Dale Co. Residents to Vote on Possible Change to Gov't Leadership

By: Denise Bradberry Email
By: Denise Bradberry Email

Dale County residents will have a special referendum on their ballot Tuesday.

It’s to decide on a possible change to the county commission leadership.

Residents in Dale County will see special referendum, Act number 2010-109 on their ballots.

Dale County's attorney, Henry Steagall explained to News 4 exactly what that referendum would do, if passed.

“The Dale County Commission decided that it would be a good thing for the people of Dale County to vote on whether to change the make-up of county government to have a chairman, a full-time chairman that would preside over the commission,” says Steagall.

Currently the commission is chaired by the probate judge.

A yes vote would create a completely separate chairman position.

There are a few benefits to having a full-time county commission chairman.

“That person would not only preside over the meetings of the commission and would be involved in the management of the commission office but could also go to Washington and to Montgomery and to seek out grants that would help the commission and the people of the county,” says Steagall.

But there are also cons.

“The argument against it would be the additional cost,” says Steagall.

The chairman's salary, expense allowance, travel and other benefits would cost the county up to $70,000 extra each year.

“It's going to have to come out of the general fund. They would have to find this additional funding,” says Steagall.

If approved by the people, a chairman will not be voted into office until the 2012 general election and would take office once the current probate judge's term has ended.

“Our present probate judge, Judge Hagler has done an excellent job and this would not affect her in any way,” says Steagall.

We've attached a copy of the Dale County sample ballot on this story, if you'd like to review the exact wording of the referendum.

You can see it by clicking the document icon at the top of the story.

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