Moraine Township

Moraine Township Board of Trustees
Thursday, September 24, 2009 7:30 PM
Moraine Township Office

September 24, 2009

The meeting was called to order at 7:35 PM by Supervisor Barnes and upon roll call the following members were present: Trustees Bryna Gamson, Margoth Moreno, and Jackie Schechter. Trustee Dwayne Douglas was absent. Also Present: Assessor Peter Koukos, Clerk Ellen Gussin, and John L. Joanem, Moraine Township Attorney.

Approval of Minutes
The Regular Meeting Minutes of September 10 are corrected to reflect that Trustee Moreno suggested under New Business that the Township give gift certificates for clothing to those in need while the Township’s Clothes Closet is closed due to the office construction; a second correction to those minutes added the name of Paul Martinez as the elected Chair of the Latino Advisory Committee.

The Executive Minutes of July 23, 2009 stand approved as written.

Approval of Bills
Trustee Gamson moved, seconded by Trustee Schechter, approval of the bills. Upon roll call, motion carried.

Public Comment

Agency Presentations
Josselyn Center – Gary Smith, President. Gary thanked the Board and the Citizen Grant Advisory Committee for its funding. Josselyn is 60 years old after being founded in the basement of the Highland Park hospital by Dr. Irene Josselyn. The clinic operates no beds, and follows a multi-disciplinary approach to treat clients as out patients offering therapy and psychiatric care for children, adolescents, and adults. They served over 1,000 unduplicated clients and had 24,000 visits in the past year. About 14% of the clients and 20% of the visits were Moraine Township residents. Three goals include providing outpatient services; acting as source of information and advocacy; and cooperative participation with many other not-for-profit agencies. 97% of clients take advantage of the sliding scale fees; 77 % are below poverty level. More adults (77 %) than children and adolescents (20%) show improvement; 99% recommend the services. The new therapeutic summer day camp program for ages 8 to 12 was very successful (15 kids attended who had never been at camp before.) Foundations for Wellness – a customized program to address a variety of issues – was very well received with cyberspace bowling an example of one of the most popular offerings. They also opened a drop-in center in Deerfield this year for adults with mental illness, and were very surprised to learn that no other such-facility exists on the North Shore – for many, this provides the only socialization opportunity in their lives. Trustee Gamson questioned the relationship between Josselyn and the Townships, asking if there is more we can do to work with the Center. In response, Gary said they get referrals all the time from the townships but that they might be able to assist with communications to the constituents of the various communities regarding availability of services at agencies such as Josselyn. There is a Speakers Bureau, and perhaps Moraine Township could help by suggesting speakers, as appropriate, at various community events and functions. Discussion ensued about coordinating efforts with the local Lake County Health Clinic. Gary reported that Josselyn brings in interpreters when needed and have not been able to find Spanish-speaking therapists; they could also use bi-lingual case managers. Trustee Schechter asked about walk-ins; there are walk-ins, and emergency cases are always handled promptly, usually the same day.

– Alan Spector, President and CEO. Alan is celebrating his 35th anniversary with Glenkirk; since 1954 they have been providing the highest quality programs and services to individuals with developmental disabilities. There is a waiting list for programs. Moraine Township residents comprise 15.6% of the Glenkirk population served. They have been very successful in building a network of coordinated services. Several Glenkirk-run apartments and townhouses exist in the immediate area of the Township Office. There have been marital unions among clients; one recently where the two individuals’ deficits were really complementary to each other, according to Alan. List of programs and services were passed out to the Board. Glenkirk has some individuals where their needs are so profound that they need a 1 to 1 staff ratio. Services include babies in the Infant Program, Children’s programs, and adults through end of life. Challenge facing this area is the aging of the Glenkirk population as well as those that are not served; many families have aging care givers. Glenkirk tries to emphasize prevention programs – infant car seats first became mandatory by law after Glenkirk introduced the concept as a way to prevent disability instead of just auto accidents. They have received numerous national and international awards for their services, including Next Generation and Togetherness; both are funded in part by the Township. In the past Glenkirk has adopted both the Alzheimer’s Day Care program from the Highland Park Hospital as well as the Opportunity Inc. program when both former operators could no longer continue the services. Alan Spector will be retiring at the end of this month; he has been developing an exit strategy for a long time to address the concern of fragmented services. On October 1 he will begin The Keystone Alliance, a Foundation for Caring; it will be a 501(c)(3) entity with many affiliates joining together with Glenkirk to share resources such as clerical, computer, accounting, human resources, etc. in an effort to control costs. Keystone will reach a much broader area than the Glenkirk geographic spread, and they will focus on systemic issues impacting public policy.

