Commissioners OK Money For Jail Repairs

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The Cannon County Commission approved all items on the agenda when it met in special session Monday night at the courthouse.

The primary reason for the meeting was to approve a continuing budget resolution to allow the county to operate past the end of the 2010-2011 fiscal year, which ends Thursday night.

The commission has not yet been presented a budget for the 2011-2012 fiscal year, which starts July 1. The commission's Budget Committee is still working on the proposed budget.

It is anticipated the commission will have a budget for approval at its next quarterly meeting, which is set for July 16. If not, another special session will have to be called to do so, likely in August.

The major item the commissioners approved Monday was a resolution for a 12-Year Capital Outlay Note for repairs at the Cannon County Jail. Needed work includes repair of the roof, new heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) units, and a new video monitoring system.

The commission approved the resolution, which allows the county to borrow up to $225,000 for the project. The money will be repaid with funds from the county's litigation tax, which was approved last year. It is estimated revenue from the  tax will average $25,000 yearly.

The commissioners also approved a resolution requested by the sheriff to allow him to contract with an outside agency for jail medical services. Southern Heath Partners of Chattanooga is the company the sheriff's department will be entering into an agreement with, for a base fee per year of $66,900.

Southern Health Partners will provide one nurse (LPN) for 20 hours per week and on-call nursing 24 hours per day. A physician, nurse practitioner or physician assistant  will visit the jail at least two times each month, or as needed, to see any inmate as referred by the nurse.

The county will continue to bear the cost of any offsite medical and dental care, x-rays and excluded medications needed by inmates.

Other items approved by commissioners Monday included the Three-Star strategic plan for yearly certification and a variety of departmental budget amendments to close out the 2010-2012 fiscal year.
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