CHARLESTON - Mississippi County commissioners approved $2,000 to help the Mississippi County Rescue Squad purchase a new "jaws of life."
At Thursday's county commission meeting, Mike Palmer of the Mississippi County Rescue Squad asked commissioners on behalf of the squad for "one-time extra help so we can go ahead and purchase the jaws."
Palmer said the squad has been saving for about two years toward a replacement for the present jaws of life which were purchased used over 20 years ago.
The squad had lacked $5,000 but recently received a $3,000 grant from the Southern Foundation leaving only $2,000 to raise.
The total cost for the new unit is $15,084, discounted from $17,000, according to Palmer.
In other Mississippi County news:
* County officials reviewed a report on the April 8 visit by a loss control inspector from Hartford Insurance Company. Hartford provides property insurance coverage for the county's buildings, according to Junior DeLay, county clerk.
The report listed three items found during the inspection of the courthouse and detention center.
A door found propped open with a block of wood during the inspection of the juvenile center was identified as a smoke-control door that, if it is to be propped open, should be held open electronically and linked to the fire alarm system so it will close automatically in the event of a fire.
The inspector also reported seeing a portable space heater with a missing supporting leg. Jail officials reportedly have replaced the heater with an approved unit and advised the central heating and cooling system can be adjusted to control the room's temperature.
The inspector also advised placards need to be placed on the sprinkler control risers at the jail with information about the system.
* DeLay reviewed correspondence from the Missouri Association of Counties advising the county's premium will be reduced by a dividend credit of $4,662.
The MAC provides workman's compensation coverage for participating counties.
The dividends are disbursed to participating entities based on their premium and the financial status of the MAC, according to DeLay.
The premium is billed at the end of the year, according to DeLay. The county's premium before the dividend credit was $35,752.
* The new rail car bridge on County Road 324 at Ditch 14 south of Charleston will be open Monday, according to Jim Blumenberg, presiding commissioner.
* A fax from Bill Green advised of a change in county's in-kind match for the rural water project's Community Development Block Grant.
DeLay explained that instead of keeping track of time spent obtaining easements for the project for an in-kind match, the county will use the cost of making copies and recording fees as the county's contribution.
* Commissioners moved forward with the plan to plant oak and dogwood trees at the Oak Grove Cemetery, agreeing to purchase 10 oaks, spaced 50 feet apart, and nine dogwoods to go in between them.
Blumenberg said he would look for oaks between 12-15 feet high.
* The county will widen Spanish Grant Road as previously discussed by commissioners.
Blumenberg said he believes the county already has plenty of right-of-way. "We're just going to have to move a whole lot of mailboxes," he said.
Officials hope to widen the road by at least two feet and maybe as much as three feet to accommodate the increased traffic along that route. "It's just too congested," said Blumenberg.
* County officials will proceed with a memorial to be constructed using the old courthouse's columns by hiring a concrete worker to lay a supporting slab for the structure.
* Commissioners reviewed a letter dated April 18 from Jo Ann Seal advising she was resigning from the Senior Citizens Tax Advisory Board effective April 19.
* Commissioners reviewed a memo from Buddy Marshall, public administrator, advising his office will be closed May 8-10.
* The budget was amended following a public hearing to include a law enforcement block grant and the community gun violence prosecution program grant.