MIAMI — During their regular meeting Monday, the Ottawa County commissioners again discussed a proposed AT&T cell tower that the company wants to erect on property near the health department in Miami.
District 3 commissioner Russell Earls said information about the project is still being gathered. District 1 commissioner Mike Furnas said he has been in touch with the City of Miami and that the county should gather all the information they can.
District 2 commissioner Chad Masterson reported that he had received a call from the City of Miami that morning and was informed that where AT&T wants to put the tower is city property, not county, even though it is right next to the county health department.
The city requested that Masterson direct AT&T to contact them to discuss the proposal. Masterson said he thinks leasing the property would be a good thing for the county monetarily and that they will meet with county assessor Becky Smith to clarify whose jurisdiction the property is in.
In other matters, the board approved the donation of a 1985 Chevy pickup from the District 13 Drug Task Force to District 3 for use in pulling a trailer and equipment and/or materials to job sites, which had already been approved by District Attorney Kenny Wright.
The commissioners also discussed possible action concerning county procedures during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Masterson said he had seen the statistics on Ottawa County that morning and its numbers are still on the rise. He advised everyone to take precautions, including wearing masks and gloves, washing hands, and using hand sanitizer.
Emergency Management Director Chad Holcomb said an order for masks is expected in and then the county will be good on those. Gloves, however, are still needed. He also reported that the county was able to get a rechargeable ½-gallon fogger unit.
Earls asked if Holcomb foresees needing to supply PPE for any of the area tribes and, if so, does he think the county would have enough. Holcomb said if tribes need 100 to 200, it wouldn’t be a problem, but more than that might be.
During the commissioners’ activity reports, it was announced that county workers in District 1 have been able to help the City of Miami on a project to help improve the fairgrounds on the inside of the track, which they are hoping to finish up this week, according to Furnas, who commended county employees for doing the best they can to protect the citizens of Ottawa County during the pandemic.
Masterson said his district crew has been working with Earls and District 3 on a bridge on East 120 Road and that he “can’t thank the crew enough because it has come together so well that it’s going to be open within the next three weeks. And the project was just started July 6.”
The crew from District 3 consists of three or four people, not 15 or 20, but they “work like a well-oiled machine,” according to Masterson, who reported his crew is also hauling road materials, mowing right-of-ways, and performing routine maintenance.
The board also acknowledged and welcomed new county employee Nick McClure, who started working Monday for the courthouse security team.