DANVILLE — Montour County has been awarded a $88,600 grant for new county radios, Commission Chairman Ken Holdren announced.
"I am thrilled. We were told initially it would be in the $24,000 range," he said at Tuesday's commissioners meeting.
The money will come from the U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development Grant Program.
Including the grant, the county will have more than $470,000 to buy radios, he said. If the county reaches its goal of $600,000, it can fully fund radios for county personnel and for fire companies, he said.
"We're getting close," he said.
The commissioners approved paperwork for the grant, which included a request for obligation of funds, a grant letter of intent, a grant agreement and a vendor payment enrollment form.
Holdren thanked U.S. Rep. Dan Meuser, R-9 of Dallas, for his help in the county being awarded the grant.
Renovation project bids postponed
Holdren also announced the county postponed opening bids for county renovation projects from Tuesday to 1 p.m. Feb. 20 in the courthouse. Following a meeting with the architect and bidders, an alternative approach was discussed about air conditioning, he said, to give bidders more time "to sharpen their pencils" hopefully in favor of the county.
The commissioners also reallocated leftover Community Development Block Grant funds from 2016. They approved $10,238 from private sewer laterals in Cooper Township and $6,830 from a jail annex project for handicapped accessibility work at the Anthony Township pool and $4,436 from the jail work for beautification work along Mill Street in Danville.
New task force
Board members also approved a cost recovery agreement with Northumberland County for the 911 center in Bloomsburg to handle calls in Riverside and Rush Township in Northumberland County. The cost is $33,000 for the first year.
Commissioner Trevor Finn said the task force the county was in has dissolved and the North Central Task Force "has agreed to take Montour under its wing." The commissioners approved an intergovernmental cooperation agreement and mutual aid agreement for the new task force.
In other business, commissioners:
Reappointed Al Neuner to the DRIVE board for a second three-year term and appointed DRIVE board Chairman Dennis Hummer to his first full term. He had filled an unexpired term.
Accepted the resignation of Sara Prieto on the county housing authority board and as clerk-typist in the human services department, effective Feb. 28 after 19 years. Finn thanked her for her dedicated service, saying she "always was very dependable and a fantastic employee." He said she will better herself by leaving the county's employment. The county will send her a letter thanking her for her service and for volunteering on the housing authority board.
County Solicitor Michael Dennehy announced that a secretary in his law firm, Eleanor Gardner, will retire at the end of the month after 61 years. She began working there Feb. 9, 1959. Most recently, she worked on a tax anticipation note for the county. The commissioners commended her for her service and wished her well. "She will stay busy," Dennehy said.
"We wish her all the best," Holdren said.
Holdren also introduced Jeremy Brown, the new 911 center director, who has worked at the center since 2009 as a deputy director for three years.