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New Bedford Police Officers Sworn In
Updated April 23, 2014 7:01 AM | Filed under: Politics
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(BEDFORD) - Mayor Shawna Girgis swore in two new Bedford Police officers Jesse L. Crane and Rachael Childers

Bedford Chief of Police Dennis Parsley expressed confidence in their abilities to make a positive impact.

The board also accepted Parsley's recommendation to make permanent Jim McCreery's position as dispatch supervisor and Stephanie Fitzgerald's job as Indiana Data and Communications System coordinator. He explained both had served admirably during the customary probationary period.

Bob Bridge of the Times-Mail reports that while some of the items on the agenda amounted to tying up loose ends, others constituted essential steps in moving forward with the city's expansive downtown renovation project. The board accepted two bids for work on the new building at Harp Commons, which is funded by a $50,000 grant that was matched with $50,000 in local money.

The project, currently underway, includes renovating the recently purchased Jenkins structure on the west side of the pocket park. John Hawkins of Kovert Hawkins Architects drew the design, which includes a large stage and restroom facilities.

Two bids were received to provide flooring, and two more were submitted for installing a suspended ceiling. The board approved Tri-County Builders' bid of $5,360 for the drop ceiling and Affordable Flooring's quote of $4,118 for the carpeting.

The board voted unanimously to enter into an agreement with Bernardin Lochmueller and Associates to assist in the courthouse plaza renovation plan, which is part of the Stellar project. Marla Jones, the city's business and community development director explained they will come up with a proposal to do the streetscapes and trail work.

Mayor Girgis noted a committee, including Lawrence County Commissioner Bill Spreen and County Treasurer Paula Stewart have been working with the contractor on the design possibilities.

For the past four months the city has been researching its best options for internet service. Bids from Smithville, Comcast and U.S. Signal were submitted for a new fiber voice and data system. The board voted unanimously to accept Comcast's proposal. The deadline for installation of the new system is August, 2014.

Lisa Zehr, director of operations and deputy clerk-treasurer for the city, sought and received permission from the board to implement a health training program through Indiana University Health for the inaugural Bedford Mini-Marathon in October. The purpose is to encourage employees to participate in the mini-marathon, to become more active and hopefully more productive.

Zehr says the cost is $750 and her goal is to have a minimum of 25 participants.

The board accepted two change orders totaling approximately $9,500 for the city's ongoing storm drainage improvement project.

In other action, the board signed a document leasing the former Limestone Co. Building to Oakland City University, which recently donated it to the city. OCU will continue to offer classes there.

The board also approved a request by Arthur and Lisa Wilmoth for an easement at 659 Riley Blvd. and granted Kenneth and Elsie Brock permission to create a minor subdivision in an area of W Street between 30th and 33rd Streets. After a lengthy discussion, the board tabled Wilbern Terrell's request for an easement at 1004 M St.

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