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Supervisors institute hauling permit with fee for trucks

Loggers, pipeliners and other workers bringing in heavy equipment and 18-wheeler trucks will now be required to pay $50 for a permit to travel county roadways.

With trucks utilizing and often damaging roads and bringing on large amounts of mud from the woods, action is being taken by the Board to help maintain the roads. A permit will need to be obtained from the county for each job beginning March 1.

Monies collected will be placed in the county’s oil and gas severance account.

In other Board proceedings:

•   The Jeff Davis County Election Commission submitted the mandatory report required by the lawsuit from the American Civil Rights Union (ACRU) detailing the clean-up of duplicate voters and deceased voters registered in the county. Attorney Wes Daughdrill reported election commissioners are currently processing a multitude of voter information update cards that were returned. Cards were mailed per a consent decree from the lawsuit. Registered voters who did not receive a card are requested to contact the Circuit Clerk’s office at 601-792-4231.

• James Williams of Williams Good Ole Days Buffet won the bid to provide food service to to county jail inmates. The bid application process for 2014 involved a newly-restructured bid form based on USDA dietary guidelines of three meals of 2,200 calories a day with grains, protein and fruits and vegetables.

• County attorney, Wes Daughdrill commented that the process for redistricting of the county has officially been finalized.

•   The Board signed off on a resolution joining other Mississippi counties in pressing the Legislature to stop giving ad valorem tax breaks to valuable federally subsidized Section 42 housing, such as rental properties in Jeff Davis County owned by Sunbelt Rentals in Alabama. The resolution calls for a repeal of 2005 legislation that, according to Daughdrill, outlines that all counties must tax Section 42 housing by the “income” approach, which brings in fewer dollars, versus the cost approach. Jeff Davis County has always taxed via the income approach, but if the legislative push is successful, more tax dollars would come to the county.

District Four Supervisor Michael Evans emphasized that the proposed repeal the Board is supporting is not supporting an increase in taxes on local residents. “This is in the best interest of our county,” said Evans. “These tax breaks are going to people like Sunbelt in Alabama that are not even in our county.”

Daughdrill pointed out that the monetary difference could be over $10,000 annually and that this is a loss of revenue the county could be getting but is not at this time. All interested citizens and officials are encouraged to come to the steps of the State Capitol on February 11 at 10:30 a.m. to support Section 42 Property Day.