Montgomery County Public Health Relies on General Aid | News

(Red Oak) — There is a change in the administration of general emergency services in Montgomery County.

Earlier this week, the Montgomery County Board of Supervisors approved the transfer of general assistance duties to the county’s public health office. The move comes in the wake of Sonia Jackson’s recent retirement as the county’s general manager. Currently, General Aid provides emergency rent and utility assistance, emergency food assistance — including working with local food pantries — and funeral assistance for needy customers. General Assistance also provides protective beneficiary services through Social Security and notary services.

County Public Health Administrator Samantha Beeson told supervisors her department would assist customers who needed these services.

“Sonia is the county’s beneficiary for eleven people,” Beeson said. “So with that we have to get the ball rolling. It’s about SSI and getting someone other than Sonia into all these people’s checking accounts so that their bills can still be paid and they can still get their money. .”

Beeson says it’s important that those services continue uninterrupted.

“When it comes down to it, we don’t have anyone in line,” he said. “then these people go without anyone, and their money will essentially just be frozen until someone is assigned to be the beneficiary.”

Supervisor Donna Robinson says the county’s public health board recently approved the proposal. However, Robinson says the move does not minimize the importance of general aid.

“We’re not taking the overall assistance position lightly,” Robinson said, “that it’s not important, and we’re not replenishing it. We’re just looking to make it a little bit more cost-effective for the county. But it won’t.” are less important, and the people who get this help from the general emergency department will still get everything they got in the past.”

Robinson also thanked Jackson for her more than 20 years of service to the county. In other cases, supervisors on Tuesday approved the contract for services with Red Oak Public Library for fiscal year 2023, totaling $17,820, as well as a contract with Nishna Productions for services in the new fiscal year, totaling more than $1,574.

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