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Coronavirus

Cole County leaders working to increase coronavirus vaccinations

Cole County courthouse in Jefferson City
Cole County courthouse in Jefferson City

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (KMIZ)

Cole County's Presiding Commissioner says he and other county leaders are working to increase coronavirus vaccinations across the county.

"COVID-19 is still our main concern right now. The vaccine is sort of our light at the end of the tunnel -- but we need to get more vaccine and vaccinate more people," Presiding Commissioner Sam Bushman said Tuesday after the commission meeting.

The county commission met with multiple county department directors Tuesday morning discussing CARES Act funding requests.

Bushman said he's focused on making vaccines available to all county residents.

"We're looking to play an even bigger part in vaccinating the community," Bushman said. "Our (health care) workers are already in high demand."

Tuesday morning, the commissioners approved an emergency purchase of up to $6,000 for Cole County EMS to buy a refrigerator. Bushman said it will be used to store coronavirus vaccine and will have an alarm to alert staff if the inside temperature gets too warm.

The commission discussed a purchase for an ultra-cold freeze with the Cole County Health Department Director Kristi Campbell. Bushman said no money was earmarked during the meeting.

Campbell said additional hours for the health department's nurse practitioner to facilitate coronavirus vaccinations and a purchase for vaccine clinic scheduling software was discussed as well. The funding would come from the CARES Act.

Several CARES Act funding requests were approved for the Cole County Circuit Court. Bushman said $6,500 was approved for new court marshal radios, $1,000 was approved for a new air filter and the court was greenlighted to hire a part-time court marshal at $20 an hour.

The commission also discussed with Circuit Judge Jon Beetem approving a purchase for an outside shelter. Bushman said it would be used for people waiting outside the court for trials and court hearings. He said more information about the structure will be discussed during Thursday's commission meeting.

In 2020, the commission approved millions in CARES Act funding requests for schools, PPE and various county departments.

Cole / Jefferson City / News / Top Stories

Matt Ragsdale

Matt Ragsdale is a broadcast and digital producer at ABC 17 News.

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