NEW CUMBERLAND - Hancock County could have a new 911 Dispatch Center by this time next year, county commissioners learned on Thursday.
Commissioners authorized paying $95,000 to L.R. Kimball architects, of Ebensburg, Pa., for the completion of bid-ready design drawings - preparing the way for the next phase of a project that has been in the planning stages for more than a year.
The drawings and equipment lists are about 90 percent complete and should be ready for the advertising of a bid package on April 4, said Thomas Zielinsky, executive director of the county's Office of Technology and Communication.
"We are down to the nitty-gritty," Zielinsky said. "We're in a really good position right now."
The new 911 Dispatch Center will share space with the Office of Emergency Management in a single-story building to be built on county-owned land on state Route 2 - across the street from the John D. Rockefeller IV Career Center.
It will be part of a two-building complex that will include a new home for the Hancock County Health Department. All three agencies currently occupy cramped quarters in downtown New Cumberland.
Commissioners also agreed to pay L.R. Kimball a fixed fee of $5,000 for a water line extension survey and design, and $1,500 to $1,800 for additional site visits by the construction administrator or engineer.
Zielinsky said if all goes according to schedule, the buildings should be "under roof" by late summer or early fall and ready to be occupied by early 2014.
Also Thursday, county commissioners:
* Agreed to advertise for bids for the purchase of the visitor's bleachers at the old Jimmy Carey Stadium in Weirton, one of two stadium properties bought by commissioners from Hancock County Schools late last year.
Commissioners set a minimum price of $15,000 and a bid deadline of noon March 28. Whoever has the winning bid must have the bleachers removed by May 31, Commissioner Dan Greathouse said.
Commissioners are considering selling other portions of the stadiums, including Newell Memorial Field, in the same way - through sealed bids. "We've had other inquiries about scoreboards and other stands," he said.
The Buckeye Local school district in Jefferson County has expressed an interest in the bleachers at Newell Memorial Field. Greathouse said commissioners will do walk-throughs with other prospective buyers to see what equipment they are interested in and how much they would be willing to spend.
Some of the material also may be hauled away and sold for scrap.
* Pledged $30,000 in matching money for the Business Development Corporation of the Northern Panhandle, which is applying for a grant from the West Virginia Development Office.
* Pledged $7,500 toward the stocking of Tomlinson Run and Kings Creek with trout this spring. The money will come from hotel occupancy tax revenue that is earmarked for recreation purposes. Total cost of the stocking event is $15,000.
* Adopted a drug screening policy for all new county employees.
* Hired Jason Miller as a full-time dispatcher at the 911 Dispatch Center. Miller previously was a part-time dispatcher.
* Hired Jack Wood as an assistant Hancock County prosecutor at an annual salary of $70,000 and accepted the resignation of assistant Prosecutor Marcy Grishkevich, who is taking other employment.