Daviess County officials are preparing to fill a long vacant position in the Highway Department. The Daviess County Commissioners will have an executive session Monday to begin interviewing applicants for the new County Engineer position.
"We advertised it and received resumes and applications from three well-qualified candidates," said County Highway Superintendent Phil Cornelius. "All of them have good backgrounds. We have some really good applicants."
A county engineer is not something totally new for Daviess County. "We had one in the past," said Commissioner's President Tony Wichman. "Our last one retired in 2002 and we just couldn't re-fill the position."
For local officials filling the spot now just makes sense. "An on-staff engineer would allow us to do our own inspections on the Cannelburg Road Project," said Cornelius. "We are hoping to do the same thing the state did when it built I-69 and keep as much engineering on the project in house. We believe that by doing that we could see as much as $600,000 in direct savings on the Cannelburg Road project in the next year and we could recover as much as $2 million over the entire project."
"Hiring an engineer now, just makes financial sense," added Wichman. "He could probably save us enough on engineering fees to consultants on the Cannelburg Road project to pay for the position over the next 7 years."
While the engineer's main focus for the first few years may be Cannelburg Road, that won't be the only work he will be doing. "We think there will be enough down time during that project to have him work on some other things for the county," said Cornelius. "This person will be an asset to us in other ways."
"This person will be able to do design and inspection work on anything else we need," added Wichman. "This will save us a lot of money on consulting fees."