Council doles out $1.1 million
Harrison County Council members did Monday night what they do best, and they did it in record time.
In just under 15 minutes, the seven representatives handed out more than $1.1 million in riverboat revenue.
Milltown got $227,000 to help with its infrastructure project on the Harrison County side of town; Commissioner James Goldman got an extra $400,000 to finish road projects in his northern district, and the commissioners got $2,500 to pay for several surveys, including one in Mauckport for the proposed boat launch site.
Riverboat revenue sharing was also approved, totaling more than $473,000.
Harrison County’s neighbors ‘ Crawford, Washington and Floyd counties, and New Albany and Georgetown ‘ shared $353,716, while Harrison County’s 10 incorporated towns each got $7,074 plus a percentage of riverboat funds earmarked for infrastructure improvements.
In rounded figures, Corydon received $26,081; Crandall, $1,462; Elizabeth, $1,509; Laconia, $754; Lanesville, $5,046; New Amsterdam, $103; New Middletown, $802, and Palmyra, $6,084.
The council also approved $3,778 in the courthouse repair and maintenance fund for repairs to the elevator in the courthouse, which is not slated for replacement during the renovation. The county general account took a hit of $36,000 for unemployment payments and for the deductible on an insurance policy.
Goldman said the unemployment is being paid under claims approved for former employees of the sheriff’s department, prior to Sheriff G. Michael Deatrick taking office Jan. 1. As a result, a copy of each claim for unemployment will be sent to the county attorney by the auditor’s office.
The council also approved $5,120 to pay Shawn Donahue as a part-time summer intern in the prosecutor’s office at the rate of $10 hourly. Donahue made the request on behalf of the prosecutor Dennis Byrd, who, Donahue said, was at home tending to a crying daughter in distress over the start of kindergarten.
The council at first denied the request, but OK’d it after Byrd, hastily summoned by telephone, appeared. He told the council his wife had arrived home to take care of the daughter.
Donahue has taken the bar exam but hasn’t yet learned the results.
The request, plus all others, passed unanimously.
The council also gave approval for Goldman to seek quotes on repairing and refinishing the conference table and chairs in the Circuit Court jury room.
Steve Gilliland, director of the Harrison County Community Foundation, told the council that fire department evaluations have been completed and copies of the report had been given to each council member. Gilliland will be at the next meeting to answer any questions. In response to a question concerning how well the departments are equipped, Gilliland told the council: ‘I’d say we’re above average.’ Copies are being distributed to officials and are available in the auditor’s office.
Council chair Gary Davis announced that the first meeting of the long-range planning committee had been held Thursday. The general scope of planning was discussed.
Suggested committee members include commissioners J.R. Eckart, Jim Heitkemper and Goldman, councilmen Gary Davis, Carl Duley and Kenny Saulman, county engineer Darin Duncan, and highway superintendent Glen Bube.
Davis also announced preliminary budget hearings with elected officials and/or department heads start today at 5 and continue through Saturday.