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Barrow shuffles money for various projects

WINDER - On a night of largely housekeeping matters Tuesday, the Barrow County Commission dealt with an array of issues.

Specifically, the commission:

· Approved County Human Resource Director Norma Jean Brown's request to restore two law clerks' salaries from those reduced by the county's reduction in force last month. It also approved Brown's request to raise salaries of 10 of 89 employees in the county's fire and paramedic department, a difference of about $10,000 to be spent from that department's already approved budget.

· Approved Purchasing Director Bob Hohe's request to auction five surplussed county vehicles on govdeals.com. Hohe said auction of eight vehicles previously garnered nearly $12,000.

· Approved 13 pages of quarterly budget amendments brought by Chief Financial Officer Beth Horacek, the net of which required $74,000 be pulled from the county's reserves. She reported that of the $274,000 needed to fund the county's detention facility through the fiscal year's end in September, $200,000 could be provided by the Sheriff's office, requiring the difference from reserves. Her amendments were passed by a 5-1 vote with only Commissioner Larry Joe Wilburn objecting.

· Approved Sheriff Jud Smith's request to spend approximately $20,000 to replace a wrecked police car. That was roughly $5,000 less than the insurance company's settlement, and he offered that difference to the county.

· Approved the mile-long first phase of the 53/316 pipeline project to connect sewer between the Barber Creek plant on Highway 316 near Barber Creek Road with the Kerala Gardens retirement community at Highway 53 near Robertson Bridge. Waste Water Services Director Mark Whiddon said the phase's approximate $225,000 cost, the lowest of 18 bids, will be paid for by Kerala's developer, not the county.