As part of the team of the Marion County Board of Developmental Disabilities, it is critical that you feel you have the information you need to communicate to your friends, family, and the community at large.
There have been so many changes; it may be hard to feel equipped with the right information so I wanted to give you an update on our facility changes as well as discussions we have had to further our operational efficiencies.
As you are aware, we are “trading places” with Marca Industries. They have purchased the Beidler Building that currently houses our Service and Support Administration staff. Federal law mandates that we cannot be under roof with one of our providers (which is why we had to move to the administrative office to begin with) so this move has been discussed and synchronized with great care and detail. The move is scheduled to be complete by early 2020. Marca will be doing some renovations to the Beidler while our SSAs are still under roof. We apologize for the noise and inconvenience this may cause.
We are exploring potential sales or demolition of additional buildings and land to save on the maintenance, upkeep, and general operational costs. Once we vacate the administration offices, we know this will be a desirable space for those businesses looking to lease in our area, which will provide long-term revenue opportunities.
Our move to the Industry Building will provide efficiency of our now small staff to be in one location for meetings, general business, and daily operations. We are excited for this opportunity, as this has never been the case. I’m excited for the synergy and daily brainstorming this will bring. We will be using the money from the sale of the Beidler Building as well as our capital levy funds for these improvements.
In all, with these changes and the reduction of staff, this is a savings of over 14 million dollars to taxpayers in our ten-year budget.
My hope is that it also allows us to provide better support and services to those we serve.
I know that we have all been through a lot. Losing staff, major transformation of the SSA department, and so many failed levy attempts. It all weighs heavy on me. I know you feel the weight too. I feel that we have put the worst behind.
The plans that are in motion as well as some of the future plans playing out as we hope will position us for a very fiscally healthy future (levy passage included in this outlook).
I’m excited for all of us to take pride in where we are now and focus solely on those served and bettering their lives with independence and inclusion in Marion County. Thanks for being a part of our team and sticking it out!
Cheryl A. Plaster, Superintendent