In July 22 Issue
By Derek AaronTimes Journal Reporter
The city of Jamestown reaffirmed their stance that helping the county fund the emergency 911 and dispatch service is not in their plans, saying it is up to the Fiscal Court to find ways to fund the service.
Mayor Brooks Bates read parts of a letter the city had received from the Fiscal Court that requested their financial support at dispatch. The city of Russell Springs received the same letter earlier this month.
"My position has been the same as it has always, that our citizens in Jamestown pay taxes, all types of county taxes, and that the 911 service is a county function," Bates said.
The mayor pointed out that one way the county could attain funding for the service would be to increase the county occupational tax.
"I think there are avenues open," he said. "To me, I think (the county) needs to find a way to fund it … I think it is within their scope."
Councilwoman Marcelene Taylor suggested that dispatch undergo an audit after their last one in December of 2008 to help shore up any discrepancies in the budget.
The EMS Board did vote earlier last week to hire a Glasgow firm that will conduct audits of the previous two fiscal years.
According to the city council's meeting agenda, they were expecting representatives from the Fiscal Court to speak to the group on the issue, but no magistrates or the county judge-executive made it to the meeting.
In other happenings at the meeting:
• The council heard and passed the second reading of an ordinance concerning the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
"This is for us to be able to get funds from FEMA if there is ever a disaster," Bates said. "We have to be in accord with them."
The mayor thanked Emergency Management Director H.M. Bottom for his work on issues like these.
"He really looks after us and advises is and we appreciate it," he said.
• Councilwoman and Lakefest chair Marcelene Taylor said the celebration earlier this month on Monument Square was a success and "the best one we've had."
"We had good attendance each night and the weather cooperated with us," she said.
Taylor thanked local media for their coverage of the event as well as all the city employees and volunteers that helped to put the event on.
"I haven't heard a negative thing," Bates said of the event. "It was all positives."
Councilman Larry Joe Murray then thanked Taylor for her services as the chairperson for the event, which made its return this year after a one-year hiatus.
• Public Works Director Ottis Skaggs said workers at the water plant continue to flush lines to try and improve the taste of city water after the recent lack of rain prompted algae growth deeper in the lake, which in turn changes the way the water tastes after it runs through the water treatment plant.
"We pulled our intakes again … it is going to get better, it will just take a little while but we are making every effort to make it right," Skaggs said.