Sherburne County is one of the most cost-effective counties in the state when it comes to providing health and human services. A report released by the state shows Sherburne County is fourth in per capita ranking of county health and human service departments. “Sherburne County is fourth from the bottom in what it costs per 1,000 population,” HHS Director Ken Ebel told members of the county board Tuesday. “That’s a good ranking.” Total cost per capita is $1,130, with the majority of that amount being covered by state and federal dollars. The county’s cost per capita is just $63. “Part of it is population increase. Part of it is that we try not to ask for any more staff than we have to so we don’t have excessive costs,” said Ebel. “We try to keep it within reason so we get a lot of bang for the buck.” Carver County led the state rankings at $983 per capita. Washington County was second at $1,014 per capita and Scott County was third at $1,034. Rankings for other counties in Region 7W included Wright (fifth, $1,170) Stearns (16th, $1,621) and Benton (35th, $1,950). State Health Rankings The State of Minnesota also received high marks in the 2012 National Health Rankings. Public Health Supervisor Kathy Landwehr said Minnesota finished fifth in the nation. The state was sixth a year ago. Some of the state’s strengths were a low rate of premature deaths and deaths from cardiovascular disease; low prevalence of sedentary lifestyle and diabetes and a high rate of high school graduation, where Minnesota ranked third in the nation. Some of the state’s challenges were: a high rate of binge drinking; low per capita funding for public health (48th of 50 states), and a high rate of infectious diseases. “The commissioner of health pointed out we have very good surveillance system in pertussis (whooping cough), which is one of the diseases used for the ranking,” said Landwehr. “We’re looking for it and monitoring it. We have special sites where clinics and hospitals report when they have infectious diseases. So part of that ranking is because we are doing a diligent job looking for infectious diseases.” The top 10 states on the 2012 health ranking list are: Vermont, Hawaii, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Connecticut, Utah, New Jersey, Maine and Rhode Island. Other Business In other action the board: * Accepted a donation of $200 in gift cards for needy Sherburne County veterans families from American Legion Auxiliary Post 147 in Big Lake; * Accepted a $100 donation from Granite Electrics from St. Cloud to the sheriff’s reserve unit; * Renewed the agreement with Ronald McDonald Care Mobile to provide dental services to uninsured and underinsured children and pregnant women through 2013; * Renewed a revised agreement with Rivercrest Housing in East St. Cloud to provide group housing for inebriate individuals; * Approved an agreement between the state Dept. of Human Services, the sheriff’s office and county attorney’s office to allow the county to collect revenues from the federal government for child support; * Authorized the repayment of $72,500 to the enterprise fund for money spent on e-charging software that has now been reimbursed by the state; * Approved an increase in the stipend for veterans service office drivers from $64.27 to $66.52 per day; * Approved advertising for bids for the reconstruction project of Co. Rd. 3 from Co. Rd. 20 to Co. Rd. 6; * Appointed Commissioner Bruce Anderson as representative on the CommUNITY Project Joint Powers Board and HHS Director Ken Ebel as alternate; * Elected Commissioner Ewald Petersen as a member of the State Community Health Services Advisory Committee and Commissioner Rachel Leonard as alternate; * Approved the final payment of $8,114.48 to RL Larson Excavating for culvert replacement on Co. Rd. 3 and Co. Rd. 7; * Approved the final payment of $1,049.32 to AAA Striping Service Co. for installing 6” edgeline and rumble strip on various county roads; * Approved the final payment of $4,891.75 to Safety Signs for chevron and STOP sign improvements on various county roads; * Approved the final payment of $182,487.01 to Hardrives for the Co. Rd. 16 reconstruction project; * Proclaimed January, 2013 as Child Mentoring Month in Sherburne County.