Improvements discussed for Izard County Senior Center
Izard County Quorum Court was held on Tuesday, Feb. 4, at 6 p.m., with all justices present with the exception of Justin Sanders. The minutes were read by Izard County Clerk Shelly Downing, and approved with one minor correction through a motion by John David Miller and Willie Moser. Izard County Judge Eric Smith introduced Izard County Senior Center Director Susan Williams, and noted she was going to inform the court of some important updates that were necessary to the sustainability of the center.
Williams told members of the court there were renovations and improvements needed that were crucial to the senior center, and they were hopeful a grant would be approved to provide much needed funding. Some of the updates included in the plan were improving the parking lot, the purchase of a new walk-in freezer and new food carrier bags, and other major improvements that were imminent to the center. Currently, Williams noted there is a refrigerated van kept around-the-clock in the parking lot as the walk-in freezer is no longer in working order.
Resolution 2020-2 was entitled, “authorizing the county judge of Izard County to submit an application to the Arkansas Economic Development Commission (AEDC) for a community development project.” This would allow Smith to move forward with the grant application to assist the senior center in improvements deemed necessary to the sustainability to the senior citizen center that provides both meals and activities to the elderly in Izard County. Currently, the senior center has also been providing all of the meals for the Sharp County senior centers. Through a motion by Miller, and seconded by Seth Engelhardt, Resolution 2020-2 passed unanimously.
The next resolution was Resolution 2020-3, authorizing Smith to enter into an administrative agreement with the White River Planning and Development District, Inc. (WRPDD). Williams noted they had been working with Mitzi Hargan with the WRPDD, and their office would oversee the grant application process. Miller noted the WRPDD has helped the county with several grants, and they “do all the labor and legwork for the grant proposal.” Resolution 2020-3 was approved through a motion by Miller, seconded by Wayne Boren, and was approved unanimously.
Resolution 2020-4 was entitled as, “prescribing certain matters with respect to the Izard County Senior Center.” Upon approval, the quorum court would authorize the county to proceed forward with the plans discussed during the meeting to improve the senior center to benefit senior citizens with the various programs and services provided. Through a motion by Miller, seconded by Randy Sherrell, the court approved the resolution unanimously.
The final resolution, Resolution 2020-5 was in regard to county employees who have reached Medicare eligibility status. The county employs three individuals who are eligible to apply for Medicare. The employees can continue to use their current county insurance, or if they wish to switch to Medicare, the county will continue to pay out-of-pocket premiums and would not exceed what is currently being paid. Miller asked if this would make county premiums go lower if there were fewer employees on the county insurance. Smith said it would save the county money, however; the employees could choose to remain on the county insurance. With a motion by Richard Emmens, seconded by Englehardt, the resolution passed unanimously.
Under the county road department update, Smith noted the county road department completed the Boswell bridge project in January. He added there were several loads of crushed rock, and 65 miles of county right-of-way were maintained with the side-arm brush cutter. Crews from the Arkansas Department of Correction North Central Unit (ADC NCU) have been working along Boswell Road and Newburg Road. Smith noted that in the month of January, there was a lot of rain the road department had to work around.
Smith had a few comments that were not included on the agenda. First, he noted the Izard County Health Unit would be open until 6 p.m. on the second, third and fourth Thursdays.
Also, with the primary election being held on Tuesday, March 3, Smith requested the meeting be moved to 5:30 p.m rather than the regular meeting time of 6 p.m. None of the members of the quorum court had any concerns with meeting early. With nothing further, the meeting adjourned at 6:26 p.m.
Izard County Quorum Court meets the first Tuesday of each month at 6 p.m. (unless otherwise noted) at the Izard County Courthouse in Melbourne.