Court approves purchase of sheriff vehicle

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By John Shindlebower

The Spencer County Fiscal Court Monday moved ahead with approval to purchase a software package for administrative offices, and a 2020 Ford Explorer for the sheriff’s office. The software, along with service plan and contract was purchased for nearly $40,000, while the vehicle, along with striping and emergency package equipment, totaled nearly $42,000.
The court did not take action on a request made earlier in the year on purchasing new voting machines, despite the request being repeated by Election Board Member Steve Hesselbrock.
Hesselbrock’s wife, Spencer County Clerk Lynn Hesselbrock, made the recommendation a few months ago, but Judge-Executive John Riley explained that it was not framed as an immediate need, but something on the horizon that could be a year or two out.
However, Steve Hesselbrock noted that the voting machines are nearing the end of their expected lifespan and that there have been issues with at least one machine in each of the last two elections, including the most recent May Primary.
“We’ve had two situations. The machines are old and getting near the end of their practical lives,” said Hesselbrock. “This is, I feel, a very, very big issue. It’s coming and I hope there’s a way to find money in the budget.” He noted that another issue would be to ensure proper temperature-controlled storage space for the machines.
In February, Lynn Hesselbrock raised the issue of the voting machines, and had a representative of HARP Enterprises give a presentation to the court. It was estimated that new voting machines for Spencer County could run around $180,000.
In other action Monday, the court:
• Approved Tire Amnesty, which will be held on June 14 from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. at the county road department at 843 Fairground Road.
• Passed a resolution to officially name the baseball fields at Ray Jewell Park in honor of Jackson Bayers. Bayers was the toddler son of former Spencer County Magistrate Brian Bayers and his wife, Amanda, who was killed in a tragic vehicle accident at his home in 2015. His parents began raising money to help promote youth recreation in the county, and those funds helped the Spencer County Youth Baseball Association match the grant for lighting that is currently being installed now. The baseball fields will now be known as Jackson Fields.
• Approved the first reading of an ordinance accepting Elk Chase Court, Elk Chase Drive and Running Creek Court into the county road system.