The Highland County Board of Commissioners approved the placement of two carports at the Hi-TEC parking lot for use by Highland County Veteran Services (HCVS) at its amended Thursday morning meeting.
Tim Hazelwood, a representative for HCVS, said the carports were discussed by the HCVS board and approved, but still needed the approval of the commissioners. He said each carport costs $6,185, including installation, and will be paid for by the HCVS budget. Hazelwood also said each carport would have six anchors that would anchor the carport to the asphalt.
Hazelwood said each carport is 28 feet wide, 21 feet deep and would be able to house 6.2 vehicles. He said the fronts will always be open, and that at some point solar-powered lights will be put onto the front to keep the ports lit at night.
The carports were discussed to be placed at either the very back of the entire lot or just as people drive in on the right side, where the HCVS vehicles currently park.
David Daniels, a member of the board of commissioners, said it would be better if the carports were placed at the back of the lot.
An unnamed representative from HCVS said the carports would cut down on the maintenance costs of the vehicles because they wouldn’t be in the weather all the time. She also said that even though the carports will be separate buildings, they will be placed right next to each other so they look like one big building.
In other news, the Highland County Airport Authority President Bob Prosek attended the meeting and discussed multiple possible projects. He said the airport applied for a grant from the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) to completely replace its Automatic Weather System (AWS) 3. He said this system is used by pilots, put on the intent and people can also call in. Prosek said the last couple of years, the airport has had parts that needed to be reconditioned and then it got expensive to find some of the sensors.
He said ODOT approved the grant, and that if it’s accepted the matching price would be 5 percent. He said the unit itself is around $280,000, so the match would be a little bit less than $14,000.
“We think this is a good opportunity with just 5 percent matching funds,” Prosek said. “I mean, it’s a pretty good deal. We’d like to suggest that be added to our budget for next year.”
Prosek said another project that was discussed with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), which was the fence around the airport. He said the airport had a meeting with the FAA in 2020 to keep pushing the fence out and keep wildlife off the runway. He said it was put off because the airport didn’t want to go into any major grant for the next three years to build up its federal money.
Prosek said the airport gets $150,000 per year, which is used for grants. He said the fence project is $540,000 with a matching grant of 27,000. While it is not seen as critical and can be postponed for a couple of years if needed. Prosek said the $540,000 is all money the airport had built up, and it just needs a grant from the commissioners to use it.
Prosek said the airport had a grant approved for sealing of the taxiway and ramp as well as resurfacing and repairing of the taxiway and corners. He said because of COVID, it would most likely get started at the end of November. Prosek said it was “a little iffy” starting it at that time.
Jeff Duncan, commission president, agreed and said it’s iffy that time of year because “you can’t depend” on November weather.
Prosek saidd not in November, then project would start next March. He also said the question is if the matching funds could be carried to the next year’s budget, and that the match was $30,000. He said he doesn’t want to gamble on the weather and wanted to bring it up for discussion because if the weather goes bad, there would be “a lot of money” that went down the drain.
Daniels said he wouldn’t have a problem carrying the project over because the money was already approved.
In other news, Duncan said he was notified by the Solid Waste District that Weastec of Hillsboro was one of the 15 winners in the state of Environmental Excellence from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
“Congratulations to them for their environmental stewardship,” Duncan said. “It’s quite an honor.”
Duncan said the commissioners also conducted interviews for the assistant dog warden and had more resumes come in.
Reach Jacob Clary at 937-402-2570.