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Posted: Tuesday, October 9, 2007 12:00 am

Discussion of a road to be dedicated in Saddleback Ridge subdivision sparked a proposal by Ector County Judge Susan Redford to form a committee to evaluate current codes on construction in the county.

Commissioners approved acceptance of the road in the subdivision after Precinct 3 Commissioner Barbara Graff questioned several points about it.

At one point, Projects Director Fred Crawford noted developments in the county aren’t required at this time to have curb and guttering.

Graff replied, “Maybe we need to make curb and gutter a policy in Ector County.”

The discussion led Redford to suggest formation of a committee to evaluate all current codes on home construction in the county.

Redford said, “Since we passed the 125,000 population mark, the rules have changed. I just want to be sure we’re complying with all of them.”

She said she hopes to have the committee named by the next commissioners’ meeting.

Also Tuesday, commissioners voted to ratify the decision of the Ector County Elections Commission in hiring Mitzi Scheible as the new elections administrator.

Scheible, an employee of the elections office for 18 years, was named to the position formerly held by Robert Mendoza.

Mendoza was fired by the elections commission on June 11.

After the vote, Scheible said, “I feel good. It’s a good position.”

She also noted the commissioners’ decision to approve a $43,666 expenditure to purchase 20 new electronic voting machines will help give the county enough machines for upcoming elections.

The machines were purchased from Hart Intercivic.

Addressing the upcoming Nov. 6 Constitutional Amendment election, Scheible said, “I just hope people get out and vote. Every vote counts.”

In other action, commissioners:

>> Extended the payment of overtime to personnel in the detention center through the end of this year. Sheriff Mark Donaldson said the detention center is 16 employees short, and it’s been difficult to keep new employees.

Donaldson said a non-certified employee in the detention center earns $13.66 an hour while one who’s certified earns $14.86 an hour. He said some employees have left to work in the oilfields.

>> Approved a request for Criminal Justice Division grant money.

>> Approved a request for JAG grant money of $29,193.

>> Approved a letter of intent for submitting a Department of State Health Services Tobacco Prevention and Control Coalition Program request. Mitchell Moore, executive director of Palmer Drug Abuse Program in Midland, told commissioners that under the Tobacco Prevention and Control Coalition Program he believes he can bring $3 million to Ector County in three years to help prevent youths from smoking.

Moore said he came to Ector County because “we need an entity to act as the physical agent.” He said there’ll be no cost to the county, only the benefit derived from the program.

>> Approved appointment of Carol Maddox as lay representative and Margaret Green as alternate to the Texas State Library.

>> Approved continuation of juvenile detention service contracts with Andrews, Brewster, Crane, Dawson, Gaines, Jeff Davis, Pecos, Presidio, Reagan, Reeves, Ward, Winkler and Upton counties and the 118th Judicial District.

>> Approved an insurance contract with St. Paul Traveler’s with Wachovia as broker.

>> Approved specifications for elevator services.

>> Approved line-item transfers for contract services and the accounts payable report.

>> Heard a report from Dale Childers on a Regional Interoperability Radio Plan.

>> Held an executive session to consider legal matters involving several potential cases and personnel matters.

After the session, commissioners rejected a counterproposal in a land purchase case. Redford said that matter remains in negotiation.

They referred the Lorenzo Macias case to outside counsel. Macias is a former county employee who feels he was treated unfairly by Ector County.

>> No one appeared at a 9:45 a.m. public hearing on the county exercising a local option to exempt goods in transit from taxes. The commissioners voted to continue to tax goods in transit.

Odessa, TX

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