County officials approve IT purchase of back-up equipment

REED CITY — Protecting and backing up Osceola County's vital information from the various governmental departments is a necessity.

That is why, at its final meeting of 2016 on Tuesday, the Osceola County Committee of the Whole approved technology coordinator J.T. Burgess to purchase I.T. Backup and Disaster Recovery equipment and licenses from I.T. Right for $3,660.

Burgess said the equipment would provide the company and himself an off-site location to restore items in case of hardware or technology issues.

"It's easier for them to do that, and it's completely automated," he explained to the board. "It's something so they and I can utilize the technology we have, and it's off site. If something should happen to the tax information or from another department, it can be restored with little or no down time."

Burgess said there will be yearly licenses needed for the local recovery device technology, however his budget has money for the purchase.

Officials also took time during their meeting to recognize 26 employees for hitting benchmarks in their years of service to Osceola County.

"We appreciate everything you do for our county," chair Larry Emig said. "You're the reason our county is so well-known and well liked. We hope you like your jobs that you do well and continue to do a great job."

In other action, the board voted to opt out of the Municipal Employees' Retirement System service credit purchases. The organization would offer employees the opportunity to purchase service time to for purposes of retirement.

In the past 24 years, County Clerk Karen Bluhm said there have been a small number of employees to ask about the program, but no one has purchased service credit.

"There's no up-front cost to the county as it is up to the employee to make the purchase of service time at their cost," she said. "However, it would effect the county's unfunded liability down the road."

Officials also made several appointments and reappointments to county boards, authorities and committees.

Action items considered during the Committee of the Whole were then recommended and approved during the Board of Commissioners meeting.

The next Osceola County Committee of the Whole meeting is scheduled for 9:30 a.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2017, in the second floor of the courthouse.

Future agendas and past meeting minutes are available for viewing at osceola-county.org.