hear request for new building
Probation officer raises safety concerns
The Ripley County Probation Office is in need of a new location,
according to Shannon Schmaltz, director. His request to consider
the purchase of a new building was made at the regular commissioner
meeting on Monday, November 30.
According to Schmaltz, the office has been at its current location
at 102 W. 1st NorthStreet, Versailles, for 11 years and is now
causing health and safety issues for the nine employees.
When given the opportunity to address their concerns regarding
the work conditions, the main employee concern was for health
issues such as allergies, sinus infection, or breathing problems.
These concerns were sent to Schmaltz via emails, which were provided
to the commissioners along with the request for a new office location.
According to Schmaltz, property across from the current annex
is available for sale for $195,000, and would provide adequate
space for the probation and technology offices, as well as additional
space for expansion. Although there is a newer furnace and central
air unit, the building will require additional work such as an
elevator, carpet, and data lines for the computers.
Circuit Court Judge Carl Taul and Superior Court Judge James Morris
expressed their support for the need of new office space for the
probation office. According to Judge Morris, he sees the purchase
as a relatively inexpensive option which would provide office
space for future growth. Judge Taul told the commissioners that
the purchase of the building would improve the employees working
The commissioners acknowledged that the current location for the
probation and technology offices is in need of repairs, but the
purchase of another building would need some consideration.
Mary McCarty, Southeastern Indiana Regional Planning Commission,
updated the commissioners on upcoming funding opportunities to
benefit communities in the county that were affected by flooding
in 2008. According to McCarty, there were more than 80 counties
that were declared a disaster area at that time. The total $253
million will be used across the state for several projects including
clearing waterway blockages. More information will be learned
at workshops scheduled in January, according to McCarty.
In other business:
The commissioners unanimously approved the request by the
Knights of Columbus to hold a prayer on the square event on January
18 beginning at 11 a.m.
The motion to enter into a contract with CSI for the new
court system was unanimously approved.
The motion to give Junior Heaton, county highway supervisor,
the authority to execute a change order for Bridge #72 in the
amount of $9,086 was approved. The change was due to the unforeseen
need for additional materials.
All commissioners were in attendance, along with county auditor
Mary Ann McCoy and county attorney Neil Comer to advise. The next
meeting will be held on Monday, December 14 beginning at 7 a.m.
at the Ripley County Highway Garage in Osgood and reconvening
at the courthouse annex at 8 a.m.