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The Miller County Quorum Court tabled a resolution to apply for a matching grant for Smith Park during their regular meeting Monday.

The grant from the Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism's Outdoor Recreation Grant Program would pay for sidewalks, electricity and restrooms at the park.

Miller County Judge Cathy Harrison said during the Budget and Finance Committee meeting, held prior to the Quorum Court meeting, that the county planned to ask for $250,000. She added that the county has $130,000 in the Smith Park account for improvements and that they would receive an estimated $25,000 to $30,000 from timber on the property.

The resolution, which states that it is a binding agreement with the ADPT, was tabled after the committee decided it needed to be more flexible to allow the county the option to match available funds and not a set amount.

In other business, the court heard an update from the Volunteer Fire Department Committee, which also met prior to the Quorum Court meeting. Justice Rodney Watkins told the court they are in final revisions of the Volunteer Fire Department Handbook, which will move the county to an emergency services district model and would include an administrative board to oversee the departments.

The court also approved a petty cash fund for the Tax Collector's Office. Miller County Tax Collector Laura Bates requested the fund of $500 for the office to allow them to collect on taxes that would otherwise be unpaid and to help the office file on probate cases, each of which requires a $5 fee.

The board also tabled a resolution for a pay increase for employees in the Circuit Clerk's Office. Circuit Clerk Mary Pankey asked for the raises to bring the salaries in line with other Class 4 counties, as Miller County has a high population and a high caseload. The board took no action and members said they would wait until the next budget cycle to consider the raises.

Barbara Pitts also made a presentation on the services Bridging the Gaps of Arkansas provides to seniors and youth at the Sandflat Center. She asked the court to consider partially funding some of the programs the non-profit agency has to provide greater opportunities for community members.

The court suggested she make another presentation to the Budget and Finance Committee in the fall when they will be preparing the 2020 budget.

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