Flora Hilderbran Commissioners to meet with DP&L officials New state graduation requirements called a ‘train wreck’ Catching up with Keller Senior Profile: Justin Knechtly Piketon size is too much for Lady Indians, Peebles falls in sectional finals Greyhounds grab Senior Night win Indians finish regular season riding six-game winning streak Harper, Hupp, Defense lead Lady Devils to fourth consecutive sectional championship West Union Elementary recognizes Students of the Month for January Second Healthy Hero awarded by Adams County Health and Wellness Coalition Coal company files to intervene in power plant closings Senior Profile: Jessica Sowards Senior Profile: Dennis Welch Dorothy E Walls Mabel Chamblin Michael R Jones Marie I Simmons Ray Johnson One thing to remember this President’s Day Adams County Deer Harvest down over 21% MLSD amends five-year budget, prepares for future with power plant closings Lady Dragons triumph in sectional opener Lady Hounds eighth graders capture SHAC Tournament title Gary L Fetters Sr Boys Sectional brackets released ‘We’re only as good as the way we treat others’ Another round of smiles Adams County Board of DD members recognized Terry L Unger 8th Grade Lady Devils ousted in tourney semis WU’s McCarty signs with Ohio Christian Joyce A Huddleson Carolyn Spires BREAKING NEWS: Peebles police search for man accused of selling marijuana-laced sweets Decision Time BBN Senior Profile: Summer Grundy Lady Devils fall to Southeastern, 56-48 Devils outlast Manchester 47-44 in double overtime Peebles holds second Hall of Fame Ceremony Senior Profile: Patrick England Sowards hits 1,000, ties PHS three-point mark County agencies prepare for sweeping budget cuts Manchester Council votes to cut police chief’s hours Wrestling debuts in Adams County Peebles Library hosts book signing As plants power down, community must step up Raymond P Dryden Alva Palmer Billie L Shoemaker Judith Long Brent A Arn Girls basketball sectional pairings announced WU’s Weeks will continue gridiron career at next level West Union JH Boys drop pair at Ripley Eighth Grade Lady Hounds roll into SHAC semi-finals Janet A Kennedy DP&L moving ahead with plans to close power plants Outreach Center in Peebles is a hub of giving River Sweep contest winners announced Gordley hits 1,000 mark, but Indians drop crucial SHAC contest to Lynchburg Manchester lifters compete at Piketon Senior Profile: Madelyn Sanders Charles L Hurd Randy Casto Bobby Strunk Dorothy J Scott Chester A Lanter Coach David Smalley picks up 500th career win at Rio Grande Dustin Holbrook Senior Profile: Camron Gordley As usual, optimism abounds on 2017 Reds Caravan Breeze, Beasley newest members of NAHS Athletic HOF Two humble men Adams County Manor Home Health Care makes road to recovery easier Don and Venita Bowles named as Outstanding Fair Supporters ‘Tip off For Tammy’ is a huge success, joint effort by two schools Husted campaign makes stop in Peebles Benefit held for double-lung transplant recipient I loved that muddy water, building in the creek Margaret E Broughton Larry A Hanson DP&L press release confirms closing of power plants Eighth grade girls showdown lives up to hype, North Adams wins in overtime, 45-43 Senior Profile: Raeanna Stamm North Adams Football sign-ups coming soon North Adams JV girls go 11-4 with win over Peebles Harper wins MaxPreps/JJHuddle Athlete of the Week West Union duo headed to the college gridiron Lady Devils make it 11 straight with win at Peebles Adams County residents attend Trump Inauguration A Look back at our Archives Peebles native comes home to film documentary Ohio Valley Wrestling Cub hosting home match on Jan. 31 Ruth A Branscome Velma Hughes Carol L Lewis Betty L Greiner Devils top New Boston 63-53 in finale of Coach Young Classic Lady Devils rout Eastern Pike in Young Classic

County agencies prepare for sweeping budget cuts

The Adams County Health Department is one of the county agencies that will lose funding when DP&L goes through with their vow to close the county’s coal-based power plants.

Specter of shuttered power plants and lost tax revenue leads to worries over county’s future –

Story by Patricia Beech –
Photo by Mark Carpenter –

For over 40 years the Stuart and Killen Stations have provided jobs and economic resources to Adams County’s communities. In turn, residents and local government have come to rely on the two coal-fired plants as the driving force behind the county’s economy.
If DP&L follows through with their plan to shut down the plants in June 2018, the economic stability they provided will soon become a thing of the past, and Adams County could be left without any sort of replacement for the financial resources they provided.
The loss of those resources, according to Adams County Commissioner Brian Baldridge, will be felt across-the-board.
“The effects of the potential closings will be wide-ranging throughout the county government and our school districts,” Baldridge said. “Also troubling is the additional loss of $35,000,000 in payroll that is spent and circulated throughout the region by DP&L employees – that loss alone will negatively impact every business and individual in the county.”
The Commissioners are hoping to convince DP&L to delay closing the plants so that local departments and agencies have more time to prepare for the sweeping budget cuts.
Adams County Auditor David Gifford provided to The Defender a list of the county agencies and departments that will be affected by the plant closings and subsequent loss of tax revenue.
The county General Fund, which supports multiple departments including the Sheriff’s Office, the Common Pleas Court, the Prosecutor’s office, and the Recorder and Treasurer’s offices will lose $768,952 which constitutes a 32% decrease in tax revenue and a 10% decrease of total estimated revenue.
The two county townships housing the power plants will also experience deep budget cuts: Sprigg will lose $159,743 and Monroe $246,794 annually.
The Adams County Ohio Valley School District (ACOVSD) will see a decrease of $108,165 while the Manchester Local School District (MLSD) will take an even harder hit losing $5,661,482 annually. MLSD Treasurer Karen Ballengee said the loss would eventually leave the district “dead in the water”.
Senior Citizens Services can expect $138,012 to be cut from their annual budget – which Mary Stout, Director of the Senior Citizens facility in West Union, says “will definitely effect consumers who use our home and transportation services.”
Children’s Services will have an estimated $388,761 cut from their yearly budget; Adams County Developmental Disabilities will lose $308,950 annually; the Ambulance/EMS agency loss will be $394,329; and the Hope Van funding will be cut $30,860 annually.
Adams County Libraries can expect a $197,164 cut – a 34% decrease in funding. Library Director Nick Sloan said, “The library Board of Trustees is working to formulate a plan to deal with the cuts and minimize the effect on the community as much as possible.”
The Health Department, which provides a wide range of health and environmental services to the community will lose an estimated $98,580 annually. Director Dr. William Hablitzel said the department would “look very closely at the budget and do what is necessary to exist within our means.” He said his greatest concern was that DP&L would seek a devaluation of their generating equipment.
“I’m concerned about further devaluation at the plant as was done when Duke sold out,” Hablitzel added. “If they go forward and revalue the rest of the plant that will be a pretty big hit for all of us. I think what worries everyone is what this loss may foreshadow for the future.”
Commissioner Baldridge says he isn’t ready to give up on DP&L or Adams County’s future.
“I’m not the type to give up,”  Baldridge says.“We’re going to keep up the fight.”
DP&L’s settlement plan, now under consideration by the Public Utilities Commission, provides only $2 million in shareholder money for workforce and economic development in Adams and Brown Counties as well as job training assistance for families impacted by the shuttering of the two plants. County officials are hopeful DP&L will be open to increasing that funding to include local infrastructure development to attract new business and industry.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

2016 People's Defender