The regular order of Quorum Court business last Thursday evening was short. County Judge Jerry Holmes asked for a report from the Employee Handbook Committee chaired by Chad Evans (R-District 6). Evans stated that the Association of Arkansas Counties (AAC) were meeting on Saturday and that there were a couple of things about which the committee needed the AAC’s input. Until he met with them in Little Rock Saturday, he wouldn’t have anything new to report.

The only unfinished business on the agenda concerned the county website. The website hasn’t been updated in two years and is owned by an outside person. The QC is sorting out how to acquire the website and the county run it so that it can be updated on a more regular basis. Until this information is better understood, the QC had no solution to present at this meeting.

Sam Henegar (R-District 2), sponsored an ordinance to amend the Circuit Clerk’s employee salary budget by an increase of $375 for fiscal year 2017. There was a full-time position in the Circuit Clerk’s office that was filled prior to January 2017 and that person was eligible to receive the full standard $750 annual raise. When the 2017 budget was approved, only a $375 annual raise was allotted for the vacant position. The increase changed the employee salary budget in the clerk’s office from $151,664.48 to $152,039.48.

It was announced by the County Prosecutor’s Office that a picnic will by sponsored by the Drug Court in Spring Park to be held on May 27, the Memorial Day weekend. The time for the picnic will be 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. Judge Holmes announced that the County Wide Clean Up Day had been moved to April 22nd to coincide with Earth Day.

During Public Comments, Hugh Graves, a resident of Tumbling Shoals, asked to be recognized by the QC. Graves stated that the citizens living along Highway 5 were tired of dealing with the Jake brake noise caused from water, sand, logging and other large trucks. Tumbling Shoals is an unincorporated city and under state law can’t pass noise ordinance prohibiting Jake brakes.

Steve Choate (I-District 9), asked Graves if these trucks were braking on inclines or curves in the road.

“There’s a section from Centennal Street to the music place just south of the post office that’s a flat, straight way. There are no curves or inclines in that section making it unnecessary for Jake brakes to be applied by the truck drivers,” responded Graves.

“If I remember correctly, I don’t think the county can pass a noise ordinance for a state highway,” pointed out Alan Malone (R-District 5) to the QC members. “We considered this before for another noise issue on a state highway. I think all we can do is pass a resolution and it be sent to the state and they take it from there.”

Graves stated that he had talked to the state highway department and they told him that the county would have to do something. Drew Smith, County Attorney, said he would research the issue and report back his findings to the QC. The meeting was then adjourned.