By JIM MAURER

STAFF WRITER

An Indiana architecture/engineering company will be the next to present its credentials to the Hancock County commissioners for expansion or construction of the county jail.

RQAW Corp., an engineering/architecture company based in Fishers, Indiana, will talk with the commissioners on March 12. A similar meeting was held with personnel from DLZ, a Columbus-based engineering/architecture company, on Feb. 14.

The commissioners will have to advertise for requests for qualifications from companies before selecting a company to design the jail.

The structure will include additional rooms to provide programs which assist inmates dealing with mental or drug conditions, for instance. It would take about two years to complete design and construction.

Separately, county Auditor Charity Rauschenberg said a human resource company will help fill two positions in the information technology department, overseen by the auditor.

Also, the auditor said a $129,000 reduction in sales tax receipts, due to a refund, left the February sales tax figures at about 4 percent over the same period last year.

Commissioner Mark Gazarek said the Hancock County Sanitary landfill does not have the problems discussed recently at the Sunny Farms Landfill near Fostoria, which has been emanating strong odors from construction debris accepted by rail cars from the East Coast. The landfill’s owner is based in Connecticut.

Commissioner President Tim Bechtol said the County Commissioners Association of Ohio opposed Gov. Mike DeWine’s proposed 18-cent per gallon increase in the gasoline tax to provide funds for roads and bridges. Each county would receive funds.

The organization said the state agency has about $309 million in debt service, which if eliminated would provide additional funds, he said.

Separately, the commissioners met in closed executive session to discuss pending litigation. No action was taken after the session.

Maurer: 419-427-8420

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