County commissioners approve partnership with Ohio State


By Abigail Miller



GREENVILLE — The Darke County Board of Commissioners met Monday afternoon to discuss a water pump replacement at the county jail, an agricultural partnership with The Ohio State University, and repairs to the courthouse steps. Commissioners Matt Aultman and Larry Holmes were present. Commissioner Mike Stegall was absent.

The board approved Resolution (R-109-2021), to replace the chilled water pump for the air conditioning system at the county jail. Rick Lee, Darke County Facilities and Safety Manager, said the current water pump failed and without the motion there would be no air conditioning.

Comfort Systems USA is to complete the project. The presented price quote is $9,497.

Next, the board approved an Intergovernmental Agreement between Darke County and The Ohio State University which allows the university to use 88 acres of land for agricultural research from Feb. 1, 2021 to Dec. 31, 2025. The agreement requires Ohio State to pay the county $17,160 per year in exchange for providing a learning lab for current and future Ohio State students. The farm, located in Greenville on Darke County Home Road, also provides the community with valuable agricultural research and attracts new people to the area, commissioners said.

The board started discussing the collaboration with Ohio State last fall and said they’re still discussing a second, smaller farm in Ansonia with the university that would be a second part of the agreement.

Commissioner Larry Holmes said he was happy to see more collaborations in the community.

“I’m glad to see the education component of this is a partnership,” he said. “We have partnerships with Ohio State, we have partnerships with Edison State, it’s all part of being a community so I’m pleased to see this.”

Earlier in the meeting, Taylor Dill, agriculture educator at The Ohio State University Extension, updated the commissioners on the work she’s doing at the extension. Dill said she is currently making first contact with farmers in the county, and meets with about four farmers a week. She also noted she has all of the summer research planned.

In addition to the water pump quote, Rick Lee presented price quotes for repairs of the walls and steps of the courthouse. Lee explained the current steps have major wear and tear, including cracks and should be replaced. The total price quote for the project with all of the options is $26,000. The motion was approved. Wysong Plastering is to complete the project this summer.

The Darke County Board of Commissioners meet every Monday and Wednesday at the county administrative office located at 520 S. Broadway in Greenville. For more information, contact the commissioner’s office at 937-547-7370.

By Abigail Miller