EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

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September 1, 2013

Councilor stands behind health director cut

Fountain questions whether grant was run properly

(Continued)

Buckley said regional public health nurse Elizabeth Malone was to be laid off last week. Hired in August 2012, Malone works out of Holy Family Hospital in Methuen and supports existing local health staffs with various clinics and anti-obesity initiatives. Malone is paid $50,000 a year and works 35 hours per week.

As grant administrator, LaGrasse served as the direct supervisor for both Decie and Malone.

According to a January 2012 press release announcing the grant, the nurse and inspector were hired to help local health departments address communicable disease control, chronic disease reduction and environmental health protection.

Members of the regional health district were expected to work with local hospitals and health centers to prioritize public health needs by developing a “community health assessment,” according to the release.

The grant was originally slated to run until December 2015. To date, Buckley said the district has received $111,000 and spent $46,000.

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