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  • Writer's pictureCharlene Sims, Journal staff

Commission approves applying for annual grants on a 2-1 vote

Updated: Jul 7, 2023


MOUND CITY – Linn County Health Department Administrator Missy LanCaster reported on the activities at the health department the past week and asked the commissioners to approve the four grants that she had given them to look at last week. The grants were only approved by two of the commissioners, Jim Johnson voted against them.

The grant applications, which were due at noon on Wednesday, March 15, were for grants that the health department renews every year, and they bring in nearly $52,000 annually for various expenses. Most of the money, however, goes toward salaries.


Commission Chair Danny McCullough asked LanCaster to go over the grants and explain them.

She explained that none of the grants were COVID grants and that they were some of the basic grants that the health department has been funded by for years.


She said the grants included:

  • A grant from the state for $7,000 and requires a 100% match from the county. It pays for salaries

  • A maternal child health (MCH) grant is $27,030 and funds outreach to mothers and kids. Besides salaries, it is used for activities like the community baby shower and kids health fair that the county holds every year. The MCH requires a 40% match.

  • The Public Health Emergency Preparedness (PHEP) grant of $13,467 is for salaries and emergency preparedness activities.

  • The Immunization Action Plan (IAP) grant of $4,240 goes 100% for salaries.

After her explanation of the grants, Johnson said he just did not fully understand them.


McCullough asked Johnson what he wanted to ask Lancaster.


“I just can’t understand the breakdown of them, I guess, it may be me,” said Johnson.


“Do you want to ask her anything so she can educate us on it?” asked McCullough.


“No, not right now,” said Johnson.


Commissioner Jason Hightower said that the county needed to have these grants to keep the health department running.


When the grants came up for a vote, Johnson voted against the grants. Johnson voted to approve these same grants last year.


Lancaster’s weekly report on health department activities showed there were 42 contacts made by the health department during the past week. There were two COVID tests, five COVID case routings, one blood pressure, one client education, one family planning, two grant work, 20 phone contacts, one strep test, one virtual webinar, four women, infant, and children (WIC) contacts, and four WIC re-certificatons.

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