Pencils Pose a Problem

            In her update to the Marion Board of Health during its February 8 public meeting, Health Agent Shallyn Rodriguez reported a troubling discovery. What Rodriguez said she “found odd” was the fact that two body-art establishments in town are reusing pencils that draw the art before microblading begins. Marion does not require disinfecting pencils.

            “I called the state and say, ‘hey, this is what I found,’ and they (said), ‘we didn’t even know about it … we didn’t know that was a (practice),’” reported Rodriguez, who received feedback that the state will discuss the matter and could potentially revise its next set of regulations to reflect the requirement that pencils used on bodies in advance of microblading are sanitized in between clients.

            Board member Dr. John Howard does not think art pencils or a pencil sharpener can be effectively sanitized. Board Chairman Dr. Ed Hoffer suggested Marion recommend disposable pencils for the work. Rodriguez said, while a microblade is not as deep as a tattoo, it does scrape the skin and does draw blood.

            Howard playfully suggested the board send Hoffer in for treatment under cover. More seriously, Howard suggested the town become a leader since the state is apparently leaving such regulations in the hands of municipalities.

            Hoffer asked that a public hearing be held as promptly as possible so that the town could push through a regulation.

            A septic update on 38 Rocky Knook Lane included information on a sale of the property, which had received an extension from the Board of Health while looking for a betterment loan.

            In the interim, the existing owner could not produce Title 5 certification but said they would pump the system on February 3, but when Health Director Lori Desmarais reached out for confirmation, the company had no record of the service.

            The town, meanwhile, had no record of the last pumping. The septic installer said the property was to be sold on February 12 with money put in escrow as part of the sale to replace the system.        Desmarais said a 2022 percolation test will require repeating without test results.

            Howard recommended a follow-up on the sale and the status of the construction.

            At 51 Bay Road, the situation is murkier, as the property was transferred from the parents to immediate family, but the new owner had not yet pumped the cesspool, which had been treated approximately three years ago.

            The town has no record or knowledge of the condition of the cesspool. Hoffer suggested the town request pumping records and, if they cannot be produced, request that the system is pumped in the next 90 days.

            Marion has conducted 20 Community EMS visits in 2024.

            Last year, Marion had 51 cases of tick-borne illness. Desmarais is working with Plymouth County tick expert Blake Dinius on scheduling an event where shoe treatment can be administered.

            Board members would like the Plymouth County Mosquito Control Project Report to include the number of respondents to the invitation to seek individual home treatment. Desmarais planned to attend the Plymouth County Mosquito Control Information Session.

            The members held a discussion on the opioid settlement and Narcan funding and would like to  have some influence in the process with town officials.

            The next meeting of the Marion Board of Health was not announced upon adjournment.

Marion Board of Health

By Mick Colageo

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