May 21, 2024

Keeping Media and Government Accountable.

Health and Safety Advisory Council (HSAC) is a very bad idea

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The left-leaning Johnson County Commission is entertaining an amendment to the County Charter to form a left-leaning Health and Safety Advisory Council (HSAC) so that commissioners have more political cover to enact their mandates and restrictions.  The proposal comes from the left-stacked Johnson County Charter Commission and it is a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad idea.

Commission Chair Ed Eilert and four other commissioners who comprise the 5-2 liberal majority have a long track record of pushing the interests of government to the detriment of citizens.  They are using tax dollars to promote the false notion of white supremacy.  They collude with school superintendents on mask mandates.  They consciously are breaking property tax laws and they arguably violated the County Charter by hiring an unqualified county auditor.  And at least one of them – Janae Hanzlick – tried to have the Sheriff appointed instead of being elected.

Now they want to appoint a Health and Safety Advisory Council so they shift some blame for their actions.

Here is the language of the proposed amendment.

“The Board of County Commissioners shall form a standing Health and Safety Advisory Council (HSAC) that will provide guidance when the BOCC acts as the Board of Health or exercises other emergency powers related to issues of public health and safety. The HSAC shall be composed of representatives from accredited health professions, colleges & universities, K-12 school districts, local Federally Qualified Health Center, businesses, as well as professional health interest groups as determined by the BOCC, including but not limited to, physicians, patients, caregivers, pharmacies, hospitals, schools, non-profit and religious organizations, first responders, and the general public.

“The Directors of the Health & Environment Department and Emergency Management Department shall serve as ex-officio members of the HSAC. Each District Commissioner of the BOCC and the County Sheriff shall appoint one member to the HSAC. The Chair of the County Commission shall appoint two members to the HSAC. The HSAC may be expanded to include other disciplines as the BOCC deems appropriate. Members of the HSAC shall serve three-year terms and are not subject to term limits.”

Chairman Eilert and company are not just stacking the deck; they would be able to get themselves appointed to the HSAC for what could be life terms once they leave office.

The County already employs health officials who advise commissioners and they have ready access to other experts in the community.  Having a formally appointed committee is just designed to make it easier for elected officials to offload responsibility.

The second reading of the proposed charter amendment is on Wednesday, December 22 at 4:00 pm in the Administration Building at 111 S. Cherry Street in Olathe.

A huge public turnout derailed the attempt to have an appointed Sheriff.  The same should happen with this bad policy.

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