Sheriff’s office to join world of social media

By CANDY NEAL
cneal@dcherald.com

The Dubois County Sheriff’s Office will soon have a presence on Facebook and possibly other social media.

Sgt. Stuart Wilson attended public information officer training recently and told the Dubois County Commissioners Monday that the office would greatly benefit from having a Facebook page. Wilson and Sheriff Tom Kleinhelter presented the idea at Monday’s commissioners meeting.

“It will give us a real-time way that we just don’t have right now to push information out to the public,” Wilson said. “I would have the ability to do that from the car, from a phone, from anywhere.”

Press releases that are currently sent out via fax or email could be posted to the page, Wilson explained.

The office could also post other information, such as information about flooded roads or public safety matters. The page could be a place for deputies to ask the public for information concerning a case they are investigating. And the office could tell the public about activities deputies or office staff are involved in, Wilson said.

“We have an amazing staff, and a lot of times they’re not in the limelight,” Wilson said. “I think it would be beneficial to the department and the county for the public to see what our officers are doing on a regular basis.”

Wilson would like to make posts on the page two or three times a week, he said. He also requested to have the option of creating Twitter and Instagram accounts for the sheriff’s office, though he wasn’t sure if those would actually be created.

The commissioners approved the requests, referring the office to the county’s social media policy for guidance.

 

The commissioners also:

• Approved the retirement of K-9 Karma, with the sheriff’s office, by declaring her as surplus. A story about Karma and her career ran in Monday’s Herald. The office is now raising donations to purchase another K-9, who will partner with Deputy Clint Gogel. Those interested in contributing can contact Gogel at 812-639-9950.

• Agreed to add a dispatcher position to the 911 department. The position must be funded by the Dubois County Council before it can be made active.

• Approved bids on paving projects that will use Community Crossings grant funding. Those projects include $394,800 to E&B Paving of Clarksville for the entire Industrial Park Road; $304,301 to Calcar Paving of Jasper for County Road 1025 East from State Road 64 to State Road 164; $277,643 to Calcar Paving for County Road 100 South from County Roads 600 West to 650 West, and County Road 650 West from County Roads 100 West to 350 South; and $338,108 to JH Rudolph of Tell City for County Road 550 South from Club Road to State Road 162 and from the state road to County Road 100 East. The Town of Ferdinand will cover $184,370.95 of the Industrial Park Road project; the town council must consider approval of the cost at its meeting.

• Heard that a plan has been worked out with a private landowner to allow residents of Stewart Road to use a private lane to get to their homes when flooding blocks their access to Stewart.

• Approved Solar Sources’ request to close County Road 580 North just east of County Road 750 West for about two weeks in May to allow workers to pour concrete paving on the road and allow that to cure and set. The date of the closure will be dependent on weather. But prior to the closure, the public will be notified, County Engineer Brent Wendholt said.

• Approved Solar Sources’ plan to work on paving County Road 450 North between County Roads 800 West and 750 West this spring and next spring. Bad parts of the road will be removed and 3-inch base asphalt and chip/seal mat will be laid this spring, with a 2-inch overlay to be laid next spring, Solar Sources representative Ed Hartzburge said. The company will give the county a $69,000 surety bond as insurance that the work will be done. This year’s project is due to be completed by July 1; next year’s project will be completed by July 1, 2020.

• Accepted Fairground Road into the county’s inventory.

• Heard that a Census Complete Count Committee is being created for the county. The committee will be led by Dubois County Councilwoman Becky Beckman, who said that everyone involved must work hard to encourage each citizen to complete the 2020 census. The county and municipalities will work together to get the word out about the April 1, 2020, census as well as recruit local people to fill paying census jobs, Beckman said.




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