Women Saloon and Grill on Aug. 3 and Aug. 10.
* Approved tax exemptions as a request for redemption of waiver for 28 properties.
* Approved an all mail election for the Silver Creek Flood Protection District on Oct. 2 to elect one position for a four-year term ending in October 2017.
* Approved a master agreement signed by County Manager Jimmy Jayne between the Navajo County Library District and Sirsidynix.
* Approved a contract change order to provide administrative support for $34,800 in Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds for the Snowflake Academy project, and a funding agreement between the county and the Town of Snowflake for a CDBG for improvements to that building.
* Approved a funding agreement between the county and the City of Show Low for $100,000 in CDBG funds for intersection improvements at Ninth and Hall streets.
* Awarded a contract to North Country HealthCare for on-site jail medical services in the amount of $120 per hour for a minimum of eight hours per week.
* Awarded a $143,088.38 contract to IS Elections by Inclusion Solutions for electronic poll books.
* Awarded a contract to The Tribune-News for annual newspaper printing and advertising at $2.25 per column inch.
* Approved a cooperative purchasing agreement with the State of Arizona.
* Approved an intergovernmental agreement with the Arizona Department of Corrections for housing of DOC inmates for a daily rate of $49.44.
* Approved an amendment to an intergovernmental agreement between the Arizona Supreme Court, the Navajo County School Superintendent and the Navajo County Board of Supervisors for additional Title I funds for juvenile detention education services in the amount of $30,000.
* Approved an abatement of personal property taxes for a parcel of land in Show Low for tax years 2006-10.
* Approved the Family Counseling Funding county match of $4,073 for the Juvenile Probation Department so it may receive a Family Counseling Grant from the Administrative Office of the Courts in the amount of $16,290 for one year.
* Approved expenditure in an amount not to exceed $3,250 from District II Special Road Funds to purchase diesel fuel for the construction equipment to be used for the Southwestern Navajo Region Transportation heavy equipment operators certification training.
* Approved an intergovernmental agreement between the Arizona Department of Economic Security (ADES) and Navajo and Apache Counties Workforce Investment Act to provide a workspace for WIA staff in a DES office/One Stop in Apache County at no cost.
* Approved an intergovernmental agreement between DES and the Board of Supervisors for WIA allocated funding in the amount of $523,129 for the upcoming fiscal year.
* Approved tentative budgets for the public health services district, library district, flood control district (including the Little Colorado River flood control zone), White Mountain Lakes Recreation District, Silver Creek County Road Improvement District, Victory Heights Road Maintenance District, Fawnbrook County Road Improvement District, Sutter Drive County Road Improvement District, Madison Lane County Road Improvement District, Scott’s Pine Meadow County Road Improvement District, Shumway Road County Road Improvement District, Bucking Horse County Road Improvement District, Hilltop Drive County Road Improvement District, Mountain View County Road Improvement District and North Whistle Stop Loop County Road Improvement District.
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By Linda Kor