Today's News

Marshall County Council to Meet Today

The Marshall County Council will meet today with Prosecutor David Holmes who is expected to discuss a full-time clerk position, request a waiver of employee probationary period and submit a request for a copier.

Sheriff Tom Chamberlin will also appear before the council to ask for a waiver of employee probationary period. Jay Bahr, the executive director of the Marshall County Economic Development Commission, will have an update for the council members.

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Marshall County Council Reviews Comprehensive Emergency Plan

During the Marshall County Commissioners meeting on Tuesday, Sept. 3, County Emergency Management Agency Director Clyde Avery was concerned that not all department heads had turned in plans for the Comprehensive Emergency Plan for the county.

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Marshall County Jail to Get Two New Stoves

Marshall County Sheriff Tom Chamberlin informed the Marshall County Council this week that the jail kitchen will be getting two new stoves.

He explained that the old stove was severely damaged when fire retardant had sprayed in the kitchen during an overnight incident in September. A settlement was reached to replace two commercial-grade stoves in the kitchen. When installed, the kitchen will have two stoves and four ovens to help prepare meals for the almost 200 inmates in the facility.

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Marshall County Commissioners Approve Personnel Requests, Review Clerk’s Remodeling Plans

The Marshall County Council approved a request by Sheriff Tom Chamberlin to hire an officer to replace one who recently resigned. The council also approved a request by Clerk Julie Fox to hire a deputy clerk as Vicki Yost will be vacating the position when she moves to Alabama. Yost had worked in the clerk’s office for more than 10 years.

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Marshall County Council Makes Reductions to 2014 Budget

The Marshall County Council went through line items in the county’s budget on Monday morning and cut expenses where they thought necessary. Most of the cuts were discussed with department heads on Aug. 20 during an all-day budget hearing.

Approximately $37,000 was cut from the Marshall County Commissioners’ budget while $58,000 was transferred out of several line items in the sheriff’s budget to the certified shares budget. $20,000 was cut from county corrections’ budget as a jail nurse is no longer needed with the contract the county has signed with Quality Correctional Care. The prosecutor’s office was cut just over $40,000.

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Marshall County Council Discusses Budgets

The Marshall County Council was all about the budget process during their meeting Monday morning.

The council approved the Solid Waste, South West Lake Maxinkuckee Sewer District and Argos Community Schools budgets.

Plan Director Ralph Booker gave a non-binding review of the 2014 budgets for the townships, schools, libraries and cities and towns of the county.

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Marshall County Council Holds Budget Talks with Department Heads

The Marshall County Council sat down with department heads on Aug. 20 to hash out their budgets for 2014.

Auditor Penny Lukenbill stated that the negotiations went very well and the advertised budget should be approved at the council’s next meeting. It has been advertised twice.

The council reviewed the $8.985 million proposed budget last week, which reflects a 2.6 to 3 percent increase. The department heads explained all of their budget requests to the council members. Lukenbill commented that the council made very few initial cuts.

Marshall County Council Approves Requests for Personnel Replacements

The Marshall County Council approved two requests from department heads to seek replacements in their divisions.

County Prosecutor David Holmes requested a replacement for a deputy prosecutor. He explained that one of the deputy prosecutors accepted a job in St. Joseph County and will be leaving the office at the end of August. He told the council he wanted to interview for a replacement deputy prosecutor right away and the council approved that request.

Sheriff Tom Chamberlin requested to seek a new head cook and a turnkey/dispatcher. Chamberlin told the council that both positions are full time and were recently vacated. The council approved the sheriff’s request and he is now able to accept applications and interview prospective employees for those two positions.

Marshall County Council to Hold Budget Hearings on Tuesday

Marshall County Auditor Penny Lukenbill presented the proposed 2014 budget sheets to the county council this week.

The county will be reviewing the $8.985 million proposed budget, which reflects a 2.6 to three percent increase, with department heads on Tuesday, Aug. 20 and that could be whittled down by the time the discussions are over.

One budget that the council will be focusing on is the Jail CAGIT fund. The council will be watching the funding in order to feed the increasing amount of prisoners in the jail. Sheriff Tom Chamberlin just requested an additional appropriation for $80,000 to feed the inmates for the rest of the year. That appropriation was approved by the council this week.

