The Lyon County Board of County Commissioners met in Action Session at 11:00 a.m. in the Commission Chambers with the following people in attendance:
Rollie Martin, Chairman Doug Peck, Vice Chairman
Scott A. Briggs, Commissioner Tammy Vopat, County Clerk
Marc Goodman, County Counselor Dan Williams, County Controller
Others attending the meeting:
Dr. Oyenuga, Public Health Officer John Koelsch, Undersheriff
Michael Halleran, Asst. Co. Counselor Jeanine McKenna, Chamber of Commerce
Tagan Trahoon, KVOE reporter Renee Hively, FHCHCC
Melissa Smith, FHCHCC Jennifer Millbern, FHCHCC
Judge Merlin Wheeler Ruth Wheeler, District Court
Zach Deloach, Gazette reporter Ashley McGee, Attorney’s Office
Sharon Gaede, Treasurer’s Office Esther Knobloch, Newman Regional Hospital
Kathy Pimple, Newman Regional Hospital
Call to Order / Pledge of Allegiance
Dr. Oyenuga thanked everyone for their attendance and asked for a report from the Flint Hills Community Health Center.
Jennifer Millbern and Esther Knobloch presented information from the health department. The number of cases now is more that we have had since the start of the pandemic. There is currently a spike in pediatric cases. Diagnosis per week has increased after Thanksgiving from 80 to 300 cases each week. 30-40 percent test positive. There have been no Omicron cases diagnosed in Lyon County as of now. Fully vaccinated population in Lyon County is 54.8%. Newly diagnosed cases are due to those who are not vaccinated. Esther Knobloch presented information on the hospital statistics. The Express Care volume has tripled in numbers. There are currently 9 patients on ventilators at the hospital with bed capacity full. 56 people in Kansas as waiting on a transfer to get a bed in a hospital. Commissioner Briggs stated those who won’t get the vaccine are putting everyone at risk. Commissioner Peck ask about the medication be prescribed to covid patients. Dr. Oyenuga explained the protocol of prescribing the medication. Melissa Smith updated Commissioners on the influx of the cases and contact tracers. Dr. Oyenuga addressed the Public Health Order. She said the situation of Lyon County is critical and we need to slow the spread of the virus. To vaccinate, wear masks, wash hands, us hand sanitizer and social distant. Dr. Oyenuga, as the Lyon County Public Health Officer, recommended a mask mandate be reinstated and limit social gatherings to no more than 100. For people to get vaccinated, wash hands, and social distant. Dr. Oyenuga stated she is trying to do the right thing to get this virus under control. Commissioner Peck stated we are not getting information out to the residents of Lyon County, and we need to. Commissioner Martin talked about everyone being responsible to take precautions. Commissioner Martin suggested staying with the current health order. Commissioner Briggs stated that people haven’t followed the precautions and a mandate will not change that. Commissioner Peck agreed that local businesses can decide on masking upon entrance or not. There is no penalty for not wearing a mask under a mask mandate and cannot be enforced.
Commissioner Martin asked Counselor Goodman to explain Senate Bill 40. Any mandate can be challenged within 30 days of being put in place. This bill was a limit on State power and Governor’s power. There are no mandatory orders in most counties in Kansas. Commissioner Briggs stated he understood the reason for the request for mask mandate. He stated there are those who will not get vaccinated and refuse to wear a mask.
Commissioners recognized the health system is very pressured right now with the influx of cases and thanked those who are working the front lines, knowing the problems they are faced with including being short staffed.
Motion: To Adjourn from Commission Chambers at 12:10 p.m. Martin/Briggs 3-0
There being no further business before the Board, the next meeting will take place on Thursday, January 13, 2022, at 9:00 a.m.
Tammy Vopat Rollie Martin, Chairman
Lyon County Master Clerk Lyon County Commission