SCIOTO — The Scioto County Commissioners addressed 25 items on its Thursday agenda pertaining to such discussions surrounding the Earl Thomas Conley Park pump-track, CARES Act funds, the obsolete Sheriff’s Office vehicles, and more.
With encouragement from the Scioto County Emergency Management Agency and the Sheriff’s Office, a proposal from On-Solve for a $10,500 mass notification system was introduced.
“This could really become something awesome if the public chooses to utilize it,” said Commissioner Bryan Davis, saying a system of this sort was long overdue in the county.
After providing an email, cell or landline number to EMA, residents would receive messages regarding potential dangers such as snow emergencies, tornadoes and water outages.
Work on the ETC pump track, a biking path of banked turns with sudden rises and falls, will be delayed after the commissioners had to first reject before reauthorizing the clerk to advertise for bids on the project. Davis said the action had to be made because of several omissions and needed additions in their past bid announcement.
“We feel better if we just go ahead and re-bid it,” he said, the track joining the park’s other amenities such as a walking trail, playground, and multiple playing fields and courts. “Unfortunately, it will back us up a few weeks, but we’d rather do it right than to rush in and do it wrong.”
The commissioners also reached a memorandum of understanding with Gahm’s Car and Truck Parts related to discussions of the Sheriff’s vehicles at the Belford residence. Nearly all of the vehicles, said earlier to be 74 in total, will go toward the Lucasville business before July 15 but four vehicles will remain at the residence.
One cruiser belonged to now deceased former deputy Jess Belford, while three buses- two Ford’s and one Chevy- were never mentioned on past inventories. To keep those vehicles, the family purchased them for $700, using a portion of the $2,000 from the commissioners to re-seed the property once the vehicles were taken away.
“All told, we will end up paying them $1,300 to get their property back in correct order,” said Davis, thanking Commissioner Scottie Powell for coming up with the idea during earlier negotiations.
The agreement between the commissioners and Gahm’s will provide an inventory of the removed vehicles- listing the vehicle identification number, make and model, and a photograph- for the sum of $250 vehicle per vehicle removed.
The value of these vehicles was a contested matter between the commissioners and former Sheriff Marty Donini dating back to 2019. As Commissioner Cathy Coleman said, $18,500 will be the total sum of the vehicles which will go back to the county’s general fund.
Now working with Sheriff David Thoroughman, Davis said the process of fixing the situation went smoothly and would have been resolved even faster if it were not for illnesses.
“We’re getting it cleaned up,” he said, more money a possibility if it had been done before some vehicles were stripped for parts. “The inventory will be clean, the audit will be much more clean.”
Available CARES Act funds remain from projects such as the the touchless faucets and HVAC systems at county-owned buildings. Those funds will go toward covering Scioto County Health Department salaries, the department waiting on a generator to move into its new home at the courthouse annex.
Even with Gov. Mike DeWine’s announcement that COVID-19 public health orders will expire June 2, the commissioners said the need for this upgrade is still needed.
“The space has been inadequate for years,” said Davis, often pushing SCHD workers out into the hallways. “When the CARES Act money became available, it became obvious that if we’re going to invest then we need to invest in our health department.”
Reach Patrick Keck (740)-353-3101 ext. 1931, by email at [email protected], or on Twitter @pkeckreporter.
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