11/06/12 The Marshall County Commissioners had a presentation from Bruce Carter Associates, environmental consultants, on a Brownfield Grant opportunity during their meeting Monday.  Joe Markland explained what a brownfield site is. They are abandoned or underused industrial and commercial facilities that may be complicated by real or perceived environmental contaminations.

Bruce Carter has been working with the City of Plymouth and the Town of Bourbon along with Marshall County to join a coalition in applying for up to $600,000 in an assessment grant. It successful the funds would be used to inventory an estimated 50 to 60 potential brownfield properties.  Those sites would be narrowed down to 15 to 20 for phase I assessments and 6 to 12 phase II assessments.

The City will take the lead on the grant application but each governing body will determine which projects they want to consider.  Although Bruce Carter Assoc. is willing to help with the application process at no cost because if the grant is successful Bruce Carter would hope to be successful in the competitive bid process to be the consultant for the Brownfield assessment.

County Plan Director Ralph Booker brought forth the tabled request of Plymouth for free use of the County’s GIS data for updating the Comprehensive Plan.  At their last meeting the Commissioners tabled the request since the city’s vendor was the one for asked for a list of data rather than the city.

In 2008 the County passed a fee structure for companies seeking to use the county’s data although they were willing to work with other governing agencies.  The county attorney presented a draft agreement between the two with the liability on the shoulders of the city if their vendor uses the data for other than the Comprehensive plan.

In other business Booker said he had been asked by the City to serve as their Plan Consultant on a part time basis.  He noted that both Bill Neal and Troy Keifer had served both governing bodies in the past.  He presented a portion of the County’s personal police on outside employment and conflict of interest.  Ralph indicated that he would only do city business before 8 a.m. or after 4 p.m. and possibly on his lunch break.

Commissioner Kevin Overmyer asked Booker how he would handle a dispute between the city and county.  Booker said, “I don’t make decisions, only recommendations.”

Although the County BZA and Plan Commission both approved him taking on the part-time position, the Plan Commission suggested combining the two positions into one in the future.

Commissioner Jack Roose said, “I’m afraid it would be a disservice to the people of Plymouth if you couldn’t respond to their request during the day.”  He continued, “I think a memorandum of understanding would be possible.

Overmyer also said, “There is such scrutiny of office holders, I’d be afraid of ghost employment.  Officials have to be very careful of what we do.”  He continued, “There could be a conflict of interest.”

After additional discussion it was suggested that a commissioner, a county council member, the mayor, city council representative, the two attorneys and Booker meet to create a workable agreement.