County seeks antenna inspection

BRENT ADDLEMAN Managing Editor
Somervell County Judge Danny Chamber, left, along with commissioners John Curtis, second from left, and Larry Hulsey, second from right, listen as Dwayne Griffin gives a presentation. At right is County and District Clerk Michelle Reynolds.

With the recent inclement weather dropping snow and ice on Somervell County, the communications tower on Chalk Mountain did not fail. However, the tower needs to undergo an inspection.

Dwayne Griffin, emergency management coordinator, presented the Somervell County Commissioners Court with the current specifics of the inspecting during Monday’s regularly scheduled meeting at the Courthouse Annex.

Griffin informed the court that a month ago a tower crew went to the Chalk Mountain tower to perform maintenance, but the crew deemed the tower unsafe and would not climb the structure until the county had it inspected.

“I received an estimate from DFW Communications for a tower inspection and a structural analysis for $3,642.86,” Griffin said, “and I thought that was expensive.”

Griffin then sought a bid from Estes Communications.

“He will come out and do a visual inspection for $1,100,” Griffin said to the commissioners. “If you want a six-page documented inspection, it is $1,500. But it does not include a structural analysis.”

Griffin also informed the court that the engineering standards for antennas changes, and with the Chalk Mountain tower falling into a one-inch ice zone location, the tower as it was constructed does not meet the criteria to pass a structural analysis inspection.

“It is quite apparent from this last storm, we have over an inch of ice on the tower, and it did not fail,” Griffin said. “However, due to the new engineering standards it will fail. I highly recommend not doing a structural analysis on the tower. I do recommend doing the six-page documented inspection.”

The commissioner’s court unanimously approved Estes Communications to perform the needed inspection.

In other news:

• The Commissioners Court read a proclamation for the Somervell County Cancer Support group stating Monday, Feb. 2 was Cancer Support Awareness Day.

According to Danny Chambers, county judge, since 2011, the organization has provided $30,000 in aid to those undergoing treatment for cancer, including gas cards and help with prescriptions, food and lodging when staying out of town for treatments. The majority of funds have been expended at local businesses. In addition, the organization has helped with small medical bills, medical equipment and repairs of medical equipment and medical supplies.

The motion was approved unanimously.

• The court unanimously approved transferring unclaimed credits held by the comptroller to the Paluxy River Children’s Advocacy Center from electrical cooperations. The funds will help Paluxy River Children’s Advocacy Center fund its programs.

• Approved County and District Clerk Michelle Reynolds access to the Texas Vital Statistics organization website.

• Approved revising sick leave pool policy so that if someone does not use their sick time they get 24 hours of bonus time.

• Entered into a memorandum of understanding with Hood County for emergency alerts pertaining to Comanche Peak Nuclear Power Plant. Emergency messages would be sent as joint messages to the emergency alert station. Hood County will send the messages. Somervell County will communicate with Hood County on the messages.

• Approved a three-year contract for commissary services at the Somervell County Jail with Keith Commissary. The agreement ensures the county would have no inventory and ordering of commissary services would be done via computer and store in the current inventory location. The contract calls for Somervell County to get 25 percent commission on sales.

Brent Addleman is managing editor of the Glen Rose Reporter. He can be reached at 254-897-2282 or email to brent.addleman@theglenrosereporter.com. Follow him on Twitter: @GRR_Editor.