County commission approves budget

Marengo County commissioners approved the 2013-2014 county budget at their meeting Tuesday morning.

Revenue from all sources is estimated to be $13,544,089.15; expenditures, $10,677,293.04. The difference in restricted funds is $2,866,796.11.

The budget goes into effect October 1,

Commissioners also approved a low bid of $148,368 from Assurance of Thomasville for the renovation of the old armory to house the county’s Economic Development Authority and the Marengo County Extension office.

While the bid was more than the county had budgeted, architect Eddie Griffith and Frank Dobson of the Alabama Tombigbee Regional Commission believed they could narrow the $18,818 gap by up to 10 percent.

County Engineer Ken Atkins opened bids for asphalt, pipe, fuel, stone, gravel and trucks. The commission voted to accept the lowest bids on each item once Atkins has a chance to evaluate each of the bids.

Commissioners also approved purchasing an SUV off the state bid list for Atkins’ use.

County attorney Woody Dinning Jr. said Demopolis City Schools had been chosen to receive a Quality Zone Assurance Bond for construction of a geo-thermal HVAC system at the high school. The interest-free bond requires the county to pass a resolution that it will continue to levy school taxes. The commission passed the resolution unanimously.

The commission approved Freddie Armstead’s request that the employee handbook be amended to require a 180-day probation period for new employees instead of 90 days.

Solid Waste Officer John Bell reported that court appearance notices have been sent to those county residents who have gotten off service or have not signed up.

In other business, the commission approved:

• Hiring Victoria Brown at the jail.

• The Tobacco Tax & EMA CD rate of .75 percent for six months with Sweet Water State Bank.

• The Grand Jury Report

• A resolution updating CDBG Procurement Standards, Standards of Conduct and Citizen Participation Plan. The change, which complies with state law, pertains to approval of small purchases, raising the limit from $7,500 first set in 1987 to $15,000.

• A confirmation presented by Probate Judge Laurie Hall for her office to keep its own account to cover Insufficient Check Funds. Hall said the action was needed for auditing purposes.