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Commissioners welcome two board guests

April 19, 2012
By MIKE PALMER - Special to the Herald-Star , The Herald-Star

CADIZ - The Harrison County Board of Commissioners welcomed two guests from the Harrison County Board of Developmental Disabilities on Wednesday.

Stephen Williams, director of operations, and Lori Balvin, business manager and personnel director, spoke to the board about the activities at the school and workshop.

Williams told commissioners the successful collaboration between the Belmont, Harrison and Noble County boards of developmental disabilities, known as the BHN Alliance, has been a benefit to Harrison County.

"There are a number of mandated duties we have to fill and here in some of the smaller counties it is difficult to be able to obtain the personnel that you need, to be able to afford what you are required to have," Williams said.

"What this alliance has allowed us to do is share those responsibilities across the three counties, so we have all benefited from our partnership." stated Williams. "We have early intervention services that serve children up to age 3 and we have never been able to have a full-time person in that position."

The director told the board the BHN Alliance has allowed the addition of a full-time employee, which will be shared between the three counties. That employee also will be trained in the play and language for autistic youngsters program.

"We are sharing nine administrative functions across the counties, which allows us to share costs and also provides a built-in back-up system," Williams added.

"We are also finalizing arrangements with Easter Seals and they are going to open a satellite clinic at our school building sometime this summer," Williams reported. "Our families will no longer have to travel to Wheeling, Steubenville or Canton to receive their services and I think that will be a great advantage to Harrison County."

The board also passed resolution allowing the county to enter into a gas and oil lease with Chesapeake Energy for 77.38 acres of land in Cadiz Township. The lease is for five years at $5000 per acre, which will net the county coffers $386,640 and 20 percent royalties.

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