Orleans lifts hiring freeze, ban on travel for employees

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 27 August 2020 at 2:34 pm

ALBION – The Orleans County Legislature has lifted a five-month hiring freeze and ban on out-of-county travel for employees.

County Legislature Chairwoman Lynne Johnson said several employees have opportunities for important training or conferences to help them do their jobs and better serve the public.

The county also has several vacancies among the workforce. The county on Wednesday voted to appoint a new county historian, and fill other vacancies in the Health Department, Sheriff’s Office, Computer Services, Mental Health Department, Department of Social Services and Department of Public Works.

In other action at Wednesday’s Legislature, the county:

• Set a public hearing for 4:25 p.m. on Sept. 23 to continue a 4 percent Hotel and Motel Room Occupancy Tax.

• Agreed to raise the compensation for members of the Soil and Water Conservation District Board from $30 a meeting to $50. County legislators who are on the board don’t receive a stipend for attending those meetings. The higher pay will be effective Sept. 1.

• Authorized the Orleans County Health Department to apply for a $50,000 grant through The Kresge Foundation for proposed focus areas related to the Chief Health Strategist role/Community Health Strategies and also Covid response activities.

• Agreed to increase the work week of the public health director to 37.5 hours a week and increase the salary to $97,739.

• Authorized the Orleans County Sheriff to accept a $71,028 grant and participate in an agreement between NYS Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services for Operation Stonegarden.

• Approved purchase of automotive parts for $25,578 to repair the M1 and M2 Mercury safe boats through Bow & Stern Marine in North Tonawanda.

• Renewed an agreement where the county will provide court cleaning and minor repairs at the Orleans County Courthouse for $107,218, with the agreement between the NYS Unified Court System and the county running from April 1, 2020 to March 31, 2021.

• Approved an agreement with Lake Country Media in Albion to provide printed material including letterhead, stationary, envelopes, business cards and appointment cards for all county departments from Sept. 14, 2020 through Sept. 13, 2021.

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