The Jeff Davis County Commission is having the same problems with personnel as many local businesses have: finding people who want to work and keeping people who are working.
The county has been advertising to find two people to work with the county road department but there have been few, if any, takers.
“I’d like to know how many people we’ve hired since we’ve been in office and they quit,” said Hazlehurst District Commissioner James Benjamin ] at last Tuesday’s commission meeting. “What are we doing wrong that we can’t keep people on the job?”
“That’s the question everyone around here asks,” said Blackburn Commissioner Hank Hobbs. “Why doesn’t anyone want to work and why they can’t keep them.”
Benjamin expressed his concern about the wording in the advertisement seeking employees.
“That thing looked pretty rough,” he said of the advertisement. “When I read it, I felt I would be scared to take the job.”
He questioned who worded the ad and why it was run without the commissioners looking at it first. Hobbs explained that it was just the same ad the county has run in the past.
After discussion, the commissioners voted to hire two new employees for the road department when and if they can be found.
With three new county fire stations now completed and ready to equip, Fire Chief Charles Wasdin came to the commissioners seeking permission to purchase three firetrucks. He said at the present he and County Administrator Keith Carter were looking at two used trucks that meet the necessary specifications. Both are priced at $50,000. One has 50,000 miles on it and the other 24,000.
Wasdin said he took two mechanics to go over the trucks and operate them and they felt the trucks were in great shape.
Commission Chairman Jerry Wooten said the plan was to borrow the money to purchase the trucks and repay the loans from Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax receipts.
The commissioners granted Wasdin’s request.
In other action, the commissioners ….
…. renewed a resolution to enact Freeport Amendment status in the county.
…. approved the 2018-2019 budget resolution.
…. renewed a lease agreement for juvenile and probation office space in the James Carter Building.
…. appointed Mary Susan Arnold to the Recreation Commission to replace Keith Rea, whose term had expired.
…. renewed the Department of Corrections contract for inmate labor at the same cost.
…. approved Tax Commissioner Susie Kersey’s request to purchase software and computers which the state requires to be in place by Sept. 1. The commissioners approved the low bid from M&M Computers.
…. agreed by consensus to begin the process of closing Sally McNair Road. Hobbs said he had a letter from landowners along the road saying it is okay to close it.
…. discussed Bennett Road off Towns Bluff Road. Carter and County Attorney Carla Powell will check on getting the road deeded to the county so it can be maintained by the county.