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BPW considers wellness program for employees Print E-mail

In an effort to identify and correct potential health problems among its employees, Bamberg Board of Public Works (BPW) commissioners agreed to start the process of looking into the cost of implementing a wellness and health screening program for its 20 employees.

Commissioner Buddy Sandifer, in proposing the health screening program, said he had spoken with BPW Manager Bruce Ellis prior to the meeting. Sandifer stated there were “things” the BPW needed to offer its employees at its own expense, that would “probably save us money in the long-term” and one thing was health screenings. He said the board could set aside some money in its budget to get the program started.

“We don’t know what kind of shape each employee is in, if something is wrong, we can catch it and have it fixed on an annual basis,” Sandifer said.

BPW Manager Bruce Ellis said after he and commissioner Sandifer spoke, he started looking into whether employees would be interested in the possibility of a wellness program. Ellis cited other utility companies in the area have exercise programs for employees and indicated that the company’s insurance might pay for part of the cost.

“The insurance could pay part of that, after we talked, we’re looking at what they will pay or won’t, we can add the rest,” Ellis said.

BPW commissioner Dr. F. Marion Dwight stated that health screenings could be a good thing for the employees. “Annual screenings of people’s health could be good. It could encourage people to stop smoking and eat better," Dwight said.

In other business:

BPW commissioners approved the request from the Bamberg County Soccer League sponsored by the First Baptist Church of Bamberg to use the BPW property on Midway Street for soccer games and practice.

Manager Bruce Ellis reported that the BPW “had a pretty good winter” this year compared to last year’s relatively mild winter. “We had some pretty long, cold days; we sold some utilities this year, that we didn’t sell last year, which we must do to operate a utility company,” Ellis said.

Ellis said that the company needed to look into doing some work on the warehouse facility that was started 15 years ago. He said BPW was flushing some hydrants, turning valves, (required by law) and putting some taps in. “Other than that, there was not a lot going on,” Ellis informed board members.

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