CHARLESTON - Mississippi County commissioners approved additional security measures for the courthouse during their regular meeting Thursday.
County Clerk Junior DeLay confirmed the additional measures are related to the security breach at the courthouse Aug. 31 which was discovered after authorities were alerted to an arson attempt at Charleston City Hall next door to the courthouse.
"It's going to cost less than $2,000 to do it," DeLay said.
In related news, the city's insurance company had added $7,500 in reward money to the city's original $5,000 for a total of $12,500 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for the attempted arson.
Those with information are urged to contact the Charleston Department of Public Safety at 683-3737.
In other Mississippi County business discussed during Thursday's meeting, commissioners agreed that when Tommy Jones decides he no longer wants to harvest hay surrounding the county airport, commissioners will just draw a name to select the next person who will have the privilege.
Presiding Commissioner Jim Blumenberg said he has been approached by about three people who have asked the county to put the job out for bid so they could have a chance at getting the hay, but commissioners agreed bidding the job out would just create "headaches" for county officials.
Commissioners explained the agreement is for the hay to be harvested in exchange for keeping it mowed which eliminates the need to have county crews mow the area. By this arrangement, county officials can ensure the maintenance does not interfere with air traffic at the airport.
The concern, according to commissioners, is that if the job is put up for bid, the person who gets the job would infer they have a right to harvest the hay whenever they wanted to.
Using the lottery system to award the agreement for three-year periods would allow the harvester to fertilize the area to ensure there is a good hay crop, which is what Jones does, according to commissioners.