° empty

Supervisors seek further guidance on dead horses

NATCHEZ — It’s a question as old as time — what do you do with a dead horse on a Saturday?

It’s also the question Adams County Road Manager Robbie Dollar posed to the board of supervisors at their meeting Monday morning.

Dollar said he got a call over the weekend from the Adams County Sheriff’s Department asking for the price for the road department to bury a large animal that the Natchez-Adams County Humane Society had to put down.

The county currently provides those services Monday through Thursday, Dollar said, but he was hesitant to commit to do so on the weekends in the future because of how much overtime pay would be involved.

The county could possibly provide large livestock burial services for a fee, Supervisor Mike Lazarus said.

Dollar said such a fee currently exists.

“We want to keep the price affordable because the alternative is grim,” Lazarus said. “We don’t want to find these animals on the side of the road.”

Board attorney Scott Slover said the supervisors need to speak to their legislative delegation to get clarification in the law about what counties can do in situations wherein the body of a large animal needs disposal.

“It creates a serious public safety hazard,” Slover said.

In other news:

• County resident Francis Ransom appeared before the board to express a concern about the theft of street signs in the Kingston area. The signs for Ransom, St. Mark Church and Shelby roads have all been stolen, he said.

“I had an incident at my church — Christian Hope (Baptist Church) — on Gayosa Avenue where an emergency occurred, 911 was called and the ambulance couldn’t find the church, the only church on Gayosa, which has street lights and signs,” Ransom said. “What are you going to do if an ambulance is dispatched to Kingston with no street lights and no signs?”

Ransom asked if the county could consider buying a sign-making machine and post game cameras to catch the thieves.

“This has been an ongoing problem for 10 years,” he said.

Dollar said whenever the road department orders a replacement sign, two signs are ordered.

• Adams County Juvenile Justice Center Administrator Kevin Nations told the supervisors that a billing oversight at the juvenile facility had been corrected and the county had received $13,000.

During a discussion later in the meeting, the board voted not to increase the pay of juvenile detention workers to $11 an hour, a request that was made in the juvenile justice center’s proposed budget for next year.

Supervisors’ President Darryl Grennell said he supported the idea because the shifts the juvenile justice jailers work make it difficult for them to work a second job, but all of the other supervisors voted against the proposal.

• The board heard from Circuit Clerk Eddie Walker, who asked for an $8,000 increase in his budget for next year so he can hire part-time help to work during the 2014 congressional and local elections.

County Administrator Joe Murray said the county could possibly make the increase this year but also implement new filing and maintenance fees in the circuit court to help offset future costs.