Piatt County Maintenance Supervisor Doug Winder told a committee on Aug. 7 that a $7,800 investment in lighting at the county courthouse in Monticello would pay for itself in about 19 months.

The plan would be to replace the current fluorescent bulbs with more energy-efficient LED ones.

Existing fixtures could be retrofitted, and would need just half the number of bulbs that are currently in use.

We would go from 1,000 bulbs to around 500,” Winder told the building and grounds committee. He added the LEDs will also “reduce the wattage quite a bit,” resulting in additional savings.

While the county is tight on funds, the request could be part of budget talks this month as the county drafts its 2019-20 financial document.

Committee members were also informed that a long-discussed resurfacing of the mental health center/Piatt County Transportation (PIATTRAN) parking lot is a go after a $29,465 contract was approved for Duce Construction.

PIATTRAN Director Jamie Trybom said the cost is $20,000 less than initial estimates, and proposed adding parking sometime in the future, possibly to the west of her building.

We are running out of parking, definitely,” she said. An increase in clients at the mental health center have also put strain on the number of available parking places.

County Engineer Eric Seibring said the positive is that the county owns the acreage that could serve as additional parking. The negative, he said, is that it would likely pave over water and sewer utilities.

No decision was made on the possibility of adding to the parking lot.

Water bill

Committee member Bob Murrell questioned whether the $1,886 bill for the Piatt County Office Building was higher than usual.

Winder said he was not sure, but would keep an eye on it.

The connected nursing home uses water for its laundry room, which is located in the PCOB. But Nursing Home Director Scott Porter told his committee last month that they are currently billed $3,600 monthly for water used in the office building.

Building and grounds committee members discussed expanding the use of the computer-based work order system that was installed last year. Winder said he likes it because it helps in record keeping.

County Board Chairman Ray Spencer said he would send out an email reminding county workers to place work orders through the software/e-mail based system.