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Posted: August 9, 2012 8:04 p.m.

Library supporters seek help from commissioners

About two-dozen supporters with the Friends of the Library made an appearance at the Newton County Board of Commissioners meeting on Tuesday night to show their support in asking for help to fix the funding woes at the Newton County Library.

Newton County Magistrate Court Judge Kim Degonia spoke on behalf of the group. Degonia talked about the problems the library faced and the lack of a children's librarian. She asked commissioners to form a subcommittee to figure out ways to help solve some of those problems.

County Commission Chairman Kathy Morgan and Commissioner Nancy Schulz volunteered to serve on the subcommittee. There was no decision made on whether or not to give any additional money to the library.

Degonia also attended the city of Covington council meeting on Monday night. City council members Hawnethia Williams, Ocie Franklin and Mayor Ronnie Johnston also agreed to serve on the subcommittee.

Degonia said she plans to meet with the county and city officials who volunteered to serve on the committee within the next two weeks. She said she hopes they can find ways to provide additional funding to the library.

In other business, county commissioners approved an Interagency Services Agreement (ISA) with the Newton County Board of Education.

BOE contracted with American Traffic Solutions, Inc. to use recorded images for enforcement of the prohibition on unlawfully passing a school bus.

Newton County Sheriff Ezell Brown, BOE board member Dennis Carpenter and a representative from American Traffic Solutions, Inc. presented the agreement to the board.

Brown said the Newton County Sheriff's Office has agreed to enforce civil and criminal laws, investigate suspected violations of traffic laws and issue citations to motorists who are found unlawfully passing school buses.

According to the agreement, BOE will pay BOC 50 percent of any revenue received from any traffic violations to offset expenses regarding the implementation and ongoing operation of the program. BOE will receive the other 50 percent from those violations. The revenue from those violations would be paid on a monthly basis.

Also at the meeting, county commissioners gave Juvenile Services permission to apply for a continuation of $144,000 in funding from the Governor's Office for Children System of Care program, to complete an application for $7,500 in funding from the Council of Juvenile Court Judges of Georgia, and to accept $30,495 in funding from the Department of Human Services Promoting Safe and Stable Families program.

Commissioners also approved a Neighborhood Stabilization Program contract with Habitat for Humanity of Newton County for disposition of properties.


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