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Board disconnects wireless option for parks

The Harrison County Council Monday night voted to deny the Harrison County Parks Department an additional for wireless capability in three of the most populated county parks.
At first, the council approved an additional of $900, which would pay for the service for one year. It was approved with a 5-to-1 vote; Councilwoman Leslie Robertson voted against.
But, when it came time to vote for the $15,000 additional for the equipment to be installed, Councilman Jim Heitkemper made the motion to deny, and Councilman Ralph Sherman seconded. The motion passed with a 4-2 vote. Councilmen William T. (Bill) Nichols and Richard Gerdon opposed.
Since the board then realized the $900 additional went with the wireless project, it went back and unanimously voted to deny the appropriation.
‘That’s what I thought,’ Robertson said. ‘That’s why I voted against it (at first).’
Heitkemper, after the meeting, said he thought the consensus of the board was to not spend more money on the parks, especially after they recently approved a $200,000 rest-room additional for Hayswood Nature Reserve west of Corydon.
‘Plus, parks are a place for you to go and just relax,’ he said.
Parks director Claudia Howard proposed the idea last month of having David L. Hulsebus, co-owner of Portative Technologies LLC, install the wireless option at the county’s three most-populated parks: South Harrison Park near Elizabeth, Buffalo Trace Park east of Palmyra and Hayswood Nature Reserve.
‘We really needed it for our staff, for weather and there are a number of other reasons we’d like to have it for our staff,’ Howard said last month.
Howard, who was not in attendance when the vote took place Monday, said the parks’ homepage site could have a ‘back site’ for employee administrative use. Employees could have e-mailed their daily reports instead of driving them in to the park.
Hulsebus told the board in February that the price is a significant savings to the county.
‘I like what the parks department provides for the county,’ he said.
The service would have been available on and along all of the roads in the parks and the campsites on a ‘line of sight’ from the three stations installed at each park.
The Harrison County Board of Commissioners passed the request on to the council with Commissioners Terry Miller and Carl (Buck) Mathes in favor, while Chairman James Goldman expressed disapproval and voted against it.
The council will next meet Monday, March 22, at 7 p.m. at the courthouse in Corydon.