The Clay County Commissioners are continuing their effort to repair bridges which may be unsafe.
During Tuesday's special meeting, the Commissioners opened quotes to replace Bridge No. 95, which is located on County Road 100 East between CR 600 and 700 N.
Brown's Land Improvement, Inc., Staunton was awarded the work with the lowest quote ($51,000) for the replacement of the bridge, which sits over Birch Creek. BLS Contractors, Bowling Green ($57,300), Blackfoot Construction, Inc., Poland ($59,950), and L & B Construction, Brazil ($61,154.75) also submitted quotes for consideration.
Commissioners' President Charlie Brown told The Brazil Times he would like to see other area contractors submit quotes in the future, but the county does not have the funds to advertise every time they have work to be done.
"Unlike the bid process, we do not have to advertise in cases we are requesting quotes, even though we do have to solicit for at least three submissions," he said. "There are 12 or 13 companies in the area with as much chance to be awarded work, and with articles about our meetings in the newspaper, I would like to see them put in quotes as well."
While the Commissioners awarded the work to Brown's Land Improvement, it came with the stipulation that work would not begin until warmer weather comes.
"Concrete should not be poured in freezing temperatures," Commissioner Paul Sinders said. "I understand there are mixes that may hold up well in cold weather, we want to make sure the bridge is constructed under circumstances where we are most confident it would best suit the residents of Clay County."
The Commissioners also signed a five-year lease contract with a company that could provide added revenue to the county.
Ted Carney, notary public with Piper Services Corp., Marengo, Ind., presented a proposal in which his company will be drilling to find potential oil and gas within the county.
Carney told the Commissioners he brought the proposal to them because in the area where drilling is planned, the county owns one-half interest of the mineral rights on a total of 161 acres which were acquired through the non-payment of delinquent property taxes.
As part of the contract, the county will be receiving a one-time bonus of $1,610 and will be privy to a proportional rate of a 12.5 percent royalty during the life of the wells.
Carney explained the drilling sections are split up into 40-acre areas and the royalties will be split up based on the amount of land in the sections owned by those with mineral rights.
While the contract is for five years, there is an option to renew for an additional five years should drilling work continue past the initial length of the deal.
In other business, the Commissioners also approved the hiring of Mike Holland as the new Veterans Service Officer for the county.
Holland was chosen out of three applicants to fill the position which was left open after the passing of Les Walden in December.
The next regular meeting of the Clay County Commissioners will be Monday, Feb. 2, at 9 a.m., in the Commissioners' Courtroom at the Clay County Courthouse.