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County to address Census issues

By Fred Guarino
The Lowndes Signal

The Lowndes County Commission does not believe that the county lost 2,000 people since the last census and will work to see that the count is corrected, according to County Commission Chairman Charlie King Jr.

King said following Monday night’s commission meeting there are census blocks that say “zero” in each commissioner district, but said four or five people still live in them.

“What we plan on doing is picking up those folks and sending it to the census department and the justice department so that they will know that they are there,” said King.

King said of the 2,000 missing people, “We know roughly half of them are still here.”

The numbers could be important as the commission set Monday, Aug. 8 at the date for a public hearing on a redistricting the county.

The meeting will be held as a part of the regular County Commission meeting that day at 10 a.m.

Commission Attorney Henry “Hank” Sanders said redistricting must be done six months before the election. He said there is not an option to not do the redistricting in the allotted time.

Sanders said, “They have census resolution approach if you know some people have been left out in a particular area. But if you are trying to challenge all over the county, then you are going to have to do a count, get some concrete information.”

Sanders also said that there was no provision for a reimbursement for a recount that he knew.
The commission took no action regarding the census.

Commissioners voted submit three roads 2 into Mosses, 13 out of Mosses and 23 in White Hall for resurfacing with federal aid funds on a four-zero-one vote with Commissioner Joseph Barganier abstained.

Commissioner Robert Harris asked County Engineer David Butts to provide a list of all grades on county roads.

The commission approved a resolution for a possible ADECA grant funded project to pave Lake Berry Road on a five-zero vote.

Commissioners also voted five-zero to approve the vacation of Gardiner Road.

Included in the consent agenda unanimous approved, were a payment of $14,200 for a federal audit, a $400 appropriation to Calhoun High School Athletic Department, a $2,300 appropriation to the Edgewood Tutorial Program, a $400 appropriation to Life Changing Outreach and contract with the Alabama Department of Transportation for use of county equipment in the appraisal office for thor which the county will be paid $19,200 in the form of a grant.

Commissioners approved the minutes of the June 27 meeting on a four-zero-one vote with King abstained.

And the commission approved payment to Standard & Poor’s for $8,200 on a three-zero-two vote with Commissioners Dickson Farrior and Bargainer abstained.

Harris asked commissioners to attend an Alabama Apple Seed meeting in Hayneville on Thursday July 28 at 8 a.m. concerning a constitution reform for home rule in Lowndes County to get bills passed.

Harris said, “The county government is losing out because we can’t get any bills passed.” He said, “Having home rule will, I think will be an advantage to us because we will be able to do some to the things we should be able to do such as planning and zoning number one. We can control what comes in and where it goes and stuff of that nature.”

He said of six bills from Lowndes County none have passed.

The commission unanimously voted to go into executive session, but took no actions and unanimously adjourned.

All commissioners were present.