WENATCHEE — The Chelan-Douglas Health District is now accepting applications to join the board of health, the first step toward complying with new legislation meant to make the board more diverse.

The board is looking for at least six new non-elected members to join the board, but the total number has not been finalized.

Currently, the board is made up of six board members, all of them elected officials: four county commissioners, two city mayors and two city councilmembers.

The Chelan-Douglas Board of Health's main responsibility is to ensure the health and safety of both Chelan and Douglas counties. They oversee the work of the health district which also issues a variety of health permits for restaurants and other businesses. 

The new non-elected board members need to belong to one of these categories:

  • Health care providers, including practicing doctors, dentists, nurses and epidemiologists.
  • Consumers of public health who have faced significant health inequities. This category cannot include elected officials or those who have a financial interest in any health agency.
  • Community stakeholders like community nonprofits working with underrepresented communities and the business community.

Decisions related to permits, licensing and application fees are still only handled by the city and county elected officials on the board.

Prospective board members can find an application at wwrld.us/application. People also can request an application be mailed to them by calling the health district at (509) 886-6400 and asking for the human resources department.

Applications are due by Jan. 10, and the appointments will be made sometime in the first quarter of 2022, according to a Chelan County news release.

The selection process has not been finalized and will be determined at an upcoming meeting. The board next meets on Dec. 20. Some of the possibilities include having a subcommittee review applications first and also conducting interviews. 

The state law, however, requires that the county commissioners on the board make the final decision on who to add to the board.

Find information on the application process at wwrld.us/boardofhealth.

The new board must be in place by July 1, 2022. 

Oscar Rodriguez: (509) 665-1179

rodriguez@wenatcheeworld.com

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