Supervisors dealing with equipment purchases

By PAT BROWN,

Simpson County is in the process of acquiring some new equipment through lease purchase.

Trustmark Bank had the lowest bid and will be financing two new John Deere cab tractors. 

This purchase comes on the heels of having to replace two relatively new tractors from John Deere that were pretty much “lemons” by  county standards.  The were sold through the bid process for $35,000 each from Mississippi Agriculture.   Other bids submitted were in range of $26,000 each. 

The county is also buying three new Western Star dump trucks.  These trucks and the tractors were budgeted for purchase.  The county plans to finance the lease-purchase for 48 months again through Trustmark and expressed interest in getting extended warranties. 

The board also discussed starting a rotational program of the county’s equipment on three year intervals, saying that the equipment loses so much value over time.  

The board approved the extension of the emergency repair order for bridges.  The purpose is to allow the county to respond in a prompt manner rather having to go through the bid process and the potential delays that may cause. 

John Kilpatrick, county emergency services coordinator, estimated that recent damage from tropical storm Olga cost the county $30,000.  This included 200 hours of overtime for county employees. 

Eight families applied for and received relief from the American Red Cross.  Kilpatrick reported that several farms had received damage to barns and other outside structures. 

Kilpatrick told the board that this storm allowed him to see just how well the county reacted in adverse conditions.  He said there was a bit of chaos but overall he was pleased with the way all the different agencies and the general population worked together. 

Thus far for the month of November there have been a total of seven fire calls. 

For the time period of October 15 through November 7, 911 calls have been counted at 748. 

The board approved Adrian Durr’s  promotion to full-time certified assistant supervisor.  Devonte Middleton was increased to full-time certified detention officer.  Cameron Wallace was promoted to part-time certified detention officer.  Kimberly Walker was also included, along with Charles Walker.  Bobby Wayne Snell was decreased to certified detention officer.  James McCabe is moving to part-time non-certified deputy.  Shane Brown is increased to full time certified deputy, and Shane Gibson was hired for the same position. 

The newly elected county officials will be sworn in on January 3 at 10 a.m.

The board heard from a Mr. Neely about the conditions left by log trucks using Boss Stein Road.  He said he was unable to access public roads that lead to his property that he hunts on.  He said that ATVs have come in and torn up the road after the log trucks got through logging.  The county board okayed his placing gates across the road temporarily until the roads can be repaired. 

Neely reported that he had gotten approval from all owners of adjoining property.  The county agreed to provide a culvert and a load of gravel so he could access his property. 

The board approved hiring Jeremy Bolton and Anthony Barr in the Road Department, one as assistant mechanic and the other to handle road signs. 

Board attorney Danny Welch reported to the board that he is working on the lease with Howard Industries but was not willing to give concessions that Howard’s had requested.  Welch reported there are 87 employees at a regular payroll of about $37,000 a year. 

The county offices will be closed on Thursday and Friday for Thanksgiving.  They will be closed on Christmas Eve as well as Christmas Day. 

The next regular meeting of the Board of Supervisors will be Monday, Dec. 2.