County looks to redo employee manual soon

Tuesday, January 17, 2017
Rick Woodall

Weighing in at more than 100 pages long, the Putnam County employee handbook is a bit too voluminous, at least in the opinion of one county commissioner.

“It’s 100-some pages and I think that’s insane,” District 2 Commissioner Rick Woodall said Monday during the commissioners’ bi-monthly meeting.

Woodall said he and David Berry recently spoke to a Fountain County commissioner who said if the county had overhauled its handbook three months sooner, it would have saved the county a $25,000 lawsuit.

Woodall was nominated to speak to companies about doing the job. He hopes to have it done within six weeks.

The commissioners approved another change that could have serious cost saving implications for the county down the line, changing the property and casualty insurance carrier.

Under old carrier Cincinnati Insurance, the county’s premium was set to go up for the year by $12,795 to a total of $444,974.

Rick Bittles of HBG Insurance recommended that the county switch to Chubb Limited, which will up the county’s premium slightly, but increase the coverage level greatly.

For a price of $445,419, the county’s liability will increase from $3 million to $5 million while also adding $1 million in syber liability.

The measure passed unanimously.

In other business:

• Sheriff Scott Stockton was at the meeting to publicly thank Commissioner David Berry for his work on expediting the purchase of four new police vehicles that the county took possession of on Tuesday.

“We are in dire straits as far as getting cars that are operational,” Stockton said. “If it weren’t for Mr. Berry, I don’t know what we would be doing.”

The sheriff’s department fleet has been seriously depleted in recent weeks and months by crashes and mechanical problems.

• County highway supervisor Mike Ricketts reported that Bridge 110 on County Road 525 West over Leatherman Creek is nearing completion.

Crews were setting beams on the Madison Township bridge last week. Ricketts estimated that job would be completed this week, followed by the floor.

Ricketts said the bridge should be open late this week or early next week.

• Courthouse trash cans will be permanently moved to the east side of the building.

Head custodian Brian Smith reported that the cans had temporarily been moved from the south side to the east to accommodate limestone work being performed on the building. Workers from the trash contractor decided they liked the cans being on the east side, with its wheelchair ramps.

Smith estimated that for $450-$500, a concrete pad could be installed and shrubs planted to shield the cans.

Sheriff Stockton offered the use of jail trustees, which would reduce the county cost further.

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