Marshall Co. Council Approves Appropriation for Coroner, Drug Free Community

The Marshall County Council approved an additional appropriation request by Coroner Bill Cleveanger explained that a jail death, industrial fatality, a drowning, traffic accidents and other issues have prompted the request for funds. He explained that these things are obviously unpredictable but are necessary in order to bring conclusion to a case as serious as a fatality.

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Marshall County Council Approves Add’l Appropriation of $80,000 for Prisoner Meals

The Marshall County Jail situation is causing the Marshall County Council to plan differently for next year’s budget.

Sheriff Tom Chamberlin was before the council Monday morning to ask for $80,000 in additional appropriations for prisoner meals for the rest of the year. He commented that just over the weekend the jail saw over 200 inmates in the facility which is the most that has been incarcerated at one time since the jail was built in 2006. The bed capacity is 238.

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Marshall County Council Approves Emergency Fund Ordinance

The Marshall County Council held a public hearing Monday morning on an ordinance permitting procurement of emergency funds in the event of an emergency.

The ordinance was brought forth by Emergency Management Agency Director Clyde Avery. In the case of an emergency and funds are needed, the ordinance allows the funds to be approved by just the president of the Marshall County Commissioners and the president of the Marshall County Council. A special meeting with all members of the governing bodies will not need to be called to approve these expenses.

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Marshall County Council Approves Appropriations

The Marshall County Council members approved a $20,000 appropriation for the Marshall County Older Adult Services organization.

Jackie Wright, the director of Older Adult Services, requested the funds last month for this year only for the transportation program. Wright explained that a large share of their funding from INDOT was cut drastically this year due to the federal sequester. This shortfall will only affect 2013 as she expects the transportation bill to be back to full funding levels in 2014.

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Marshall County Council Tables Health Department Insurance Funding Request

Wes Burden from the Marshall County Health Department appeared before the county council Monday morning to request that the health educator be paid health insurance through grant funding as her hours will go over the 28 hours per week requirement.

The health educator works hard in preparing paperwork for grants that are beneficial for the county health department which requires a lot of time. Burden explained that she works 20 hours a week in her regular duties as the health educator and to prepare the many grants takes more time out of her regular work days.

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Marshall County Director of Older Adult Services Requests Funding

The Director of Older Adult Services approached the Marshall County Council this week requesting funds for the transportation program.

Jackie Wright explained that a large share of their funding from INDOT has been cut drastically this year which has to do with the federal sequester. This shortfall will only affect 2013 as she expects the transportation bill to be back to full funding levels in 2014. She appreciates the funding that is given from the county by the commissioners, but she is seeking additional funds to keep the transportation service open for the remainder of the year.

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Marshall County Council Approves Appropriations

The Marshall County Council approved several appropriations during their meeting Monday morning.

Marshall County Sheriff’s Department Captain Dan Butt asked the commissioners for approximately $32,000 to be added to the prisoner meals line item in the sheriff’s budget. He asked the council to take some money out of the General Fund and the CAGIT fund to be used to fund this request and the council denied that. They suggested transferring approximately $30,000 into that line item for now which will be done within the sheriff’s budget. Captain Butt told the council that more money will be requested as they are about $82,000 short to fulfill the needs at the jail in terms of meals.

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Marshall County Council Makes Decision Concerning Part-Time Employee Hours

The Marshall County Commission members and the council members met in a joint session Monday morning to discuss a personnel policy amendment concerning hours for part-time employees.

As explained by the county’s insurance representative, Tony Nyers, the Affordable Care Act requires that all businesses, including county government, offer insurance benefits for all employees that work a 30-hour work week on a six-month average. Those employees are now considered to be eligible for insurance benefits if they meet the requirements for insurance benefits.

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Marshall County Commissioners, Council to Meet in Joint Session

The Marshall County Council and commissioners will be meeting in joint session this morning to receive information on the impact of the Affordable Health Care Act regarding part-time employees, and the resulting changes to the personnel policy.

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Marshall County Council Concerned Over Paying EMA Salary

Following the Marshall County commissioners’ decision in March to pay the entirety of EMA Director Clyde Avery’s salary – roughly $40,000 – county council president Matt Hassel has expressed concerns over some possible side effects of that decision. The commissioners made the decision to cover the full cost of Avery’s salary, rather than allow half of it to be paid for through a FEMA grant, because the requirements for the grant have been steadily increasing over the last few years.

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