WEDOWEE--Randolph County Commissioners discussed doing some type of work at the site of the new county jail while awaiting the sale of bonds.

A Raymond James Financial Services rep and an architect will attend an upcoming commission workshop.

County administrator Kellie Graff has contacted almost all the local banks about assisting the county with a short-term loan for the jail project. The county has been collecting the sales tax for nine months. Money from this fund has already been used for partial payment to the architects.

"What's holding (the sale of bonds) up is the audits were allowed to get too far behind," said Graff. Audits must be done before bonds can be sold.

Sheriff David Cofield told the commission an inmate was scheduled for surgery on Tuesday, March 27. It is estimated to cost $11,000 to $12,000. The inmate had gone to the hospital on a medical bond. They couldn't do the procedure at that time and scheduled it for the 27th. While out, the man got a misdemeanor charge from Roanoke police and had to go back to jail, so the surgery will now be on the county's tab.

"I hate it, but we're obligated," said Commissioner Lathonia Wright.

Cofield said the judge will release him to a family member to transport him to the hospital for surgery. He is required to come back to jail when released from the hospital, or he will be considered as having escaped.

Road department

County engineer Burrel Jones provided the commission with resurfacing costs for roads the county is about to lose. The cost is $1.80 to $1.53 per square yard with a contractor to do it. This is approximately $18,000 per mile. The county would do the prep work and he would just lay it down. The more the county does would change the contractor's price.

All the commissioners discussed the worst roads in their districts. There are 20 to 25 miles in desperate need.

Jones said it would cost only $10,000 per mile if the county could do it, and it would also allow transfers from the 4-cent fund to the 7-cent fund.

It takes about 11 employees and a distributor truck, which they do not have. Sometimes counties own trucks together and share them.

"We did 20 miles three years ago, and that's the most we've done in 20 years. We need to get back on a cycle of 20 to 25 miles per year," said Commissioner Larry Roberts.

"That's why the amount of potholes is increasing," agreed Jones.

(For more from the Randolph County Commission see the March 28 issue of The Randolph Leader, print or e-edition.)

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