Traffic study, health insurance tops commission agenda


TORRINGTON – The Goshen County Commission heard reports from several county departments and decided on a new health insurance provider for county employees during its regular meeting Tuesday at the Goshen County Courthouse. 

The meeting opened with a report from Goshen County Road and Bridge, which was accepted 2-0. During the report, county engineer Bob Taylor reported the results of a traffic counter study in the Arrowhead Road area. According to Taylor, the study shed some light on how much traffic travels on the road. That data could prove useful in setting speed limits and in justifying road work. 

Traffic counters were placed on the north and south ends of the road leading into Arrowhead. 

“On the south counter, in weekday traffic, we had 355 cars,” Taylor said. “On the north counter, it’s only 141. A lot of that is in that south subdivision. Nonetheless, that gives us a lot of good information.”

The commission also accepted county clerk Cindy Kenyon’s report 2-0. She updated the commission on earnings from county offices and departments. 

Kenyon also presented the commission a proposal to switch the county’s employee health insurance from its current provider to Cigna Health Insurance, which she told the commission would cost the county $75,000 more up front, but would provide county employees with better options for their healthcare. 

The commission voted 2-0 to approve the switch to Cigna. 

According to commission chairman Wally Wolski, the switch is in the best interest of the employees. 

The bottom line here is that benefits-wise, it’s a better deal for the employees,” he said. “Instead of a 50-50 co-insurance, it’s 70-30. That’s a good thing for them.”

The commission also heard from Goshen County Weed and Pest Supervisor Bob Baumgartner, who requested the county’s contribution to the weed and pest operating cost be raised to its traditional contribution of $4,500, instead of reduced amounts in the last few years. 

Last year, the GCC contributed $3,375. 

“All I’m here to do is to ask for a little support from the commission,” Baumgartner said. “We’ve offered an amount. This year what I did was I asked for $4,500. That has been given in the past, but in the last few years that amount was not given.”

Baumgartner said the money from the commission could be used a variety of ways within weed and pest, from operating costs to contributing to grant match funds. 

“Basically, the money you guys have given us helps with the cash match for the emergency insect management grant, which requires a 50-50 match,” he said. “Due to cuts and restraints, we have to come up with $7,000 cash match this year, this can go towards that.”

The commission did not act on the contribution request, but Wolski said the GCC will take it into consideration. 

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