EMERGENCY MEDICAL SERVICES
Mike Sullivan, EMS Coordinator, reported since last report, Eureka saw 10 calls for service and Crescent Valley 3, for a year-to-date total of 48 County-wide (31 for Eureka and 17 for Crescent Valley), compared to 47 last year. Eureka EMS staffing is stable with 11 volunteers while Crescent Valley has three volunteers and two CV volunteers who were on medical leave have resigned.
The County EMS is once again receiving medicare payments. Sullivan submitted EMT licenses to the State but the State is behind in processing as State EMS staff is down to two field representatives and the Division has assigned five temporary personnel to assist with license processing and sent a letter extending licenses for 14 days as all licenses expire at the end of the month and without licenses personnel can’t bill Medicare. With the passage of Senate Bill 459, the Good Samaritan Drug Overdose Act, Advanced EMTs and law enforcement will be able to administer the internasal spray Narcam to persons who’ve overdosed. Sullivan has been providing training to the Sheriff’s office. Sullivan noted Nevada is one of the top four states in the nation for overdoses. Sullivan related that on Friday, March 18 there was a vehicular accident on Highway 278 with two unrestrained passengers, noting that “seatbelts really do save lives.”
Tom Dunkelman, US EPA, Region 9, came before the Commission to discuss the conceptual plan for a repository to receive contaminated soils and as a possible source of uncontaminated remediation material, to be located along the south side of Ruby Hill Avenue (APN 001-141-01) within the Town of Eureka. Dunkelman noted that the Final EECA (ENGINEERING EVALUATION/COST ANALYSIS) is being distributed and will be available at the Eureka Library and Public Works office as well as on the EPA website (https://www.epaosc.org/site/doc_list.aspx?site_id=7834).
Dunkelman reported there were no substantial changes but responses to comments are included with every comment addressed. The EPA plans to be in Eureka spring and summer of 2016 doing fieldwork. The goal of work this season is to construct a repository for soil dug to date and there are plans to clean up about 40 additional residential parcels and to address the hillside behind the senior housing. Presently there is just over $1 million for field work and Dunkelman is optimistic another $3 to $4 million in funding may become available.
The repository is being designed with a focus on minimizing the footprint and keeping everything out of sight of residences or view with the site pushed as far towards the BLM property line as possible. The repository will be armored with ric rac and designed to channel water with an access road in from the paved road. The repository will be built to geotechnical standards and will use three to four feet of native soil and will feature an evaporative transpiration cap cover that doesn’t let water pass through. The material will be placed in the repository and compacted with the cell to be closed with a working face until the site is filled at which point it would have a four foot cover. Conceivably the first year would see the repository built and another two years to fill.
Clean top soil would be available for residents’ use, too with a stockpile to be available there.
Temporary fencing will be placed to discourage recreational usage by dirt bikes or quads. The Commission asked the EPA to consider both fending and removing the road access to discourage public access.
Sarah Cafasso, EPA Community Involvement Coordinator, reiterated that the EPA will be in Eureka in the Spring and will be offering yard sampling. The Commission accepted the EPA’s conceptual plan proposal.
COUNTY MONEY & 2017 REVENUE PROJECTIONS
Revenue projections for 2017 are $16.8 million without inclusion of net proceeds, but pass-throughs to the School District and the State take about $8 million off of that, leaving more like $8 million.
A proposed increase to the County tax rate and reallocation of the proposed tax rate will be considered at a public hearing scheduled for May 16.
Clerk/Treasurer Bev Conley reported the County began February with $13,565,381 and saw $1,530,447 in revenue, attributable to the 4th installment of property taxes, and $707,578 in expenditures leaving an ending General Fund balance of $14,388,250. Conley noted monies will be “pretty lean until the end of July, beginning of August.”
Natural Resource Manager, Jake Tibbitts, reported there was an irrigation workshop at the Opera House that highlighted research coming out of Diamond Valley that showed with the new pivot heads a 20 percent reduction in water use.
Tibbitts has been invited to attend the Legislative Committee on Public Lands meeting in Elko on July 22.
