County jail cooler floor slated for face-lift

COLUMBIA CITY — The floor of the walk-in cooler at the county jail needs a sprucing up, according to the Whitley County Sheriff’s Department.Deputy Marcus Gatton appeared before the Whitley County Commissioners last week to report on needed repairs to the cooler’s floor, which is part of the jail’s original 1986 construction.“Back in January, the jail received a health warning,” said Gatton.“We have three months to rectify it.”According to Gatton, the floor of the walk-in cooler is rusty and uncleanable.He said the Sheriff’s Department put out notices to five companies in an attempt to receive bids for repairs to the floor.“We’re two months in as of today,” said Gatton.The low bid, according to Gatton, was by Indianapolis-based Environmental Panel Systems, that he said could install a 10-gauge diamond aluminum tread plate for about $1,300, which would be a line item in the department’s budget.Gatton said the jail’s food service personnel would reduce their inventory in anticipation of the repairs since the cooler would have to be emptied and shut off while the repairs are made.