Bond sale finances library improvements

Published 5:00 am Tuesday, October 17, 2000

Lincoln County supervisors Monday approved the sale of $715,000in general obligation bonds to help finance library improvementsand cover cost overruns in construction of the county’s new jailfacility.

Lincoln County supervisors Monday approved the sale of $715,000in general obligation bonds to help finance library improvementsand cover cost overruns in construction of the county’s new jailfacility.

Randy Wall, bond attorney, said the 4.9 percent interest ratereceived from Trustmark National Bank was lower than theapproximately 5.25 percent rate that officials had projected, andhe credited supervisors with good timing on the bond sale. With therate, the county’s debt service payments on the bonds will bearound $94,000 a year for 10 years.

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“We should be able to get the money in 30-40 days,” Wall said,mentioning final bond issue paperwork that must be completed.

Henry Ledet, director, said library officials are makingprogress on plans that will see approximately $1 million inimprovements. The library has received a $500,000 state grant,which had to be matched with county funds, for the project.

“The state money probably will not be available until after thefirst of the year,” Ledet said.

Planned improvements include a new children’s area, installationof an elevator and upgrading of entrances and other areas forhandicap accessibility. Ledet said library officials were lookingforward to the much-needed project.

“It’s absolutely wonderful,” Ledet said about getting projectfunding. “We’re very excited.”

Tom Moak, chairman of the library’s board of directors,expressed appreciation to supervisors for their support of theproject and the way they handled the library’s funding request.

District 4 Supervisor W.D. “Doug” Moak said the project would bebeneficial to many Lincoln Countians.

“I think it’s good we could help the library,” Moak said. “Byhelping the library, it helps people in the city as well as thecounty.”

The rest of the bond issue funds will be used to cover expensesrelated to the county’s new jail.

With an earlier bond issue, the county had about $3.2 million toconstruct the facility. However, design, equipment and othermodifications ate into $200,000 in contingencies for which fundswere not available.

“It was something that had to be done,” Moak said about theadditional jail money.


Also Monday, supervisors elected to have Board Attorney BobAllen contact the Illinois Central Railroad, now Canadian National,about the railroad repairing a bridge in Bogue Chitto.

The bridge over the railroad has been a source of concerns foryears, and County Engineer Carl Ray Furr said it is now an”unbearable situation.” Surface and guard rail work are needed onthe bridge, which has a weight limit of 15,000 pounds, he said.

“That means cars and pickup trucks are OK, but not big trucks,school buses or 18-wheelers,” Furr said.

County officials believe the bridge belongs to the railroad,unless past records shows where it was conveyed to and accepted bythe county. Supervisors plan to give the railroad 60 days toaddress concerns or county work will be done and billed to therailroad.

“It’s their responsibility to keep it and maintain it,” Allensaid.


Supervisors also continued the process of approving school busturnarounds for their districts.

Ten were approved for District 4, one for District 3 and 39 forDistrict 5.

“I’ve read over all of them and they’re right,” said District 5Supervisor Gary Walker, adding that seven were for safety reasonssuch as stops under a hill or in a dangerous curve.

Some turnarounds have been approved at previous meetings.Tillmon Bishop, county administrator, estimated other districtswould have turnaround numbers similar to District 5, but allnecessary paperwork had not be turned in yet.

Under the county’s modified turnaround policy, Allen remindedsupervisors that the turnarounds are not to be worked untilrequested by the school district. The policy also states turnaroundwork is not be done more than 150 feet from the center of a countyroad.

One turnaround on the Franklin County line was rejected becauseit was too far off the road, Moak said. Supervisors also discussedthe need to follow the policy when there is a question about aturnaround.

“It’s going to be up to us to enforce it,” Moak said.


Civil defense property will be holding area for cars andother vehicles impounded because of a new state law involvingsecond offense DUIs, supervisors have decided.

A new state law, effective Sept. 1, requires vehicles tobe impounded or immobilized when a person is convicted of secondoffense DUI. With impoundment totals uncertain, Bishop indicatedthe civil defense area was the best option.

“It is for right now,” Bishop said. “We can hold about25 cars over there.”

In a personnel matter, duties for the county’s 911coordinator have been divided among other county employeesfollowing Evelyn Summers’ resignation last week.

“We’re handling it right now,” Bishop said.

Bishop said Civil Defense Coordinator Clifford Galey ishandling roadway home verification aspects of the 911 job whilecounty administration office employees are taking care of dataentry aspects.

The question Monday was whether supervisors wanted tocontinue with that plan or advertise for a newcoordinator.

District 2 Supervisor Bobby J. Watts said he did notwant the county’s 911 service to be lacking.

“Is our 911 system going to work right?” Wattsasked.

Bishop said there had not been anyproblems.

Supervisors elected to continue with the divided dutiesplan for the next two weeks. At their end-of-the-month meeting,they are expected review operations and make a decision on how toproceed with the 911 coordinator situation.