Wellness Center insurance, road maintenance equipment topic at fiscal court meeting

Posted April 10, 2013 at 2:12 pm

Clinton County Fiscal Court held a special call meeting last Wednesday morning, April 3 with five of six members present. Three items of business, plus personnel, were on the agenda for the approximate one-hour meeting.

Also present was Albany Mayor Nicky Smith and some members of the Twin Lakes Family Wellness Center Board, as the facility’s insurance was about to elapse. Should that have happened, due to liability reasons, the building may have had to close until insurance was obtained.

The situation, however, was handled prior to the meeting’s end when Pastor Bobby Grant, a representative of the Wellness Center board, was able to contact an insurance carrier and secure a rider on the policy to keep liability insurance intact on the facility’s equipment.

Also, the court voted unanimously to expend $5,200 for the liability insurance cost on the property and appurtenant attachments to the building, following a motion by Magistrate Hershell Key. Grant, in answering an earlier question by Judge/Executive Lyle Huff, responded “yes” when asked if the Wellness Center had enough money to pay the liability insurance. Grant also noted there were two companies working up quotes.

Apparently the current policy is for $3.5 million on the building itself and a half-million on equipment, furniture, etc.

The discussion on the insurance also brought up some brief discussion on the recent financial struggles the Wellness Center board has encountered.

Pastor Grant, again, said the major problem was the boiler that was installed in the facility was too large and currently a mechanical engineer is assessing that and other problems and is expected to have his studies complete within a few days.

Magistrate Ricky Riddle indicated the study itself may not help much, saying they would have to go a different route–from having the boiler. Apparently building specifications required putting in a larger boiler than necessary.

One option again mentioned to the high cost of running the boiler was to possibly switch to natural gas.

Riddle also said the facility needed to have a regular heating and cooling system that could be checked and maintenance handled by local people.

The assessment the mechanical engineer is currently working on at the Wellness Center is expected to be complete soon and results will probably be discussed with board members at the court’s regular meeting next week.

Road funds and the road department was then discussed by the court.

At the last regular meeting in March, it was announced that each magistrate would have approximately $30,000 for state road aid money to spend in each district. However, at least two magistrates–Ricky Craig and Terry Buster–indicated they wanted their portions to go to the local road department for much needed equipment.

At last week’s special meeting, Judge Huff informed magistrates there was enough funds from the state for each district to have $40,000 to use on road resurfacing and also the road fund was well off enough for an expenditure of about $150,000 that could be used for equipment, without having to spend any allocated funds from use of road repairs.

During the current fiscal year, the county has transferred or “borrowed” money from the road fund–which is a restricted fund. However, all money transferred from the road to general fund has to be paid back, by law, to the road fund by the end of the fiscal year, which in this case, is June 30.

Apparently with the added funds that will be coming back into the road department by the end of June, the equipment can be afforded and used in the next 2013-14 fiscal year.

A motion was eventually made to authorize an expenditure of $150,000 from the road department to be used on purchasing equipment in the upcoming fiscal year, which begins July 1, for the road equipment purchases. The motion passed by unanimous vote.

Another issue that arose from the previous meeting was that of the appointment of a member to serve on the Extension Service board.

During last month’s regular session, in the absence of the judge/executive, his recommended person, Tommy Guffey, nor another person nominated by a magistrate, were seated as neither motion (one on each recommendation) failed due to the lack of a second to the motions.

Judge Huff told court members that Guffey was appointed to the board five years ago and after serving his term had not been appointed to any other county appointed boards. He again recommended Guffey for the position and was seated, following a motion by Magistrate Patty Guinn.

Prior to adjourning, the court entered into a half-hour closed session to discuss personnel but took no action upon returning to open session.

The next regular meeting of Clinton Fiscal Court is scheduled for next Thursday, April 18 at 5 p.m. at the courthouse and is open to the general public.