By NATHAN GREGORY
The Oktibbeha County Board of Supervisors will consider authorizing the purchase of 15 new cars for the Sheriff’s Department at its meeting 9 a.m. meeting Monday at the county courthouse.
Sheriff Steve Gladney said he hopes the board will move forward with his request so he can replenish the department’s fleet.
“A lot of the cars have over 200,000 miles and the maintenance costs are getting to be pretty expensive on those,” Gladney said. “Hopefully we can get these new cars and sell some of the old ones we have to offset costs. These cars have a five-year, 100,000-mile warranty. We have several cars from 2002, 2003 and 2004 and if we could turn around and sell those it should put us in good shape.”
The board devoted $2,200,795 for the Sheriff’s Department in its fiscal year 12-13 budget, $178,946 more than in 2011-12, to help provide funding for new cars when the budget was approved Sept. 14.
District 2 Supervisor will discuss holding workshops designed to make sure the county keeps pace with its four-year road improvement plan. Developing plans to most efficiently manage every controllable aspect of the plan, he said, is the only way to make sure the project stays on schedule even when uncontrollable factors come into play.
“We’ve got more than we can do realistically. We’ve accomplished some good things but those pale in comparison to all the needs out there,” Trainer said. “We tried to get bonding done early in the term and that was not successful, but I think at the same time the board has realized we need to keep everything on track. Two things can throw our road plan off kilter: acquiring the right of way for different roads, and the other thing is weather. We need to see about getting additional dollars to contract projects out and improve the ones we have not been able to improve because of limited funds.”
Those additional dollars, he said, might have to be generated from a tax increase in the future, but he believes once county taxpayers see a plan to see where their dollars are going in terms of road reclaiming and building, they will embrace it.
“Capital improvement projects are good candidates for bond issues because they can stretch the cost over a long period of time, and the improvements will not depreciate. We could do it by adding millage or using existing revenue, but if we can add a mill or two we can have an even better project and be able to accomplish more. We may then decide to do maintenance out of our existing budget.”
Mike Slaughter, founder of Oxford-based urban planning firm Slaughter and Associates, will be on hand to explain the process of comprehensive planning and all the elements involved in accordance to Mississippi planning legislation and the significance of such a plan as it relates to future land use and county growth. He said a comprehensive plan would include a set of goals and objectives, a land use plan which identifies areas for development based on land use categories, a transportation plan and a community facilities plan.
In other board business, Oktibbeha County Emergency Response Agency director Jim Britt will present the county’s updated comprehensive emergency plan for adoption, which is reviewed annually and updated according to comply with revised federal and state guidelines.