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Lawrence County Commissioners Proclaim April Donate Life Month
Updated April 5, 2017 8:55 AM
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(BEDFORD) - The Lawrence County Commissioners granted Coroner Rob Herr's request to proclaim April Donate Life Month.

Herr told the commissioners the proclamation would do three things:

  • Recognize the benefits to recipients of donations and the bright futures they have after receiving a transplant
  • Celebrates the generosity of people who choose to become organ donors and encourage registration to donate tissues and organs
  • To have families communicate with loved ones about being a donor and making their wishes known before a tragic event
  • The proclamation is an opportunity to celebrate our county's organ, eye and tissue donors and to inspire more people to say yes to donation.

Currently there are nearly 121,000 Americans on the waiting list for an organ transplant.

"When a person donates locally they can save between 50 to 100 people" Coroner Herr says. "This proclamation will help bring attention to the benefit of donating."

Herr works closely with Indiana Organ Procurement Organization (IOPO). IOPO's mission is saving and enhancing the quality of life through organ and tissue donation. IOPO is the federally designated organ procurement organization for Indiana and a certified tissue and eye recovery agency.

As such, they play several roles in the process of organ, tissue, and eye donation working closely with the donor families, transplant surgical teams and hospital staff, and the United Network for Organ Sharing.

Herr says the county morgue serves as a central location for the organization to do organ and tissue harvests for southern part of the state.

In other business:

Lawrence County Highway Superintendent David Holmes reported crews are busy cutting brush, hauling stone, patching roads and preparing for paving projects.

On April 10th the Indiana Department of Transportation will mill, resurface and stripe Old State Road 37 to the Monroe County line. Flaggers will be in place to direct traffic.

Bids to pave Wallner Quarry Road will be accepted until 9:30 a.m. on April 24. Bids will be reviewed and then approved on May 22. The road will be closed beginning May 30th and completed by July 31.

Work continues on Bridge 25, the Brent E. Steele Bridge, located on Leatherwood Road near Otis Park. Holmes says crews poured the deck on Monday and next week they will work on the approaches and guard rails. The contract with Duncan Robinson states the bridge must be finished by May 23.

Holmes received two letters of interest in the consulting work for Bridge 150 on Mill Creek Road. The bridge is considered a historical bridge and Holmes says that adds red-tape when doing repairs. The repairs could cost more than $1.4 million dollars.


Sheriff Mike Branham reported that there were 149 inmates in the Lawrence County Jail Tuesday morning. Of those, 37 were female, 18 were Level 6 felony offenders and there were 3 Department of Correction holds.

He says staff are busy learning the new Spillman Technologies, Inc. integrated computer aided dispatch system (CAD) software.

"We will go live with the new system in June," Sheriff Branham added.

Repairs will be coming soon to the restroom facilities at the jail.

"The bathrooms date back to 1989 and do not meet ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) standards," he added. "The repairs will be paid for with the money from the building repair budget."

The Sheriff's Department will be host to two upcoming training sessions.

"First, we'll be hosting Desert Snow, a drug interdiction program, and expect to bring 30 or more officers from all over the state here for that," he added. "About a dozen to 15 of those will be local. Then, in June, working with the Indiana Sheriffs Association, we'll host a National Sheriffs Association's court security training. It's two days of training for court security officers. All our staff will be going to that. There will be about 30 people in attendance."

Sheriff Branham says hosting the training sessions represents a cost-saving measure for the county.

Sheriff Branham is looking for a girl and a boy from each Lawrence County middle school to attend the 37th Annual Indiana Sheriffs' Association Youth Leadership Camp on June 5-7. Sheriff Branham will pay for their camp registration fee. Applications can be picked up at the department.


Approved a request by Rachel Fields in behalf of the Bedford North Lawrence Band & Music Boosters to host a fundraising event on May 20th. The event is a Junk in Trunk sale. Fields asked to close J Street and use Harp Commons for band performances from 8 a.m. until 2 p.m.. They will also be using the inside parking on the south side of the courthouse square. The group will be charging $20 per space for vendors to set up. If it rains that day the event will be held on June 3rd.


The Commissioners approved the county to use Neopost as their new mailing system. They will replace the county's mail machine which is more than 10 years old and save the county around $450 a year in costs.


The Commissioners approved a contract for Circuit Court, the clerk and auditor's office to switch from MAXIMUS, a privatizing company that provides business process services to government services agencies to Jeff Dossett Consulting. The switch will save the county $3,600 a year.


The Commissioners heard a request from Roger Webster to vacate a portion of Tunnelton Road. The area of road was once a county road, but is no longer used. Webster was told the Commissioners had no problem with the request, but he must first take the legal steps to vacate the property by getting a legal description, notify the surrounding property owners and advertise the issue. Once that is done the Commissioners would approve his request.


Emergency Management Director Valerie Luchauer says she continues to work on the county's emergency management plan to address issues with animals.

She also recently attended a biological terrorist seminar and is working on creating a exercise for local hospitals for infections disease control which will be held in May at French Lick.

Luchauer says she will be monitoring the weather on Wednesday, as strong storms are possible.

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