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Pay It Forward: Angela Myers

GLADSTONE, Illinois - The Henderson County Health Department is working to cut down on its debt after it had a massive amount just one year ago, partly due to the Illinois state budget crisis.

"Last year in May, things went south," Henderson County Health Department Administrator Angela Myers said.

Myers worked for the health department from 1998 to 2000 before taking a job at the Great River Medical Center in West Burlington. She then retired in 2013. Just last year though, she was asked to come back after previous administrator Lynn Haase resigned.

"I did a lot of soul searching," Myers said. "I wanted to save this health department. It's very important to the people of Henderson County."

When Myers took the job last year, she says the health department in Gladstone was $60,000 in debt. Since then, she claims the debt has dropped to $40,000 by making her employees take a pay cut and making the department close the building on Fridays at noon.

"If it wasn't for her, we wouldn't we able to continue our services," Henderson County Health Department employee Becky Fletcher said.

Myers says she's not blaming anybody for the bad financial situation, but she says the remaining staff taking a pay cut, was better for the health department as a whole, than just cutting jobs.

"We just really penny pinched and watched everything that we did and everything that we bought, and we've made it." Myers said. "Without a state budget, we were not getting much in."

We reached out to Haase over the phone, but she did not want to comment on the story.