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County taps brakes on fund distribution

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Trinity Countyseal 200By Tony Farkas
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GROVETON — The Trinity County Commissioners Court denied a request for Capital Credit funds for a non-profit organization, only to later approve funds for the city of Trinity that were never requested.

At its regular meeting on Nov. 22, the court denied a request from the Nigton Historical Development Project, which sought $5,000 for bicycles and food for underprivileged children in the Nigton and Apple Springs communities.

The county has roughly $60,000 in Capital Credit funds, money returned from the state to be used for non-profit and minority agencies. At its previous meeting, the Groveton Community Association requested and received $5,000 for its annual Christmas display.

Also at that meeting, Commissioner Neal Smith said that the city of Trinity should receive funds as well, as it was only fair.

However, at the most recent meeting, Commissioner Tommy Park said that all requests needed to be tabled until all requests were received before deciding how to divide the funds.

Commissioner Mike Loftin agreed, saying that once “they hear about” the money, “they line up.”

However, County Attorney Colton Hay pointed out that at the previous meeting, the discussion was about being fair, and the request from NHDP would bring those funds to the north part of the county, making things even more fair.

LaToya Walker-Hernandez of the NHDP told the court that things went at the last meeting, and that the other organizations brought no pricing or bids and there was no discussion beforehand.

Commissioner Steven Truss moved to approve the NHDP request, which was seconded by County Judge Doug Page. However, Smith, Park and Loftin voted to deny the request. Subsequent requests from Circle B Farm and Wildlife Rehab and the Trinity County Boys and Girls clubs were tabled, and yet the donation to the city of Trinity, which was not even requested, was approved, with Truss and Park voting against the measure, and Page breaking the tie in favor of it.

Smith said the court agreed to the donation two weeks prior, but since it was not on the agenda, could only be approved at the Nov. 22 meeting.

Truss said to be fair, that motion should have been tabled.

“We need a better game plan with this,” Truss said.

Hay again said that it was mentioned that what is done for Groveton should be done for Trinity; Smith agreed but did not extend that to the smaller communities in the county.

In other business, the county:

•approved the appointment of county residents to the Trinity County Historical Commission;

•approved personnel action forms;

•canvassed the election returns from the Nov. 8 election;

•approved opening a new bank account for incoming District Clerk Jillian Steptoe;

•approved hiring Axley and Rode for the FY 2022 audit;

•approved the transfer of Microsoft 365 licenses from General Informatics to TAC-CIRA and the county’s IT department;

•appointed Kelly McCroy as Veterans Services officer; and

•set Dec. 13 as a public hearing date for nuisance properties in the Westwood Shores subdivision.

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