Ordinance for juvenile pay-for-stay could be considered by Jefferson County Quorum Court

If Jefferson County officials can get it ready in time, a proposed ordinance that would establish a pay-for-stay fee for youth at the juvenile detention center will be considered by the Quorum Court when it meets Monday at 5:30 p.m. at the county courthouse.

The ordinance was recommended by the Finance Committee of the county’s legislative body after a meeting Friday afternoon and is designed to try and help solve a predicted shortfall of almost $500,000 in the public safety and detention facilities sales tax collections this year.

The adult jail currently charges inmates $58.75 per day for each day they are held, while the juvenile center charges a fee only for holding state detainees or those from other counties.

Also to be considered Monday is a resolution authorizing an agreement between Sheriff Gerald Robinson and the Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department to maintain and landscape the Martha Mitchell Expressway this year.

The sheriff’s department would use members of the Clean Team to do the work, which would include picking up litter and mowing along the expressway from Market Street/U.S. 63 at the end of the curb, to the end of the curb and gutter median just north of the stoplight at Bryant Street on the north end of the expressway.

The county would be paid $16 per acre for picking up and removing litter, and $50 per acre for mowing, according to the proposed agreement, and members of the Clean Team would be required to perform three mowing cycles between April 20 and the day before Thanksgiving.

That resolution was approved by the court’s Finance Committee last week.

Other items on the agenda that were previously approved by committees of the court include:

• An appropriation ordinance establishing a 2013 budget for the Watson Chapel Water District Generator Project of $3,675, the amount that was left over from a $66,000 grant the water district received from the Arkansas Economic Development Commission in 2012.

• An appropriation ordinance establishing a 2013 budget for the FINS (Families in Need of Services) and Truancy Fund of $53,000. The Arkansas Department of Human Services-Division of Youth Services awarded juvenile court $38,000, and another $15,000 was received from the city of Pine Bluff for the fund.

• An appropriation ordinance totaling $33,094.57 for the Sixth Division of Circuit Court-Juvenile Court, with the money coming from a variety of sources. The funds will be used to support the Juvenile Teen Court, Juvenile Drug Court, for professional services, drug testing and other items.

• An appropriation ordinance that will amend the 2013 budgets of the County Road and Solid Waste Departments to reflect restructuring positions within both departments. No additional money will be required.

• An appropriation ordinance amending the 2013 County General Fund to reflect changes in the salary and benefits of the Accounts Manager who has been assigned additional duties and Access Control Manager. The ordinance increases the salary of that person by $3,752, including benefits.