Delaware County commissioners on Thursday honored the one person who made sure the lights worked and everything was in good working order in the county’s 36 buildings.
Manager of maintenance Jack Prim, who is retiring, has seen everything from a few hundred clogged drains to one of the county buildings on fire.
Over the last 27 years, the county has grown and Prim’s job has grown along with it. “In reality, a lot of work goes into maintaining these county buildings,” said interim director of facilities Jon Melvin. “When things get out of balance is when people typically pay attention.”
When things were out of balance, everyone calls the guy in charge. “The guy with a thousand bosses around the county — that is Jack,” Commissioner Jeff Benton said.
Prim was asked to say a few words about his retirement at Thursday’s county commission meeting. Even though he had been before commissioners many times before, Prim had a case of nerves. “I don’t know why it is so hard to be calm, cool and collected in front of you guys,” Prim said.
“It’s a huge honor and a huge responsibility to run the buildings,” he said.
Showing his pride for the buildings, he pointed in the direction of the new judicial building being built across the street from the commissioners’ building. “You have the building over there growing,” Prim said. “I wanted to a part of that but you have to draw the line somewhere.”
Prim said he doesn’t only have pride for the buildings but also for the people on his staff. “These guys, this crew right here, are above the national average,” he said.
Commissioner Gary Merrell said he noticed Prim didn’t talk about himself or his plans for retirement. “You talked about the future of the county and you talked about these people and the role they will play,” Merrell said. “This says more about you than anything else we can talk about.”
“This job is 24/7 and you and your staff have done such a wonderful job,” said Commissioner Barb Lewis. “Thank you for your service.”
Commissioners also held a public hearing for consideration of a new road from Cheshire Road to Berlin Station Road for a fourth new Olentangy high school. Two people spoke in favor of the road to increase the safety for schoolchildren. One person spoke in opposition to the road.
D. Anthony Botkin may be reached at 740-413-0902 or on Twitter @dabotkin.