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Commissioners look at repair of courthouse

LaGrange County Commissioners are looking at some “badly needed” repairs for the county courthouse.

 The dome was last painted in 1992. The roof is leaking around the four cupolas surrounding the dome and water is leaking into the courtroom.

It was also noted that many windowsills are deteriorating and the stone foundation needs to be remudded. “In other words, the building needs a major overhaul,” said Commissioner Larry Miller, who made a personal inspection of the roof last week. “I was about six feet from the clock when it rang,” he commented, “and I know I moved over a bit when that happened!”

Gary Mast, county building maintenance director, has asked for quotes from three firms for the repair work. If a quote comes in under $150,000, commissioners will be able to award the job to that contractor. If no quotes are lower than the legally acceptable amount, the quotes will not be made public and a public bid will be taken for the work.

Commissioners agreed to amend the zoning compliance fund ordinance to allow for the payment of a portion of the wages for the code enforcement officer to come from the fund.

A transfer of the command and control of the code enforcement officer from the LaGrange County Plan Commission to the LaGrange County Sheriff was also approved. Effective June 5, Code Enforcement Officer Jason Boggs will become a civilian employee at the sheriff’s department. Boggs’ office will be moved to the jail, where he can be reached at 260-463-4719 on a direct line or through communications dispatch at 260-463-7491.

Commissioners directed County Attorney Kurt Bachman to review county ordinances connected with code enforcement and make any modifications needed and bring them back to the commissioners for approval.

The county parks department was given approval to purchase 10 new tables. Five will be used at the Shipshewana Lake Pavilion and five at Dallas Lake Park. The tables will come from EarthLink at a cost of $4,195.80. Some refurbishing work is also scheduled for the Shipshewana Lake pavilion.

It was announced that the Tobacco Free Grant for the northeast four-county area has been approved in the amount of $141,595. Commissioners will be working with Tobacco Free Coordinator Greg Johnson to have an employment agreement in place by the June 17 meeting.