Epilepsy Services for Northeastern Illinois (ESNI) – Maureen Galassie, Executive Director. ESNI has been in Highland Park since 1984 and is delighted to speak to the Township for the first time. ESNI serves patients suffering from epilepsy, a neurological misfiring of the brain. There is a 50% rate of depression with epilepsy patients; many are not properly medicated due to inadequate insurance. ESNI works with the hospitals, and do not dispense any drugs on its own. Two psycho-therapists on staff. Patients receive one-on-one training and are evaluated quarterly by the staff. Outside consultants are also used. They do not treat children. Much of the work is in breaking the societal stigma and how to keep the family dynamics as cohesive as possible. Epilepsy affects about 1% of the population in this area. There are three Highland Park residents in one group of 12; for most this may be the only socialization opportunity in their daily lives; many are homebound by choice. ESNI has taken a bit of a hit in funding because of the State’s reductions. Supervisor Barnes asked about synergy with the local Lake County Health Clinic, and Maureen responded that they have received one referral from them; at times immigration status can be an impediment to patients seeking help, as ESNI is obligated to register all patients with the State. Current goal is to insure that all patients are monitored monthly by a neurologist. They have a new website this year. Maureen expressed much gratitude to the Township for the faith demonstrated in ESNI via Township funding.

Assessor’s Report
Assessor Koukos was not at the meeting. Supervisor Barnes advised the Board that contrary to Assessor Koukos’s prediction at our last meeting that the number of appeals would most likely be down this year due to the lighter public traffic in the office, that in fact appeals are up because so many people were able to access the comparables on the County’s new website, which is facilitating much of the work in the filing of an appeal.

Supervisor’s Report
Supervisor Barnes gave an update on the construction; she has suggested that the architect and contractor go out for a second bid in cases of any cost overruns in an effort to control project costs. A few surprises have arisen such as the electric panel which the City inspectors want changed to meet current code requirements.

A notice about PADS re-opening for their shelter season in October was passed around with more information about that agency’s services.

North Shore Estates – The CareCoach is serving more adults now since the local Lake County Health Clinic has been able to keep the children up to date with vaccinations.

There is now an application for Volunteer Service to Moraine Township, available in the Township office or website.

2010 Calendar Approval
Meeting Schedule for the 2010 calendar year was distributed to the Board in advance of this meeting by the Clerk. Trustee Gamson moved, seconded by Trustee Schechter, that the Meeting Schedule be adopted, and motion carried.

Committee Reports
Food Pantry – Open for business during the construction period; placed a food order with Sunset Foods and will be placing another order with the Northern Illinois Food Bank.

Clothes Closet – The ORT resale shop across the street from the Township is happy to take the gift vouchers discussed at last month’s meeting. The vouchers will be distributed to families as needed, probably up to $20 a person. There will be flexibility, depending upon the family’s circumstances and the ORT shop will work with them also.

– The County Committee (LCCTSC) that Trustee Gamson attends monthly is progressing with its Northwest Demonstration Program with the County as the fiscal agent; New Freedom is the funding source. Township to submit another grant request to the Healthcare Foundation of Highland Park for funding of the Township’s transportation program.

Old Business
Trustee Moreno asked about the construction and how long it will take. Supervisor Barnes responded that it will most like be another four to five weeks.

New Business
Luggage for Freedom packing day is October 25 at West Ridge Center in Highland Park; the program serves victims of domestic violence and their families. Volunteers are sought for the packing day and Clerk Gussin gave Supervisor Barnes a flyer to post.

With no further business to conduct, Trustee Schechter moved, seconded by Trustee Gamson, the meeting be adjourned at 8:55 PM. Motion carried.

Respectfully submitted,

Ellen S. Gussin
Moraine Township Clerk


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