There was no old business. Under new business, JP David Clayton volunteered to serve on a committee to revise the employee handbook. Keith Steed and Ed Darling will also serve. The JP's voted to approve the committee and its efforts.
Judge Haskell Morse noted five architects have sent in material on work on the new courthouse. Ed Darling, Jessie Henry, and Cherry Stewart will review the material submitted. Darling noted Farmers Bank has chosen H.L. James as general contractor and the bank hopes to use as many local contractors as possible. He said a ground-breaking is set for June 12th.
Darling noted when the county officially takes possession of the old migrant center which will house a new Juvenile Behavioral Center it will be the county's responsibility to fence it within 90 days. Sheriff James Singleton said the cost for materials to fence the nearly 9 acre plot would be $20,000 and that's with jail inmates doing the labor. The JP's voted to establish a new account for the Behavioral Center and voted to fund the account with $20,000 from Quorum Court Miscellaneous. Darling noted this is a good time to establish such a juvenile facility as the state of Arkansas has the highest rate of juvenile incarceration in the country. Sheriff James Singleton noted an architect has looked at the facility and said it is very good shape. He noted plans for the pavilion at the center are to enclose it and use it to house administrative offices, additional rooms, and a cafeteria. The Sheriff noted the county is now mowing the yard.
JP Ed Darling told the JP's that the ten year operational agreement for the college to operate Hempstead Hall ends on July 22nd. JP Lynn Montgomery moved the county give Hempstead Hall to the college. The JP's voted to begin that process. Spectator John Akin asked why if the college gets Hempstead Hall would the county still collect the maintenance and operation tax for the facility. It was answered that the tax will be collected until it is repealed by a vote of the people. Akin says he thinks the public would like to know that.
Terrie James of the Cooperative Extension Service introduced new Ag agent Stacy Stone. Stone made several brief remarks.
Assessor Kim Smith reminded the public that the deadline to assess your property is May 31st.
John Akin asked if elected officials are considered county employees. It was noted county officials are not governed by the same rules as county employees. The meeting then adjourned.