Lincoln County Board of Health
February 9th, 2021 Public Meeting
Summary
By Sally Durham

2:36 Review of agenda

The Board had training with Dan Clark from Montana State University on Parliamentary Procedure, suggested they make changes to the agenda.

3:03 Public comment on agenda items, 3 minutes allowed from the public commenters, so long as it is relevant to the board of health and respectful.

7:20 DC Orr from Libby Public Comment:

Reviewed a video showing a nomination. The meeting was interrupted twice with nominees who were not seconded. People are showing no confidence in the Board during a global pandemic. People all over the county are writing letters to the editor. The board would have an opportunity to clean up those minutes, but DC said he expects them to tell the truth, stating that there’s been a dishonest attempt to change the public record. Montana code 45-7-208 “Tampering with Public Record”, states that knowingly making a false entry into the record is breaking the law. Also brought up the DPHHS document is 11 pages, but the board only reported 10. The last page gives board authorities that the law does not.

10:34 Catherine: Public Comment

1) Appreciates the public comment time of the meeting being moved to the front of the meeting, but it looks like they can’t comment on action items any longer. Because comments are not before action items, she wants to know if public opinion will really be considered before decisions are made. Because large portions of the meeting pass before the comment can be given, public comment could be forgotten or ignored. She was unhappy that public comment is abbreviated in the minutes and there was talk of abbreviating them even further. Condensing them so much misrepresents or changes what the person said. She wants the minutes to reflect the actual comments as she presented them. She will be sending a copy of her comments to her Eureka Representative Debra Armstrong.

2) Under Environmental Health, the DPHHS cooperative agreement should not be signed as it is. Even though it is an annual agreement, there is "an obviously tacked on section" (page numbered 11/10 so she’s not even sure how it is legal or wasn’t noticed) labelled “COVID 19 Related Work”, stipulates inspections that are not codified in the Montana Code. This is an attempt to assert powers not delegated by the MCA or specific to the MCA, and thus is not compliant with the MCA or our state constitution. Please table the discussion until the non-compliant section has been deleted.

3) Approval of minutes. All mention of Scott Barnhardt being eliminated from the vote despite being nominated has been removed. Reality and truth do matter.

13:38 Diane: Public Commentor

1) Agreed re: mtg minutes and Scott Barnhardt.

2) Re: PCR test. It is being acknowledged as having too high a threshold rate. She wants the minutes to reflect that this issue has been brought up 4-5 times and requests to know the threshold rates. These answers have never been provided. The only information they received was that it was above 30. The information came out that it caused a lot of false positives. She requested a breakdown: how many people were asymptomatic, how many had mild symptoms, how many were severe, and what the treatment was. She’s concerned about the treatment because there is no information about the use of Ivermectin or hydroxychloroquine, both of which have been shown to be very effective. It could have saved lives.

3) Re: Informed Consent according to the Nuremberg Code. There have been a number of people who have experienced adverse effects and quite a number of elderly who are dying in the nursing homes after receiving this biological experimental device. It would be good to have a response from the board about how the informed consent is being conducted. She has concerns that the PCR test might be inappropriate. It doesn’t have a long history and that’s usually how tests are established. There has to be a history of that test being used for that condition.

16:31 End of Public comment

16:50 DC Orr requested to have one more public comment about a non-agenda item. The Board has a confidence crisis. People just don’t believe what’s coming from the board. He recounted an incident at a Council meeting in Feb. City Council has a standing agenda item for the health board. Chairman Ivers was there. She never spoke up with the health board report despite it being on the agenda. He found out Chairman Ivers had a meeting in secret with the City Council after the public had left. He wants to know what they talked about

18:08- Chairman said DC didn’t have his facts right. He asked if she would answer his question. She said she would not and dismissed DC to sit down.

18:33 Catherine Re: 2 non-agenda items.

1) There’s a lawyer (Jennifer Merryman) that sits in on the meetings. What is her role exactly and who does she represent, the Health Board members, the residents of the county, or the county itself? Why did she sit there and allow Scott Barnhardt to be eliminated from the vote? She might also explain why there is a page 11 out of 10 on the document to be signed. Why did she allow the agreement to be put on the agenda that way? Did she read it? Did she not notice that it is not compliant with the Montana Code?

