Clallam County resumes in-person meetings

Commissioners also OK homelessness study

PORT ANGELES — Clallam County commissioners are returning to in-person public meetings.

They also have contracted with a Maryland firm to conduct a homeless gaps and needs analysis that will help shape local policy.

Board Chairman Mark Ozias announced Tuesday that in-person attendance would be permitted at county meetings because it had moved into Phase 2 of the state’s Roadmap to Recovery for COVID-19.

Government meetings have been held virtually since last March, when the coronavirus pandemic began.

“There will still be restrictions,” Ozias said of in-person attendance.

“Of course, you’ll need to be masked and distanced. We will have a sign-up sheet at the door in case there is the need to do any contact tracing at some point down the road.”

Clerk of the Board Loni Gores confirmed after the meeting that in-person attendance was reinstated Tuesday.

“We’re happy about this step, and welcome the public once again to finally be able to attend our public meetings in person,” Ozias said.

“I know that that’s going to be a welcome relief for many of us.”

Homelessness study

The three commissioners voted Tuesday to approve a $61,822 personal services agreement with Cloudburst Consulting Group, Inc. for the five-month study.

The Landover, Md.-based consultant will examine issues that contribute to homelessness in Clallam County, prepare a housing inventory and submit recommendations in a final report by the end of May, according to the scope of work.

Public presentations will be made in county Board of Health and Homelessness Task Force meetings in June.

“This is a great thing,” Commissioner Randy Johnson said before the unanimous vote Tuesday. “We’ve needed it.”

The gaps analysis will examine issues such as domestic violence, education, health care, housing availability, mental health, poverty, substance-use disorders, transportation, workforce training, jobs and wages and COVID-19.

It will examine sub-populations of people experiencing homelessness and racial demographics in each subcategory, according to the agreement.

Cloudburst will provide monthly status reports to Clallam County’s Health and Human Services department.

“They are a very robust group that has worked with HUD (U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development) and had a lot of very strong connections in the homeless community,” said Jenny Oppelt, Clallam County behavioral health program coordinator, in a commissioners’ work session Tuesday.

“That drew us to them.”

Oppelt said a group of stakeholders from the Homelessness Task Force would work with the consultant to develop research questions and to help the firm “better understand what the layout looks like now in our county.”

________

Reporter Rob Ollikainen can be reached at [email protected].

More in News

Peninsula COVID-19 cases, infection rates reported

Sunday’s toll: 12 more in Clallam, none in Jefferson

Author Roshani Chokshi will speak on Wednesday.
NOLS hosting author talk online Wednesday

The North Olympic Library System will host a conversation… Continue reading

Drive-by chicken fundraiser

Orders must be received by Saturday, March 6 for the… Continue reading

No weekly flight operations scheduled

There will be no field carrier landing practice operations for… Continue reading

Book discussion groups available online

The North Olympic Library System will continue online book… Continue reading

Flags across the country were at half mast the past few days as the United States passed the dubious mark of half a million Americans having died of COVID-19. The flags at the Clallam County Courthouse were no exception as they fluttered in strong winds Tuesday at half staff. dlogan
Flags mark solemn remembrance

Flags across the country were at half staff part of this week… Continue reading

Sequim seeks input on redesign of downtown corner

Artists, surveys to help with public engagement

Sequim man dies after house fire

A Sequim man badly burned in a house fire Tuesday… Continue reading

Most Read