Buford project moves forward


County looking into family’s CHIP Grant program issues

By Jacob Clary - [email protected]



Highland County commissioners (l-r) David Daniels, Jeff Duncan and Terry Britton are pictured during their weekly Wednesday meeting.

Highland County commissioners (l-r) David Daniels, Jeff Duncan and Terry Britton are pictured during their weekly Wednesday meeting.


Jacob Clary | The Times-Gazette

The Buford school demolition project is prepared to move forward, commissioner Terry Britton said at Wednesday’s meeting of the Highland County Board of Commissioners.

Britton said he spoke to McCarty Associates, Inc. this week and that they said the bid packets for the project were due to be delivered to the board of commissioners by April 22. Britton said McCarty Associates told him that they were on schedule for that delivery date and they’d hopefully get it to the commissioners by then. Britton, however, said that when the packets were delivered, the board of commissioners will need to add a couple things to them, and following that, they will be ready to go out for bid.

In other news, Highland County Engineer Christopher Fauber said they were going to update the Roadway Use Maintenance Agreement (RUMA) with New Market 1 and New Market 2. He said they were going to add mileage to some of the roads that weren’t part of the original RUMA. Fauber also said there was also a bond that would be updated to increase its amount.

After questioning by the commissioners, Fauber said these were mainly additions to existing roads already on the RUMA. He said they felt they were driving more on some of those roads than they thought or taking different routes, so they were added.

On another issue, commissioner Jeff Duncan said that there was a “bit of an issue” at the old jail where a piece of stone came loose. He said a local contractors came in and looked at it, but that Duncan wasn’t able to talk to them yet about what they’d need to do to remedy that situation. However, Duncan said there would probably need to be work done to correct the problem.

In other news, Nicholas Beatty, vice president of employee benefits at Assured Partners, attended meeting to inquire about the office’s health insurance and its renewal. Britton said that the board of commissioners currently has a year remaining on its two-year deal with Medical Mutual and wouldn’t start negotiations with other organizations.

Commissioner Dave Daniels said that the renewal “usually” comes up in August and they would talk about it around this time next year.

“I think that we’ve always valued being able to offer the insurance benefit to the county employees that we’ve been able to offer,” Daniels said. “Obviously, as you look at what we offer the employees in our benefits package, this is one of the things that helps us retain some of the people that we’ve got. Insurance is a pretty important part of the benefit package here.”

Duncan also said that the office was in the process of switching its record keeping system from its current system to another. He said the new system was planned to go live on May 6.

Britton said he went to speak to the Laffertys, the family that spoke at last week’s board of commissioners meeting about damage to their home after a CHIP Grant improvements were completed. He said that Mark Current, Highland County Community Action Organization housing director, and his group were reviewing everything the family said and seeing what they can do to help the situation.

Britton said, however, that the situation was an old one with the work was done in 2018-19, so the family ran out of its warranty time. He said if it was a problem “they should have brought it up then.” However, Britton also said Current was going to work with them to see if there was something they could do.

In other news, there were two resolutions approved by the board of commissioners:

* Res. No. 22-67 is an authorization for a reimbursement request for funds from the Child Support Enforcement Fund to Public Assistance in the amount of $24,131 for January 2022 to March 2022 shared cost reimbursement.

* Res. No. 22-68 is a request to establish new line items within County General and Non-General funds due to a countywide software upgrade.

There were also two contracts approved by the commissioners:

*Contract 30 is between the board of commissioners and the Highland County Engineer for the First Amendment to the Roadway Use, Repair and Maintenance Agreement.

*Contract 31 is between the board of commissioners, CSEA and the prosecutor for a child support contract from April 1, 2022, to March 31, 2023.

Reach Jacob Clary at 937-402-2570.

Highland County commissioners (l-r) David Daniels, Jeff Duncan and Terry Britton are pictured during their weekly Wednesday meeting.
https://www.timesgazette.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/33/2022/04/web1_DSC_0824.jpgHighland County commissioners (l-r) David Daniels, Jeff Duncan and Terry Britton are pictured during their weekly Wednesday meeting. Jacob Clary | The Times-Gazette
County looking into family’s CHIP Grant program issues

By Jacob Clary

[email protected]