Marshall County digital app 11-4-2020Citizens in Marshall County will soon have a variety of resources available at their fingertips with a mobile app device.

Commissioner Stan Klotz received a phone call a few weeks ago about a $100,000 grant Marshall County was eligible for.  Emergency Management Director Clyde Avery looked into the opportunity for the county and found that it was through the Indiana Criminal Justice Institute for COVID-19 expense.

During Monday’s Commissioner meeting Avery and Ward Byers, Director of Community Corrections told the board $103,662.50 is available to the county and they were working on an app for mobile devices that would show resources to citizens and laptops for working remotely.

Byers told the commissioners the app would give resources to citizens such as testing sites for COVID-19, locations of the mobile medical RV, updates on immunization and vaccines through the County Health Department.

The app could provide “push notifications” for a variety of emergencies such as road work and road closures and weather related situations like trees down, flooding and snow emergencies.  Byers said they are working with United Way of Marshall County.  They would have a button on the app that would give citizens a “plethora of resources available in MarshallC County,” Byers said.

EMA Director Avery told the commissioners the new app would meet one of the corrective actions designated in the COVID-19 improvement play with getting immediate information on the pandemic out and assist emergency responders with resources for victims of various disasters.

The grant will cover development cost of the app and the first year of maintenance cost.

The commissioners were not in favor of using the grant money for working remotely if the pandemic increases again.  The grant would cover take home laptops for court employees, the probation department and probation department.  The County Council recently denied all requests for additional appropriations related to the work at home process until a policy can be created and cyber-security can be curtailed.

The pair will work to find other criminal justice needs the grant could cover.

The Marshall County Commissioners approved the request for the grant.

Photo by Ward Byers