Niemann Proposes Recognition at County Board Meetings for Distinguished Service


Published on June 17 2019 5:37 pm
Last Updated on June 18 2019 12:50 pm
Written by Greg Sapp


Effingham County Board Chairman Jim Niemann told the Board Monday that he would like to establish criteria for those who have displayed distinguished service to be recognized at the monthly Board meetings.

Niemann raised the matter at last week's Road and Bridge Committee meeting. That was the meeting where county residents Gerald White, Jr. and Kenny Tipsword again sought a sign in memory of county native Keith Tipsword, who died aboard the USS West Virginia in the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941.

Niemann said Monday the recognition would be for those "who've gone above and beyond". Time would be allotted at each monthly Board meeting for the recognition. He suggested the chairmen of the Tax and Finance Committee and the Legislative Committee would work with him to establish the criteria.

We will continue to update you on the proposal.

The Board gave recognition Monday to Darren Feldkamp for his 22 years' service to the Effingham County Sheriff's Department as a deputy. Feldkamp worked in various roles, most notably as a School Resource Officer in Effingham Unit 40.

Board members allocated hotel/motel tax dollars; $1,500 for the Lake Sara fireworks display and $4.000 to the Effingham County Fair. It was decided to allot no funds for maintenance of the TREC Trail, and it was agreed to again abate the GIS fee providing free access for the cities of Effingham and Altamont.

The Board voted to seek proposals on audit work with the proposals due August 14; amended the salary schedule since the staffers of the County Clerk and County Treasurer offices have voted to de-certify their union local through the Southern Illinois Laborers District Council and will now be part of the regular salary schedule; and approved revised animal control rules.

Board members approved several appointments; Phillip Toops to the Airport Commission; Joe Thoele, John Beckman and Lyle Westfall to the Farmland Assessment Review Committee; Vicki Bushur and Marjorie Lancaster to the Board of Health; Betsy Scott to the 708 Board; and David Budde and Larry Thies to the 911 Board.

Toops, who serves as the transportation director for the county's network of buses, reported that the paperwork has been received for a 26-passenger vehicle and that another unit is on its way; and that work continues to assume operation of the transportation system for Community Support Systems including the drivers riding along on the CSS routes with the current carrier later this month.

County Clerk and Chief Election Authority Kerry Hirtzel reported that his office will be purging the voter rolls in the next few weeks, as is required by statute every two years. Board Vice-Chairman Dave Campbell reminded that $35,000 is available to aid new or expanding businesses; and kudos were given Chief Deputy Sheriff Paul Kuhns who oversaw the repair of the County Office Building elevator that is now back in operation.