BY KARISSA MILLER

The Iredell County Health Department will offer free flu vaccines this fall at multiple sites in preparation of the merging of flu season and the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Iredell County Board of Commissioners on Tuesday approved $25,271 in funds from the Immunization Branch of the Division of Public Health to help the health department purchase flu vaccines.

Susan Johnson, director of nursing and clinical services, told commissioners that with COVID-19 among us, it is more important than ever to prevent the spread of flu. Doing so will help save lives and reduce the stress on the local healthcare system.

According to Johnson, the health department plans to use these funds to provide free flu vaccines at multiple sites throughout the community, including African-American and Hispanic churches, the Soup Kitchen in Mooresville, Fifth Street Shelter and to the homeless population living near the Statesville Walmart.

In other matters, commissioners approved a budget amendment request from the Department of Social Services in the amount of $125,621 to appropriate CARES Act Funds to purchase laptops and other technology to improve mobility and telework capability under pandemic conditions.

The funds were part of the 2020 COVID-19 Recovery Act (Session Law 2020-4), federal CARES Act funds to support additional Adult and Child Protective Services costs related to the pandemic.

The funds must be expended by December 30.

OTHER BUSINESS

Also, during the meeting, the board approved:

♦ A request from the Health Department for approval of budget amendment in the amount of $215,054 from funds from the Local Technical Assistance and Training Branch of the Division of Public Health to support infection prevention. The money will be used on contracted staff, negative pressure rooms, Port-o-count machine, temperature scanners, phones, computers, PPE and other supplies.

♦  Approved a request from Elections for approval of budget amendment in the amount of $46,000 CARES Act Supplemental Funds received as a subgrantee of the N.C. State Board of Elections.

♦  Approved a request from ICATS to call for a public hearing on November 20 for ICATS Transportation grants.

♦  Approved a request from Iredell-Statesville Schools for approval of a joint resolution regarding broadband expansion within the County. Commissioners are committed to looking for grants and other measures to make sure that every student has access to reliable internet.

♦  Approved a proclamation recognizing October 23-31 as Red Ribbon week. Red Ribbon Week encourages citizens to participate in drug prevention education activities, making a visible statement that they are strongly committed to a drug-free state.

County Manager’s Report

County Manager Beth Jones reminded the public that there is overflow parking behind the Board of Elections office. There is a special geotechnical matting, offering protection to ensure that vehicles do not get stuck. The county is encouraging people to park there. It will help with the traffic and parking issues, Jones said.

The county manager also commended the Board of Elections staff for going above and beyond this election season. She thanked Becky Galliher, elections director, for the painstaking hours she has spent to make sure everything runs smoothly.

There is no voting at the Board of Elections on Monday, November 2 or Tuesday, November 3. On Election Day, voters must vote at their precinct.

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