2) Concerned about the push of the COVID 19 vaccine by the Health Officer, which is not really a vaccine at all, but rather an MRNA treatment shot. There needs to be research done on the Adverse Reaction Recording Website. How many people are dying and being injured by this treatment? Information should be given to the public regarding other treatment options including natural treatments and Ivermectin.

20:37 Approval of minutes. They follow Robert Rules of Order. There will be much less detail. The minutes are not a place for opinion. Also, board members should be prepared to limit the amount of time spent on each item.

Nov 23 minutes approved

Jan 13 minutes. Josh Letcher proposed an amendment to the minutes. In the section titled “Action Item Board Recommendation” regarding an election made, the action was taken without a motion. Deb started a vote for Patty Kinshlow, was interrupted, and it turned into a roll call vote. According to bylaws, a motion has to be made.

27:13- Third to the last page (hard to hear) there needs to be a correction made on a name. Sara was replaced by Laura.

Chair says they will minimize mistakes going forward

Minutes were accepted as amended and corrected. One person opposed by phone. Chair said amendments can be written up and submitted for approval.

Unfinished Business

31:15 Re: Operating Procedure #2. Chair recommends revision to the procedure after a workshop they attended. Bylaws need to be updated. Ground rules need amendments for public meetings. She proposes that there be a work meeting for board members, an open meeting so people can attend. Board members should be thinking about appropriate wording. We will discuss it at the end. After the work meeting, they will present it at the board of health meeting. The suggestion was approved by other members. Meetings will be scheduled for 4 hours biweekly. Meetings will be posted as all meetings are.

33:39 New Business

Cathy talking about the community report. Re: communication for COVID related to their website. They are contracted with Jeff Peterson, who has recorded a number of videos of Dr. Black, Health Dept staff, other community members. He is posting them to their website. Videos include Dr. Black videos answering questions in the FAQ’s, making sure the FAQ’s are updated and accurate, virus mutations, the need to keep practicing social distancing, long term effects of COVID, how to get added to the vaccine list, Dr. Kelly Jared about vaccination, contact tracing, and a thank you to Lincoln County.

35:37 COVID UPDATE- Jen

Lincoln County allotted 300 vaccine’s per week, they’re working with their taskforce group and health care providers. Governor released more vaccines not assigned to long-term care being sent to Montana. Lincoln county received 300 more vaccines. Working with clinics. Gave the breakdown of how many vaccines per area and which clinics were helping to distribute them. Going forward the percentage of vaccines per area will be determined by population count. Most of the folks over seventy in Eureka received vaccination due to a large clinic. Important to remember there aren’t a lot of vaccines, and it’s a large list, so be patient. Health Dept already administered 800 first doses. 1700 doses total in Lincoln County. Numbers are not known for the VA out of Spokane, who have come up here to administer vaccines. The list of age 70 and above applicants is about 2k people and growing

39:52 Cal Burn North Lincoln County had questions re: videos. Wanted to know about videos regarding supplements people can take for prevention.

Chair interrupted. Supplements have come up before. They are individualized and must be discussed with the family provider because it would be negligent to give a blanket statement.

Deb- Are we consulting with providers before giving vaccines?

Chair- That is up to the individual.

Member- We definitely recommend each person talk to their provider.

Deb- There’s a study in Spain showing a high percentage of hospitalized patients were deficient in vitamin D. We should reconsider warning people about low vitamin D.

Chair - The people in this area have a high percentage of vitamin D deficiency due to the lower amount of sunlight.

Member- Question was raised about side effects from the vaccine. How are patients tracking this?

Member- Board gives the vaccinated patients the Board’s number and they are asked to call if they have an adverse reaction. They are also urging people to sign up for V-Safe (through the CDC). We haven’t seen local adverse reactions beyond pain at the injection site and feeling yucky for up to a day.

