Cathy May, Contributing Writer
The bridge over Cavehill Road was a major focus of the September
9 Ripley County Commissioners meeting. Commissioner Lawrence
Nickell closed the bridge last week until additional guardrails
can be installed.
John Graf, who was the inspector on the bridge project, reported
he is trying to get the guardrails included as part of the federal
contract. The 300' within the confines of the project would
cost about $17.50 a foot installed or $5,250. Ron May of the
Indiana Department of Transportation in Seymour is confident
that he can still get this done. He was called during the meeting
and said he thought he could get an answer in two days. The
project end date is Friday, September 14.
If the county is not able to get the additional guardrail as
part of the project, they could ask for it to be a Z item. That
means it could be done with the $10,000 of the countys
money that was not used in the project because of rip rap that
could not be used. This money will eventually be returned to
the county anyway.
The rest of the guardrail, which is outside the project limits,
will be very expensive to install. To extend the guardrail another
50' to 80', the shoulder of the road would have to be built
up. The cost for this section would be about $80.00 a foot.
There are also some right-of-way issues.
At this point the commissioners decided to wait and see what
Ron May could accomplish and go from there. The bridge will
remain closed until the guardrails go up.
A situation concerning a vacated road in Batesville was worked
out between the two property owners. Todd Cook appeared before
the commissioners and said he is quick claiming a 15' section
of the vacated road to Joe Smith, who will use it as a private
drive and will be gated. County Attorney Neil Comer was asked
by Cook if this issue could ever come up again. Comer said,
The only person who has a claim would be Joe Smith. If
he agrees not to, then the matter is finished. The commissioners
position is that the road was properly vacated four years ago.
The only issue left is differing surveys and that is a property
dispute between neighbors.
Bill Ulerich representing QPH (Quality Plumbing and Heating)
in Greensburg, presented the commissioners with a maintenance
agreement for the Ripley County Jail. QPH already has an agreement
to service the courthouse and the courthouse annex. The agreement
was for $7,800 a year, which includes four regular maintenance
inspections, plus changing the filters every six weeks for a
total of 80 hours a year. The commissioners took the matter
Tad Brinson appeared regarding planning and zoning issues. There
still is a stripped trailer in Pierceville that doesnt
seem to belong to anyone. The courthouse shows no owner of record
for the land it is sitting on and no taxes are being paid on
County Attorney Neil Comer said the state is sending out a Request
for Qualifications from engineering companies for a study on
water suppliers to supply potable water to meet both the short
and long term water needs for Decatur, Ripley and Jennings counties.
The RFQs have to be returned to the Indiana Finance Authority
by September 28. Interviews and reviews will be in November.
Comer said the Vernon Fork Regional Water District was close
to getting approval for formation.
In other business:
EMS Director Scott Huffman said he was submitting a grant
to the Ripley County Community Foundation for long backboards
Letha Wilson was re-appointed to the board for the SIEOC.
Autumn Hurm was appointed to the Batesville Library Board.
All three county commissioners were in attendance: Rob Reiners,
Chuck Folz and Lawrence Nickell. County Attorney Neil comer
and County Auditor Mary Ann McCoy were present to advise the
commissioners. The next regular meeting of the Ripley County
Commissioners is Monday, September 24 at 8:00 a.m. at the commissioners
room in the courthouse annex.
Are you the owner of
CATHY MAY PHOTO
This stripped trailer is located on Highway
350 in Pierceville. The county commissioners would like
to find out who owns the trailer and who owns the land
it is sitting on so they can get it hauled away. If you
have any information about the trailer or the property,
please contact Ripley County Auditor, Mary Ann McCoy at