Highway Department Addressing Complaints Of Semis On Boyd Lane

(BEDFORD) – The Lawrence County Highway Department and the Indiana Department of Transportation are addressing complaints of semi tractor trailers traveling on Boyd Lane.

Highway Superintendent David Holmes shared this information with the commissioners Tuesday morning.

“We have received several complaints about semis on Boyd Lane and we are working to address the issue,” said Highway Superintendent David Holmes. “I have talked to INDOT and we are trying to remedy the situation. I think GPS is directing semis through that area. That road is just not meant for semi traffic.”

In other business:

  • The commissioners approved Community Corrections request to build a carport/garage in the back parking lot.

Chad Shew told commissioners the building will cost $9,908 and will be paid out of the Community Correction budget.

“Getting out to our vehicle is a challenge when it snows and we have to shovel out our vehicles,” Shew told the commissioners. “This will be a good improvement and we have the money in the budget.”

Shew also told the commissioner he is applying for a JAG Byrne grant of between $30,000 to $50,000 for the officer safety awareness program.

Human Resources Manager Brian Skillman said the IU Health 2020 Employee Wellness Screening for county employees will take place from Dec. 1 – Dec. 3.

Screenings will take place at the Courthouse Plaza in the former WorkOne location.

Benefits of the screening will include premium reductions and co-pays.

To schedule an appointment employees are asked to contact Skillman.

The screenings will be done for a total cost of $7,150.

The commissioners approved IT Director Scott Nikirk’s request to upgrade county employee’s emails to Google Workplace.

“The email we currently use has limited security,” Nikirk added. “We are looking at changing around 300 email accounts. It will cost around $6 per month for each email or around $22,000 a year but that may go down, we are still working out the details.”

Nikirk says the change will greatly increase security.

“This will give us added security. All we have now is a basic system,” he said. “90 percent of security attacks happen through email.”

Mark Dobbs, the new Community Planning and Liaison Officer at Naval Support Activity¬†Crane, hoped to introduce the commissions to the new commander James Smith, but an emergency came up and he couldn’t make the meeting.

Dobbs shared that great things are happening between Lawrence County and Crane.

Thanks to the Lawrence County Health Department and Emergency Management the base is able to do an outstanding job with contact tracing due to COVID-19.

The base also now has a 911 transfer agreement with the county. Allowing 911 calls made from cell phones on the base that come to the Sheriff’s Department to be directed to the Police Department on the base.

The agreement also provides a mutual aid if needed.

The commissioners signed a contract with Schneider Geospatrial who purchased 39 Degrees North the eGIS system for the county.

Lawrence County eGIS is a web-based application of land records for property in Lawrence County. Users can identify land use and surrounding property owners. Users can search by the property owner, address and tax identification number and print property records and sales information.

The commissioners signed a five year contract. The cost to the county is $24,084 a year.

The commissioners approved the 2021 holiday schedule and commissioner and county council meeting dates and the payroll and claims schedule.

Sheriff Mike Branham reported repairs on the front ramp are complete.

There were 136 inmates in the county jail Tuesday morning, of those 111 are males, 25 females, four Level 6 offenders, eight Department of Correction holds, and one parole hold.

Crews had to fix a drain pipe that broke on the roof of the jail. The repair cost $3,400 and was paid out of the building maintenance fund. The old pipes which are clay tile are splitting lengthwise making repairs costly.

Sheriff Branham along with Bedford, Mitchell, Martin, and Orange County law enforcement have applied for a JAG Byrne Drug Interdiction grant of $200,000. The grant will finance a drug task force. Task forces typically combine local, state, and federal law enforcement officers who collaborate to take down large-scale drug dealers and crime organizations and seize large quantities of drugs.

Sheriff Branham is also applying for a Community Highway Safety grant. The grant promotes a coordinated effort to improve occupant protection strategies, and reduce fatality and injuries related to seat belt usage and impaired driving.

Emergency Management Director Valerie Luchauer says her office has been busy.

“There was a burn ban in place, then flash flooding, tornado sightings in surrounding counties, a large field fire – thankfully no buildings or crops were lost and then a gas leak in Mitchell.”

Luchauer continues to work closely with the Lawrence County Health Department to help contain and educate the public about the spread of COVID-19.