Quorum Court approves
hazardous driving fines

Megan Heyl
Staff Writer

Prior to its monthly meeting, the Lawrence County Quorum Court held a budget meeting on Nov. 12. The court reviewed a projected $2.78 million County General Budget. The budget is expected to be finalized at the December Quorum Court meeting.

During its regular session, the court passed an ordinance prohibiting hazardous driving within the county for all motor vehicles. Hazardous driving includes, but is not limited to swerving, starting and stopping in a manner that loses traction, accelerating in a manner that causes spinning, skidding or sliding, and failing to obey posted stop and speed limit signs.

Any person found guilty of hazardous driver will be fined between $75 and $250 and shall pay court costs of $75. These fines will be handled through the Lawrence County Sheriff's Office, County Attorney and the District Court.

"This will allow the money collected on these fines to stay in Lawrence County. Right now we have to write state tickets," Sheriff Jody Dotson said.

Dotson also reported that this will prevent the state from passing on ticket information to insurance companies, fines can all be handled in county and it won't cause an increase in a person's insurance.

Starting Jan. 1, county employees who drive work vehicles home will have a $3 per day fringe benefit recorded on their W2.

County Judge Dale Freeman expressed frustration regarding economic development in Lawrence County.

Also at the meeting, the court passed ordinances:

  • for real and personal millage taxes for the year 2013 to be levied in the year 2014.

  • to appropriate pass-through funds to four local volunteer fire departments: Lynn, $6,694; Sedgwick, $1,093; Clover Bend, $810; and Saffell, $644.

  • to appropriate the sum of $33,940, which represents a grant from AEDC, to use for development of county roads 440 and 441.

  • that recognizes how the Game and Fish Commission shall handle the funds received through fines, which are distributed to school districts in Lawrence County for use in educational programs.

  • to appropriate the sum of $25,000, which represents a grant from the Game and Fish Commission, to be use for a shooting range.

  • for the lease of a Caterpillar 120M Motor Grader 2010 model with 505 hours.

  • to pay end-of-the-year merit pay to county employees and elected officials.

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