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Washington County officials hear permit update

Before Thursday’s meeting of the Washington County Board of Commissioners, Commissioner Jamie Booth was updated on work being done by the Southeast Ohio Building Department.

Rick Dostal, building inspector and residential building official for the SEOBD, reported they’ve had 31 plan approvals so far this year.

“I think it’s well worth mentioning that they are $16,500 ahead of last year on permits. I just think that it goes to commend the leadership and the new vision of the leadership in the building department and I think it’s very well received by the public,” Booth said.

Commission President Kevin Ritter asked for a clarification.

“I want to make sure I understand this correctly. Even though we cut costs on permits, the total revenue dollars are up,,” he asked.

“Yes, because people are actually abiding by the law and they like the new atmosphere of the building department,” Booth said.

Ritter said what is happening is good business.

“We cut rates for permits and yet revenue rates go up. Why? Because people want a new business with our new building department and that’s a tip of the hat to you, Rick,” he said. “Very good.”

In other business:

¯ Ritter read a statement about frustrations with the county health insurance provider, Anthem Blue Cross/Blue Shield.

“I have now had three serious disruptions in medical care in as many years,” he stated. “I have had three medical procedures, ordered by my doctor, denied by my insurance company.”

He said the issues were eventually settled in his favor, but not without significant effort and frustration.

Ritter said he wanted to bring it up at the meeting because two of the three members of the commission have had “significant difficulties” with the insurance provider and he wondered what other county employees are experiencing.

“I would like to know what sort of experience county employees have had with Anthem,” he said. “As such, I am directing our human resources director to develop a simple survey that will be sent out to every county employee so we can get an idea of what sort of service we are receiving for our sizable premiums.”

¯ Kathryn Hartline, program coordinator for 4-H Youth Development, met with commissioners and two members of CARTEENS to give an OSU Extension update.

She gave fair updates for 4-H youth. Project judging will be held from 5-9 p.m. July 15 at the junior fair building at the Washington County Fairgrounds.

Their skillathon will be digital using chrome books, then the 4-H member will participate in a live interview with a judge July 31 at the junior fair building.

They held their tag-in on June 5 for large animals at the county fair. Poultry will arrive in July and the Barlow tag-in is scheduled for July 17.

The Waterford Fair will have 214 hog exhibitors. For the county fair, 24 market steer exhibitors tagged in 33 steers; 39 dairy feeder steer exhibitors tagged in 67 animals; 46 goat exhibitors tagged in 89 goats; and 34 lamb exhibitors tagged in 80 lambs.

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