County to buy new boilers for jail

By JIM MAURER
STAFF WRITER

Marlin White and Sons, Fremont, has been awarded the contract for replacing three boilers at the Hancock County jail.

The Hancock County commissioners on Tuesday approved the company’s bid of $178,755, the lowest of four bids received. The project was estimated at $250,000, and all bids came in below the estimate.

The board’s action came after Commissioner Tim Bechtol, an architect, reviewed the bids and recommended the low bid.

The boilers are expected to be replaced next month, prior to the winter heating season. The work will be funded with borrowed money designated for jail renovations.

Separately, the commissioners transferred more than $26,000 to Job and Family Services for child placement costs, to assist with foster care and adoption services.

Last month, the commissioners met with Diana Hoover, director of Job and Family Services, about a projected $500,000 agency shortfall for the remainder of the year. In response, the commissioners agreed to transfer funds monthly for the remainder of the year.

The commissioners also approved two separate resolutions for home sewage treatment system replacements at properties in Van Buren and Arlington.

Robin Kershner Excavating, McComb, was approved to complete both projects. Each qualifies for 100 percent funding through a Water Pollution Control Loan Fund grant received by the county annually since 2014.

Aleta Boecker, Hancock Regional Planning Commission grants administrator, said the county received $150,000 through the program this year and was able to repair or replace 30 sewage treatment systems.

The Van Buren project will cost $8,200, while the Arlington project will cost $8,800.

The grant provides funds of 100, 85 or 50 percent based on the household income. The property owner is responsible for paying the amount not covered by the grant.

Boecker works with Hancock Public Health to identify eligible properties and secure funds.

Separately, Constitution Day, which marks the 231st anniversary of the signing of the U.S. Constitution, will be observed Monday. A group of volunteers will have a table near Dorney Plaza on the south side of the county courthouse main entrance from 9 a.m. to 4 or 5 p.m., to provide copies of the Constitution and literature about its history.

The commissioners recommended the location to avoid interaction with jail prisoners being brought to the courthouse by sheriff’s deputies.

Maurer: 419-427-8420
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