By MARK EVANS
STE. GENEVIEVE HERALD
Southeast Services of Festus had the lower of two bids opened by the Ste. Genevieve County Commission last Thursday, to install a backup generator in the courthouse.
Southeast bid $45,356, while a local firm, B.T. Electric, bid $58,065.
Some concern was expressed because the Hazardous Mitigation Grant the county obtained is only for $40,000.
Presiding Commissioner Garry Nelson noted, however, that because prices have gone up on nearly everything since the bid was awarded, it is possible that it might be increased.
The generator has been a goal for some time. It would allow the courthouse to keep power in case of an outage caused by weather, terrorism or other reasons. This would insure election stability, would help protect county records and would keep the courthouse elevator in operation.
It had originally been thought that the emergency generator from the old Riverview at the Park nursing center might be salvaged when the facility was torn down in 2017. It turned out to be incompatible with the courthouse, however, leading to the perusal of the grant by Felix Meyer, county emergency management director, and Michele Gatzemeyer, associate county clerk.
ROAD WORK PROGRESSING
Scott Schmieder, county road and bridge foreman, reported that his crews were getting caught up on grading and other jobs and that all equipment seemed to be running properly.
He said he had dug out bad spots on Jackson School Road and had also been patching pot holes in paved roads.
He and the commissioners had put together a schedule on Tuesday, coordinating equipment and personnel to get work done. Right now the county has just one backhoe. A second one can be leased from Erb Equipment for $230 a month.
Upcoming projects include asphalting 6/10 to 7/10 of a mile of Blum Road and stretches of Cave Road and Saline Creek Road.
Meanwhile, a box culvert will be installed on Kocher Road, which should have it closed for two or three days.
Nelson reminded Schmieder to keep a close eye on his part-time summer help, who may not be used to working outside in the heat and humidity.
SEWER SITUATION STILL A CONCERN
Bob Kluender of the county health department came in to discuss the sewage draining onto properties at Lakes Genevieve, as well as into the lake itself.
The commissioners have expressed concern that the situation will become even more unbearable as the weather gets hotter.
Gatzemeyer told him that someone from the Missouri Division of Senior Services had suggest he take soil samples to check for contamination.
Kluender said he had been working with Prosecuting Attorney Wayne Williams and that he has filed and sent complaints.
He also suggested taking water samples in surrounding wells.
SERVER AREA GETTING TOO HOT
County Collector Claudia Stuppy expressed concern that the room where most of the courthouse servers for the computer system are located is getting too hot.
She said the ambient temperature is often 79-82 degrees and that the servers put out considerable heat themselves.
She also expressed concern about the security of a window unit being used in the room.
County employee Lee Scherer also told the commissioners he fears for the long-term life of the servers, noting that their lifespan drops with the amount of time they operate at too hot a temperature.
“A 10-year server becomes a 5-year server,” he said.