STEUBENVILLE - The Jefferson County Community Action Council board of trustees welcomed a new member and heard a series of reports during the regular monthly meeting.
The Rev. Ashley Steele, executive director of Urban Mission Ministries, officially joined the board Wednesday afternoon.
Steele and her new colleagues heard a mix of good news and bad news from Barb West, chief executive officer of the CAC, including an update on the AEP Ohio Community Assistance Program agreement.
"Under this agreement between AEP Ohio and the Corporation for Ohio Appalachian Development, the parties to this agreement will continue a continuous and best practices review process during weatherization audits for eligible clients," West said.
"Refrigerators and freezers of eligible customers of the CAC that are metered and consume less than 3 kilowatts but are in visibly poor condition, leaking or unable to keep food cold or frozen may be replaced at the direction of the community agency. Sump pumps and well pumps may be repaired or replaced for eligible residences. And electric water heaters with tanks that are visibly leaking may be replaced for eligible customers," explained West.
West also reported the CAC has hired 75 people for the summer youth employment and training program.
"The youth workers started Monday and will be able to work a maximum of three months. They are paid $7.70 an hour and can work up to 37.5 hours a week. We have 43 different work sites in the county this summer," said West.
The board approved a new insurance plan for CAC workers that will see employees face a 23.9 percent increase for their current Anthem Blue Cross/Blue Shield coverage.
"I wish I had a better answer for you, but unfortunately that is the best we were able to receive," West stated.
In other business Wednesday, the trustees approved agreements with the Jefferson County Department of Job and Family Services for adult and dislocated workers and youth workers.
The adult and dislocated worker program will continue until June 30, 2013, at $487,654, while the youth program also is set to run until June 30, 2013, with funding at $193,538.
The Home Energy Assistance Program grant agreement for $505,000 was approved by the board and will allow the CAC to assist eligible applicants with electric bills or to purchase air conditioner units.
And the CAC trustees approved a new service agreement with the county's Job and Family Services Department for $345,289 to continue training for Severstal employees laid off in the past.
West also reported the CAC spring job fair saw 581 people and 78 businesses participate in the daylong event at the Fort Steuben Mall.