Now that the rush to hear workforce bills is past, I can start holding hearings in my Child Abuse and Neglect Committee. Last year our goal was to identify the problems within the system. We found several areas that we thought we could improve so this session our goal is to find solutions. I'm going to start by asking the Department to show us their methods of hiring and training case workers, investigators, and supervisors. I think we can improve the large turnover numbers by working with the Department to change some of these procedures. Another thing that I think we have to address is the step process that is supposed to be in place to fairly compensate case workers and investigators. An alarming number of employees are still at entry level wages after several years on the job. We intend to take testimony from current as well as former employees to determine if there is a pattern to the turnover.
We attended the Legislative update at Crowder College on Thursday and Dr. Farnsworth did an excellent job of pointing out Crowder's plan for the future. They are fully aware that education in the future will be even more challenging and we were asked to share ideas on how to best serve students from this area. I am extremely proud of Crowder and the Leadership and Staff are second to none!
Friday evening we went to the American Legion in Pineville for their third Friday dinner. The fellowship was great but the corned beef and cabbage was excellent! They had a great crowd as usual.
Saturday evening we were at the Heart of Education Banquet honoring Ross and Vicki Babbitt. What a show we were treated to! The MCHS Dynamic Divas, the Rhapsody 'N' Rhythm, and the MCHS Jazz Band were all fantastic! The Culinary Students did a wonderful job with dinner and the evening was a fantastic success honoring two people who truly believe as Vicki stated "The youth are the future of our country and we invest in them and their education". Thank you Ross and Vicki!
I was asked to mention the 1/2 cent sales tax proposal that will be on the ballot in Seneca. The police and fire departments will split the revenue to improve and expand their services. Several years of declining sales tax revenues make it impossible for the departments to plan for expansion in the south part of town. this looks like a timely increase to me.
More next week, until then I am and remain in your service.