GIRARD — The Crawford County Commission discussed several areas of public health at its regular meeting Tuesday.

Restorative Justice Authority Program Director Angie Hadley presented the commission with information about the Kansas Department of Corrections Juvenile Services Grant, which funds RJA. For fiscal year 2017, RJA will receive just over $311,000 from the state — the total being a one cent increase from last year.

Hadley also informed the commission about Senate Bill 367, which goes into effect July 1. Hadley said the bill will implement more community-based programming.

County Health Officer Rebecca Adamson met with the commission to discuss the Crawford County Health Department performing an annual wellness check for county employees. The past two years, employees have paid $20 each for the wellness check, but this year the price will increase to $28.50 to include a thyroid stimulating hormone test.

The commission also decided to make the check available to spouses of employees on a voluntary basis.

County Mental Health Director Mike Ehling spoke to the commission about the Challenger and Discovery programs offered through Crawford County Mental Health. The programs are therapeutic programs implemented into local schools to work with students with behavioral or mental health problems.

Discovery is a pre-school program that was created for Phillip Norris — who as a child was removed from seven different care programs, according to Ehling.

Norris went through the Discovery program and then worked as a mentor in the Challenger program after graduating high school.

“Discovery really helped him and he came full circle to be able to give back,” Ehling said. “He was one of our best staff because he understood how the children felt and what they were going through.”

Ehling has employed about 1,500 Pittsburg State University Students — including Norris — through the Challenger program, which pairs them with younger children to mentor.

— Chance Hoener is a staff writer for the Morning Sun. He can be emailed at or follow him on Twitter @ReporterChance.