Local News: Quorum Court approves ARP funds for air filter system at Fulton County Hospital (02/03/22)

The Fulton County Court of Quorum approved funds for an air filter system for Fulton County Hospital at their regularly scheduled monthly meeting held Tuesday, February 22.

The Fulton County Quorum Court met Tuesday, February 22 at 6 p.m. at the Miller Hickinbotham Building at the Fulton County Fairgrounds, Judge Gary Clayton presiding. The January meeting minutes were accepted and the current agenda was approved. The report of the clerk is also approved, as well as that of the treasurer.

In past cases, Clayton said the contractor for the courtroom annex project commissioned the building. Construction is on hold until they receive the necessary building and materials. “Once he gets a firm date for delivery, he’ll go ahead with the floors, plumbing and everything, so when he arrives he’ll be good to go,” Clayton said. Shop drawings of building materials will be delivered in early April so it will be ready to go when the building arrives.

Judge Clayton also provided an update on the air filter system to be placed in all buildings in the county. “Most of this has been completed.” Clayton suggested that there may still be a few buildings left to do; When the installer arrived, some of the buildings were closed and he could not enter. In response to a question, Clayton said the hospital was not included in the project. “It’s a whole different ball game,” he said.

The judge provided an update on the Mammoth Spring District Court action, no action has yet been taken. Clayton added: “I hope we reach a settlement here before too long.”

As part of new business, the quorum court must make appropriations for the sheriff’s office with our control funds. The county treasurer explained, “What I’m asking for is $4,000 to be transferred from our control fund to the [general fund].” The court voted to approve the movement of these funds so that they could be used.

Clayton proposed a resolution proposing how to use funds from the US bailout plan (ARP). History shows it was intended to be used for COVID-related programs and services. The judge has already received numerous proposals requesting ARP funds for one project or another. “I’m going to have to put the bulk of them on hold until the May allocation of that money comes in,” Clayton said. There is to be a second allocation of ARP funds in May 2022. He added: “The building we’re building there is going to take up most of that first round.”

After County Clerk Vickie Bishop read the resolution, the justices of the peace voted to accept the resolution. Justice Clayton addressed the issue of what will be required of any organization that accepts these funds. “Under state law, because we are dealing with an outside group, outside of the government, outside of our organization, we must enter into a contract with them that stipulates the use of [the funds]“, explained the judge. It organizes all incoming submissions so they are ready in case listeners need them.

Fulton County Hospital has applied for an ARP funds allocation for the replacement of an air-cooled condensing unit for obsolete equipment. It would include equipment to recirculate clean air, ridding it of over 99% of COVID viruses. They received offers, with the preferred offer amounting to just over $168,000. “I think it would be a good project,” Clayton said, “because it’s a project that will benefit people…through the use of hospital facilities.”

Bishop County Clerk read a resolution proposing the allocation of necessary ARP funds for Fulton County Hospital to purchase equipment needed to upgrade equipment and add an air filtration system to rid COVID virus air. Motions were filed and the court approved. It would come out of the first 2021 installment of ARP funds.

There has been much discussion about securing funding for new buildings, one for the Fulton County Sheriff’s Office, which has been approved by the court. Another was for the Mammoth Spring Library which is in desperate need of a new building, to be paid for from the library fund. There will be a meeting with the Mammoth Spring Library Board, and the matter will be reviewed after the meeting with the Library Board.

The court also heard a proposal from Safe Night Ministries for Domestic Violence, a non-profit organization that shelters battered women. Their main objective was to receive funds to build or renovate a residential shelter. They were currently finding hotel rooms and other places where they could place battered women, serving women in the tri-county area of ​​Sharp, Izard and Fulton. Clayton advised them to look for additional funding sources and come back in the spring after doing more research.

The Fulton County Quorum Court meets the third Monday of each month at 6 p.m. at the Miller Hickinbotham Building at the Fulton County Fairgrounds.