Update, July 19, 2023
The Marion County Board of Commissioners on Wednesday unanimously approved grant funding to start a treatment program for people with both severe mental illness and intellectual or developmental disabilities.
The county will pay $1.2 million to B2 Community Care to cover costs of purchasing and renovating a residential treatment home, bringing on qualified workers and starting up the program.
The state-licensed agency, which is based in McMinnville and provides group home services, has already selected a home to buy, according to Christina Bertschi, human services program supervisor for Marion County. The contract said the home would be in the Salem area.
Bertschi told commissioners at the meeting that the contractor has already hired workers for the program and also intends to hire a qualified mental health professional. She said they expect to open the home by April 2024.
The home would be licensed by the state Office of Developmental Disabilities Services, but it would provide behavioral health treatment designed for people who also have serious and persistent mental illness, Bertschi said at the meeting.
Commissioners also approved a contract with Clackamas County to provide juvenile detention beds for youth to be moved to Marion County in “unforeseen emergency situations,” according to the agreement.
Marion County would request reimbursement each month for such costs. The contract is capped at $500,000.
Clackamas County does not have a detention center for minors, according to Troy Gregg, director of the Marion County Juvenile Department.
The Donald E. Long Juvenile Detention Home in Multnomah County, which Clackamas County contracts with, is reducing its available beds. Gregg said at the meeting that Clackamas officials contacted him with concerns that there wouldn’t be enough space for shorter-term stays – typically around 10-15 days for less serious offenses.
He said the Marion County’s facility has 32 beds, with around 16 to 18 currently occupied at a time.
The board also approved a $1.2 million contract with Salem-based Day Wireless Systems for providing modifications for Marion County emergency vehicles through June 2026.
Dennis Mansfield, deputy director of the county’s Public Works Department, said at the board meeting that the additions would include lights, sirens, radios and computer stations.
According to the contract, 130 vehicles need such upfitting. But Commissioner Danielle Bethell clarified at the meeting that not all those will be remodeled, as some county vehicles are replaced each year.
Mansfield told commissioners that around 10 to 20 vehicles are replaced annually.
The services would be paid for by the Consolidated Fleet Fund, to which each department pays a monthly lease rate to buy, modify and maintain their vehicles.
The board unanimously approved or advanced other agenda items, including improvements to the Buena Vista Ferry, installing catwalks on the Polk Tower and replacing signage and road delineators along North Fork Road that were damaged by wildfire in 2020.
Original story below:
The Marion County Board of Commissioners on Wednesday will consider a contract to develop a residential treatment program for people with co-occurring intellectual or developmental disabilities and severe mental illness.
READ IT: AGENDA
The county would pay $1.2 million to McMinnville-based B2 Community Care, a state-licensed agency that provides group home services, to create a new residential treatment home. The home would be licensed by the state Office of Developmental Disabilities Services, but its behavioral health treatment would be designed for people who also have serious and persistent mental illness, according to the agenda item.
The commissioners meet at 9 a.m. Wednesday in the Senator Hearing Room at 555 Court Street N.E. Anyone can attend or sign up to give public comment in-person at the meeting. The meeting is streamed live on YouTube.
In case of emergency
Commissioners will also consider a $1.2 million contract with Salem-based Day Wireless Systems for providing modifications for Marion County emergency vehicles, including lights and sirens, through June 2026. The services would be paid for by the Consolidated Fleet Fund, to which each department pays a monthly lease rate to buy, modify and maintain their vehicles.
The board will also consider a $500,000 agreement with Clackamas County for “unforeseen emergency situations” when Marion County would provide juvenile detention beds for youth from Clackamas County, according to the agenda. Marion County would request reimbursement each month for such costs.
Commissioners will also consider a $563,000 agreement with the state Department of Transportation for improvements to the Buena Vista Ferry.
The work would include installing two catwalks on the Polk tower, which “will improve worker safety during tower and cable maintenance operations,” the agenda said. About $450,000 would be paid for by federal funding, with the county covering the rest.
Commissioners will consider adding $54,000 to a contract with Mid Valley Excavation for installing information signs and road delineators along North Fork Road which were damaged in the 2020 Beachie Creek Fire. The new contract would total $146,500 and extend the project by four weeks to Aug. 31.
The Contract Review Board will consider using a construction manager or general contractor to oversee wastewater and drinking water system improvements for the Brooks-Hopmere area, the county’s largest unincorporated community. State and county contracting rules require that the board find there is a public benefit to using an alternative contracting method besides such steps as bidding.
Also on the agenda
Commissioners will consider adding $50,000 to an agreement with Polk County under which the counties “work together to focus on the control of communicable disease and further public health modernization efforts,” according to the agenda. The new contract would total $178,600 and be extended to the end of the year.
They will also consider distributing $50,800 in revenue from timber sales in the county. The largest amounts would be $18,000 to the North Santiam School District #29J, $17,700 to Marion County and $11,700 to the County School Fund.
Contact reporter Ardeshir Tabrizian: [email protected] or 503-929-3053.
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Ardeshir Tabrizian has covered criminal justice and housing for Salem Reporter since September 2021. As an Oregon native, his award-winning watchdog journalism has traversed the state. He has done reporting for The Oregonian, Eugene Weekly and Malheur Enterprise.