The ShareOhio program – which allows local governments to share equipment and resources – now includes Cuyahoga County. County Council approved joining the program this week, which officials say will save money.
Cuyahoga County Councilman Dave Greenspan says the program provides extra resources in emergency situations like Superstorm Sandy several years ago, when not every part of the state was affected.
“Any community that’s in the system, their assets are available to be used. So when we were dealing with issues up here, other parts of the state, for example, were not.”
Greenspan says the county had waited to join the program until passage of a state law outlining that borrowers are solely responsible for damage caused by equipment. They’re also is they break any of the borrowed equipment.
The program began two years ago with a test in Lake County. Matt Schweikert is director of Mentor’s Public Works Department, and says they’ve been loaning equipment and personnel for several years.
“Not a lot of people have bucket trucks. In, Mentor we have about 90 signalized intersections, so we really need it. Many communities don’t have anywhere near that. So in some cases, we’re certainly able to help out with replacing a light bulb here and there that can be very expensive to contract out. But we’re really able to assist them for next-to-nothing.”
Lake County is one of 34 counties currently participating in ShareOhio, along with several public entities including the Ohio Turnpike.