CHARLESTON -- Mississippi County commissioners read and adopted a resolution during their regular meeting Thursday recognizing Kathie Simpkins, East Prairie's city administrator, "for the tremendous public service that she has provided to and for the citizens of Mississippi County."
"She's done a lot of work for the county and for the city of East Prairie," said Presiding Commissioner Jim Blumenberg.
A county resident suggested the resolution during the June 22 County Commission meeting as Simpkins has continued her public service even after being diagnosed with cancer five years ago and enduring treatments that in many cases render people unable to work.
"She's very deserving," said Lonnie Thurmond, community developer and assistant city administrator for East Prairie. "I've worked with her since 1989 back when I was alderman. After I became mayor in 1993 I worked more closely with her. Everything she did, she did it for the whole community. She really puts her heart and soul in everything."
Thurmond said that even when Simpkins is unable to come in to work, she stays in close contact with him and he relies on her expertise.
"She's still a vital part of this city and is still the administrator of the city," he said. "She's one of the best administrators I've ever known. She never married she never had children -- this was her life. The city's her family. We're all very supportive of her."
The resolution notes that "public servitude is essential to a healthy economy, the development of communities and the well-being of individuals" and that Simpkins "has engaged in public servitude for her country, state, county, and her hometown throughout her adult life."
The resolution also notes that "Simpkins has earned the utmost respect for her ability, professionalism, and commitment to her job from her peers and those for whom she has served."
In other business Thursday:
* Commissioners agreed to sell the county's 1975 Dodge truck that was formerly used as a vehicle for undercover drug investigations.
Blumenberg said a county resident asked to purchase the vehicle for spare parts.
"It hasn't been started in over five years," he said. "It's just an old beat up truck."
* Col. David Holland of Brentwood, Tenn., who has farms in Mississippi County, congratulated commissioners on the condition of gravel roads near his land.
"They've done a wonderful job down there," he said.
Blumenberg said the county has had a lot of success with snowstone gravel. "It's been a lifesaver -- makes a good road," he said.
Holland said there is a problem on County Road 521 at a 24-inch pipe for a driveway entrance. "It needs to be bigger," he said.
He also mentioned the levee road also has a lot of potholes that need to be addressed.
Commissioner Martin Lucas said the county is doing the best it can considering its road and bridge budget has not grown for seven years while fuel prices have climbed.
* Commissioners noted the next county Senate Bill 40 board meeting is scheduled for 3 p.m. July 12 at the Clara Drinkwater Newnam Library in Charleston.
* Absentee voting for the August election began Tuesday, according to County Clerk Junior DeLay.