2018-02-07 / Local News

EMA Director resigns

Confusion abounds about status of Advisory Council
By Debbie Lowe
Staff writer

Carroll County Commissioners received a letter of resignation from the County’s Emergency Management Agency (EMA) Director Dana Jeffries Jan. 26. The letter indicated Jeffries’ last day will be Feb. 23, however he will no longer be on the job after Tuesday, Feb. 6. He will be using paid leave and benefits from Feb. 7 to the end of the month. Commissioners Steve Pearson, Bill Brown and John Brown voted to accept the resignation at their Monday morning meeting.

Delphi Mayor Shane Evans decided to call a meeting of the Emergency Management Advisory Council (EMAC) for Tuesday, Feb. 6, at the City Building, unbeknownst to the county’s governing body. Although Evans told the Comet he attended an EMAC meeting in 2016, he also stated he researched articles in the Comet to discover who was serving on the advisory group and the last he could find was in 2013.

Jeffries stated the EMAC met last June. He said the statutory members include the mayor, the president of the Commissioners and the president of the County Council. However, Council President Ann Brown advised there are five statutory members. She also said she thought the EMAC should meet in the courthouse given EMA is a county department and is financially supported with taxpayers’ county general funds.

Commissioners’ Attorney Ted Johnson said the county executive is the entity responsible for maintaining an EMAC. Ann Brown said in almost every county, the president of the County Commissioners is also the president of the EMAC and convenes the meetings, along with the EMA director.

It was decided Commissioners will post the job immediately. State law indicates the EMAC reviews the applications, interviews prospective directors and makes a hire recommendation to the County Commissioners, who make the ultimate decision of whom to hire. A job description will be posted as well.

The current job description was written in 2009 and revised in July 2013. Jeffries was hired in early 2013 after Commissioners dismissed former director Dave McDowell. The job description indicates the director is “responsible for overseeing department operations and developing, administering and maintaining emergency response procedures for the duration and aftermath of disasters.” The director is to “define emergency response procedures, equipment use and allocation, shelter and healthcare facilities, notification procedures for emergency personnel and the public and emergency relocation data.”

The re-organization meeting of the Carroll County EMAC will be Feb. 14 at 9 a.m. in Room 209 in the courthouse. The public is invited to attend.

Return to top