County Commission provides funds for Bethesda House

Published 7:30 am Wednesday, January 26, 2022

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The Covington County Commission addressed a number of topics at a regularly scheduled meeting Tuesday.

The commission approved a motion to take a total of $2,500 from contingency funds as an appropriation for the Bethesda House.

“We received a request for an appropriation from the Bethesda House. They did not specify an amount but will appreciate anything given to them at this time. They understand this is not budget time right now because budgets are so far in the past,” Administrator Karen Sowell said.

Chairman Greg White added that the Bethesda House has been established for some time.

“It did take them a little while to get their feet on the ground. They are in good hands and have a strong board that is involved at this time. They certainly are meeting the needs of a number of women and children who typically are in abusive relationships and need somewhere to get away. I think it would certainly be appropriate if we step up and support them on some level and give them some time to get further funding and stability,” White said.

The commission agreed to consider additional funding at a future meeting when Bethesda House representatives would be able to make a presentation highlighting their needs in greater detail.

The commission approved a motion to modify the purchase method of two Ford F-150 pickups requested in May 2021. The original bid by J.M. Jackson in Sanford was rejected at the request of J.M. Jackson, who is unable to deliver the trucks due to a vehicle shortage. The commission approved purchasing the vehicles off the state bid, which is with Stivers Ford in Montgomery.

“These are 2011 trucks we are driving with approximately 200,000 miles on them. We do have them sold to the county (maintenance department) who will primarily use them here in town,” Revenue Commissioner Chuck Patterson said.

Patterson also gave an update on operations at the Revenue Commissioner’s office. “Everything is going really well, and we still have $600,000 left to collect out of $12.6 million in property taxes. We’re good and will be sending out notices to those next month.”

In other business:

  • The commission approved out-of-state travel for two county drug task force officers to take a single vehicle to Norcross, Georgia in March for school classes. Commission policy states that any out-of-state travel by County officials or employees must be approved by the commission at an open meeting.
  • The commission approved the purchase of five dump trucks with 16-foot ox bodies at a cost of $165,000 each for a total amount of $825,000 under the county’s joint bid program.
  • The commission approved a motion to solicit short-term leases for seven used motor-graders until November when newer models are scheduled to be delivered.
  • The commission approved to award a bid to Andalusia Farmers Co-op for seed and fertilizer, which was the only bidder.

The next meeting of the Covington County Commission will be held Tuesday, Feb. 8, 9 a.m., at the Covington County Administration Building. The public is invited to attend.