HOUSTON – The Chickasaw County Board of Supervisors is looking at different methods of adding security and safety to both Courthouses in the county.
EMA Director Linda Griffin brought quotes to the May 6 meeting for fire alarm systems for the courthouses and panic buttons to be installed in the offices of the Circuit and Chancery clerks and Tax Assessor.
Currently, the Okolona Courthouse has a sprinkler system in case of fire, but the Houston Courthouse does not. None of the clerk’s offices have any type of protection installed at this time.
Griffin explained to supervisors the panic buttons would be similar to those in banking establishments that ring 911 automatically when pushed.
Griffin also requested copies of keys to each courthouse be housed in the city fire stations.
“So they can enter any time an alarm goes off without causing damage,” Griffin said.
The board is looking at options as each courthouse has slightly different needs, but does want to make the improvements to security before they are needed in the event of emergency.
“The reason we’re doing this is because of what happened in Webster County,” said Jerry Hall of the fire that destroyed the Courthouse in Walthall.
Sharing a ride
Supervisors heard from Sheriff Jimmy Simmons and Regional Jail Warden Brand Huffman about vehicle shortages.
Currently the CCRCF has a van to transport inmates but it is not economical to use when moving only one inmate. Huffman has been borrowing an extra car from the county jail, but the county facility uses it as well and scheduling is an issue.
Chief Deputy James Meyers suggested purchasing a new patrol car and moving a patrol car off the road to use at the county facility as a part-time, or back-up car. The current part-time car can then be used by the CCRCF.
Motion was made by Supervisor Russell Brooks to use funds from the Sheriff’s special fund for the purchase and seconded by Hall.
Board President Anderson McFarland requested Huffman, Simmons and Meyers get prices for a new car for the project.
In other matters, the board:
* Heard from Sheriff Simmons that water pressure at the CCRCF is not up to standard and that engineer Ed Springer recommends a new pump at the facility. Brooks recommended forming a plan of action and approaching the Houston city board for assistance.
* Accepted surrendered tags from Tax Assessor Sue Ard.
* Agreed to hire Jonathan Salmon as a certified fire instructor on a contract basis to facilitaty classes intermittently as needed.