Progress seen on Leesburg site


The industrial park in Leesburg is progressing toward becoming certified by the state, which would make it more visible to prospective businesses looking for a site.

According to Highland County Board of Commissioners President Shane Wilkin at Wednesday’s meeting, he and deputy clerk Nicole Oberrecht have submitted the restrictions and covenants, which sets the parameters for a site, to South Carolina company InSite for review.

Wilkin said he and Oberrecht went through “several sets” to come up with what would work best for the site.

He said a request by the village of Leesburg for the installation of a bulk water filling station on the property has also been sent to InSite for the consulting firm’s input.

In 2014, the industrial park was among sites in the county that were surveyed by InSite, a consulting firm, as part of a program known as Community Economic Development Academy (CEDA), which was sponsored by AEP.

Commissioners since then have been working to get the Leesburg Industrial Park certified, with Wilkin recently saying that “phase one environmentals” were needed before site certification could happen. Last week he said commissioners are looking to get quotes for both the Leesburg and Greenfield industrial parks for that.

Once the Leesburg site is certified, the industrial park would be listed by the state of Ohio as a certified building site, and would be more visible to those looking for a place for their business.

In other business, Wilkin said there are to be projects on the courthouse commencing in the spring that will include masonry work, painting the cupola, and other projects.

The funds for the work are from the state in the form of Capital Improvement funding.

On another matter, Randy Gilbert of Gilbert Construction told commissioners he was disputing the final payment with the county’s architect firm, DS2, as Gilbert has been assessed $9,400 in penalties for the amount of time that has elapsed on the project.

While aspects at the Hi-Tech Center project have been delayed for various reasons, like weather and change orders, Gilbert said he already had “cut every inch of fat” from the project, and was not making a profit. He wondered if maybe he missed filling out the proper paperwork for time extensions, but he said he disagreed with DS2’s assessment, later saying it was “not just.”

Each commissioner, though, said they relied on the recommendations of DS2.

Adam Raines with DS2 said the project, while extended 49 days initially for weather, is now 94 days past deadline.

On a related matter, a bid for $2,300 was accepted to construct a concrete slab at the Hi-Tech Center. HVAC equipment, also part of the recent improvements at the building, will be secured to the slab.

Reach Angela Shepherd at 937-393-3456, ext. 1681, or on Twitter @wordyshepherd.

From left, commissioners Jeff Duncan, Shane Wilkin and Tom Horst are pictured at Wednesday’s meeting. left, commissioners Jeff Duncan, Shane Wilkin and Tom Horst are pictured at Wednesday’s meeting.
Hi-Tech contractor disputes penalty costs

By Angela Shepherd

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