Money to pay election costs approved by Quorum Court

With no dissent, the Jefferson County Quorum Court approved legislation Monday that will provide funds for the Jefferson County Board of Election Commissioners to pay for the upcoming elections.

Election Coordinator Will Fox asked for $150,000, but County Judge Dutch King said during committee meetings last week that only $115,000 was currently available, and King said Fox said that should cover the costs of not only the political party primaries next week but also the expected runoffs in several races.

According to a letter from Fox to King, the State Board of Election Commissioners will send the county $30,000 and there will be “substantial reimbursements made to the general fund for the political party primaries.

Also Monday the county’s legislative body approved a $53,900 appropriation to County Buildings that will pay for improvements to the Sulphur Springs Park and the Jefferson County Coroner’s Office.

The Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism awarded the county $45,000 for the park, with those funds designated for use in construction of playground equipment, a pavilion with picnic tables, a half-court basketball court and Americans with Disabilities Act-compliant accessible walkways and parking.

The Southeast Arkansas Economic Development District kicked in an additional $8,900 from General Improvement Funds to help with funding for renovations at the coroner’s office, which included a viewing room, new roof and improvements to the air conditioning and heating system.

An appropriation ordinance of $71,800 for construction of the new sheriff’s office building was also approved, and according to the ordinance, the money will be applied only to expenses that have been incurred to date, including architectural fees for drawings for the second phase of the building.

Those funds were generated from an auction of guns that the sheriff’s office conducted, and the ordinance also calls for a $400 appropriation that will be used to repay a person who bought a gun at the auction but then returned it because the serial number was missing.