Commissioners talk shelter fees, rural internet

By Meladi Brewer

DailyAdvocate.com

GREENVILLE — The Darke County Board of Commissioners met Monday afternoon to discuss the animal shelter, rural broadband, and Pitsburg. Commissioners Larry Holmes, Matt Aultman, and Mike Stegall were present.

The board approved resolution (R-263-2021), in order to fix the 2022 Darke County Dog License fees at the Animal Shelter to cover costs in the department.

New License Fees include: one year – $18, three years – $54, and permanent license fee – $180.

At the start of the pandemic, all licenses were put on hold until July 1, 2021 per Gov. Dewine’s orders. Meaning penalties on licenses could not be enforced causing the shelter to lose roughly $40,000 in revenue.

The price increases will enable the shelter to make up for its losses by next year, as they are currently the only shelter still taking in dogs. Costs at the shelter have not been raised since 2014 and Commissioner Stegall believes this adjustment is modest for a facility that has been deemed the best in the state.

The commissioners have settled on an Intergovernmental Agreement between Darke County and the Village of Pitsburg. This agreement will allow Darke County to pay for the resolution of the unsound building located in the 200 block on N. Jefferson Street.

The building in question is leaning approximately six to eight inches into the neighbors house and is considered unsafe, but they themselves do not have the finances to raze the building themselves. The county is agreeing to pay for the expenses while the village agrees to pay any tax proceeds collected to the county to pay for the cost of razing the structure.

Lastly, the Darke County Commissioners approved resolution (R-264-2021), to submit an agreement and letters of support for an application to the National Telecommunications Information Administration in order to apply for funding for the expansion of rural internet services in Darke County.

The commissioners understand rural internet has been an issue for some time, but with the increased number of citizens working from home due to the pandemic, the issue was pushed to the top of the list of priorities. Due to this understanding they are working with Spectrum to fill out an application to submit for a grant.

“We have looked at this very hard and want to make sure we’re doing the right thing,” Stegall said.

The Darke County Board of Commissioners holds regular sessions every Monday and Wednesday at 1:30 p.m. at 520 South Broadway, Greenville, Ohio 45331. For more information contact the commissioner’s office at 937-547-7370.

To contact Daily Advocate Reporter Meladi Brewer, email [email protected]