Commissioners appoint Webb as Highway Superintendent and Sanders as new human resource director

LAWRENCE CO. – Lawrence County Major Travis Sanders was appointed the county’s new human resource director. Sanders is replacing Brian Skillman who resigned from the position.

Travis Sanders

Sanders currently holds a position at the Lawrence County Sheriff’s Department.

The commissioners also approved Assessor April Stipp’s request to appointed Mike Flick to serve on the appeals board. Flick will replace Wally Branham who served on the board and had to resign after being elected as a commissioner.

The commissioner appointed Interim Highway Superintendent Brandi Webb to the position permanently this morning. Webb is replacing David Holmes who resigned from the position. Webb before becoming interim superintendent was the bookkeeper for the department. Filling that position will be Jamie Woods.

Brandi Webb

Webb reported highway crews are cutting brush, patching potholes, and mowing.

Webb also presented the commissioner with a contract to proceed with the sign replacement in both District 2 and District 3. The project with be released for bids in September and completed in June 2023.

Webb said crews continue to deal with the aftermath of Saturday’s storms.

“We had downed trees, minor washouts and are dealing with some log jams at our bridges,” added Webb. “Crews will be working on the log jam at Wood Farm Road tomorrow.”

Emergency Management Director Valerie Luchauer gave an update on Saturday’s storm damage.

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Valerie Luchauer

Luchauer said Lawrence County had significant damage.

“We had anywhere from 2 inches of rain up to 8 inches fall in parts of the county depending on where you were at,” she added. “We had four homes flood and the occupants had to be evacuated and there were five water rescues.”

Luchauer said the problem with water rescues is that motorists don’t see the flood water in the dark.

“Their headlights shine right over the water and they don’t realize how deep it is,” she added.

Luchauer says residents who have had significant damage to their homes or property should contact Luchauer’s office at 812-277-9680.

“It must be significant damage, not just one or two shingles blown off their roof,” she added. “There is help available, just contact our office.”

Crews will begin paving county roads on June 1 in District 2 then crews will move to District 1 and then District 3.

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Sheriff Mike Branham

Sheriff Mike Branham reported the jail is at 77 percent capacity this morning with 139 inmates, of those 114 were male, 25 females, three Level 6 felons, 17 Department of Correction holds, and one parole hold.

Sheriff Branham reported the department had 5 water rescues on Saturday and one deputy got into water over waist high and which destroyed his TAZER weapon and body camera while helping rescue a family from a flooded home.

“We had some huge trees down,” added Sheriff Branham. “I was impressed with the responses of our highway crews, volunteer fire department personnel, and others who lent a helping hand.”