Schuylkill County commissioners, at a work session Wednesday, granted county Community Development Block Grant director Gary Bender's request to seek bids to demolish homes in Coaldale Borough and Delano Township.

Bender said the bids are to tear down a vacant, dilapidated single home at 255 W. High St. in Coaldale, which the borough now owns. The property in Delano Township, at 124 High St., is a two-story frame double home that was converted into a single home. It is also vacant and gutted inside, and has been taken over by the township.

Bid specifications for both projects can be obtained from the controller's office at the courthouse and are due back Monday, Sept. 17.

In other matters, commissioners authorized the advertisement for a public meeting on the 2012 Emergency Solutions Grant Program, to be held Monday, Sept. 10 at 10 a.m. in the Human Resource Conference Room at the courthouse. The county is seeking a $400,000 grant to help low income homeowners rehabilitate their homes and assisting the needy.

Bids are also being sought for the cleaning of the county's 911 Communications Center.

Also, bids were opened for the disposal of electronic materials and waste tires, which are to be collected at the 2012 fall cleanup. HSR, of Andreas, submitted a bid on each collection station, and Sims Recycling Solutions Company, Binghamton, N.Y., submitted a bid of $90 per ton.

Two bids were received for the replacement and addition of six inlets to five streets as part of the Walnut Street Improvement Project in Frailey Township. Dallago Backhoe Service, Inc., Marlin Village, Norwegian Township, bid $78,077, plus $17,488 on the first alternate, for paving. Landis C. Deck and Sons, Bernville, bid $103,294.25, and $17,413.57 on the alternate.

The commissioners also accepted and executed a Consolidated Operating Assistance Grant of $2,929,705 from the state Department of Transportation to provide continued funding for the fixed route bus program of the Schuylkill Transportation System. It also includes the shared ride program for older adults, rural transportation program for persons with disabilities, and the Welfare to Work program.

Also, STS received approval to seek bids on 19 surplus vehicles it wishes to dispose of, including 12 passenger buses, with seating for from 10 to 16 passengers, and with wheelchair accessibility.

County real estate director Lisa Mahall discussed with the commissioners updating agreements for the county drop-off recycling centers in Ashland, Auburn, Cressona and Port Carbon boroughs, and Branch, Butler, Eldred, Frailey, Hegins, Mahanoy, Walker, Wayne and West Penn townships. The leases for all of the recycling centers are proposed for three years and would expire in September 2015.

County adult probation director John Richmond asked commissioners for approval to buy a vehicle for use by his department. The $28,927 purchase would be made under the state contract plan. The money would come from the court's offender supervision fee fund a $50 monthly fee for each defendant placed on probation. The maintenance and fuel costs also come out of this fund.

In other matters Wednesday, commissioners were updated on the county's preparations for the Nov. 6 general election.

Commissioners approved elections director Frannie Brennan's request to hire 14 rovers at $10 per hour plus 55 cents a mile to travel to election polling places on election day to handle any problems with the electronic voting machines.

The commissioners also approved a polling place change in Port Carbon Borough, moving the Second Precinct from Tassone's Catering Hall on Washington Street to Saint Paul's Lutheran Church's social hall at 211 Coal St.

Brennan also informed the commissioners that the last day to register to vote is Tuesday, Oct. 9, and the last day to apply for an absentee ballot is Tuesday, Oct. 30. Absentee ballots must be in the election bureau no later than Friday, Nov. 2.

Also on Wednesday, commissioners approved an agreement with Good Will Fire Company, Minersville, for medical assistance transportation to provide services to clients of the human services agency. The fire company can provide oversized wheelchairs, and provide transportation on holidays and for other trips. The agreement, which runs from Sept. 1, 2010 through June 3, 2012, provides the services at $40 for a one-way trip, plus $2 per loaded mile and $25 per hour waiting time.

After the meeting, controller and former caterer Christy Joy fired up the grill for a picnic given by commissioners and their staff for courthouse employees.