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by Patty Cheffey
The Marion County Commission approved a study on the Marion County Jail in preparation for future roof work.
The commissioners also heard a presentation from Preferred Family Healthcare and discussed storage options for the courthouses.
A mechanical, electrical plumbing study to be conducted by Poepping, Stone, Bach and Associates at a cost of $9,000 will be used to show present and future costs for those items currently on use on the jail roof.
In addition, the study will show any issues with the current system and what might need to be replaced now or in the near future prior to a new roof being installed or the current roof being repaired on the jail.
While hesitating to spend that amount of money on a study, stating “they will find something,” Larry Welch, Eastern District commissioner, however, made it unanimous to Western District Commissioner Steve Begley’s motion.
“If we are going to do it, we might as well take care of it all,” said Begley in making the motion, noting the commissioners do not have the knowledge to do the study themselves.
In other business, Whitney Thompson with Preferred Family Healthcare, was present to give a report on the services being offered through the Show Me Hope program.
Those mental health programs include managing COVID anxiety, quarantine and isolation, crisis counseling programs, back to school planning and mental health checklist and mental help for senior citizens.
Thompson also asked the commissioners to help distribute flyers about the group’s services.
The Preferred Family Healthcare works in several counties in Missouri, Thompson said, including Marion, Ralls, Schulyer, Scotland, Shelby, Clark, Lewis and Knox.
The commissioners also learned AT&T might be willing to rent space in their building near the Hannibal Courthouse, or work out some other arrangement, but Teya Stice, county improvement coordinator, said she would not know anything for certain until after the first of the year.
However, after discussing another option on Willow Street in Hannibal, County Clerk Valerie Dornberger suggested the county consider building a Morton type building on property near the jail and County Highway Department.
It was noted that by doing so, the county should have enough storage for the foreseeable future.
In addition, the building would be in a mostly gated area so traffic would be limited.
After further discussion, Begley said he and Mike Schaefer, county highway supervisor, would look into measuring what space might be available as well as costs for that project.
In her report, Stice also noted a preconstruction hearing is set for Dec. 6 at the Palmyra Courthouse for the County Road 402 bridge project.
She also reported Bernard Elevator Company is increasing it’s maintenance rates by 5 percent for the elevators in the two courthouses.
Cost for the Palmyra Courthouse will be $148.13 a month, and cost for the Hannibal Courthouse will be $296.93 a month.