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August 15, 2017 • Headline News
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Commissioners say medics should stay in county unless mutual aid is needed

At the July 31 meeting of the Ripley County Commissioners, it was decided that medics can give mutual aid to surrounding counties, but not be dispatched on a regular basis to other counties.

Ripley County MedicsAt the meeting, Scott Huffman, county EMS director advised 911 dispatch requested in writing where the Ripley County Medics were to be dispatched to. They now receive requests from Franklin and Dearborn counties. Huffman said if it was mutual aid, he felt the county should respond. Otherwise, it leaves Ripley County without sufficient coverage. He said Oldenburg should probably be the cut off for intercepts. All commissioners agreed that Ripley County Medics should be kept in the county except for mutual aid.

Huffman also noted that one rescue unit is out of service due to damage from an accident. He said the insurance adjuster was checking out the damage. “Currently we have one ambulance at the hospital and two at the Milan location,” Huffman noted. He also reported that the Milan Fire Department is supplying drivers for the basic runs and there has been very minimal overtime used by the EMTs. He further noted that all departments are having a medic shortage.

County Highway Business

Superintendent Ray Toops reported progress on the chip and seal project. He also advised of the oil tanker overturning while trying to go around the US 421 road closure. Ripley County pumped the oil from the truck and will be reimbursed by the trucking company’s insurance for their help with the cleanup attempt;. They are also providing a culvert and will be reimbursed for that along with equipment and labor costs.

The superintendent also noted that there have been three wrecks above Napoleon at the replacement bridge at Kuntz’s lake and several at Millhousen Road at the intersection by the Jim Steuri property. About 25 gallons of oil and diesel leaked. He noted EPA is taking care of the clean up. Steuri had requested someone with the county highway meet with him.

Foremen Pat Kissell noted the dump trucks have been ordered. He said his department has been doing general repair on the machinery and trucks.

Sheriff’s Report
Sheriff Jeff Cumberworth told commissioners that one of the patrol cars was out of service due to a fuel pump. That unit has about 180,000 miles on it. He stated he would dispose of it (put on the county auction site) and strip the equipment from the vehicle. The sheriff further advised he had purchased three awnings for $1150 and he would find funding for them.

Inmate health cost was discussed. Sheriff Cumberworth told the commissioners that the nurse hasn’t been sending as many inmates to the emergency room recently. As for dental, they get antibiotics for 14 days and if that doesn’t work, the tooth is pulled. He further noted he had two inmates with HIV that cost about $20,000 total. The fund is running low and he will be requesting more funding from the council.

New Employees
The sheriff discussed hiring Dan Goris to work with the sheriff’s department on holidays and in the summertime. Goris is employed with Jac-Cen-Del Schools as their Resource Officer. He will look into this option further. Prosecutor Ric Hertel presented the commissioners with a new employee to fill the open clerical position. Michele Huber was hired and started August 7, 2017.

In Other Business
Johnny Lohrum, maintenance, reported that some pipe has been re-insulated in the courthouse. An air leak between the floor and ceiling of the second and third floors was not insulated and causing condensation.

Kelly Vollet, technology, noted a computer had been infected with ransomware and had infiltrated the Low Financial server. She has taken care of the matter.

The request from the coroner for the Tahoe was denied, with commissioners instead deciding it would be listed on the county auction site.
Diane Macek presented the commissioners with the contract for Knowink for the ePoll Pads.

Patrick Rose advised commissioners the Hazmat team from Madison has been dissolved. He said they are looking at a contract with a Hazmat Team from Hamilton County, Ohio to respond to Ripley County issues. The cost would be $3674.30 per year with no additional costs. The costs would be recovered by the Hazmat Team from the party or parties responsible for the spill. Commissioners tabled the matter until the August 14 meeting.

Editor’s note: This information was compiled from “unofficial” minutes from the county auditor. These minutes will be amended, accepted, or rejected at the next meeting of the commissioners.

Get to know your Social Security

By Charo Boyd

Social Security touches the lives of nearly every American. We’ve been with you from day one, when your parents applied for your Social Security number, and we are with you from your first job through your retirement party and beyond.

Social Security AdministrationFor more than 80 years, Social Security has stayed true to its mission of providing financial protection for the American people and has served as one of the most successful anti-poverty programs in our nation’s history. We encourage everyone to take steps toward their financial security. Regardless of your age or place in life, now is the right time to start planning for a financially secure future for you and your family.

Everyone can benefit from our first step: Get to know your Social Security. You can start your journey through all things Social Security by visiting and navigating through our menu.

Along the way, you’ll see how your Social Security number opens many important doors throughout life, from making it easier to apply for student aid and open your first bank account to starting your first job and buying your first house. You’ll also discover how your contributions to the Social Security system through FICA payroll taxes can make you eligible for important future benefits when you reach retirement age or if you become severely injured or ill. You’ll find how Social Security helps your family in the form of survivor benefits and how our Supplemental Security Income program assists disabled children and our most vulnerable adults.

We also encourage you to visit our website and set up your own my Social Security account today so you can begin taking steps toward financial security.
Through our website and your online account with us, you can:
• Verify your lifetime earnings record to ensure you’re getting credit for all your contributions toward Social Security and Medicare;
• Estimate future benefits for you and your family;
• Manage your Social Security benefits and personal information; and
• Learn more about how we’re securing your today and tomorrow.

Now that you’ve started to get to know your Social Security, stay in touch by visiting our Social Security Matters blog at
We encourage you to visit us at

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