Commissioners discuss ballot issues

Michael Hart - Special to the Sentinel

County Engineer Eugene Triplett receives bid packets and discusses road repairs throughout the area.

POMEROY — The Meigs County Commissioners were short on chairs during a recent meeting.

Two November ballot items, reports from Jamie Jones of the emergency management agency and Gene Triplett of the highway department, and usual appropriation actions made up the agenda.

Commissioners thanked the recently retired Gloria Kloes for her longtime service, and were pleased to announce April Burnem as “the new face in here on Monday.”

There were 29 applicants and two rounds of interviews preceding her hiring.

“We wanted to make sure we had the right person for our proactive approach to the commissioners’ role,“ Commissioner Tim Ihle said.

A Meigs County Health District levy proposal was reviewed a final time and will be on the November ballot. The agency is seeking a five-year replacement levy of one millage.

Additionally, the board circulated a memorandum of understanding with the County Commissioners Association of Ohio regarding utilities, and intend to advocate for available aggregation of electric services on the November ballots.

“There will be an education process headed towards elections, but we’d like to get information on this out now,” Ihle said.

The association wishes to partner with the county to leverage lower electricity rates for Meigs residents, and the commissioners have a resolution pending that would place the issue on the ballot.

“I would like to see everyone have this option…even if someone intends to opt out they can vote yes and make it available to their neighbors,” said Commissioner Mike Bartrum.

Vince Reiber of the Meigs County Department of Job and Family Services presented a contract with Sojourners Care Network for respite care, which was noted to be only a single sheet of paper, unlike the multiple documents that typically accompany Chris Shank of the DJFS.

Jamie Jones, EMA director presented information from the U.S Small Business Administration for loans available due to the recent flooding that primarily impacted West Virginia. Meigs is the only county in Ohio added to the program.

He also delivered the newly released report on the April 28 functional exercise of the Local Emergency Planning Committee.

“We scored the highest we could on each segment, and the state observers were well impressed with our representation,” Jones summarized.

Bills were paid in the amount of $23,313.75 of a total $260,310.55.

The Community Development Block Grant money was used to establish two funds for a Litter Control grant and match (B028B01/2) of $18,851 and $1,885, respectively.

The Meigs Fair Board formally requested help with their August 15-20 event, which it described as becoming “more financially difficult,” and added “As in the past several years, we truly appreciate your financial assistance with this huge endeavor.”

During discussions, Commissioner Randy Smith stated, “In past years we jumped the amount from $7,000 to $10,000, we felt we had that available then. I feel we can appropriate the $10,000 again this year, though that isn’t a guarantee for next year.”

The Meigs County Commissioners meet every Thursday at 11 a.m. in the Meigs County Courthouse.

County Engineer Eugene Triplett receives bid packets and discusses road repairs throughout the area. Engineer Eugene Triplett receives bid packets and discusses road repairs throughout the area.

Michael Hart

Special to the Sentinel