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Revisions to health department interlocal agreement proposed

Daily Inter Lake | September 27, 2021 12:00 AM

The interlocal agreement that buttresses the Flathead City-County Health Department will be put under the microscope for the first time since 2004 at a Kalispell City Council work session Monday.

Kalispell and Flathead County entered into an interlocal agreement to operate the joint City-County Health Department in 1976. That agreement was last updated in 2004.

Representatives from both parties will go over potential updates to the 2004 agreement.

“The purpose of this agreement is to maintain one organization that has county-wide jurisdiction in matters of health,” the new document states.

Under the revised agreement, the cities of Whitefish and Columbia Falls would be formally included in the interlocal agreement. As official entities in the agreement, Whitefish and Columbia Falls would have the opportunity to appoint Board of Health members to represent their respective municipalities in the county-wide organization.

The interlocal board would consist of nine members: one county commissioner, one member appointed by each of the three incorporated cities, and five members appointed by the Flathead County commissioners. The current members of the City-County Health Board, which includes Kalispell council member Kyle Waterman, would serve out their terms.

The new agreement identifies Flathead County as the governing body of the interlocal authority.

Most of the other details of the agreement would remain unchanged from the original 2004 version.

The funding for the City-County Health Department would continue in a manner “similar to its current methodology,” according to the meeting agenda. The expense would be levied by Flathead County on a county-wide basis.

At Monday’s meeting, officials from the city of Kalispell and Flathead County will discuss the proposed changes to the agreement. The council does not make any formal decisions during work sessions.

A date for the potential adoption of the new agreement has not yet been determined.

The 2004 agreement and a draft of the new proposed agreement are attached to the meeting agenda online, at

Reporter Bret Anne Serbin may be reached at 406-758-4459 or

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