Lebanon County Commissioners approved Thursday provider contract amendments for two separate agencies totaling just over $149,000. 

Neither set of amendments for the county’s Mental Health/Intellectual Disabilities/Early Intervention (MH/ID/EI) and Area Agency of Aging (AAA) departments require an additional expenditure of taxpayer money since both will be covered within their respective budgets.

Holly Leahy, administrator for MH/ID/EI, presented 12 amendments totaling $104,456 while AAA administrator Carol Davies offered four change orders that increase that department’s spending by $44,554.  

The MH/ID/EI changes were for a variety of service providers offering a plethora of necessary care to agency clients. The services run the gamut from occupational, speech, and physical therapy to rental assistance through the Housing Authority of the County of Lebanon.

The largest change order was $19,608 for Mechanicsburg-based Aspirations for additional units needed to service young clients who have early intervention needs.

AAA’s amendments were for four providers, with the largest change for Altoona-based Regional Cooperative LCC for costs associated with staffing issues. Other changes included payments for foreign language services, hands-on personal and respite care for clientele, and an elevator inspection.

A separate action item – on what was a lightly scheduled agenda – involved the acceptance of a vehicle lease for the county’s Domestic Relations department. 

Domestic Relations director Michael Anderson explained that a new vehicle release for the department had to be executed since an audit revealed that the current vehicle was not approved correctly through the state’s procurement process. 

“That disallowed the current vehicle that we have,” said Anderson. “The state is going to take back our old vehicle that we can no longer get reimbursement for and then work to get us a new one.”   

The audit also revealed that all purchases of this nature must be approved by the county commissioners for purchases involving the state, added Anderson.

“The commissioners will have to approve these purchases so that I (the department) can get reimbursement, which is part of our cooperative agreement,” said Anderson. 

Instead of getting the old contract amended, the state requires a new one be purchased – even though the old vehicle was perfectly fine, according to county administrator Jamie Wolgemuth. 

The 60-month agreement with Enterprise Fleet Management leases a four-door 2023 Ford Explorer with a total of 60,000 contracted miles and a mileage overage rate of .04 cents per mile. 

The commissioners also received a first quarter update on its investment portfolio for the county’s pension fund from representatives from Stifel, a Lebanon County-based investment firm that manages the county’s retirement plan. 

Following the presentation, the county presented its annual contribution to the fund in the amount of nearly $3.19 million. It was noted it was the 10th consecutive year that the county has made that contribution in full during either the first or second quarter of the fiscal year. 

The commissioners also voted to:

  • Grant three applications for county aid through the county’s Liquid Fuels Tax Fund program. The municipalities to receive funding, project description, total estimated project cost and allocation requested are:
    • Heidelberg Township, seal coating, $29,000, $4,095
    • South Annville Township, general roadwork, $457,242.22, $3,438
    • East Hanover Township, line painting, $22,658, $2,658 
  • Accept the re-appointment of three individuals to the Lebanon County Agricultural Land Preservation Board: John Harrell, Dale Hoover and Daniel Kreider, all of Lebanon, for terms that expire on Jan. 31, 2026. Harrell is a public member, Hoover is a township governing body member, and Kreider is a farmer representative.
  • Name Shirley Sowizral to the MH/ID/EI Advisory Board Nominating Committee. Sowizral is a registered nurse who has been a Lebanon County resident for almost 30 years. She will serve a three-year term ending on Dec. 31, 2025.
  • Issue three proclamations for several observances. The recognitions include Lebanon Lilly Day to celebrate the creation of Lebanon County’s ag-based tourist attraction named Lilly, National Police Week, and the 35th anniversary of Juniper Communities.
  • Make 100 percent real-estate tax exemptions for two fully disabled veterans. 
  • Approve the minutes of its May 4 meeting, the treasurer’s report, and various personnel transactions.
Literature and a stress squeeze toy that celebrates Lebanon Lilly, the mascot of Visit Lebanon Valley, were on display in the office of the county commissioners. The county commissioners on Thursday, May 18, issued a proclamation in recognition of the county’s two largest industries: agriculture and tourism. May 18 was proclaimed Lebanon Lilly Day.
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James Mentzer is a freelance writer whose published works include the books Pennsylvania Manufacturing: Alive and Well; Bucks County: A Snapshot in Time; United States Merchant Marine Academy: In Service to the Nation 1943-2018; A Century of Excellence: Spring Brook Country Club 1921-2021; Lancaster...