Commissioner Todd Portune Returns To Business As Usual

May 23, 2019

Hamilton County Commission voted unanimously on an initiative impacting homelessness. Commissioner Todd Portune joined the other commissioners after being out for neck surgery.

The board voted unanimously to support Portune's resolution to fund a mobile homeless shelter that will continue to battle homelessness throughout the county.

The van will drive around and give homeless people unable to go to a shelter a place to rest with a heating and cooling system.

Money from the federal government allows Hamilton County to partner with local organizations. Maslow's Army mobile shelter is handicap accessible and funding will begin this fiscal year.

Prior to the meeting, Vice President Stephanie Summerow Dumas clarified that her concerns about relocating Thursday's meeting were about following meeting rules.

"The commission voted January 8, which was one of my first resolutions, that there would be one Thursday meeting every month," Summerow Dumas said. "We had our Thursday meeting last month. I am not going to violate this resolution or any other resolutions."

"It is the law of the land that people who have disabilities are to be reasonably accommodated with respect to their ability to do the job that is asked of them," Portune said. Summerow Dumas said she supports disabled people.

She said she has no issue having a meeting at the Daniel Drake Center next month to accommodate Portune. He said in response that he hopes to be well in the next two weeks and would like to revisit the need to have the meeting there.

Portune said he was unable to voice his concerns after his medical problems since commissioners are only able to have discussions during meetings because of the Open Meetings Act.

He said he was stunned that moving the meeting location was seen as having an ulterior motivate since the board has accommodated him in the past.

The next meeting is June 4 at 1 p.m. in the Hamilton County Administration Building and is the first meeting of the summer schedule.