Greene County Commission holds organizational meeting

Corey Cockrell

Garria Spencer

The newly elected Greene County Commission met on November 16, 2022, at the William M. Branch Courthouse for its organizational meeting.
All commissioners were present, including Garria Spencer-District 1, Tennyson Smith-District 2, Corey Cockrell – District 3, Allen Turner – District 4 and Roshanda Summerville – District 5.

Allen Turner, the current Commission Chair turned over the meeting to the attorney to conduct the election for officers. Spencer nominated Tennyson Smith and Summerville nominated Corey Cockrell for Chairperson of the Commission. Corey Cockrell was selected Chair by three votes (Summerville, Cockrell and Turner) to two votes for Smith.

For Vice Chair, Spencer and Summerville were nominated. Garria Spencer received three votes (Smith, Spencer, and Turner) to two votes for Summerville, and was elected Vice Chair. Committees will remain the same, although Turner and Cockrell will switch out their committee assignments.

The Commission agreed to meet on the second Monday of each month at 5:00PM and to hold a work session to hear reports and develop the Commission meeting agenda on the Wednesday, before the second Monday at 5:00 PM. The group agreed to use Robert’s Rules of Order to conduct business.

The Commission will maintain bank accounts with Citizens Trust Bank and Merchants and Farmers Bank, with the Chair, Vice-Chair, CFO-Mac Underwood and County Administrator, Brenda Burke as signatories.

Mac Underwood gave a financial report for the Commission as of October 31, 2022, the first month of the fiscal year, 2022-23. The report showed $6.9 million in Citizens Trust Bank and $3.9 million in Merchants and Farmers, and $872,063 in Bond Sinking Funds. Commissioner Turner asked the CFO to distinguish between restricted and unrestricted funds so that the Commissioners and the public will know that all these funds are not available for discretionary expenditure and only a small amount of funds are not budgeted or required to be spent for specific purposes.

The report also showed that the County Commission spent $1,241,663 for operations during October including $703,850 for Rebuild Alabama road and bridges expenses paid by the State of Alabama. The expenditure report showed the county general fund and agencies had remaining funds in their budget within the range of 90 to 96%, which means that their spending was in conformity with the budget, that allows for 92% of funds to remain for use later in the fiscal year.

In the Public Comments section of the meeting, Mrs. Marilyn Gibson, the Chief Librarian, requested assistance from the Commission to fix a leaking roof, which was endangering the books in the library. “The Commission covers the expenses of the library, including insurance. We had the insurance adjusters to come and look at the damages, but we have not received the report, and we need to fix the roof,” said Ms. Gibson.

Carrie Logan, representing the Eutaw Chamber of Commerce said that the Chamber had secured the Stillman College Band for the Eutaw Christmas parade, however $1,600 was needed to pay for three buses to transport the band members to march and play in the parade. Logan asked for assistance from the Commission toward this expense.

Joe Powell, Chair of the Greene County EMS Board, thanked the Commission for helping the ambulance service meet its financial obligations, including payroll, for the past three months. Powell asked the Commission to attend a meeting with the municipalities and other agencies seeking the long-term viability of the ambulance service for Greene County.

Greene County Commission holds organizational meeting

Commissioners Allen Turner and Lester Brown
The Greene County Commission held its organizational meeting on Tuesday, November 8, 2021 at 3:30 PM in the William M. Branch County Courthouse.
RaShonda Summerville, current Chairperson called the meeting to order, shortly after the appointed time. With four of the members, a quorum was present to hold an official meeting. Commissioner Corey Cockrell was absent but Summerville, Lester Brown, Tennyson Smith and Allen Turner were present.
Macaroy Underwood, Chief Financial Officer, reviewed the monthly financial report, for the first month of the 2021-22 fiscal year. He reported that all county agencies had spent between 7 and 11% of their annual budget and were on track for the month. He also reported that the Sheriff and the School Board had paid in supplementary funds, as required by agreements to cover the cost of personnel above their budgeted amount.
Underwood indicated that no pay raises would be given until the Sheriff deposited funds in advance to cover increases.
The Commission agreed to pay bills for the month of October 2021, which totaled $597,195 and included the county’s payroll. An additional $86,880 was paid by electronic transfer, primarily for taxes and retirement for employees.
At around 4:00 PM, Chairwoman Summerville, turned the gavel over to County Attorney Mark Parnell to conduct the election of the Commission Chairperson. Allen Turner was nominated by Commissioner Lester Brown.
There were no other nominations. Turner was elected Chair by a vote of 3-1, with Summerville voting no.
Allen Turner took over the Chair and called for nominations for Vice-Chair. Commissioner Smith nominated Lester Brown for Vice Chair, there were no other nominations. Lester Brown was elected Vice-Chair by a vote of 3-1.
 The Commissioners tabled the appointment of commissioners to various working committees. The commissioners agreed to meet on the second Monday of each month, at 3:30 PM for their regular meeting. At this point in the meeting, Commissioner Cockrell arrived late for the meeting and took his seat in the meeting. Cockrell seemed surprised that the elections for Chair and Vice-Chair had been held before his arrival at the meeting.
The Commissioners agreed to the same bank depositories and the same signatures on bank accounts and the safety deposit box. 
The meeting was adjourned at 4:40 PM.