County gets grant money

STEUBENVILLE – Jefferson County commissioners Wednesday were informed the county engineer’s department received $663,165 in grants from the Ohio Public Works Commission for various projects throughout the county.

The grant money will help pay for work on a bridge on county Road 56, bridge replacement on county Road 51, paving on county Road 9, county Road 15 slip repair and resurfacing, a county Road 26 slip and paving on various township roads.

County Engineer James Branagan said grants will pay for 50 percent to 89 percent of the projects.

The commissioners also opened bids for some of the work on Wednesday.

Three companies bid on the county Road 26 slip repair job. Ohio-West Virginia Excavating of Powhatan Point was the apparent low bidder with a bid of $82,242. The engineer’s estimate was $86,647.

Two companies bid on the paving job in Island Creek, Wayne and Wells townships. The estimate was $340,242. Lash Paving of Colerain was the apparent low bidder with a bid of $309,010.

Commissioners also met in executive session with representatives of MS Consultants and the county’s water and sewer department to discuss yard restoration complaints following the Crestview-Belvedere sewer project. MS Consultants is the engineering consultant for the project and is responsible for inspection of the work.

Commissioners have received complaints from residents about the yard restoration work done by Rudzik Excavating, the contractor for the project.

Commissioner Tom Gentile said MS Consultants assured the commissioners the yard restoration complaints will be addressed. Commissioners will be doing a walk-through of the entire project in the next several weeks to point out problem areas.

Gentile said there also are concerns with work done on township streets. He said some of the lines dug in the sewer restoration have sunk on the roads because of faulty soil compaction.

Commissioners also agreed to sell water to the Edison Local School District at a bulk rate of $7.50 per 1,000 gallons for watering playing fields at school facilities. The school district won’t have to pay the minimum monthly rate as other water customers since the school district only uses water on the fields during several months of the year. Commissioners said it is legal for the county to charge the bulk rate to another public entity.

Commissioners said they will send a letter to the school district outlining the cost.

Commissioners agreed to provide Friendship Park with the remainder of cash for the park’s annual budget.

County Commissioner David Maple said he wants to meet with the park board to review its budget.

Branagan, who also sits on the park board, said it is a problem every year with the park board getting money from the commissioners for the park’s operating budget.

Commissioners have provided the park $90,000 so far this year for operations and for constructing a lift station for the park’s new sewer system.

Gentile urged the park board to finish the sewer system so the park could open its new campground site. Gentile said the 18 campsites at the park could generate $500 a month in rent to gas and oil industry workers, making the park’s budget more self-sufficient.

County Commissioner Thomas Graham said the commissioners have financially supported the park’s budget. He made the motion to give the park board an additional $25,000.

Commissioners also:

Gave permission for the county’s prevailing wage coordinator to work for the county regional planning commission for a Community Development Block Grant project involving sewer installation in Adena.

Were informed by the county Prevention and Recovery Board of the reappointment of Dr. Frank J. Petrola to a four-year term on the board.

Announced the meeting on July 18 has been rescheduled for 9 a.m. on July 17.