Leasing deal approved

CADIZ – Harrison?County Commissioners unanimously approved an oil and gas lease with Chesapeake Energy Wednesday for 83.66 acres in the industrial park.

Agreement 42-13 will pay $5,000 per acre for a total of $418,300 and a royalty of 20 percent on gas produced from any wells on the property.

“We are figuring out this is going to be a slow process,” said board chair Don Bethel. “We will continue to research county property for additional opportunities to find out if there are any more leases available to the county.”

The Harrison County Health Department asked the board of commissioners to consider purchasing a standby generator that goes on automatically. Andy Atkins explained that the vaccinations on hand for child immunizations would cost $60,000 to replace. “The drugs are monitored by the state for a constant temperature, and if they drop a few degrees, the medicine has to be thrown out,” Atkins explained.

The current generator must be manually started, and Atkins fears that as during past outages, the lag time to get someone to the facility to start the generator would allow the temperature to drop in the refrigerator and the contents would be lost.

“The last time we were lucky and lost just over $8,000 of drugs,” Atkins said, saying the state gave them a waiver on that occasion but the county would not expect to receive another.

The cost for the automatic generator with installation would be $5,733.32. The board told Atkins they would discuss and review the bid and give him an answer next week.

The board appropriated $10,000 into the Health District to facilitate the hiring of a part-time health inspector in March, and Atkins updated them on the vacant position, saying that they were currently advertising for applications.

Doug Crabtree had just one road use and maintenance agreement from the County Engineer’s office, agreement 43-13 with Ohio gathering LLC for roads in Cadiz and Nottingham townships. The board approved the agreement covering 3.3 miles of CR 1, 2.7 miles of CR 2 and 0.3 miles of CR 16.

Crabtree, Secretary of the Freeport Farmers Sportsman Club, also announced that the annual Youth Fishing Derby will be held this Saturday, May 18 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Twin Hills Park. Boys and girls ages three to 12 years are invited. Crabtree stated that more than 200 children have registered for the popular event.

Access Ohio Valley attended to inquire about a pending contract to sue county towers for broadband access. Commissioner Bethel relayed that the county prosecutors office was reviewing the contract but the process takes time. “We are not against competition in the area for broadband service,” Bethel said. “We are currently waiting on the prosecutor to review the documents.”

The board also approved the commissioner’s office public records policy which outlines procedures for requests for access to a public record.

Palmer may be reached at mpalmer@timesleaderonline.com.