Commissioners also open bridge, culvert bids

Additional security will soon be provided in one of Wayne County’s courts.

It’ll only be for Superior 3 right now because that’s all current funding will allow.

During their March 8 meeting, commissioners unanimously approved contracting with Whisenhunt Construction for $32,000 to provide shatter-resistant film for the courtroom and office glass and enhance the courtroom and office locking systems. Indiana’s Supreme Court has provided a $33,000 grant to finance the project. However, the Supreme Court did not provide additional funding this year that would have enabled similar measures for Superior 1, Superior 2 and Circuit Court.

Kory George, the county’s chief probation officer, said it would be ideal to protect all four courts right now, but the lack of funding makes that impossible. Superior 3 was chosen as the starting point because it’s particularly vulnerable, George said, because of the amount of glass on its doors and the office’s front wall.

The locking system will allow remote locking and unlocking of the courtroom and office.

The updates are precautionary and not in response to any rise in court security incidents.

George had originally presented the project March 1, but commissioners delayed action because George received Whisenhunt’s bid immediately prior to his presentation of another grant-funded project for an information kiosk and boards.

Bridge bids

Commissioners opened bids for two upcoming projects: a bridge replacement on Fountain City Pike and a culvert replacement at Smoky Row and Carlos roads.

Brumbaugh Construction of Arcanum, Ohio, bid $389,440 and Hoosier Pride Excavating of Middletown bid $392,700.70 for the Bridge 251 project.

Civil Con Inc. of Jeffersonville bid $80,572.55 to replace Culvert 854.

The county received Indiana Department of Transportation Community Crossings money to pay 50% of the project costs.

Commissioners unanimously voted to take the bids under advisement.

Immunization grant

Christine Stinson, executive director of the Wayne County Health Department, requested permission to apply for an annual immunization grant.

She is asking the state for $115,000; however, she does not expect to receive that. Stinson learned that a dozen counties who have not previously applied for funding are doing so this year.

“I have no doubt we’ll receive something,” Stinson said. “I have a feeling it will be close to the 2022-23 amount.”

The county received $57,000 in 2022.

The money pays for the contracted flu crew that provides off-site flu vaccinations at businesses. Stinson said she increased her request to expand that program and to utilize the mobile unit once each month in Cambridge City, Centerville, Fountain City and Hagerstown.

Commissioners unanimously gave permission for the grant application.

Courthouse projects

Crews are evident at the courthouse for two projects.

Bathroom renovations have begun on the second-floor women’s restroom, and work has resumed on the courthouse exterior. The exterior project began during the fall and paused for winter weather.

The bathroom project, which will make the bathrooms Americans with Disabilities Act compliant, is budgeted at $549,196 and the exterior project that repairs cracks and replaces limestone pieces is budgeted at $1,818,570.

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A version of this article appeared in the March 15 2023 print edition of the Western Wayne News.

Mike Emery is a reporter and layout editor for the Western Wayne News.