Last week, the Jackson County Board of Commissioners met with the emergency manager and safety Director Dwayne Cain, to discuss applying for a Rural Economics Action Plan or REAP grant for the Jackson County Rural Fire Chiefs’ Association.
An interlocal agreement between the two entities was reached, and Monday the commissioners approved using the grant money to buy trailers and safety equipment for county rural volunteer fire departments.
With 2.73 inches of rainfall within a two-week period, Cain expects to put that equipment to good use later this year.
“All this rain is priming the area for an increased risk of fires,” Cain said. “Plenty of vegetation to spark once the weather freezes.”
Also on the agenda for the board’s approval, was the allocation of REAP grant funds to purchase a 10-foot drill and portable air compressor as part of an interlocal agreement between the board and the Jackson County Conservation District.
REAP was initiated in 1996, creating three funding sources for water and sewer, streets and bridges, and economic development projects.
The board approved maintenance and repair of water sheds and 50-year old dams around Jackson County.
The commissioners also approved a service exchange agreement with American Fidelity Assurance Company to provide 125 Plan administrative services for Jackson County.
Section 125 Plan is an employee benefits program designed to take advantage of Section 125 of the Internal Revenue Code. It allows employees to pay certain qualified expenses on a pre-tax basis, such as health insurance premiums and other deductible expenses.
Last on the agenda, the commissioners inspected the Jackson County Jail at 600 S. Main St. in Altus per Oklahoma statutes that states that county commissioners “shall inspect the jails in their respective counties at least once each year, and shall fully examine the health, cleanliness and discipline conditions of the jail.”
This inspection is in addition to the State Department of Health’s inspection.
The board of Jackson County commissioners will not be meeting on Sept. 30 for the next scheduled regular meeting due to a lack of quorum.
Reach Katrina Goforth at 580-482-1221, ext. 2077.