Boshears tries to rescind raise; motion fails

-A A +A
By Jennifer Caldwell

 Despite the ever present potential for lengthy, contentious meetings, commissioners managed to get down to business at Monday’s commission meeting.

When Commissioner Melvin Boshears introduced a motion to rescind the previously approved salary increase for Finance Director Jeff Marlow, there was virtually no discussion.

Commission Chairman David Young reminded Boshears undoing the previous action would require at least 10 yes votes.

“You must have a strong majority of 10 votes for this motion to pass,” Young explained.

Boshears’ motion failed in a 7-7 vote.

After hearing from Archery Lane property owners Bill and Sandra Goss during last week’s workshop, Commissioner David Goins made a motion for the county’s highway department to tar and chip the road in question at a cost of $15,000.

In exchange for the improvements to the road the Goss’ are willing to convey ownership of the roadway to the county at no cost.

As the group prepared to vote on Goins’ motion, Commissioner Whit Goins requested to amend the motion.

According to Whit Goins, he had made previous requests for paving jobs in his district but was denied on the grounds that he didn’t have a cost estimate for the project.

In his amendment Whit Goins asked the commission to approve an additional $150,000 for his paving projects.

Amid snickers and whispers, Whit Goins request for an amendment was voted down 13-1.

While the commission voted in favor of going forward with tarring and chipping Archery Lane, Commissioner Adrion Baird pointed out if the budget and finance committee fails to approve funding of the project the motion will die.

Young continued to keep tight control on the meeting when Commissioner Scott Kitts attempted to make a motion to repeal the county’s wheel tax.

Kitts argued the tax was intended to be temporary, however, Young disagreed.

“I was down here 20 years ago and no one ever said it (the wheel tax) was going to be temporary,” Young said.

Young warned Kitts that unless he had a suggestion for how to replace the funding for education that is currently generated by the wheel tax, there would be no further discussion.

“I’m not going to entertain a motion to abolish this unless you can come up with an alternative funding source,” the chairman stated.

Marlow advised that doing away with the wheel tax entirely would translate into approximately 23 cents in property tax increases.

“Are you willing to adopt a 22 or 23 cent property tax increase?” Young asked Kitts, who responded he would not be willing to do so.

After failing to gain a second on adopting a uniform nepotism policy for the county in an earlier rules and ethics committee meeting, Commissioner Lynn Letner made another attempt to take action on the matter with the full commission.

Letner’s attempts were shut down, when he was informed that because his motion failed to gain a second in the committee meeting the full commission would be unable to take it up.

Young encouraged Letner to take the issue back to the rules and ethics committee for further discussion. Letner stressed that adoption of a nepotism policy he has repeatedly brought before the commission with little support.