The topic of salaries and job descriptions remains a debate for the Dubois County Council.

Last night, the council heard from Waggoner, Irwin, and Scheele concerning a proposed study of salaries and job descriptions for county employees. The study would cost the county roughly 50 thousand dollars. That figure includes the study and other expenses.

The study would classify jobs in the county into 4 different groups under the Factor Evaluation System. These groups are professional, common, protective occupations, and labor. Job descriptions in the county have not been updated since 1993. Waggoner, Irwin, and Scheele has done similar work for Perry, Knox, Greene, and Spencer counties among others.

Though most of the council was in favor of the study, councilman Nick Hostetter was not. During the meeting, he presented a proposal in favor of hiring a human resources director for the county and forgoing the study altogether. Hostetter cited a conversation with a member of the Shelby County Commissioners during his presentation. The commissioner says that Shelby County’s HR director has made things easier for that county as far as managing people goes.

Hostetter believes the study will only answer some of the questions and the answers will only be short-term:

Council president Greg Kendall argued that the study is needed to set the foundation before any human resources person could be hired. Currently, 9 out of 92 Indiana counties have a HR director.

As for the proposed study, it would take 7 to 9 months to complete. Due to the absence of councilman Mark Brescher, a vote on the study will be taken during a future meeting.

Also last night, the council gave its consensus to advertise for funding to go towards a health and wellness program for county employees. They approved advertising for nearly 18 thousand dollars this year. That would go up to just over 44 thousand dollars next year as the program is implemented.

The program would make yearly health screenings mandatory for all county employees. The screenings would include things such as blood pressure, blood glucose, height, and weight. 4 testing sites would be set up for employees to complete their testing.

Dubois County Health Department Administrative Director Donna Oeding is on the wellness committee. She says the idea behind the program is to save the county money:

This year would be the baseline year for the program. Once initial health data was gathered, health and wellness programs for county employees would then be developed. The county would pay 37 dollars for each screening along with 18 dollars for each online risk assessment done.

The program would be administered by Memorial Hospital and they will be partnering with the Dubois County Health Department.