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JDA hears of hospital staff reductions

By Staff | Feb 2, 2018

The Rugby Job Development Authority board met last week at the JDA Office in Rugby to discuss various issues while the search continues for a new JDA Executive Director.

The meeting opened with a few words by Heart of America Medical Center CEO Patrick Branco speaking about recent layoffs, which were more than anticipated.

“I think the layoffs have now ended. I can’t guarantee there won’t be one or two more, but as of today the number is 37 total.” Branco said. “This includes layoffs, early retirements, resignations and terminations.” Branco expressed his remorse about the layoffs but indicated the hospital should be fine going forward.

The new reduction at the hospital took the percentages to approximately ten percent. In addition, the hospital’s day care center will now be open to the public.

Other meeting items discussed were as follows:

– The Executive Director Search committee reported on a light applicant pool, and have decided to extend the open position until February 12 to encourage more applicants to apply. Karin Fursather said the committee has posted the position in quite a few places, and will continue posting through the 12th.

– Mike McNeff, superintendent of Rugby Public Schools, reported on a Mental Health meeting which took place January 25th. The meeting discussed rural options for mental health. It it was decided that between the jail, social services and the school district in Rugby, there is a need to have mental health contractor in private practice, counselor or Master Social Worker hired. They will try to find someone that is available on contract to fill a position immediately.

– Father Tom Graner reported that the natural gas talks were postponed until January 30. The Rugby Housing Conference has been postponed until March.

– The Main Street initiative conference in Bismarck will be held February 12 & 13. Daunne Heilman has three tickets for people from Rugby to attend the event. Contact her for information.

– A discussion took place about who would be on the board going forward. Graner’s and Dave Cichos’ spots are coming to a close, but it was moved that they continue as is, until the new executive director is hired, and they will let the new Director implement the change.

– In other JDA business, Fursather agreed to coordinate with McNeff to ensure the 1099 forms for student loans are sent out before the end of the month.

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