Marshall County Health Department administrator Faith Freed presented a request to the commissioners on Monday to apply for the Supplemental Workforce in Schools Grant which is a federal pass through grant. This is the second year the county is applying for this grant.
Faith told the commissioners that she doesn’t have any details on when the grant is due or for how much it is, she only had the letter of intent and requested to apply for the grant. She specifically noted the lack of details because the County Council took issue with the timing of the last grant she applied for. The vaccine grant was over $200,000 and could have helped provide contractual employees to administer vaccines, the vaccines themselves and multimedia advertising to promote the various vaccination opportunities in the county. The Council ended up denying her request even though the commissioners approved it.
President of the commissioners Stan Klotz had a question for the Health Administrator saying, “I support what you are trying to do. I just have a question. Can we do better? I look at what we are spending on advertising. Does the state force us into advertising for that or is it something we do?”
Faith responded that it’s part of the grant requirement. She then explained that the grant she was applying for on Monday was for a school liaison position. This grant provides a contract employee to assist with the various schools in the county on immunization record keeping and scheduling of clinics held at the schools. It will also provide education to parents regarding hearing, vision, and immunizations.
Mr. Klotz said he thought she was asking for an additional appropriation and felt spending so much on advertising wasn’t useful. He said, “I’d like to see that money spend on services instead of advertising.”
After clarification on the grant request presented Monday, all three commissioners voted to approve the request to apply.
Freed will now have to approach the County Council for approval to apply for the grant at their meeting on Thursday, April 13th at 6 p.m.