The Terry County Commissioners meet in regular session on July 24 at 10:00 am in the basement of the Courthouse.
Krystal Valentin, Elections Clerk, came to the Commissioners with an idea to help save the County some money during elections. Valentin needs 3 workers to work the election during the nine early voting days from 8:30 am to 5:00 pm and one day from 8:30 am to 7:00 pm, along with one Saturday during early voting, from 8:00 am to 12:00 pm. The cost to hire out those workers would be $3,210.
Valentin’s idea is to take one County employee from each office (that is not on the ballot) and have them work for half a day, each day during early voting. This would allow Valentin to cut back to one translator during the week and hire out workers for Saturday. This would cut the cost of election workers down to $980, a savings of $2230. If Valentin was able to do this for the Primary Election, Primary Run-off Election and the General Election it would save the County $5540 a year.
Elected officials cannot work and Valentin would have to hire help on Election day.
Karen Grigsby, Treasurer said they had just amended the employee handbook to read if someone works the election they have to use vacation time to do so, she asked how that would play into this. Wagner stated they would be drawing their regular pay so it would not count towards vacation. Sheriff Gilbreath said they could assign them to work there. Valentin said on Saturday and after 5:00 pm it would be her staff and a translator or they would hire someone working election day so that it would not come out of overtime pay. Valentin said she would work with the offices to make a schedule so that it would work with each offices schedules as well. She also said if an elected position is on the ballot but does not have an opponent then that office could be added to the rotation.
Valentin said, “I love hiring my people but if we need to save money this is kind of the only way.” She said election workers are her biggest expense.
Commissioner John Franks said it would be up to the different offices as to whether or not they agree to let their employees help. Auditor Jan Hudson said she was fine with sending one of her personnel to help, Judge Wagner agreed saying if it would help save money he was for it. Kim Carter, County Clerk, Grigsby and Gilbreath all agreed that it would work for their offices. Hudson stated, “that is what we’re here for, is to work together.”
Gilbreath said he was willing to send a bi-lingual person from his office so that they wouldn’t have to pay for a translator.
Franks made a motion and Kirby Keesee seconded it, the motion passed.
The Commissioners then heard from Grigsby about amending the first quarter budget report. Grigsby was working on the second quarter investment report when she discovered an error on the first quarters budget report. One of the figures was put in as a plus instead of a minus. Grigsby stated it did not effect the interest earned for the first quarter or the investment report, it was in the cash balances. Grigsby brought the amended report and asked the Commissioners to sign and approve the amendment.
The Commissioners also approved the second quarter investment report.
In regular business they voted to pay the bills and approved the minutes from the last meeting and budget hearing. They also approved the monthly reports from County Judge J.D. Butch Wagner, Terry County Sheriff Larry Gilbreath and the Ag Extension Office. The monthly report from Justice of the Peace Angie P. Garza was tabled.
The Sheriff said the jail has received 10 prisoners from Ector County and is expecting more this week. There are 114 prisoners total in the jail as of the morning of July 24.
Commissioners voted on the the imposition of optional fees for 2018 for the Tax Accessor-Collector. Rexann Furlow recommended that the fee stay at $10 and the commissioners agreed that was fine with them. They voted and the motion passed.
Commissioners voted to have a closed meeting on August 14, 2017 to talk with David Partlow from BIDC.
The next Commissioners Court will be August 14 at 10:00 am in the Courthouse basement.
All Commissioners were present.