Nhamp. Commissioners make changes to meetings

Published 9:59 am Tuesday, December 11, 2018

JACKSON – Northampton County’s new Board of Commissioners promised change.

The first of those changes will be reflected in the Board’s meetings beginning in January. A unanimous vote here Dec. 3 approved changes to the Northampton County Commissioners Procedural Manual to hold commissioner meetings at 6 p.m. twice a month.

In the past, the commissioners have held their regular meetings on the first and third Monday of each month. The first Monday meeting conducted business beginning at 10 a.m. while the third Monday meeting was held in the evening at 6 p.m.

“There are no more 10 a.m. meetings,” said Chairman Charles Tyner as he noted the change in the manual.

“All of the commissioners and all the citizens have jobs, and we want you to go to your jobs so you can pay the county their tax,” Tyner said lightly, eliciting chuckles from those attending the Dec 3 meeting.

“We want you involved,” he added, more seriously as he addressed the citizens.

The goal is to make it more convenient for more people to attend the meetings.

In addition to the proposed time change, Tyner explained their plan to rotate the location of the month’s second meeting to various places within the county. Instead of traveling to Jackson each time, residents may have a chance to attend meetings closer to home. Notice of the location of these meetings will be given at least a week in advance.

The second monthly meeting will also be called a “work session” instead of a regular meeting with the intention of promoting discussion and leaving official county business for the first meeting of the month.

“That meeting will be nothing but a meeting where we talk to the citizens, let you know what we’re planning to do, and receive your input,” Tyner said.

Commissioner Geneva Faulkner motioned to approve the changes to the procedural manual, and Commissioner Kelvin Edwards seconded. The vote was unanimous.

The Board also voted to approve their meeting calendar for the year. Faulkner noted there will be two meetings held on Wednesdays in 2019 due to Monday holidays. The commissioners will meet on Wednesday, Jan. 23 because of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day and on Wednesday, Sept. 4 because of Labor Day.

This is a longstanding policy for the Board to hold meetings on the following Wednesday if a meeting falls on a Monday holiday.

The calendar was also unanimously approved by the Board.

The Board of Commissioner’s next regular meeting will be held at 6 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 7.