Thursday, November 25, 2010
Officials unsure about districts
By SUE WATSON
There is no consensus among the Mississippi Association of Supervisors to ask for a blanket moving forward of the March 1, 2011, candidate qualifying deadline, said Gary Anderson, a consultant for the Marshall County board.
He recently told supervisors not enough counties are expecting to have to redraw supervisor district lines, so there is not much interest in a legislative bill to move qualifying deadline up.
Some counties that may be affected by shifting populations include Madison, DeSoto, Rankin and Lafayette, he said. Marshall and Tate counties may not have to move supervisor district boundaries.
“MAS says each county should start looking at statistics now - building permits and voter registrations the last 10 years - so when the county receives census data, it can more quickly act on it,” Anderson said. “I expect someone will dump a bill in the hopper in January but I do not think the bill will have enough support to move the candidate qualifying deadline forward.”
Supervisors asked about a local and private bill, but county administrator Larry Hall said that would come too late, close to March 1 when the session ends, to be of any use.
Anderson suggested the county begin to look at areas of growth and hold meetings in the districts that may be impacted, such as 2 and 3, areas in the north of the county experiencing the most growth the last decade. Meetings will satisfy public participation requirements of redistricting, he said.
In other business, chancery clerk Chuck Thomas announced that the Public Employees Retirement System contributions will likely be going up again in 2011. Currently employers contribute 12 percent of the employees’ salary into the fund and employees pay 9 percent. Thomas said there are currently about 160,000 employees paying into PERS and 80,000 retirees drawing checks.
Chancery and circuit clerks, however, are treated as self-employed and must contribute 21 percent or both the employer and employee sides into the fund. They also must pay both sides of the Social Security tax, Thomas said.
In other business, the Marshall County Board of Supervisors:
• discussed meeting with Benton County officials to work on a Marshall/Benton Alliance - similar to the Pontotoc/Union/Lee Alliance that successfully brought Toyota America to Blue Springs.
• heard a report of road and bridge work. With weather being satisfactory, paving has continued on Misty Ridge Road, off Isom Chapel Road, and on Hubbard Road, said Larry Hall, county administrator. A pipe that had washed out on Landfill Road is also being replaced.
• dedicated the November 1 board of supervisors meeting to the memory of Mary Gaiter, who lived to be 103 years of age. Gaiter was a resident of Wilson Golden Road in supervisor George Zinn’s district.
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