County commissioners approve contract for March primaries
by Rita Arnst
Jan 20, 2010 | 1632 views | 0 0 comments | 10 10 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Last Friday (Jan. 11) Live Oak County commissioners approved a contract between the county clerk and political parties for the March primaries.  Pictured from left, Pct. 4 Commissioner Emilio Garza, Pct. 1 Commissioner Richard Lee, Live Oak County Judge Jim Huff, Live Oak County Clerk Karen Irving, Pct. 2 Commissioner Donna Mills, and Pct. 3 Commissioner Jim Bassett.
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Live Oak County commissioners met on Friday (Jan. 11) for a regular meeting and approved a contract between the county clerk and political parties for the March primaries.

Live Oak County Clerk Karen Irving said the Democrat and Republican parties want to contract with the county for the primary election. “We get an administrative fee which is 10 percent. I recommend we contract with them because the money we make can be used for election supplies.”

In other county news, county officials approved a salary schedule for the Central South Texas Criminal Investigations Unit employees.

Live Oak County Sheriff Larry Busby explained through some federal grants received by Duval County, for a drug task force, Live Oak County has been assigned two officers. Another officer was assigned to McMullen and the fourth officer was assigned to Duval County.

“The officers’ salaries come from grant money and forfeitures. No county money is put into this. We pay the officers and Duval County reimburses us. But the two officers we pay are entitled to our insurance benefits.”

Pct. 4 Live Oak County Commissioner Emilio Garza asked, “If one of these officers is injured, does that impact us?”

“Yes, it shows up on our workers comp,” said Live Oak County Treasurer Peggy Benham.

Live Oak County Auditor Tragina Smith wanted clarification that the letter the county received from Duval referred to only the two officers assigned to Live Oak County and did not include providing insurance benefits, workman’s compensation, etc., to all four officers in the task force. “Looking at the letter it is hard to tell what they are saying. We don’t have proof it is just for two officers,” said Smith.

After more discussion, Busby explained, “Yes, they fall under our ‘umbrella.’ Nothing has changed. It is like last year and the year before.”

The agenda item to consider and take action on the transfer of funds into airport funds was approved. County Auditor Smith said additional funds needed to be transferred to pay bills. Pct. 3 Live Oak County Commissioner Jim Bassett asked what the transfer of funds covers. Smith answered, “$1,800 is needed for fuel and other things.”

Garza asked, “We are transferring funds just to cover a bill?”

“We have budgeted a total of $10,000 for the airport,” Smith replied.

Commissioners approved convention travel for Pct. 2 Justice of the Peace Virginia Tanguma and Court Clerk Geneva Garcia. Travel expenses for a deputy to attend a mandatory conference in Raymondville was approved. Travel expenses for Dale Rankin, LOC Extension agent, to attend a stock show in Kerrville was approved. Additionally, County Clerk Irving’s continuing education expenses were approved.

County officials approved change of employment status in county offices for David Hernandez, Sharon Guerrero, Joe Michael Benavides and Tamara Gallagher.

Prior to adjournment, Live Oak County Judge Jim Huff asked if anyone else had any comments. Smith reminded those present to submit their final bills and paperwork because she is preparing to close the pecuniary books.
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