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Court finalizes their portion of interlocal agreement
In Oct. 14 Issue
By Derek Aaron
Times Journal Editor

After working through some kinks on their side, the fiscal court gave their final go-ahead to a revised 911 Dispatch-Ambulance Service agreement at Monday night's regular meeting of county leaders.

As it currently stands, the fiscal court is set to pay $4,500 per month with the EMS and both Russell Springs and Jamestown contributing $2,000 each month. If the plan, in fact, goes forward that would come to $126,000 annually and would be added to around $150,000 CMRS money received from the state through a wireless phone tax.  That total of around $276,000 is enough to pay for the bare minimum of dispatch to run as it has in the past.

Ambulance Board Chairman James Gray told the court at the meeting that he had spoken with an electrician and received an estimate of $2,500 to $3,000 on rewiring the basement of the EMS building where dispatch is located so the basement of the building could be run off of a separate electrical meter. That would allow the ambulance service to pay for only the electricity they use while the county would be responsible for the dispatch electricity bill.

The court agreed and voted to have the building's basement rewired in the coming weeks. When that is done, the generator will power dispatch for the amount of time power may be down.

"I can't speak for the other board members but from my part, everything else in (the agreement) is good," Gray said. "I don't see a problem with it."

County leaders also discussed the pay rates for dispatch but decided that this issue should go in front of the LINK board since they will be the ones doing the hiring and firing of personnel at dispatch.

911 Director Terra McQueary was also voted on by the court to be given a county-paid cell phone once the transition takes place early next week. McQueary has had her cell phone paid for by the ambulance service in the past.

Near the end of the meeting, Jeff Warner of the Lake Cumberland Natural Gas Authority presented the court with a check for $25,000 due to the success of the authority has had over the past decade. The money comes from around 200 commercial and residential natural gas customers.

"If things go as they should, hopefully we can do this again," Warner said. "I think this is a good example of the two cities and the county working together."

Following Warner's presentation, the court voted to deposit the $25,000 into the new 911-Dispatch account to help shore things up if any unforeseen events occur. Magistrate Ronald Johnson made the motion while it was seconded by Magistrate Jimmy McQueary.

As it stands now, the ambulance service has around $47,000 in the bank.

In other happenings at the meeting:

o Union Chapel Elementary's 5th grade won the county competition to name the former Alligator 1 Boat Dock as the Lake Cumberland Recreation Center. The county had leased the property and had to change the name of the area. For their choosing of the winning name, the UCES 5th grade will receive $100 from the fiscal court.

o During the paying of the monthly bills, Magistrate Greg Popplewell questioned the recent $30,414 paving of Dixon Cemetery Rd. in Magistrate Steve Bledsoe's district. After a heated discussion with Garner, Popplewell voted alongside the rest of the court to pay the bills as two roads in his district, KLG and Creekside Drive, were next to be paved.  The court also approved payment of the new detention center bills and the Ross Sinclair jail bond, which makes way for the first payment of the new jail in December.

o A telephone contract with Duo County was accepted by the court for the new detention center which will allow Duo to go ahead with the installation of new lines to the facility that will allow video conferencing, Internet and phone use in the jail's offices. The court also entered into a service contract with Swanson to provide amenities at the new jail, when needed.

o The court heard and accepted the jail report by Garner. Garner said the medical co-pay was $413.15, telephone reimbursement was $691.68 and total income was $1,104.83 while the payment to Casey County for housing local inmates was $21,373. Adair County's Detention Center also received a payment of around $8,000 for housing several local inmates.

o Vicky White, who was working as a part-time transportation officer, was hired by the court on a fulltime basis to accommodate the need by the transportation officers to have another female officer. This addition means three men and three women are working for the county as transportation officers.

o The court approved buying an $850 advertisement in the Lake Cumberland tourism brochure marketed by the tourism commission and director John Carter. The purchase of the ad had been tabled a month ago before the court decided to go ahead with the purchase. Magistrate Steve Bledsoe was the lone dissenting vote.

o Magistrate Greg Popplewell said Treviicos-Soletanche, the company working on Wolf Creek Dam, was interested in buying their road salt, approximately 100-150 tons, from the county during the winter months. That move would allow the county to store extra salt to be used, if needed, during inclement weather this winter.

The county currently has a contract to get their road salt for $78.15 per ton.

o The court approved to transfer $30,000 from the general fund into the jail fund.

At the regularly scheduled meeting of the Russell County Property Development Board on Monday there were not enough board members present to constitute a quorum, therefore an official board meeting was not held.

However, those present including PDB Chairman Mickey Garner, PDB Member Gail Wilson, representatives of Branscum-Pepper Construction, and Brandstetter and Caroll architectural firm did discuss judicial center project status and selected the color of windows for the building.

Proposal requests were presented for approval by Sandra Honaker with Branscum-Pepper Construction. Since there was no quorum, no action was taken.

The next meeting of the board is scheduled Monday, November 8th at noon at Jamestown Café.

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