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Commissioners hear updates about projects

Kaitlyn Clay, Staff Writer, [email protected]

Most of Monday morning’s meeting of the Harrison County Board of Commissioners was centered on a status update from the Harrison County Community Foundation.

Julie Moorman, the president/CEO of the HCCF, shared an update about a grant the Foundation received from Lilly Endowment Inc. This is an implementation grant, which is a follow up to the planning grant that was previously received.

Through the planning grant, the Foundation was able to gather community leaders together and survey residents to come up with the top five priorities for the county’s future. What they learned during that time period, Moorman said, is that each town needs to create an asset management plan or update an existing one.

With the new implementation grant from Lily Endowment, Moorman said she will travel to the 10 incorporated towns in the county to work on these plans and help leaders create them, which could ultimately turn into a potential plan for the county in the future. The grant is good for four years, she said.

Moorman also introduced Zach Stephens, with Mainstream Fiber Networks, who gave the commissioners an update on the progress and expansion work of the internet resource for Harrison County residents.

According to Stephens, Mainstream is expecting to service more than 3,000 households in the county. This number has multiplied their mileage reach by six times its amount since last year.

Currently, the fiber company has a total of 251 zones it services, which all range in size based on infrastructure and land layout. A year ago, that number was at 172 zones, Stephens said.

Stephens also noted that Mainstream has recently updated its website. Now, users can see mapping that explains what stage of service their residential area is in. Anyone on the site will be able to see if their home is in an available, construction, qualified, proposed expansion or unavailable area.

Also at the meeting, Greg Reas, director of the Harrison County Emergency Management Agency, proposed that the county purchase multiple digital message board signs that could be placed on the side of roads to direct traffic flow. His main concern and priority for where they could be placed currently is at the COVID-19 testing site at the May & Joe Rhoads Memorial Pool in Corydon.

The commissioners agreed to take this suggestion under advisement.

Commissioner Kenny Saulman noted they will be able to make a better decision once they learn more about how much money the county will have remaining from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act after their special meeting today (Wednesday) at 1 p.m. to discuss this matter.

The commissioners’ next regular meeting is scheduled for Monday, Nov. 16, at 7 p.m. at the government center in Corydon.