Vanhorn addresses City Council

GRAFTON— Director of the Grafton-Taylor Health Department Boyd Vanhorn, delivered a decision to City Council, on Tuesday, in regards to the health department’s wishes to hold a special election for a levy that would allow them to construct a new building if passed.

Vanhorn had previously asked the council to consider assisting in the cost of holding the special election, which is $70,000.  According to Vanhorn, the current building is in desperate need of many repairs caused by the hailstorm that hit the area last April. The cost of repairing that damage would be upwards of $30,000.

“The Board of Health has decided to pay the full $70,00 for the special election,” announced Vanhorn. “In fear of the building’s condition only getting worse. We need this election.”

Vanhorn shared that the decision came after a discussion of not wanting to use taxpayer dollars to hold the election.

“We will be using money that has been earned through our Home Health Services. We do not want the taxpayers to have to fund this. We want to earn our way as much as possible, and I believe this further shows our commitment to this project as well as to the community,” said Vanhorn.

He went on to say that in the future, the council’s help might be needed for demolition of the old building, if the levy passes, along with other costs.

“Those are future items, but we are proud to be able to do our part now,” commented Vanhorn.

Councilman Tom Bartlett read aloud his own statement of support for the ambitious plan of responsibility to be assumed by the Graton-Taylor Health Department.

“I commend Boyd Vanhorn for his courage and vision in this plan, for a new building to support the mission of the Board of Health, in this time of increasing need,” read Bartlett.

Bartlett’s statement also commented on his belief of the extensive project of providing a new facility for the Grafton- Taylor BOH, to be more than just an effort for a shiny new building. Rather he shared that he is convinced that the project means the county will be graduating into a new level of responsibility.

“The enthusiasm I am feeling for this effort is giving me new hope for progress,” Bartlett expressed.

Also during the City Council meeting, citizen Robert Burton addressed the members, commending the work of Grafton City Police Officer Brandon Riffle.

Burton was witness to a vehicle accident that had taken place on Monday, in which Riffle was the responding officer.

“I just wanted to share that he handled the situation very professionally, above and beyond what I had ever imagined. He took a potentially bad situation, when someone was upset, and defused it very quickly,” said Burton.

Burton also spoke about how much he appreciated officer Riffle, and that he knows law enforcement officers don’t always get the thanks they deserve.

“I am personally very proud that you came here today to share. These meetings are open to the public, but unfortunately, many times we are looking out to empty chairs, so for you to come in and share something so positive is very gratifying,” remarked Mayor Peggy Barney. “We have a police department that is second to none.”