County Commissioners discuss children services

By Martin Graham -

Children requiring foster care and other special accommodations for visitation were the center of attention at a recent meeting of the Fayette County Commissioners.

Commissioners Dan Dean, Jack DeWeese and Tony Anderson passed several contracts to help the Fayette County Department of Job and Family Services (DJFS). The first of these was a memorandum of understanding between the commissioners and the DJFS which establishes conditions, uses and purposes of a building as a safe environment for those meeting to exchange children for visitation. The memorandum discusses various issues that could arise and how they would need to be fixed or what the protocol would be.

“People that are referred by the courts, through Children Services, or even self-referrals, use the visitation center,” Faye Williamson, DJFS director said. “Currently, Tuesdays and Thursdays they are in there from 8 in the morning until 8 in the evening. We have different levels of supervision. One level is where someone has to be in the visit at all times. The second level we have to report in every 10 minutes. Another level, they are allowed to just use the room and they really do not need the supervision. We are very fortunate to have a visitation center. We have a kitchen and different rooms set up just like a home. Back in the day we used to do visits in our agency and we would take a case worker who would have to monitor them. We wanted to try and make it as much like home as possible and want children to have a good experience when they go there.”

The commissioners also passed four contracts related to child placement and related services at several locations, per the recommendation of Williamson. The first contract passed was between the DJFS and Mohican Youth Academy, the second was between the DJFS and Advantage Family Outreach, the third was between the DJFS and Transitions for Youth, and the final contract passed was between the DJFS and Life Start, Inc. All of these contracts will be effective between Jan. 1, 2018 and Dec. 31, 2018 and will impact the children in the care and custody of Fayette County Children Services.

Additionally, the commissioners passed two contracts unrelated to children services. The first was a contract, per the recommendation of Fayette County Engineer Steve Luebbe, with Rumpke of Ohio, Inc. for waste removal, transportation and disposal at the Fayette County Transfer Station. The rate will be $29.50 per ton and the contract will be in effect for three years starting Dec. 21 of this year.

The final contract passed by the commissioners is to replace windows on the Economic Development Building. A total installation of 14 windows and transoms will occur between now and Jan. 31, 2018. Marquee Construction, Inc. agreed to hold the county harmless in case of accident or injury, according to the contract.

The Fayette County Commissioners’ Office is located at 133 S. Main St., suite 401 in Washington Court House and their office hours are Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. They can be reached at (740) 335-0720.

By Martin Graham

Reach Martin Graham at (740) 313-0351 or on Twitter @MartiTheNewsGuy

Reach Martin Graham at (740) 313-0351 or on Twitter @MartiTheNewsGuy