April 12, 2017 Edition

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County to honor Jarboe

Megan Heyl
Staff Writer

The Lawrence County Quorum Court discussed hiring a new county attorney following the death of Dick Jarboe.

County Judge John Thomison said Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Ryan Cooper will assist the county as able until a solution is found. He added that they would like to hire someone locally if possible.

While hiring an attorney is the responsibility of the county judge, Thomison said he wants the court's full input. "I want us all to be on the same page."

While no action was taken in hiring a new attorney, the court did vote to honor Jarboe with a plaque for his many years of service to the county.

In other business, the budget committee gave some updates on county finances, including several opportunities for cost savings.

The county will be switching to L.S. & Associates for health insurance, saving thousands of dollars for the county. Additionally, there will be some improvements on benefits with the option for an employee-paid lower deductible.

"We're giving a lot better benefits with an extreme cost savings for the county," Thomison said. He added that the county was looking at spending over $70,000 more annually with other providers.

Additionally, the county is also looking to install a fiber line and consolidate phone and internet bills among the courthouse and new jail where possible at another significant savings for the county.

County Clerk Tina Stowers also added that the county unemployment compensation rate went down from 2.8 percent to .8 percent, saving the county about $10,000 a quarter.

In other business:

the court discussed the need to maintain some law enforcement presence at the courthouse after the sheriff's office moves out. One option suggested would be to have a deputy stationed at the courthouse.

the court appropriated $70,000 to the county fair fund. The money was an insurance payout on damaged bleachers.

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