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March 15, 2013 Minutes


Present: Nicholas Dorsher, DDS; Dinah Goldenberg; Carol Grimm; Tim Mahoney, MD; Mike Thorstad, Richard Rohla, MD; and Mary Scherling
Excused: Michelle Donarski, JD

Others Present: Larry Anenson, Dan Aufman, Ruth Bachmeier, John Baird, MD; Myron Berglund, Desi Fleming, Allison Fuchs, MSUM Student; Amanda Nelson, MSUM Student; Mackenzie Jones, MSUM Student; Carmen Knott, MSUM Student; Doug Murphy, Melissa Perala, Kim Vance

Dinah Goldenberg, Vice Chair, called the meeting to order.

Announcements: Ruth formally welcomed Carol Grimm as new community member. The City has signed purchase agreement for the new building and agreement is now going through the corporate legal system at CVS. Invited board to view the most recent floor plans. Discussed plan for best use of the facility and avoiding duplication. Tentative time frame for occupation is Fall of 2014.
Approve minutes: Mary Scherling moved to approve the minutes from January 18, 2013, Dr. Rohla seconded, and motion carried.

Budget Report through February 2013: Melissa discussed categories of bills for the month of January and timeline of payment to us from the state. Explained in detail what categories Other Services covered. Desi Fleming explained the Nurse Family Partnership Program.
Health Officer Report: Dr. Baird distributed copies of written report. He is still working on Tuberculosis cases. Emphasized hardship review committee for the diversion, NDDoH coordinating committee, legislative session, NACCHO audit committee, and the NACCHO finance committee.

2013 Legislative Session and Update on Public Health Issues: Ruth distributed a handout and gave an overview on the bills of most significance to us. Discussed SB 2004, SB 2030, and SB 2307. One bill from Human Services for adult protection may bring new standards of reporting for Vulnerable Adult Abuse. Also talked about DUI traffic safety and the attempt to get seat belt use as primary offense. Center for tobacco prevention budget and home visits for high risk families were also mentioned. Myron gave background for on-site septic regulations and man camps. Mary Scherling questioned septic system inspections. Inspections are required in Cass County. Carol Grimm is following the autism registry bill.
Impact of Sequestration on Public Health: Ruth said starting in March; a 5 to 10 percent reduction of the federal grants was received. Federal dollars go through the NDDoH. May see an overall reduction of $60,000 to $100,000 in our federal grants over the next year. The goal is to continue programming as is and retain staff.  The reality is that if we get new state monies we may have to use that to continue same level of service instead of expanding or adding new programs. Asked for thoughts about prioritizing. Mike Thorstad, Dr. Mahoney, and Mary Scherling discussed a couple of State bills that would cap budgets at 3 percent. In growing cities of Fargo and West Fargo that would severely limit our ability to grow.
Public Health Week: April 1-7: Larry Anenson gave a history and update on Public Health Week. Theme is “Public Health is ROI – Save Lives, Save Money.” There are different themes for each day of the week.

Environmental Health Laboratory Presentation: Dan Aufman, Chief Chemist, gave a power point presentation. Their department is located within the water plant and does the majority of regulation testing for the water plant. Mainly tests the drinking water for the City of Fargo and 69 towns, plus wells around the landfill, wastewater, industrial pretreatment, yogurt and ice cream, swimming pools and semi public pools. Mary Scherling asked if you have noticed any changes in water quality because of the drought. No problems for now. Dr. Mahoney asked about the rumor that our water has lots of contaminates. The Fargo water plant is one of the best water plants. The only problem is the sulfate from Devils Lakes. The state does testing for surface water all the time and they see nothing that sends flags up. Reminder about the importance of not flushing medications down the toilet or sinks.  Proper disposal would be in a secure, hard sided container and to the landfill. Pharmacies will take back outdated drugs.

Adjournment: Next meeting is Friday, May 17, 2013.