The physician says he will resign as Girard's health commissioner.
By STEPHEN SIFF
VINDICATOR TRUMBULL STAFF
BROOKFIELD -- The Trumbull County Board of Health unanimously voted Wednesday to offer James Enyeart, Girard health commissioner and a physician, the job of Trumbull County health commissioner.
Enyeart, 50, has served as interim county health commissioner since the resignation of Vincent Catuogno on Aug. 14.
"This is a big challenge," said Enyeart, who intends to resign his post in Girard. "We want to protect the environment; we want to work with the county to help guide the plans for development in the future."
Providing he accepts the contract offered by the board, Enyeart will take the helm Monday of a 30-person department faced with a number of challenges.
The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency has identified more than 30 areas in Trumbull County where it would like to see problems from failing residential septic systems fixed.
In April, county commissioners and the county sanitary engineer demanded that the health department set up a program to monitor older septic systems.
On top of that, the health department still works out of a county building partially sealed because of toxic mold, and is led by a frequently contentious board.
"We need someone who will be a leader in the health department," said Scott Thompson, board member.
The previous commissioner had a stormy relationship with the board. Catuogno was fired in 1999, then given his job back under threat of a lawsuit.
As well as serving as head of the five-person Girard Health Department for 17 years, Enyeart is medical director of Glenview Manor Extended Care Facility in Mineral Ridge.
He is an associate professor at Northeast Ohio Universities College of Medicine and was chairman of the department of family medicine at St. Elizabeth Health Center in Youngstown from 1989 to 1998.
The three-year contract offered Enyeart calls for a salary of $50,000 for working 24-hour weeks, said Jason Earnhart, an assistant county prosecutor who represents the board. Enyeart will not get sick or vacation pay and has not asked for medical benefits, Earnhart said.
Catuogno earned $42,000 a year for part-time work. He was paid $32,000 for accumulated sick and vacation time when he resigned.