Thursday, April. 17, 2008
Board talks flooding, bills
By SUE WATSON
The Marshall County Board of Supervisors went into executive session at about 9:40 a.m. April 7 and handled lots of business matters behind closed doors, emerging from the meeting shortly before the noon hour.
They visited with Industrial Development Authority executive director Bill Renick about a business prospect, heard from tax collector Betty Byrd and circuit clerk Lucy Carpenter, and spoke with tax assessor Juanita Dillard and a personal property consulting firm from DeSoto County.
Supervisors also spoke with county comptroller Susie Hill in executive session and discussed litigation issues with attorney Kent Smith. County administrator Larry Hall also presented a personnel issue in closed session.
In open session, District 3 Supervisor Keith Taylor voiced concerns about watershed problems in some subdivisions in Barton.
“It is a serious problem in Barton due to lots flooding,” he said.
Water shedding from recent storms flooded a number of yards in some subdivisions, he said. Sediment is also a problem in some areas, plugging drains, he said.
County administrator Larry Hall agreed with Taylor that the topographic maps and engineering in subdivisions needs to get a closer look when subs are under construction.
“We are going to have to spend more time,” he said. “Sometimes Mother Nature takes her course back. In the future, topo maps need to be looked at.”
Dillard requested travel and training expenses for three employees to go to a two-week certification school, one week held in May and the other in June. The board approved certification costs of $500 for each employee going to school.
Afterward, government liaison Gary Anderson updated the board on legislative matters.
The Legislature is considering bills still alive and in House and Senate conference committees and bills on Gov. Haley Barbour’s desk for signature.
“House Bill 1665 is one the county is interested in and contains the $2.1 million earmarked for the highway project (North Holly Springs bypass),” he said.
He said the county stands in good position for funding of the overlay project because the three of the local delegation sit on both the House Transportation Committee and Ways and Means Committee. The bill passed the House the way county government wants it written, he said. But when the bill went to the Senate, parts of the language in the House Bill was replaced with the Senate’s version, he said.
As a result, the House asked for a conference committee and Rep. Kelvin Buck sits on the conference committee, he said.
“It feels good that we have somebody inside the committee representing our interests,” he said.
After leaving committee the bill gets an up or down vote by the Legislature, he said.
“Senator Bill Stone on the Senate side is pressing for it,” he said.
Other items that the Legislature is considering that affects the county or city of Holly Springs include a renewable energy deal the city wants passed, a public officials pay raise, and a $180 million shortfall in funds for Medicaid.
The regular session ends April 19.
Anderson said the Legislature cannot end the session without a balanced budget, therefore the Medicaid hole may be addressed in a special session following the close of regular session.
All local and private requests the county has requested are satisfied, he said.
Supervisor George Zinn III asked for information on a prospective bill placing stipulations on scrap metal yards.
“I listened to the debate on it,” Anderson said. “The concern is about copper theft from new home construction or from existing residences. If you are in the salvage business, the bill will stipulate the operator identify where the copper wire came from and keep records.”
He said the bill is designed to crack down on petty theft of copper and more importantly the massive damage thieves do to property while stripping out copper from outside HVAC units and off mobile homes.
“The House and Senate is close on this language in the bill in terms of reporting,” Anderson said. “They are patterning the bill after some other states.”
Zoning director Conway Moore asked the board of supervisors to review the fireworks stand ordinance which is set for a public hearing May 19 at 10 a.m. at the board room.
Taylor said he felt the setback requirements from stores and other properties should be greater than 100 feet.
“I think it’s too dangerous to put a stand too close to a store,” he said.
Board attorney Kent Smith recommended between a half million and one million liability insurance be required of fireworks stand operators.
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