Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Supervisors Deal with Roads/EMA/Holidays and Receive Some Good News on WCCRCF

Winston County Supervisors had a shorter than usual meeting on Monday but did deal with a number of issues. The Board heard from Kemp and Associates concerning several road projects including asphalt issues with the Calvary/Hinze and Oak Grove Road as well as bridge replacement on the Triplett Store Road.

 Buddy King, County EMA Director briefed the Board on several issues as well, including the need for a board order to officially establish and name a Civil Defense/EMA office.
An audit recently completed could not find an official order on record. The board adopted such an order. The Board also adopted the National Incident Management System for Winston County and established the Winston County Sheriff as the 3rd in command during emergency situations. The President and Vice President of the Board of Supervisors are considered 1st and 2nd in command.

In other business, the Board accepted the recent grand jury report, approved days off requested by specific employees, corrected an erroneous tax sale, approved advertisement for bids on a front end loader for District 4 and heard a taxpayer complaint over a solid waste bill.

Supervisors approved an order to pay the cost for a new bond issuance for Winston Choctaw County Regional Correctional facility. The reissuance of bonds cost is roughly $50,000 but will save the county approximately $250-260,000 over a four year period.

After discussion, the Board also approved the following holidays for Winston County employees: Thanksgiving, Thursday and Friday, November 28,29 and Christmas, Tuesday and Wednesday, December 24,25.

Finally the Board was briefed by WCCRCF warden Neal Higgason on changes at the facility, including employee hirings and resignations. Higgason also indicated that the Mississippi Department of Corrections strongly recommended some changes to the facility as part of a statewide crackdown on contraband entering the prison system. MDOC recommended the use of security netting around and over yard areas at the facility to prevent outsiders from throwing contraband into the facility. Discussion ensued over the need to cut timber around the facility for security issues as well and to build additional fencing around the maintenance area. The Board approved advertising for bids for the timber and Warden Higgason will research cost further on fencing and netting.

Financial issues at the facility were also discussed. Higgason indicated that there is approximately $1.7 million owed on the facility and is expected to be paid out over the next four years. He also indicated that the facility was making a small profit and that the financial situation should continue to improve.