Commission contract still being negotiated

Published 9:50 am Thursday, December 15, 2011

Although the County Commission agreed to enter into a contract with E-911 at the last meeting, a formal agreement has not yet been signed.

County attorney Levi Nichols said that he has been attempting to contact attorney Mark Ryan, who drew up the proposed agreement between the county and E-911 to handle non-emergency dispatching, but that Nichols hadn’t been able to reach him.

“There’s some language that needs to be addressed,” Nichols said. “I wouldn’t feel alright with the Commission signing this contract.”

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Nichols said he had amended the contract and sent a copy to Ryan.

In other business, the Commission heard from Michael Stubbs of Hodges, Harbin, Newberry and Tribble, Inc., a civil and environmental consulting firm from Macon, Ga.

The Commission contracted with HHNT for additional consultation about the county landfill.

In late 2010, the county was fined $27,500 by the Alabama Department of Environmental Management for violations at the landfill.

Since that time, county engineer Benjie Sanders and several commissioners have met with ADEM and worked to bring the landfill up to code.

Stubbs told the Commission that there has been a statistically significant increase in particles regulated by ADEM at wells near the landfill.

Stubbs said that wells are tested both upgradient from the landfill and downgradient, and that one upgradient well is dry and another is mostly dry. He also said that the casing on a downgradient well is broken, which could lead to outside contamination.

“I feel like installing three new wells will cost between $5,000 and $10,000 per well,” he said. “It’s going to cost money, but it’s aimed at not endangering anyone downstream if we have a problem. The cost will increase at the landfill as you go through the regulatory process.”

The Commission will meet again with ADEM in January.

The Commission also voted to allow Sexton Agency to manage the county’s Section 125 cafeteria plan insurance.

Allen Sexton spoke to the Commission during the work session and outlined his company’s plan for life and other insurances.

County employees will have the option to use the Sexton Agency or stay with Liberty National.

The Commission also heard from Sanders about the county’s additional road funding for 2011.

The county received $652,930 in Industrial Access Funds and Special State Funds for widening, leveling and treating Bodiford Pool Road, C.R. Morgan Road and Quail Tower Road for use as emergency detour routes for Highway 331.

The county also received $350,000 through an ADECA Community Development Block Grant for reclamation and water line relocation on Tucker Road, giving a total of $1,002,930 combined for both projects.

“I think the commission and Rep. Charles Newton ought to be commended for the work they did to get us these grants,” Sanders said. “He went to bat for us twice to get that $652,000.”

The Commission voted to send Newton a letter of thanks.

In other road business, the Commission voted to begin the process of closing Last Chance Road between Dozier and Brantley.

Sanders said he had been petitioned by the two adjacent land owners. He said neither Highway 29 nor Old Dozier Road would be affected.

“I don’t see it causing a problem from a traveling standpoint,” Sanders said.

The Commission will not meet on Dec. 26 due to the Christmas holidays.

The next meeting is scheduled for Jan. 9.