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New Barbour playgrounds swing into operation this spring

December 5, 2012
By Melissa Toothman - Staff Writer ( , The Inter-Mountain

New playground equipment at the Barbour County Fairgrounds will swing into operation this spring, officials said.

Ricky Hymes, Jr., a parks and recreations official, discussed two sets of playground equipment that were installed at the Barbour County Fairgrounds during Monday's meeting of the Barbour County Commission.

The two playground sets are within close proximity of each other. One is designed for children up to 6 years old, and the other is designed for children ages 6 through 12. The parks are closed for the winter and will open April 18, Hymes said.

The playground designed for the younger age group includes at least three slides in a single fixture, a hippo to climb on and a plastic tree house. The other playground includes a system of monkey bars, a fireman's pole and more. Both playgrounds include a bench for parents to relax while watching their children play.

The construction of the playgrounds was funded through a $17,000 federal grant, Chuck Foley, county administrator, said.

Also during Monday's meeting:

- Commissioners approved budget adjustments at the meeting that included the $17,000 federal grant as part of a combined total of $38,722 in federal fund increases, Foley said. He added that there was a $171,069 increase in state funds as well.

- In other financial business, commissioners closed the oil and gas severance fund and renamed the fund Coal Reallocation Severance Fund. As of Oct. 31, the current fund labeled Oil and Gas Severance has a balance of $3,759.46. That balance will be transferred to the General County Fund and can be used for economic development projects, Foley said.

- The commission meeting also included an executive session within the first hour at the request of Sheriff John Hawkins to discuss litigations.

- Prosecuting Attorney Leckta Poling and County Clerk Macel Auvil both requested that commissioners consider expanding the number of personnel in their departments.

"I'm asking the commission to consider allowing me to advertise for a full-time assistant prosecuting attorney as well as a paralegal or any alternative paralegal and an investigator," Poling said. "I spend a lot of my time driving different places to obtain records to do research."

Poling said she had a secretary and a part-time employee, but it wasn't sufficient to handle the case load of her office.

"I would like to expand my office staff as well to be able to help me keep up with the needs of the litigation of the county," Poling said.

Auvil also requested a new full-time position in her office.

Commissioners were curious if the part-time help Poling hired would be interested in the possible full-time position. Poling said she has mentioned it to him, but she wasn't sure he would take it because of other responsibilities he performed elsewhere. Auvil also has part-time help that could be converted into a full-time position. No decisions were made in either request for additional personnel at this time.



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