Greene County has moved a step closer to having an official website.
The commissioners agreed Monday to proceed with a proposal from eGov Strategies, of Indianapolis, to develop a website. Before final approval for work to begin can be made, the commissioners must obtain a funding commitment from the Greene County Council at its meeting Jan. 28.
Under terms of the three-year contract, the cost of the set-up and launching of the website will be $15,575, followed by an annual maintenance and web hosting fee of $3,115 starting in 2014, according to eGov Business Development Manager David Russ.
County Assessor Willard Neill has agreed to pay for the set-up costs out of his Reassessment Fund with the county council to be asked to be responsible for the annual fee.
Russ explained that among the services which could be offered online are credit card payments for tax bills or permits, court fines; citizen feedback and issue resolution; information about road and bridge closings; community information; a calendar of events; mapping using the WTH Technologies ThinkMap system that is utilized by the county; and posting of agendas and minutes for county government meetings.
The site will also be capable of dispatching SMS text messages to email addresses with special announcements.
Each individual department will have a page link on the site to fully explain their operations, business hours, and answer questions. Most of the money transactions of the individual offices will be able to be done online.
Russ said his company currently does websites for 65 communities in the state ---- including 11 counties.
The site features what he called a "user-friendly" maintenance platform that can even be updated from a smartphone.
If funding is obtained from the county council, a three-person local committee would be appointed to oversee the initial website launch.
Russ said the site could be set up and online in about five months.
Commissioner's President Rick Graves said he wants to move forward with the project and seek county council funding.
He sees many advantages to the website and said, "The courthouse will never be closed with this."
Commissioner Nathan Abrams agreed it's time to move on this project.
"I think we definitely, definitely need a website to keep people informed. I think it will be a great tool for the county," Abrams commented. "I think it will increase public involvement."
Commissioner Ed Michael concurred and said the website is a good thing.
"I think we need it. In this day and age we're going to have to try and get used to this kind of a thing. It's good for the taxpayers and a savings to the officeholders I think," Michael said.
The commissioners also made several other appointments to a variety of boards, including:
* Plan Commission -- Otto Prow and Garry Heshelman; four-year appointments.
* Alcohol Beverage Board ---- David Rollison; annual appointment.
* Health Insurance Board ---- Willard Neill; length of elected term appointment.
* South Central Region Workforce Board ---- Gene Hall, term until June 30, 2015.
* Common Construction Wage Committee ---- Ed Guthrie, Lou Massette, and Bryan Kollmeyer.
* Greene County Solid Waste Management District Board -- Roy Terrell; annual appointment.
* Economic Development Commission ---- David Sisk, city of Linton appointee.
The commissioners are still seeking someone to appoint to the county Community Corrections Board. The vacancy came when Michael won a seat on the Greene County Commissioners.
The commissioners were pleased to learn from Charles Malinowski, with MalCom, Inc., of Indianapolis, that about $82,000 will be reimbursed to the county General Fund as part of an IV-Child Support Cost Allocation Plan conducted for the county by his firm.
The first of quarterly reimbursement payment will amount to about $20,000.
The commissioners also:
* Received an annual reports from the Greene County Redevelopment Commission and from Greene County Auditor Matt Baker.
* Approved a service agreement for the MicroVote system used in the clerk's office.
* Approved a road bond amendment with Gohmann Construction Company for I-69 related work.
* Approved a parcel maintenance contract with WTH Technologies, of Indianapolis.
* Heard an update on I-69 construction progress in the eastern part of the county from Indiana Department of Transportation construction manager Brian Malone.