Fiscal Court

Webster County Fiscal Court met in regular session on Monday. The meeting was closed to the public, but lived streamed to Facebook due to COVID-19 concerns.

Webster County Fiscal Court met in a regular session on Monday at the Webster County Senior Center in Dixon, with tighter than normal restrictions on who was allowed to attend due to concern about COVID-19 (the Coronavirus). Only elected officials, the county treasurer, the EMA director and the media were allowed to attend the meeting in person. The meeting itself was live streamed online for members of the community who wished to attend.

The biggest news to come out of that meeting was an Executive Order from Judge Executive Steve Henry to suspend the county’s Solid Waste Center usage policy from April first through June 30.

For the last year, anyone wishing to use one of the three solid waste centers around the county were required to either purchase a permit or buy special order garbage bags provided by the county.

With county and municipal offices currently closed to walk-in traffic due to COVID-19, its become impossible for the county to provide customers with enough bags to meet their needs.

To meet that need, Henry deemed it necessary to lift the restriction in order to meet customer needs.

Customers who have already purchased bags and permits are urged to keep them. The centers will not require either from April 1 until the end of June.

Customers who have a current tag will be given credit for the remaining time during the period that begins July 1.

From now until April 1, the current rules will remain in effect.

“We hate to do this because are sales are up and things are going well,” said Magistrate Tony Felker. “But its the situation we are in as a state and country.”

The county began to charge for use of the solid waste centers July 1, 2019 after seeing considerable losses in coal severance dollars, which had been used to keep the facilities free for around 30 years.

“It is not a fun decision,” said Judge Executive Steve Henry when the matter was voted in last June. “We’ve tried to do our best to do what is best for our citizens. But we’re going from a service that has been free for more than thirty years, with no tax payer funding, to one people are going to have to pay for. We can’t afford to provide it free of charge any longer.”

Henry and the county’s three magistrates worked on making the program solvent for more than a year, even going so far as to personally pass out fliers to customers at the compaction centers.

Contact Matt Hughes at matt@journalenterprise.com or 270-667-2069