Hello, Hamilton County

  E-News for Hamilton County Citizens and Employees

October 14, 2002


Quote of the Week:  “Once the mind has been stretched by a new idea, it will never again return to its original size."  Oliver Wendell Holmes

Hamilton County Awarded Distinguished Budget Presentation Award

  Hamilton County Administrative Services Budget Staff.

Back row (l-r): Terry Flowers, Karen McFarland, Eric Stuckey, Paula Knecht, Al Landis, Jim Cundiff.

Front row (l-r): Joe Huster, Lois Reynolds, Lisa Anderson, Joan Gilmore, Chris Berger.



For the tenth time in ten years, Hamilton County has been awarded the Distinguished Budget Presentation Award by the Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA).  The budget awards program is designed to encourage governments to prepare budget documents of the highest quality to meet the needs of decision-makers and citizens.  Hamilton County's budget has consistently presented budgets worthy of recognition by the GFOA.  Congratulations and thanks to Eric Stuckey, Assistant County Administrator for Administrative Services, the budget staff, and to the many departmental staff who prepare the budgets.


   2002 Flu Shot Schedule Click To Download

Thanks for your patience as we get the 2002 Flu Shot Program up and running. We're pleased to report there's been no word of a vaccine shortage from our flu shot vendor, Health Works. Posters were just delivered on Friday, so employees will soon see them around your buildings.

Remember: Humana-ChoiceCare members should bring their health care cards for identification in order to receive their flu shot for free. Nonmembers will have a $13 co-pay. Employees can save time by completing the Flu Shot Consent Form and bringing it with them.


  Election Time Approaches:  Are You Registered?
We encourage all Hamilton County staff to register for and vote in Ohio's November 5th general election. This election, like all elections, is an important one.  We will select our statewide leadership for the next four years and vote on several improtant local issues.

The Hamilton County Board of Elections (BoE) website provides information on voter registration, absentee voting, polling locations, ballot contents, poll worker recruitment, results and other information pertaining to the election.  There is to link to the BoE on the Hamilton County website.



Community Development NACCED Award Recipient


The Department of Community Development recently received an award from the National Association for County Community and Economic Development (NACCED), an affiliate of the National Association of Counties (NACo), for its participation in the formation of the Homeless Clearinghouse.  The Homeless Clearinghouse is a group of representatives from Hamilton County, Cincinnati, the Homeless Coalition of Greater Cincinnati, and the Partnership Center, who meet regularly to discuss issues that affect the homeless community.  The following is a brief summary of the Homeless Clearinghouse, published in the NACCED Awards of Excellence Brochure: 

“Communication between the City of Cincinnati, Hamilton County, and Homeless Providers was not consistent throughout the year. As crises arose, a haphazard approach was taken to resolve problems.  A group of leaders was assembled representing the City, County, Homeless Providers, and the Continuum of Care, to meet regularly to address and forward homeless issues to the appropriate agency or jurisdiction for resolution.  Called the ‘Homeless Clearinghouse,’ this group has been instrumental in helping preserve one shelter, and make an orderly transition for families of another shelter facing financial failure.  It has fostered good will and trust among these participants.” 

This Award of Excellence, for the category of Homeless Coordination/Assistance, was received by Dan Domis and Susan Walsh at the NACCED Annual Meeting in White Plains, New York, on September 20, 2002.  Dan has been active in NACCED for many years, and is a Past-President.  Susan will serve as Vice-Chair of the Housing Committee for NACCED in 2003.


The Metropolitan Sewer District Has Had A Very Busy Summer

   MSD co-hosted the Combined Sewer Overflow (CSO) Control Workshop August 1and 2, 2002; hosted a Collection System Modeling Symposium on August 21 –23rd and MSD environmental professionals were the topic of a National Public Radio (NPR) story.

The CSO Control Workshop was given in conjunction with the CSO Partnership and the Northern Kentucky Sanitation District No. 1.  The workshop was held at the Cincinnati Netherland Hilton Plaza.

Experts who have led the national CSO Control debate since the early 1990s presented material covered during this workshop.  These experts developed many of the award-winning CSO programs nationwide.  In addition, key agency officials have been invited to speak about issues they are dealing with that will impact our CSO control efforts.

Patrick T. Karney, Director Cincinnati MSD spoke on MSD’s CSO successes and shared his perspectives on the key issues that face CSO community program managers.  The workshop also featured speakers from the engineering/consulting firms that have developed some of the most cost-effective, innovative, and award winning CSO control programs nationwide.  They are part of the CSO Partnership’s Technical Advisory Council.  The workshop brought together leading CSO control professionals who provided the latest thoughts and practices related to CSO control.  After this workshop attendees were better equipped to deal successfully with the key issues associated with maturing CSO control programs.

For more information on the CSO Partnership contact Mark Poland, Executive Secretary at 804-698-2026 or visit the CSO Partnership web page at: http://www.csop.com.




MSD Collection System Modeling Symposium a  great success!

The Modeling Symposium was held at The Vernon Manor hotel in Cincinnati.  Speakers from as far away as Denmark joined 140 participants from all over the US and Canada for two days of intensive discussion on how these computerized models support decision-making in modern wastewater systems.  The purpose of the symposium was to bring together professionals, educators, and community leaders from around the world to share their experience and ideas.



