Full agenda for Union County Commissioners

<p style="text-align: justify;">The Union County Board of Commissioners covered a wide range of territory during its first regular meeting of 2009. The meeting was Monday, Jan. 5, at the Union County Courthouse in Jonesboro.

Monday's agenda covered such issues as allocation of hotel/ motel tax funds, enforcement of the county's building permit system, the possible purchase of bulk fuel tanks, improvements at the county's State Pond site west of Jonesboro and the sale of surplus property which was seized as part of a drug investigation.

<strong>Hotel/Motel Tax Fund Allocation:</strong> The commissioners approved a request for support from representatives of the PAST organization of Union County. PAST is working to raise funds which will allow it to purchase a house in Anna where Abraham Lincoln stayed during a visit to Union County in 1858. The house is located along South Main Street. "We need to raise $200,000 for the purchase of the house," PAST president Linda Hileman said. Hileman noted that $100,000 in state matching funds may be available for the project. PAST plans to develop the house into a site which wouldbring tourists to Union Countyto see a part of Lincoln's heritage in Southern Illinois.

The commissioners agreed to pledge $10,000 in hotel/motel tourism tax funds for 2009, and a similar amount in 2010. Final allocation depends on whether or not the purchase is finalized. The commissioners said they thought the project was a good one for Union County.

"I think it's a good project. I think it would be an asset for the county,” commissioner Don Denny said. Commissioner Randy Lambdin agreed. Lambdin also said he would like to see criteria established regarding future utilization of the hotel/motel tax money.

<strong>Building Permit System:</strong>

The commissioners and other county officials discussed the need for a unified approach regarding the county's building permit system. Further discussion and action is planned. "We've all got to be united" on the matter, county commissioner Randy Lambdin said.

In a related matter, county officials discussed the possibility of, at some point, employing a county ordinance enforcement officer. No formal action was taken on the matter.

<strong>Bulk Fuel Tanks:</strong>

County engineer Kevin Grammer shared an update on plans to purchase new bulk fuel storage tanks. The proposal is designed to save the county money on fuel costs. The county is looking at the possibility of purchasing tanks for storage of gasoline and diesel fuel. Several existing tanks would be removed. Grammer will be drafting bid specifications for the purchase of the new tanks.

<strong>State Pond Site:</strong>

The county engineer also reported on plans for improvement work at the county's State Pond site near Jonesboro.

Plans call for installation of culverts at the site as a way to lower the pond's water level. That would take pressure off a dam at the site. The dam is in need of repair.

<strong>General Assistance Supervisor:</strong>

The commissioners agreed to advertise to fill the position of county general assistance supervisor. The full-time salaried position pays a minimum salary of $28,782 a year, including fringe benefits. The deadline to submit an application for the job to the county clerk's office in Jonesboro is Tuesday, Jan. 20.


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