Work to expand and improve the intersection of South Old State Road and Lewis Center Road will begin later this spring.

Work to expand and improve the intersection of South Old State Road and Lewis Center Road will begin later this spring.

At their Feb. 26 meeting, the Delaware County commissioners approved an agreement with the Ohio Public Works Commission (OPWC) that splits the cost of the project between the county and OPWC.

The state will pay $484,792 of the $1.4-million total cost to widen all four approaches to the intersection, adding turn lanes and installing traffic signals, said Chris Bauserman, county engineer. The county will pay the balance.

Also at the meeting, the county gave approval for the county's EMS department to buy an employee training program that will save the county money.

"This (program) will allow us to provide continuing medical education to employees online," rather than the traditional classroom setting they've used in the past, said EMS chief Rob Farmer said.

The online program has a one-time cost to the county of $5,850 and will provide unlimited access to the 130 EMS employees for 2009, Farmer told the commissioners. It is run through Capital University.

Continuing education training for EMS personnel, which is required by state law, was previously done in the classroom outside of the work day for most employees and cost the county $46,000 in overtime, Farmer said. This program can be done during an employee's work day or from home.

"This is exactly what our employees should be doing, looking outside of the box" to control costs, said commissioner Todd Hanks.

In other business the commissioners:

Authorized commissioner Ken O'Brien to commit the county to pay its share to renovate and expand the Central Ohio Youth Center in Union County. The total cost of the project is estimated at $2.3-million, he said. State funding is available for 60 percent of that cost with the remaining $950,000 to be split among the four counties -- Delaware, Union, Champaign and Madison -- that send youthful offenders to the facility. O'Brien is the commissioners' representative to the CYOC board.

Awarded a contract for health care services for inmates at the county jail to Health Professionals LTD.

Appointed Larry Cline to the county's rural zoning commission, Pamela Boratyn to the county's public defender commission and Erwin Dugasz Jr. to the Delaware County Transit Board.

Appointed Bauserman to the OPWC's District 17 integrating committee.