Darren Doyle, story:
The Edmonson County Fiscal Court voted to increase County Road Supervisor Greg Carroll's annual salary to $54,000, retroactive to August, 2021, although two magistrates did not attend today's meeting.
The proposed $4K salary increase was first voted down by magistrates on September 25, 2021 with Edd Rich and Johnny Brooks being the only magistrates that voted in favor. Magistrates Mark Meeks, Corey VanMeter, James Vincent, and Charlie Tarter voted against the increase.
The same item was once again added to the fiscal court agenda two meeting later on October 25, 2021. Judge Cannon said the reasoning for returning the item to the agenda was because the county would stand to lose up to $5 million in FEMA disaster road aid projects if the county loses any more manpower at the road department and that Greg Carroll had been averaging approximately 20 more hours per week than normal.
No motion was made to vote on the increase; however, District 3 Magistrate Charlie Tarter made a motion to table the discussion so that he could bring the item to the attention of his constituents. That motion was seconded by Dist. 1 Mag. Mark Meeks. A roll call vote was held to table the item; the results were as follows: Tarter YES, Meeks YES, VanMeter YES, Vincent YES, Rich NO, Brooks NO. The motion made on October 25th to table the item passed.
Today, the proposed salary increase returned to the fiscal court agenda for the third time. No additional discussion was had on the proposed increase, only a vote. Dist. 4 Mag. Rich made the motion, which was seconded by Dist. 5 Mag. Johnny Brooks. A role call voted resulted in Rich, Brooks, and Vincent voting YES with Tarter voting NO. Without Meeks and VanMeter present, no more votes were cast and the motion passed 3-1.
Discussions for a possible regional jail between Edmonson, Butler, and Ohio Counties continued today as County Attorney Greg Vincent updated the court on the latest between the counties.
Vincent said he and Ohio County Attorney Justin Keown had been going back-and-forth on an agreement between the three counties that would meet state requirements thus far. In the proposed agreement, which would only be part of a long process of moving forward, and not necessarily to commit to building a regional jail, Vincent said the counties would appoint a regional commission or board that would continue preparations, understand guidelines and regulations, select (but not purchase at this time) property for the facility, choose plans, and conduct environmental studies in order to receive grants that would be needed to fund a jail.
Vincent said at this point, it has been agreed that Ohio County would be responsible for 50% of commission costs, with Edmonson and Butler covering 25% each, plus the same percentages for all costs for the first year after the jail would be built; however, he said the language was too vague regarding after year one, currently described as "a formula." Vincent said this "formula" is not clear and leaves too many questions unanswered.
Vincent advised the fiscal court to discuss policies that would be in the county's best interest regarding costs moving forward after year one because the proposed formula is just simply not yet laid out.
Judge Executive Wil Cannon said he would request another meeting to continue discussions concerning the proper language and whatever formulas would best benefit Edmonson County in the regional jail discussion until any sort of vote could be had.
County Road Report: Supervisor Greg Carroll said local road workers started salting county roads on Thursday and finished Saturday, compiling a total of 53 hours. He said total labor and resource cost for the county was a total of $105,800. Carroll said he ordered the remaining 200 tons of salt from the original order of 500 tons. He also reported that as a result of the snow and additional rainfall, there were currently four county bridges under water that included Willie Webb Road, Oak Hill Road, Cedar Grove Church Road, and Grassland-Blackgold Road.
He also mentioned the $48,780 that was awarded by the state to the county for flood damages on Knob Road. In addition, he also noted several truck and equipment breakdowns as well as multiple problems with trucks during the snow storm from three trucks bought new in 2016.
Sheriff Report: Sheriff Shane Doyle reported on the altercation that resulted in an arrest on New Year’s Eve: He said that during a child welfare call, two deputies were taken to the hospital after they were attacked by the owner's pitbulls. He also said that the recent snow resulted in several vehicle accidents but no serious injuries.
Jailer Report: Judge Executive Wil Cannon stated that there were currently 39 county inmates housed at the Hart County Jail.
County Clerk Report: County Clerk Kevin Alexander told the court that the candidate filing deadline has been extended to Thursday, January 25th.
The court also voted to: