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Published: Friday, 6/22/2007

Hancock Co. disabilities board hires new director

FINDLAY The troubled Hancock County Board of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities last night hired a former state disabilities official as its interim superintendent and agreed not to appeal the state s denial of accreditation.

The board hired Connie Ament, a former deputy director and assistant director of the state agency. She also was a superintendent of the Richland County disabilities agency in central Ohio for 12 years.

She is to start today and continue through December, board President Bill Heidlebaugh said.

She is to be paid $7,000 a month for the first three months and $6,000 a month for the following months, with no other benefits, he said.

The board interviewed three applicants for the position, Mr. Heidlebaugh said.

The vote was 4-0, with Larry Grove and Phil Haggard absent. One seat on the board is unfilled.

Also last night the board voted 4-0 to formally accept the state board s denial of accreditation and agreed not to appeal.

Last week, the Ohio Department of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities denied accreditation to the county board, saying it failed to meet state standards intended to protect the health and safety of its clients.

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