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Commissioner’s Corner
Medicaid funding to hurt counties statewide

The fall season has officially appeared. Although one wouldn’t have known it the last week or so of September with temperatures in the 80’s. Now at the end things are more back to normal weather wise. It is now starting to look and feel like fall with the temperatures, and farmers starting to harvest beans and some corn. Sad to say, but it won’t be long till winter rears its ugly head.

This month has been a mixed bag in the Commissioner’s Office, mostly just routine business. One issue that is on the horizon in the near future is the State Senate and the Governor reached a possible tentative agreement on the Medicaid Managed Care Organization (MCO) sales tax funding bill. Much to the dismay of every county in Ohio, this will only provide about 25% of what is needed; with the possibility if things go well the funding to counties could rise to about 39% of previous levels. This is a huge loss for every county in Ohio. The State was going to lose about 207 million dollars, so they decided to take it from the Counties, Cities, and Townships local government funds. After getting defeated in the house, the senate and the Governor tried to work out a compromise. The compromise was the State would give the Counties 50 million now, and MAYBE 30 million next year. With the State not paying their mandated full share of Indigent defense (providing a lawyer for those who cannot afford one), and the State not sure how much they will help with the cost of elections and new equipment, this puts a real bind on all counties. We are looking at what we need to do to cover this loss to Darke County.

In other happenings, on the 8th of September, Business Administrator John Cook and Commissioner Stegall went to Columbus for our annual CEBCO (County Employees Benefit Consortium) meeting for health insurance. Once again, because of our employees’ attention to their own health with the assistance of our Health and Wellness group, our premium showed a very modest increase. Darke County was below the State average again for the 7th straight year. Thank you to our Wellness team and our employees for doing their part in keeping our premiums manageable.

The Darke County Visitors Bureau hosted the State Visitors Bureau Convention in Greenville on the 20th. Matt Staugler, the Darke County Visitors Bureau Director, had a full slate planned for the other counties including a nice dinner at the Bistro (Thank You Ted Abney and crew!) and a late evening visit to The Kitchen-aid store.

Thanks to Matt for doing his best to expose Darke County to the rest of the State and Country.

September has come and gone and with it starts the fall season. Now would be a good time to come to one of our meetings. We meet every Monday and Wednesday at 1:30 p.m. in the Commissioner’s Office, 520 South Broadway in Greenville, just south of the Courthouse. Plan on coming to one of our meetings, and we hope to see you there!

The Darke County Commissioners


 
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