Judge Judy Spree signs proclamation: November is National Adoption Month

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Shown above center Probate Judge Judy Spree, Jacqueline Woods,Service /APS supervisor, Beverly Vester, AP Work/Q.A/ Coordinator: Latonya Wooley Foster Care/Adoption Worker, Kimberly Tyree, CA/N Investigator and Jimmie Zoppi, Fannie Smith, Mattie Gray, Minnie Knox all Adoptive Parents

Greene County Probate Judge Judy Spree signs annual proclamation, in presence of Department of Human Services staff and several adoptive parents, citing November as National Adoption Month. The following is the statement submitted by DHR
As a nation that believes all children deserve the chance to reach their full potential, we have a fundamental responsibility to ensure each of them grows up knowing the love and protection of a permanent family. During National Adoption Month, we give voice to the children who are still waiting for that opportunity, celebrate the bond that unites adoptive parents with their sons and daughters, and recommit to providing every child with care and security that will nurture their development and well being.
All young people deserve a safe place to live, and with each passing year, more children know the warmth and comfort of a loving family thanks to adoptive parents.

People who adopt do so for a variety of reasons, but they are united in the kindness and devotion they show toward children- the people who need it most. During National Adoption Month, we recognize the selflessness of adoptive families, and we thank them for opening their hearts and their doors to young people in need of a safe, stable place to call home.
Thousand of children living in America hope for the comfort an safety of a loving family. This month, we pay tribute to the dedicated professional who help make those children’s dreams a reality, sharpen our resolve to find a permanent home for every child, and celebrate the stories of all whose live have been touched by adoption.
When people adopt, they open up a world of promise and possibility by providing a steady supportive environment for youth to live in. The month of November marks National Adoption Month, when we unite as families, advocates, and communities, and as a country, to raise awareness of the barriers to adoption and recommit ourselves to moving more of our young people into permanent homes.
As we come together to give thanks and show our appreciation for professional who work tirelessly to ensure the adoption process runs smoothly and efficiently, we celebrate the stories of those who have been permanently and positively affected by adoption. During National Adoption Month, let use embrace the unique place adoptive families have in American, and let us extend our fullest gratitude to all those who have welcomed home a child in need.

Commission names John Robert Isley II as Assistant County Engineer

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The Greene County Commission held a work session on Wednesday, January 4 and its regular meeting on Monday, January 9, 2017.
The Commission appointed John Robert Isley II to the position of Assistant County Engineer to assist Willie Branch, County Engineer. Isley is a native of Springfield, Ohio who attended Alabama A&M University in Normal, Alabama and graduated in 2007 with a B. S. degree in Civil Engineering from A&M.
Isley has eight years experience with private engineering firms including Civil Solutions LLC of Huntsville (now Goodwin, Mills and Caywood), Geo Solutions, LLC and Babbs Engineering Consultants, LLC.
“Greene County is the first public organization that I have worked with but I bring a skill set with similar projects in the private sector,” said Isley. He is not married and plans to live in Greene County.
“ I went to Alabama A & M because I wanted to go to an HBCU which had all the engineering classes that I needed. It was a good choice for me and I urge young people who are interested in STEM fields (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) to study hard and you can achieve any goal you set for yourself. Be patient and ask questions, people will help you learn, develop and grow on the job, “said Isley.”
Paula Bird, Chief Financial Officer gave the Commission a financial updated report for the first quarter of the 2016-17 fiscal year from October 1 to December 31, 2016. The Commission had $4.3 million in all bank accounts, plus $681,728 in bond sinking funds and an additional $390,094 and $86,031 in other bond servicing funds. The expenditures are within the 25% range, which is on target with the quarterly budget requirements.
In the General Fund, which covers salaries and expenses for most basic county services, $803,338 (26%) of the $3,143, 228 budget has been expended to December 31, 2016. The Commission approved $445,897 to pay all bills and claims for last month.

The Commission has received bids on the lighting project for the inside and outside of the Eutaw Activity Center. The bids are being evaluated for several factors and no action was taken at this meeting on this project, which is funded by grants.
Willie Branch, County Engineer reported that the solid waste exemption period has ended for persons on fixed incomes to apply for garbage stickers. Garbage will not be picked up unless the garbage can has the appropriate sticker, which has a number that has been assigned by the Solid Waste Department. Stickers are not available from the garbage truck operators but are issued only at the Greene County Engineers office.
Phillis Belcher, Executive Director of the Greene County Industrial Development Authority reported on an anticipated expansion of the WestRock box manufacturing plant in the Eutaw Industrial Park, which is expected to begin in the next six months. She will return to report on more of the details when they are available for action by the Commission.
The Commission requested and heard a report on the work of the Community Services Program of West Alabama which offers services to low income people in the Greene County community including help with utility bills, weatherization of homes, food pantry, Headstart and other programs. The Commission urged CSP of West Alabama to do more outreach and contact new people about its services instead of cycling the same people through each time. Latonji Hamilton who made the presentation for CSP promised to do a better job in the future.
The Commission approved travel for the County Engineer and Assistant County Engineer to attend training and regional meetings.
Probate Judge Judy Spree presented a resolution at the work session from the Alpha Epsilon Iota chapter of Phi Theta Kappa at Shelton State Community College concerning an honors project for Greene County officials to symbolically reaffirm their oath of office and maintain ethical standards of operation. The Commission at the regular meeting tabled the resolution.