I would like to thank the Marshall County Fiscal Court and Judge-Executive Kevin Neal for proclaiming the month of November "First Responders Appreciation Month".
These dedicated men and women are deserving and due such recognition. Every day they face tremendous challenges. Every day their well-being is always in jeopardy. They are the backbone of our society and the strength of our communities.
So, to each and every one of our first responders, I thank you for your dedication and service. You are always in our prayers and thoughts. You will always be our heroes.
Now I would like to address the funding for our new 911 center. First of all, do away with the $7 fee on our electric bill. That fee is without merit. I suggest that the Fiscal Court first look at using the assets that they already have like the use of the old library. This building could be used for the relocation of our sheriff's office. Then we could use the sheriffs office as an extension to the jail making more spaces to house Class D inmates and that will increase our revenue that we receive from the state to house such inmates thus giving us a surplus of funds in our general fund to use for such expenditures as the new 911 building. The Fiscal Court could also increase the insurance tax by a half percent or even one percent to help generate revenue to help pay for our new 911 center.
These are a few ways to help pay for the 911 center and I suggest that the Fiscal Court and Judge Neal become more open to new ideas instead of having the attitude, "It's our way or the highway."
And, by the way, will the new 911 center be the home of our EOC? Also, will this center be coded so that it can withstand a major earthquake or an EF3 or greater tornado?
In closing, I wonder if the new, overpaid 911 director will ever put on a 50 lb. set of bunker gear and go fight a structure fire or put on a police vest and 30 lbs. of extra gear and pursue a fugitive or will he be a seat warmer? Only time will tell.
Once, again, thank you to our first responders.