The motions enacted and topics of discussion that took place throughout the week at committee meetings were recapped at the Livingston County Administrative Committee meeting Thursday night.
    Board Chairman Bob Young and the committee heads had a more in-depth discussion of the two major debates that occurred at prior committee meetings: the video recording of meetings and the implementation of resource officers. The board also made a decision on an item concerning home healthcare for senior residents.
    The first item discussed was that of a senior home healthcare program. Enough of the public had signed a petition concerning such a program that it will appear on the ballot in November. The referendum question reads as follows: “Shall the Livingston County Board maintain an adequate Public Health budget to provide county residents with the support they need to experience and maintain independent living?”
    The committee heads had come to a consensus that the language of the referendum was vague and without a clear funding mandate; between two choices, the committee voted on the following as a followup question to the petitioned-for referendum: “Should the County Board Levy an annual tax, not to exceed 0.025 percent, for a Senior Citizen Home Healthcare Program?” This will be voted on again at the full board meeting.
    On the matter of the school resource officers, Young expressed his support, particularly as Sheriff Tony Childress had whittled a request for $256,000 for the implementation of two resource officers for the Tri-Point and Flanagan consolidated districts down to a little more than $25,000 for each.
    Some, however, such as Elections, Rules and Legislation Chair Marty Fannin, Property Chair Mike Ingles and the county’s Housing Authority representative John Slagel, believed that not all of their questions and concerns had been addressed — particularly as it concerned how the hiring of two new officers (to replace the veterans who would serve as the school resource officers) fit in with the county’s officer attrition plan.
    “The fact is, a long time ago, we said we were going to reduce the (deputy count) by three and we’re going to do it by attrition,” Ingles said.
    At present, it was noted that the board has on the books for 25 deputies and there are 27 currently employed by the department, the two in excess of the county’s count slated for attrition. Ingles and Fannin clarified they supported the idea, though hoped deputy attrition would be a factor worth consideration going forward.
    “I’m willing to meet halfway to say to the sheriff, ‘Move one and we’ll hire one,’” Fannin said.
    The video streaming of committee meetings was the last significant item brought up by Young. He opined that he was “not crazy about it,” believing that with every comment made by committee members under live, public scrutiny, the level of active participation in committee meetings by board members would decline precipitously.
    “I worry that it may inhibit some people, who may be a little hesitant about being willing to express their opinions,” he said. “And if they’re a little hesitant about being taped, that takes away from the aspect of what committee work is.”
    Ingles, who said he was also “vehemently opposed” to it, noted he had done research on the current participation of residents  — he said that of all the full county board meetings that had been streamed since last year, “less than one person per thousand, on average, has viewed those.”