Bent County Commissioners held their second monthly meeting, Wednesday, April 11, in the basement of the Historic Courthouse after an inspection of the county jail. Chuck Netherton, Democrat candidate for commissioner, and John Thomas, Republican candidate, were present in addition to the current commissioners. The Sheriff’s report listed the inmate count for March: Bent County 15, Otero County 13, Department of Corrections 3, and Crowley County 2. Inmate contracts for March totaled $25,695.

Jeremy Summers, Administrator of the Bent County Healthcare Center, and Mitch Friedman, director of Operations for Senex, the Management Company, reported the Center received a Five Star rating from the Center for Medical Services (CMS Medicare/Medicaid). Only the top 10% of nursing homes in the country receive a Five Star rating and the bottom 10% receive a one star rating. All others fall in between. 

The Bent County facility has received a four star rating since 2013. Summers, the administrator at the facility for the past  five years, stated, “When Senex took over in January, 2012, the nursing home was looking at closure due to finances. 2017 marks the fifth consecutive year we have been profitable under Senex. Now an employee satisfaction  survey is at 87% and the client family survey runs 82%.” 

The HealthCare Center recently completed a remodel of the front entrance which included a fireplace and a water feature. The Center also purchased a new transport bus and a minivan for the elders to use for outings.

The Las Animas City Council recommended the appointment of Barbara Shively, great granddaughter of A.B. Ham, to the Library Board, and the commissioners agreed.

John Thomas, board member of the Public Health organization, told the commissioners “Public Health donated $160,000 to the Community Center for completion and exercise equipment." Grand opening plans for the renovated Community Center were mentioned in addition to new signage for the building.

A new computer system for numerous county departments was discussed as the current systems are antiquated. New systems will be investigated further.

County administrator Calvin Feik presented several items to the Commissioners. Work on the former Memorial School is finished. Stage lights and covers at the Community Center have been installed.

The meeting was adjourned at 10:45 a.m.