Audit committee members selected
Three members of the community were appointed to the county’s Audit Committee last Thursday during the County Commission’s regular monthly meeting.
Three members of the community were appointed to the county’s Audit Committee last Thursday during the County Commission’s regular monthly meeting. Commissioners also voted to allow County Executive Hoyt Firestone to accept an Historic Preservation Grant to begin work on replacing the windows in the courthouse. At the end of the meeting, Polk County News Editor and Publisher Cheryl Buehler was asked about a recent article on the need for a new roof at Benton Elementary.
Joe Waters, Kenneth Cloud, and Greg Barker were appointed to the Audit Committee. Board Chairman Isaac Bramblett suggested nominations be done by district. Sheena Gaddis suggested nominations be made based on qualifications regardless of district. John Pippenger nominated Joe Waters, Greg Brooks nominated Kenneth Cloud, Gaddis nominated William Bracken, and Pippenger nominated Greg Barker.
James Woody asked if the state had said no member of the budget committee could be on the committee. Brooks asked if it was “should not,” or “could not,” and asked if any members of the budget committee had been appointed. Woody said the entire commission was on the budget committee, but that technically no one had been appointed to the committee yet.
Waters and Barker were unanimously voted in. Bracken, the only applicant in attendance at the meeting, was nominated but received only four “yes” votes from the commission. James Woody, Randy Collins, Sheena Gaddis, and Isaac Bramblett voted yes for Bracken; Greg Brooks, Mike Curbow, and Wendall Lewis passed; John Pippenger and Daren Waters voted against Bracken. Cloud received five “yes” votes. Pippenger, Brooks, Bramblett, Waters, and Curbow voted yes; Collins and Lewis passed; Woody and Gaddis voted against.
Bramblett said the appointment of commissioners to the committee would be put on next month’s agenda.
All commission members voted to allow Firestone to accept grant money for new windows at the Polk County Courthouse. Firestone said the county would be required to match 40% of the grant. He said $60,000 was requested, but $25,000 was awarded and only a portion of the windows could be done. He said the proposal was to do aluminum frames and thermal glass. The design and specifications may have to be tweaked a little once the plans are submitted to the Historical Commission.
According to Firestone, maintenance funds were used in the past to paint and seal all the windows, but most of the metal is rusted and the problems will reoccur. He said there are about 55-60 windows in the building and some were taller than other, some were meant to open and some were not. He said the west side had more and bigger windows.
After business had been conducted, Brooks asked newspaper editor Cheryl Buehler about the tone of comments made during a school board meeting held last week. Brooks asked how the comments were made and whether or not the school board was saying if the roof fell on the kids it would be all the commission’s fault. Buehler said she did not think that was the implication, but that the implication was it would be up to the commission to replace the roof. She said she thought the catalyst was a recent roof collapse in another county with a similar building.
Pippenger asked if the school board had mentioned anything at the meeting about any kind of funding of their own for the roof. Buehler said no mention was made. She said Gary Silvers had a notebook of pictures and information at the meeting and he said he planned to give it to the commission. Brooks asked if he was the one crying or the one who could not sleep at night. He said the building committee would look into the issue.
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