Houston County Courier - Local News
Stories Added - August 2008
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Letter to the Editor - City Budget
Houston County Courier - August 2008

The public hearing on the 2009 fiscal year Crockett city budget is scheduled for 6 p.m., Monday, Aug. 18.
The city is not immune to the increasing cost of goods and services for city operations.
It is difficult to continue its needed level of services without an increase in revenue and cutting cost wherever possible.
Many hours have been spent studying the budget line item by line item to reduce cost.
I brought up the issue of fixed vehicle allowances at the Monday, July 21 workshop.
The methodology of determining if a fixed vehicle allowance and in what amount should be given an employee is not addressed in the employee handbook.
I cannot vote for increasing city service rates and continuing the police chief's $5,400 per year vehicle allowance for the following reasons:

  1. On June 21, 2007 the council adopted a Crockett Police Department Policy and Procedure Manual. The manual prohibits officers from using a non-city vehicle for enforcement of some traffic violations.
  2. The city has unused police vehicles. The chief could use one of these vehicles and not have his police functions limited while on city business. I also believe the presence of a police vehicle is positive to law enforcement at any time.
  3. The chief's scheduled workday is 8 a.m.-5 p.m. five days per week. It appears that out of the possible 260 workdays per year, his available "on the job" time equals 136 days per year.

Figured by: 14 holidays, 20 vacation days and off one-half day, five days per week for 180 days teaching for the Crockett Independent School District. (one-half of 180 - 90 whole days).
This equates to approximately $200 per week vehicle allowance for the 136 days.
The police chief and some others on the council do not concur with my assessments.
Please attend the public hearing and express your opinion.

James Hall
















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