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Lauderdale supervisors consider budget issues

By By Sheila Blackmon/The Meridian Star
Lauderdale County supervisors are expected to consider purchasing $34,560 worth of computer equipment for the Circuit Court at their regular meeting Monday a purchase that could result in a $25,000 budget amendment.
They discussed the equipment, $26,500 in software and $8,060 in hardware, at a work session Thursday. County Administrator Rex Hiatt told supervisors the purchase may mean adding $25,000 to the Circuit Court's budget later in the year.
Hiatt said Circuit Judges Larry Roberts and Robert Bailey, Court Administrator Dana Wedgeworth and Circuit Clerk Donna Jill Johnson chose the software they wanted and turned their request in to the Data Processing Committee. The members of that committee are Data Processing Manager Kim Poe, data processing employee Tim Chesney, District 3 Supervisor Craig Hitt and District 2 Supervisor Jimmie Smith.
They chose a PTS Software program partly because it is compatible with existing PTS Software used at the Lauderdale County Detention Facility. The new software would allow Circuit Court officials and employees to view mug shots.
He said all Circuit Court employees will be able to use the software for their various jobs case scheduling and accounting, for example. The software also has a lot of "expandability," he said, so if officials decide to install the system at County or Justice Court or the district attorney's office later, they could purchase a license for about $4,500 instead of buying more software.
The hardware would be purchased from InfoWorks in Madison.
Supervisors will also consider contracting to have personal property assessed. Tax Assessor Jimmy Slay brought figures to the board so they could compare potential costs to those in surrounding counties.
He said he doesn't know if supervisors will use an outside contractor for the work.
Smith said if supervisors contract the work, there would still be a "point-person" in the tax assessor's office for complaints and questions.
Sheila Blackmon is a staff writer for The Meridian Star. E-mail her at