Han­cock takes gavel at 1st meet­ing of the year

County com­mis­sion­ers ap­prove con­tracts for a train­ing cen­ter and two wa­ter projects

Rome News-Tribune - - FRONT PAGE - By Diane Wag­ner DWag­[email protected]

Floyd County Com­mis­sion Chair Scotty Han­cock took up the gavel at the first meet­ing of the year Tues­day, fol­low­ing his se­lec­tion last month as the panel’s leader for 2019.

He and Com­mis­sion­ers Rhonda Wal­lace and Larry Maxey — who were re-elected to new terms in Novem­ber — had been sworn into of­fice a few hours ear­lier by Pro­bate Court Judge Steve Burkhal­ter.

Han­cock, who’s now an ad­min­is­tra­tor at Red­mond Re­gional Med­i­cal cen­ter, spent 18 years as an em­ployee of Floyd County. He started as a cor­rec­tions of­fi­cer at the prison, moved to the sher­iff’s of­fice, then headed the an­i­mal con­trol de­part­ment be­fore be­ing pro­moted to di­rec­tor of the county’s emer­gency man­age­ment agency.

“I’d like to say thank-you to the board for en­trust­ing me with the chair ... and thankyou to Chair Wal­lace for her ser­vice the past two years. We’ve had some tough is­sues come be­fore us and she’s shown great lead­er­ship,” Han­cock said.

Com­mis­sion­ers took care of a num­ber of ad­min­is­tra­tive is­sues, in­clud­ing ap­proval by con­sent of an­nual beer and self-ser­vice fuel per­mit re­newals for 20 con­ve­nience stores in the un­in­cor­po­rated area. County Clerk Erin El­rod said the last batch would be pre­sented at the Jan. 22 meet­ing.

The board also re­newed the con­tracts for County Man­ager Jamie McCord, County At­tor­ney Wade Hoyt III and, as out­side au­di­tors, the firm of Mauldin & Jenk­ins.

Han­cock also ac­cepted Com­mis­sioner Wright Bagby’s rec­om­men­da­tion to ap­point Thad Wat­ters to fill a va­cancy on the Rome Floyd Parks & Recre­ation Board. Wat­ters will serve out the re­main­der of an un­ex­pired term, through June 30, 2020.

Two groups of res­i­dents spoke dur­ing the pub­lic com­ment pe­riod about road is­sues: train block­ages on Hall Road and washouts on Moun­tain Lane.

McCord said the U.S. Army Corps of En­gi­neers re­cently ap­proved a lim­ited in­cur­sion in the wet­lands near Hall Road and there’s now a path to­ward emer­gency ac­cess. The Moun­tain Lane is­sue will need to be re­searched, how­ever, be­cause it’s un­clear if the off­shoot of

Ward Moun­tain Road is pub­lic or pri­vate prop­erty.

Also on Tues­day, the board ap­proved a re­vised con­tract of up to $550,000 for con­struc­tion of a new train­ing cen­ter build­ing at the Floyd County Jail. It’s the first phase of a larger project ex­pand­ing the fa­cil­ity’s med­i­cal wing.

Com­mis­sion­ers also awarded two wa­ter con­tracts to UWS Util­ity and Wa­ter Ser­vices of Trion.

The com­pany will in­stall 1,400 feet of wa­ter lines along U.S. 27 North near Richard B. Rus­sell Re­gional Air­port at a cost of $62,70. McCord said it’s the fi­nal sec­tion to be re­lo­cated from un­der the high­way. The sec­ond project, at $27,500, will tie in the county’s wa­ter main at the High­way 156 pump sta­tion to pro­vide a back-up source in the area.

/ Diane Wag­ner

Pro­bate Court Judge Steve Burkhal­ter (from left) ad­min­is­ters the oath of of­fice Tues­day to newly re-elected Floyd County Com­mis­sion­ers Rhonda Wal­lace, Larry Maxey and Chair Scotty Han­cock.

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