• 77°

Wilcox County officially adopts $4.5 million budget

By Lucas Allison

Wilcox County Correspondent

At its regular monthly meeting on Tuesday night, the Wilcox County Board of Commissioners officially adopted the 2019 fiscal year budget of $4,531,400, following a public hearing that was

held on Monday.

With no opposition, there were no increases in this budget from 2018.

Andrew Sawyer, Wilcox Extension Coord/Agent reported on activities through his office for

July-September 2018.  He gave reports on peanut harvesting in progress, he advised that his office had conducted 120 farm visits, 395 phone calls and 502 office contacts during the period.

Mr. Sawyer was congratulated on his one-year anniversary as Wilcox County Agent on October 1.

Larry Brown, Wilcox EMA/Fire Director reported there was a countywide fire meeting held Monday night with all departments present except Pineview.  He stated that Skip Starling with National Fire Services and spoke with chiefs and firefighters on actions being taken to help lower the county ISO rating, reports that needed to filed and kept current, and gave an update on water study for the county.  Mr. Brown also stated a couple of pumps would need to be purchased for the tanker trucks to use in conjunction with dump pools.

The Comprehensive Plan Resolution was approved by the commissioners. Three bids were received for HVAC work and equipment for the Ag Center. Crisp Air, LLC bid $4950.00, Greg Ledford bid $6000 and Chastain HVAC $6440.50, and the commissioners approved the low bid from Crisp Air, LLC.

The commissioners then declared a 1993 Ford F150 pickup truck from the Road Dept. and old PA sound equipment donated by Superior Court judges as surplus property.  County Manager Paula Jones Ball will place the items along with a 2-week sealed bid ad on the county website at wilcoxcountygeorgia.com to offer them for sale.

County Manager Ball gave a report that Risk Management had conducted inspections of county properties and offices and had issued his report which she will distribute to affected departments for deficiencies to be corrected before a re-inspection will take place on October 23.

The commissioners then voted to go into Executive Session to discuss acquisition of real estate.  After the session it was voted to reopen the regular meeting.  Chairman Lanier Keene reported the real estate they discussed was the old High School Gym and ROTC building which the Board of Education had offered to donate for the use of the Wilcox Recreation department.  The commissioners voted unanimously to accept the real estate donation.

Mrs. Ruby Milling Naylor then addressed the commissioners regarding the upcoming meeting scheduled for December 4, 2018 with Mrs. Meagan Whitehead of Keep Georgia Beautiful Foundation.  She stated we need to advertise the event and need participation from the mayors and councils in Pitts, Pineview, Abbeville and Rochelle as well as civic groups, churches and school groups.

This meeting will be held to receive information on formation of a Keep Wilcox Beautiful Chapter to help clean and beautify our county.  Commissioner Keene stated possibly having the meeting at Ag Center which would make it convenient for all to attend, updates will be given as the date nears.

County Manager Ball reported that the county did pass a litter ordinance in 2015 with fines of $100 to $1000 per violation, however no process for the prosecution and collection of the fines was in the ordinance.  She stated she will be conferring with Magistrate Court Judge Shawn Rhodes to tweak the ordinance to correct this, so his court can process the violations and collection of fines. Currently the sheriff’s department is enforcing state litter laws for violators.

There being no further business the meeting was adjourned. The Wilcox Commission meets the 1st Tuesday of each month at 6:30pm in the Commissioners Office at the courthouse.  The next scheduled meeting will be Nov. 6, 2018.