Commission deals with security
After their December break, the Marshall County Commission returned to work on Monday night, addressing a long-term issue and approving a measure with long term benefits.
Commissioners approved the installation and manning of x-ray and metal-detecting equipment at the entrance to the Marshall County Courthouse.
Courthouse officials and employees have questioned the lack of security screening in the building for several years, especially in the wake of widely publicized violent incidents at courthouses and other government buildings nationwide.
Grant funds from the state Court Security Grant Program, totaling just over $25,000, will offset some of the equipment costs of an x-ray machine and magnetometers.
The county agreed a contract with G4S, a private security company, to staff and operate the security checkpoint.
Commissioners approved the transfer of just under $135,000 from the county’s administration of justice account to fund other equipment costs and cover the cost of the private contractor.
The commission also approved the payoff of two series of county general obligation bonds from 2011 and 2013.
The county has the $3.3 million needed to pay off the bonds in the debt service fund and can apply it to paying off the bonds early without impacting their ability to meet regular bond payments.
In total, retiring the bonds early will result in a savings to the county debt service fund of just under $400,000 over the next ten years.
The bulk of the bonds were issued for general government use, with smaller amounts for streets and highways and education.
The commission also approved the submission of a notice to the state, regarding the county’s compliance with the American’s with Disabilities Act.
The county has completed an ADA self-evaluation plan and is moving forward with a transition plan to adopt those recommendations.
Commissioners approved the application for a Community Development Block Grant as well, earmarked, if selected for the award, to extend water lines along Robertson Road, Dean Road, Haislip Hollow Road, and Virgil Beasley Road.
Total cost of the proposed projects is $743,000. The grant, administered by the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development, would cover $525,000, with the $218,000 balance provided by the Marshall County Board of Public Utilities.
The commission’s agenda initially included a revised request from the Rogers Group to rezone two parcels of land adjoining their Pottsville quarry to allow for expansion of their operations.
This is the second attempt to rezone the two parcels.
Their initial request to rezone approximately 300 acres met with resistance from residents living close to the quarry, concerned about vibration and noise from blasting and other associated issues.
That request was not acted upon by the commission after the Planning Commission voted to give the request an unfavorable recommendation.
The new request is for the same two parcels, but only roughly 150 acres.
The revised request was moved to the commission’s February agenda.
Weather conditions forced the cancellation of the Planning Commission meeting last Tuesday, and rezoning requests require a hearing before the Planning Commission before being presented to the County Commission for a vote.
The commission passed two resolutions requesting that the state legislature approve the naming of two county bridges, one on State Route 272 as the “William Harold and Lucille Fitzgerald Farler Memorial Bridge” and another on State Route 11 over East Rock Creek as the “F.C. ‘Buddy’ Musgrave, Jr. Memorial Bridge.”