Commissioner Corner – July 2014

July has been a “happening” month here in Darke County, and in neighboring counties. This month has seen the “4th of July Fireworks” displays in a lot of local communities, the “Country Concert” in Shelby County, a very successful “First Friday” in Greenville, and a successful “Food Truck” gathering, also in Greenville. The “Kings Royal” and the “NASCAR Camping World Truck Series” races at Eldora were this month, plus “The Annie Oakley Festival”, and the “Gathering at Garst”! I am sure that a lot of you are looking forward to just chilling out at home, or a pool, or a campsite for a while. I know I am!! Better rest up, because August brings the “Great Darke County Fair”!!

Along with all the events for people to enjoy, the Darke County Commissioners have been slowly/busy, if that makes sense. The Office Staff and Commissioners have been busy preparing and working on various projects and now waiting for responses and/or approvals of these efforts. We are in good shape when all of this comes back, as we know it, it will all be at once! Some things have been done, though, like the Wagner Avenue Plaza, and the Sheriff’s office. The Wagner Avenue Plaza has now had the back of the building resurfaced, and the rest of the lot crack sealed. We have been told that approximately the first week in August, the front and sides of the complex will receive its asphalt covering. Walls Brothers will be doing the work, and as soon as we know their schedule, we will post it on our website, “mydarkecountyohio.com” and on our Facebook page, “Darke County Ohio”. The Sheriff’s office is finally having their plumbing problems fixed. Enviro-Flow out of Zanesville, Ohio is relining the sewer lines with a resin that should solve the problems for a long time. This much needed work is going as planned, and they should complete the work by the middle of August. Both of these projects are very expensive, but they have needed to be done for a long time. One thing we do know, is that we have the money to fix them now, and in the future, these projects would not get any less expensive, so now is the time. The ODOT relocation program is moving along quickly now. ODOT will build a new facility in the County’s new Industrial Park along St. Rte.’s 127 and 49. This upgrade for them is much needed, and should allow them to better service the Darke County State Highway system. We have other things working with ODOT, and as soon as we can, we will let you know. One of our honored employees, Sam Custer our OSU extension Agriculture Educator, has been chosen by the University to lead the new signature program “Nutrient Stewardship for Cleaner Water”. Sam also has informed us that the 2015 “Manure Science Review” will be held in Darke County. People from all over the Country will be in Darke County for this event. Congratulations to Sam on his appointment, and this event!

The Economic Development office has continued to be busy with some new projects, some expansion projects, and of course, Workforce Development. As we have stated in the past, workforce development will be a driving force for years to come. Our development efforts are bearing fruit, and the State, and other counties are taking notice. The last P4P meeting was held at Stillwater Golf Course, and for a mid-summer meeting, was well attended. People from the Dayton Development Region, along with people from Indiana, were there to hear our progress in workforce development. We have been told that no one is as far along as we are in this area, and that is a big “Thank You” to Marc, Lisa, and Melanie, and co-operation with other county’s E.D. directors here in southwest Ohio. This effort will continue to get bigger and better with committed individuals like them running the show. “Thank You” once again from all of us.

Next month is Fair time, but that does not mean things will completely stop in the County. We will continue with our weekly meetings here in the Commissioner’s office. You are always welcome to sit in on a session. We meet every Monday and Wednesday at 1:30 p.m. in our office at 520 South Broadway, just south of the Courthouse in Downtown Greenville. Stop by and say hello and learn what is happening in the County!

The Darke County Commissioners