Supervisors split votes on proposed pay raises

Published 10:36 am Friday, October 5, 2018

The Panola County Board of Supervisors met routinely Friday, covering general business before moving into executive session to discuss litigation on pending legal cases, hear progress about an ongoing economic development project, and to discuss proposed pay increases in the Sheriff’s Department.

Frances Bryant with Air Med Care updated the board about their agreement to provide all county employees with the emergency air transport. The board pays for the service as a benefit for everyone on county payroll.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

The board voted 3-2, with supervisors Cole Flint and John Thomas dissenting, to increase salaries in the Solid Waste Department. The raises came from savings realized when a full time employee retired and three remaining employees opted to take on added duties and pay increases. County Administrator Kate Victor said the savings of not replacing the retired worker, including giving the department head a raise, would be almost $32,000.

Neither Flint nor Thomas indicated they were opposed to the extra work being divided with some pay increase, but were not satisfied the duties and money was being allocated properly. Thomas added that he couldn’t vote for the pay raise in one department when deputies and other lawmen should have increases.

The board also gave Victor permission to advertise a garbage truck for sale the county has replaced.

Supervisors heard an update from Road Manager Lygunnah Bean about the cutoff road near Pope School. The Green family claim they own the property and the road is not an official road. Legal questions have yet to be answered about who really owns the road – the county has maintained the passage for decades – and supervisors were advised that the Greens have not yet blocked off the road.

Bean said he had several agreeable conversations about the road with the family, and he believed something was going to be worked out. Board attorney Gaines Baker advised he had just heard from a Senatobia lawyer who has apparently been retained to represent the Greens. The board will hear more about the matter in its next meeting.

Bean also asked the board for direction on the maintenance of a road in the Sadis Industrial Park. It is a short road that the county kept up for years, but has not been serviced in years because trucks no longer used it. INCA Presswoods needs to use the road and has requested the county repair the road with graders and some gravel. The board agreed to service the road with no debate.

Supervisors also voted to re-appoint the current members of the Grenada Rail Executive Committee. They are: Daniel Cole, Jerry Autrey, Stan Harrison, Judy Gravett, Lula Palmer, Danny Holland, John Howell, Sr., Benjamin Webb, Arlene Simpson, and Tracy Pickett.