By Betsy Finklea
The first reading of an ordinance to amend the procurement code for Dillon County was tabled after three failed motions had been made by various councilmen.
Dillon County Council Chairman Archie Scott said he felt it was important for the council to be more in touch with the finances of the county and the spending of the money.
The current code allows the county administrator to spend up to $10,000. Scott proposed that the council reduce this amount to $2,500 so that the council could have more control over the finances. This would have meant that any purchases over $2,500 would have to be approved by the full council..
Councilman Bobby Moody said he didn’t like to change things if it was not appropriate. He said he felt this was a good policy, that they had hired the administrator to do the job, and he was not in favor of changing it.
Scott said he felt the change would allow the council to get a better handle on the spending and more say on how the money is spent in these tough, economic times.
Councilman Macio Williamson asked County Administrator Clay Young how he felt about it.
Young said he would not recommend the change, but the decision was strictly up to council. He said the limit in many other counties is $25,000 not $10,000 as in the council’s policy which was passed in 2001.
Scott said this was certainly not a “personal vendetta.”
Councilman Harold Moody said that they had another meeting in 10 days. He suggested that they take a look at it and put it on the agenda then. He said he had a figure in mind that was not as high as the current figure or as low as the proposed one.
Williamson then made a motion to lower the limit to $2,500. The motion failed due to lack of a second.
Scott said he thought the change would show the public that the council has a “watchful eye” on taxpayer dollars, and he thought it would be seen as good business and good sense in the eyes of the taxpayers.
Young said a limit as low as $2,500 would stop county government. He said purchase orders would have to be held until a full council vote.
B. Moody said they hired Young to run the county and he didn’t think they needed to change something that wasn’t broke. Councilman Aron Gandy said this would place a hardship on the councilmen as they ran back and forth to special meetings.
Councilman Andrew Graves made a motion that they visit this at a later date. This was seconded by H. Moody, and failed with only Graves, H. Moody, and Gandy voting for the motion.
B. Moody then made a motion to leave the policy as it is.
Councilman Joe Johnson said if they get to the point where they get a new administrator and feel that they need to change the limit at that time then they could change it then.
At this point, Gandy seconded B. Moody’s motion. This motion failed with only B. Moody and Gandy voting for the motion.
Scott tabled the discussion until the next meeting.
By Betsy Finklea