The Airport Authority got inserted among the judges and lawyers, and the Coroner’s Office failed to turn in a budget. The day was mostly sitting around waiting, because most of the actual presentations were only a few minutes each, yet were scheduled hours apart, in the last day of the three days of “Budget Hearings” which aren’t really hearings because nobody from the public can speak and they don’t have a budget to hear yet. See the first day for the agenda.
Here are links to videos of each item with some notes by Gretchen, followed by a video playlist. No video for the first item, EMS, due to camera failure; sorry. For the rest, as the Chairman said, referring to Gretchen and the LAKE camera:
We have our videographer back there, so we’re ready.
Hm, maybe LAKE should submit a budget request to the county….
Clerk of Court – Beth Greene
Video. Computer coordination among the courts is still being developed. Processing of tickets (transferred from Sheriff’s office last year) has increased load but is being handled. Most items have stayed the same. More filing space is needed. Since the addition of a second state court judge, the load has increased. Three new employees could be kept busy but only one is being requested.
Probate Court – Judge Terri Adams
Video. No substantial change in budget — shortest presentation of the week: little more than one minute.
Video. State funds some personnel and some travel expenses. 33 employees, 12 are funded by the state the 5 counties in the circuit fund the other 19. Assistant DA’s have not had a substantial increase since 2008. Legislature had “promised” an increase this year but that is actually not in the budget.
Airport Authority – Jim Galloway
Video. Many airport items, like the primary runway are funded by the FAA but secondary runways and upgrades to the gate areas are not. Additionally TSA has reduced funding for security yet requires that an officer with arresting authority be present.
Solicitor General – Justin Cabral
Video. With the addition of a second state court judge, staff is spread thinly.
State Court – Judge John Edwards
Video. Why is state court so busy? Things that were felonies are now misdemeanors, no control over how many tickets get written, Interstate accidents, visitors, issues and more. Job opportunities in court reporting as it it hard to hire court reporters and they are needed, especially since there are now two state court judges.
- Meeting conclusion – no report from Coroner’s Office
Here’s a video playlist:
Budget Hearing, Lowndes County Commission (LCC Budget),
Video by Gretchen Quarterman for Lowndes Area Knowledge Exchange (LAKE),
327 N. Ashley St., Valdosta, GA 31601, 5 March 2015.