Clinton County officials unanimously approved a 28E agreement for the Eastern Iowa Mental Health Region.

The Clinton County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved the amended 28E agreement, which is a formal agreement between two or more governmental agencies combining to offer services to the public. The mental health region is comprised of Clinton, Cedar, Jackson, Muscatine and Scott counties.

Region CEO Lori Elam said the region was required to pass an amended 28E agreement because of the addition of children’s behavioral health services language as required by the state Legislature. 

Elam said the regions are responsible for the care of children with a serious emotional disturbances diagnosis effective July 1. 

The agreement also outlines three additional voting members to be added to the governing board. The agreement outlines that three votes will be given to the five boards of supervisors-appointed directors. The three voting committee-appointed directors will have one vote each.

The amended agreement allows each county to appoint an alternate in addition to the director appointed to the board.

“I know this has been a long time coming,” Elam said. “I’m very happy that the governing board agreed that this was a very important piece that needed to be added.”

The 28E agreement also includes language that each county is to levy what is recommended by the governing board.

“That’s going to be really important, that we’re all communicating with one another as we develop the budgets together,” Elam said. “And then making sure we’re all levying the appropriate amount for our counties.”

Clinton County Board of Supervisors Vice Chairman Tom Determann supported the 28E agreement. He liked the addition of an alternate board member, which he said has been a big issue for Clinton County. He also supported the language for all regional counties to levy the same amount and the addition of a yearly meeting.

Board of Supervisors Chairman Dan Srp supported the establishment of subcommittees to continue to review how the region is structured.

Supervisor Jim Irwin Jr., who is the county representative on the board, believes the governing board made good progress on the amended agreement.

John Rohlf is a Clinton Herald staff writer.