Pella Chronicle

Local News

April 16, 2013

Controversy at Board of Health meeting

Knoxville — Director Karen Goff of the Marion County Board of Health threatened to walk out of Tuesday morning's meeting because of the way the meeting was being run. 

Chair Pat Van Zante, along with Public Health Director Kim Dorn, recently attended a Governor's Conference. At this conference, they attended a session that addressed Robert's "Rules of Order" and its proper use during board meetings.

The bylaws of the Board of Health, adopted June 20, 2006 and revised Dec. 12, 2012, indicate that Robert's "Rules of Order, Revised" will govern board meetings in all cases wherein they do not conflict with the board's bylaws. 

Van Zante was concerned about the way the previous board meeting ran and wanted to provide some structure to the meetings. Goff also expressed concerns about the "interruptions and side conversations" that took place in March. 

"I thought we were interrupted a lot," Goff said. 

Goff's actions regarding Robert's Rules was triggered with a discussion regarding Dorn's evaluation. Dorn's last evaluation was held in November, but Van Zante proposed moving Dorn's next evaluation to May, to align it with other personnel reviews. 

Craig Agan, who represents the Marion County Board of Supervisors on the Board of Health, disagreed. 

"I wouldn't support that," Agan said. "Kim has been instructed to do her employee evaluations before we do hers." 

Agan made a motion to move the evaluation. Moving the evaluation was not listed on the posted agenda, and Van Zante indicated that motions had to be written. 

Agan stated that it would have been more proper for the decision, to closely follow Robert's rules, be made by the entire board. Goff agreed, saying that she is not comfortable with her role on the board yet. She was concerned about making decisions on things she was not fully informed about. 

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