Thursday, December 11, 2014

In attendance: J. Donaldson; D. Cofrancesco; A. Levison; R. Wilson; P. Marone; C. Goldberg; V. Gallo; A. Hanke.   Ex officio: L. Balch; D. Culligan, L. Fox, J. Laudano, R. Currier, staff. Guests: C. DiMenna and L. Usowski.  

Not in attendance: R. Ivins; M. Rochow; L. DeNegre; A. Sofair; B. Scott-Moore.   


President Donaldson called the regular meeting to order at 4:55 p.m. following a holiday celebration with staff. She wished everyone a happy holiday season.


A motion to accept the October 23, 2014 minutes made by D. Cofrancesco, seconded by R. Wilson and voted unanimously with a correction of names in attendance: R. Wilson and M. Rochow were present.  


L. Balch presented the financial report for the period ending November 30, 2014. She reported:

  • Target: 41.67%; Revenue: 46.73% (with grants 53.54%); Expense: 40.12% (with grants 38.21%.)   
  • She stated that there are no major financial issues at this time. She is currently working on the budget for next fiscal year and will have a better sense of where issues are.
  • The Union has voted in favor of a new health insurance plan through the CT Partnership (United Health Care/Oxford), to commence January 1, 2015. The plan will cost the district an additional $20,000 however if the current plan (Anthem) was continued, it would have been an additional $29,000. The benefits of this plan are significantly better than the Anthem plans available to QVHD as a small employer.

A motion to place the financial report on file was made by P. Marone, seconded by C. Goldberg and passed unanimously.

 At 5:05 p.m., a motion to move into the public hearing for the tattoo regulations was made by C. Goldberg, seconded by A. Hanke and passed unanimously.

 At 5:25 p.m., a motion to return to regular session was made by D. Cofrancesco, seconded by V. Gallo and passed unanimously.


 There were no reports from the Personnel Committee, the Finance Committee, SBHC or the Nominating Committee.   

 Special Projects Committee: Tattoo Regulations

Following the public hearing and comments on the proposed QVHD tattoo regulations, a motion to adopt the proposed QVHD tattoo regulations was made by C. Goldberg, seconded by V. Gallo and passed unanimously. These regulations take effect on January 1, 2015.


Health Education Report presented by D. Culligan:

  • Round 2 of the Hepatitis B immunizations for Woodbridge town employees has been completed.
  • An update on blood borne pathogens and communicable diseases was made to No. Haven Community Services staff.
  • QVHD website: The section “It’s the Season” now has content. A special log-in page has been created for Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) members. Messages intended for volunteers only can be posted on this page as they are not accessible to the public.  
  • Disease surveillance has been very active over the last four weeks, with two cases of tuberculosis and several cases of diarrheal illness including two cases in a daycare.
  • Three grants have been submitted: One grant is for capacity building of the MRC; one grant is for a larger project through the MRC; and one grant has been submitted to the Rotary Club for Mom’s Clinic.
  • The QVHD Annual report was distributed to Board members. Questions on the report will be addressed at the next QVHD Board meeting.

 Report of the Director of Health by L. Balch:

 Meeting Dates for 2015: L. Balch distributed the proposed QVHD Board of Health meeting dates for 2015.The dates are:

January 22, March 26, April 23, May 28, June 25, September 24 and December 10. J. Donaldson asked the Board to consider adding an additional meeting date in October. A motion was made to accept the meeting dates as presented with the addition of October 22, by R. Wilson, seconded by D. Cofrancesco and passed unanimously.

 Food Service Regulation Amendment:

Prior to voting on the adoption of the proposed amendments to the QVHD Food Service Regulations, the following discussion/comments ensued:

  • J. Donaldson reported that there were about nine persons from the restaurant community representing about four food services. She requested feedback from Board members who attended the hearing. Responses were that the hearing was productive and Board members were impressed by the responses by staff to the public. They also felt that some valid issues were raised.
  • L. Balch looked into the charge by hearing attendees that inspections are not equitable across all facilities because some have pre-arranged inspection visits. She noted that there are 15 establishments that open after 4:30 PM (after-hours establishments) the majority of time. Three after-hours establishments will continue to receive scheduled visits due to staff-safety concerns. The other after-hours establishments will be scheduled at end of day to minimize overtime hours; during daytime operational hour; or daytime events scheduled during inspection period.
  • The pilot test ratings recently completed by staff for approximately 24 Class III and IV establishments and an additional 48 ratings assigned retroactively, indicated  50% would have been rated “poor” and does not correlate well with the State score-rating system currently in place. Conclusion: The proposed rating system does not accurately reflect potential risk of food borne illness and needs further revision to serve the purposes of protecting and informing the public and emphasizing the need for compliance.
  • A. Hanke suggested that a public education campaign is needed on restaurant sanitation and scoring meaning. D. Culligan added that the public tends to think of the score as equal to a letter grade in school which is not the case. L. Balch agrees rating system will begin with, and include, a marketing component for health literacy.
  • L. Balch reported no opposition to a rating and posting system was recorded.

 V. Gallo made a motion to table the adoption of the proposed QVHD Food Service until the January QVHD Board meeting and charged management with presenting revised alternatives for consideration; seconded by D. Cofrancesco and passed unanimously. 

 Monitoring of Travelers: QVHD has been monitoring some travelers from West Africa. They have been compliant with the monitoring and do not pose any risk to the community.

 Texting for Preparedness: Two Yale EPH students have completed and submitted a texting for preparedness project for volunteers and emergency town contacts. They have offered assistance with implementation if needed while they continue their studies locally.

 Strategic Plan: J. Donaldson asked L. Balch about the status of the strategic plan. L. Balch will have it prepared for distribution at the next Board meeting.

  At 6:15 p.m., a motion to adjourn was made by C.Goldberg, seconded by D. Cofrancesco and passed unanimously

Minutes prepared by D. Culligan, QVHD staff.

 The next regular meeting of the Board of Health will be held January 22, 2014 at 4:30 P.M. at the QVHD office, 1151 Hartford Turnpike, North Haven CT 06473.