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Lemons notifies commissioners of needed toilet repairs; jury pay clarified


The Clay County Jail passed its most recent jail inspection, announced Sheriff Kenny Lemons to commissioners in a regular meeting Monday, but is in need of a few repairs to remain in compliance.

“She gave us a list of things that wasn’t in violation, but that we needed to look at,” said the Sheriff. The items included the jail’s toilets.

The jail toilets, sink and faucet are one unit, in which water is temperature and pressure controlled. Lemons said the inspector noted the low pressure from the faucet. He said that with some adjustments, the toilets were brought back to compliance but were in need of repairs. The item will be discussed further during budget session this summer.

“We’re going to hold the line and see what next budget brings, and we’ll talk about it in budget session, and try to do something different then, but we’re not going to do anything now,” said Lemons.

The toilet valves are time delayed and keep the water at a steady temperature by mixing hot and cold, and the flow at a certain pressure. The valves come in a replacement kit at a cost of $2,500. The valves will need replacement to maintain compliance with state jail standards.

“They’re very pricy,” said Lemons. “We talked about this in budget session a couple of years ago, about just replacing all the toilets with new parts. But that is such a cumbersome thing, and so costly, that we just made a decision to patch them as we go, and that’s where we are at right now.”

According to Lemons, the state inspector said Clay County had overall one of the better jails in her area.

Commissioners took the following actions:

  • Approved an order to clarify juror pay. Persons called for jury duty will receive $15 if released before noon, $25 if released after noon, and $40 per day if chosen to serve on a jury.
  • Tabled the acceptance of bids for a bank depositor, giving County Treasurer Debra Alexander time to review the offers. Bids were received from two banks and opened.
  • Approved a request of Precinct 4 Commissioner A.J. Peek to accepted sealed bids for a 1964 loader and a 1999 half-ton pickup. See legal notice.
  • Approved a request by Lemons to place a battled water dispenser in the sheriff’s office.
  • Approved a request by County Attorney Seth Slagle for the purchase of four two-drawer filing cabinets at an estimated cost of $179 each.
  • Executed a statement of agreement between Clay County and the American Red Cross, which defines methods of cooperation, communication and coordination between the county and the organization during disasters.
  • Commissioners also discussed House Bill 1702, which would allow district judges to set the salaries of staff members. The county or counties in each judicial district currently set salaries. Denton County has submitted a statement opposing the bill.

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The Pioneer Sentinel is an online newspaper designed to deliver the news of Clay County, Texas, in a concise and community-friendly format.

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