Tuesday, January 18, 2022 10:16 PM
Kosciusko County Administrator Marsha McSherry told commissioners Tuesday morning that the county is considering a complete replacement of the justice building’s fire alarm system.
“I have two requests for you this morning. I would like to seek approval from the commissioners to issue two calls for tenders (requests for proposals),” she said. “One concerns the replacement of the fire alarm system in the Justice Building. It would be a complete replacement and I have an RFP. This would follow our sourcing policy.
His second request was for Northern Industrial Flooring.
“We don’t approve of that. We are just looking for quotes on this. But that would be for the prison, the showers and the floors – the walls and the floors of the prison showers. What he would do is put a layer on it to seal the cement blocks. And the floors, some, some are in pretty bad shape and we have to replace the floor there,” she said.
In 2017, the county followed a similar procedure for four showers in a block and those showers “look the same as the day they finished it,” McSherry said.
Commissioners Brad Jackson and Cary Groninger approved both RFP applications. Commissioner Bob Conley was absent on Tuesday.
Kosciusko County Highways Department Superintendent Steve Moriarty asked the commissioners to set a release date to announce the 2021-2 Community Crossings Matching Grant the county received.
“That’s over $892,000 provided to us to pave Old 30 and Old 15,” he said. “So we would like to advertise to be able to open these offers.”
He said they wanted to advertise on Jan. 26 and Feb. 2, which meets the state’s advertising requirements. Bids would open Feb. 15 and be awarded March 1 and would comply with Indiana Department of Transportation regulations with the Community Crossings grant.
“It’s something that we’re continuing to leverage these grants for this 50/50 game, so we’re able to… do a project of about $1.8 million for half of that. That so really helps stretch our taxpayers’ money here in the county for these projects,” Groninger said.
Moriarty’s publicity request has been approved.
Groninger then praised Moriarty for his hard work.
Moriarty provided commissioners with a report on its road program for 2021 on Tuesday. The department of Moriarty was able to touch just over 112 miles of county roads. The county has approximately 1,100 miles of road.
“That means he hit nearly 10% of our roads last year with funds given to him to keep improving our roads. We really appreciate his and his department’s hard work and continue to try to maintain our county roads and give us the infrastructure we need to be able to keep people coming and going. So we appreciate all of your hard work, Steve,” Groninger said.
Deputy Planner Matt Sandy presented the commissioners with a zoning ordinance amendment regarding rooftop solar systems. He reminded the commissioners that about a year and a half to two years ago the county passed an amendment to the solar ordinance, “making it pretty much limited to the areas that we really wanted to see this development happen by allowing setting up smaller systems where they fit within the parameters of the order that have been put in place.
Sandy said when they talked about the original amendment, they considered allowing residential rooftop solar systems, but not much more.
“We’re seeing more growth in solar areas and companies are really looking to try and implement that in their proximities and systems,” he said.
With that, he said they’ve run into a few instances where the county’s ordinance is restrictive enough that it no longer allows businesses to install the solar power they need.
“We are only talking about roof-mounted systems. We’re still sticking with the parameters around ground mounted systems, but we’re looking to open the door for anyone – corporate, industrial, residential, what’s already in place – to install rooftop mounted systems on their building, on their The existing building. The existing roof that’s over there, doesn’t extend beyond those roofs, so they’re still in the setback areas,” Sandy said.
The new zoning amendment requires that all state, local and federal regulations be followed.
The Regional Plan Commission approved a unanimous recommendation to the commissioners to approve the new zoning amendment, which the commissioners did.
Sandy also told commissioners that the county’s overall plan is progressing well. At the February meeting of the Planning Commission, this council will receive an informal presentation of the plan, but there will be public meetings about it, via Zoom. Commissioners will bring something in March or April.
Sheriff Kyle Dukes provided commissioners with a report on the commissioner’s fund for the last six months of 2021. The fund comes from when inmates make purchases, mostly groceries, at the jail.
“And when you look at our commissary for 2021, and some of the larger purchases, you have to start with three police vehicles. It was a bit of a unique situation because we found three police vehicles that were currently in a parking lot. Instead of ordering them, waiting four to six months, they were there,” Dukes said.
The Kosciusko County Sheriff’s Office was able to purchase two Dodge Chargers and a Ford Explorer. Dukes said they’ve also done some trades on some Ford Explorers that have between 170,000 and 180,000 miles and it’s time to trade them in.
He said the cost of the three vehicles, after trade-ins, was $68,081.
Another major purchase for the commissioner in 2021 was rugs, he said. Much of the sheriff’s office was carpeted, along with jail and work release offices. The bill for the carpet was $39,000.
In 2021, Dukes said they also needed to replace a treadmill in the prison kitchen and it had to be specially ordered due to its size. The cost was $9,870.85.
With the commissioner’s money, Dukes said he was also able to purchase office furniture for $10,542.27. Eleven new chairs—which were extra wide and sturdy to accommodate officers’ gun belts and equipment—were purchased for $6,044.92.
Tasers with extra batteries cost $9,551.71. Dukes said they also had a lot of small purchases, including equipment for three deputy sheriffs who had just graduated from the Indiana Law Enforcement Academy.
The commissioner’s balance “currently,” Dukes said, is $214,927.72.
In other cases, Commissioners:
• Approved Moriarty’s request to purchase a 2022 Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck from Lakeside Chevrolet, Warsaw, for $43,953. He said the expense was in his 2022 budget.
• Approved the Memorandum of Understanding between the City of Warsaw and KCHD for snow removal and road maintenance. Moriarty said it was an extension of what they did last year and that this deal was for three years. The Warsaw Common Council has already signed it, he said.
• Announcement of the next meeting of Commissioners at 9:00 am on February 1 in the Old Courtroom of the Old County Courthouse.
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