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Commissioners’ Court to pay $25,560
By Dakota McDonald/Post Dispatch—
The contract for indigent defense in the 106th Judicial District Court of Texas, which covers Dawson, Gaines, Garza and Lynn counties, was approved during the Sept. 29 Garza County Commissioners Court.
The agreement between Garza County and The Law Offices of Arthur (Artie) Aguilar, Jr. states that Aguilar will provide legal representation for indigent criminal defendants in Garza County. Through the contract, Garza County will pay $2,130 to per month, or $25,560 for the contract year, to Aguilar for services at the trial court level.
Dawson County will pay $2,482.50 monthly or $29,790 annually, Gaines County will pay $1,989.75 monthly or $23,877 yearly and Lynn County will pay $897.75 monthly or $10,773 yearly for a combined total of $90,000 for the contract period which began Oct. 1 and will end on Sept. 30, 2021.
County Judge Lee Norman said while details of the contract have remained the same, the judicial district court expects an increased case load.
Tax Assessor/Collector Nancy Wallace told the court she is in the process of preparing tax statements and residents should expect to receive them in the mail shortly. Some households could have received them as soon as Friday, Oct. 2.
In other business, Normal reported the Post Volunteer Fire Department received new air packs.
The portable air tanks, which allow the firefighters to breathe while in toxic smoke conditions, were purchased from the Lubbock Fire Department. The equipment is an upgrade from the current air packs being used. The city and county will split the costs.
In county reports, the Emergency Management Coordinator Michael Isbell updated the court on the replacement of the portable police radios that have become out-of-date. Isbell said he is currently applying for a Coronavirus, Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) grant to replace the 20 radios. Should the grant not work, Isbell said he is looking into another grant to use. The radios that are currently in use are out-of-date and can no longer be repaired due to the original company no longer producing parts for the radios.
Sheriff Terry Morgan reported the jail count is currently at 80 total inmates, 32 of which are out-of-county.
Morgan also informed the court that the Texas Association of Counties (TAC) Program will be allowing law enforcement personnel to earn their continuing certification credits for free beginning Oct. 1.
Additionally, the court approved the TAC Cybersecurity Course Enrollment Form. Under state law, all elected officials and any local government employee who has access to a local government computer system or database must complete a cybersecurity training program certified by the Texas Department of Information Resources annually. Training should be completed by June 14, 2021.
The next regular meeting is scheduled for 9 a.m., Oct. 12.