Courthouse

The Franklin County Finance Committee approved on Sept. 8 to fund $579,689 to buy special equipment and related products to combat the coronavirus.

The county is getting $628,350 in federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act funding which will go toward COVID-19 abatement efforts. However, the committee had departments and government-related operations requesting a total of $858,689 in equipment and supplies.

The committee agreed to fund a $250,000 request later for an open-air alternative testing and care facility to be built behind the Farmers Market Pavilion near the Annex Building, plus a separate request for a $29,000 drone to monitor crowd temperatures and reveal coronavirus presence, with COVID-19 relief funds from the state of Tennessee.

County Mayor David Alexander said Franklin County is getting a $1.034 million direct appropriation from the state to fight COVID-19, and money from those coffers could be used to fund the open-air alternative testing and care facility and purchase the drone.

The Finance Committee unanimously agreed to do so.

The funding package will be considered for final approval by the County Commission at its 7 p.m. meeting on Monday at the Franklin County Annex Building.

The funding requests included:

• A low radiation scanner for the Community Reentry program for inmates returning to jail to keep contaminated contraband from entering the jail population — $145,000

• The open-air alternative testing and care facility — $250,000.

• Safe space temperature-scanning equipment for Reentry — $2,011.

• 16 laptop computers, charging equipment, and personal protective equipment for Reentry — $20,000.

• Equipment to provide online Ag Extension classes — $1,900.

• A heavy-duty medical tent for the Health Department to screen for COVID-19 — $13,640.

• Permanent transaction guards for the Franklin County Library — $10,000.

• Book sanitizer and sterilizing equipment for the library — $4,600.

• Cleaning supplies, PPE and video-conferencing software for the library — $3,500.

• Technology upgrades to stream meetings from the County Commission meeting room at the Franklin County Courthouse to reduce public interaction, reducing the threat to spread coronavirus  — $120,000.

• Computer equipment and upgrades to allow Finance Department personnel to work from home and other safe designated areas — $24,000.

• Audio and video conferencing equipment for county facilities — $10,574.

• HaloFogger equipment and cleansing product to environmentally sanitize county buildings — $201,190.

• Sprayers to sanitize individual departments — $5,325.

• Temperature-checking equipment for the Circuit Court Clerk’s office — $2,574.

• Computer equipment to allow Register of Deeds personnel to work from home — $3,575.

• PPE for the Register of Deeds office — $1,800.

• Laptop computers, software and accessories to hold Drug Court meetings and related gatherings on Zoom — $5,500.

• Veterans Administration office upgrades to allow more convenient and safe interactions with the public — $4,500.

• A drone for the Emergency Management Agency to monitor locations for COVID presence — $29,000.