Harrison takes step toward financial transparency

JOIN WEBSITE — Dan Risko, deputy director of public affairs for the Ohio Treasurer’s Office, left, posed with Harrison County officials Wednesday after the county joined OhioCheckbook.com. The website allows users to see how the county is spending its money, giving financial transparency to all transactions. On hand were, from left, Harrison County Commissioner Dale Norris, Harrison County Auditor Patrick Moore and commissioners Paul Coffland and Don Bethel. - Dylan McKenzie

CADIZ — Harrison County took a step toward financial transparency Wednesday as it joined a website that will help residents see how money in the county is being spent.

OhioCheckbook.com is a website launched in 2014 that allows residents to view the expenditures of their local and state government entities. Information from the U.S. Public Interest Research Group shows Ohio rose from 46th to first place in the nation in terms of spending transparency after the launch of OhioCheckbook.com.

Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel worked with Harrison County Auditor Patrick Moore to assist the county with signing on with OhioCheckbook.com, and on Wednesday, Dan Risko, deputy director of public affairs for the treasurer’s office, attended the county commissioners’ meeting to announce the partnership and to explain how the website works.

“We’re excited to have you on,” Risko said, adding the villages of Jewett, Scio and Hopedale also have joined OhioCheckbook.com, along with Cadiz Union Cemetery. “We’re continuing to do this all over the state.”

In other business during the commissioners’ meeting, Doug Crabtree, representing the Harrison County Engineer’s Office, brought bids for various materials for county projects, including gravel, slag, fuel and more. Crabtree recommended that commissioners accept the bids from the companies and said the county would determine on a case-by-case basis whether to pick up materials from the companies or have them delivered.

Crabtree also brought a request from the Short Creek Township trustees to have township Road 1010 in the unincorporated community of Georgetown named and added to the master street index for 911 purposes. Commissioners approved the official name change of the route to Rose Lane and will oversee adding it to the index.

Commissioner Paul Coffland thanked Crabtree for bringing the matter before the board.

“Fortunately there are very few of these in the county, but when we find them we do try to correct them and get the service update,” Coffland said.

Commissioners will not meet next week due to members being on vacation. The next meeting will be at 10 a.m. on March 26 at the courthouse.