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Quorum Court

By Liz Woll , 04/26/19 3:36 PM

The Quorum Court met at 5:30pm last Thursday afternoon at the Hempstead County Courthouse.
The meeting began with a prayer, immediately followed by the pledge.

The first order of business was the cleanup ordinance for 2018; a listing of times when money budgeted to one department of the county’s infrastructure ended up unused. Reading this list was a feat unto itself, and took up more than half of the entire meeting’s length. Fortunately, it seems this procedure only occurs annually. Once the reading was finished, a few clarifications were made for court members with questions, and then the ordinance – transferring funds to where they were needed – was unanimously approved.

The next order of business had to do with amending an appropriation of funds. Funds had been allocated to the highway department for the purchase of two graders. These graders ended up not being purchased. The court unanimously voted on returning the funds to their original use.

The last order of business was perhaps the most interesting. At the very least, it was the most relatable; discussion of the phone bill. Though it was not on the agenda, David Clayton took a moment to voice his concerns on how much the county was paying for the local government’s phone service.

Clayton presented the quorum court with a photocopy of the their service-provider’s charges over a 6-month period. He then documented what the amount would add up to over a 4-year period – over $200,000. An alternative service provider was presented, though only briefly discussed.

However, it seemed that the amount they were paying and the amount the charges were represented as were very different. County Judge Jerry Crain proposed bringing in a qualified neutral party to assess their coverage and how best to proceed. The general consensus was that there was a need to look into the issue further.

After that, Clayton moved to adjourn and was seconded by four people at once, ending the evening with a bit of laughter.