By Will Johnson
HOUSTON COUNTY – During the Tuesday, June 13 meeting of the Houston County Commissioners Court, three new members were appointed to the Houston County Child Welfare Board.
The three newly appointed members are Tami Bruner, Peggy Reeves and Janet Wilmeth.
Board member Pastor Tim Allen expressed his gratitude to the three ladies who had volunteered to serve and informed the court he had recently been asked to serve as president of the Texas Council of Child Welfare Boards.
“A lot of the time we don’t hear about anything that goes on with Child Protective Services (CPS) or know anything about CPS until they come to your family,” Allen said.
“I want to tell you that CPS is doing a great job working on the oversight for them (the child welfare board) and the state. So much so that and because we have done a lot for them in Region Five, they have asked me to be president of the state board beginning in September. Mainly it has to do with the relationship we have not only the commissioners court, but in the community and during Child Abuse Awareness month,” he said.
“We appreciate these three women who are coming on to the board and especially Wanda (Nichols) who has kept this going on for years,” the pastor said.
A motion was made and unanimously approved to accept the appointments of Bruner, Reeves and Wilmeth.
As the meeting continued, a presentation from E3 Entegral Solutions representative Doug Kirkley was provided to the commissioners in regard to available energy performance contracts for the county.
“Performance contracting was built to help address deferred maintenance and to get it paid for out of your existing budget. That is the big premise of performance contracting. You should not have to increase budgets and taxpayer dollars to pay for these deferred maintenance repairs,” Kirkley said.
“E3 has been in the business for about nine years and the three E’s stand for experienced, effective and efficient,” he added.
After giving a brief background on the company, Kirkley said the company was a Texas-based company which established a model “… of working with lower margins which allows us to compete with the other companies out there. We work on an 18 to 22 percent gross margin while the competitors work on a 25 to 35 percent gross margin. At the end of the day, we can do more work for less money than others can.”
A committee has been formed to evaluate submissions of Requests for Qualifications (RFQs) for the design/maintenance of plant/process improvements under an energy services performance contracts.
The committee consists of: County Judge Jim Lovell, County Auditor Melissa Mosley, Precinct Four Commissioner Kennon Kellum, County Maintenance Supervisor Willie Spurlock and IT Director Brent Williams.
The county has received RFQs from Johnson Controls, The Way Company and now E3 Entegral Solutions.
In other matters brought before the court:
- The commissioners approved the minutes from previous meetings.
- The payment of bills and expenses incurred by the county were approved.
- Line item budget amendments were approved by the court.
- The Houston County Environmental Report was received as information by the commissioners.
- The court approved a six month pay increase for a court bailiff, along with salaries for a part-time cook at the Houston County Senior Citizen’s Center and a part-time District Court Coordinator.
- A motion to declare a 140 M 3 motograder in Precinct Three as surplus was tabled for further consideration.
- An updated DETCOG Regional Mutual Aid Agreement was approved by the court.
- The commissioners approved the renewal of insurance with the Texas Association of Counties in the areas of: auto liability/physical damage; general liability; and public officials’ liability as well as law enforcement liability. Employee health benefit coverage was tabled for further consideration.
Will Johnson may be reached via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.