By Daniel Brunty
The Webster Progress-Times
The Webster County Board of Supervisors rehired all county employees during its first meeting of 2014 this past Monday at the Justice Court courtroom.
The Board of Supervisors voted on Jan. 6 to rehire all county employees on the same terms and conditions. The rehiring motion also included entering into contracts on behalf of the county with Chancery Clerk Russ Turner to serve as board clerk and Buchanan Meek Jr. to serve as board attorney.
The board also voted to allow all supervisors, chancery clerk and board attorney to attend the Mississippi Association of Supervisors’ Midwinter Conference Jan. 6-8.
Justice Clerk Janice Brunty then addressed the board, giving the supervisors a report on the collection of old fines. She informed the board that collections were steadily increasing, and that communication between the Justice Court and the fine collection agency that the county uses were improving, allowing for more collection of fines.
Next, board President Pat Cummings made a call to Scott Favre, public adjuster, who is working with the county on the courthouse insurance settlement claim.
Favre informed the board about the latest from the insurance company, and how he felt confident that an end to the settlement would soon be reached. Favre stated that the county should receive something concrete from the insurance company within the next two weeks.
The board members told Favre to stay on top of the issue, and they would be waiting to hear back from him very soon.
In other business Monday, the board approved:
• payment of $125 to Tu Hoang of Starkville for acting as interpreter in a Justice Court case involving Khyen Dao.
• allowing District 1 Constable Jeff McMinn to serve as a part-time sheriff deputy for the Webster County Sheriff’s Department for a total term of three months. He will not receive any compensation other than his constable’s salary.
With the board members preparing to travel to the Mid-Winter Conference, the board recessed until Jan. 21 at the Justice Court courtroom. The board will hold all of its future meetings in the courtroom until further notice.
The Webster County Board of Supervisors also met Dec. 31, when it voted to approve a resolution to enter into an amended interlocal agreement establishing the Regional Economic Partnership of Mississippi with Choctaw and Montgomery counties.
Additionally, the motion approved amending the existing agreement and changing the nature of the board membership to reflect the new attorney general’s opinion. It also authorized the board president and clerk to sign on behalf of the county.
The original agreement stated that the members of the partnership’s board of trustees were to be currently elected supervisors from the county that he or she represents.
In the amendments made to the agreement, however, supervisors would not be asked to serve on the board of trustees. Now, each board of supervisors from each of the three counties will appoint two members to the board of trustees. Also mentioned in the agreement are the term limits, including one member from each county serving a two-year term and one a four-year term, with each subsequent appointment being for a four-year term.
The Choctaw County Board of Supervisors voted Dec. 30 to enter into the amended interlocal agreement. District 5 Supervisor Eric Chambers was the only Choctaw County supervisor who voted against entering into the agreement. The Choctaw County Economic Development District agreed Dec. 10 to provide the funds that would allow Choctaw County to enter into the agreement.
Dec. 31 Meeting
Also on Dec. 31, the board voted to:
• enter into 2014 Digital Ortho photo agreement with Surdex Corp. to provide aerial imagery of Webster County for $13,326, and authorized board president to sign on behalf of the county.
• accept the resignation of Christy Johnson as a full-time employee in the tax office as of Jan. 10 and allow Carolyn Lane to work more than 80 hours as needed during the tax season.
• maintain the driveway of Timmy Ray in District 2 as a school bus turnaround for remainder of the school year per its designation by the school board.
• enter into the minutes the certificate of the state Department of Revenue finally approving the real and personal tax rolls for 2013.
• approve the attendance of Deputy Circuit Clerks Wanda Robinson and Sherry Henderson at the “Voter ID Card Issuance Process Training” at Jackson on Jan. 17 and to reimburse their mileage.
• approve the claims docket for the month.