County Commission back to full strength


The regular meeting of the Emanuel County Board of Commissioners was held on Monday, April 15, 2024, at the John C. Coleman County Office Building. Commissioners present were Chairman Hugh Foskey, Kawame Coleman, Timmy Oliver, Jim Sherrod and Ricky Thomp-son. Following the Invocation and Pledge of Allegiance, Chairman Foskey welcomed all pre-sent and expressed a special welcome to newly installed Commissioner Kawame Coleman who now represents District 1. In the first agenda item for the meeting, an update was pro-vided by District Attorney Tripp Fitzner on the move of his department from the John C. Coleman County Building into temporary offices on Jefferson Street. Fitzner reported that the major portion of office operations has already been relocated to the temporary building. On financial matters, he commented on the challenge posed by reduced funding from the state which has resulted from a decrease in fine monies collected statewide. He advised commis-sioners that traditional grant money from the federal government was down as well this year. Fitzner commented that this was the first time he, as D.A., has ever asked for an in-crease in funding from the county, but suggested that such action be considered. A motion was made and passed for the recent federal grant money to be accepted by the county on be-half of the District Attorney’s Office. Commissioners had several questions for the D.A., con-cerning staffing and general operations of the office. Fitzner replied he was very satisfied with the level of performance and especially proud of the high percentage of cleared cases by the department in the past year. Sheriff Jeff Brewer was next to address commissioners with a report of a grant opportunity that had been recently accessed by his department and re-sulted in the county receiving equipment, supplies, and other support material for the jail facility. Brewer told commissioners the grant saved the county over $120,000 in material that would not have to be purchased with county funds. Following these department updates, the minutes of the April 2, 2024, workshop meeting and the March 18, 2024, regular meeting were approved. There was no old business on the meeting agenda, and the next issue for consideration was the upcoming regular two-year replacement cycle of one ambulance for EMS operations. Commissioners heard from County Administrator Singletary about the long lead time required for ordering and receiving these vehicles. Considering the 18-to-24-month delivery time, the commissioners voted to move ahead with authorizing purchase of a new ambulance. The last item on the agenda dealt with the revised policy for operations and bill-ing at the County Transfer and Waste Management Facility. Administrator Singletary in-formed commissioners several changes in policy were needed as far as the amount and the type of material accepted. The county provides a one-ton exclusion policy per household, once a month. The new policy will restrict the type of material accepted under this policy to household waste only. Construction debris, commercial material or other non-household ma-terial will not qualify for the one ton/no charge policy. Additionally, credit card payment is encouraged in paying the $55 per ton charge for amounts over one ton. The revised policy was passed unanimously by commissioners. Administrator Singletary took the opportunity to also address some confusion that exists regarding prices charged by the county for dis-posal of waste material. He clarified the details of that policy in saying that charges for dis-posal of waste brought to the County Transfer Station are determined solely by the amount charged to the county by the designated contractors who remove this material and transport it to regional landfills. There is no markup, administrative fee, or handling fee charged to the citizens of Emanuel County for this service. This concluded the April meeting agen-da. Chairman Foskey called for a motion to adjourn which was offered and passed.