February 21, 2007 EditionAlso in this issue...
JPs hear report on LHSKemberly Roberts
The annual audit report of Lawrence Health Services and a proposal to purchase a new ballot counter were presented to the Quorum Court at their February meeting held Thursday at 2 p.m.
In the report, which covered the hospital, nursing home, health clinic and charity care, Chief Financial Officer Sandy Sullens stated that LHS spent $300,000 on renovations. The hospital added bathrooms to patient rooms that lacked these facilities.
"Our net patients didn't grow a lot and business didn't grow a lot," Sullens said. LHS, however, received $668,000 in sales tax and sales rose 80 percent for the year, making up for the lack of growth in net patients and business.
Justice of the Peace Craig Stone suggested the purchase of a new ballot counting machine. The ES&S Model 650 costs $15,000, with yearly maintenance fees totaling $2,000 per year. The machine counts approximately 300 ballots a minute and supports a full range of jurisdiction sizes and ballot complexities.
According to Stone, the machine "will do everything we need it to do."
"We need to get it done so we'll have plenty of time to train people," Stone added. The new machine is a smaller version of the same machine that the county has used for years
Lawrence County's current ballot counter, described by the court as "obsolete," caused problems during last November's election, delaying the election results.
The court voted to present the proposal to the budget committee.
In other business, the court:
- anticipated the revenue of $25,000 from Burlington Northern Railroad to the road department and appropriated $25,000 to the Lawrence County Road Department.
- voted to put out a bid for upgrades for Phase II of Lawrence County's 911 system.
- voted to have Judge Alex Latham send a letter explaining that the county is currently unable to afford new shroud lights on the lights in the county, in compliance with the Shielded Outdoor Lighting Act, which requires covering on outdoor lights to conserve energy and preserve the environment. Judge Latham also said that stargazers were major supporters of this act.
- voted to send Justice Stone to be the delegate for the Court at the Arkansas Association of Counties meeting in Little Rock.
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