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Commissioners to discuss a system to distribute CARES Act funding to departments

TiffinOhio.net Staff

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From left: Commissioners Mike Kerschner, Shayne Thomas, and Anthony Paradiso

TIFFIN — The Seneca County Board of Commissioners is to meet at 10 a.m. Thursday via Zoom.

During old business, the commissioners are to consider a form and policy that will allow county departments to apply for federal CARES Act money. A committee that was formed earlier this month has submitted a draft form and policy to the commissioners.

If approved, the documents will be distributed to departments. The forms can be filled out to make a request to reimburse or cover the costs of previously unbudgeted expenditures brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The aforementioned committee would then consider the request, make sure it is compliant with state and federal law and then make a recommendation to the commissioners, who would have final say over if the expenses can be covered.

The county has received about $923,175 to cover these kinds of expenses. The funding, which was distributed after the approval of the federal CARES Act and other state legislation, provides about $2 million for political subdivisions across Seneca County.

Each city, township and village in the county will receive a piece of the original $2 million. The amount received by these political subdivisions is based on a formula devised by the state.

These entities will then be tasked with creating their own system to reimburse their expenses related to the pandemic. If subdivisions do not use the funding, it can be returned to other entities within the county based on need.

Any funding not used by the end of the year is to be returned to the federal government.

In other business, the board is to review and consider accepting the findings of the Buildings Master Plan. The plan inventories county-owned buildings and outlines potential futures for them.

In January 2019, the commissioners tabbed Gossman Group to create the plan. In late June, Gossman presented the plan to the board.

In other action, the commissioners are to discuss its contract with High Bridge Consulting. In August, the board signed a contract with the company for assistance in attempting to land funds in the state capital budget.

Since the health crisis has changed plans and adversely affected budgets, Mike Dittoe and the company have provided several different services to the county, including updates and guidance on the use of federal Cares Act funding.

High Bridge has been providing services with no charge, as an attempt to alleviate some of the strain on the county budget. The future of the relationship between the company and the county is expected to be discussed Thursday.

Also during the meeting, the commissioners are to discuss the Seneca County Museum. Due to financial concerns brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, the museum has been closed since March.

At about 10:30 a.m., Seneca County Department of Job and Family Services Director Kathy Oliver is to introduce some new employees to the commissioners.

During new business, the board is to consider:

  • Declaring the necessity for a levy of taxes above the 10-mill limitation on behalf of the Seneca County General Health District. If approved, a five-year, 0.3-mill renewal levy would be placed on the November ballot. If approved, the renewal would commence in 2021.
  • A $35,000 supplemental appropriation to the METRICH Fund for equipment.
  • A $97,560 supplemental appropriation to the DRETAC-Prosecutor Fund.
  • A $397.80 supplemental appropriation to the Transportation Improvement District Fund for contract services.
  • A $225,000 supplemental appropriation to the Children Services Fund for Children Services shared costs.
  • The FY20 Federal Aviation Administration Airport Improvement Program application for land acquisition at the Seneca County Airport.
  • A contract with E3 RX, LLC, on behalf of Seneca County DJFS.
  • Appointing Jennifer Schumacher for the Northwest Ohio Children Trust Fund Board
  • Appointing Ginni Beaston for the Northwest Ohio Children Trust Fund Board

The commissioners are encouraging residents to join them in the online meetings through the application Zoom, in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.

To maintain maximum accessibility, the meetings will be recorded, archived and streamed live through Zoom.

Residents can join the meetings by computer or mobile device at the following link: https://zoom.us/j/92595230790.

Residents also can download the Zoom meeting app and join with meeting ID 925 9523 0790. Those who would rather call in and listen to the audio of the meetings can dial (646) 558-8656 and use the meeting ID. The meeting also is to be streamed on Facebook Live on the Seneca County Commissioners page.

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