Nobody Wins In Ongoing Legal Battle

Mahaska County Board of Supervisors and E911/EMC Vice Chair at a recent meeting of the E911 Board.

Mahaska County Board of Supervisors and E911/EMC Vice Chair at a recent meeting of the E911 Board.

Oskaloosa, Iowa – In the continuing legal wrangling between the Mahaska County Board of Supervisors and the E911 Board and Mahaska County Emergency Management Commission, the EMC board met in session on Thursday evening.

The EMC board then took up the request from the E911 Board to pay for that board’s attorney fees, because according to the 28E agreement, EMC is responsible for the day-to-day operations of E911.

EMC last year spent 27 thousand dollars on legal fees, as they prepared documents for a new radio system, then defending themselves against the board of supervisor action.

The EMC Board had only budgeted $2500 last fiscal year, and the difference was made up when salaried individuals took overtime shifts instead of paying hourly employees.

“We’ll do the same,” said Robinson of this year’s budget, which is 25 thousand dollars.

EMC Chairman and Mahaska County Sheriff, Russ Van Renterghem, said that under the current situation, “We don’t have any other choice but to pay the attorney fees [for E911 Board]. We provide the funding for 911, the way it exists now.”

“Just so you know, our attorney has already spoken with Mike Mahaffy,” said EMC Vice Chair Mark Groenendyk, who is also a Mahaska County Supervisor and the driving voice behind the lawsuits against E911/EMC.

University Park Mayor George Toubekis said, “Who’s paying for all these attorneys?”

“The taxpayers,” replied Groenendyk.

“Correct,” said Toubekis. “Who’s paying for the lack of radio service?”

“Taxpayers and the first responders,” said Groenendyk.

“Right,” Toubekis said. “Who wins in the end of this?”

“Nobody,” replied Groenendyk.

With that, the Mahaska County Emergency Management Commission ended their meeting.

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Posted by on Aug 12 2018. Filed under Local News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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