| By Billy Davis
The topic of cleaning up Panola County’s roadsides resurfaced at the supervisors’ "second Monday" meeting in Batesville, where District 2 Supervisor Robert Avant raised the subject after surveying his roads.
"The garbage is still bad," said Avant. "It seems like the more we pick up, the more they throw out."
Panola County road manager Lygunnah Bean said the road department discovered and cleaned up an illegal dump on Cline Road.
"It was so bad it looked like a furniture factory," Bean told the board.
The topic of cleaning up the county’s roads comes after a volunteer clean-up program headed by Bean, Clean Up Panola, cleaned up dozens of roads over the spring and summer.
The clean-up effort, performed by volunteers, slowed down when the weather turned wet and cold.
Reached after the meeting, Bean said Clean Up Panola would kick off again in the spring with a renewed effort to organize teams of volunteers.
During the winter months, Bean said, county inmates have endured the weather to clean up the roadsides.
"The inmates have been picking up thousands of bags of garbage," Bean said. "People might clean up in front of their homes or around their neighborhood, but these guys get the whole entire road. It’s something to see."
At the board meeting, Bean reminded supervisors that they were given a proposed garbage ordinance that would address the lingering problem of illegal dumping.
"Tate County has got this ordinance and is doing well with it," he said.
Sheriff’s deputy Bobby Walton, who patrols the dump sites, proposed the ordinance last spring.
On the subject of enforcement, Sheriff Hugh "Shot" Bright suggested hiring a second deputy to patrol the dump site. That idea was shot down by District 4 Supervisor Jerry Perkins.
"It’s education, Sheriff," Perkins said. "Just like we teach kids not to smoke, we need to be teaching them not to throw out garbage."
|In other county business:
||Supervisors took under advisement a list of "disaster response needs" suggested by the Panola County Civil defense office.
The list included items such as generators, radios, a rescue boat, and an urban response vehicle. The total cost of the 17-item list was $262,060.
"We realize none of this is budgeted, so this is just for your future consideration," said Daniel Cole, the deputy civil defense director.
Avant said he will inquire if Homeland Security funds can help pay for some of the requested items.
|| Sheriff Hugh "Shot" Bright presented supervisors with an interlocal agreement signed by the City of Batesville that lends their support to the Panola Drug Task Force.
The county and city have been hashing out the funding and oversight of the task force in recent weeks.
Bright noted that the City of Sardis has budgeted $1,200 to the task force.
|| Crenshaw Auction Company representative Harold Crenshaw pitched the service of his company.
Supervisors and Bright had earlier balked at putting county equipment in the Crenshaw auction but now say they will participate in a March event.
"We’ve got an excellent track record," Crenshaw told supervisors.
|| Supervisors took under advisement several bids during a 10 a.m. bid opening. The bid items included gravel and rock hauling, rental fees for heavy equipment, and bank deposits for the county’s treasury.