When will the courthouse shine? PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 25 November 2009 00:00
    Work being done outside the Washington County Courthouse could delay the Christmas lighting being turned on this holiday season.
    Washington County  courthouse maintenance man David Wilcoxson gave an update on the washing and sealing work being done outside the courthouse at the Washington County Commissioner's regular meeting Nov. 18.
    Wilcoxson said the work will make lighting the court house difficult.
    “I can not change light bulbs or even turn the lights on while they are working,” he said. “At this point, each year I have changed at least 200 bulbs, that puts us behind. They may or may not be finished by December 5, it all depends on the weather.”
    December 5 is the day of Christmas on the Square and the lighting of the courthouse is a large part of those festivities.
     County Commissioner Lana Sullivan said there will be some unhappy folks if the lighting of the courthouse doesn't happen.
    “I know what happens if the lights don't come on and it's not pretty,” she said.
    Sullivan said the county will ask Washington County Sheriff Claude Combs for inmates to help to get the courthouse ready by December 5, if all the outside work is completed.
    “We will do our best to get (the courthouse) lit by December 5, but it will not be lit at Thanksgiving,” she said.     
    The commissioners addressed several other current issues facing the county.
    * Commissioner John Mishler informed the other commissioners and those in attendance that the county will receive a $50,000 grant from the Office of Community and Rural Affairs (OCRA) for the development of the comprehensive land plan.
    “The grant is to help us hire someone to help us write a comprehensive plan for Washington County,” said Commissioner Lana Sullivan.  
    The commissioners had just received word prior to the meeting that the grant had been awarded. That's why Mishear said the announcement was, “unofficially official.”
    Sullivan said once the county receives in writing that the grant has been awarded, the county will have 13 months to complete the document.
    “There will be several public meetings to receive input throughout that 13 month period,” she said.
    * Sullivan informed the commissioners that she received another name, Mike Hamilton, for the Delaney Park Board vacancy that was created when Paul Jolly stepped down earlier this month.
    Lester Powder was in attendance and stated his interest in serving on the board but could not be considered due to the the political side.
    The opening is for a registered Republican.
    The commissioners assured Powder they will keep his name for future vacancies.
    Delaney Park Manager Chris Strange told the commissioners that he is glad to see so much interest in the park board opening.
    No decision was made by the commissioners at this time. When they decided on Jilly's replacement, they will submit that name to Judge Robert Bennett for final approval.
    * The Washington County Highway Department material specifications for fuel, asphalt, stone and metal was approved and will open bids on December 8, at 10 a.m.
    * Commissioner Mishler also gave a brief update on the ambulance service in Washington County and had hoped that a representative from St. Vincent would be present to speak, but was not.
    The Commissioner made the decision to have a proposal wrote up to give to Knox County EMS if they are still interested in the service.
    “We do not want turn-over with EMS, it just is not good quality service,” Mishler said.  
    He said he will attend a meeting on November 19, and will, hopefully, have more answers at the next meeting.
    * Commissioner Sullivan reported that the Distressed Road agreement for the $258,000 interest free loan to repair Bridge 113 has been mailed to INDOT.
    Sullivan also reported on the CSX possibility to discontinue service through the Salem area and believes that it will have a detrimental effect from a economic standpoint. CSX had asked for comments regarding the effect, Sullivan asked if she could comment back and give her thoughts to the situation, Commissioner Dave Brown and Mishler agreed.
    Mishler said he would like to know who will maintain the 39 railroad crossing, if CSX discontinues service.
    Jess Helsel with the Washington County Economic Growth Partnership, said. “Rail is an economic factor. It will become increasingly important in the future. I would hate to see us give up on the rail.”
    The commissioners will find out more in the coming weeks regarding CSX service.
    The next regular scheduled Commissioners will take place on Tuesday, December 8, at 10 a.m. due to training for the Commissioners.
Last Updated on Tuesday, 24 November 2009 12:57