• John Barrett of the Whitley County Council presented an American flag to the Commissioners on behalf of Whitley County Native Cynthia Turner who is a Captain in the U.S. Navy with 22 years of service.
• Sheriff Mark Hodges presented the Commissioners with updates on two projects. The shower refinishing project is complete except for two areas that peeled off, but the CFO of the company came from Iowa to fix them himself. In addition, Hodges reported that GPS units are installed in all of the deputy officer’s vehicles. Hodges listed three reasons for installing GPS units: 1) officer safety 2) officer compliance with rules and regulations and 3) officer navigation. Hodges said that the system keeps records of speeds, trips and locations and will be reviewed on an as-needed basis.
• At the December 17, 2012 meeting, Whitley County Coroner-Elect Randy Dellinger requested to use his current Sheriff’s vehicle in his new position as Coroner once it was phased out of the fleet. At Monday’s meeting, Sheriff Hodges said that it didn’t matter either way, but he would prefer to keep the car that Dellinger is requesting, especially since it only has 81,000 miles on the odometer and is of sound mechanics. The Commissioners then voted unanimously to deny Dellinger’s request for a County vehicle.
In addition at the December 17 meeting, Dellinger voiced concerns regarding the office provided for him as Coroner, stating that the office that Commissioner Don Amber found for him was not in an advantageous location because the people he meets with would have to go through the police station and probation office to get to the private office. At Monday’s meeting, Amber reported that both he and Council member Barrett walked through the proposed office at separate times and found none of Dellinger’s objections to be valid.
• Scott Jones, department head of the e911 system, presented the Board with the results of the “Request for Proposal” (RFP) conducted by the Northeast Indiana 911 Consortium. The RFP showed that Frontier Communications partnering with INdigital will offer the lowest up-front costs and will meet all requirements for the new system. Four of the nine counties in the consortium are already using the Frontier/INdigital system and all highly recommend the equipment and service.
The next closest bidder did not meet all of the system requirements.
Jones said that the main push for a 911 Consortium is based on interoperability between counties in the instance of a disaster or any other issue that would displace a dispatcher from his or her home base. In addition, the Consortium increases buying power and drives down costs. Whitely County’s current system has become outdated and parts will no longer be available for the system after 2013. The Board of Commissioners voted unanimously to approve Frontier/InDigital for the new system. Jones noted that text 911 capabilities are set to be rolled out next spring.
The next Board of Commissioners meeting will be Monday, January 21 at 1 p.m. in the Board Room of the Whitley County Government Center.