County Board approves committee appointments


Another broad-ranging agenda highlighted this week's regular meeting of the Union County Board of Commissioners.

The meeting was Tuesday afternoon at the Union County Courthouse in Jonesboro. More than 20 people concerned about a variety of matters were on hand.

Topics of discussion and action at Tuesday's meeting included appointments to three advisory committees, a local senior citizens services program and funding for promotion of local wineries.

Advisory Committees

The commissioners approved appointments to three advisory committees.

The committees will be focusing on three key issues of importance: the future of the county courthouse, the Sunshine Inn Community Center in Anna and the county's State Pond property near Jonesboro.

Committee members include people from throughout Union County. Those appointed to the committees follow:

County Courthouse: Judge Mark Boie, Wes Wilkins, Joan Edwards, Duane Hileman, Larry Swope, Judy Travelstead, Vonda Benefield, Dave Shaffer.

Sunshine Inn: Ron Shepard, Lillian Milam, Jerry Hunter, Bill Dillow, Jim Sims, Ron Yarber, Roy Bauer, Mike Yates.

State Pond: Kevin Grammer, Gary Dahmer, Lee Roy Rendleman, Darryl Harvell, Ken Frick, Ron Shepard, Sandra Boaz, Dave Shaffer.

Commissioner Randy Lambdin will be working with the courthouse committee.

Commissioner Don Denny will be working with the State Pond committee.

Commissioners Denny and John Garner will be working with the Sunshine Inn committee.

Initial meeting dates for the committees had not been set.

Senior Citizens Program

Pete Housman shared an update with the county board on progress in development of a local administrator for senior citizen services.

Housman said the local provider tentatively is being called Senior Services for Union County Inc.

A governing board is being established and legal documents are being drafted for the new organization.

Public informational meetings are being planned in conjunction with efforts to secure grant funding for operation of the program, Housman said.

Promoting Wine Trail

The commissioners approved a partial funding request for promotion of the Shawnee Hills Wine Trail wineries in the Union County area.

Allocation of $7,400 from the county's hotel/motel tax tourism fund was approved. More funding had been sought.

Promotion of the wine trail is being planned in the St. Louis metropolitan area starting in February. A long-term promotional effort is being planned by the participating wineries.

Women In Business

The commissioners approved a request for $1,000 in funding from the hotel/motel tax tourism fund to support the upcoming Union County Business Expo.

The expo is scheduled March 28 at Anna-Jonesboro Community High School. The event is sponsored by Union County Women in Business.

The expo has been presented since 1995. Last year, 72 businesses were showcased at the event, which was attended by more than 400 people.

Ambulance Service Building Project

The commissioners approved bids for construction of a new Union County Ambulance Service facility in Jonesboro.

A low base bid of $335,000 from Ron Gobin Enterprises Inc. in Murphysboro was approved for construction of an office and vehicle storage building. Work tentatively is scheduled to begin in early February.

An alternate bid of $9,000 to provide a front canopy also was approved.

Ethics Ordinance

On the recommendation of Union County State's Attorney Tyler Edmonds, the commissioners unanimously approved an ethics ordinance. 

The ordinance covers such issues as politicking on county time and accepting gifts.

E-911 Board

The commissioners approved the appointments of John Garner, Mike Hunter and Bob McCann to the Union County E-911 system board.

Funding For Projects

Southern Five Regional Planning District representative Lisa Thurston attended Tuesday's meeting and reported that several projects being considered by the county could be eligible for grant funding from government sources.

Tax Abatements

The commissioners discussed two requests for tax abatements. No formal action was taken on the proposals. County officials plan to review the issue and look into establishing a policy covering such requests.

Meeting Continued

The commissioners continued Tuesday's meeting until 4 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 21, to conduct further business.

<p>A new transition board and members of the Cross of Peace's former governing body met last Friday afternoon.</p>

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