“Dirty Work”
The NPR radio article “Dirty Work” featured several MSD environmental professionals and was broadcast on August 29.  Mike Nalley kept in touch with the story and has links to it from the MSD web site. 

The "Dirty Work" of Sewer Maintenance and Treatment
If you tuned into National Public Radio's feature "Dirty Work," you now know a bit about how MSD's inspectors and maintenance crews help keep wastewater flowing. The story, broadcast August 29, 2002,  (NPR story and audio), followed several MSD environmental professionals down a line serving a large portion of western Cincinnati. As a follow-up, we thought you might like to know a bit more about them and what they do.

Members of MSD's Wastewater Collection and Wastewater Treatment Divisions were interviewed before, during and after tours of the Lick Run CSO facility and Mill Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant. The NPR story's focus was on sewer inspectors, but MSD's environmental professionals do "dirty work" all through the collection and treatment processes. NPR's Jack Speer and Melissa Gray experienced the sewers firsthand; perhaps a little more detail is enough for you. (If not, you can contact us about a tour).

Mike’s complete article with photos can be found at:  http://msdgc.org.  For more information on this story, please contact Ann Newsom, MSD Public Information Officer, at 513.557.7110.

  State Justice Institute Grant Program – FY2003 Scholarships And Technical Assistance
This program provides financial support to judicial personnel who wish to attend advanced education programs.  Grant funds may be used to pay for costs associated with outside judicial education programs, graduate education programs and other training that addresses priority topics established by the State Justice Institute. 

Eligibility:  individual full-time judges of state or local trial and appellate courts, court managers, full-time professional, state or local court personnel with management responsibilities, and supervisory and management probation personnel in judicial branch probation offices. 

Technical Assistance
The purpose of this program is help judicial institutions obtain outside help in improving their administration of justice and the skills and knowledge of court personnel.  Funds may be used to help diagnose, develop and implement projects responding to significant judicial problems. 

A state or local court may receive a grant of up to $30,000.  A 50% match is required for project grants. 

For further information on these programs, please contact Cindy Weitlauf, Hamilton County Grants Coordinator.  Her phone number is 513.946.4317.


                   Click To Download

                        “Leaf” it to Recycling!   

Click To Download
  Once again fall has begun and the leaves are starting to fall.  When you start raking your leaves, remember to dispose of them properly.  Rather than tossing your yardwaste in the garbage, protect the environment by reducing the amount of solid waste going into local landfills by recycling your leaves.  If the community you live in does not offer a regular yardwaste pickup, the Hamilton County Solid Waste Management District provides free yardwaste recycling drop-off sites at the three following locations: 

East:   Evans Landscaping, 3700 Roundbottom Road in Newtown

West:  Kuliga Park, 6717 Bridgetown Road in Green Township

North: Rumpke Sanitary Landfill, Struble Road and Colerain Ave. in Colerain Township 

All sites will be open until November 17, 2002, on Saturdays and Sundays, from 11:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.  The sites will resume operations on January 4, 2003 through January 11, 2003 on Saturdays only, from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.   The Evans Landscaping site (East location) is open for free yardwaste drop-off during regular business hours in addition to the above hours of operation. 

For a list of yardwaste drop-off rules, please visit www.hcdoes.org/sw/yarddrop.htm

An even better alternative to yardwaste disposal is composting.  Composting is a great way to recycle all types of yardwaste and save you time and money!  Compost, sometimes called humus, is an ideal mulch, potting soil amendment, or top dressing for a flower bed or vegetable garden.  A compost pile naturally breaks down yardwaste into compost right in your backyard, saving you the time and energy of bagging yardwaste, storing it, and then hauling it to the curb or drop-off center. 

The basics you need to start composting include a 3-ft. x 3-ft. x 3-ft. space, a bin, and the materials to compost.  A bin is recommended, but not essential.  It provides a more attractive, controlled environment to contain the materials.  You can make your own bin of wire, bricks, or wood, or you can purchase a bin at select lawn and garden stores. 

Items you can compost include leaves, plants, coffee grounds, tea bags, grass, flowers, pine needles, wood chips, shredded newspaper, bread and more!  Do not compost oils, fats, grease, bone, meat, salad dressing, diseased plants or weeds, butter or dairy products or cat or dog manure.  These items can attract rodents and raccoons and cause odors in your compost pile. 

There are a variety of uses for your finished compost.  Annual use of compost will eventually reduce the need for fertilizer.  Compost produced through the organic processes of a compost pile is ideal for gardens, flower beds, household plants, and trees.  Gardeners recommend using compost as a mulch or mixing it into top soil as a soil amendment. 

For more information on composting or yardwaste, please call 513.946.7755 to request your free copy of our Yardwaste at Home Handbook, or visit www.hcdoes.org.

Please remember to post  Hello, Hamilton County in your areas so that everyone can see what's going on!
Thank you to everyone who contributed to this issue.  

Hello, Hamilton County is published twice monthly on the County's external and internal web pages.  It is intended to inform both residents and staff of Hamilton County.  If you have questions or suggestions for future editions, please contact Sharon Booker (946.4428) or Peter Hames (946.4432) in the County Administrator's office.