Harrison to welcome loading facility

CADIZ Midwest Terminals of Toledo has officially taken over the lease agreement for the 21 acres of land adjacent to the Harrison?County garage. The transfer from MarkWest to the Toledo-based company took place Wednesday during the Harrison County commissioners’ meeting.

According to Fred Deichert, CFO of Midwest Terminals, the company which currently runs the docks for the Port of Toledo, will now officially take over construction and operation of the loading facility.

“We have a contract with MarkWest to run the terminal,” Deichert said. “After we had completed the detail drawings, our facility and only our facility was on the county property so MarkWest suggested we take over the lease.”

“We have been running the construction operation,” the CFO said, adding that when the initial lease agreement was signed, his company was in negotiations to run the facility. “Now that the contract has been finalized, it just makes sense for us to take over the lease.”

The rail yard will ship liquids from the MarkWest condensate facility located just across Ohio 22 from the location.

“This area of the Marcellus Shale produces ‘wet gas’ that is rich in hydrocarbons, and when condensate comes out of the wells, it is like fizzy pop,” Deichert explained, saying that the condensate facility removes the lighter hydrocarbons. “They de-fizz it, send it to us and we load the rail cars.”

“The facility will include two holding tanks which are connected to pumps supplying the train loading racks,” Deichert added. “The rail yard will include some in house switching locomotives which will assemble the trains and pull them out onto the line where Columbus and Ohio Railroad will haul them on the spur some six and one half miles to the Cadiz Junction line.”

The lease agreement will remain the same, charging $1,000 per month for the property. “MarkWest sells the material and we ship it,” the CFO said. “We anticipate that the rail yard should be finished and in production by Thanksgiving.”

Commissioner Don Bethel explained that under the terms of the lease that MarkWest guarantees the payment if something should happen that Midwest Terminals would discontinue operations.

Karen Couch, director of Rural Transit, told the board during a public hearing that citizens wishing to review the application for an operating grant could obtain copies at the Harrison County Rural Transit Office.

Fares will remain unchanged under the proposed changes. Currently all users must schedule service 24 hours in advance for in county trips and provide five days notice for out of county trips. Fares are presently $2 per one way trip within the village, $4 within the county and $10 per one way trip up to 40 miles. Anything more than 40 miles is an additional 25 cents per mile. Children under five ride free.

Couch explained that Rural Transit is also applying for two replacement mini vans.

Commissioner Bethel complimented the director, “We commend you and the board for turning the ship and getting the finances under control.”

Sheriff Ron Myers told the commissioners that the rain on Tuesday had flooded the basement of the sheriff’s office. “We had six inches of water on the floor,” the sheriff stated. “While no electronic equipment was damaged, we need to get that taken care of before winter.”

The board addressed road issues and passed Agreement 59-14, a Road Use and Maintenance Agreement (RUMA) with Hess Exploration. The agreement covers .25 miles of Harrison 28 in Athens Township.

A request from Chesapeake to replace a previous RUMA for Harrison 17 was tabled. The new agreement would replace 21-11 passed on Oct. 21, 2011. The reduced mileage, from 2.94 mi. to 0.9 mi. caused commissioner Bethel to question making the changes without inspecting the 2.04 mi. section of road being released.

“While Chesapeake has been a good steward and has maintained the road, I feel it would set a good precedent if we made it policy to inspect all roads before releasing them from any RUMA,” Bethel stated. “I suggest we table this agreement until we have a chance to drive out and inspect the road personally.”

The motion passed and the agreement was tabled.

Doug Crabtree, president of Harrison County’s EMS Association, was asked to update the status of restoring full volunteer EMS service to Harrison County. Crabtree reported that Hopedale was preparing to finish their class and Cadiz also has new members coming in.

“Overall we are progressing well around the county,” Crabtree said.

Palmer may be reached at mpalmer@timesleaderonline.com.