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Board mulls allotment of road and bridge tax

WESSON – The board of aldermen debated Tuesday how much of thetown’s road and bridge tax levy it should designate to CopiahCounty for the upcoming year.

During the board’s monthly meeting, Alderman Robert Derrickquestioned whether the town should give all of the approximately$22,000 levy or just give a portion for work done in Wesson bycounty employees.

“I think we need to give them half and keep half,” he said.

Alderwoman Lura Greer disagreed, saying she believed the countyearned all the money.

“They do a lot for this town,” she said. “Anything you ask(Supervisor) Terry Channell to do, he will do it.”

Derrick said that before the amount allotted to the county wasdecided upon the board should look at cost estimates for plannedprojects.

Mayor Alton Shaw said he plans to compile a list for thealdermen to review at the December meeting. The tax levy decisionwas tabled until then.

In other matters, the board filled the municipal judge positionleft vacant with the recent death of Judge Cliff Thomas. Aldermenselected board attorney Chris Arledge as the new municipaljudge.

“I think he’s earned it,” said Alderman Hollis Cowen Jr. with asmile and a nod to Arledge.

Arledge will no longer serve as board attorney but said he looksforward to his new position.

“I appreciate the opportunity. It’s something I’ve alwaysthought about doing and wanted to do,” he said.

Arledge will fill the position Dec. 1. Aldermen voted to hireDudley Lampton, who has worked with the Osyka town board for anumber of years, to fill Arledge’s position.

In financial matters, town officials are looking to save moneyand have more accurate reporting of fuel use in town vehicles byswitching to Fuelman services.

Shaw announced that Fuelman cards had been ordered, posingquestions from Derrick about the town using Fuelman services.

“I do not agree with that if it’s taking money from our town,”said Derrick.

Shaw explained that it would actually bring money into the townby having town employees buy fuel from Wesson gas stationsparticipating in the Fuelman program.

The Fuelman program will save the town money by not having topay taxes on the fuel purchased for government vehicles, saidShaw.

In the past, fuel has been brought to Wesson from a LincolnCounty business because no gas stations in the area participated inthe Fuelman program, according to town officials.

Shaw pointed out that the Fuelman system will allow the town tokeep track of how much gas is used and by whom through weeklyactivity reports and employee pin numbers.

Derrick requested information showing how much money the townwould save by using Fuelman. Shaw said he would look into gettingthat information and, if available, present it at the next meeting.No other discussion followed.