Tibbitts reported that Eureka County put in seven projects for the State Conservation Credit system with two selected. Tibbitts has been working with the land owners and said, “There’s a lot of gray area with that that needs to be worked out.” He said, “Private land owners that want to do potentially something are getting cold feet because they’re not quite sure what it means to them” and they are “receiving limited direction from the state.” Tibbitts asked Chairman Goicoechea to “take that back to the Council,” the Nevada Sagebrush Ecosystem Council, of which Goicoechea is Chair.
Tibbitts said they are “pushing everything on the proponent” who are “not sure what they need” and are “not getting direction from NDOW” and are being told “‘you tell us what you want to do and we’ll see how it fits.” Tibbitts said the two land owners who signed up are “almost at the point where they’d like to see some of the kinks worked out before” they move forward with the Conservation Credit projects. Tibbitts asked Goicoechea to “take that back as Chair,” reiterating that the land owners need an “understanding both ways of what’s required and what’s expected.”
Regarding the law suit addressing the Sage Grouse Land Use plan, Tibbitts noted the “attorneys are keeping all of us involved” although the public will “not hear much until the briefs are written,” with he and Chairman Goicoechea reviewing.
Regarding the BLM and grazing decisions, Tibbitts noted annual authorizations are coming forward when the BLM sits down with a rancher and signs something. Tibbitts said that “under the guise of drought, dozens of drought decisions” have previously been put forward and he wanted to show the Commission that the was most recent US Drought Monitor showed most of Eureka County is abnormally dry and “might start to see a good winter help on the hydrologic drought.” Tibbitts said the BLM “because of this don’t have a lot of reason to push through drought decisions” since the Drought Monitor is not showing drought for most of Eureka and Elko County. Tibbitts said he hasn’t seen any drought decisions and had a “pretty productive meeting sit down with the BLM” where he “spent most of the morning dealing with that” with a “positive resolution.”
Regarding the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest Plan Preliminary Draft Monitoring Program, Tibbitts told the Commissioners he didn’t “feel the need to weigh in on the monitoring program itself because it’s fairly high level but it’s any decisions that flow from what they do.” So, while he didn’t “think it’s crucial to weigh in at this point,” he did feel it’s “crucial to pay attention.” The Forest Plan was last updated in 1982.
HEALTH CARE & NHC CONTRACT
In reviewing the response from Nevada Health Centers to Eureka County’s requests related to future clinical services contracts, the Commission agreed that the contract needs to continue to include the performance audit section and didn’t feel NHC should be given a six month grace period. They are looking at a budget of $640,000 and are meeting with another group that may consider giving Eureka County a proposal.
EUREKA COUNTY COMMISSIONERS APPROVED:
• Appointment of two (2) three-member committees to prepare arguments advocating and opposing approval of AB191 –Motor Vehicle Fuel Indexing 2016 Ballot Question;
• The budget proposal for the Eureka and Beowawe Justice Court;
• The Sheriff’s Office tentative budget;
• The Public Work’s budget;
• a 3 percent raise for salaried and elected officials;
• Scheduling a budget hearing on April 13 at 10 a.m.;
• Declaring May 5, 12, 19, and 26 as Clean Up Days in the townsites of Eureka, Crescent Valley, and Beowawe for the following items: yard waste, furniture, white goods, tires, and car bodies (except hazardous materials, household garbage, dead animals), with all items to be removed to be located at the properly line adjacent to the street and separated according to each waste classification;
• Declaring May 7, 14, 21, and 28 as Free Dump Days at the Eureka Landfill and Crescent Valley Laydown Yard for the following items: yard waste, furniture, white goods, tires, and car bodies (except hazardous materials, household garbage, dead animals), with hours for the Free Dump Day to be 8 a.m. to noon and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. for the Eureka Landfill and 8 a.m. to noon for the Crescent Valley Laydown Yard with all items to be separated and disposed of according to each waste classification;
• The Contract for Services of Independent Contractor with Crystal Clear Janitorial for janitorial services for the Administration Building;
• The Contract for Services of Independent Contractor with Crystal Clear Janitorial for janitorial services for the Courthouse Building;
• The Contract for Services of Independent Contractor with Crystal Clear Janitorial for janitorial services for the Justice Facility and Eureka Library Building.