County Legislature plans to wait before creating new position

MAYVILLE Chautauqua County legislators have made it clear they want to be financially smart before creating a new county position.

That’s why a resolution to hire a compliance/privacy officer, which has been in discussion since February, was tabled once again at Wednesday night’s meeting.

John Runkle, R-Stockton, made a motion to table the local law providing for a management salary plan for a new compliance/privacy officer, which would entail a salary range of $43,131-$66,053.

The job description requires that the individual maintain policies and procedures involving medical billing, payments and mandatory reporting for the general operation of the county’s medical compliance program and its related activities to prevent illegal conduct.

“The position is essential,” said County Executive Vince Horrigan, adding that currently, a County Home employee has been performing the same job tasks through a contract with The Bonadio Group of Rochester. “We need to move that position over to the county, so that’s why it’s technically considered an additional position.”

Seeing as how budget season is approaching, Horrigan said the legislature wants to look at the position in the context of the county’s 2015 spending plan.

“I’m confident that once they see the importance of this function, they’ll move forward with it. I believe we’ll actually save money,” he said. “It also protects the county against a tremendous amount of risk so it’s something we have to do.”

In other budget news, legislator Pierre Chagnon, R-Bemus Point, presented the legislature with suggestions from the Environmental Subcommittee.

The committee suggested that the legislature encourage the county Board of Health to update the county’s sanitary code to require a mandatory septic system inspection every 10 years, with priority given to the Chautauqua Lake watershed.

Also, Chagnon said the legislature will need to increase county support of the Chautauqua County Soil and Water Conservation District in the 2015 budget by $35,000 in order to assist in improving phosphorus management for urban stormwater runoff and agricultural runoff.

“We will be filing the appropriate and necessary resolutions for consideration by this legislature next month for our future meetings,” Chagnon said.

The Environmental Subcommittee is composed of legislators Chagnon; Jay Gould, R-Ashville; Ron Lemon, R-Frewsburg; PJ Wendel, R-Jamestown; and Dave Wilfong, R-Jamestown.

There were no legislators absent from Wednesday night’s meeting.