Commissioners discuss BOE building and equipment

By Kelsey Kimbler -

EATON — The Preble County Board of Commissioners is considering Preble County Board of Election’s request to move to a new location.

During a meeting on Monday, April 8,the Board of Elections proposed the Kramer Auctioneer building on North Barron Street as a possible new location.

BOE officials have already spoken with owner John Kramer regarding the cost of rent, utilities, and a list of what he would do. According to Director Terri Hans, rent for the Kramer Building would be $23,000 a year.

The BOE has also looked into the cost of construction, which is estimated at $28,000 including $14,000 in flooring. Hans added, the flooring cost is negotiable.

The lease term with John Kramer would be on a two year basis, with additional two year renewals.

“We really have to move out of here. We have no room in the basement, with this new equipment, and it is not climate controlled. Voting out here is like election day when you come in for early voting. We can’t do early voting out there, it is too hard,” Hans said.

“If we were to do the construction, we’re renting the building at $23,00 a year — if you put $18,000, at the end of two years, then we just eat that $18,000,” Commissioner Rodney Creech said.

Hans responded, they hope to be there for more than two years.

Commissioner Denise Robertson recommended they get quotes for the construction.

The BOE asked the commissioners for an answer by May 1.

The board also discussed new voting equipment. The State of Ohio allowed the BOE $577,725.07 for equipment. It is using $532,658.75 through Election Systems and Software. That leaves a balance of $45,066.32 the BOE is allowed to use for any state-approved equipment in the next several years.

The State of Ohio will be funding the following equipment: a DS450 scanner and tabulator, 45 Express Vote Ballot Marking Devices, 37 DS200 scanners, year one of elections software, two ballot printers, testing, 45 privacy shields for the Express Votes, encrypted thumb drives, and two desktop monitors.

The BOE will have to fund training and 37 DS200 tote bins, for a total of $18,100. However, the BOE budgeted $19,600 for maintenance this year. That money will be used for the equipment and services the State of Ohio will not fund.

According to Hans, this plan now must be submitted to the State of Ohio. Once the state approves the plan, the commissioners have to complete a resolution to accept it.

By Kelsey Kimbler

Reach Kelsey Kimbler at 937-683-4061 or on Twitter @KKimbler_RH

Reach Kelsey Kimbler at 937-683-4061 or on Twitter @KKimbler_RH