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County staff treated to lunch
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Newton County held an appreciation luncheon for employees Thursday at the Turner Lake Complex.

County Chairman Keith Ellis said officials estimated 450 employees would attend the gathering, which was funded by the Board of Commissioners, chairman’s office, constitutional officers’ departments, water resources, information systems, human resources, fire services, Senior Services, the Recreation Commission and the FFA-FCCLA Camp.

Door prizes were also given out.

"We want the employees to know they are appreciated, especially this time of year. We may tell them they are appreciated; today we exhibited that in deed," Ellis said.

"They’re the ones who provide the important day-to-day services for the citizens.

"A well-trained employee who derives job satisfaction and knows (he or she) is appreciated will perform well," Ellis said.

Briefs from Tuesday’s Board of Commissioners’ meeting:

• County Manager John Middleton said the county has collected $103,000 in building permit fees halfway through its fiscal year and is on pace to greatly exceed its revenue budget of $110,000. Middleton said the budgeted amount was based on past building activity, so the numbers show activity is increasing.

• The Board of Commissioners voted to give a $199 car tax refund to a citizen who paid the annual ad valorem tax on his car early, but then had the car totaled in an accident before his birthday.

The board decided it would handle such instances on a case-by-case basis, given the likely rarity of such a situation.