July 10, 2013 Edition

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District court officer added

Megan Heyl
Staff Writer

During its Monday night meeting, the Quorum Court passed an ordinance to hire Magen Price as a full-time district court probation officer.

Plans had previously been to hire Price as an independent contractor but County Attorney Dick Jarboe suggested the change in employment status to avoid legal issues that might have arisen under the statute that was to be used.

Price will begin this week, including working at 25 arraignments scheduled for Thursday.

A surety bond will be contracted for Price, and she will be required to make monthly reports on all fees collected and turn in those fees to a separate fund.

The court will finalize plans for Price's employment at a future meeting.

District Court Judge Jason Marshall said that there are benefits beyond collecting fees that a probation officer can bring. Many on probation are not eligible for jobs due to failed drug tests, part of a probation officer's job is to schedule regular tests for violators. Judge Marshall said that he hopes that this could lead to higher employment rates for the county.

"I want this to benefit the county, not just the district court," Judge Marshal said in regards to hiring a probation officer.

Also at the meeting:

  • the justices appropriated $7,500 to pay current bills for the 4-H shooting sports program. The money will be paid back within 30 days from an Arkansas Game and Fish rural development grant 4-H has been awarded.

  • the court passed an ordinance to appropriate $8,000 to the Saffell Volunteer Fire Department from grant money the department has received.

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