CARTHAGE, Mo. β€” Mail service for Jasper County offices in Carthage and Joplin will save taxpayers a little money as the result of a change in service providers, Jasper County Clerk Charlie Davis said.

Davis said an agreement with Ozark Mailing Service will save the county about $4,400 a year in a simplified arrangement.

Currently, the county has to lease equipment to stamp and sort mail as well as pay for maintenance and postage.

Those costs last year amounted to $137,159. Of that, postage costs were $122,500 plus machine rent of about $12,000 a year along with supplies and maintenance of about $2,500, Davis said.

There also are security concerns with the current arrangement for mail pickup. The clerk said the mail from all offices is taken to an unsecured area in county buildings and left for pickup. It may take the current service provider several days to collect the mail, which sometimes contains checks, Davis said.

The new arrangement with Ozark Mailing Service does not involve leasing or maintaining machines. Additionally, outgoing mail can be kept secure in county offices until it is picked up. The cost of the new service will be $132,790, Davis said.

The new mail collection agreement also allows county employees to attend to their office duties rather than having to spend time to prepare the mail to go out on the leased machinery, he said Tuesday at a meeting of the Jasper County Commission.

In other business, commissioners approved continuation of $20,000 contract for engineering services by Olsson Associates Inc.

The contract provides for services related to county stormwater projects for $8,000; flood plain design, $8,000; subdivision road programs, $3,000; and speed studies and other traffic safety concerns on county roads for $1,000.

Darieus Adams, Western District commissioner, said the existing contract will be extended for a year as a result of the commission's vote Tuesday.

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