The Yuma County Board of Supervisors will consider on Monday whether to compensate employees who are exposed to COVID-19 as part of their duties with additional hazard pay using AZCARES relief funds.

In a staff report, Sheriff Leon Wilmot explained that if the supervisors want to consider hazard pay for health and public safety workers who are unavoidably exposed to COVID-19 by the nature of their duties, he recommends that it be in the form of a limited amount of pay for a limited period of time.

“This is prudent in light of the continuing unknown cost and revenue impacts of COVID-19 on Yuma County,” the report states.

The board will also mull using excess AZCARES funds to help small businesses and individuals in the unincorporated county areas.

In addition, the board will discuss a possible minor amendment to the Yuma County 2020 Comprehensive Plan that would prohibit accessory dwelling units from being constructed in noise zones.

However, the meeting will start out as an awards ceremony, but without the usual pomp and circumstance. The supervisors will recognize the nominees for 2019’s Employee of the Year, Court Employee of the Year and Safety Excellence Award. After accepting the Merit Award System Board’s recommendations, the winners will be announced.

The annual recognition of employees regularly scheduled for mid-April was postponed this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. With no end in sight to the pandemic, county officials decided to move forward with these recognitions in a modified way, rather than keep waiting longer.

Then it will be back to business as usual. As part of the consent calendar, the supervisors will consider a school superintendent request for approval of a property tax rate that would result in a levy that makes up for deficits resulting from lawsuits filed by solar companies against the Arizona Department of Revenue. Following the litigation, several local school districts had to refund tax revenues, resulting in a total deficit of $563,468. The school districts involved in the judgments include Crane, Gadsden, Somerton, Yuma Elementary and Yuma Union High and Southwest Technical Education District.

Also on the consent calendar is a proposed amendment of an agreement with the Arizona Department of Economic Security that would add a manner of financing for the disbursement of funds pertaining to the Administration of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity of 2014 in Yuma County, which is funded by an Arizona Social Services Block Grant as well as an agreement with Yuma Regional Medical Center for medical examiner services.

The board will meet at 9 a.m. at 198 S. Main St. Anyone who is concerned about COVID-19 and does not want to attend the meeting in person can still participate by submitting an email with the subject line “Call to the Public” and a statement to: publiccomment@yumacountyaz.gov.

These email forms will be accepted until 8 a.m. the morning of the meeting. All public comments will be read aloud during the meeting.

To view the complete agenda and staff reports, go to https://tinyurl.com/y5n98gro.

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