The Highland County Board of Commissioners approved a 10-year lease agreement for the Highland County Court in Greenfield at its Wednesday morning meeting.
Jeff Duncan, board president, said the last agreement was for 20 years and recently expired. He said the commissioners had conversations about renewing the contract like it was done 20 years ago where renovations were done to the courthouse and the county paid for that, which was then applied toward the lease of the building. He said the building needed new windows and the commissioners are looking at paying for them.
Commissioner David Daniels said the agreement would be an extension of around the same amount of money per square foot as the original contract, which was $6.60 per square foot. The court area in the Greenfield City Building is around 3,700 square feet and the entirety of the lease agreement is for just over $250,000. Daniels said the lease agreement helps the village out and maintains its capital infrastructure while it helps the commissioners by giving space for the Madison Township Court.
Gary Lewis, Greenfield financial director, said “We want to leave it better than what we got it in, and so this just goes forward into doing that.”
In other news, Duncan said when the new roof at the Hi-TEC Center was installed, new gutters were also placed. He said he had conversations with the maintenance people and learned about an annual problem where the gutters need to be cleaned because leaves got in them due to the trees around the building.
Duncan then said he talked to the construction company about installing leaf guard protection on the gutters. He said he got a quote that said the leaf guards would cost $4,750, which the board approved.
The Highland County Bar Association attended last week’s meeting of the commissioners to inquire about the indigent reimbursement fee and their request for it to be raised. The commissioners approved that raise during the meeting.
Commissioner Terry Britton said this is an increase from the previous fee of $56 per hour to $75 per hour that will go into effect on Nov. 1, 2021. He said the fee is 100 percent reimbursed from the state, but if that changes, so does the dollar amount.
Daniels said there are times when the fee isn’t 100 percent reimbursable, such as when paperwork is incomplete and delinquent. In those times, the fee must be reimbursed out of the county’s general funding budget.
In other news, the board approved a number of items.
One of them was the request last week for the renewal of a liquor license for which the commissioners did not have any correspondence one way or the other.
Another one was a performance bond from CORSA, the county’s liability insurance carrier, for underground storage tanks at the Highland County Airport. Duncan said this is usually done annually. Duncan said the final approval was held up because an artifact was found and forwarded onto the Ohio Archaeological Society. He said the artifact looks like a piece of flint.
In other news, there were three resolutions approved by the board of commissioners, including:
* Res No. 21-191 is an approval for an increase in the indigent reimbursement to $75 for in- and out-of-court cases effective Nov. 1, 2021.
* Res No. 21-192 is an authorization for a budget modification within Veterans Services in the amount of $33,500.
* Res No. 21-193 is an authorization for a budget modification within the engineer’s budget in the amount of $10,000.
There was also one contract approved by the board of commissioners It is a contract between the board of commissioners, the village of Greenfield and the Ohio Municipal Corporation for Highland County Court and its 10-year lease agreement.
Reach Jacob Clary at 937-402-2570.