Commissioners return grant

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In the only action of major significance at the regular monthly meeting of the full Board of County Commissioners, the commission voted unanimously to return the 2014 CDBG grant that had been obtained for improvements to the collection system at the Helenwood wastewater treatment facility and apply for a new CDBG grant to obtain much needed vehicles for the Scott County Ambulance Service.
At the time, the county still owned the treatment plant, but shortly thereafter they voted to turn the system over to the Town of Huntsville. In the transfer agreement, the county agreed to transfer the county CDBG grant to the Town of Huntsville, but that transfer was denied by the federal government.
This decision was later changed to allow the transfer, but by then Huntsville had their own CDBG grant. Since federal guidelines prohibit any recipient from having more than one open grant, the transfer couldn't legally be completed until Huntsville closed their current grant. Huntsville had targeted the finish of the project for the end of 2016, but higher than expected bid prices and other delays made this impossible.
The commissioners voted unanimously to return the 2014 grant and to apply for a community livability grant through the CDBG program. If obtained, the grant will be used to help offset the cost of buying vehicles for the Scott County Ambulance Service.
The board also heard from Ambulance Service Director Jim Reed that the purchase of a used ambulance from Colorado had been finalized.
Under the Finance committee report, commissioners heard that the committee authorized the issuance of a $500,000 loan from First National Bank of Oneida for the Scott County Road Department. The money was earmarked for general maintenance of county roads. When asked about the loan by Commissioner Rick Russ, Commissioner Mike Slaven stated that the loan was connected to the road department budget and did not need to come before the commission. During the meeting, Road Superintendent Dick Sexton did bring up the recent criticism on Facebook about the condition of some county roads. Directing his comments towards county residents, Sexton stated "If you have a problem with (the road department), call us instead of getting on Facebook." Sexton agreed that some county roads were in poor condition and attributed the cause to current weather conditions.
The issue of Building Codes was briefly discussed and will be looked at more closely in the coming months.
The commissioners will next meet in committees on February 6th starting at 6 p.m.

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