An effort to better serve the public without increasing expenses was approved at this morning’s Kosciusko County Commissioners meeting.
The board signed a letter of agreement with GovTech Services Inc. for property tax billing. The company will pull the county’s tax billing files nightly. The information will then be provided to banks and lender and mortgage companies with a website with information to reference as to when property taxes are due.
There is no charge to the county, said treasurer Sue Ann Mitchell. Large commercial entities will pay a flat fee of 25 cents for each tax bill they pay through GovTech. The payment will be deposited into a separate bank account that will be used for all property tax payments. An agreement with a local bank was also approved for this purpose.
The company will do training sessions for the office staff as well as for local banks. Mitchell said the program is expected to help eliminate surplus issues when the taxpayer makes their payment, when the mortgage company was making the payment.
“They will become the clearing house for mortgage company payments,” Mitchell said.
She also said it will save the county in labor costs, as a part-time person was doing all the coding and updating in the spring and fall tax installments.
In highway news, a consulting contract for bridge inspections in the county was approved. The inspections are for bridges over 20 feet. There are 100 bridges in the county that over 20 feet.
The contract is with USI Consultants Inc., Indianapolis. Phase one will be done in 2014 and phase two will be done in 2016. The inspections are mandated by federal law and must be done every two years. The inspections will cost $124,897.66 and the county will pay $24,979.53 because the county gets an 80 percent reimbursement from the state.
An agreement to resurface CR 600 North at Old SR 15 in Leesburg was signed. Indiana Department of Transportation and Norfolk-Southern are upgrading the intersection’s railroad crossing. New side rails will be installed on the east side of the tracks and will be brought up to the level of the main rails. The county will be reimbursed just over $49,000 by INDOT for the road work. The railroad company will also install an active warning device at the railroad crossing.
The commissioners also signed an agreement with Cedarbridge Treatment Centers LLC, Carmel, for the county’s probation department to house young females. The treatment center provides a full continuum of services to at-risk adolescents. The cost is $99 a day for 1,000 days. The program is self-funded and Cedarbridge provides transportation so “it’s a win-win situation,” said Ron Robinson, county administrator.
Also, an ordinance for a stop sign at a railroad crossing at CR 1050 North, east of Old SR 15 in Milford, was approved.
In a final order of business, the county’s annual audit was signed as completed by the Indiana State Board of Accounts.
Commissioners are President Ron Truex, Bob Conley and Brad Jackson. The next meeting will be at 9 a.m. Tuesday, Sept. 10, at the county courthouse in Warsaw.