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Commission passes resolution to improve voting

LaFAYETTE — The Chambers County Commission approved several resolutions relating to benefits for county residents during its Monday meeting.

One of these resolutions approved the issuing of bids for a new county Poll Book system. These state-of-the-art electronic systems are starting to replace paper books that list all eligible voters in a district or precinct. The new ones, usually tablets or laptops, contain the same information that can be accessed in quicker and more efficient ways.

“This is something that we as a commission have been working on for a long period of time. Thankfully it has finally come to fruition,” said Commission Attorney Skip McCoy. “I think this is really a step in the right direction. There are very few counties in the state of Alabama that do have this currently, so we would be on the cutting edge.”

Another resolution passed would bring money back to the county. According to McCoy, in 2009 a company by the name of Commercial Spring and Tool put in a bid to operate in LaFayette. After receiving a $150,000 tax abatement agreement from the county, the company failed to deliver.

“There’s been continuous delays and continuous nonperformance on their behalf,” McCoy said. “Several months ago, you authorized me to send a demand to them and to the city of LaFayette in regards to returning our $150,000 that we invested in that project, which we saw no return on.”

The money will be returned to the county for use in future projects.

“The only thing you could have done better was to have gotten interest on our money,” Commissioner Debbie Wood joked to McCoy.

Commissioners also unanimously passed a resolution to execute an agreement with the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency for grant proceeds of $197,500. The grant resolution, presented to the commission by County Manager Regina Chambers in the place of her husband and Drug Task Force Captain Robert Chambers, will go towards the Region D Drug Task Force in fiscal year 2019.

The Greater Valley Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Ashley Crane was present at the meeting to provide the organization’s quarterly report.

From April to June, Chamber of Commerce membership increased by 14 and there have been several events for members.

Crane discussed events that will be held later this year and highlighted a new partnership with Bradshaw Library and Universal Class that will provide over 500 continuing education classes.

“For our residents who are underemployed, or are looking to transition to another job and need a certain skill set that they may not be able to otherwise obtain, they actually get the training within their reach at no charge,” she said.