44:41 Environmental Health

Cathy- Explained annual cooperative agreement with DPHHS and The Board of Health is to establish a payment schedule to reimburse the board for plan reviews and inspections. The agreement includes $28k annually. Board agrees to do plan reviews and inspect retail food establishments, restaurants, grocery stores, wholesale foods, and body art establishments. They inspect trailer parks and campgrounds, but plan reviews are performed by the state. They opt out of inspecting pools and spas because there are only 2 such establishments in Lincoln County and it would cost more than would be reimbursed to keep the staff certified. Any part they do not complete will be done by the state. Reports audited quarterly. To receive funds, they need to inspect min 90% of applicable establishments. COVID-related work reimburses for alternate inspections (such as online inspections and telephone interviews) and time spent on extra inspections bringing businesses up to speed on state and local requirements. It doesn’t give extra authority but provides reimbursement of funds. DPHHS is aware of the error in page numbering. No plans have been shared about a pending correction. Language in the It does not give additional powers to the Board.

55:43, After clarifications were made on language in the agreement, the DPHHS agreement was approved by majority vote and signed.

57:18 Solid Waste and Recycling- Bryan Alkire

They review and update the plan every 5 years. The document itself is 250 pages long, he only included parts of the document for the meeting that they are changing. There is no timeline on insulation for the They set it up in Spring if we need it when doing disposal. So far, they’ve only been doing small dumping events. With everything bagged or burrito wrapped, it limits deconning. Everyone staying in a clean area. They’re minimizing the exposure well.

1:00:39 Asbestos Resource Program- Virginia

She and others will be making comments on class 4 ONM later.

Report- ARP received 22 total hotline calls last month including requests for DEQ status letter, calls on best management practices, and general property information. There were some calls outside the designated boundary looking for EPA investigation. 34 utility locate calls. 1 active abatement on Mineral Ave. 1 pending abatement in Troy. They’re hoping with the increased property sales, ARP will be called earlier in the process of a sale so people don’t run into problems. The regulation is working.

1:10:22 City Rep report- rescheduled

Eureka- Dr. Carvey reports Mountain View Manor nursing home has had no new cases. The last COVID outbreak details were given along with prescribed treatment. Neither patient required hospitalization and was isolated before the spread.

1:14:21 Health Officer report- Dr. Black

His focus is the vaccine. We’re making headway on the list with high-risk patients getting priority. There’s been a definite drop in the number of cases in the county. He has concerns about the variants. We can’t let our guard down till vaccinations are done. Denmark data shows a rise in UK variant. We hope we won’t have to deal with that, it’s just best to get the vaccine and keep up social distancing.

Deb comments- Referencing an email she forwarded to the Board and Dr. Black from a Cardio-Thoracic surgeon who gave a warning against the COVID vaccine. She wants the email to be made part of the official minutes.

Warning- COVID Sars 2 Virus has an affinity for certain bodily tissues. Antigens congregate in the epithelial lining of blood vessels after active or recent COVID infection. The vaccine targets the tissues where the antigens are, causing inflammation, especially in the elderly and frail, possibly causing blood clot formations. The surgeon recommends screening patients, especially those with cardiovascular disease, the elderly, and the frail, for recent or active infection prior to vaccination.

Chair- Affirms that vaccine is a personal choice. It is not mandatory. Recommends people talk to their provider before getting the vaccine.

Deb- Raised concerns that Dr. Black said in an email response to the warning that he is “totally comfortable with everyone getting the COVID vaccination”. Deb says we follow the science, but we’re getting ahead of the science. Vaccines are under emergency use authorization. They are not FDA approved. They are not approved because they haven’t met the stringent FDA safety guidelines. Inclusion criteria for phase 3 trials specifically excluded everyone other than healthy adults that did not have a current infection and with only stable comorbidities. The vaccine studies did not study the population included in this warning. Before we get overly enthusiastic about the vaccines, there are still many questions that have to be answered.

1:25:40 Josh Letcher- comments

The same advice to seek out the provider prior to the vaccine because of health concerns is given when vitamins and supplements are mentioned. Why do we give so much credit to the vaccine and so little credit to lifestyle prevention methods like vitamins, exercise, eating healthy?

No answers were given.

1:27:15 Work Meeting- Chair

Disagreement over whether they can have a smaller committee to work things out then present them to the board or if they need a full quorum. Scheduling details. Open to the public. No specific date or time agreed upon.

1:32:00 Secretary gave an outline of abbreviated minutes rules. If you want specifics included in the minutes, send in a written report.

“Never be bullied into silence. Never allow yourself to be made a victim. Accept no one’s definition of your life; define yourself.” - Robert Frost