X-ray machines for safety checkpoints OK’d

By Sam Wildow - Miami Valley Today

MIAMI COUNTY — The Board of Miami County Commissioners approved the purchase of X-ray scanners during their meeting on Tuesday, which will be used for the future safety checkpoints coming to the lobbies of the Miami County Safety Building and the Miami County Courthouse.

The commissioners approved a quote from Event Metal Detectors/Security Detection out of Sylvania for the purchase of two Rapiscan compact tunnel checkpoint security screening X-ray machines. The cost is not to exceed $49,690, which also includes two roller beds and a two-year extended service contract, as well as fees for delivery, setup, and orientation. The X-ray machines will be used to process bags, purses, briefcases, and other items that may need searched when the public enters either the old courthouse or the Safety Building. The county’s metal detectors will also be moved to those lobbies for the public to walk through when entering those buildings.

The safety checkpoints have been an ongoing project for various county departments, including the courts, the Miami County Sheriff’s Office, the IT Department, and the Operations and Facilities Department. The entire project is expected to cost approximately $100,000, which also includes the cost of additional personnel, cameras, alarms, hardware, phone lines, and work stations that would come with those checkpoints.

Also during their meeting, the commissioners approved the Miami County Recorder’s proposal to collect and to pay $5 into a fund for equipment needs from every document recorded and/or filed in 2020.

Later on, Leiann Stewart, executive director for the Miami County Visitors & Convention Bureau, spoke with the commissioners about the 2020 budget for the Miami County Visitors & Convention Bureau, along with the bureau’s marketing plan. The bureau’s total 2020 operating budget is approximately $485,400. The bureau’s lodging tax revenue was budgeted at $440,000 for 2019 and $465,000 for 2020.

“We’re having a good year for 2019. We do anticipate hitting our budgeted lodging tax revenue for the year,” Stewart said. “So you’ll see that for 2020 we do have a budgeted increase for lodging tax revenue. We feel confident with where we’re going to end up this year and with the new hotel being built here in Troy that we’ll hit that number.”

Stewart said the new hotel is expected to be open in the spring. Stewart later said that, in September of this year, the county’s lodging tax revenue has been up over 10 percent from last year.

Stewart went on to say the bureau will be increasing its advertising in 2020, as well as partnering with Tourism Economics and Tourism Ohio to gather statistics about Miami County’s tourism. The bureau will also be creating a new strategic plan.

“We have not had a strategic plan since fall 2014,” Stewart said. “We feel it’s time to have a planning session again.”

She explained how the bureau felt like it was a good time to create a new strategic plan due to that time gap since the last strategic plan in addition to her transitioning into the role of executive director. The planning session is expected to be held in mid-March.

By Sam Wildow

Miami Valley Today

Reach Sam Wildow at swildow@aimmediamidwest.com. ©2019 Miami Valley Today, all rights reserved.

Reach Sam Wildow at swildow@aimmediamidwest.com. ©2019 Miami Valley Today, all rights reserved.