Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Commish looks at audits, meetings

Some notes from yesterday’s Knox County Commission meeting. I would have put them up earlier, but had to pitch in on some breaking news.

Anyhoo, the county commission officially sanctioned an audit of the school systems finances, signing off on a plan that lets the internal auditor review the six KCS credit cards, dating back five years, and other “credit devices” (i.e. travel cards, Sam’s cards, etc.) dating back two years.

We’ve reported about this extensively and are so far the only media outlet to report about how KCS didn’t pay their credit cards on time. RIGHT SMACK HERE for that one.

In the meantime, the commission also delayed voting on changing its meeting times.

The board opted to send the proposal back to its Rules Committee. Pretty sure this was done because they didn’t have the votes to approve the change.

“As the old saying goes: ‘If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,’” board member Mike Brown said. “We tried this once before and it didn’t work, so we went back and fixed it.”

The commission off and on for more than a month now has kicked around a proposal to bump up its start times – a move some members said would make it easier for the public to attend.

Others, however, weren’t so sure.

For example, commissioners Dave Wright and Amy Broyles both said the cooler months could actually hurt attendance.

“Not only will it be dark outside (when a meeting ends), it will be cold and dark,” Wright said.

The move also could hurt the county’s bottom line, too, members said.

“If we meet in the evening at 5 (p.m.) we have a considerable amount of staff that would have to be treated with a policy that may end up costing the county money,” Wright said. “Also, just the basics of getting people in and out of the building, the (Public Building Authority) may have to require more (security) support.”

Some like Commissioner Randy Smith said the later meetings “would make government more accessible,” since it would give those who work during the day a chance to attend.

Commissioner Ed Brantly, who initially proposed the change, agreed.

“We should be as convenient for (the public) as possible,” he said.

The County Commission currently holds its monthly beer board meetings at 1 p.m. on the fourth Monday of every month. It then holds its commission voting meetings at 2 p.m. and its zoning meetings follow at 5 p.m.

Officials talked about moving the beer board discussions to 4 p.m., the commission to 5 p.m. and zonings to 7 p.m. "or immediately following the commission meetings."

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