County receives grant of $869,850 for infrastructure improvements

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The Switzerland County Commissioners met on Monday, October 16th and received news that the county has been awarded nearly $900,000 for infrastructure improvements.

Switzerland County Highway clerk Carla Armstrong, who wrote the grant with assistance from Highway Superintendent Darrell Keith, presented a check to the board in the amount of $869,850. The grant came from the state’s ‘Community Crossings’ program, and had to specify certain projects in the county that the money will be used for.

The grants will provide 75-percent of the funds needed for the improvements, while the county will be responsible for just 25-percent of the overall cost.

The projects that were approved are as follows:

– Bridge #26 on Log Lick Road, repairs: $57,375.

– Pleasant Grove Road, asphalt: $133,031.25.

– Plum Creek Road, asphalt: $158,193.75.

– Spring Branch Road, slide correction: $30,000.

– North Branch Road, slide correction: $30,000.

– Markland Pike, repair slips: $112,500.

– Culbertson Road, slide correction: $33,750.

– Bridge #8 Pendleton Run Road, replacement: $315,000.

– Grant Total: $869,850.

– Cost to county to complete projects: $289,950.

From the website of the Indiana Department of Transportation: “Community Crossings is a partnership between INDOT and Hoosier communities, both urban and rural, to invest in infrastructure projects that catalyze economic development, create jobs, and strengthen local transportation networks.

Since 2013, INDOT has provided more than $1 billion to cities, towns, and counties to complete the critical work of modernizing local roads and bridges. Community Crossings is a continuation of INDOT’s commitment to partner with communities to create local transportation networks that positively impact the quality of life for the people that drive, bike, and walk in the Crossroads of America”.

State Representative Randy Frye congratulated the county on the awarding of the grants in a letter dated October 3rd:

“I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate you and Switzerland county on being awarded funding through the Community Crossings matching grant program. Thank you to you and all involved who helped put together this application. The infrastructure funding will assist in community development and better the community for years to come.”

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In other items discussed by the County Commissioners:

• County Highway Superintendent Darrell Keith brought the estimates to replace three dump trucks. The prices ranged from $77,751 to $82,554 for the trucks, with an additional cost of $48, 325 for the beds. Keith said that the newest truck the county owns is now ten years old. No decision was made at this time.

• Bolton and Peck was awarded the bid for replacing the roof on the jail at the previous special meeting. Work has already begun.

• ETC was awarded the bid to replace all phone equipment in the county buildings.

• Angel’s Excavating was awarded the bid to erect fence around the wetlands at the Moorefield/Bennington Sewer Plants.

• The Commissioners and Council will hold a joint meeting on Wednesday, November 8th after the regular meeting. One of the topics will include the School Endowment by-laws.

Rosemary Bovard