No more appointing

911 board pushes for elected board to be on same ballot as tax issue

By Leah Wankum, Editor

If elections for the new 911 board are on the same ballot as the sales tax to fund Ray County 911, the tax has a better chance of passing.

That’s what constituents have been telling Kim Davis, Ray County 911 director. The reason why? The Ray County 911 Board of Directors would become an elected board if voters approve a one-cent sales tax to fund Ray County 911/dispatch services.

If, however, voters approve a sales tax, then state law allows the Ray County Commissioners to appoint the first members of any new, seven-member 911 board. Current 911 board members want to skip the commissioners’ final appointments and put the board’s makeup straight into the hands of the public.

To do so, the commissioners must approve the 911 board’s efforts to place both a one-cent sales tax measure and a separate measure to elect board members on the same ballot. The 911 board wants to place both measures on the April 2018 ballot.

Paul Harris, president of the 911 board, said he will meet with the county commissioners in early August and present both measures to them for their approval. He said the 911 board has no concerns about whether it will gain the commissioners’ approval.

“Initially, they expressed that they wanted the board to be out of their control,” Harris said. “I know that one commissioner said that he would not vote to put it on the ballot unless it was presented that way, an elected board at the same time.”

The complete story is in the Tuesday, August 1, 2017 Richmond News.

Click here for our E-edition and read the rest of the story.

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