One-time bonus approved for sheriff’s office and road department

Published 5:46 pm Wednesday, December 12, 2018

The Chilton County Commission approved a resolution presented by Commissioner Allen Caton to give a one-time bonus to employees of the sheriff’s office and road department during its Dec. 12 meeting.

The sheriff’s office bonuses will not exceed $95,000, and the road department bonuses will not exceed $55,862 based on a 3-percent increase.

“These guys have been neglected every year,” Caton said. “Here we are with an opportunity.”

The one time bonus excludes new hires, which is defined by employees who have been with the sheriff’s office or road department for less than six months.

Commissioner Jimmie Hardee said he was not against giving the two departments bonuses but is also aware that they would have to define bonuses for the other departments.

“There’s going to be backlash, but that’s what we signed up for,” Commissioner Steve Langston said.

Langston asked Shearon when the last time was that the sheriff’s office received a bonus.

Shearon’s most recent recollection was in 2015 around the time he took over the position of sheriff.

The one-time bonuses were approved unanimously.

Blair Hart spoke during the public comments section of the meeting to discuss her concern that the sheriff’s office is understaffed and asked the Commission to provide them with more of a budget.

Hart lives in Montevallo on the Chilton County side of the boundary line, and she is concerned about the response time.

She mentioned a recent 30-minute response as an example and explained it as “good.”

Another concern of Hart’s was the closed bridge along County Road 868, which forces rescue personnel and police to take a longer route than if the bridge was opened.

Caton explained the bridge was closed after a ruling by Circuit Judge Sibley Reynolds deemed it unsafe for passage.

According to Commission Chairman Joseph Parnell, Chilton County is one of the few in the nation that does not have a sales tax that goes toward the county. The lack of such a sales tax affects the budgets of several county-related departments, such as the road department and sheriff’s office.

Hart thanked the Commission for listening to what she had to say and taking the time to explain it.

In other news from the meeting:

  • The Commission approved replacing two sets of courtroom doors for an estimated total of $12,000 or $6,000 apiece.
  • County Engineer Tony Wearren’s recommendation was approved of the preliminary plat of the River View Subdivision. It is a single-family development of six lots located off County Road 48 and is being developed by Wayne Hall of Jemison.
  • The Commission approved Wearren’s request to advertise and hire a truck driver to fill the position vacated by the retirement of Eddie Lockhart, effective Dec. 31.
  • A sheriff’s office line item transfer request was approved to move $15,000 from the R&M Motor Vehicle category to the Improvements Motor Vehicle category.
  • The resignation of full-time employee Sheree Tate was approved.
  • A request to reclassify Sheree Tate as a part-time jail employee effective Dec. 1 was approved.
  • Parnell resigned from the Capte Alternative Board (work force development board), and Caton motioned to suspend the rules to fill the seat.
  • Hardee nominated Whitney Barlow to fill seat vacated by Parnell on the Capte Alternative Board. Van Forrester will be Barlow’s alternate, while Pam Price will be Christina Brown’s alternate on the board.
  • Posting the video recordings of Commission meetings was postponed until after the first meeting in February, because the quality of the video is still being worked with.
  • The Commission approved to advertise for a public hearing for alcohol licenses for Dollar General in Enterprise, Dollar General in Montevallo and The Barking Frog in Maplesville. Hardee voted to oppose.
  • It was approved to authorize Parnell and County Administrator Sylvia Singleton as signers on the Marion Bank loan for the EMA vehicle.
  • A resolution was approved to pay bills that may become delinquent before the next meeting on Jan. 8.
  • The commission approved the minutes from the Nov. 27 meeting as is along with the addition of discussion of the EMA truck going to the Sheriff’s Office.
  • The commission approved to pay its bills.